Both James Cook and Matthew Flinders explored the Broad Sound inlet on which St Lawrence now stands and both recorded abnormally high tides. Flinders, in fact, noted in his log that a spring tide rose 30 feet (nine metres) above the low water mark.
Despite the observations, plans to create a port settlement on the eastern fringe of the Waverley Station went ahead. After frequent strandings, coastal shipping captains were relieved when the new railway eased St Lawrence off their regular ports of call.
Today, St Lawrence - 180km north of Rockhampton and about halfway between Rockie and Mackay - is the centre for the Broadwater Shire and lies just a few kilometres east of the turn-off from the Bruce Highway.
The shire adjoins the Defence Department’s vast Shoalwater Bay Military Training Centre where the concentration is on parachute drops, amphibious operations and live fire exercises.