The North Queensland Club was established on the 24th June, 1885. Mr. R. L. Jack was elected first President of the Club. His Excellency the Honorable William Wellington Cairns KCMG, Governor of Queensland was elected the first Patron of the Club and successive Queensland Governors have held the office of Patron, as tradition dictates. The Club was originally known as the Gordon Club honouring the memory of the famous Australian poet, jockey and politician, Adam Lindsay Gordon who died in 1870. The first meeting was held at the Excelsior Hotel (the building no longer remains but it was located in Flinders Street East). Membership was initially only open to literary and professional gentlemen but in 1996 the membership was opened up to women.
The foundation membership was limited to 50 at an entrance fee of two Guineas and a yearly subscription of four Guineas. The first banker for the Club was the Union Bank of Australia Ltd which established its northern headquarters in 1885 on the corner of Denham and Flinders Streets, which now serves as the Perc Tucker Gallery. The Bank merged with the Bank of Australasia which later became the ANZ Bank.
The Club Rules were founded based on those of the Yorick Club in Melbourne which was formed in 1868 with a similar membership of those with literary interests. The Yorick Club merged with the Savage Club in 1966. The first clubrooms were situated in the two-storey Hoff Building (now known as Stanton House at 197-203 Flinders Street) in 1885, established by J.F. Hoff, one of Townsville's first butchers. In 1888 a lease was arranged at Denham House, the site of the current Clubhouse, and debate commenced around proposed name changes to the Townsville Club or North Queensland Club. On 15 January 1891 the Club formally became the North Queensland Club and on 4 February 1898, the Club members resolved to purchase Denham House on the site where the Club presently stands. A new Club House was constructed and the Club re-opened on 30 July 1965.
The Club proudly continues to provide an exclusive meeting place for likeminded people across North Queensland to discuss the important issues of the day and to plan for the future of their businesses, their professions, their communities and themselves.