The Commonwealth Citrus Research Station opened in Hanwood on September 24, 1924.
It was jointly operated by the Water Conservation & Irrigation Commission (WCIC) and the Commonwealth Institute for Science and Industry, a twin station to another in Merbein, Victoria.
Eric West, who came to Griffith in 1923 to work for the WCIC became the first officer-in-charge; he had three colleagues: Ben Martin, Phil Coonan and Frank Dufty.
Two farms were acquired, numbers 415 and 459.
The cottage on 459 became the laboratory, office and living quarters for then bachelors, West and Martin.
The Griffith and Merbein stations were incorporated into the CSIR when it was established in 1926.
CSIR became CSIRO in 1949.
A number of building programs enlarged the working laboratories over the years.
At first, most of the research farm was planted to citrus.
By 1928 the staff was increased from three to eight.
Peak staff numbers were 80 in the 1970s.
Eric West led the research station for over 30 years until his retirement in June 1956.
He was replaced by Eric Hoare in 1958; after he retired in 1977 the station had a series of chiefs or officers-in-charge.
At first the research focus was on soil, fertilizer-requirements and bud-selection of citrus; later additions were alternate bearing, cool storage and frost damage of citrus.
In 1939 the station became the CSIRO-Irrigation Research Station and had research programs on plant nutrition, irrigation techniques, soil salinity and river water quality.
Although citrus remained a focus of research, later additions were vegetable production (and this was first important during WWII), row crops such as cotton and sunflowers, aquatic plants (as weeds and water purifiers) and greenhouse technology.
CSIRO-Griffith closed in May 2016 after over 90 years of research into irrigated agriculture.
In 1916, the Australian Government established the Advisory Council of Science and Industry as the first step towards a "national laboratory".
By 1920, this had evolved into the Institute for Science and Industry under an Act of the Federal Parliament. In 1926, this Act was revised to form the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
The headquarters of all three institutions were established in a commonwealth government property at 314 Albert Street, East Melbourne. (www.csiro.au)