100 Anzac Heroes

My side project, “Hamilton’s WW1” has reached a major milestone with 100 published stories of Hamilton men who enlisted to serve. Just as the group of “Hamilton Boys” photographed below were a diverse bunch, so are their stories.

'HAMILTON BOYS' c 30 April 1915. Photo Courtesy of the Australian War Memorial. Image no.DAOD1060 https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/DAOD1060/

‘HAMILTON BOYS’ c 30 April 1915. Photo Courtesy of the Australian War Memorial.  https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/DAOD1060/


Early on most Hamilton men enlisted for adventure and to answer the call to serve their King and country. As time went on, it was a duty to brothers and friends who went before and made the ultimate sacrifice.  There was still the adventure factor, but mostly among the younger men desperate to follow their older brothers to war. They didn’t know the reality, shielded by censorship and urged on by propaganda.  So keen was nineteen-year-old George Basil Lance to enlist in 1916 and unable to obtain his mother’s permission, he crossed the border and enlisted in Adelaide as twenty-four-year-old Lance Basille  For other men, enlistment was an escape from sadness, grief or societies glare.


The lives the men were leaving behind varied greatly too.  Some were husbands, fathers, and widowers already experienced in life’s hardships such as George McQueen (below).  

GEORGE WILLIAM McQUEEN. Image courtesy of the Australian War Memorial

GEORGE WILLIAM McQUEEN. Image courtesy of the Australian War Memorial

Others were mere children. Ivan Shaw (below) eighteen at enlistment thankfully did return home but any of his boyish innocence was stolen away during three years of service.

Ivan Thomas Shaw. Image Courtesy of the Australian War Memorial. Image no.

IVAN THOMAS SHAW. Image Courtesy of the Australian War Memorial. Image no.

They came from loving homes and broken homes while others were born out of wedlock and raised by grandparents. They were rabbiters and drovers, teachers and law clerks.  There were the privileged and well-educated having attended Victoria’s leading private schools.  And those less fortunate for whom an education beyond the local state school was not an option.


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Just as their lives at home were different, so were their war-time experiences.  Some served from Gallipoli through to the last days of the war and were lucky to see the shores of Australia again but most were broken physically and mentally and early deaths were common.  There were those killed in the first month at Gallipoli and others during the last throes of the war when hopes were rising they would see home again.  There were others who died in Melbourne or England before reaching the battlefields.  

Some were killed instantly, while others lingered with wounds or succumbed to common illnesses such as pneumonia or the more exotic malaria.  Others were killed during the first action they faced, their eyes still wide from the horrors unlike those hardened from a string of battles. Those men suffered too. Pozieres proved even the most dedicated man could lose his sense of purpose, question officialdom and maybe begin to buck the system. They were buried in France and England, Syria and at sea. Many of their bodies were never recovered and the only evidence they lie on foreign soil are their names on memorials at Lone Pine, Villers-Bretonneux and the Menin Gate. 


Hamilton’s WW1 offers a snapshot of life in all towns and cities across Australia during those war years and the men are indicative of all Australian men who enlisted. You can read the stories of the Hamilton men on the link-Hamilton’s WW1 or via the “Hamilton’s WW1” tab at the top of this page. There you will find a link to all names of enlisted men with Hamilton connections. Click on those underlined to read their WW1 story. Visiting the Hamilton WW1 Memorial page will take you to various Hamilton war memorials.  Again, any of the underlined names are those with a completed story.

Hamilton’s WW1 Facebook page offers a daily article from the Hamilton Spectator from 100 years before and the stories of the men are posted on significant anniversaries during their service.

Even though I’ve reached this milestone, it’s not time to stop.  There are still over two hundred men from Hamilton, just as deserving to have their stories told.  I also cannot forget Hamilton’s WW1 nurses and I will begin adding their stories soon.

Passing of the Pioneers

There are fourteen new pioneers this month, including two old colonists Cecil Cooke and Jane Fountain.  There is Thomas Rutledge born in Port Fairy in 1846 and  a son of one of that town’s prominent early residents. Don’t forget if you see underlined text, you can click on it for further information about the subject.

Cecil Pybus COOKE – Died 30 September 1895 at Condah.  In 1836 when Major Thomas Mitchell returned to Sydney after his third expedition taking in Victoria’s Western District he described as Australia Felix, word spread far and wide.  In England, Cecil Pybus Cooke heard of the “good country” in the new-found part of the colony and set off to see for himself.  Cecil was a son of a Madras Civil Servant William Cooke and was born in India in 1813.


CECIL PYBUS COOKE c1870. PHOTOGRAPHERS: JOHNSTONE, O’SHANNESSY & CO. Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/334502

Cecil sailed to Launceston and arrived  on 3 April 1839 along with two servants.

"Shipping Intelligence." The Hobart Town Courier (Tas. : 1827 - 1839) 5 April 1839: 2. Web. 13 Sep 2016 .

“Shipping Intelligence.” The Hobart Town Courier (Tas. : 1827 – 1839) 5 April 1839: 2. Web. 13 Sep 2016 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article4159238&gt;.

During the voyage, Cecil met George Winter, on his way to join his brother Samuel Pratt Winter who had already made his way to the Western District.  Travelling with George was his sister Arbella who caught Cecil’s eye.  Just a month after they disembarked at Launceston, Cecil and Arbella were married at St John’s Church, Launceston.

"Family Notices" Launceston Advertiser (Tas. : 1829 - 1846) 23 May 1839: 2. Web. 13 Sep 2016 .

“Family Notices” Launceston Advertiser (Tas. : 1829 – 1846) 23 May 1839: 2. Web. 13 Sep 2016 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article84751097&gt;.

Soon after, the newlyweds boarded a schooner for Victoria arriving at Portland Bay on 10 July 1839.  Cecil even travelled with his own accommodation, bringing a hut from England and he set it up in Portland. Soon after, he took up a run on the Smokey River, or Crawford River as it more commonly known.  In 1842, a daughter Emily was born and she died the following year. Cecil and Arabella went on to have five sons.  Cecil was finding pioneering life tough and things were not going to plan so he went further north to Harrow in 1845 and set up the Pine Hills Estate. More bad luck came when a fire went through the property in 1846.  By 1849, Cecil had sold Pine Hills to David Edgar.  He then bought Lake Condah Station.  In 1864, Cecil sold Lake Condah but the purchaser was unable to make the repayments so he retained it.

One of Cecil and Arbella’s sons Samuel Winter Cooke inherited Murndal, west of Hamilton from his uncle Samuel Pratt Winter in 1878. He employed his brother Cyril Trevor Cooke as manager from 1883. Samuel later became a Member of the Legislative Council for the Western Province. Cecil and Arbella spent a lot of time at Murndal. The photos below are a collection of photos of or relating to Cecil Cooke held by the State Library of Victoria with most taken at Murndal.

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Cecil Cooke was a Justice of the Peace and held court at the Branxholme Magistrates Court.  He was Church of England and contributed to the building of St Thomas’ Anglican church at Condah. Arbella died on 1 May 1892 and Cecil had a church built at Spring Creek (below) near Condah in memory of his wife with the foundation stone laid on 24 March 1894.


ST. PHILLIPS CHURCH OF ENGLAND, SPRING CREEK 1983. Image courtesy of the J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/233693

Just two years after his wife, Cecil was buried at Murndal Private Cemetery with Arbella. On 13 March 1900, a memorial window was unveiled for Cecil Cooke at the Condah Church of England.

Jane FOUNTAIN: Died 10 September 1901 at Hamilton.  Jane Fountain was born in Cowick, Yorkshire, England on 5 December 1823.  When she was eighteen, Jane married James Blastock and soon after the newlyweds left England for Australia, arriving in Melbourne in July 1841.  In 1843, they travelled by bullock wagon via Hamilton to Heywood.  Jane and James remained there for a short time before returning to Hamilton, then known as the Grange and in 1844, they purchased the Grange Inn. The only other businesses then were a shoemaker and blacksmiths.  The photo below shows the Grange settlement when Blastocks ran the Grange Inn and shows land nearby owned by James Blastock.



One of the guests at the Grange Inn during the Blastock’s time there was Charles Latrobe prior to his appointment as Lieutenant Governor.  They sold the Grange Inn and purchased the Mooralla Station, north of Hamilton with James’ brother-in-law Mr. Malcolm.  Leaving Mr. Malcolm to run Mooralla, Jane and James returned to England for a visit.  On their return, they sold Mooralla and built the Victoria Hotel in Gray Street, Hamilton.

"Advertising" Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876) 17 September 1855: 4 (EVENING). Web. .

“Advertising” Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876) 17 September 1855: 4 (EVENING). Web. <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article71572794&gt;.

1930 Museum Victoria Collections http://collections.museumvictoria.com.au/items/766568

VICTORIA HOTEL, GRAY STREET, HAMILTON 1930 Museum Victoria Collections http://collections.museumvictoria.com.au/items/766568

In 1857, James Blastock died aged forty-six and in 1859, Jane married James Wiggins.  They spent some time living in Geelong then returned to Hamilton and settled at Sandal on Digby Road overlooking the former site of the Grange Inn.  Jane was a member of the Wesleyan Church and was involved with the Sunday School.  She had an excellent memory of the early days of Hamilton and was often called on for her recollections.  In 1893, journalist The Vagabond called on Jane and she was able to show him the route Major Mitchell took when he crossed the Grange Burn in September 1836. On 24 August 1899, the Hamilton Spectator published an article “The Infancy of Hamilton” featuring Jane’s memories.  At the time of her death, Jane was Hamilton’s oldest resident.

George SMITH: Died 8 September 1916 at Byaduk. George Smith was born in Devonshire, England about 1843.  He arrived in Victoria in 1852 at Portland before moving on to Warrnambool. George moved north to Muddy Creek where he attended the local Primitive Methodist Church.  After a few years, he moved to Byaduk, working as a carrier.  George left a widow, five sons, and two daughters at the time of his death.

Hannah GREGORY: Died 9 September 1916 at Penshurst. Hannah Gregory was born at Preece, Shropshire, England around 1825 and arrived in Sydney around 1864.  Hannah then went to New Zealand where she met her husband James Chesswas and they returned to Australia, settling at Penshurst around 1873.  They lived in Bell Street and James worked as a tanner and currier.  James died in 1896 and Hannah continued on at Penshurst until her death at age ninety-one.

Hanorah RYAN:  Died 30 September 1917 at Kirkstall. Hanorah Ryan was born in Ireland around 1845 and arrived in Australia at the age of twenty, marrying William Pye in 1865.  The couple settled at Kirkstall and went on to have five sons and six daughters.  Hanorah was buried at Tower Hill Cemetery.

Elizabeth BYRNES:  Died 30 September 1917 at Terang.  Elizabeth Byrnes was born at Scarva, County Down, Ireland around 1835.  She married Thomas Kearns in Ireland and they arrived in 1856 aboard the Anna Maria with their two-year-old daughter to Port Fairy.  They settled at Woodford and had four sons and six more daughters.  Around 1911, Elizabeth moved to Terang to lived with her eldest daughter until her death.

Thomas Forster RUTLEDGE:  Died 6 September 1918 at Toorak.  Thomas Rutledge was born at Port Fairy in 1846, a son of well-known resident William Rutledge and Eliza Kirk.  His first home was most likely Emoh below, dating back to 1849 and sold by William Rutledge in 1863.



In 1876, Thomas married Edith Ritchie.  Eventually, Thomas and his brother took over their father’s Farnham run.  The 5000 acre property covered the area from the Merri River near Dennington Killarney, further west.  The two sons split it, with Thomas taking up Werronggurt and his brother the remaining Farnham run.  Thomas bred Lincoln sheep and was known as one of the best judges of Lincolns in the state. He also imported and bred Shorthorn cattle and imported many Clydesdale mares from Scotland.  A popular and charitable man, Thomas was one of the first directors of the Farnham butter factory and on the board of the Rosebrook butter factory. He also served on the Warrnambool Shire.

Thomas gradually sold off his holdings and he and Edith moved to Bell Park at Geelong. At one stage, Thomas and Edith spent time living in New Zealand then returned to Geelong. They eventually moved to Woodford in Toorak.  At the time of his death, Thomas left his widow Edith and five daughters and one son, Geoffrey, at the time a 2nd Lieutenant with the Australian Flying Corps.  Another son, Noel was killed at Ploegsteert, Belgium on 3 June 1917 while serving with the 3rd Division Artillery.

Marie GWYTHER:  Died 8 September 1919 at Hamilton.  Marie Gwyther was born in Pembroke, South Wales on 2 March 1824. She arrived in Melbourne around 1855 with her three brothers, George, William, and Henry. They stayed in Melbourne a week before moving on to Portland then arriving in Hamilton on 2 August 1855.  At the time, the rent on a hut was one pound and a bag of flour ten pounds.  Marie was a Presbyterian and attended the ceremony of the laying of the foundation stone by William Skene of Hamilton’s first Presbyterian church (below) on 21 October 1857.


HAMILTON’S FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH TO THE RIGHT WITH THE HAMILTON ANGLICAN CHRIST CHURCH ON THE LEFT. c1890. Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/69513

During the 1870s, Marie spent time at Harrow working as a cook at the Hermitage Hotel.  Marie never married and was “loved by all with who she came in contact.” She lived in Goldsmith Street and as a keen gardener always had a lovely garden.

Isabella McDONALD:  Died September 1942 at Geelong. Isabella was born at Mortlake around 1864.  Her father Alexander is thought to have built Mack’s Hotel at Mortlake before purchasing the Camperdown Hotel. In 1888, Isabella married John Charles Haugh and they remained in Camperdown.  John worked as a baker and they had a family of six sons and two daughters.  John Haugh died only four months after Isabella on 19 January 1943.

John PITMAN:  Died 4 September 1943 at Portland. John Pitman was born at Macarthur around 1865.  While still a teenager, John took up land at Patyah north of Edenhope.  In 1897, he married Ellen Montgomery of Neuarapurr.  John was interested in athletics and in his early years was a boxer, athlete, cricketer.  In his later years, John took up bowls.  He retired to Portland in 1921.

Arthur PERRETT:  Died September 1948 at Colac.  Arthur Perrett was born in January 1884 at Camperdown and married Gertrude Swayn at the Pomberneit Presbyterian Church in 1911.  They settled at Derrinellum where Arthur ran a boarding house and grocery store.  They returned to Camperdown and Arthur worked for Kleine’s Bakery as a delivery driver. He then obtained work at the Werribee Research Farm before managing a branch of the farm at Boisdale in Gippsland.  Arthur and Gertrude returned to the Western District in 1921 when Arthur took up a dairy farm at Pirron Yallock, west of Colac. In 1929, Arthur bought a block in the Reads Estate at Dreeite further north.  At both Pirron Yallock and Dreeite, Arthur was on the local state school committee.

John TEHAN:  Died 10 September 1953 at Camperdown.  John Tehan was born at Heathcote in 1872 and arrived in the Western District as a young man and worked at Youngers at Warrnambool. He then worked for Morrisons General Store in Manifold Street Camperdown for sixteen years. In 1900, John married Jessie Peter.  They had two sons and two daughters. In 1907, John opened his own shop in Manifold street.  In 1913, he called for tenders to build a large new brick store on the site.  In 1934, John demolished the shops had four new shops built in their place.

"BUILDING ENTERPRISE" Camperdown Chronicle (Vic. : 1877 - 1954) 15 December 1934: 2. Web. .

“BUILDING ENTERPRISE” Camperdown Chronicle (Vic. : 1877 – 1954) 15 December 1934: 2. Web. <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article27397193&gt;.

Thomas Stewart LORD:  Died 12 September 1954 at Warrnambool.  Thomas Lord was born at Port Campbell around 1882 and was the first boy of European descent born there.  His parents William and Jessie Lord had settled there in 1876.  Thomas attended the Port Campbell State School but did spend two years at school in Bairnsdale in East Gippsland.  He returned to Port Campbell and worked in the local store from the age of fifteen. Thomas was the first secretary of the Port Campbell Football Club and a member of the school committee.  He was also a director of the Cobden and District Pioneer Butter Factory (below)

Museum Victoria Collections http://collections.museumvictoria.com.au/items/772409

COBDEN BUTTER FACTORY 1933. Museum Victoria Collections http://collections.museumvictoria.com.au/items/772409

Thomas’ funeral was one of the largest funerals seen in Port Campbell.


Major Mitchell Homeward Bound

We left Major Mitchell on 13 September 1836 as he and his party left camp near the Grange Burn, east of what is now Hamilton.  They made their way to the southern tip of the Grampians but Sydney was in their sights.  They were heading home.  By the end of the day, Mitchell’s party had reached the base of Mount Sturgeon where they camped for the night.


MOUNT STURGEON – c 1870-1888 – PHOTOGRAPHER: THOMAS WASHBOURNE. Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/53338

From the camp, Mitchell could see Mount Abrupt just to the north-east and on the morning of 14 September, he set off to climb to its summit.

1870-1888 http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/53112

MOUNT ABRUPT – c1870-1888. PHOTOGRAPHER THOMAS WASHBOURNE. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/53112

Of the experience, he wrote,

…from the summit of Mount Abrupt I beheld a truly sublime scene; the whole of the mountains, quite clear of clouds, the grand outline of the more distant masses blended with the sky, and forming a blue and purple background for the numerous peaks of the range on which I stood, which consisted of sharp cones and perpendicular cliffs foreshortened so as to form one grand feature only of the extensive landscape, though composing a crescent nearly 30 miles in extent: this range being but a branch from the still more lofty masses of Mount William which crowned the whole. Towards the coast there was less haze than usual, for I could distinguish Lady Julia Percy’s Isle which I had looked for in vain from Mount Napier, a point twenty-four miles nearer to it. Here I could also trace the course of the stream we had crossed that morning from its sources under the eastern base of the mountains to a group of lower hills twenty-seven miles distant to the westward; which hills, named by me Dundas group…



He continued,

From this hill two other ranges branch off to the south; the western being marked Victoria range on the map, the eastern, the Serra, from its serrated appearance, the broken outlines they present being highly ornamental to the fine country around. On the northern slopes of the range are some forests of fine timber but in general the higher summits are bare and rocky.

Upon his descent, the party travelled east.  They had only gone a few miles when one of the bullocks collapsed from exhaustion near what is now Dunkeld.  It was a long journey for the bullocks made worse by the soft winter ground of south-west Victoria, so Mitchell decided to set up camp. There was also a broken axle to repair. Mitchell sent his second in charge, Granville Stapylton ahead to see how much further before the ground improved. On his return at nightfall on 15 September, he advised Mitchell that it was only another three or four miles.

Before setting out the next day, it was decided to leave some of the party behind to work on the broken axle. Also, half of the equipment would stay but all the bullocks would go ahead with the remaining equipment then make a return trip to collect the rest.  The reduced party set out again on the morning of 16 September and found the soft ground was also littered with sharp stones. They travelled eleven miles before they “encamped near a small lagoon on a spot where there was excellent grass”.  The site was around six kilometres south-west of what is today Glenthompson.

The bullocks returned to the previous camp and arrived back to the leading party the next day, exhausted and unable to go on until Mitchell conceded,”…they had enjoyed at least some weeks of repose”.  Low provisions did not allow such a break and it was time for what Mitchell described as “mature deliberation”.  The resolution was he and most of the party would go ahead to Sydney, while Mr Stapylton and a smaller party would stay behind with the bullocks and equipment.

…the camp in which Mr. Stapylton’s party was to remain two weeks was in as favourable a place for refreshing the cattle as could be found. The ground undulated and was thickly clothed with fresh verdure; a grassy swamp also, such as cattle delight in, extended northward into a lake of fresh water which I named Lake Repose. The peaks of the Serra Range and especially Mount Abrupt were landmarks which secured the men from even the possibility of losing their way in looking after the cattle.  

(Mitchell, T. L. (Thomas Livingstone), 1792-1855 and University of California Libraries Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia; with descriptions of the recently explored region of Australia Felix, and of the present colony of New South Wales. T. & W. Boone, London, 1839. Chapter 3.11)


Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/236368

On 19 September 1836, Mitchell bid farewell to Stapylton and turned his horse’s head for home.  At points along the way, he buried letters for Stapylton, of which he later found four.  Mitchell arrived back in Sydney on 3 November 1836 much to the surprise and relief of his family who thought him dead.

There is a last chapter in the story of Major Mitchell’s party at Lake Repose coming soon.


Mitchell, T. L. (Thomas Livingstone), 1792-1855 and University of California Libraries Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia; with descriptions of the recently explored region of Australia Felix, and of the present colony of New South Wales. T. & W. Boone, London, 1839.

Monument Australia – Thomas Mitchell Memorial Cairn – Glenthompson


Major Mitchell Crosses the Grange

We left Major Mitchell on his return to camp north of Mount Eckersley after an excursion to Portland Bay. Mitchell’s next target was Mount Napier to the north-east.  The party headed in that direction on 2 September but the heavy going slowed the wagons.  They set up camp on 3 September and the following day, Mitchell set off with a smaller party for Mount Napier.  Swamps and later volcanic rocks, a feature of the countryside hampered the journey, but soon the mountain was before them.


MOUNT NAPIER. Image courtesy of Tony Esh.

Mitchell climbed to the summit and discovered the crater.  The idea of an extinct volcano was of great interest to him.  Looking around, he could see the Grampians and Mount William to the north.  Meanwhile, the sun was setting and before Mitchell knew, it was too late to return to camp.  He ascended and camped the night at the base of Mount Napier in unfavourable weather.  In the morning, fog hung over the mountain until 10:30 am and he returned to camp twenty-six miles away.

The party had to move on, so Mitchell headed them north toward Mount Napier. He thought the knowledge he gained on his earlier trip would see them bypass the swamps but soon swamps were again in their path, slowing the wagons.  Mitchell decided to set up camp about eight miles away from Mount Napier, possibly on the Lyne Creek or Camp Creek west of Byaduk North.



From the camp, Mitchell set off again for Mount Napier.  At the summit the view was hazy, but occasionally it cleared enabling  Mitchell to sight and name Lake Linlithgow and Mount Rouse to the north-east.  Mitchell and the party spent the following day around Mount Napier before packing up the base camp on September 11 and setting off in a northerly direction.  His journal entry for 11 September read,


About that time a yellow flower in the grass caught my eye and, remembering that we had seen none of these golden flowers since we left the beautiful valley of the Wannon, I ventured to hope that we were at length approaching the good country at the head of that stream. Such was my anxious wish when I perceived through the trees a glimpse of an open grassy country, and immediately entered a fine clear valley with a lively little stream flowing westward through it and which I named the Grange. This was indeed one of the heads of the Wannon and we had at length reached the good country.

So Mitchell thought he had crossed the Grange.  Most  likely it was Violet Creek.  They followed the creek north until it veered to the west and the party continued on to the north.  The following day, 12 September 1836, they came to what is likely to have been Muddy Creek. They then met a “smaller stream” we know today as the Grange Burn,

We proceeded next along a continuous ridge of fine firm ground covered with excellent grass, and soon after we saw before us a smaller stream flowing under a broad grassy vale and, having crossed it also without difficulty, we encamped in one of the valleys beyond, where this tributary appeared to originate. A finer country could scarcely be imagined: enormous trees of the mimosa or wattle of which the bark is so valuable grew almost everywhere; and several new varieties of Caladenia were found today. The blue, yellow, pink, and brown-coloured were all observed on these flowery plains.  (Three Expeditions into the Interior of Eastern Australia : with descriptions of the recently explored region of Australia Felix, and of the present colony of New South Wales by Major T. L. Mitchell, Volume 2, Chapter 3.9)

The point at which Mitchell crossed Hamilton’s Grange Burn is not entirely obvious but it is generally considered it was close to the Digby Road bridge where the Grange settlement would begin a few years later (below).



In 1884, the Hamilton Spectator published an article entitled “Early Settlement of Australia Felix” charting the path of Major Mitchell.  Along with Mitchell’s description, landmarks from the 1880s were included.


“EARLY SETTLEMENT OF AUSTRALIA FELIX.” Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 – 1918) 20 November 1884: 3. Web. 8 Sep 2016 .

After crossing the Grange Burn, it’s thought Mitchell’s party moved roughly north-east along what is now Lonsdale Street.





Don Garden in his book “Hamilton, A Western District History” also suggests Collins Street as a possible route. With Mitchell’s limited description, there is nothing to say they didn’t follow the course of the Grange Burn because, by the end of 12 September, they had set up camp on the Grange near Strathkellar, east of Hamilton.

"EARLY SETTLEMENT OF AUSTRALIA FELIX." Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 - 1918) 20 November 1884: 3. Web. 8 Sep 2016 .

“EARLY SETTLEMENT OF AUSTRALIA FELIX.” Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 – 1918) 20 November 1884: 3. Web. 8 Sep 2016 .

Along the way, Mitchell saw and named Mount Bainbrigge (now commonly known as Mount Baimbridge), to the north and Mount Pierrepoint to the south.  On September 13, the expedition moved off from the Strathkellar camp.  Mitchell’s journal entry for the day read,

We broke up our camp early this morning and on reaching the highest ground we discovered a large lake on our left: it was nearly circular, about half a mile in circumference and surrounded by high firm banks from which there was no visible outlet; I named it Lake Nivelle.  

(Three Expeditions into the Interior of Eastern Australia : with descriptions of the recently explored region of Australia Felix, and of the present colony of New South Wales by Major T. L. Mitchell, Volume 2, Chapter 3.9)

Lake Nivelle is known today as Lake Doling Doling, on the Doling Road at Strathkellar.  From there Mitchell’s party headed toward the southern point of the Grampians.  We’ll meet up with Major Mitchell again on 18 September when it will be 180 years ago since he passed near Glenthompson.


News of the “good country” soon spread on Major Mitchell’s return to Sydney. Within two years, interested parties were on their way to see for themselves.  Charles, Richard, and Edward Wedge were the first to arrive in 1838 taking up the Grange run.  

Early arrivals at The Grange as Hamilton was known, were James and Jane Blastock in 1843. James purchased the Grange Inn in 1844, very close to where Major Mitchell passed less than ten years earlier.  The map below shows the Grange Inn or Blastock’s Inn, near the crossing of the Grange on Digby Road.



James Blastock died in 1857 and his widow Jane married James Wiggins.  In 1893, journalist The Vagabond made a return visit to Hamilton, having previously visited in 1884.  For accurate information on the early settlement of Hamilton, locals suggested he visit Hamilton’s oldest resident Jane Wiggins at her home Sandal on the Grange Burn, not far from where she had lived with her late husband at the Grange Inn.


From her cottage’s verandah on the hill on Digby Road,  Jane Wiggins pointed out the track Major Mitchell travelled along and the site of the former Grange Inn.

"HAMILTON" Leader (Melbourne, Vic. : 1862 - 1918) 25 November 1893: .

“HAMILTON” Leader (Melbourne, Vic. : 1862 – 1918) 25 November 1893: <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article196644733&gt;.


In 1937, Hamilton celebrated the 100th anniversary of Major Mitchell’s passing through the area with a week of activities including a “Back to Hamilton”. You may wonder why it was not held in 1936. The organising committee did consider September 1936, but thought since the first settlement was in 1838, early 1937 mid-way between the two events was a better option.  Early on in the planning stages, the committee had problems with funding and raising public interest.  That may have also contributed to the later date.  Despite the early problems, the celebration was a roaring success. A highlight was a lecture by historian Alfred S. Kenyon on the summit of Mount Napier where a memorial cairn was unveiled in 1915.

"CENTENARY AT HAMILTON" The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957) 13 March 1937: 24. .

“CENTENARY AT HAMILTON” The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1957) 13 March 1937: 24. <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article11049077&gt;.

Another highlight was the unveiling of a Major Mitchell memorial cairn at Hamilton on 15 March 1937.  Just off Lonsdale Street, the acting premier Francis Old unveiled the cairn before several hundred people.  Also, Thomas Mitchell’s grandson presented the town with a photo of his explorer grandfather.

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Garden, Donald S. (Donald Stuart) and Hamilton (Vic.). Council Hamilton, a Western District history. City of Hamilton in conjunction with Hargreen, North Melbourne, 1984.

Hamilton Spectator at Trove Australia

Mitchell, T. L. (Thomas Livingstone), 1792-1855 and University of California Libraries Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia; with descriptions of the recently explored region of Australia Felix, and of the present colony of New South Wales. T. & W. Boone, London, 1839.




Major Mitchell Reaches Portland Bay

On 29 August 1836, Major Thomas Mitchell saw Portland Bay for the first time.  Since we last were with Mitchell on his freezing night on the summit of Mount William in July 1836, he and his party had travelled a great distance and being winter, the terrain was mostly muddy. From Mount William, the party had travelled north to and climbed Mount Zero. Then west along the northern Grampians to Mount Arapiles and Mitre Lake.  Scaling Mount Arapiles, which he named, Mitchell was able to see the country to the south and it was in that direction they next travelled.


MOUNT ARAPILES BY NICHOLAS CHEVALIER 1865. Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/136946

As they moved out of the Wimmera and into the Western District, Mitchell noted,

Thus suddenly were we at length relieved from all the difficulties of travelling in mud. We had solid granite beneath us; and instead of a level horizon the finely rounded points of ground presented by the sides of a valley thinly wooded and thickly covered with grass. This transition from all that we sought to avoid to all we could desire in the character of the country was so agreeable that I can record that evening as one of the happiest of my life.  (Mitchell, T. L. (Thomas Livingstone) Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia, Chapter 3.9)

They soon met the Glenelg River near Harrow on 31 July, and from there they passed through Pigeon Ponds, Chetwynd, and Wando Vale. On 7 August, the party reached the Wannon valley south of Casterton at the Wannon River’s junction with the Glenelg River and saw a beautiful scene before them.

After fording this stream with ascended a very steep but grassy mountain-side, and on reaching a brow of high land, what a noble prospect appeared, a river winding amongst meadows that were fully a mile broad and green as an emerald. Above them rose swelling hills of fantastic shapes, but all smooth and thickly covered with rich verdure. Behind these were higher hills, all having grass on their sides and trees on their summits, and extending east and west throughout the landscape as far as I could see. I hastened to ascertain the course of the river by riding about two miles along an entirely open grassy ridge, and then found again the Glenelg, flowing eastward towards an apparently much lower country. All our difficulties seemed thus already at an end, for we had here good firm ground, clear of timber, on which we could gallop once more. The river was making for the most promising bay on the coast (for I saw that it turned southward some miles below the hill on which I stood) through a country far surpassing in beauty and richness any part hitherto discovered. (Mitchell, T. L. (Thomas Livingstone) Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia, Chapter 3.10)


MERINO DOWNS. Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria Museum Victoria Collections http://collections.museumvictoria.com.au/items/766481

From there, they travelled to near where Dartmoor is today and Mitchell launched a boat on the Glenelg River at Fort O’Hare and with a small party, made his way to the sea.


THE GLENELG RIVER. Image courtesy of the State Library of South Australia http://collections.slsa.sa.gov.au/resource/PRG+280/1/14/36

Expecting to come out near Portland Bay, they were further west, reaching the mouth of the river at what is now Nelson.



The party turned back up the river and returned to the camp at Fort O’Hare. They then travelled along the Crawford River and with the carts getting bogged down in heavy ground, Mitchell and a small party set out on horseback to Portland Bay.  Their first stop was near Heywood and a large hill Mitchell climbed and named Mount Eckersley.  From there they crossed the Fitzroy and Surry Rivers bringing us back to 29 August 1836 and Major Mitchell’s first sighting of the coast at Portland Bay.



Major Mitchell walked on to the beach littered with whale carcases, evidence of whalers in the area.  A member of the party, Aboriginal man Tommy Came-last, reported cattle tracks and the footprints of a white man.  Tobacco pipes and a broken bottle were also found, possibly from the whalers but they would not have had cattle.  Looking around the bay, Mitchell saw houses, possibly whalers huts, so they headed toward them.  Mitchell and his party descended high cliffs and could see a ship anchored in the bay.  Approaching the wooden houses they found they discovered they were abandoned whalers’ shacks but just as they were moving on, two shots rang out.  Mitchell ordered one of his men to fire off a shot and to sound the bugle.  They climbed to higher ground and found a cart track which they followed until a man approached them. Mitchell continues,

He informed me in answer to my questions that the vessel at anchor was the “Elizabeth” of Launceston; and that just round the point there was a considerable farming establishment belonging to Messrs. Henty, who were then at the house. It then occurred to me that I might there procure a small additional supply of provisions, especially of flour, as my men were on very reduced rations. I therefore approached the house and was kindly received and entertained by the Messrs. Henty who as I learnt had been established there during upwards of two years. It was very obvious indeed from the magnitude and extent of the buildings and the substantial fencing erected that both time and labour had been expended in their construction. A good garden stocked with abundance of vegetables already smiled on Portland Bay; the soil was very rich on the overhanging cliffs, and the potatoes and turnips produced there surpassed in magnitude and quality any I had ever seen elsewhere. (Mitchell, T. L. (Thomas Livingstone) Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia, Chapter 3.11)

The following day, Mitchell made a trip to Cape Nelson then returned to Portland.



Major Mitchell said his goodbyes to the Hentys and continued on his way.



The party returned to the Surry River then continued back to the base camp. On 31 August, Mitchell’s party reached Mount Clay with Mitchell naming it, and by sunset they were back at the base camp.  We leave Major Mitchell now but will join him again on 11 September when he reaches what is now Hamilton. 

The arrival of Major Mitchell at the doorstep of the Henty’s home at Portland Bay influenced their future.  In glowing terms, Mitchell had told them of the land around the Wannon Valley he described as “Australia Felix”.  On his recommendation, the brothers travelled north to see for themselves. Within twenty-five miles from their settlement at Portland Bay, they noticed the change in the countryside.  Stephen Henty’s reaction was simply, “This is paradise.”  By 3 August 1837,  Henty sheep were on the land at Merino Downs and soon Muntham Station, opening the next chapter in the history of the Henty brothers.

J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/231999

HENTY MONUMENT, MERINO DOWNS. Image courtesy of the J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/231999



MUMTHAM HOMESTEAD. Image courtesy of the J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/217208

This video of Muntham Station shows the countryside Major Mitchell and the Henty brothers found so attractive.



Back to Merino and Henty Centenary Celebrations Committee Historic souvenir of the Back to Merino and Henty centenary celebrations, November 11th to 15th, 1937. Back to Merino and Henty Centenary Celebrations Committee, [Merino? Vic, 1937.

Glenelg Library Historic Treasures – Major Mitchell meets the Hentys

Mitchell, T. L. (Thomas Livingstone) Three expeditions into the interior of eastern Australia, with descriptions of the recently explored region of Australia Felix, and of the present colony of New South Wales. London, T. & W. Boone


Passing of the Pioneers

As the Passing of the Pioneer post comes together each month, I often find the pioneers have something in common.  Sometimes it’s their occupations or their birthplace.  This month, five of the twelve pioneers went to the goldfields after arriving in Victoria. It is one of the most common similarities I come across, and not surprising as gold was the big drawcard to Victoria in the 1850s. To read the newspaper obituary for each pioneer, just click on their name.  You can also click on other underlined text in the post to find more information.

William Henry GUBBINS:  Died 9 August 1905 at Penshurst. William Gubbins was born at Tavistock, Devonshire, England around 1827 and arrived in Victoria in the mid-1850s. After his arrival, he went to the diggings at Creswick then later Clunes. Around that time, William married Mary Ann Down and they had five children.  The family then spent time around the Terang district before purchasing  Burn Brae Estate at Penshurst in 1888.

J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/233170

“BURN BRAE” HOMESTEAD, PENSHURST IN 1978. Image courtesy of the J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/233170

Mary Ann died in 1900 and William stayed on at Burn Brae until his death. William was buried at the Terang Cemetery.

John MILLMAN:  Died 2 August 1914 at Hamilton. John Millman was born in Leamington, Warwickshire, England in 1832.  He and his brother left England together, arriving in Melbourne in 1852.  John worked as a carpenter in Melbourne but his brother went “up country”.  By the time of the Eureka uprising in Ballarat in 1854, John was in Ballarat trying his luck as a miner.  Around 1855, John purchased a three month Miner’s Right for £2 and he later passed the document on to his family.  By 1861, John had arrived in Hamilton where his brother was residing.  It was in Hamilton John married Sarah Jane Knapp in 1878. A member of the Hamilton Rifle Club, John was also a keen horticulturist, competing at the various shows around the district.  Sarah died in 1910.

Mary LORD:  Died 23 August 1914 at Karabeal. Mary Lord was born in Wexford County, Ireland around 1833 and travelled to Portland with her parents around 1850.  They settled in that town and in 1860, Mary married Joseph Brewis.  At the time, Joseph was the manager at Mokanger Station near Cavendish and he returned there with Mary. After working at Mokanger for seventeen years, Joseph Brewis purchased land at nearby Karabeal they called Canridge and remained there for the rest of their lives.  Mary and Joseph had seven sons and one daughter. They were buried at the Cavendish Old Cemetery (below).



Edward HALL:  Died 8 August 1915 at Malvern.  Edward Hall was born in England around 1830.  He left Liverpool, England for Australia on the Satellite, arriving at Melbourne on 2 August 1851. He then sailed on the Red Rover to Port Fairy.  Edward worked as a tutor for the children of Messrs. Mills and Glare but in 1852 after the discovery of gold, he left for the Ballarat diggings with some other local men. It was short lived with Edward returning to Port Fairy the following year.  He next went to Brighton as a lay reader with the Church of England.  While there he had an encounter with bushrangers in the area where the suburb of Moorabbin is now located.  After that experience, Edward returned to Port Fairy, opening a school at Rosebrook and then teaching at Port Fairy.  He again returned to Brighton and then Nunawading where he remained until his death.

Mary Josephine ROACHE:  Died 24 August 1915 at Hamilton. Mary Roache was born in Ireland around 1860 and arrived in Australia in the mid-1870s.  Mary went to Hamilton and resided at the Town Hall Hotel in Gray Street when it was known as Mackey’s and the licensee was Michael Roache, possibly Mary’s brother.

"VIEW OF HA[?] [?]AM[?]TON VICTORIA." Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 - 1918) 17 April 1888: 2 (SUPPLEMENT TO THE HAMILTON SPECTATOR). Web. 19 Aug 2016 .


Mary married widowed travelling dentist John Mawson in Melbourne in 1887 and they had one daughter Veronica in 1892. After spending time in Melbourne, they moved back to Hamilton around 1901 and in 1902 John built a practice in Gray Street.  John Mawson died two years after Mary in 1917.

James SPRING:  Died 24 August 1916 at Bochara. James Spring was born in County Meath, Ireland in 1830. When eighteen, James sailed to Sydney, NSW aboard the Royal Saxon.  He then made his way south to Mount Gambier, South Australia. In February 1855, James arrived in Hamilton and settled north of the town at Bochara on the Grange Creek.  During February 1891, bad bushfires swept through the Bochara district impacting on James’ farm.  While his house was saved, he lost a lot of feed and farm machinery.

Thomas WHEATLEY:  Died 11 August 1917 at Terang.  Thomas Wheatley was born in Middlesex, England in 1827.  He joined the Royal Navy and during the 1840s spent time sailing around the South Seas. He joined the crew of the Aberfoyle and in 1854 landed a Geelong.  Thomas was able to take leave of his employment and went to the Ballarat goldfields but arrived in December around the time of the Eureka uprising. With unrest in Ballarat, Thomas continued on north to Creswick.  With no luck on the diggings,  Thomas eventually made his way to the Terang district and married in 1856 to Ellen McLaughlin, born in Kilkenny, Ireland.  He bought a bullock team and set up the first carrying business in Terang. Thomas was a member of the Salvation Army.  Ellen died around 1914 and eight of their children were still living at the time of Thomas’ death three years later.

Mary Ann Coughlan:  Died August 1917 at Caramut.  Mary Ann Coughlan arrived in Australia with her family in 1849.  She later met John Bendall the manager of John Moffat’s Hopkins Hills and The Gums.  They married in 1864 and lived at The Gums.  After that property was sold, the Bendalls ran a General Store and Post Office at Caramut and raised two sons and two daughters.  Mary Ann was widowed for more than thirty years with John dying in 1887 aged forty-seven but she remained in Caramut.

Janet CALDOW:  Died August 1918 at Caulfield.  Janet Caldow was born around 1832 in Ayrshire, Scotland. While still in Scotland she married Joseph Blain and they travelled to Australia aboard the Lord Nelson, arriving in Melbourne in 1855.  They went straight to the Ballarat diggings but soon took up a farm at Coghills Creek near Ballarat.  Around 1865, they moved to Garvoc, running a dairy farm and raising three sons and four daughters.  Joseph died around 1896.  Janet’s immediate family also immigrated from Scotland and lived long lives in Australia.  At the time of her death, the ages of her remaining five brothers and one sister totalled 425 years.

Adam Gordon LAIDLAW:  Died 1 August 1918 at Melbourne. Adam Laidlaw was born at Harrow in 1858 to Walter Laidlaw and Mary Gordon. Adam grew up on his father’s property Mundarra near Edenhope and later attended Hamilton and Western District College and obtained his matriculation.

MUNDARRA Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. Image no. H95.200/1068 http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/230342

MUNDARRA Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. Image no. H95.200/1068 http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/230342

Adam Laidlaw was associated with several properties including Ardachy near Branxholme where he lived for ten years.  He also owned Wootong Vale near Coleraine but in his later years leased the property out.  Never married, Adam was a philanthropist donating much money to charity including the Hamilton Hospital.  During the war years, he donated regularly to the War Loans Fund.  He was also a member of the Coleraine and Hamilton Racing Clubs.  Prior to the war, Adam went on a world trip but returned in 1915 and took up residence at the Melbourne Club in Collins Street.  In July 1918, Adam visited the Western District and returned to the Melbourne Club by the start of August.  On 1 August,  Adam was playing billiards when he fell ill.  He was rushed to hospital but later died.  Adam Laidlaw was buried at the Brighton Cemetery

Robert Ernest McARTHUR:  Died 29 August 1929 at Camperdown.  Robert McArthur was born in 1867 at Camperdown, a son of Margaret McLean and well-known pastoralist Peter McArthur of Meeningoort, Camperdown.  Robert attended Geelong College and was captain of the cricket and football teams and later went to Ormond College at Melbourne University, studying law.  He returned to Camperdown and helped his father manage Meeenigoort before purchasing  Koort Koort Nong (below) where he resided.

J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/217051

KOORT KOORT NONG, CAMPERDOWN. J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/217051

Robert was an amateur jockey, excelling at cross-country events and enjoyed polo.  In 1897 and 1898, he rode three winners at the Warrnambool Amateur Races. He also won the Melbourne Hunt Club Cup. Robert was a member of the Camperdown Turf Club and honourary starter at the Terang Racing Club and a founding member of the Western District Racing Association.  He was also a councillor on the Hampden Shire from 1898 to 1907. Another obituary for Robert is on the link here.

George GEMMELL: Died August 1945 at Camperdown.  Born around 1867 at Mortlake, George Gemmel moved to Cobden around 1880 working as a stonemason.  Works he was involved with included the foundations of Grand Central Hotel at Cobden, the Shire Offices and Poligolet (below) near Derrinallum).

 J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/217239

POLIGOLET J.T. Collins Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/217239

George married Elizabeth Porter in 1890 and the family were members of the Camperdown Presbyterian Church.  At the time of his death, George had four sons, one daughter, sixteen grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.




In Memory of James Harman

The following advertisement for the 1916 Hamilton Pastoral & Agriculture (P & A) Show reminded me it was the first Hamilton P & A show my ggg grandfather James Harman was not around for. In turn, it reminded me today is the 100th anniversary of James Harman’s death.

"Advertising" Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 - 1918) 29 August 1916: 5. .

“Advertising” Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 – 1918) 29 August 1916: 5. <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article133706580&gt;.

James Harman’s roles with the P & A included exhibitor, judge and committee member.  Over the years he exhibited Lincoln sheep, farm produce, and border collie dogs and judged produce and farm machinery.

LINCOLN SHEEP. Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. Image No. PRG 280/1/17/796 http://collections.slsa.sa.gov.au/resource/PRG+280/1/17/796

A LINCOLN SHEEP. Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria. Image No. PRG 280/1/17/796 http://collections.slsa.sa.gov.au/resource/PRG+280/1/17/796

Toward the end of the 1870s, when his oldest boys could take on duties on his farm, James had more “leisure” time so he threw himself into a few local farm related activities and the P & A was one of those. Respected by farmers and graziers alike, James could mix with all men including Hamilton Spectator owner George Rippon, grazier and politician John Thomson and businessmen Peter Learmonth, and Robert Stapylton Bree each prominent names in the annals of Hamilton and district.

"PASTORAL AND AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY." Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 - 1918) 17 May 1883: 4. .

“PASTORAL AND AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY.” Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 – 1918) 17 May 1883: 4. .

In 2011, I wrote The Leader of the Pack on the assumption if all my ancestors came together at one place and time it would be James Harman who would step to the front and lead the group.  Five years on and knowing so much more about James, I have no doubt.  At first I formed my opinion on his place in the Harman family as eldest son and his place in the community as a Wesleyan Methodist Church Local Preacher.  Now, with more issues of the Hamilton Spectator at Trove now giving me 248 tagged articles for James, I know his leadership went beyond the confines of family and the Byaduk community.  

Along with James’ P & A involvement, he was on several occasions President of the Hamilton Farmers Union in the 1880s and the founding president of the Byaduk Farmers Club.  He also was on the Byaduk State School committee, represented the Byaduk community at Dundas Shire meetings and as a leader in the church, attended Wesleyan Methodist Synods representing the Hamilton circuit, always considering the interests of the local church goers.


JAMES HARMAN AGED AROUND THIRTY-SEVEN (1867). Photo taken from the Byaduk Pioneer photo boards in the Byaduk Hall, compiled by Vern McCallum (website http://www.mccallum-collection.org/)

Throughout, James remained humble and during his Farmers’ Union presidency considered he was not worthy of leading the organisation.  But James also said if he joined a committee he gave it everything he had and he was true to his word.  James’ election to chairman of a meeting in 1881 to discuss a possible extension of the railway from Hamilton to Byaduk was just one occasion when James expressed those sentiments publicly.

"RAILWAY MEETING AT BYADUK." Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 - 1918) 15 October 1881: .

“RAILWAY MEETING AT BYADUK.” Hamilton Spectator (Vic. : 1870 – 1918) 15 October 1881: <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article226062215&gt;.

Such activities meant James was rarely home but always waiting patiently to all hours of the night was his wife Susan.  Susan shared his life from 1852 in Cambridgeshire, through their voyage to Australia as newlyweds and trusted James when he suggested moving north from Port Fairy to select their own piece of Australia.  It was Susan’s death only four months before his own that saw James’ health slip, taking away the vigour that served him so well for eighty-five years.  As Reverend Guard, the then Byaduk Wesleyan Methodist said in the obituary he wrote for James, “Earth had not such an interest for him…”