SOMERVILLE AND ITS PIONEERS.
While researching the origin of the name of Somerville, a town near the northern end of the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, Australia, I found some interesting things that might help family historians.
Valda Cole has claimed that the town's name had connections with Canada; two of the settlers in the area were Canadian and were responsible for the name of Canadian Bay and Jones and Hodgins Rds.
A Frankston historian said that the town was named after Sir William Meredith Somerville (who was elevated to the peerage in 1863, three years before the earliest mention of the locality name in "The Argus".)
Sir William became Baron Athlumney of Somerville and Dollarstown in County Meath, Ireland and in 1866, he was given the additional title of Baron Meredith of Dollarstown.
The ancestor of all the Somervilles in England was sir Gaultier de Somerville who accompanied William the Conqueror to England during the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Somervilles had hereditary titles in England, Scotland and Ireland.Sons who were not heirs usually forged careers in the army, navy or the professions (law, the Established Church etc) but many tried their luck in the colonies. The 19th and last English Lord Somerville was one of these.The Argus of 25-1-1870 reported that he had recently returned from Australia and was quite ill. He died on 28-8-1870 at Aston (East) Somerville, Gloucestershire.
SOME PIONEERING SOMERVILLE FAMILIES.
A SOMERVILLE FUNCTION.-The recent celebration at Solmerville in connection with the unveiling of the portraits of the late Messrs Jones and Unthank was worthy of the place.- Too often, men who have been benefactors of their district, have been passed over, and their labours forgotten; and it shows a fine spirit in the Somerville people, when they give this meed of re membrance to their old friends, and pioneers of the district. The men "who have blazed the track " do not always get their due in this respect. In addition it is a fine object lesson to the rising generation and inspires them to take a pride in their district and help it forward. (P.2, Mornington Standard, 6-7-1907.)
...Our Somerville Letter By Our Special Representative
Miss Thornell Honored A very pleasant social evening was spent by the members and friends of the local Presbyterian Church on the 29th ult, when a presentation was made to Miss Dorothy Thornell in recognition of her services as organist of the church. Mr J. F. Bell made the presentation-a silver cake dish -and spoke of the good and efficient services rendered by Miss Thornell for some time past. He said she had come to their assistance when they were in a fix and they felt deeply grateful for the help she had so cheerfully given them. (P.3, Frankston and Somerville Standard, 14-10-1921.)
SOMERVILLE -- THE LATE MARK THORNELL. . Sincere regret was expressed throughout the district when news was received here that Mr. Mark Thornell had died in a private hospital at Kiataia, New Zealand, on June 27, aged 53 years. Mr. Mark Thornell was born at "Sunny Cottage,". Somerville, his parents' farm. He was the third son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Mark Thornell, of "Frampton," Somerville. He went to New Zealand 33 years ago, and for the past 30 had been a member of the New Zealand police force, in which his energy and integrity won him promotion. He was noted for his ready wit and jovial manner. On three occasions he returned to his home town to visit his parents, the last trip being made ten years ago. His wife predeceased him by fourteen years. He leaves a daughter (Dorothy) to mourn her loss. (P.7, Frankston and Somerville Standard, 3-7-1936.)
PROGRESSIVE SOMERVILLE. THE NURSERIES AND ORCHARDS: No. IV, MR .THORNELL. One of the oldest, if not the very oldest, orchards in Somerville is that at present owned and occupied by Mr. T. Thornell, on the Eramosa road, within easy distance of the railway station. This orchard was established some 20 years ago by the present owner, whose father, Mr. John Thornell, senior, settled in the district with his family as far back as the year 1860, when the surrounding country was in a very wild state, it being by no means an uncommon occurrence in those days for wild kangaroos to be shot at their door. Mr. John Thornell, senior, who is at present 79 years of age, and hale, hearty, and strong, originally bought the site from the Crown and commenced operations in the cultivation of fruit trees almost immediately after his purchase, but did not turn his attention to the nursery business until some two years later, since when the nursery has been gradually extended, as many as 20,000 of nursery stuff being sent away in one year. Mr. T. Thornell, the present owner, has therefore had great experience in fruitgrowing and the raising of young trees, more especially so when it is taken into con- sideration that he was thrown into immediate contact with the business at the early age of 12 years, although it cannot be said that he took an active part until he arrived at the more mature age of 20 years, at which time he entered into partnership with his father, the partnership existing for 10 years, when Mr. J. Thornell, senior, retired from the business, which has since been carried on solely by Mr. T. Thornell. The orchard, which is situated at the rear and side of the homestead, Camillia Cottage, covers an area of from 15 to 20 acres, and is well stocked with trees of all kinds, which are in an excellent condition and bearing splendidly, as many as 2,000 cases of fruit being gathered during the present season. Peaches are grown extensively, the principal variety gone in for being the Royal George,which always commands a good market. Of this class of fruit 850 cases of fruit were forwarded to Melbourne during the present season, all of which were of first-class quality. Apricots are also gone in for extensively, but not on such a large scale as the peach. The quantity forwarded to the fruit salesmen this season was 180 cases. The principal class of fruit grown is however the apple, which is grown on a very large scale indeed,and for which there is always a good demand. The other varieties of fruit grown include pears, plums, cherries, quinces, almonds, and walnuts. All the fruit, when gathered, is packed in cases and forwarded by rail to agents in Melbourne, who in their turn dispose of it all over the colony. Prior to consigning the fruit to agents, it was the custom to convey it by road to the markets in Melbourne, which were visited as often as twice a week, and at times they were thus visited for a period of not less than three months without a spell, as many as 80 cases being taken at one time. The marketing was done by the present proprietor, who, it will thus be seen, has also had considerable experience in this direction. The price obtained for the fruit in the early days was, of course, much better than at the present time, and very often the takings at one market alone would amount to as much as ?30 or ?40. But Mr. T. Thornell has only attended Melbourne markets twice during the last ten years, his previous experience of fifteen years' marketing being quite enough for him, and at present he transacts most of his business through agents, although he does not debar himself from dealing with private individuals whenever the opportunity arises. This year the yield has been much better than for the previous two or three years, and in many instances it has more than doubled itself, the prices realised also being very satisfactory. The trees are all of good size and condition, and are planted about 20 feet apart each way. They range in age from 25 years down to 7 years, all bearing well. As much as ?20 a year is spent in manuring the orchard, stable manure, bone-dust, and dessicated night-soil being the kinds employed. The manuring generally takes place once a year, in the early spring, the plan adopted being to throw the manure on the ground and then plough it in. Mr. Thornell finds it most beneficial to change the manure every year. The nursery covers an area of 8 acres, and is situate almost immediately opposite the dwelling-house. At the present time it is estimated that it
contains between 60,000 and 70,000 young nursery stock of all varieties. As previously stated, the cultivation of nursery stock is gone in for on a more extensive scale than formerly, the young stuff being sent all over Victoria, a leading firm of nurserymen in Melbourne being supplied at one time with lines totalling 10,000. It is only to be supposed that a great amount of labour is required in the working of the orchard and nursery, at the present time Mr. Thornell employing two men, one of whom resides with his family all the year round, in a four-roomed cottage erected on the nursery, exclusive of his own and his son's labour. Great care has also to be exercised, the apples all being worked on blight-proof stocks, being first grafted in order to make them blight-proof and then budded to the varieties required. The birds have not been found to be so troublesome as of late. I might here state that Mr. Thornell has invented a simple and ingenious contrivance for the destruction of birds, which has been found to be very efficacious, as well as economical, and within the reach of all, as many as 250 minahs being caught in six weeks. It consists of a frame about 8 feet square, covered with ordinary netting wire, to which a line is attached. It is slightly raised up from the ground and a quantity of rotten fruit placed underneath, which attracts the minahs, who go underneath the netting in order to get at the fruit. The line is then pulled, with the result that the frame falls upon the birds, who are then removed and killed ad libitum. As many as 12 birds have been caught in this way at one time. It has the advantage also of saving powder and shot. Of course this is only of use when the fruit is gathered. The plan adopted for the preservation of the fruit held over is to place it upon layers of dry grass or ferns, which is first laid upon dry sandy soil, and then covered over with thatch grass. By adopting this plan it is found that the fruit is kept in good condition for a much longer time than by any other process. At the present time there are about 100 cases of apples being treated in this way. The orchard is ploughed over sometimes once a year, sometimes twice, but generally the latter-during the spring and autumn. Mr. Thornell is also very large land owner in the district, having in all about 400 acres, as much as ?14 an acre being given in some cases, besides which he possesses a great deal of property in the city, as well as in South Yarra and Prahran, all of which brings him in a fair rental. At one time he represented the district in the shire council, and, until a few weeks ago, he occupied the position of treasurer of the Somerville Fruitgrowers' Association, of which he is a prominent member. When Mr. Thornell, senr., first came into the district he had nothing beyond the land which he bought from the Crown. Mr. T. Thornell is one of few men who can say that he never paid one penny in rental during his lifetime. At one time he dabbled in speculation in buying and selling properties previous to the land boom and was very successful, the land boom not affecting him beyond decreasing the value of his pro perties. Mrs. T. Thornell, who was a very large prizetaker at the late shows, has a splendid collection of preserves of between 100 and 200 bottles of all varieties. The son was also successful in carrying off the first prize for the best pony at the show, out of 22 entries. (P.3, Mornington Standard, 16-7-1896.)
N.B. The journalist confused land boom with bust. Thornell sold during the boom,when his properties would have increased in value.
George Thornell was, with George Griffieth, a Justice of the Peace at Somerville in the early 1900's and also served as Coroner.
SOMERVILLE ACCIDENT TO MR. G. E. SHEPHERD, Senr. A rather serious accident befell our highly respected citizen, Mr. G. E. Shepherd, senr., of "Malurus." In driving a horse and jinker along Park street, it came in contact with a stump at the side of the road. The impact threw Mr. Shepherd out in front of the wheel, rendering him practically helpless. Fortunately, the pony was quiet, and remained stationary until help was forthcoming. Mr. Shepherd was badly bruised and shaken, though no bones were broken. He is under the case of Dr. Somers, of Mornington, and is now making favourable progress towards recovery.
(P.8, Frankston and Somerville Standard, 23-10-1925.)
PROGRESSIVE SOMER VILLE. THE NURSERIES AND ORCHARDS: No. I. MESSRS. W. A. SHEPHERD AND SONS. The pioneer nursery and orchard in Somerville is without doubt that of Messrs. W. A. Shepherd and Sons, which is situated on Shepherd's road some two miles distant from the local railway station. The homestead in all covers an area of 207 acres, 2 roods, 5 perches, 10 acres being reserved for the nursery and 45 acres being planted with fruit. On arriving at the homestead our representative could not help being struck by the busy scene which burst upon his view, and every where it was apparent that here at least the depression experienced of late was not felt. In a large shed four men, under the supervision of Mr. W. A. Shepherd, jun., were busily engaged packing young trees, which were to be subsequently dispatched to the Somerville railway station, and thence forwarded to their destination. So ex?????? that it is found necessary to employ on an average four men throughout the whole of the year. The output during the present season has been something enormous, a decided improvement in business being experienced on that of last year, a fact due no doubt to the recent shows held in the place, which have been the means of bringing the district so prominently before the whole of the colonies. The principal market of young trees for which the demand is greatest for apples, which goes to show that orchardists and fruit - growers generally are fully alive to the fact that the export of apples to the old country will be one of the leading industries of the country, the demand being principally for local requirements. Great care has to be exercised when picking the young trees for transit, being first carefully tied together with New Zealand flax, which is specially grown for the purpose, after which they are protected by layers of ordinary bush grass, which is obtainable in large quantities close at hand, the whole when complete having a cone-like appearance. The nursery is named the Perfection Nursery, and was established 30 years ago by Mr. W. A. Shepherd, senior, who is alive at the present time hearty and well, and, although 70 years of ago he still takes an active interest in all matters connected with the nursery and orchard. Mr. W. A. Shepherd, senior, is the pioneer nurseryman of the district, and no doubt feels conscious of a certain amount of pride in the fact that the opinion formed by himself 30 years ago as to the suitability of the soil at Somerville for fruitgrowing purposes has, by the flourishing conditions of the place at the present time, been so conclusively proved to be correct, more especially so as when he first selected the site on which the nursery and orchard now stands the country all around was heavily timbered bush land, which is in marked contrast to the well-cared for and prolific orchards now established throughout the whole of the district. Mr. W. A. Shepherd, senior, arrived in the colony 38 years ago last December, when comparatively a young man. He will be 70 years of age next January, and, as previous stated bears his age well. He is a thoroughly trained orchardist, having served an apprenticeship of seven years when a lad under the head gardener of Middleton Park, England, then owned by the Earl of Jersey, and was there when the Earl brought his bride home. After serving his apprenticeship, Mr. Shepherd, senior, was for two years gardener at Holland Park, Kensington, England, the residence of Lord Holland, after which he filled the position of gardener at various other places. It will thus be seen that Mr. Shepherd, senior, is an authority on matters connected with horticulture. Mrs. Shepherd, who is some three years her husband's senior, is also alive and hearty, although she does not bear her age so well as her husband, but still, like him, she takes a lively interest in the busy scene around her. The management of the business is divided between the two sons, Mr. W. A. Shepherd, junior, and Mr. George Shepherd, who have inherited their father's good qualities regarding the culture of the soil, a fact which is plainly evident by the splendid specimens of trees to be seen in the orchard. The bulk of the work devolves upon Mr. George Shepherd, who attends to all the correspondence (which at the present time is very extensive) and the dispatching of orders, etc., while Mr. W. A. Shepherd, junior, who was recently elected to the high position of president of the Somerville Fruit growers' Association, attends to the more immediate work connected with the nursery and orchard, Mr. G. Shepherd, also bearing his share of the burden. Both work together with a will. The nursery occupies an area of about 10 acres, and at the present time it is estimated to contain about 200,000 young trees in all stages and of all varieties, which are planted in rows, each row containing from 700 to 800 young shoots. Even to an amateur the vast amount of work necessary is apparent, each shoot being grafted on to blight proof stocks, all of which are of even growth, and the soil free from weeds, the whole presenting a perfect picture, and one which any nurseryman might well feel proud of. The orchard, comprising 45 acres, is situated behind the nursery, and is a very fine one indeed. From year to year it is extended in order to have fresh trees coming into bearing, as well as to keep up the quality of the fruit. Apricots are grown very extensively, 10 acres of this fruit being planted. The crop from these trees last season was very great, as many as eight cases of fruit being obtained from one single tree. The total crop of apricots for the season just over was estimated at about 11 tons, as many as 7 tons being sent away in one day. Numerous varieties of apples are grown, amongst the number being the world -famed Shepherd's Perfection, which was first raised on this nursery thirty years ago, and from which the nursery derives its name, and not as many suppose, from the idea that the nursery is perfection in itself. The Shepherd's Perfection is an apple with which Mr. Shepherd's name will be always associated, and which is so well known for its many good qualities. The original tree, now 30 years old, was raised by Mr. W. A. Shepherd, senior, from the pip of a Blenheim Orange apple, and is still vigorous and healthy, it being one of the sights of the place, the elder Mr. Shepherd pointing it out with pride to all visitors. Last season eight cases of fruit were got off this tree. Peaches, pears, plums, and numerous other varieties of fruit are also grown very extensively, plums being greatly in evidence, a large demand in that class of fruit being experienced. The fruit grown is of splendid quality, the firm being large prizetakers at the late Somerville show, carrying off the Champion Challenge trophy for the best collection of fruits grown in Victoria, as well as the first prize for the best collection of twelve varieties of apples suitable for export, and also carried off six other first prizes, two seconds, and one third. As great attention has been paid to the pruning the trees are remarkably handsome and well grown specimens and are singularly free from blight or disease of any kind whatever,a fact due no doubt to the great care that is taken of them and to the unusually dry season last year. The trees in the orchard are planted 20ft apart each way, thus allowing them plenty of room for growth. Although most of the trees have been planted a number of years, the necessity for artificial manuring is not yet apparent. All the farm yard manure raised on the place is, however, used in the orchard, a good number of the trees receiving a good dressing every year. The system adopted of using the manure is to clear away the soil from the stem and top roots, the roots being bared for 3 feet or 4 feet from the stem, the trenches formed being left open for some time, after which they are filled with manure, the soil being again thrown in on top. The firm intend to go in for the use of dessicated nightsoil, which they believe will have a beneficial effect on the yields of the trees. The orchard ???and is ploughed on an average of about twice a year, generally in August and about the end of October, ordinary single-furrow ploughs being used, while for working the soil the acme harrow and a cultivator made by Mr. D. M. Bett, the local blacksmith, is used. The land is worked very frequently during the spring and summer right up to the time when the fruit has attained such a size as to be liable to injury from the horses and cultivating implements. Great care is exercised in picking and sorting the fruit for market, the main object being to produce as good a sample of fruit as possible, as well as to avoid the fruit being bruised. The apples which are held over for disposal later on in the season are all stored in cases in the fruit room, instead of the practice usually adopted of placing the fruit on shelves or trays, which the Messrs. Shepherd do not approve of, as they find that by heaping up the apples very often results in many being bruised, and in a very short time they become unfit for market. In order to allow of the free circulation of air, the cases are placed about 2 inches apart, and are stacked one on top of other. Vegetables are also grown, but only for home consumption. When Mr. Shepherd, senior, first came to the colony he brought with him some lettuce seed (Paris Cross), which he has kept ever since. A splendid specimen of rhubarb (Topp's Winter), about 2.5 feet in length, was shown our representative, the rhubarb being of a beautiful rich red colour. At the last show the firm obtained first prize for the best brace of cucumbers. Not withstanding the immense amount of labour involved in the working of the nursery and orchard, sufficient time is found for the cultivation of flowers and ornamental plants, a large plot of ground, close to the homestead and in front of the nursery, being specially reserved for that purpose. Mr. George Shepherd is the fortunate possessor of a splendid collection of stuffed water and land birds, most of wh:ch have been shot in the neighbourhood, many being of very rare species. Each class of birds are enclosed in a separate case, each bird being appropriately mounted, the whole collection being valued at ?150. Included in the variety is a little Tabuan water crake, which is a very rare species indeed, but the two birds of which Mr. George Shepherd is most proud of are the tiny Little Bittern and a beautiful Australian White Egret, the Little Bittern standing out in marked contrast to the tall and noble-looking White Egret with its snowy white plumes. These two birds are enclosed in a separate glass globe. The crafty Renard is also to be found occupying the place usually allotted to him. A visit to the homestead would not be complete without a visit being made to the pantry of Mrs. George Shepherd, where, stored away on shelves, are to be found the collection of preserves so successfully shown at the town-hall, Melbourne, and at 8omerville and Cranbourne. The preserves are in just as good a state as when they were first preserved, and form a collection which any housewife might well be proud of. [xC Dn cotIIusao.] (P.3, Mornington Standard, 25-6-1896.)
N.B. A couple of lines, unable to be read because of a crease in the newspaper, are indicated by question marks. Mistakes, such as a redundant "of", are the journalist's not mine. I presume he means the crafty reynard (fox.)
See comment 6. (Oh Noes struck again!)
Leila Shaw,author of THE WAY WE WERE, was a Brunnings girl and her history gives much detail about the family,the St Kilda connection and so on. Sadly the soldiers' memorial park donated by the family has been sold to Aldi.
MR. JOHN BRUNNING. The death of Mr. Jno. Brunning, of Somerville, on Monday came as a shock to his many friends in that district. Deceased had been in ill health for some weeks, but his death was not anticipated. Mr. Brunning came to Somerville about 62 years ago, when he was a toddler of three years. For the grea ter part of his life he had conducted the well-known nursery business of J. Brunning and Sons. Burial took place at Frankston cemetery on Wednesday afternoon, when a large number of Somerville and district residents attended. The funeral service was conducted by the Rev. D. A. White and Rev. C. R., C. Tidmarsh. Rev. Tidmarsh, who had known deceased for many years, gave an impressive address at the grave. Messrs. Herbert, George and Stanley. Brunning (cousins of the deceased), William Shepherd, James and Benja min Caldwell acted as pall-bearers. The funeral was conducted-by Mr. H. Gamble. Deceased leaves three sons and one daughter (Mrs. Ryan). His wife and two daughters predeceased him. (P.4, Frankston and Somerville Standard, 7-9-1928.)
The will of the late Mr Alexander Scott, of Somerville, has been lodged for probate. In it the testator's two sons, James and John, are bequeathed the properties in the parish of Mooroo- duc, subject to the payment by the former of the sum of ?100 to deceased's daughter, Caroline, wife of Charles Unthank, of Bittern; and the latter of the sum of ?50 to the second daughter, Ann, wife of Wil- liam Firth, of Moorooduc. The bal- ance of the estate, after payment of debts, &c., is bequeathed in equal por- tions to the two sons and two daugh- ters named above. The estate is valued at ?1825, and the female branch of the beneficiaries are any thing but satisfied with the portions allowed them. (P.2, Mornington Standard, 17-10-1903.) Also see Firth.
Seldom has Somerville community been oftener called upon to mourn the loss of well known and respected residents than within the last two years. Another of the sturdy old pioneers passed away on Friday evening (20th. inst.), in the person of Mr. William Firth. The end was not altogether unexpected, as Mr. Firth has been in failing health for some time. The deceased, who was a native of the Island of Orkney, N.B., came to this colony when 16 years of age, and spent some four years at Bendigo, Maryborough, and other diggings. He then came to this district, and for a few years, as a partner with his brothers, John and James, he carried out several road and other large contracts. After purchasing the property on which he died (Orkney Farm), Mr. Firth gave up contract work, and has ever since devoted his energies, with marked success, to mixed farming, being one of the very first to attempt wheat growing in these parts. He was for some time successful in getting some very large returns per acre. His horses were well known, and always commanded a big figure, being specially sought after by Brighton market gardeners, who often bought them unbroken in the paddock. Sheep and cattle were also successfully raised. During Mr. Firth's long residence here of 53 years, he had seen vast changes, and had himself during his strenuous life become the owner of somewhere about 1000 acres in the district. Though a keen Scot at a bargain, deceased had by his uprightness, kindliness of heart and integrity, won the respect of all who knew him as a kindly neighbor, a staunch, friend, and a just foe. Although never taking any prominent part in public affairs Mr. Firth always had the welfare of the district at heart. The deceased leaves a widow, four daughters and one son to mourn the loss of a loving husband and fond father. Mrs. Firth is the daughter of another very old pioneer, Mr. Sandy Scott, who died a few years ago. The funeral on Sunday was very largely attended, some 40 vehicles and 12 horsemen being present, in addition to many relatives, including Messrs. John, James, and Joseph Firth (curator Macedon Nurseries). There were also present several leading councillors of the Mornington and Frankston and Hastings shires, and many old resi- dents. (P.2, Mornington Standard, 28-12-1907.)
Death. MURRAY--On the 7th August, at her residence, Somerville, Elizabeth, the dearly beloved wife of Charles Murray, and only daughter of James Grant, post- master, Somerville. Deeply regretted.
(P.2, Mornington Standard, 16-8-1890.)
OBITUARY MR. GEORGE ALFRED GRANT Mr. George Alfred Grant died on Thursday, November 28, at his resi dence, Eramossa Road, Somerville. Mr. Grant was born at Somerville, and lived there all his life. He was a well-known orchardist and nursery man, and won many prizes at local shows. He was also interested in all sport, and won many trophies at foot running, high jumping, rifle shooting and cricket. He was a trustee of the early Presbyterian church, also member of the Fruit growers' Association, , Manchester Unity Independent Order of Oddfellows, and past director of Cool stores. Mr. Grant's parents,, the late Mr. and Mrs. James Grant, were early settlers of Somerville, and were in charge of the first post office at Somerville. He was held in high esteem by a large circle of friends. His wife, six daughters,and two sons survive him. .The funeral took place on Saturday, November 30, the remains being interred in the Frankston Cemetery. Many floral tributes were made. There was a large attendance at the funeral, the district being well represented. Pall bearers were: Cr. Webb, Mesrrs W. P. Hutchinson, Geo Richardson, Chas. Thornell, D. Heywood, Theo Grant, Gus Murray, W. Monk. Coffin bearers were: Messrs. Ray Harding, Dan. Heywood, H. Brown, G. Gamble, L. Smith, sons-in-law, Ray Grant nephew. (P.7, Standard, 5-12-1946.)
Obituary MR JAS. GRANT, SEN. It is with regret we have to chronicle the demise, at the advanced age of 83, of one of Somerville's oldest and most respected residents, in the person of Mr Jas. Grant, sen., which occurred at his late residence at Somerville on Sunday last. By Mr Grant's death Somerville and district lose one of the very oldest and most highly respected residents. Mr Grant and Mr W. A. Shepherd (who died only a few weeks ago) were in the early days friends and neighbours in Melbourne, and came down and settled at Somerville together many years ago. Deceased for some time had charge of the post office when it was situated at the Somerville station. Mr Grant has been a successful and prosperous fruitgrower and nursery man, and has given each of his five sons a splendid start in life. By his honesty of purpose, strict integrity, hard work, and kindly nature, Mr Grant won the esteem and regard of every resident of the district. The respect in which Mr Grant was held was evinced on the day of the funeral, when, in the teeth of a blinding storm of wind and rain, one of the largest corteges seen at Somerville wended its way to the Frankston cemetery.
(P.3, Mornington and Dromana Standard, 1-5-1909.)
MR. J. E. MURRAY. Mr. James Edmund Murray, of Somerville, died at his late residence last Sunday at the age of 68 years. The late Mr. Murray was a well known resident of Somerville, and, though he had no family and his wife predeceased him, leaves many relatives in that district. Burial took place in Frankston cemetery on Monday last. The service was read by Rev. D. A. White, of Somerville. The coffin was borne to the grave by Messrs. J. E. Sage, E. J. Murray, S. C. Martin and F. S. Murray, all of whom are nephews of deceased. The pall-bearers were Messrs. H. Jones, S. W. M. West, and J. Hutchinson. The funeral was conducted by Mr. H. J. Gamble, of Frankston. Mr. Augustus Murray, Mr. John Murray, Mrs. Ross, Mrs. Harboard, Mrs. Harkness, Mrs. Batterham and Miss Jane Murray are the living brothers and sisters of deceased.
(P.1, Frankston and Somerville Standard, 3-8-1929.) See GRANT.
N.B. The Murrays granted much land on the south side of Mornington-Tyabb Rd,in the parish of Bittern,and much involved in the butchering business, seem to be unrelated.
SOMERVILLE. Mr. J. Murray, who sold his orchard property to Mr. Wood some time ago, has just purchased the property of Mr. McCalman (better known as McGurk's.) Mr. Murray wandered about we hear looking for a property in other parts, but has found nothing to beat Somerville. (P.2, Mornington Standard, 21-9-1907.)
The pioneers' properties will be discussed later but I will describe McGurk's now.
On 12-5-1890, Edward McGurk was granted crown allotment 61, parish of Moorooduc. Consisting of 203 acres, its northern and southern boundaries were those of Witchwood Park (Melway 148 B6), but it fronted both Webbs Lane and Jones Rd. Part of the allotment (61C of 28 acres,north of Pottery Lane)seems to have been granted to F.P.Wagner as a Closer Settlement farm.
OBITUARY ---0-- MISS M. MURRAY. The death occurred on Saturday of Miss Madge Murray, aged 12 years, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. G. Murray, of Somerville. Although so young, her bright disposition had won her many friends, 'and her parents received many beautiful floral tributes and other expressions of sympathy. The funeral took place in the Frankston Cemetery ,on Sunday. The cortege was formed by a large gathering of relatives and .friends. The casket was carried by Messrs. S. Scott, J. E. Sage, S. C. Martin and F. Martin... The pall bearers were Messrs. C. W. Roach, C. Barber, W.Hutchinson and C. Thornell. The Rev. S. O. Seward read the burial service. Mr. Hector Gamble had charge of the funeral arrangements.
(P.4, Frankston and Somerville Standard,7-5-1937.)
I must be careful here because I think there may have been more than one Martin family. Leila Shaw has quite a lot of detail in THE WAY WE WERE about the Martin's Corner store.The grocer family seems to have arrived in the early 1900's while the Blacksmith, W.Martin, was there in the 1890's and was involved in the early days of the Fruitgrowers' Association as was Betts, another blacksmith, who was the Secretary and the caretaker of the Mechanics' Institute.
Somerville have strengthened their team and improved their play, and should be able to hold their own against any of the local teams. Martin, Somerville, is deserving of special mention for his play. He is a decided acquisition to the ranks of the fruitgrowers. (P.2, Mornington Standard, 31-5-1902.)
The transfer of a grocer's license from Amelia Holmes to E. A. Martin, of Somerville, was approved.
(P.2, Mornington Standard,8-3-1902.)
Messrs E. A. and A. E. Martin, general storekeeper and wine and spirit merchants, of Somerville, notify that they are carrying an exceptionally large stock of well-selected goods. Quality combined with cheapness is their motto. The firm makes a speciality of patent medicines, every well-known line being kept.
(P.4, Mornington Standard, 18-10-1902.)
From various articles, it seems as if the Hutchinsons were market gardeners in Stumpy Gully Rd, Moorooduc and were involved in the early days of the Somerville Fruitgrowers' Association.They were probably near Mornington-Tyabb Rd as W.Hutchinson was described as being of Tyabb, as was William Murray whose property was in the parish of Bittern near Edward Jones' Spring Farm.There must have been two cousins,one dying in 1895 and another, possibly also John, experiencing difficulty a couple of years later.It is not known whether they were related to the Hutchinsons of the Frankston gasworks.
I regret to record the death of Mr. John Hutchinson, at the age of 30, at his residence, Moorooduc, on Thursday evening last. The deceased had been for the past two years a martyr to chronic sciatica, and although every medical attendance in the city was obtained at various periods, the deceased experienced little or no relief from his sufferings. The end was not altogether unexpected, and at 6 p.m. on Thursday he quietly passed away. The funeral was hold on Saturday, and was followed by a large number of friends around the district, comprising 21 vehicles, 30 horseman and 31 members of the A.O.F., who walked in front of the hearse, of which society the deceased was an old member. A widow and son are left to mourn the loss of the departed.
(P.2, Mornington Standard, 27-6-1895.)
The Somerville Correspondent wrote:
The market gardener's life is not one of unalloyed pleasure. At Mordialloc on Saturday last Mr. J. Hutchinson had the misfortune to lose sight of his horse while enjoying a few minutes in the arms of Morpheus. After having tracked it for some miles he was unable to come up with it and had to walk the best part of the way home. (P.2, Mornington Standard, 8-4-1897.)
Sale of Property.
Mornington Standard (Vic. : 1889 - 1908) Saturday 6 September 1902 Edition: MORNING. p 4 Article
... Sale of Property. The well-known Westernport orchard and and nursery at Somerville, the property of the late John Holt and leased by Mr Chas. Barber is to be submitted for sale by auction by Messrs Graham and Styles on Wednesday next at noon.
We shall soon have to get iron safes to lock poultry up in at night. The cold weather has no doubt increased sly reynards always too keen appetite. One night last week after gobbling, up one or two clutches of chickens belonging to Mr Barber in mere devilment he killed eleven other fowls. Poultry farming under these conditions certainly does not pay.(P.2, Mornington Standard, 19-4-1900.)
Mr Barber almost lost a valuable horse last week through its slipping backwards down the steep bank of a creek. It took 8 men some time to liberate the poor brute. (P.3, Mornington Standard, 15-9-1898.)
The Barbers were much involved with the Fruitgrowers' Association from 1899 and the Methodist Church by 1896. A court case re a fire (P.3,Mornington Standard, 24-3-1898) leads me to believe that Charles was near the corner of Bungower and Lower Somerville Rds.He lived near the Clarkes and the accused.
Somerville is at the junction of three parishes with Moorooduc separated from Frankston by Eramosa Rd and both of those separated from Tyabb by Jones and Grant Rds respectively. The name of Sage is more often connected with Baxter but the family was also associated with Somerville. Ben Baxter's Carrup Carrup Run was not very far north of Eramosa Rd and when it was broken up and sold after being surveyed, the Sage family and the family of surveyor, Robert Hoddle, both related to Ben Baxter by marriage,received grants adjoining the pre-emptive right. William Firth's grant over Eramosa Rd from Orkney Farm adjoined a Baxter grant. Thus a Sage removal to Somerville was hardly a departure to parts unknown. By 1921, J.E.Sage was on Alfred Jones' Almond Bush Stud, carrying on the horse breeding tradition.
To Stand this season at Somerville At "Almond Bush" Travel if Required. The Champion Pony Stallion MALDON BEAUTIFUL Dappl.rt " foaled 1910, with good, clean, flat bone and plenty of muscle, style and action and stands about 18.2 hands high. Maldon is by Boy out of Fannie. Roy is by Fauntleroy. Maldon's dam, Fannie, is by Silver Prince, grand sire Silver King (imp). Maldon gained the Society's Champion Ribbon at Frankston in 1914, and in 1919 at Royal Show, Melbourne, First in Class as Sire of Harness Ponies, and Champion for Best Pony. TERMS...... For further particulars apply to J. E. SAGE, Somerville. Also at Stud the Pure Bred Berkshire Boar bred by Dookie College ...... FeI lOs Shorthorn Bull At Stud .... Fee 10l.
(P.1s,Frankston and Somerville Standard, 4-11-1921.)
MATRON A. M. SAGE, APPOINTED MATRON-IN-CHIEF HONOR FOR SOMERVILLE WOMAN A little over 12 months ago, Mat ron Sage, of Somerville, arrived in the Middle East, and in a letter to her brother, Mr Arthur Sage, receiv ed this week, she tells of her appointment as Matron-in-Chief of the A.I.F. This is a great honor to a local woman and we will let Matron Sage tell her own story: "You will see by the above address that I have gone up the scale a bit. Miss Wilson was ill and has return ed to Australia and word was sent to me to report immediately to head quarters, where I was told I had to leave my hospital and take over the duties of Principal Matron. ETC. (P.3, Standard, 20-6-1941.)
"OH NOES" AGAIN. SEE COMMENT 7. OH NOES. SEE COMMENT 8.
OH NOES. SEE COMMENT 9.
At least one of our local residents have been helping to buy out the Hey field estate. Mr A. Warren has ob- tained a very nice block said to be one of the most picturesque of the lot.
(P.3, Mornington Standard, 2-11-1899.)
OH NOES. SEE COMMENTS.
OH NOES. SEE COMMENTS.
on 2011-07-24 07:14:46
Itellya is researching local history on the Mornington Peninsula and is willing to help family historians with information about the area between Somerville and Blairgowrie. He has extensive information about Henry Gomm of Somerville, Joseph Porta (Victoria's first bellows manufacturer) and Captain Adams of Rosebud.