THE AMERICAN BACKGROUND GENEALOGY OF THE GRIFFITH FAMILY OF DROMANA, VIC., AUST.
I still haven't given up on the almost impossible task of trying to find the article in which Watson Eaton testified that he'd never attended university or had any medical training. Another go found the following. The extract is from page 21.
THERE'S A CHANCE THAT THE HURLEY FAMILY OF BALNARRING AND SORRENTO WAS RELATED TO REBECCA, ABRAHAM'S WIFE.
Family Tree Maker - Genealogy.com
Esther Davis and William Griffith were witnesses at a wedding at Sadsbury. Monthly Meeting ...... Watson Eaton was a despondent at his inquest. He wrote: "The
Notes for JONAH GRIFFITH:
Abraham is the son of Jonah Griffith, grandson of Abraham & Elizabeth
This is the story of Abraham. He was born in Lancaster County, PA in the year
1816. He is reported as being "the captain of a whaling ship out of Philadelphia"
but I can find nothing to prove this. He met his wife Rebecca Hurley in PA and
they were married in Blair County. Sometime after this they went on the Oregon
Trail but apparently came back to PA. They had five children, but when they came
to Australia, they only had three with them so presumably the other two had died.
On the seventh day of March 1855 a small barque entered the heads and sailed
into Pot Phillip Bay. She was the "Nimrod" out of New York. Her captain was G.C.
Whiting and she carried a cargo of wheels, lobsters, furniture, scales and seventy
passengers. The Nimrod weighed in at 450 tons, built in Maine in 1849. Aboard
the Nimrod was Abraham Griffith, his wife Rebecca and three children; Arthamece
aged 15, John Calvin aged 9 and Jonah aged 7. Abraham and Rebecca had two
other sons but as they did not come to Australia it is presumed they had died. The
two boys who presumably died were William Harris and Sylvester. Family lore has
it that Abraham was interested in gold and 1855 was the height of the Victoria
Gold rush. They are believed to have arrived with a "black servant" and a
With the sub-division of Crown Lands in 1854, more settlers were attracted to the
district, among them being Richard Watkins, an Englishman who is credited with
building the first house in the township. In 1857 he was joined by Abraham
Abraham grew a crop of maize that was the "wonder of the district." They lived on
rented land on Jamison's Survey until the Land Act of 1869 brought changes
allowing settlers to select tracts of less than 350 acres, and those who lived on
the Survey made their application. In 1879 Abraham had 150 acres. In censuses
and old books of the time he is variously described as a farmer, builder and
contractor. He and Rebecca had no children born in Australia. Unfortunately little
is known of Abraham in Victoria. In 1861 he is a patron of the National School,
whatever that was, perhaps a forerunner of the State Schools. In 1861, he signed
a document praising a schoolteacher. On this document is also the signature of his
friend and partner, Watson Eaton. Nothing more is heard of Abraham until March
1874 when he had an accident at Mt. Martha and was injured from which injuries
he died a few days later.
Watson Eaton was a despondent at his inquest. He wrote: "The deceased Abraham
Griffith about 58 years old was my partner. I saw him the day before he was
brought by Mr. Wiseman. His wife and I found him a good deal agitated. The next
three days he was going about and he was able to explain what had happened to
him. He said the horses ran away with him and that he kept them on the road but
could not keep them away from the saplings. He said the accident would not have
happened but for the saplings."
Abraham is buried in the cemetery at Dromana, as is Rebecca. In company with
about twenty other old graves they are kept tidy by the Dromana Historical
Society. Unfortunately no records have survived as to which grave is which and the
sea winds have worn the inscriptions from the headstones. Jonah is buried there
with his wife as is John Calvin and his wife and Abraham's great grandson Ves
(Sylvester) and his wife.
Child of JONAH and ELIZABETH HARRIS is:
GRIFFITH, b. Abt. 1816; d. Australia; m. REBECCA HURLEY; d. Australia.
on 2015-02-10 16:44:02
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.