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NOTICE.-ELECTRIC TELEGRAPH WORKS.- I hereby give notice to all land proprietors on the Melbourne and Cape Schanck road, via St. Kilda,Brighton, Frankston, and Dromana, to CUT, or cause to be cut, all TREES on their land within the distance of 20 (twenty) feet from the LINE of TELEGRAPH now being constructed on the above mentioned road, in accordance with the Act for Electric Telegraphs,Vict. 17, No. 22, Clauses 3, 4, and 5. In default of the aforesaid being done, the same shall be done at their risk, and I will not be responsible for damage to fences, &c..
(Signed) E. L. CROWELL, Contractor.(P.8, Argus, 19-9-1859.)

line of telegraph from Melbourne to Cape Schanck, 60 miles, at 46l. per mile, E. L.Crowell, 2,760l., additional mileage to be charged at the same rate ; line of telegraph between Melbourne and Williamstown, additional mile-
age as per gazetted contract, No. 447, E, L.Crowell, 1,280l. 14s. 4d.(P.5, Argus, 17-9-1859.)

It was in 2010 that I saw a map showing the zigzag route of the electric telegraph through Jamieson's special survey in Rosalind Peatey's PINE TREES AND BOX THORNS, apparently on page 20. If my memory serves me correctly, the line reached the south boundary of the Survey directly opposite today's Ponderosa Place, the boundary between Samuel Rudduck's grant (Karadoc) and William Cottier's grants that became Walter Gibson's Glenholm.

Early photos of the road around Anthony's Nose, post 1880's show telegraph poles and I had always assumed that the telegraph line had passed through Dromana en route to the fort at Pt. Nepean. It is now obvious that the original line was to the Telegraph Station at Cape Schanck which was soon after relocated to Flinders where it operated for many decades, William Seagrave* being prominent in its history. The line to Cape Schanck was intended to relay shipping intelligence to Melbourne and the most direct route from the southern boundary of the Survey was TODAY'S FREEWAY. Palmerston Avenue was obviously intended to link up with Clarendon St at Burrell Road, (the boundary between Dromana Township and the Arthurs Seat pre-emptive right, which was supposed to climb the cliff from Anthony's Nose to link with the north-south section of Latrobe Pde.)

As most travellers to the Peninsula would travel by craft plying the bay and those hoofing it would go through Dromana on the beach road as far as they could (the ti tree swamp below the present bowls club being the first obstacle), the latter (at the time Crowell was constructing the line) would wet their whistles at Richard Watkin's SCURFIELD HOTEL on the east corner of Permien St and Esplanade before veering uphill along Latrobe Parade to pick up the road to Cape Schanck. Thus nobody really used Clarendon St., the original three chain road through the Dromana area. The only evidence of it for many many decades probably consisted of ruts made by Crowell's heavy dray which carried the telegraph poles to the appropriate locations. The Desailley boys may have used this track when they went to Tootgarook to build some huts for Edward Hobson in 1838. (I SUCCEEDED ONCE, Marie Hansen Fels.)

The first proposed CONSTRUCTION on Palmerston Avenue was a railway line to Portsea in the boom times of the late 1880's. No doubt an argument deployed by advocates of the railway was rapid carriage of troops to the batteries at Pt. Nepean to ward off a much feared invasion. The line was obviously surveyed along Palmerston Avenue which was the southern boundary of Charles Barnett's grant (c/a 13, section 1 Kangerong), across today's Jetty Rd from the 1927 Panoramic estate (Captain Ross's grant.) The railway never eventuated but Barnett's grant was henceforth called the RAILWAY ESTATE.

If there was a fault in Crowell's telegraph line, finding it may have involved a bit of riding but the line was plain for all to see. Not so the submarine cable to Cape Schanck which apparently came via Tasmania and King Island. Here is the link to a marine survey near King Island done by M.G.H.W.Ross, the aforementioned Captain Ross.
Chart of Bass' Strait : shewing the line of submarine cable / soundings by Commander M.G.H.W. Ross, R.N. Marine Surveyor

Just one decade after the patent for the COPYING ELECTRIC TELEGRAPH had been lodged, Cowell's construction was underway. This 1849 article stated that messages could be transmitted over ANY DISTANCE but the writer would hardly have imagined that would include places separated by sea.

There seem to be no reports of the submarine cable reaching Cape Schanck by 1859, all the reports of this being in 1869 when submarine cable take 2 reached Flinders. The Cape Schanck office opened in 1861.

During the past year communication has been extended to the following places, and offices were opened thereat on the dates undermentioned :
Cape Schanck, 6th September ; Schnapper Point,22nd March ; Wahgunyah*, 8th February ; Chiltern, 28th March ; Yackandandah, 28th February ; Hamilton, 23rdMarch; Taradale, 30th November; Woodend, 23rd October; Spencer-street Station, 28th October ; Inglewood, 25th October ; Stawell, 7th October; Carisbrook, 6th March;
Clunes, 8th February.
report of the General Superintendent of Electric Telegraph

I'd thought the line to Cape Schanck was to provide communication with England. However I thought of the great race to the north in 1860, the Burke and Wills tragedy and the "Alice", and turned to Wikipedia.
1872 - Port Darwin: The first connection from Australia to the world by submarine cable was the above-mentioned Java to Port Darwin link. In short time the cable failed and was finally restored to service with connection again to England in October 1872, a four-month break in service. The cable had been initially brought ashore at Darwin in November 1871, with Australia’s first international telecommunications message being received on 19 November..[7][8]

Did you know that the original name of Darwin and the name of the declared HIGHWAY (three chain road*)through Dromana were the same?
On 5 February 1869, George Goyder, the Surveyor-General of South Australia, established a small settlement of 135 people at Port Darwin between Fort Hill and the escarpment. Goyder named the settlement Palmerston, after the British Prime Minister Lord Palmerston.
(*See the Kangerong parish map. Most government roads were one chain wide. Palmerston Avenue is three times the width of the beach road.)

The laying of the Tasmanian submarine cable, which was commenced on Tuesday last, has by this time probably been completed, and in a few hours the two colonies will be in electric communication with each other. The Victorian end of the cable was landed on the Flinders beach within a few yards of the pier, and a temporary office has
been erected there. The line between Flinders and Cape Schanck is not yet completed, but the contract has been taken, and the contractor is bound to finish his work within three weeks, there being only seven miles of
wire to be constructed. The Tasmanian end of the cable will be landed at the mouth of the Tamar, and the central office will be in Georgetown. An account of the proceedings in laying tho Victorian end will be found in the supplement.(P.4, Argus, 23-4-1869.)

PHOTO OF ROSALIND'S MAP. There is no need to photograph this because the route of the electric telegraph line is shown on the parish of Kangerong map.


Note the width of Palmerston Avenue on both maps.

SEGRAVE, William, Flinders.
Born in Surrey he was engaged in the old country in electrical telegraph work (much detail.) He came to Autralia with the expedition to lay a submarine cable from Tasmania to Victoria in 1869 and has been in charge of the Victorian terminus ever since.He is now local superintendent of both land and cable departments and postmaster.An associate of the Telegraph and Electrical Society, he was married in 1873 to Miss A.Foy and has a family. (N.B. This is my summary of William's 1888 biography, not Alexander Sutherland's flowery prose. William's biography is in volume 2. I did not note the page number but it would be soon after Henry Prosser's biography on page 398.)

Born circa 1850 and directly descended from aristocracy from the time of the Domesday Book,William was about 19 when he left for Australia. He and Ann (nee Foy)had at least three daughters, the eldest dying aged 21 in 1900. (The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic. : 1864 - 1946) Saturday 17 November 1900 p 55 Family Notices)
Ann gave birth to a son in 1876 but no marriage notice has been found.

Married twice he died at Elsternwick in 1933 at the age of 83. He and his second wife were both Justices of the Peace; they had one son but none of William's children outlived him.(P.20, Argus,27-5-1933,obituary.)

His second wife,Julia, died in 1953. I wonder if he used Morse Code for the proposal.
SEGRAVE—LLOYD.—On the 14th April,1904, at the Presbyterian Church, Hawksburn, Victoria, by the Rev. W. S. Rolland, William Segrave, J.P., superintendent of Submarine Telegraphs, to Julia, third daughter of the late John Lloyd, J.P., of Battery Point, Hobart, Tasmania.(P.9,Argus, 13-8-1904.)

In my reference to William earlier in this journal I have written his surname as Seagrave. While I have changed the spelling in the surnames list, I have not corrected this mistake which probably came from rate records. The same spelling is used below.

There are several other buildings around Flinders with links to the Telegraph Station. Barrett, built in 1871 at 119 Wood Street was occupied by William Seagrave, project manager of the cable station. Highbury, built in 1875 at 65 Cook Street was occupied by G. Day, an employee of the company. Both houses were owned by the Victorian and Tasmanian Submarine Cable Co.


Trying to make sense of information from so many different sources is like trying to umpire a footy match while trying to consider the opinions of spectators being offered from across the fence.

In summary, this is where Rosebud people posted and picked up their mail.
1. PRE-1889. Loose bag at lighthouse (with keepers' mail.)

2. School. Slot cut in residence wall.(1889.)

3. Louis Anderson's store on lot 42, c/a 17,Wannaeue,near Peebles site 1890-1897)

4. School hole in wall 1897-1901.

5. John Roberts family's P.O. 1901-1919 on lot 42 as above, last postmaster being Percy Ditchburn.

6. Rudduck's store 75 metres to the west with William C. Twyford as first postmaster there in 1920, a Rudduck son in law and Roy Cairns probably before the store was destroyed by fire.

6A. Rudduck store rebuilt quickly on larger scale and bought by Edwin James Wheeler in 1923. Site occupied present numbers 1039,1040, 1043 and 1045, the post office being in No.1045. Wheeler sold to Stephens in 1929 but retained the post office and possibly 1043.

7. Mr Wheeler transferred the post office to a new building at 1047 in February 1937. He retired in March 1946 and his son,Geoff, was appointed postmaster.

8. On July 4,1951, it was reported that the new site for the post office, at 1003 Pt. Nepean Rd,with a frontage of 83 feet,had been completed.

9. Rosebud Plaza (formerly Port Phillip Plaza) P.O. 1996? (This is the approximate date given for the closure of the Rosebud West P.O.)

Here's my reward for looking up early Dromana stores. There are two mentions of the Rudduck store at Rosebud being burnt down in 1923, the second referring to Mr Rudduck wasting no time in rebuilding, and I have been unable to re-find either of them. Mr Twycross had transferred the P.O.licence to the Rudduck store in 1920.

The store and post office at Rosebud has been totally destroyed by fire. The cause is wrapped in mystery. (P.4,Frankston and Somerville Standard, 4-7-1923.)

The above information, particularly the precise addresses of post office locations come from articles written by Peter Wilson, (presumably all in the Southern Peninsula Gazette although some cuttings had no detail of the paper or date of issue) in Mal Cairns' collection.



I am planning to get a Rosebud reunion going some time soon with two purposes in mind, the first to provide a fun-filled reunion of present and past residents of Rosebud and secondly to gather information for the production of a ROSEBUD THEN AND NOW book based on a present day full frontal photo of a section of Rosebud's main drag per chapter with details of each property's past in the 1950's and 1960's (and before in some instances.) It was suggested that the area near the lighthouse should be included and this drew a rapid response from a descendant of a light keeper who worked there in the 1890's. I am awaiting permission to use this splendid contribution so to get this journal underway, here are Vin Burnham's memories. By the way, Axel, the fisherman at Rosebud West, was Axel Vincent and Mr Durham who gave the kids broken biscuits was Antonio, Judith Durham's grandfather.

Catherine O'Byrne Hi, my great, great grandfather Wemyss Thomson was the lighthouse keeper at McCrae in the 1890’s - my great grandfather George Thomson (Wemyss’ son) went to Rosebud Primary during that time along with his brothers and sisters. There’s a few branches of descendants still living around here, we have lots of family history resources if it’s of any help, regards, Catherine.


EventDeath Event registration number17781 Registration year1898
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesWm Jos SexUnknown Father's nameOverton Thos Mother's nameMary (Lawrence) Place of birth Place of deathNcote Age86

OVERTON— RULE.— Married, on the 23th August,1838, at St. James's Schoolroom, by the Rev, Mr.Waterfield, William Overton to E. J. Rule. (P.2, The Herald, 1-9-1888.)
There was no record of this marriage on Victorian BDM or of the birth of William James Overton who was probably their son and became the husband of Catherine Hall in 1869; the lack of such just about drove me crazy on this Australia Day, 2018.

My dream involved a descendant of the above requesting that the name of Seaford should be changed to OVERTON. I could see a certain merit in the proposal but also was furious about his argument that the name Seaford had no historical merit. Seaford figured in the dream because hours earlier I'd emailed Mornington Peninsula Shire councillors that the shire's beach access tracks should be numbered as those on the Seaford foreshore were (as can be seen on Melway maps.) William Overton had not entered my mind since I was exploring the parishes of Lyndhurst and Frankston some years ago so it was strange that he featured in the dream- and fortunate!

In 1913, a progress association was formed and members decided to call their area BEACHDALE. Only a few months later the railway station was opened and named SEAFORD by the railway commissioners who had asked for suggested names to be submitted and asked the area's residents to vote for their favourite, the same democratic process which had led to the renaming of the original Langwarrin Township as Pearcedale. That's what had me fired up. They couldn't have chosen a more apt name. It had only been used once in Victoria, for William Cherry's estate at Altona. Furthermore, the ford was where Assistant Aboriginal Protector, William Thomas, had forded the Kananook Creek up to his neck in water, when his boss, Robinson, belatedly allowed him to move to the Peninsula.
(Extract from his diary in Mary Hansen Fels' I SUCCEEDED ONCE.)Democratic, Historic- no wonder I was fired up! William Overton was recognised by a road connecting Wells Rd and the mile bridge (probable site of the ford that Thomas had used)and I would support a history board but never replacement of such a fantastic, democratically- chosen suburb name.

I cannot state with certainty that William Overton who died in 1898 was the gentleman of Frankston in 1876 but his is the only one of six death records for William Overton which would fit with being an 1830's instigator of progress in Melbourne.

This road at Melway 99 E-F 10 is west of Skye Rd which was a Government road running east from Kananook Creek to McLelland Drive (which was known to old-timers as Boundary Rd because it was the boundary between the parishes of Frankston and Langwarrin.) The northern boundary of the parish of Frankston was Seaford-Ballarto Rd east to the site of Carrum Downs Plaza except on Long Island where the boundary is the laneway north of the Riviera Hotel on the site of McMahon's Halfway or Carrum Hotel.

THE PARISH OF FRANKSTON map shows William Overton as the grantee of two crown allotments, 53 and 40. The former, consisting of 47 and a bit acres was granted on 23-4-1890. Its frontage to the railway was 1967 links so its northern boundary was just south of Coonong Avenue and its southern boundary is today's Overton Rd. The latter, consisting of 113.5 acres was granted on 15-6-1889. Its western boundary was 5449 links east of the railway/Skye Rd/Wells Rd intersection and it had a frontage of 2538 links and depths from 4321 and 4767 links. Its corners were at the end of Blackbutt Ct. (n/w), the right angle in Silverton Cres(n/e), the west boundary of the retarding basin in Melway 99 J 12 (s/e) and a tad west of opposite Panmure St (s/w.)

Despite Carrum Swamp being famed as dairying country, I was about to suggest that, as William Overton was a baker, wheat might have been grown on these grants until I saw this article.

William Overton had a variety of residences in the 1870's but he was described as a Gentleman of Frankston when he owned a twelfth of the shares in the Panton Hill Mining Company. William's death place, Northcote, is almost en route to Panton Hill.
William Overton, Frankston, gentleman 1000

THE following accident cases were on Saturday and Monday admitted to the Alfred Hospital:—James Burns, of South Yarra, with two ribs broken, the result of a fall from the roof of a house on which he was working. William J. Overton, of Latrobestreet, Melbourne, with several ribs broken, caused by the upsetting of a trap which he
was driving (etc.) (P.15, Advocate, 6-9-1873.)

I just remembered that I had intended to find William's marriage record. There are only records for three men named William Overton, in 1931, 1902 and 1869. Had William been married before or had he been too busy making dough (and money)to woo the ladies? And blow me down with a feather, Hall Rd is only three miles (240 chains) from Skye Rd along Frankston-Dandenong Rd.

EventMarriage Event registration number3071 Registration year1869
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesWilliam SexUnknown Spouse's family nameHALL Spouse's given namesCatherine

BLAST! I was hoping to find a place of birth being Frankston or Lyndhurst.
EventBirth Event registration number24 Registration year1871
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesRebecca Marget Lune SexFemale Ship nameRiver Lune Father's nameOVERTON William Mother's nameCatherine (Hall) Place of birthAt Sea

The above may have been William's second marriage as a William Overton and Elizabeth, nee Rule, had daughters in early days. This could have been William's first wife if they were divorced and she decided to retain her married surname. Clifton Hill is close to Northcote. However her funeral and death notices seem to rule out the possibility of a divorce. Were there two William Overtons in Melbourne's inner north?

EventDeath Event registration number13325 Registration year1892
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesElizth James SexFemale Father's nameRule Jas Mother's nameMary May (Gleddon) Place of birth Place of deathC Hill Age70

OVERTON. -The Friends of Mr. WILLIAM OVERTON are respectfully invited to follow the remains of his dearly beloved wife to their last resting place, in the Melbourne General Cemetery. (P.1, Argus, 3-11-1892.)

OVERTON.—At Michael-street, North Fitzroy, Elizabeth James, wife of Wm. Overton, aged 70. A Victorian
colonist of over 54 years. (

* Elizabeth Overton was born to William Overton and Elizabeth in 1839 and married in 1867.

EventBirth Event registration number9A Registration year1839
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesElizabeth SexFemale Father's nameOVERTON William Mother's nameElizabeth (Unknown) Place of birthMELBOURNE

TOCKNELL–OVERTON.—On the 9th April, 1867, at St.Andrew's Church, Brighton, Victoria, by the Rev.S. Taylor, Charles Henry, youngest son of W.Tocknell, Melbourne, to Elizabeth, eldest daughterof W. Overton, Melbourne. (Silver wedding.)P.1, ARGUS, 9-4-1892.

The above was half of a double wedding.

EventBirth Event registration number10130 Registration year1845
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesEmily SexFemale Father's nameOVERTON William Mother's nameElizabeth James (Unknown) Place of birthMELBOURNE

Norton— Overton.— On the 9th April, 1867, at St.Andrews Church, Brighton, Victoria, by tho Rev. S.Taylor,George, the eldest son of the late R. S. Norton,Esq., of Brighton, to Emily, youngest daughter of W.Overton, Esq., of Clifton Hill. Both natives of Melbourne. Silver wedding. Present address "Lyndhurst", 12 Mark-street, North Fitzroy.(P. 3, The Age,9-4-1892.)
EventBirth Event registration number11353 Registration year1852
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesMary Hennina SexFemale Father's nameOVERTON William Mother's nameElizabeth (Unknown) Place of birthBRIGHTON

If Catherine and Elizabeth's husbands were the same man, he must have divorced Elizabeth, married Catherine and then remarried Elizabeth after Catherine died (or left William for James Burt.)
EventDeath Event registration number11771 Registration year1877
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesCatherine SexUnknown Father's nameHall David Mother's nameRebecca (Patterson) Place of birthGLASGOW Place of death Age27 Spouse's family nameBURT Spouse's given namesJames

POSTSCRIPT. The above sounds too much like the plot for a soapie but might explain why William Overton and Catherine, nee Hall,who married in 1869, had only one child, in 1871. Not being aware of William Joseph's marriage in 1838, I had wondered why he hadn't married till 1869. The only explanation would have to be that William Joseph married Elizabeth James Rule in 1838 and they had a son named William who married Catherine Hall at the time William Joseph Overton was a GENTLEMAN living at Frankston. The "gentlemen" living on or near the Peninsula almost always had their major residence somewhere in Melbourne. Two, who by hard work had retired from work, having built up a nest egg, were Peter Pidoto* of Dromana and a large landowner east of Mornington in the parish of Moorooduc by the name of Sumner** who had a mansion in Brunswick/North Fitzroy near William Joseph Overton's abode in 1898.
*PIDOTO. - On the 26th ult., at his residence, Dromana-house, Rowe-street, North Fitzroy, Carmello (Peter), the beloved husband of F. E. Pidoto, late of Dromana. R.I.P. (P.46, The Australasian, 3-10-1991.)

This fellow was living in the area of William Joseph Overton's last suburban stomping ground and the informant didn't know much about his parents and there was no death notice; I believe he was the son of William Joseph Overton and Elizabeth, nee Rule, who had married Catherine Hall in 1869.

EventDeath Event registration number8520 Registration year1905
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesWm Jas SexUnknown Father's nameUnknown Mother's nameUnknown (Unknown) Place of birth Place of deathC Hill Age64


If land was placed under the transfer of land act it was usually with the intention to subdivide. This seems to have happened to William's land at Frankston in 1920. His land elsewhere was obviously subdivided earlier.

There were still Overtons in Frankston in 1927.
The usual monthly meeting was held last Friday, May 6. Cr. W. Hutchinson presided. The following councillors were present: - Crs. Miles,Armstrong, H. E. Unthank, Hoban, May, Montague, Bradbury, Oates,Pratt, Wells, Overton, and J. Unthank.(P.7, Frankston and Somerville Standard, 13-5-1927.)

OVERTON—GRUNDY - On the 11th April, at St.Andrew's Church, Brighton, by the Rev. Ernest Selwyn Hughes, B.A., Charles Hector, youngest son of the late Henry Edward Overton*, of Frankston, to Elizabeth, youngest daughter of the late James Grundy, of Brighton.(P.5, The Age, 19-5-1894.)

AHA! Confirmation that William Joseph Overton was the grantee of the Frankston land, not William James.
EventBirth Event registration number1263 Registration year1843
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesHenry Edward SexMale Father's nameOVERTON William Mother's nameElizabeth (Unknown) Place of birthMELBOURNE

The late Lelia Shaw, if I remember correctly from a "for pleasure only" reading of THE WAY WE WERE in 2010, mentioned a pioneering family named Philbrick living near the Bembridge Golf Course at Melway 149 K1. William Joseph and Elizabeth Overton's son, Henry Edward, born 1843 as above, did not find his bride in that area east of Somerville known in early days as Bembridge but may have been responsible for the George James Philbrick removal from Brighton to Bembridge by 1882( Their son, Harry George, was an esteemed member of the Frankston community.

OVERTON—PHILBRICK.—On the 10th inst., at St. Andrew's Church, Brighton, by the Rev. S. Taylor, Henry Edward, second son of Wm. Overton, Esq., to Emma Matilda, only daughter of Mr. George Philbrick, both of Brighton. No cards.(P. 4, Argus, 16-1-1866.)

EventBirth Event registration number6777 Registration year1867
Personal information
Family nameOVERTON Given namesHarry George SexUnknown Father's nameHenry Edward Mother's nameEmma Matilda (Philbrick) Place of birthBRIGHTON

On Wednesday last, Mr Harry G.Overton left Frankston, after many years of residence. Failure of heath has caused him to relinquish his trade of house painter and decorator, a pursuit which he followed with much artistic skill. In Temperance and religious circles he will be greatly missed. He has been secretary of the local
Rechabite Tent, organist at the Methodist Church, secretary to the Trustees thereof, and also to the Sabbath School, and junior Steward of the Frankston Methodist Circuits. All these offices he filled con amore, and it
will be difficult to replace so respected and versatile a townsman. He has gone to Prahran to commence business
as a wood and coal merchant. In the near future, we understand, Mr Overton will be "farewelled" in an appropriate manner. (P.2, Mornington Standard,10-10-1903.)

Mr William Overton, whose death took place at Northcote on the 3rd inst. at the age of 86 was a colonist of 66 years. In his youth he was a sailor but relinquished that career and emigrated to Hobart in 1832 just about the time when the infamous Convict settlement beyond "Hell's Gates", Macquarie Harbour was at itsheight. Tiring of Tasmania he came over to Melbourne in 1837—the year by the way that Queen Victoria ascended the throne— his fellow passengers being Mr. John Hodgson, Mr. John T. Smith, Captain Fines, Dr. Cousens, Mr. John Lamb, and
Mr. Wm. Buckley, who are all long since dead.

On the 1st November, 1837, he and Mr. John Gunn bought from the Government, for the sum of £22 , an allotment(half an acre) adjoining the present Bank of Victoria in Collins Street.Mr. Overton built a bakery and carried on the business of a baker till the following year, when he took into partnership Mr. David Hill, confectioner. As Overton and Hill they opened the first wholesale and retail confectionery business in Melbourne, and not a few old citizens of the present day will remember that they got their first buns and lollies at this establishment.

His partner having been killed by a fall from a baker's cart, Overton, in process of time, moved into larger premises in Swanston Street, and here it was that gas was first used in Melbourne on the evening of 23rd July, 1849. He had a complete gasworks built on his premises, the architect and builder being a blacksmith, named George South, who had already been experimenting for some years with the idea of perfecting a system of gas lighting. For a while Overton's two gas-lit shops were one of the sights of Melbourne, and,needless to say, he profited greatly. Mr. Overton's successful experiment was followed by a general desire on the part of the leading shopkeepers to have the new light installed, and in order to realise this he invited a number of gentlemen to his house to discuss a scheme for supplying the city with gas, instructing Mr. Wickham,solicitor, to prepare the necessary prospectus. This resulted in the formation of the first Melbourne Gas Company, of which
Mr. John Allen was appointed secretary and Mr. Overton one of the preliminary directors. Some of the proposed rules not being to his liking , he soon withdrew from office.

Mr. Overton also built the first glass-works in the colony at Rokeby Street, Collingwood. At Clifton Hill, where he lived, 10 years ago Mr. Overton celebrated his golden wedding, having been married in Melbourne in the early days of the Port Phillip settlement, in St James's School-room by the Rev. Mr. Waterford(sic, Waterfield*) on August 28th 1838. Several of Mr.Overton's children survive him, and reside in and about Melbourne.(P.10, Argus, 12-11-1898.)
*Rev. Waterfield married the sister of James Purves,grantee of the Tootgarook pre-emptive right near Rye.


2 comment(s), latest 2 months, 3 weeks ago


SECTION 3, PARISH OF TULLAMARINE, was granted to William Vesey Leslie Foster on 27-1-1843. It consisted of 640 acres and had a one mile frontage on the western side of the road leading north to Fawkner St, Broadmeadows Township (Westmeadows south of Kenny St) and a one mile frontage to the north side of Sharps Road west of Broadmeadows Rd. The grant extended north to a line indicated by the Londrew Court/ Freight Rd midline, the Derby St/ Melrose Drive corner and Post Office Lane (the northern boundary of Trade Park Industrial Estate.)

William Foster also received the grant for section 21 Doutta Galla directly across Sharps Rd from Section 3 Tullamarine and his younger brother John was granted section 20 between section 21 and the river. As the land in the parish of Doutta Galla is not the focus of this journal, suffice it to say that sections 20 and 21 extended south to the line of Spence St, Keilor Park, the northern part of section 21 became James Sharp's "Hillside" and Maurice Crotty's "Broomfield" and the Delaheys of Keilor were later associated with section 20.

A descendant of E.E.Kenny of Camp Hill informed me that Robert Hoddle surveyed the road to Bulla in 1847. Originally referred to as Mt Macedon road, this cut though the north west corner of section 3 and soon afterwards David William O'Nial established the Lady of the Lake Hotel on the road's north eastern side. O'Nial was described as being at "Springs" as were residents on the road to Keilor!" This was rather confusing so in the 1850's the locality east of Keilor was instead referred to as Springfield. The reason Tullamarine and the area near Keilor had both been called Springs was because 3 Tullamarine and 21 Doutta Galla were known by that name.

Tullamarine was never a township but closer settlement soon developed near the Lady of the Lake, Broombank and another leased property in the cut-off north eastern corner of section 3, many allotments being sold on J.P. Fawkner's subdivision (south west of the road) and Riddell and Hamilton's Camiston Estate (on the north east side), both north of section 3. ALSO tenants leased farmlets on the northern portion of section 3 now occupied by Catherine Avenue and the Trade Park Industrial Estate.

As I discovered very recently, the rest of section 3 was called "Springvale" by the later 1850's. See:

John, often blamed unjustly for the Eureka Stockade, returned home in 1857, having previously become owner of William's grants. As you will see in the above journal SPRINGVALE was reduced in size during the late 1850's.
In 1867, John decided to sell the THREE CONTIGUOUS CROWN SECTIONS, as a whole or in parts. James Sharp, who'd recently been on Riddell and Hamilton's subdivision bought the north eastern part of 21 Doutta Galla and D.T.Kilburn bought 400 acres on the Sharps Rd frontage of 3 Tullamarine (on the date specified in the other journal.*) He called his farm Fairfield and George Williamson leased it for decades, as shown by Hunt reports.

*Kilburn paid 5 pounds per acre.
Mr Robert Byrne reports the following recent sales of properties, namely :— ...... ; 400 acres,Tullamarine, £2000 ; etc. (P.19, Leader, 14-12-1867.)

James Harrick, whose cottage north of the historic St Augustine's, Keilor is now the Keilor Historical Society's base, was later assessed on the farm but I have no idea if he called it Fairfield. James divided the farm into two equal parts, the eastern 200 acres going east to include the Fisher Grove house blocks.

Messrs. A. E. Gibson and Co. report having sold by private contract, on behalf of Messrs. James Harrick and Son, 200 acres at Tullamarine, being the eastern portion of part of Crown portion 3, to Mr. George Mansfield;etc.
(P.2, Argus, 5-3-1910.)

The western half became "Brightview" bought by Michael Reddan who'd come from Bulla. The Reddans later farmed James Sharp's Hillside circa 1928 when the Albion-Jacana railway line was being built, and John Grant's "Seafield". The Doyles bought Brightview and renamed it Ristaro. My uncle, Alf Cock Jnr. and one of the Doyle's were both killed in W.W.2, their names thus being inscribed on the Tullamarine memorial Which Major Murphy moved from the Conders Lane corner to the Dalkeith Avenue corner.

This article doesn't tell us which 200 acre farm George Mansfield bought but Gordon Connor* told me in 1989 that George had built the Dalkeith homestead in 1910, so it was the farm from Fisher Grove house blocks to Broadmeadows Rd. Finding what George had called his farm is the reason for this journal.

The Seymour Express has the follow-
ng: - Seymour and the district lose an
estimable and highly respected family in
that of Mr. and Mrs. George Mansfield,
by their removal, in order to be nearer
the metropolis, from the beautiful prop-
erty 'Mayfield' to Tullamarine, near
Essendon. Mr. Mansfield's farm was
recently purchased by Mr. Bjorkstein,
the late owner having secured a 200
acre estate at Tullamarine. The Sey-
mour property was originally owned by
the late Mr. David Mansfield, from
whom it passed to his son George, over
twelve years ago, 'Mayfield' has been
in the family for 23 years. Mr. Mans-
field is not a stranger to his new abode,
Tullamarine, having lived there during
the first three years of his married life.
The desire to educate his family - two
sons and three daughters - induces him
now to return to the old locality, where
he can take advantage of the proximity
of the city to meet his wishes in this
respect. After 12 years of dairying and
cropping here he has sold his herd of
cows, and intends on his new property
to grow hay for the Melbourne markets.
During his tenure here Mr. Mansfield
was considered one of the progressive
class of agriculturalists, ready to go
ahead on new methods, and was succes-
ful as the result. His late home was a
model of completeness and its ready sale
was the outcome of the confidence felt
in Mr. Mansfield. As citizens, Seymour
will miss a man and wife who took a
pride in the place, and who indeed were
loth to leave. They have spent a happy
and prosperous time in the district, and
will carry away nothing but kindliest of
recollections of the period they lived in
The Sugarloaf Creek correspondent
of the same paper, writes:- Mrs. Mans-
field has always been a most prominent
and energetic worker in anything con-
nected with the social life of the district,
and her well-known presence at picnics,
concerts, etc., will be sorely missed. We
wish the family all prosperity in their
new sphere of activity. (P.2, Sunbury News, 2-4-1910.)

*EventBirth Event registration number18326 Registration year1899
Personal information
Family nameCONNOR Given namesGordon SexUnknown Father's nameJos Mother's nameAmelia (Nash) Place of birthESDON

Mr. H. S. K. Ward reports having sold
by private treaty Mr. George Mansfield's
property, situated at Tullamarine, con
taining 200 acres, for the sum of £4200,
the purchasers being the Messrs. Baker.
(The Essendon Gazette and Keilor, Bulla and Broadmeadows Reporter Thursday 12 February 1914 p 2 Article)

At One o'clock sharp.
Clearing Sale
H. S. K. WARD, under instructions from Mr. Geo. Mansfield (who has disposed of his property), will SELL by PUBLIC AUCTION on the property, "QUEENLEIGH," Bulla road, 9 miles from Melbourne, on the above date,(etc.)
(P.2, Flemington Spectator, 22-1-1914.)

I knew about the Bakers before I discovered their name for the eastern 200 acres because Gordon Connors told me that one of the Bakers had died in an accident at the farm. BUT I KNEW NOTHING ABOUT THE BROS. BEING SONS OF THOMAS BAKER, ONE OF THE BIGGEST DAIRY FARMERS IN VICTORIA, AFTER WHOM BAKERS RD. IN NORTH COBURG WAS NAMED.

BAKER.—In loving remembrance of our beloved father, Thomas Harrison, who died at Somerset Dairy, Somerton, 13th September, 1910; also our beloved mother, Elizabeth, who died at "Merrilands," Preston, 3rd September, 1889; also our beloved brother, Thomas Harrison, who died at "Preston Park," Tullamarine, 25th February,
1915.(P.1, Argus, 13-9-1916.)


The above journal gives details of later owners of the Bakers' Preston Park who are summarised here.
Thomas Loft named the farm Dalkeith, recalled by Dalkeith Avenue. His son Ray had married Maggie, nee Millar*,and taken over the lease of Broombank (Millar Rd,Tadstan Drive area), finally purchasing it when the O'Nial girls died in the early 1930's. At some stage Tommy subdivided the eastern 40 acres of Dalkeith so the farm then consisted of 160 acres. Eumarella St was named after a place where Tom had previously lived but the spelling is wrong. Gordon St was named after Ray's son. Tom, a staunch Methodist and long-time Sunday School superintendent at Tullamarine had the Junction Hotel(over Bulla Rd from the north east corner of Dalkeith and south of Broombank) closed in 1929; Cec and Lily Green bought the pub (a haunt of Squizzie Taylor) and operated a store with petrol pump at GREEN'S CORNER for decades, once having a visit from a retired policeman who showed them a bullet lodged in a door during a raid on the Junction Hotel to capture Squizzie. Lily's fondest memory was serving petrol to Alister Clark of Glenara at Bulla.
*LOFT—MILLAR.—On the 13th February, 1924, at Maribyrnong road Presbyterian Church,Ascotvale, by the Rev. D. S. McKenzie,assisted by the Rev. W. Goyen, Raymond T. B., son of Mr. and Mrs. T. B. Loft, of Dalkeith, Tullamarine, to Isobel Maggie,youngest daughter of Mrs. and the late Mr. Robert Millar, of Ballater Park, Greenvale.(P.13, Argus,8-3-1924.)

By 1943 Leslie King Dawson was being assessed on the now 160 acre farm and it is almost certain that Percy Hurren replaced him in 1951 when he joined the Tullamarine Progress Association* having previously been postmaster at Jones" Corner, Moorooduc in 1950 and telling David Shepherd of Moorooduc that he'd bought a farm at Tullamarine. (*Formed at a meeting called by Tommy Loft in 1924.)

By 1960 land had been bought for the jetport and houses were built in Theresa St for Americans involved in airport construction. Houses were soon built as far down Dawson St as the walkway (linking this street to Dalkeith Avenue) just east of the Kindergarten site. The Petersens would often wake up to see Percy's cows nibbling the shrubs in their garden. Percy's farm was developed as the Broadwood Park Estate according to Leo Dineen who was responsible for getting the east and south boundaries of the farm constructed at Commonwealth expense and the oval and hall built on part of Dalkeith farm, now officially named the Leo Dineen Reserve.

The Dawsons retained Tommy Loft's name for the 160 acre farm. In 1943, it was definitely Leslie KING Dawson who was assessed on the property. It seems that the Keilor rate collector got it wrong*.

HEWITT-DAWSON.--On May,25th, at Knox Presbyterian Church, Ivanhoe, by Rev. Simpson, Ida Muriel, second daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. V. Hewitt, Grant Street, Alexandra, to Leslie Donald, only child of Mr. and Mrs. L. D.
Dawson, Dalkeith, Tullamarine. (Alexandra and Yea Standard and Yarck, Gobur, Thornton and Acheron Express, Friday 7 June 1946 p 2 Family Notices)

* The rate collector was right!
HEWITT-DAWSON. - Ida Muriel,second daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. V.Hewitt, Grant street, Alexandra, to L.A.C. Leslie Donald, only son of Mr. and Mrs. L. K. Dawson, Dalkeith, Tullamarine.(P.10, Argus, 21-11-1942.)

Tommy Loft's subdivision was a fizzer with only a few blocks occupied by Loft relatives* and Tom himself. Dawson might have bought the 160 acre farm and MANY UNSOLD BLOCKS in 1941 but certainly not 200 acres.Tommy had paid rates on the present Tullamarine Primary School site which contained a corn store and saleyards. The homestead was near the Dawson St corner.
[* LOFT.-On June 1, Thomas B.. beloved husband of Clara, father of Hazel (Mrs.Exell), Doris (Mrs. Scoones), Raymond, and Harold, aged 79 years. (Privately Interred.)P.9, ARGUS, 4-6-1947.

OCTOBER 27.-Auction Sale at Scott's Hotel, Melbourne, of Loft's Dalkeith Freehold Estate of 200 Acres at Tullamarine.(P.7, Argus, 1941.)

Tommy Loft's second given name appeared to be a closely guarded secret. I was hoping to find his place of birth.
Eumarella* St was supposed to be named after the river that flows through Macarthur!
EventDeath Event registration number5305 Registration year1947
Personal information
Family nameLOFT Given namesThomas Benjamin SexMale Father's nameLOFT Henry Mother's nameEmma (Shandeven) Place of birthVICTORIA Place of deathCHELTENHAM Age78

EventBirth Event registration number9600 Registration year1869
Personal information
Family nameLOFT Given namesThomas Benjamin SexUnknown Father's nameHenry Mother's nameEmma (Bradley) Place of birthMACARTHUR

*Eumeralla River
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Course and features
The Eumeralla River rises northeast of Macarthur, and flows generally south, and then west through the town of Macarthur,etc.

The first stage of the Dalkeith Subdivision is shown in the attachment.Gordon St house blocks were obviously added after the birth of Ray's son. Wahroona may have been the now-demolished Californan Bungalow at 3 Eumarella St. The Dalkeith Avenue shown on the plan was nearer the location of the current Dawson St.

LOFT (nee Maggie Millar). - On the 1st February,at Sister Davies Private hospital, Scott street,
Essendon, to Mr. and Mrs. Ray Loft, Wahroonga,Tullamarine - a son ( Gordon Raymond).
(P.13, Argus, 9-2-1929.)


I'D ALWAYS ASSUMED THAT 21 DOUTTA GALLA AND 3 TULLAMARINE WERE KNOWN AS SPRINGS OR THE SPRINGS! Section 20 Doutta Galla, near the river, had been called Leslie Banks during Alphabetical Foster's ownership.

TO LET, for a term of years, the following FARMS:
(portions of the estate of John L. Foster, Esq.), all fenced, and fit for the plough, viz. :
Springvale farm, on the Deep Creek-road, containing about 470 acres, with dwelling house, stables,&c.
Also, The Springs farm, containing about 90 acres**,with houses, &c.
For particulars apply to Mr. Sim*, Springvale ; or to Messrs. Edward Row and Co. (P.8, Argus, 7-12-1858.)

*Alexander Sim was the grantee of section 6, parish of Holden, consisting of 218.9 hectares (541 acres), on 6-9-1850. Its northern boundary was an eastern continuation of the line of Bulla-Diggers Rest Rd from Dickens Corner(Melway 176 D7) to Jacksons Creek at the top of 176 G8, this creek forming the east and south boundary to 175 C10 (bottom right.) By 1858 he had probably sold the property to John Dickens who called section 6 Coldingham Lodge. He had! From my Alexander Sim the Younger, Settler journal:
Having paid one pound 14 shillings per acre for the supposedly 541 acres (1.7 pounds x 541 acres= L919 14s) in 1850, Alexander sold it for more than three times as much less than two years later.

**Maurice Crotty married Miss McCormack and settled in 1860 on the leased north west portion of section 21 Doutta Galla across the north end of today's Keilor Park Drive from the south east portion of Annandale which the McCormacks were leasing. Mrs Crotty wrote a letter in 1867 stating that somebody had bought part of Springs; it was James Sharp who established Hillside. By this time John L.Foster had become John Foster Vesey Fitzgerald for reasons explained at the end of the journal.

"The Springs farm, containing about 90 acres"
Much of section 21 Doutta Galla had been leased to tenants but Alphabetical Foster retained a portion near Melway 15 F6 and the junction of Spring Creek, (which had originated from a spring across today's Mickleham Rd and flowed through Springvale and Hillside)and Steeles Creek, which originated in Annandale. Alphabetical was the Colonial Secretary when Governor Latrobe's illness caused a sudden retirement and Alphabetical became the Acting Governor. The Crotty's told a descendant, Glenn Cotchen about the GOVERNOR'S HOUSE and described roughly where it was. Glen found the site and told me about it.

I was trying to find when Springvale near Dandenong was first referred to by that name when I found there was a property in Deep Creek Road of that name opposite the Lady of the Lake Hotel available for lease.

TO LET, SPRING-VALE FARM, opposite the Lady of the Lake Hotel, on the Deep Creek-road, about 186 acres of good land, fenced, and fit for the plough, together with dwelling and out-houses. Immediate possession. Apply at the farm.(P.8, Argus, 12-3-1859.)

William Foster was granted section 3 Tullamarine and section 21 Doutta Galla immediately north and south, respectively, of the mile (8000 links) of Sharps Rd west of Broadmeadows Rd. It was this shared frontage that alerted me to the fact that in Melway map 3 onward, one millimetre represents a chain and enabled me to transpose the boundaries of properties onto Melway maps! William returned home to claim an inheritance and his younger brother, John, grantee of section 20 Doutta Galla, gained ownership of William's grants.

Section 3 Tullamarine and sections 21 and 20 are shown on parish maps with information about the Fosters
provided by Margaret, a descendant of Edward Winter who leased land on 3 Tullamarine from the Fosters.

Section 3 Tullamarine was north of Sharps Rd from Broadmeadows Rd to its western end where it adjoined section 2, Annandale. The eastern boundary, where it adjoined Camp Hill continued past Tullamarine junction into today's Mickleham Rd to the Londrew Court/Freight Rd midline and the northern boundary passing through the Melrose Drive/Derby St corner and along Post Office Lane, the northern boundary of TRADE PARK INDUSTRIAL ESTATE to the north west corner of section 3 in the middle of Melway 5 B10.

It consisted of 640 acres but the portion on the north east side of today's Melrose Drive consisted (by Measurement on Melway) of about 53 acres, occupied by the Lady of the Lake on about 5 acres, Broombank of about 27 acres and later the Junction Estate fronting today's Mickleham Rd as far north as, and including Londrew Court. Deducting the 53 acres would reduce Springvale to 583 acres but the land between the Janus St/Catherine Avenue midline and Post Office Lane was probably leased as small farmlets to such as Edward Winter and James Trimmer (who ran the awful school at "Springs" in 1850-mentioned on page 27 of BROADMEADOWS A FORGOTTEN HISTORY and by Isaac Batey who married Edward Winter's daughter.)

The part of section 3 occupied by Catherine Avenue and Trade Park Industrial Estate was sold by an agent for John Foster to Charles Nash (109 acres plus about 15 acres), J.F.Blanche (about 15 acres), George Mounsey (about 7 acres), Thomas Purvis (about 15 acres), John Wright (about 15 acres) and Ann Parr (15 acres.)

These farmlets totalled about 190 acres (possibly the 186 acre Springvale farm of 1859) and with the 400 acres discussed below and the estimated 53 acres across Deep Creek or Bulla Rd we get somewhere near the right total of 640 acres for section 3.

Not too long afterwards (25-9-1867) the Kilburns bought the 400 acre portion of section 3 south of a line indicated by the Catherine Ave/ Janus St midline and called it Fairfield, George Williamson leasing it for many years. Here's a brief history of the 400 acres from my WHERE WAS PRESTON PARK IN TULLAMARINE journal.

This was part of the Fosters' Leslie Park for which William and John gained a 10 year Crown lease in 1840. The southern 400 acre portion was sold to D.T.Kilburn on 25-9-1867. The Kilburns called it "Fairfield". I believe that (since there was only one 400 acre farm in Tullamarine) David Milburn of Grange Farm, Victoria's first irrigator, was leasing it in 1868. James Harrick was leasing it in 1893 and 1900. By 1913 it had become two farms of 200 acres, Reddan's Brightview and Ernie Baker's farm. By 1930, Brightview had become J.P.Doyle's Ristaro.
Tom Loft was in Tullamarine by 1924 when he convened the meeting at which the Tullamarine Progress Association was formed. He called Baker"s old farm "Dalkeith" and, as stated before, subdivided the Broadmeadows Rd frontage. Keilor rates reveal that Leslie King Dawson owned the farm by 1943 and Percy Hurren by 1956.(Postscript. Percy,the storekeeper/postmaster at Jones' Corner at Moorooduc in 1950,attended his first Tullamarine Progress Association meeting in 1951 so he was probably already on the former PRESTON PARK.)

As section 21 Doutta Galla and 3 Tullamarine both consisted of 640 acres, , 110 acres of the former had been sold and 62 acres of the latter by September 1867.John Fitzgerald Leslie Foster had rearranged his names to become John Foster Vesey Fitzgerald (previous to his departure for Europe)so he could secure a Fitzgerald inheritance.


Sometimes I spend hours, even days, compiling information about pioneers but unless it has been published as, rather than in, a F.T.C. JOURNAL, the information can be difficult to relocate. The son's history of the Mornington Peninsula is as rare as hen's teeth and is NOT FOR LOAN from the Mornington Peninsula Library, being sensibly archived. Yesterday, I spent hours in the Local History Room (which to me is like a jail)when I should have been at the beach, researching rate records in relation to James Cosmo Newbery and Dr. Charles Weld.When I finished,and switched off the microfiche machine, I could hardly walk.

I am often asked to recommend books with information about a particular Mornington Peninsula pioneer such as Blooming Bob White. Usually there aren't any, the only way to access the information being to type the pioneer's name and itellya in the search bar. Then that person, such as toolaroo, in this case, can communicate with me via FTC private messages, later email, being provided with rates information and so on,FROM THE COMFORT OF HOME until a family history can be written, in this case, Stephen Lynch's PIONEERS OF THE PENINSULA.

As toolaroo lives in New South Wales, it would be a bit much to have to travel to the local history room at Rosebud to read Hunter's history and probably just as expensive to buy a rare copy of the book. Therefore, I wrote an email to the M.P.S. LIBRARY requesting a special loan of the book so I could write a review (as I had for Susan Peatey's rare book) detailing information about pioneers that was not available from countless other sources.

I supplied information about the Rogers family which I will copy below. The reply was an invitation to spend up to the required two weeks in what is to me, a jail.

Lynne Luscombe. The illustrator of the sketches you posted was the son of the Dromana State School headteacher mentioned by Margaret Storey. His parents were married during his father's tenure at the school and the newlyweds' arrival at Dromana provoked a chuckle or two.

ROGERS-STIRLING.-A pretty house wedding was
solemnised at Winchelsea on Easter Monday, when
Miss Minnie Stirling, eldest daughter of the late
Mr. W. Stirling, was united to Mr. George Hunter
Rogers, son of Mr. James Rogers, of Bendigo, and
schoolmaster at Dromana. The wedding, which was
celebrated by the Rev. Colin Robertson took place
at the residence of the bride's mother, Winchelsea*.
It was very quiet, only relatives and most intimate
friends being present. The bride was married in
her travelling dress of brown cloth, which was
trimmed with velvet. She wore the orthodox tulle
veil and coronet of orange blossom, and carried a
lovely shower bouquet. There were four brides
maids in attendance, the Misses D. and F. Stirling,
who were gowned in blue cloth with relief of white
cloth and gold braid, and the Misses Daisy Stirling
and Elva Rogers, whose blue serge costumes were
trimmed with blue velvet. They all cariied shower
posies with ribbon streamers. The two elder
bridesmaids wore gold amethyst bangles, souvenirs
from the bridegroom, the younger bridesmaids' gifts
taking the form of crescent brooches set with
amethysts. At the conclusion of the ceremony a
light dejeuner was served. Later in the afternoon
the bride and bridegroom departed for Melbourne,
where a short honeymoon was spent at the Grand
Hotel. The travelling costume was completed by a
smart little toque of brown velvet with a touch of

They arrived at Dromana on one of the roughest
days of the season, so that passengers had
some difficulty in landing from the steamer, but as
soon as the large number of people who had
gathered on the pier to witness their arrival caught
sight of Mr. Rogers, he was literally showered with
rice. Nature, not to be out-done, added her quota
to the proceedings, and he was immediately drenched
by an extra big wave. The rice adhered to the wet
hat and garments, and caused much amusement.
The bride escaped most of this reception, as she, of
course, was not at once identified. The passengers
on board, as well as the folk on the pier, thoroughly
enjoyed the incident. (P.12, Table Talk, 3-5-1895.)

*The birth of a son (possibly the illustrator/ historian) at a hospital in Geelong, indicates that Minnie spent her confinement at her parents' residence.

Minnie's husband was involved in the leadership of many community organisations* as well as making the school's garden one of the best in the state. Minnie was a keen writer.**

At a meeting of residents held in
the Dromana Hall on Monday night it
was unanimously agreed to tender Mr.
G. H. Rogers a farewell social on
Wednesday night, the 16th. inst, prior
to his departure for McArthur, and to
make both Mr. and Mrs. Rogers the
recipients of some souvenier as a mark
of esteem. During the twelve years
Mr. Rogers has had charge of the local
State school, he has identified
himself with many progressive move-
ments for the advancement of Dromana
and district, and has filled both
creditably and satisfactorily the
positions of secretary of the Kanger-
ong Agricultural and Horticultural
Society and of the Dromana
Mfechanics' Institute and Free Library.
Mr. and Mrs. Rogers have always
cheerfully and willingly assisted at
numerous entertainments in aid of
various charitable movements through-
out the Peninsula. A strong com-
mittee has been formed to carry out
all necessary arrangements, and lists
are to be circulated in the district for
the convenience of all who are disposed
to contribute
.(P.2, Mornington Standard, 12-1-1907.)

** Minnie's THE JUMBOREE TALES, published in Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney) in the early 1900's, are like the children's tales written by Mrs Evelyn Gough (nee Rigg) of Rosebud, in that they are based on family members and their peninsula localities. Minnie's story about the golfers mentions one golfer still dressing as a footballer, a reference to her husband, and might have been inspired by a game on Dromana's original golf course (shown on Melbourne Brindle's map.) It would not surprise me if both Evelyn and Minnie's stories, like many of Roald Dahl's, originated as bedtime stories for their own offspring.

This sample involves the former ti tree swamp below the present Dromana Bowls Club. Ned Williams was said to have cut a road around Anthonys Nose (the rocks) in the mid 1880's and the spring's output now fed into a horse trough. No doubt it overflowed at times, causing a pool by the road.

"Beside the road leading to the Rocks is a long,
shallow pool, prettily fringed with soft green
grass, where llve hundreds and hundreds of
They are very clever fellows, and sing part
songs and choruses all night long.
Coming home one night along tho road, Hun-
ter's father aud mother stopped to listen, and
enjoyed the music very much. Next morning
they told Hunter and his brother Stirling all
about it, and the little boys were delighted when
an invitation came for them "and their friends"
to be present that night at an entertainment
given by tho Frogs.
(Princess Spinaway's Department. The Jumboree Tales. III.—THE FROG'S FROLIC.
Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney, NSW : 1870 - 1907) Wednesday 23 September 1903 p 38 Article)

This was written by Minnie's son Hunter, (who, with his brother Stirling, was a character in many of Minnie's stories.)

At the time he wrote this history, there was no internet and research would have involved perusing old copies of the Peninsula Post and interviewing descendant of pioneers. Another source may have been the multitude of articles published in 1934 to provoke interest in the centenary of Victoria's permanent settlement.

His illustrated map of the Mornington Peninsula shows the extent of his research such as in the detail of the King run in the parish of Tyabb but also misunderstanding of oral history, such as Polly Wells (Mrs David Kelly) being born in 1803; she was actually born on the site of the present Koonya Hotel at Sorrento in 1841* when Henry Cadby Wells and Robert Rowley were burning lime together, Polly having travelled from Melbourne in her mother's womb. The map also implies that Henry Tuck took up the Mantons Creek Run in 1843, at which time he was building the Arthurs Seat Homestead, his son, Henry Jnr. (the poet) being born there.

Mornington Standard (Frankston, Vic. : 1911 - 1920) Saturday 8 February 1919 p 1 Article
It is believed that after a short stay in Frankston, Henry and Hannah made their way down to Sorrento, they known as Point Nepean. They were blessed with another daughter, Mary Louise Wells, also nick-named 'Polly', born 7-6-1841 at Sorrento and Baptised in the Church of England, Parish of St. James on the 10-10-1841. Polly was the eldest of 13 children, having 12 brothers ! ! Polly is believed to have been the first white baby born to permanent settlers of the Mornington Peninsula.

Unfortunately, these misunderstandings and other errors are likely to become accepted history, having been quoted in later histories.Two others that spring to mind from the map are the steel lighthouse at McCrae dating from 1874 (the year it was fabricated) and the wooden lighthouse it replaced being itself replaced as the Arthurs Seat Lookout in 1920 (actually 1934.)

I feel a duty to examine the map and book to point out any further errors but the CHRONOLOGY OF BURIALS AT DROMANA must remain my chief priority. If I do find time, this will be done on the PIONEERS OF THE MORNINGTON PENINSULA page.

Hunter Rogers - AustLit
Hunter Rogers i(3 works by) (a.k.a. George Hunter Rogers; H. Rogers; see more)
Also writes as: Bunty
Born: 16 Jan 1896 Dromana, Victoria ; Died: 1985 Mornington, Victoria
Gender: Male

Works By (3)
Works About Author (1)
This Author in Trove
George Hunter Rogers enlisted in 1915 and was a Private in the 6th Field Ambulance where he served as a stretcher bearer at Gallipoli. He also became a draughtsman to the Chief Engineer, 2nd Anzac Corps. He was repatriated to Australia on 1 April 1919. In civilian life Rogers worked as an engineer with the Public Works Department, Victoria. Rogers also wrote The Early History of the Mornington Peninsula (1960) and a History of the 'Woodlands' Golf Club [1984?]

Illustrated map of Mornington Peninsula with historical an… | Flickr[email protected]/8742906186

VICTORIAN BDM was offline for scheduled maintenance when the above was written.
EventMarriage Event registration number2892 Registration year1895
Personal information
Family nameROGERS Given namesGeo Hunter SexMale Spouse's family nameSTIRLING Spouse's given namesIsabella Wina

ROGERS—STIRLING.—On the 15th inst., at Winchelsea,
by the Rev. C. Robertson, George Hunter, second
son of Jas. Rogers, Bendigo, to Minnie, eldest
daughter of the late Wm. Stirling, Winchelsea.
(P.1, Argus, 27-4-1895.)



I first saw mention of Cosmo some years ago in relation to a fire at Dromana and had no idea who he was or where his property was until a day or so ago, courtesy of the latest Mornington Peninsula Shire Heritage report (volume 2) and the Australian Dictionary of Biography.However his strange name COSMO had been implanted forever in my memory. His biography states that he was born in Livorno, Italy and the unusual nature of this town must have been recognised by his parents when his name was chosen. Pardon the TripAdvisor spelling!

Livorno: Livorno - TripAdvisor
Historically speaking, Livorno it is said to be a cosmopolitan and free town, thanks to the LIvornine laws which gave shelter to people from all over the world if persecuted by ethnical, political or religiuos issues. Many cult places still remind us of the old days: The Sinagogue, The Greeek Church, The English cementery, the ...

POSTSCRIPT. My subconscious tries to help me solve mysteries by producing oh so credible LOCAL HISTORY DREAMS.They're no action dramas, just little old me reading trove and discovering something sensational. Last night's one, like all the rest, was complete rubbish of course. (Cosmo's name was connected with Livorno, not because of its cosmopolitan nature but because of his grandfather, Cosmo Newbery, a cosmologist -astrologist-in the Pitt Government who had also been living in Livorno at the time of James Cosmo Newbery's birth.)

Such historical fiction seems so credible that it has to be checked as soon as I awake. AND IT DOES LEAD TO DISCOVERIES. I think this town was mentioned in passing in Cosmo's biography.

Cosmo Newbery (Yilka)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cosmo Newbery
Western Australia
Cosmo Newbery is located in Western Australia
Population 74 (2011 census)[1]
Established 1920
Postcode(s) 6440
Elevation 507 m (1,663 ft)
1,036 km (644 mi) East of Perth
85 km (53 mi) North East of Laverton
LGA(s) Shire of Laverton
State electorate(s) Kalgoorlie
Federal Division(s) O'Connor
Cosmo Newbery (also spelt Cosmo Newberry, also known as Yilka) is a small Aboriginal community in Western Australia located 1,036 kilometres (644 mi) east of Perth between Laverton and Warburton in the Goldfields-Esperance region of Western Australia. In the 2011 census, Cosmo Newbery had a total population of 74, including 64 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.[2]

The town is named after James Cosmo Newbery[3] who was an industrial chemist noted for his work on improving the chlorination method of gold extraction.[4]


THE CORRECT SPELLING OF THE SURNAME IS NEWBERY but as the digitisation shows (the first word not having been corrected) failure to use both versions will probably severely limit the amount of information found.

NEWBERRY.-On the 1st inst., at his residence, Hotham-street, St. Kilda, suddenly, James Cosmo Newbery,C.M.G., aged 52 years.(P. 46, The Australasian, 11-5-1895.)

Cosmo's surname was written as Newberry in his death record* and Newbery in the records of his marriage to Catherine FlorenceMaud Hodgkinson in 1870 and the birth of their son, James Wilfred Travers Newbery in 1875**. (To confuse matters even more, the surname was written as Newbury and then Newberry in the Flinders and Kangerong Shire rate books.)

* EventDeath Event registration number7324 Registration year1895
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERRY Given namesJas Cosmo SexMale Father's nameWm Boyer Mother's nameIsabel (Fraser) Place of birth Place of deathSk Age52
(The second given name of Como's father was given as Boxer, not Boyer, in Cosmo's biography!)

**EventMarriage Event registration number3611 Registration year1870
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERY Given namesJames Cosmo SexUnknown Spouse's family nameHODGKINSON Spouse's given namesCatherine Florence Maud

EventBirth Event registration number12691 Registration year1875
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERY Given namesJas Wilfrid Travers SexUnknown Father's nameJames Cosmo Mother's nameKath Florence Maud (Hodgkinson) Place of birthSTKI

SPECULATION. Cosmo's wife may have been related to surveyor Hodgkinson after whom a street in Dromana Township was named. The son, Wilfred, a hero in W.W.1 who suffered gas poisoning in 1918 (because of something he ate!*)may have acquired his third given name because of a family connection with an ancestor of Sir Thomas Travers, eye doctor, who bought the historic "Seawinds" on Arthurs Seat in 1946 or even Benjamin Travers who pioneered opthalmology in England.

*Mrs Cosmo Newberry, of Waverley road, East Malvern, has been advised that her son Captain Wilfred Newberry, D.S.O., M.C., has been seriously gas-poisoned by the strange mischance of having eaten food that had been exposed through the night. Captain Newberry was a son of the late Mr. Cosmo Newberry, C.M.G. -Government analyst.(P.45, The Australasian, 24-8-1918.)
N.B. No record for Wilfred was found in the A.I.F. PROJECT. He died in 1942.

I gave up trying to find the central riding assessments in 1918-19 after half an hour. Once countless subdivisions started the old order of east, central and west ridings disappeared so an index would have been handy. Cosmo's wife, Florence, was assessed after his death and leased the 20 acres to Dr Charles Weld for several years before selling this block to him.

P.55. Additional information for Place History of 51 Devon Rd.
RE: 51 Devon Street was originally part of Crown Allotment 4, Section 3 in the Parish of Kangerong. In 1894, James C Newberry Esquire purchased land south of Boundary Road (totalling almost 20 acres). Upon his death, the land was sold to Elizabeth A. T. Weld of Dromana, in March 1919 (LV:V2531/F034). In 1920, Charles Weld was rated for 73 acres 'and buildings' located in part of Section 3 (Parish of Kangerong), Dromana, with a Net Annual Value (approx. 10% of the total value) of 25 pounds. It is not known where these buildings were located in relation to 51 Devon Street. Charles and Elizabeth were also rated for land in other parts of Dromana at this date (RB).
Dr Weld’s house is shown on Ewart Brindle’s pre 1918 map of Dromana at the north west corner of c/a 4 section 3 (the east corner of Bryan’s Cutting, now called Hillview Quarry Rd) and Boundary Rd at about the west end of Devon Rd.
As the only James Cosmo Newberry (for whom there is a death record) died in 1895, the sentence "Upon his death, the land was sold to Elizabeth A. T. Weld of Dromana, in March 1919 (LV:V2531/F034)." doesn't make sense.
J.C.Newberry (or Newbery!) adds to the significance of the Devon Rd area due to his contribution to Victoria in the geological survey and the museum.

DROMANA, WYN YEUK, ideal grounds, beautiful view, near sea, terms, moderate, Mrs. Weld.
(P.12, Argus, 4-12-1907, column 3 to right of MATRIMONY.)

By 1-2-1908, Dr Weld was practising medicine, setting 14 year old John Dyson's wrist.
(P.3, Mornington Standard, 1-2-1908.) THE QUESTION IS:WHERE?
RATE RECORDS. Assessment numbers in brackets.
1899-1900.(377) Newbury, Executors J.C. Trustees and Exors Co., 20 acres and bds., Dromana.
DITTO ---(381) Newbury, Florence A.J.Panton, 14 acres, lot 19 Flinders. (Meaningless tripe!)

1909-10.(515) Mrs Florence Newberry Trustees Ex. Co.,20 acres and scribble (buildings?) 2 of 2 5,6,7, N.A.V. 30 POUNDS. (Meaningless tripe!)SEE 1910-11.

From 2010 transcription of 1910-11 rates.No assessment numbers recorded.
Dr. Weld (estate Mrs H?.Newbury), 20 ac. & bds., 2 of 2, part 4, section 3.(As shown on Ewart Brindle's map.)

1910-11. (569)Mrs Florence Newbury Trustees Execors Co. crossed out.

1913-14. (889) Charles Weld 2 ac, c/a 2 section C.
DITTO- (890) Charles Weld oner- trustees etc Newberry Estate, 20 ac. & bds, part c/a 4 section 3, Kangerong.
DITTO- (891) Elizabeth A.T.Weld, 53 ac. part c/a 4, section 3.

EventDeath Event registration number5578 Registration year1933
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERY Given namesCatherine Florence SexFemale Father's nameHODGKINSON George Mother's nameSarah Ellen (Rudd) Place of birth Place of deathBEAUMARIS Age86

NEWBERY.—On the 18th July 1933 at The Grange, Beach road, Beaumaris, Catherine Florence Maud widow of the late James Cosmo Newbery CMG, (private funeral.)P.1, ARGUS, 20-7-1933.

EventBirth Event registration number5982 Registration year1873
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERRY Given namesElizabeth Maud SexUnknown Father's nameJames Cosmo Mother's nameCatherine Florence (Hodgkinson) Place of birthST KILDA

EventBirth Event registration number12444 Registration year1874
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERRY Given namesKatherine Florence SexUnknown Father's nameJames Cosmos Mother's nameKatherine Florence (Hodgkinson) Place of birthST KILDA

EventBirth Event registration number12691 Registration year1875
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERY Given namesJas Wilfrid Travers SexUnknown Father's nameJames Cosmo Mother's nameKath Florence Maud (Hodgkinson) Place of birthSTKI

EventBirth Event registration number19420 Registration year1878
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERY Given namesBertha Jessie SexUnknown Father's nameJames Cosmo Mother's nameKathleen Florence Maud (Hodgkinson) Place of birthST KI

EventBirth Event registration number12713 Registration year1881
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERY Given namesEveline SexUnknown Father's nameJames Cosmo Mother's nameCatherine Florence Maud (Hodgkinson) Place of birthSTKI

EventBirth Event registration number6503 Registration year1886
Personal information
Family nameNEWBERY Given namesElvia Constance SexUnknown Father's nameCosmo Mother's nameFlorence (Hodgkinson) Place of birthSTKI

That was probably Cosmo's last chance of siring a second son.As his biography states:
Unhappily he suffered spinal and chest injuries in the Windsor railway collision of 11 May 1887; although never fully recovered, he still carried out much important work. He died at his home in Hotham Street, East St Kilda, on 1 May 1895.

There hadn't been much about "Newberry, Dromana" so I used the correct spelling. I intend to present the articles chronologically but this one comes first because it was years ago that I saw it and thought, "What a strange name. To the uninitiated it gives no clue to the location of the late Cosmo's property but you, reader, have seen the passage from the heritage study and my comment about Ewart Brindle's map.

A fierce fire is burning within a mile of
Dromana, menacing the property of the late
Mr Cosmo Newbery. Should this cross the
road the destruction of some fine properties**
cannot be averted.
Another fire is threatening
Mr Burrell's place, opposite the lighthouse. Mr
Shand; saw miller, of Balnarring, has lost 23
bullocks by the fire, their roasted carcases being
huddled together in a burnt paddock. It is
also stated that Mr D. Mails*, J.P., has lost
1000 sheep, they having fallen victims to the
flames. Such a fire has not occurred there for
over 20 years. (P.2, Mt. Alexander Mail, 2-2-1898.)


** SOME FINE PROPERTIES. Between Newbery's 20 acres (just east of Bryan's cutting road, today's Hillcrest Quarry Rd) and Gracefield was the wedged shaped town common, later a gravel reserve, with a narrow frontage to Boundary Rd and a wider frontage to today's Pindara Rd east of Seawind Lane. I don't believe the valuable properties were across Bryan's cutting because there would only have been James McKeown's Gracefield west to Caldwell Rd.

The road would have been Boundary Road, the boundary between sections 1 and 3, Kangerong.Bounded by Boundary, Jetty and Palmerston Rds was Charles Barnett's grant, c/a 13 section 1, Kangerong. This almost 37 acre property was subdivided quite early and you'll never guess what the name of the estate was-or perhaps you will!

A public meeting to advocate the
inclusion in the Railway Bill of the
surveyed line from Mornington to
Point Nepean, via Dromana, Rosebud,
Rye and Sorrento, was held in the
Mechanics' Institute on Tuesday
evening last. There was a large
attendance and Mr H. W. Wilson
occupied the chair.
The following resolutions were
carried unanimously:-(1) That the
meeting appoint a deputation to wait
upon the Minister of Railways to ask
for the inclusion in the Railway Bill
of the surveyed line from Mornington
to Point Nepean, via Dromana, Rose
bud, Rye and Sorrento.
(2) That Messrs Rudduck, Boag,
Gibson, and Wilson be appointed as a
deputation and that they use every
possible effort to obtain the insertion
of the line in the Bill.
(3) In the event of the Minister
being unable to receive the deputation
that the Member for the district be
requested to move in the House, that
this line be inserted, and that the
co-operation of every member be
obtained. (P.3, Mornington Standard, 5-7-1890.)

The railway never eventuated but the name for the subdivision of Barnett's grant was, of course, the RAILWAY ESTATE. Description of properties was so inadequate in 1900 that Mrs M.A.Dyson's 26 acres, Kangerong could have been anywhere. In 1910 this same person was described as a boarding house keeper, as was Mrs M.E.Dyson, the former being assessed on 15 acres and buildings and the latter on land, Railway Estate.

Lack of information in rate records and concerning years from Colin McLear in A DREAMTIME OF DROMANA re construction of houses make it difficult to determine if the houses on Melbourne Brindle's pre 1918 map of Dromana were built by 1898 when the fire caused such devastation. As he was born in 1904, his memories probably date from 1910 onwards.

Bob Dyson's house on the future Panoramic Estate, fronted the east side of Jetty Rd (known as Pier St in early days)a block or two from Boundary Rd. Also on the east side were Clydesdales' house south of Palmerston Avenue, Harry Kop (Copp), and Dyson's Boarding House (Marna, said to be on the Pier/Charles St corner by Colin McLear,obviously near Marna St, and to have been built circa 1890 by the current CONTEXT citation.) Farther east was Boag's and Wainwright's "Melrose" on the south side of Palmerston Avenue close to the location of the Kangerong Avenue bridge over the Freeway and Fig St. If the fire had crossed north west into the Railway Estate the properties in danger may have been those of George Dyson, west corner of Boundary and Jetty Rds, then heading west, Miss Talbot, John Dyson and Wades.Jonah Griffith's property was near the middle of the triangle and the "Parsonage" and Wens The Manse were on the south side of Palmerston Rd heading towards Boundary Rd.

Practical.—Those who are anxious to try their luck at fossicking and digging, but are lacking the necessary knowledge, will (says the Argus), be interested to know that Mr. Cosmo Newbery is having made roughly, as a digger would make them, a sluice-box and a cradle. They will be finished in a day or two, when they will be on view at the side of the Public Library, Swanston-street, or at his office opposite the entrance gates. It is not generally known that the technological department of the library contains specimens of most of the kinds of gold-bearing quartz, wash-dirt, and precious stones, etc., found in Victoria, as well as models of gold-saving appliances, from the early single stamper to a miniature battery.These are to be found in a room on the right
hand of the new picture gallery.(P. 2, Bendigo Advertiser, 9-3-1894.)
N.B.The desire to try fossicking was prompted by the 1890's depression and massive unemployment, as were the Village settlements such as at RED HILL near Dromana. Benjamin Franklin Eaton, brother of the late Watson Eaton (Dromana's amateur but much loved doctor) had come to Dromana from Creswick and it's a good bet that he met up with Cosmo at TUBBARUBBA where there had been a rush about three decades earlier.

Mr. Cosmo Newbery called upon the Secretary for Mines yesterday, and stated that during a recent visit to Dromana he learned that heavy alluvial wash had been struck by some prospectors working in a creek near Arthur's
Seat. He inspected the ground, and saw that the wash contained gold. Mr. Newbery says it appears to be the continuation of an old lead, and not a mere creek wash. The Government geologist has been instructed to visit the locality and report on the discovery.(P.5, The Age, 16-5-1894.)

I wonder from where Cosmo had been removed to his St. Kilda home. Any chance it might have been Dromana and Cosmo had been over-exerting himself near a creek?
The many friends of Mr J Cosmo Newbery will regret to hear of his serious illness.On December 14 Mr Newbery was suddenly seized with a severe attack of hemorrhage, and was removed to his residence in Hotham street, St. Kilda, where the services of Mr O'Hara were immediately called into requisition. Mr O'Hara was the surgeon who attended Mr Newbery after the lamentable Windsor accident when the unfortunate gentleman sustained a fracture of the spine. Such cases are practically given up as incurable, but under medical treatment Mr Newbery recovered, although it is to be feared that the effects of the accident always affected his health. It seriously compromised his present chances of recovery. We are, however, glad to state that yesterday a very marked improvement in his condition was reported, and Mr O'Hara has every hope of his complete recovery.
(P.7, Argus, 22-12-1894.)

Briquettes, Hmmm!



The widow of the late Mr. J. Cosmo Newbery petitioned the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday on behalf of herself and children on the grounds that Mr. Newbery sacrificed his private interests in the zealous performance of his
public duties, that his death was primarily due to the Windsor railway accident, and that a promise made by the Gillies Government to supplement the compensation he received for his injuries in the railway accident by
giving him the status of a civil servant was never fulfilled.(P.24, Leader, 9-11-1895.)

Amongst the numerous floral tributes sent to Mr Cosmo Newbery's funeral was one which bore the following inscription:- "From the boys of Queen's College, St. Kilda, with sincere regret and much sympathy." Mr Newbery hadacted for some years as one of the judges at the annual athletic sports meetings of Queen's, and his only son (who is now on an exploring expedition in the centre of Australia) was educated at the school.
(P.2, Weekly Times, 11-5-1895.)


On Thursday evening, 18th June, a capital entertainment was given in the Mechanics' Institute under the auspices of the members of the Hope of Dromana, Juvenile Tent, I.O.R., who received ready and efficient help from
Mrs. and the Misses Newbery and Miss Hodgkinson, who got up several tableau;
(P.2, Mornington Standard, 25-6-1896.)

For the 13.2 pony, to be ridden by children, 13 competitors paraded the ring, which was really worthy of a higher prize. Master Ben Wilson secured First and Miss Elvia Newberry second.
(P.3, MORNINGTON STANDARD, 24-3-1898.)

THE FIRE as detailed before the chronology.



Some historians tend to be a bit pompous in their writing but this young girl's story was a delight to read.

It was found by chance in a Newberry search on trove and I hope that you enjoy it as much as I did.

Wikipedia is very good at pinpointing the locations of old Victorian place names.
Geelong West, Victoria - Wikipedia,_Victoria
Ashby was once a suburb of Geelong located in the area of Geelong West, west of Latrobe Terrace, between Aberdeen Street and Church Street. By 1850 this area had become known as Little Scotland, and Kildare. At this point, Ashby referred to the area between Autumn Street and Waratah Street. In 1875, the entire ...


I found the answer quick smart. If Edith was still at State School she was most likely in Grade 8, the last grade,and an absolute certainty to gain her merit certificate. She would be about fourteen years old but to be on the safe side, I searched for her birth record between 1913 and 1915.

EventBirth Event registration number22384 Registration year1914
Personal information
Family nameTAINTON Given namesEdith Marianne SexUnknown Father's nameChas Albt Mother's nameUna Blanche (Thurrowgood) Place of birthGEELONG

Little Athletics rewards every child for having a go and is mirrored today by almost automatic promotion from grade to grade at Primary Schools, on the basis that social and intellectual development is more likely if the child is with age peers. In the old days children had to earn their promotion from grade to grade with the result that there seem to be giants in old class photos. The greatest aim of most pupils was to gain the Merit Certificate before leaving school at 14 to work in a reasonably interesting job guaranteed by it. Those who missed out, still in grade 6 when they turned 14, became factory fodder. However some sympathy was shown in some decisions about awarding the certificate, and by the greatest coincidence this example features another Ashby State School pupil.

Another pupil of the Ashby State School, Fred Cowling, in addition to the nine who received their certificates on Monday last, has been successful in obtaining his card: - The youth, who is about to leave school had missed the certificate by half a- mark, but on fresh perusal of the examination papers these showed general proficiency; and when the attention of the inspector (Mr. A. B. Rowe) was drawn to the fact he immediately recognised the justice of the claim, and made the award. (P.3, Geelong Advertiser, 22-9-1911.)

By about 1911, several High Schools started as Higher Elementary Schools so that those who had gained their Merit could continue their education and thus the first intake was in form 3. Later grades 7 and 8 in State Schools were replaced by forms 1 and 2 in schools central to regions and thus called Central Schools.

Successful students at Ashby State School such as Enid might have gone to a private school but Enid had another option.
Our History

In the early 1900's schooling was compulsory for children 6 - 14 years at State Primary Schools. For those who couldn't afford private education, there was nowhere they could continue their education until they were 17 and could attend the Gordon Technical College. In 1909 community concern grew for this gap to be filled and this saw the establishment of a Continuation School to provide an academic education for trainee teachers and a general education for those wishing to go on to the Gordon.

On February 8 1910, 79 students together with eight teachers and an Acting Headmaster, began classes in a couple of disused rooms at the Gordon. John William Gray was appointed Headmaster in April with an annual salary of £345 ($690.00). Twelve months later, enrolments has increased to 150 and 12 rooms were being used at the Gordon. The school was renamed the Geelong High School and so became Geelong's first State Secondary School.

Edith was only about seven years old when her mother died.
TAINTON. - On the 24th February, 1921, at private hospital, Geelong, Una Blanche,the dearly loved wife of Charles Albert Tainton, of 35 Clarence Street, Geelong West, and devoted mother of Stanley, Una and Edie, and loved sister of Minnie(Mrs. Nicholls), of Leopold, and Nellie(Mrs Cuddy) W.A. Aged 40 years.
(P.1, Geelong Advertiser, 25-2-1921.)
Una would have been born in about 1881. Her maiden name was Saunders but she may have been Mrs Thurrowgood when she married Charles in 1909*.
EventDeath Event registration number1787 Registration year1921
Personal information
Family nameTAINTON Given namesUna Blanche SexFemale Father's nameSAUNDERS James Mother's nameMary Ann (Harrison) Place of birth Place of deathGEELONG Age40

*EventMarriage Event registration number2868 Registration year1909
Personal information
Family nameTAINTON Given namesChas Albt SexUnknown Spouse's family nameTHURROWGOOD Spouse's given namesUna Blanche

Edith's father almost certainly died in 1928 leaving Edith an orphan. He drowned in Corio Bay. There was no death notice.Edith was only about 14.
EventDeath Event registration number14915 Registration year1928
Personal information
Family nameTAINTON Given namesCharles Albert SexMale Father's nameTAINTON Richard Mother's nameUnknown (Unknown) Place of birth Place of deathGEELONG Age60

He was a widower and lived with his two children


Her crossword puzzle at age 17. CROSSWORD

This is just a sample of Edith's contributions to newspapers, her address written as 17 Preston St., Geelong West. The big question is who was looking after her. Did she have to leave school after her father's death?
No wonder I saw no mention of the academic success I'd expected to find. How sad!



EventDeath Event registration number14401 Registration year1911
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesRobt SexUnknown Father's nameRowley Jas Mother's nameElizth (King) Place of birth Place of deathPt Nepean Age89

EventDeath Event registration number12094 Registration year1924
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesChristina SexFemale Father's nameEDWARDS William Mother's nameElizth (Unknown) Place of birth Place of deathSORRENTO Age88

By the Rev. J. Smithies, at the House of
Mr. Joseph Tongs, Illawarra, Christina Ed-
wards, the only daughter of Mr. William Ed-
wards of Newborough, Fife, Scotland, to Mr.
Robert Rowley, of Dromana, Victoria.
(P.2, Launceston Examiner, 1-1-1861.)
Distance from Illawarra, Tasmania to Longford, Tasmania?
4 min (4.0 km) via Illawarra Rd/B52 and B51

EventBirth Event registration number5104 Registration year1862
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesElizabeth SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristia (Edwards) Place of birthDROM

EventBirth Event registration number14380 Registration year1866
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesMary Christina SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthDROMANA
(Robert Rowley was working at Dromana for Peter Pidoto who married Frances Taylor. Mary Christina married the brother of Frances, William Taylor Jnr., if I remember correctly.
EventMarriage Event registration number4442 Registration year1883
Personal information
Family nameTAYLOR Given namesWilliam SexMale Spouse's family nameROWLEY Spouse's given namesMary Christina)

EventBirth Event registration number10773 Registration year1863
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesFrank SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristian (Edwards) Place of birthVICT* (SEE DEATH RECORD)
(*EventDeath Event registration number21428 Registration year1948
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesFrancis SexMale Father's nameROWLEY Robert Mother's nameChristina (Edward) Place of birthRYE Place of deathSALE Age85)

EventBirth Event registration number21465 Registration year1864
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesWilliam SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOT

EventBirth Event registration number5965 Registration year1868
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesRichard SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOTGAROOK

EventBirth Event registration number25484 Registration year1869
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesRobenea SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOTGAROOK

EventBirth Event registration number26808 Registration year1871
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesMargaret SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOT

EventBirth Event registration number27642 Registration year1873
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesJames SexUnknown Father's nameRobt Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOTGAROOK

EventBirth Event registration number19965 Registration year1875
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesEmma SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOT

EventBirth Event registration number5750 Registration year1877
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesRobert SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOTGAROOK

EventBirth Event registration number19645 Registration year1878
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesJohn SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTO OT

EventBirth Event registration number6049 Registration year1881
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesMartha Rebekah SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristian (Edwards) Place of birthTOO

EventBirth Event registration number27002 Registration year1883
Personal information
Family nameROWLEY Given namesAdeline Maude SexUnknown Father's nameRobert Mother's nameChristina (Edwards) Place of birthTOOT