janilye on Family Tree Circles
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The following information is for those who are interested in the surname Swale, Swale Hall and Swaledale in Yorkshire.
The owners of Swale Hall have told us that the building as it is today dates back to the mid 16th century and that there are no visible signs of the original Swale Hall.
Walter de Gaunt became the first Lord of Swaledale; he had married Matilda the daughter of the Breton Earl of Richmond. Matilda's father gave her the whole of Swaledale as a dowry. Walter then subsequently gave the Manor of West Grinton to his nephew Alured, who adopted the surname Swale after the name of the river Swale. Swale Hall remained in the possession of this Swale family and their descendants until the days of Queen Anne. The most distinguished of this Swale family was probably Solomon Swale, a barrister, who became Member of Parliament for Aldborough, which is near Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire. This Solomon was created a baronet in 1660 and is buried at St. Martins-in-the-Fields in London. Sir Solomon Swale, the third baronet and grandson of the Solomon above, failed to renew the lease of the main part of the Swale estate and this resulted in Swale Hall being sold by auction. Sir Solomon the third baronet died in a debtors prison in 1733.
There is a pedigree titled "Pedigree of the Blood of Sir Solomon Swale, of Swale Hall, in the County of York, who was created a baronet, ad 1660." Along the foot of this pedigree is written, "Vouched- G.H.De.S.N.Plantagenet Harrison (Signed)." This pedigree may well have been prepared when the Reverend Sir John Swale, the 7th Baronet claimed the title, which had been dormant after the death of the fifth Baronet. This pedigree begins an A.D 800 with Syderic, Count of Harlebeck, Governor & Hereditary Forester of Flanders. A.D.800. It then gives Engelran? Count of Harlebeck, Governor & Hereditary Forester of Flanders. A.D 814. It then gives Odoacre, Count of Harlebeck, Governor & Hereditary Forester of Flanders. A.D 850. It would take too long to give the pedigree up to 1873 but because the pedigree was vouched by G.H.De.S.N.Plantagenet Harrison makes it dubious.
George.H.De.S.N.Plantagenet Harrison wrote a one volume History of Yorkshire that was published in London in 1879 and there is a note on the library index card in the Leeds reference library in Yorkshire that this history of Yorkshire is now considered to be semi-fictitious. It would appear that those who are familiar with any written work by George.H.De.S.N.Plantagenet Harrison consider his work as semi-fictitious and this applies to the pedigree of the blood of Sir Solomon Swale.
John Eaton 1811-1904 Son of
William Eaton 1769-1858 and Jane Ison LLoyd 1770-1823
Mary Ann Onus 1813-1897 daughter of Joseph Onus 1782-1835 and Ann Elizabeth Eather 1793-1865
Not long after John Eaton married Mary Ann at St.Matthews, Windsor on the 17th of January 1831, they too moved to the Hunter River district as a prelude to more distant interests. John Eaton and his brother Daniel, rode in 1836 to the vicinity of the present town of Inverell and in the same area, closer to the modern town of Moree, Daniel Eaton established at that time his "Binniguy" run on the Gwydir river. John was spending little time at home in his restless search for land. Mary Ann had only one child between 1833 and 1837.
In 1844 the family moved to the Roseberry Run on the Richmond River and ten years later there was yet another wholesale removal, this time to "Teebar", a consolidated property of 58,000 acres, near Maryborough in Queensland. John leased Teebar from Henry Cox Corfield in 1849 and later in 1854 Corfield transfered the property to John Eaton. Henry Cox Corfield's wife Jessie, nee MURRAY 1824-1853 had died in 1853 and he was so affected he felt he could not live on the property again.
John was keen to send the family by ship to Queensland, along with the furniture and personal possessions. However, Mary Ann insisted that the family go overland with him, and family records indicate that it was just as well she did, as the vessel carrying their possessions to Wide Bay was wrecked and all their belongings lost. Life at Teebar was made very difficult by the frequent and determined onslaughts of the aborigines but the area was gradually pacified and the station extended.
John became Mayor of Maryborough in his time there while holding a position on many projects and public establishments.
In 1869 with his son-in-law, the husband of Mary Ann Elizabeth, Walter HAY, John bought a paddle Steamer named "Sir John Young". This vessel was used on the Mary River as a tug, towing loads of sugar cane to the mills.
On one of the later acquisitions, Eatonvale, in 1859, John Eaton built a palatial residence, set overlooking the Mary river. Built from home-made clay bricks and fitted with beautiful rich cedar from James Eather's farm at Dorrigo. He named the home 'Rosehill' and it came complete with ballroom, and on one occasion the Governor of Queensland stayed there when visiting Maryborough.
You can visit Rosehill and tour this beautiful homestead, and still, today in the grounds is the original well, the washouse complete with it's copper. And attached to the washhouse are 'his' and 'her' thunderboxes.
John Eaton owned many properties in the Wide Bay area, he died on 19 June 1904, at Brooweena, Queensland,Australia at age 93
His grave is close to the Teebar homestead at Brooweena in Queensland, Australia
The Brisbane Courier, Tuesday 21 June 1904
DEATH OF AN OLD RESIDENT.
Mr. John Eaton, proprietor of Teebar and other stations in this district, died at the residence of his son-in-law. Mr. R Maitland, of Westwood, on Sunday. The deceased was the oldest pioneer in the district, and was 94 years of age. He was born at Richmond Bottoms, Maitland district, New South Wales. in the year 1810, and leaves some hundreds of descendants, down to tho fifth generation.
Obituary of John Eaton
The Maryborough Chronicle - Tuesday 21st June, 1904
The duty has at last fallen upon us to record with deep regret the death of that splendid old pioneer settler of the Wide Bay district Mr. John Eaton the Squire of Teebar Station at the grand old age of 94 years. The venerable gentleman had only been ailing for a short time and died quietly and peacefully at Westwood the residence of his Son-in-law Mr. Richard Maitland on Sunday night June 19th. Mr. Eaton was in every sense of the word a splendid colonist and one that not merely the district but all Australia might well be proud of. Born at Richmond Bottoms in the Maitland district it is questionable whether any older born Australian colonists were alive at his death. As a boy he worked in Sydney and afterwards had a hard life up country, farming and cattle breeding. About 44 years ago he took up Teebar run and arrived there overland with his wife and family from New South Wales. He had resided there ever since with the exception of some time spent in Maryborough in the early sixties. During his long occupation of Teebar Mr. Eaton carried on grazing pursuits most successfully. He also invested largely in Maryborough property, and was one of the founders of the once famous Eatonvale sugar plantation and factory. In the earlier days Mr. Eaton took a most active interest in the public affairs of Maryborough. He was one of our first aldermen and was the second Mayor of the town succeeding Mr. Henry Palmer our first Mayor, who is still happily with us, in 1861 and holding office to the end of term in 1862. Our esteemed old citizen Mr. C. E. S. Booker was also a member of that first council, and now that Mr. Eaton has gone, he and Mr Palmer alone remain of the original body of aldermen who laid the municipal foundations of the town. I he present council induced Mr. Eaton a year or so ago to have his photograph taken and his portrait now adorns the gallery of past Mayors in the Municipal chamber. Mr. Eaton was a man of fine physique in his prime and enjoyed an iron constitution, hardened by a very rough bush life in his early days. For many years past he had been famed for his wonderfully sustained vitality and energy. At 90 he could go out on his horse all day and muster stock with the best of them; and even up to two years ago it was his habit to ride about and look after his affairs very keenly. His was a green and vigorous old age almost to the last. He had a family of one son and eight daughters, and at the time of his death he was the head of several hundred descendants down to Great-Great- Grand children. Of his family, Mrs. Eaton died about eleven years ago and the only son William at the same time, Two daughters, Mrs. George Walker and Mrs. Hayes also predeceased him by some years. The surviving daughters are Mrs. Thompson, Mrs. G. Thomas (Clifton), Mrs. Gordon, Mrs R. G. Gilbert, Mrs Maitland and Mrs. Ezzy most of who reside in the district and in the neighbourhood of Teebar with their children and their children's children to the fifth generation, an excellent group of settlers on the land, and primary wealth producers. We have lost from our midst a grand old man upright in all his dealings and generous to a fault. His honoured name which strangely enough is not borne by his host of descendants who are the children of his daughters, will ever be indelibly impressed upon the history of the early pioneering days and development of Maryborough and the Wide Bay District. It has been arranged that the funeral shall take place at Teebar on Wednesday afternoon - when the remains of the deceased will be laid beside those of his wife. Mr. Ammenhauser, Undertaker, is proceeding by train to Teebar tomorrow morning, taking the hearse and horses with him.
The Western Champion and General Advertiser for the Central-Western Districts, Monday 19 September 1904
THE will of the late John Eaton, of Westwood, Bompa, grazier, has been
proved at 29,998,
The Brisbane Courier, Tuesday 15 November 1904
SALE OF LAND
One of the largest attendances of people that his ever attended a public auction sale in Maryborough was witnessed on Saturday morning last at Bryant and Co's auction mart, when a number of properties in the estate of the late John Eaton of Teebar were ofiered for sale, and also some of the personal effects of the de
ceased Bidding was not spirited. Half an acre of land it the corner of Richmond
and Ellena streets opposite the Sydney Hotel on which is erected a small but cher shnop was passed in at 230. Half an acre facing Adelaide, Alice and Lennox streets was passed in at 250. The Bid well paddock at Tinana, containing over 600 acres occupied by Mycock and Son which is considered to be one of the best dairying properties in the district had 2. 5s per acre offered but the owners re quired more. A 300 acre paddock at the Two- mile in the Tinana district was bought by Mycock and Son at 14s. per acre. A 74 acre paddock at the junction of the Tinana Creek and the Mary River was bought by Mr. L. Steindl at 4 10s. per acre. Seventeen allotments in the original township of Tiaro were bought by Mr. Waracker at 20 per allotment An area of 1 acre in Owanyilla township was bought by Mr.Geo Pitt foi 1. A 112 acre paddock fronting the Mary River near Etchell's Falls was bought by Mr. Sorrensen at 18s per acre. The deceased's undivided share in selections at Calgoa sold for 25
There are no descendants named 'EATON' from John and Mary Ann EATON as his only son, William, died without issue.
The children of John and Mary Ann
Mary M Eaton 1831 1831
Ann Eaton 1833 1924 m. Richard GILES 1812-1876 2. William THOMPSON 1842-1909
Mary Ann Elizabeth Eaton 1835 1870 m. Walter HAY 1833-1907
Jane Eaton 1837 1872 m. John George WALKER 1819-1914
Elizabeth Mary Eaton 1839 1933 m. Boyce James NICHOLS 1832-1879
Susannah Eaton 1842 1937 m. Thomas CORNWELL 1837-1916
Charlotta Eaton 1844 1923 m. William Isaac INMAN 1840-1869 2. Henry GORDON 1840-1923
Infant Eaton 1846 1846
William Eaton 1847 1887 m. Julia CORNWELL 1849-1942 died without issue
Caroline Eaton 1850 1850
Martha Mary Richmond Eaton 1851 1931 m. Richard MAITLAND 1846-1923
Veronica Eaton 1854 1942 m Abraham John EZZY 1851-1921
Euphemia Eaton 1854-1939 m. Robert Grant GILBERT 1842-1900
The photograph below is Rosehill
which was taken on the occasion of the Governor's visit in the 1860s and was donated to the Maryborough Wide Bay & Burnett Historical Society by Kay Gassan
George Bannister was one of three youths who were convicted at the Old Bailey on 21 April 1784 for the theft of clothing from a house at Millbank. A small girl saw one of the boys getting out of the window with the clothes under his arms. They were traced through their tracks in the snow. Bannister said he had gone to look for his mother's ass, and was running along the river bank to warm himself when he heard the cry of 'stop thief'. He was found hiding behind some willows: he said he had taken shelter there from the storm. After being sentenced to 7 years transportation to Africa, Bannister was sent to the 'Ceres' hulk on 5 April 1785, aged 18, and delivered from the 'Censor' hulk to 'Alexander' on 6 January 1787 of the First Fleet.
On 15 March 1789, Bannister suffered 50 lashes for theft of three pounds of flour from James Stewart, though he pleaded it was his first offence. On 15 November a daughter, Sarah, by Ann Forbes was baptised. Bannister was sent to Norfolk Island by 'Sirius' on 4 March 1790, as also was Ann Forbes, though she does not seem to have stayed with him. At 1 July 1791 he was maintaining two persons on a Queenborough lot, of which he had cleared 66 rods and felled 25 rods of timber. His only recorded misdemeanor on the island was a theft for which he received 50 lashes in March 1791. He had been supplied with a pig under the lieutenant governor's scheme to make as many persons as possible independent of stores for meat. On 7 January 1792 he was settled on 12 acres at Morgan's Run, Queenborough: by the end of the year he was selling grain to the government.
Bannister left Norfolk Island by 'Kitty' in March 1793 and by this time Ann Forbes had started a relationship with William Dring and remained at Norfolk Island.
William Dring was convicted of feloniously stealing six bottles of brandy three blue and white shirts two pair of trousers a pair of red leather boots and several other things of the value of ten pence from Joseph Mitchinson.
William Dring was tried at Kingston upon Hull, Yorkshire on 7 October 1784 for theft of unknown value. He was sentenced to transportation for 7 years and left England on the 'Alexander' of the First Fleet aged about 17 at that time (May 1787). He had no occupation recorded.
Governor Phillip sent a party of Officials, Marines and convicts to settle Norfolk Island and in October, 1788 Dring was one of those sent. He was employed there in various ways, probably in preparing the land for farming. In 1790 Dring and another convict volunteered to swim out to the "Sirius", which had been wrecked on the reef, in order to throw off the livestock and any remaining stores, which were still on the ship. They were allowed to do this and were successful in their efforts. They remained on board after they had completed the task and got drunk on the alcohol still on the ship. Eventually a marine was sent out and he removed the two men. They were punished by being put in prison and also made to wear leg irons. Even when they were released they were forced to continue wearing the irons.
Dring was apparently a competent seaman and contributed much in the associated work. He was praised by Governor King for his work. He was given a grant of land on Norfolk Island and then formed a relationship with Ann Forbes who had arrived in the First Fleet, on the "Prince of Wales". She had been convicted of stealing ten yards of cotton, the property of James Rollinson. Her trial was held in 1787 at the Surrey Lent Assizes. She was sentenced to be hanged but was reprieved and her sentence changed to seven (7) years transportation. Ann was sent to Norfolk Island and with her was the child she had borne to George Bannister, in 1789.
During their lives together William and Ann had three children, the last of whom was born in 1796. There was a great deal of unrest on the Island, because there were many marines stationed there and they endeavoured to entice the wives away from their husbands or the men with whom they lived. This brought many complaints form the emancipists and Dring had had cause to complain that his wife had been 'tempted away' twice. Finally he assaulted a marine and was charged. Governor King interceded on his bahalf and Dring was only fined 20 shillings. This judgement was another source of trouble on Norfolk Island. The family returned to Port Jackson in 1794 by the "Daedelus". They stayed together at least until the 20 August, 1796, when the last child was baptised. After this the partnership broke up. Little is known about Dring except 'he died in the Colony'.
The Australian Roadside Inn was a witness to a grand parade of history, characters and communities. The roads that passed their doors carried on its corrugated surface the future of the fledgling colony and the inns were encouraged by the Governors to assist the adventurous travelers. There were good inns and then there were just barley inns. The glow of the light in the distance was welcoming to the weary traveler and the warm fire in the parlor was eagerly looked forward to at each stop. Once inside, the cozy glow of the fire was a good setting for cheerful discussions with fellow travelers. Conversation was as varied as was on the state of intoxication were the travellers. It was a chance to catch up with the news from the regions and swap stories and titillate over tales of scandal.
A law was passed in 1825 that stated that every inn must provide accommodation for at least 2 persons and in 1830 another law came into being which required all innkeepers to burn a whale oil lamp outside the inn at night
In 1830 the first year that license fees were introduced and a fee of 25 pounds had to be paid to keep a Common Inn, Alehouse or victualling House, and to sell fermented and spirituous liquors in any quantity, The 25 pound license fee commenced on the first July and continued in force until the 30th June of the following year. In 1833 the fee went up to 30 pounds which was quite a large expense.
I thought my family tree going back to Kenneth MCALPIN 800AD was pretty big. But it's small potatoes compared to the tree of The Chinese philosopher and educator Confucius 551-479 BC.
He has the longest family tree in the world.
It spans eighty three generations of decendants contained in 80 volumes and includes more than two million names.
The tree begins with Confucius but let's not forget that he was decended from King Cheng Tang 1675-1646 BC of the Shang Dynasty.
The Confucius Genealogy Compilation Committee in 1998 began an international project involving more than 450 genealogy branches, set up around the world to revise this tree. This huge effort was to coincide with the 2560th. anniversary of the birth of Confucius in 2009.
The pedigree had only ever been revised four times before, the last time the clan register was updated was back in 1937 when 600,000 names were added.
According to custom it should be revised at 30-year intervals but in 1967 the terror and persecution of the Cultural Revolution made that impossible
Kong Deyong, a 77th-generation descendant of the great thinker led this massive upgrade by the 450 genealogists, which produced another 1.3 million living members. and finished in 2007 in plenty of time for the celebrations.
With family records scattered or destroyed, the restoration of the complete genealogy has taken more than a decade of international research, conducted by individual Kong clans in China, but also in Taiwan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia.
Kong Ming, a 33-year-old businessman from Shanghai, began researching his branch of the family from the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou in 1998 when his elderly grandfather dug up the coffin in which he had hidden the family records to escape persecution during the Cultural Revolution.
He spent more than 40,000 reconstructing the 800-year-old history of the family, sending out 100,000 direct marketing leaflets and putting posters all over the city to recover the links that had been lost over time. He believes it was money well spent.
More than 40,000 overseas descendants were added to the fifth edition of the Confucius Genealogy, with 34,000 of them from the Republic of Korea.
The descendants flourished on the Korean Peninsula after the 54th-generation descendant arrived there at the end of the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368)
Happily the genealogists managed to recover 900 descendants in Taiwan and two branches which have been lost for more than 1,000 years in Shanxi and Henan provinces,
Convict Assignment was like a great big rehabilitation program. It was a sort of nineteenth century 'Outward Bound'. With abrupt change, new surroundings and personal challenge, but without the floggings
John Dunmore LANG told us in 1837,that:- "when a convict-ship arrives it is the practice of the colonial government to reserve as many of the convicts, whether labourers or mechanics, as are required for the public service; the rest are assigned to persons who have previously transmitted duly attested applications for convict-servants, agreeably to a code of regulations recently established by the present Governor, and denominated the Assignment Regulation. One pound sterling is paid to Government for each convict so assigned, as the price of his bedding and slop-clothing, which he carries along with him to his future master's. If the master resides in Sydney, he is employed in the various menial capacities in which house-servants are employed in Europe; if he resides in the country, as is much more frequently the case, he is employed in tending sheep or cattle, or as a farm-servant.
The convict-servants on the different farms of the colony are usually lodged in huts formed of a split-timber, and thatched with long grass or straw, at a little distance from the proprietor's house. Two of these huts, with a partition between them, form one erection; and each of them is inhabited by four men. A large fireplace is constructed at one end of the hut, where the men cook their provisions, and around which they assemble in the winter evenings, with a much greater appearance of comfort than the sentimentalist would imagine. Rations, consisting of ten and a half pounds of flour, seven pounds of beef or four and a half pounds of pork, with a certain proportion of tea, sugar, and tobacco, are distributed to each of them weekly; and they receive shoes and slop-clothing either twice a year, or whenever they require them. Pumpkins, potatoes, and other vegetables, they are allowed to cultivate for themselves.
On my brother's farm at Hunter's River and I believe a similar system is pursued on most of the large agricultural farms thoughout the colony the overseer rises at day-break, and rings a bell, which is affixed to a tree, as a signal for the men to proceed to their labour. The greater number follow the overseer to the particular agricultural operation which the season requires; the rest separate to their several employments, one to the plough, another to the garden, and a third to the dairy, while a fourth conducts the cattle to their pasture. The bell is again rung at eight o'clock, when the men assemble for breakfast, for which they are allowed one hour; they again return too their labour till one o'clock, when they have an hour for dinner, and they afterwards labour from two till sunset".
* Lang makes it sound so 'Cosy' and it was for some who were fortunate to have honest and fair masters. But for a great many others it was no more than slavery where they were bullied, flogged and had their rations taken away by their cruel masters. For the ones who ran away, the outcome was often 30 to 50 lashes, 12 months in irons or the rope.
A typical layout for a convict ship did not exist. On the Neptune which was 200 tons heavier than most of the other ships, the cabins were 6 foot square and mean't to hold 6 prisoners on 18" wide beds. However often more were crammed into the cabin.
There was no ventilation and it was either hot and suffocating or cold and wet depending on the weather.
The rations issued to each mess of 6 convicts per week were as follows:-
1.16 lb. of bread
2.12 lb. of flour
3.14 lb. of salt beef
4. 8 lb. of salt pork
5.12 pints of pease
6. 2 lb. of rice
7.1 1/2 lb. of butter
Female prisoners also received a ration of tea and sugar. All prisoners received a ration, for the voyage, of 2 gallons of good Spanish red wine and 140 gallons of water.
The rations were good to adequate and the same for all onboard. However the ships masters were unscrupulous and cheated the prisoners out of their rations and sold them elsewhere for a profit. Starving them on the way out.
Upon arrival in the Colony female prisioners were issued with:-
1.1 brown serge jacket
2.2 linen shifts
4.1 linen bonnet
5.1 pair of worsted stockings
6.1 pair of shoes
7.1 neck handkerchief
Until 1810 convicts were permitted to wear ordinary civilian clothes in Australia. The new Governor, Lachlan Macquarie, wanted to set the convicts apart from the increasing numbers of free settlers who were flocking to Australia.
The distinctive new uniform marked out the convicts very clearly. The trousers were marked with the letters PB, for Prison Barracks. They were buttoned down the sides of the legs, which meant they could be removed over a pair of leg irons.
A convict's daily rations after arriving were by no means substantial. Typically, they would consist of:
Breakfast: One roll and a bowl of skilly, a porridge-like dish made from oatmeal, water, and if they were lucky, scrapings meat.
Lunch: A large bread roll and a pound of dried, salted meat.
Dinner: One bread roll and, if they were lucky, a cup of tea.
When convicts arrived in Australia, detailed reports were compiled of their physical appearance, including distinguishing marks. At the beginning of the 19th century one in four convicts was tattooed, and although it's hard for us to fully understand what these may have meant to the individual, some are interesting, even witty comments on convict life.
Some tattoos appear to be poignant love tokens and permanent reminders of the life and loved ones they left behind.
Some are cheeky remonstrations with the officials, such as the words 'Strike me fair, stand firm and do your duty'.
Similarly, a crucifix tattooed on a convict's back would give that impression that Christ himself was being flogged, and angels were standing by with a cup to catch the blood. This implies that it is the authorities that are sinful.
Male convicts were brought ashore a day or so after their convoy landed arrival. They were marched up to the Government Lumber Yard, where they were stripped, washed, inspected and had their vital statistics recorded.
If convicts were skilled, for example carpenters, blacksmiths or stonemasons, they may have been retained and employed on the government works programme. Otherwise they were assigned to labouring work or given over to property owners, merchant or farmers who may once have been convicts themselves
Women made up 15% of the convict population. They are reported to have been low-class women, foul mouthed and with loose morals. Nevertheless they were told to dress in clothes from London and lined up for inspection so that the officers could take their pick of the prettiest.
Until they were assigned work, women were taken to the Female Factories, where they performed menial tasks like making clothes or toiling over wash-tubs. It was also the place where women were sent as a punishment for misbehaving, if they were pregnant or had illegitimate children.
Other punishments for women include an iron collar fastened round the neck, or having her head shaved as a mark of disgrace. Often these punishments were for moral misdemeanours, such as being 'found in the yard of an inn in an indecent posture for an immoral purpose', or 'misconduct in being in a brothel with her mistress' child'.
As women were a scarcity in the colony, if they married they could be assigned to free settlers. Often, desperate men would go looking for a wife at the Female Factories.
The officials had an unpleasant cure for hangovers and drunkeness, which they imposed on convicts who were overly fond of rum. The 'patient' was forced to drink a quart of warm water containing a wine-glass full of spirits and five grains of tartar emetic. He was then carried to a darkened room, in the centre of which was a large drum onto which he was fastened. The drum was revolved rapidly, which made the patient violently sick. He was then put to bed, supposedly disgusted by the smell of spirits.
On 18 February 1994, one of the best known of the 20th century Eathers passed away at Sydney.
At a time when the decendants of Thomas and Elizabeth were down to the 10th generation, Leo held the unique position in the Eather family of being the last of the third generation descendants. He was born on the 24 August 1906, the youngest of the five children of William Abel Eather 1855-1917 and his wife Cecilia Ruth nee VILE. William was the youngest son of James Eather and Mary Ann nee HAND. Leo was the last born of approximately 540 great-grandchildren and for the last eight years of his life was their only surviving great-grandchild. His passing saw the end of an era, which began in 1831 when their first great-grand child was born.
As a young man Leo trained to be an engineer and proved not only to be gifted and talented, but an ingenious designer. At the beginning of world war II he was in charge of highly secretive work for the Australian Air Force, manufacturing carburettors for aeroplanes. It was a mammoth task, as the equipment to extrude parts came from the United States and delivery was sometimes haphazard under wartime conditions. It was at times such as this that his ingenuity proved invaluable. Soon after the outbreak of war Leo tried to enlist in the armed forces but was refused because his skills and knowlege were more valuable in the essential industry in which he was employed.
During his engineering days he was highly commended by the Safety First Council for his expertise in designing safety devices for factory machines and tool shops. His contribution in this field has saved many workers from serious accidents. However Leo didn't remain in the field of engineering throughout his working life. From his boyhood days he had been interested in the evolution taking place in the cinema and he used to dream of having a cinema of his own. Eventually he did have his own movie theatre and conducted business for many years at Pendle Hill.
In August 1937 he married Joan SLATER, and subsequently two daughters, Doreen Rosemary (1940) and Wendy Joan (1942) were born. In the 1960s Leo became interested in his family history and made a trip to the north-west, seeking information on his grandfather and relatives who had lived in that region. During his travels he met another pioneer of Eather history research, the late Sister Augustine Cahill. He became interested in the efforts of Errol Lea-Scarlett to research the history of the Eather family and was one of the original subscribers to the Eather Family Newsletter when it was launched in december 1973. With the assistance of Joan, he organised the first Eather Family Reunion, which was held at Parramatta Park and Wilberforce on 19&20 March 1977. The occasion was outstandingly successful with an attendance of about 400, and from it sprang the Eather Family Committee, of which he became the patron. He was a familiar figure at all subsequent reunions until 1992 and became a well-known and friendly personality to the hundreds of Eather decendants and their relatives and friends who attended these gatherings over the years.
He had a keen interest in the people and cultures of other countries, and with Joan he travelled extensively both within Australia and overseas. During one visit to England in 1974 he went down to Maidstone in Kent to see the town where his great-grandfather had been tried and sentenced in March 1788, in the prelude to his voyage to New South Wales.
In the 1960s Leo suffered his first serious heart problem and thereafter sometimes suffered from indifferent health, but he displayed a strong will to live and survived for another thirty years to reach the fine age of 87. For many years he and Joan resided at 101 Pendle Way at Pendle Hill, but eventually they moved to "Marlborough Gardens" in Addison Road, Manly,and there he spent his twilight years. He was very devoted to Joan and his children and grandchildren, and in return received a great affection from all of his family. He was a talented man with a great sense of humourand very much admired by all of his friends.
Leo went to his last rest on a grassy hillside in the cemetery at French's Forrest, following a service in St,Matthews church, Manly.His pall bearers were his five grandsons, Lee and Gregory Dalton, Murray, Glen and Jules Barnes.
Much of what's written here is taken from the address given on that day by his son-in-law, David Dalton.
* and yes! it is Heman not Herman
The son of William Senior Eather 1870-1961 and
Isabella Theresa Lees 1869-1962
Spouse: Adeline Mabel Lewis 1901-1966 Married 1923
Kenneth William EATHER was born on the 6 June 1901 at Balmain, a suburb of Sydney. The only son and eldest of three children.
Ken's father moved to Papua to manage a plantation and the family lived in Port Moresby.
As a boy Ken was sent to board and be educated at Abbotsholme College in Wahroonga, New South Wales, an elite boarding school which was also attended by future prime ministers Harold Holt and William McMahon.
Ken Eather left school at 14 to become an apprentice dental mechanic. He had been in the army cadets since the age of 12 and when he turned 18 he joined the Conscript Militia, now called the Army Reserve. When war was declared in 1939 Ken sold his dental practice to form and assume command of the 2/1st Battalion in the AIF which he led with distinction in Bardia, Australia's first battle of WWII.
As officer in Command of the 25th Brigade, 7th. division, in the Markham Valley and Lae Campaign in New Guinea during the second world war, Kenneth was dubbed "Phar Lap" because of his speed with which he pushed his men down the Markham Valley.
On the 3 July 1941 Awarded Distinguished Service Order 'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during the attack on BARDIA during the period from 2 Jan 41 to 5 Jan 41.
On the 1 November 1943 awarded the United States Distinguished Service Cross 'For extraordinary heroism in action in New Guinea, during the Papuan campaign, July 23, 1942, to January 8, 1943. As Commander 25th Infantry Brigade, Australian Army
On 23 December 1943 at St.James Palace, London made Commander of the Order of the British Empire
August 1945 promoted from Brigadeer to Major General
At the end of the war he was selected to lead the Australian contingent which marched in the Victory Parade in London in June 1946.
Ken Eather retired from the Army on 18 September 1946 and became a poultry farmer in Penrith, New South Wales He became active in the Primary Producer's Association of New South Wales and was elected its president in 1953, a position he held for the next five years.
However, the death of his son Ken in a motorcycle accident at Bathurst led him to reconsider life as a farmer.
In 1958, he became the head of the Water Research Foundation of Australia, an organisation that dispensed funding to researchers investigating water related issues.
Adeline died in Sydney in 1966 and in 1968 Ken married Kathleen Carroll. Kathleen's son, Owen took the name EATHER and Ken treated him as his own son.
When Owen Eather, returned from the Vietnam war as a captain. Ken was very upset at the way the Vietnam veterans were being treated. He made it a point from then on to lead the Sydney Anzac Day marches with Owen by his side.
Major General Eather continued to lead Anzac Day marches through Sydney until 1992.
Ken Eather's grandson Eamon, joined the Australian Army Reserve and served with the International Force in East Timor.
Kenneth William Eather died at a nursing home in Mosman, New South Wales on 9 May 1993.
As the last surviving Australian general of World War II, he was given a military funeral at St. Andrew's Cathedral, Sydney Three companies of the 3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment provided an honour guard and an oration was given by General Sir Francis Hassett. Some 1,000 veterans lined George Street, Sydney to pay their last respects to Eather, who was cremated at the Northern Suburbs Crematorium.
There are many stories about Ken Eather. I do recommend the biography. 'Desert Sands, Jungle Lands'. by Steve Eather