<< Previous - Next >>


Journal by itellya

There was not one mention of the Kidgells in Colin McLear's A DREAMTIME OF DROMANA so why were William and Henrietta buried at Dromana? I wouldn't bother to ask this question on the HISTORY OF DROMANA TO PORTSEA Facebook page because the only reply from the so-called true locals would be "because they were dead."

For a local or family history to be published at a price that potential buyers can afford, it must be kept fairly short, so not every early resident is going to be mentioned. Another reason some pioneers are not mentioned is that oral history sources could not be expected to make reference to everyone they knew. Imagine how many families you could recall if you were asked for anecdotes about relatives and neighbours from your childhood days.

Parish maps, post office directories and rate records help greatly in finding some of the early pioneers and once an early family is identified in a particular area, trove can help to follow members of that family as they move away from the nest. Rarely is such migration mentioned in localised histories because few readers (apart from the person's family) would be greatly interested. But apart from many Victorian lads trying their luck in Western Australia during the 1890's depression, finding future wives during both world wars near training camps, and chasing employment opportunities such as Michael Cain of Rye and Edward Jones of Moorooduc at Adelaide,there were teachers such as Richard Gilsenan of Bulla and J.W.Hazledine of Picola and bank employees such as Gerald Richardson, (treasurer of the Mornington Bowling Club who helped to found the Rosebud club) who transferred from one place to another quite frequently.

With the assistance of Scott Jangro and family tree circles, itellya is able to follow these pioneers as they seek opportunities, without the limitations imposed by the need to publish an affordable book. THANKS, SCOTT!

I need to find my full Kidgell biography, which goes back to William Kidgell's father, a minister. However, my failure to find it so far has led to several new discoveries. As I know nothing personally about 99.99% of the pioneers I research, imagine my delight in finding the connection between these pioneers and my old mate,Mawler!

Mr William Kidgell, of Dromana, died yesterday at a private hospital in Burwood. Mr Kidgell, who was aged 89 years, came to Australia in 1852, and first lived in Emerald Hill and Brighton. He carried on the business of Morley and Co., contractors, from 1877 to 1930. Mr Kidgell was one of the founders of the Melbourne Savage Club, of which he was honorary treasurer for 36 years, a vice-president, and later a life member. He was a member of the Employers Federation executive for many years, and also a president of the Master Carriers' Association, of which he was one of the founders.

Mr Kidgell has left a widow, four daughters, two sons, eleven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Thefuneral will leave the chapel of W. G.Apps and Sons Pty. Ltd., High street, St.
Kilda, for the Dromana Cemetery at 10 a.m. to-day. (P.4, Argus, 29-8-1939.)


KIDGELL - On the 28th August at private hospital, Burwood, William of Coolamai, Dromana, beloved husband of Hettle M and loving father of Marlon, Ruby (deceased), Morley, Ethel (Mrs A C Smith) Leonard?, Phyllis (Mrs Douglas deceased), Marjorie (Mrs G Rust) and Dorothy (Mrs R,Mcllroy) In his 90th year, a colonist of 86 years. (Private Interment at Dromana )
KIDGELL - On the 28th August William loving grandfather of Alleen (Mrs R J Clarke), Robert, Jack and Joan Kldgell, Harold Douglas, June Smith, William Kldgell, Gwen and Geoff Kldgell, Phyllis Mcllroy and John Rust, and great grandfather of Geoff and Janet Clarke and Robin Douglas. (Both P.8, Argus, 29-8-1939.)

William’s wife Henrietta Maria (nee Morley) was known as Hettie. Their diamond wedding notice has been posted in Hettie’s entry (29-2-1940.)
In 1919, William Kidgell was assessed on 1.5 acres and buildings , crown allotments 3-5, section 12 (Dromana Township.) These allotments fronted both Codrington and Verdon Sts 40 metres from Hodkinson St and extending 60 metres inland. Melbourne Brindle’s pre 1919 map of Dromana shows the Kidgell house (Coolamai) fronting the east side of Codrington St 40 metres from Hodgkinson St. The house was therefore on lot 3, granted to W.Withers. William had probably purchased lots 4 and 5 from descendants of R.D.Quinan, first teacher at Dromana Common School who committed suicide because of the shame of a book keeping error he’d made in his part time job for the Kangerong Road Board.

William and Hettie retired to Dromana but would have been visitors every summer and most likely every weekend during the footy season to see the lad play before and after his stint with South Melbourne. Morley might have been still playing for Dromana when his sister Dorothy married Richard McIlroy a descendant of an early pioneer at Red Hill who may also have been playing for Dromana like one of his Cleine relatives had in 1902; Red Hill didn’t have its own team until 1929.
KIDGELL….Given names-Dorothy….Event-Marriage
Spouse's family name- MCILROY…. Spouse's given name-Richd
Reg. year-1924……Reg. no-70
Dorothy McIlroy died in 1985 (reg. no.13963.)

A lad named Kidgell shows promise of becoming a footballer. (Morley –surname-was another Dromana footballer mentioned in this 1902 match.) P.4, Mornington Standard, 6-9-1902.
Henry Morley Kidgell - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Henry Morley Kidgell (27 March 1881 – 30 January 1948) was a former Australian rule

Henry married Doris Mackenzie of Caulfield in 1908.

A biography giving details of William’s father and containing many other articles such as the above footballer suggesting a bridge between Spencer and Clarendon Sts* has been written. It just has to be found!
* NEW BRIDGE OVER YARRA. Petition by Carriers.
The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957) Saturday 2 July 1921 p 16 Article
... ' Association of' Victoria, held on Thursday evening, the president (Mr. H. Morley Kidgell) said that the new ..

29-2-1940. MRS HENRIETTA MARIA (HETTIE) KIDGELL (nee Morley*.)
KIDGELL.— On February 28, at Dromana,Maria,widow of the late William Kidgell, loving
mother of Marion (Mrs. O. J. Kidgell), Ruby(deceased), Morley, Ethel (Mrs. A. C. Smith),
Lenora Phyllis (Mrs. H. G. Douglas, deceased), Marjorie (Mrs. G. Rush), and Dorothy (Mrs.
R. McIlroy), in her 85th year. Private interment at Dromana.

KIDGELL. — On February 28, Henrietta Maria, loving grandmother of Aileen (Mrs. R. J.
Clark), Robert, Jack and Jonn Kidgell, Marjorie (deceased) and Harold Douglas, June Smith,
William Kidgell, Gwen and Jeoff Kidgell, John Rush and Phyllis McIlroy, and great grandmother
of Geoff and Janet Clarke, Robin Douglas and Bruce Kidgell. (Both P.1, The Age, 29-2- 1940.)

* Mr. and Mrs, Kidgell. Mr. and Mrs. William Kidgell, who celebrated their diamond wedding at Dromana last week, were married in St.James' Cathedral sixty years ago by Rev. Canon Beecher. Mr. Kidgell is a son of the late Rev. and Mrs. H.Kidgell, and Mrs. Kidgell is the daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. W. Morley, who were among the earliest settlers in Sandridge. Mrs. Kidgell proudly boasts that she attended the ball at Government House, Melbourne, in 1868, in honour of the Duke of Edinburgh. Her father was one of the first mayors of Sandridge. A brother of Mr, Kidgell lived In St- Vincent's' Place, Albert Park, for many years. (P.7, Record, Emerald Hill, 25-4-1936.)
I WAS BORN IN 1943 AND MORLEY WAS ABOUT TWO YEARS YOUNGER SO THIS IS DEFINITELY HIM. John William Kidgell and Myrtle Gladys Meadows had married in 1942. Morley’s dad, son of the South Melbourne footballer and Doris Emma (McKenzie), died in 1975.
Family Notices
The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957) Thursday 23 August 1945 p 2 Family Notices
... ). KIDGELL.-On July 20, at Queen Victoria, to Myrtle and John-a son (John Morley)
I know nothing about any other people discussed in this chronology except what I have read but this one is personal. When I moved from Ascot Vale to Kensington circa 1950, one of my first friends in the new place was Morley Kidgell. When we had a game of end to end on the South Ken Flat south of Derby St and not far from his place in Tennyson St, he always wore his South Melbourne jumper and now I know why he was so proud of it. Morley and I opened the bowling for the Holy Trinity (C. of E.) Sunday School cricket team. Morley’s family had a T.V. and my brother and I spent many hours watching mainly Westerns. When they finished, Morley’s stepbrother, Normie Meadows, used to make us laugh by pretending to empty the drip tray to get rid of the blood. Morley’s dad was just about paralysed and if I remember correctly, an auntie Vi was helping his mum look after him. When I bought my first car, Normie, who soon after married Florence Hamilton of Market St Kensington, used to keep it running for me. Norm was a very popular leader of the church youth group (Y.A.F.) until he and Florence moved away to establish their own home. Morley was going out with Barbara Goatley of the Oak Park area whom he’d met at a Y.A.F. camp and as I was going out with a girl from Glenroy, I used to drive him home to his new home near the Syndal Station on Friday nights, play cards till 3 a.m. and then be woken by Morley’s mum at 7 a.m. with a hearty breakfast. After almost waking up, I’d drive him to work in the city, maybe first to Myer, his first place of employment, and Dunklings where he forged a successful career, eventually, after studying hard, becoming a valuer of jewellery, and consultant to Dunklings after establishing his own business, with his wife, Barbara. My wife and I enjoyed holidays in Morley’s caravan at Peninsula Gardens and later his holiday home at Rye.

His children displayed similar drive achieving the same sort of success in their careers as their father had. Morley also had success as a basketball coach and referee. The children lived for this sport and no doubt inherited the Henry Morley Kidgell genes regarding sporting ability and height, Melinda, the only daughter, was quite tall when I last saw the family when staying at their holiday home near Thompson St, Rye. Unfortunately, I have lost contact with my old friend as he seems to have left his home by the Yarra where I last visited after the freeway had led to his East Doncaster home being compulsorily acquired.

Morley’s given name came from the maiden name of William Kidgell’s widow. The South Melbourne footballer was named Henry Morley Kidgell, the first given name being the masculine version of his mother’s first given name and the second his mother’s maiden name. William Kidgell spent his working life working for Morley Brothers prior to retiring to Dromana and like his son,(Henry) Morley Kidgell, was president of the Carriers’ Association. H.M.Kidgell was responsible for suggesting that a bridge be built to link Spencer St., Melbourne and Clarendon St., South Melbourne and you’ll be surprised how recently the bridge was built. Details such as above, their location in Dromana etc. will be found in my extensive KIDGELL/MORLEY BIOGRAPHY; once I locate it, I will paste it here or provide a link. The biography came about when I stumbled on an obituary for William Kidgell before I started this chronology.

A "Kidgell, Dromana" search on trove illustrated just how limiting the quotation marks are, but also showed that apart from William retiring to Dromana, his descendants became permanent residents of Dromana.

Viewed: 1091 times
Likes: 0
by itellya Profile | Research | Contact | Subscribe | Block this user
on 2016-10-30 22:56:05

Itellya is researching local history on the Mornington Peninsula and is willing to help family historians with information about the area between Somerville and Blairgowrie. He has extensive information about Henry Gomm of Somerville, Joseph Porta (Victoria's first bellows manufacturer) and Captain Adams of Rosebud.

Do you know someone who can help? Share this:


by janilye on 2016-10-31 04:21:54
by bristolbuoy on 2019-06-25 12:17:48

Is the Melbourne Brindle’s pre 1919 map of Dromana for sale anywhere? If so, can you point me to the right direction as I would like to either purchase it or download it?
Many thanks, Jemima

by itellya on 2019-06-25 15:09:07

If you're local, Ill sell you one at the Dromana Museum (Old Shire Office) between Verdon and Codrington Sts on Sunday July 7 between 2 and 4 p.m. You wouldn't happen to be the terrific Jemma Wiseman would you? If it's no on both counts, email the Dromana and District Historical Society on .

Register or Sign in to comment on this journal.