John Gardiner was born at Chappelgarry, Aberdeenshire Scotland about 1815. He arrived in Tasmania in the ship Augustine in 1843 and went as overseer to Samuel Martin of Exton. Later he worked as overseer for Blythe and De Little. In 1850 he was moved to Victoria to work at De Little's station at Hamilton. He was still at Hamilton on Black Thursday. He kept newspapers printed in Geelong in 1851 describing the suffering after the fire.
When gold was discovered at Ballarat he decided to try his luck and he was there at the time of the Eureka Stockade.
He selected land in Connewarre on the corner of Charlemont and Lower Duneed Roads about the mid 1850s.
He enjoyed reading and was still doing this within a few days of his death. He liked reading about politics and once rode seven miles to record his vote after he was ninety.
He married Isabella, daughter of Alex and Jaen Abernathy in Aberdeenshire in 1842. They had the following children:
Isabell — born about 1846. died 10 January 1919 at Strathbogie aged 73
Jane — born 1848 in Tasmania, married William Spencer in 1869, died 13 March 1887 at Connewarre, buried in the Methodist section of the Mount Duneed Cemetery
Susannah — born at Black Hill Tasmania, married James Theophilus Mallett on 22 April 1873 at Aberdeen Street Baptist Church, died 1927 at Canterbury
Flora Gilchrist — born 1855 at Ballarat, married John Green in 1882 died 10 December 1893 aged 38, buried in the Church of England section of the Mount Duneed Cemetery
Helen — born 1852 at Geelong, married James Hill in 1876, died 1926 at Murtoa
John Arthur — born 1858 at Connewarre, married Emma Thomas Folks on 31 March 1885 at Dry Creek
A number of John's family and friends selected land at Strathbogie after 1882 and many stayed for the rest of their lives.
Isabella died on 17 April 1900 aged 85 at Strathbogie and was buried at Bonnie Doon. John died in October 1908 at the age of 93 years and 9 months and was buried with Isabella on 29 October 1908.
At the time of John's death he had 5 children, 31 grandchildren and 22 great grandchildren.
James Noble, eldest son of William and Jane (née Gray) Noble, was born in 1821 in County Tyrone, Ireland. He was the first of his family to arrive in the colony in 1840 at the age of 19 on the ship Ferguson. He initially set up business as a grocer. He was followed to the colony by his brothers John and William and sister Mary Jane in 1848. Two other brothers, George and Charles, and his father William came later. His mother died in County Tyrone, Ireland on 29 April 1855. Two sisters did not emigrate. He invested in vast amounts of real estate in the Geelong district and other areas as they were opened up for farming. He also had many business interests.
The VFL consisted of six teams (Geelong, Richmond, South Melbourne, Carlton, Collingwood and Fitzroy) each playing the other three times. Teams had 18 players and no reserves. Collingwood were premiers and the leading goalkicker was Dick Lee of Collingwood. Richmond took the "wooden spoon". Players were amateurs with players paying their own expenses. Geelong donated profits to war funds.
When Ewing Blyth was 21 in 1853, he left Norwich England to come to Australia on the Earl of Charlemont. His name on the passenger list was Ewing Bligh. He had been accused of shooting the squire's bullock and was in fear of being deported as a convict. He had allowed his name to be incorrectly used so his whereabouts could not be easily traced. After the ship was wrecked, he repeated this event by shooting a bullock to feed the survivors off the ship. This beast belonged to James Tait who had settled at Tait's Point on Lake Connewarre and who later became his father-in-law.
Ewing Blyth gained work in the district and two years later married Agnes, the 16 year old daughter of James Tait. They spent all their lives living in Lake Road on the banks of the Barwon River. Their family of five boys and 5 girls were:
James Tait Blyth — born 20 September 1860 in Connewarre, died 26 Jun 1943 in Preston aged 83, buried in the Presbyterian section of the Mount Duneed Cemetery
Frances Blyth — born 31 July 1862, married William Spencer 1888, died 19 March 1940 Geelong
Ellen Blyth — born 29 October 1864 in Connewarre, married John Elijah Kempton 1888, died 19 May 1953 Geelong
Benjamin Blyth — born 1 April 1867, married Ann Ford 1895, died 24 November 1918
Ewing John Blyth — born 1869, married Emma Isabella Taylor 1905, died 26 October 1951
Robert Ewing Blyth — born 1872, married Elisabeth Ann Martin Cameron 1896, died 1949
Mary Ann Blyth — born on 5 November 1874, married John Ford 1897, died 1945 in Geelong
Bessie Blyth — born 1877 at Mount Duneed, died 1898
Agnes Blyth — born 1879 at Mount Duneed, married Charles Marriott Burt, died 24 November 1952
Annie Blyth — born 1882 at Mount Duneed, died 22 May 1914 at Geelong
Alexander Tait Blyth — born 1884 in Mount Duneed, married Esther Hannah Challis in 1910, died 1970 in Connewarre
He was a South Barwon Shire councillor serving from 1874 until 1875.
Agnes died on 25 February 1920 and is buried in the Church of England section of the Mount Duneed Cemetery. Ewing died on 1 June 1925 and is buried with her. Their daughter Annie who died on 22 May 1914 is buried with them. Ewing Blyth Drive, a road which runs south from the Barwon Heads Hotel, is named after him. Many of their descendants still live in the district.
The grave of William and Mabel Ellis next to the grave of their son George
Six of these blocks purchased by William Batten have a frontage to Boundary Road, four have a frontage to Batten Road and two have Barwon Heads Road running through them. When he died he owned four farms in the Parish of Connewarre which were mentioned in his will by the names Robert's Farm (leased to M Muller), Hill's Farm (leased to Thomas Cadwallader), Munro's Farm (leased to John Bogan) and Mount Batten (leased to M O'Dea). He owned other blocks in Marnock Vale, Newtown and Geelong.
Four blocks in section I on the corner of Brearleys Lane, Sparrovale and Tannery Roads, Marshall were purchased from the crown on 23 July, 1855 by William Roberts Batten
John Armstrong was born in 1809, the fourth child of William and Elizabeth Armstrong. He married Veronica (usually called Vair) Scott in Scotland on 27 February, 1829. In 1839 they sailed for Australia from Greenock as bounty immigrants on the barque Palmyra. They brought with them their sons, William (aged 10), Robert Grieve (aged 6), Thomas (aged 4) and John (aged 2) and one daughter Jemima (sometimes Gemima) Scott (aged 8). Another son, Peter Brown Palmyra, was born on the voyage. He was named after the ship and its captain. Another six children were born to the couple in Australia. John and Vair were employed by Ann Drysdale of Coriyule from January 1941 to December 1844, John to plough and shepherd, Vair to cook and wash and the oldest two boys, William and Robert Grieve, to shepherd. They had brought livestock with them and after working hard and acquiring more sheep they settled at Bush Station which was also called River Station. John also had leased Black Forest and Allan Vale between 1850 and 1856. John became one of the best stud-masters in Victoria having come from many generations of sheep farmers in Scotland.
John suffered from diabetes and died on 17 October 1856 at the age of 47. Vair died on 13 June 1877 aged 68. They were buried in the Presbyterian section of the Geelong Eastern Cemetery. In 1857 his land was subdivided and sold and the stock were sold in a separate sale. Lot 2 with the homestead on 60 acres sold for £840. John's 320 acre block was situated with Torquay Road on the west side, Stewarts Road to the south, Horseshoe Bend Road to the east and Burvilles Road to the north. Armstrong Creek ran through the block. Each block had access to the creek.
Bush station was sometimes called River Station. Section M was bound by Torquay, Burvilles, Horseshoe Bend and Stewarts Road, Mount Duneed. Stewarts Reserve is the land south of this land with the creek running through it. It remained crown land. Members of the Watherong tribe who lived on this land often walked into Geelong but returned here at night. They were quiet people who made no trouble.
The monument of John Armstrong in a large plot in the Presbyterian section of the Geelong Eastern Cemetery. It was erected by the Geelong Free Church of which he was an elder for many years as a token of the regard in which he was held. Buried with him was his wife Vair who died on 13 June 1877 aged 68 years. Their 6th son Adam who was born on 5 November 1841 and died at Coriyule Drysdale on 8 December 1841 is also buried here.
In 1850 daughter, Jemima (née Armstrong), married John MacVean (often called McVean). Both were born is Scotland. They had eleven children, the last three being born in Cressy, which indicates the family had shifted to this area by 1865. They were both buried in the Presbyterian section of the St Kilda Cemetery. Alexander, Annie and Armstrong Poliah MacVean were buried with them.
Christopher Underwood, born in 1855, was the son of William Underwood and Sarah Isabella (née Robinson). He married Eliza Jane, daughter of Jesse Holman and Sarah (née Carter) Middleton. Their children were:
Sarah Ethel — born 1881 at Mount Duneed, married David Armstrong, died 1961 at Lismore
Evelyn Kate — born 1882 at Port Campbell, died 7 July 1949, buried at Geelong Eastern Cemetery
William Underwood — born 1884 at Port Campbell, died 1968 at Timboon
Eliza Jane — born 1884 at Port Campbell, died 1969 at Belmont
James Thomas — born 1886 at Port Campbell, m Maria Dickinson, died 18 September 1939 at Cobden
Jessie Ellen — born 1888 at Port Campbell, married Isaac Davis
Christopher — born 1890 at Port Campbell
Charles Stewart — born 1898, died 24 July 1921 at Camperdown
On 17 September 1872 Christopher Underwood applied to the land board for land at Connewarre south of Barwon Heads Road.
Later the family settled at Newfield about 6 miles north of Port Campbell. Christopher served on the Heytesbury Shire for 37 years and was a president of the shire. He was elected when the shire was formed in 1895. He died at Cobden on 7 September 1941 and is buried in the Port Campbell cemetery. Eliza died on 14 March 1927.
William Underwood, brother of Christopher, was born in Connewarre in 1860. He was a resident of the district of Colac for about 50 years. He purchased a property at Larpent which he farmed until about a year before he died when he settled at Elliminyt. He owned racehorses which he raced at meetings throughout the Western District. Among his horses were Balintore, Lady Haut, Twinkle and Inquisitive. He was a member of the committee of the Colac Turf Club for many years. He had been a committee member of the Colac Pastoral and Agricultural Society. He was a familiar figure at Colac and Camperdown shows where he was very successful. He was an active member of the Hunt Club.
He married Marion Hose who predeceased him. They had two sons and Three daughters. He died on 24 August 1937 and was buried at the Colac Cemetery. He left an estate valued at £15,879.
Blog Created by:
Together They Served
Torquay Museum Without Walls
Births, Deaths & Marriages Victoria
Geelong and District Database
Geelong Cemetery Index
Australian War Memorial
Surf Coast Early Schools
Barwon Heads History