Thomas, son of John and Hannah (née Jones) Preston was born on 9 December 1832 at Woodeaton in Oxfordshire. He arrived in Australia with his family at the age of 11 years in September 1844 aboard the Abberton.
He married Matilda Browne in 1855. They had the following children:
John Henry — born 29 January 1856, married Annie Sophie Roll, died in 1856 at Nhill
Harriett Ann — born 1857, died in 1951
Thomas William — born 1860, died 1937
Matilda Ellen Pargeter — born 1863, died in 1938
Sidney Elizabeth — born 1864, married John Henry George Ellis in 1884 at Geelong West, died 18 July 1924 at Geelong West aged 60, buried in the Methodist section of the Geelong Eastern Cemetery
Walter William — born in 1865, died in 1938
Robert Arthur — born in 1867, married Charlotte Ward Hart in 1897 at Lubeck, Victoria, died in 1957 aged 90 at Kew
Hannah Mary — born 1869, married Frederick Challis in 1922, died on 4 October 1949 in Geelong
Ada Caroline — born in 1871, died in 1956
Ernest Edward — born in 1873, married Edith Adelaide Ackland in 1903, died in 1932 in Geelong
Frederick Herbert — born in 1875, married Florence Searle Drew in 1901 at the Ryrie Street Presbyterian Church, died in 1966 at Geelong
Walter Charles — born in 1878, died on 1 October 1966 at Geelong
When Ada was 5 years of age she went too close to a chaff cutting machine and had the tip of one of her fingers cut off, requiring a visit to the hospital.
On 15 February 1891 a disastrous fire swept Mount Duneed causing damage to many properties. It started at the property of Andrew White, to the south of his house, then swept through the recreation reserve and the cemetery to the Preston home which was totally destroyed. The only possessions the Prestons were left with were the clothes on their backs. Nothing was insured except farm implements for £100. Thomas and Matilda's son Robert replaced everything and took over running the farm.
Thomas died on 31 August 1902 at Mount Duneed aged 69 and was buried in the Methodist section of the Mount Duneed Cemetery. Matilda died on 10 January 1911 aged 72 and was buried with him.
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 at Connewarre. 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
Elizabeth Blyth (Bessie) — 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 Mount Duneed Post Office was on the crest of the hill in Torquay Road, Mount Duneed. The house was named Kirriemuir after Jane's birth place in Scotland — photo contributed by Russ Preston
John Doherty was born in 1825 in Van Diemens Land. In 1853 he married Bridget Mary, daughter of Pat and Cath Mcinnaray (this is the name given on Bridget's death record, although it is McNerney on her marriage record). Bridget was born in Limerick, Ireland. John and Bridget had the following children:
Frederick — born 30 August 1854, died 31 March 1862
Patrick William — born 1855, married Susan Cleverly (1859-1948), died 22 May 1932
James — born 7 May 1857, died 10 March 1861
Robert — born 1858, died 10 April 1862
John — born 1860, married Ellen O’Callaghan, died 20 June 1897
John died in August 1861 at the age of 36 and was buried on 6 August. Geelong Cemetery Trust record the burial as the first in the Mount Duneed Cemetery although the cemetery was not gazetted until 1864.
In 1864 Bridget married Swiss vigneron Louis Roulier at her brother’s home. Bridget’s name is recorded as Docherty, probably a misspelling of Doherty. Three children are recorded as being buried in the grave with John Doherty — 1 year old Louis Roulier on 1 September 1866, 1 year old Charles Roulier on 9 December 1867 and a Roulier child of unknown age.
Louis bought land in Whites Road, between Williams and Ghazeepore Roads about 1874. A family member has said that Louis worked for Andrew White of Hillside who lived in adjoining land. It is known that grapes were once grown at Hillside, so his skills may have been useful for vine dressing.
Louis died in 1880 and was buried on 17 December in the Catholic section of the Mount Duneed Cemetery. He is the only one recorded on the headstone. Bridget died on 27 May 1890 at the age of 55 and was buried with him.
When Bridget died on 27 May 1890 she owned 3 blocks in allotment B of section 21. These blocks were in Whites Road between Ghazeepore and Williams Roads.
The grave of William and Mabel Ellis next to the grave of their son George
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Barwon Heads History