The Story of ‘Myrtle Vale’ – Part 1

The story of the Friend family in New South Wales has been well told in the pages of Barbara Hufton & Enid Friend’s family history publication ‘Remembering Friends’. For that reason, the particular details of the family’s arrival and temporary place of settlement in the new colony need not be reproduced here. This is a... Continue Reading →

Three Wheatleys

In family history research, you often come across the problem of having multiple descendants of the same name. That almost no longer existent custom of naming the first son (or at least one son) after the father. This was the case for the descendants of my maternal grandfather (Frederick Otho Alchin). His mother was the... Continue Reading →

Waggallalah: Murder, Methodism, and marriage

Waggallalah, also referred to as Wagahrallah, refers to a rural property in the parish of Lerida, to the south-east of Gunning, New South Wales. When pioneer Methodist preacher, John Wheatley (snr) moved, with his family to the Gunning region around 1850, he launched a campaign of zealous religious conversions in the Goulburn/Gunning Circuit from his son's property... Continue Reading →

The Steads at Gundaroo

The story of the Steads of Gundaroo has shaky origins, intriguing details and an unfortunate tragic ending. Before we can detail what we do know, we must first deal with what we do not. John Henry Stead, born circa 1804, is the focus of this story. It appears that he was born in London, however... Continue Reading →

Stories from the Alchin/Wheatley Line

The next cluster of stories that will be appearing here are mainly concerned with members of my maternal grandfathers family line. The line is comprised the Alchin and Wheatley families and those that married into them, including; Pollard, Brown, Stead, O'Donnell and Shaw. Details on these two family groups, and the members who are most... Continue Reading →

Maria Brown and the mystery portrait

Photographs of our Australian colonial ancestors are hard to come by. Painted and sketched portraits are even rarer. Fortunately, one of my ancestors (my maternal grandmothers great-grandmother) was not shy of camera or canvas. Stashed behind an old refrigerator, in my grandparent's garage, are two portraits that were among items passed down and stored after... Continue Reading →

Dalton: bailed up

In November 1863, during the hight of the Australian bushranger period, the Melbourne Age reported that "the hitherto quite village of Dalton, on Jerrawa Creek has become the theatre of as daring an act of bush ranging as the already famed Canowindra". Only a handful of accounts exist that detail the incident which involved three... Continue Reading →

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