Author Topic: NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?  (Read 3661 times)

Offline earlybird

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NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?
« on: Saturday 18 May 13 00:59 BST (UK) »
I'm presuming pastoral property owners kept records of their employees but am not sure where to start looking.
I'm particularly interested in the Para Stations (Darling  River, NSW near Wentworth) purchased in February, 1873 by two men, John Cumming of Toorak (Para East) and John Hope a landowner from Clare, South Australia (Para West). I found the sale details on Trove.

My g-g grandmother lived/worked on one of these stations in the late 1800s with her 2nd husband, James Barton Milligan. Details of location were found on the death cert. of my g-g grandmother's niece who was living with them at the time. The young girl was buried on one of these properties. I'm yet to ascertain whether the grave is marked. Looking for it will be like looking for a needle in a haystack! That aside, I'm keen to find out when the Milligans commenced and ceased working at Para and in particular whether other family members joined them.

All suggestions welcome! Thank you.
RULE - Cornwall,  SMITHAM, Smitheram (and variations of spelling) - Cornwall,
Elizabeth Jane HARRIS - Kapunda,South Aust/Wentworth,NSW/Mildura,Vic & HARRIS in Kalgoolie/Coolgardie region - West Aust., Thomas KNIGHT - BURRA, GILLESPIE

Families are like fudge, mostly sweet with a few nuts.

Offline clancam37

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Re: NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?
« Reply #1 on: Saturday 18 May 13 02:36 BST (UK) »
Hi earlybird,
Have you looked on "Cora Web" for the death of the young girl?  The site is broken into states.
Also.  Have you googled eg,  girls name+area+year and see what comes?
I've found many useful sites over the years in this way.
clancam

Offline Kaybron

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Re: NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?
« Reply #2 on: Saturday 18 May 13 05:59 BST (UK) »
Hi earlybird,
If the child died on a station and it was an accident or sudden there could possibly be an inquest record.  You can check on Ancestry. 
A couple of years ago I was trying to find out information relating to a child who might have been buried on a station in the Wilcania area in NSW.  This child died while travelling on a road from Milparinka to Wilcania and died on the side of the road.  It was believed that she was buried on a station in an unmarked grave.  I was also trying to find station records in the 1890's that might give a record of the child that died and was possibly buried on the station.  I found that the station in question had been taken over by a larger company in later years and that the station records were with this larger company.  I had to do a lot of research to find out where the records were kept and in the end found out that the records that I was seeking were housed in a building on the homestead and were destroyed in a bushfire.  The remainder of the homestead records were in Queensland with a large pastoral company such as Elders.
I obtained a death transcript of the child that died and the burial place provided by the father was not the outback station but somewhere different. 
Some of the places I contacted were the Wentworth Historical Society and also used RootsWeb Ancestry.com.au joining their forum for Outback NSW.  Also, if you can find out who the current homestead station owners are and contact them they are often aware of marked and unmarked graves on their stations.  We did have relatives in Wentworth who had previously lived on a station in the area and knew quite a few of the current station owners so he was able to contact people.  This was all done a couple of years ago so I'm a bit rustry recalling some of the things I used.
It did take lots of digging but eventually I was able to find out if records were held and where they possibly could be.
Regards Kaybron


Offline Neil Todd

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Offline earlybird

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Re: NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?
« Reply #4 on: Saturday 18 May 13 09:18 BST (UK) »
Thanks Kaybron,

Your advice makes sense - I think I'll start with the Wentworth Historical Society and try and find out who owns the property now. It may well be a big corporate body, possibly not even Australian. Could be interesting trying to locate info!
I know that John Hope's house in Clare was destroyed (or partially destroyed) by the 1983 Ash Wednesday bushfires so I'm hoping not too many records of employees were kept there! I know the details about the child's death but it would be satisfying to locate her exact place of rest.

I'm just as interested in finding out if any of my g-g grandmother's siblings followed her as we have one brother unaccounted for.

Thanks for your suggestions. Much appreciated.  :)
RULE - Cornwall,  SMITHAM, Smitheram (and variations of spelling) - Cornwall,
Elizabeth Jane HARRIS - Kapunda,South Aust/Wentworth,NSW/Mildura,Vic & HARRIS in Kalgoolie/Coolgardie region - West Aust., Thomas KNIGHT - BURRA, GILLESPIE

Families are like fudge, mostly sweet with a few nuts.

Offline earlybird

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Re: NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?
« Reply #5 on: Saturday 18 May 13 09:21 BST (UK) »
Neil, that Facebook site looks very handy - thank you!  ;D I'll get in touch with them.
RULE - Cornwall,  SMITHAM, Smitheram (and variations of spelling) - Cornwall,
Elizabeth Jane HARRIS - Kapunda,South Aust/Wentworth,NSW/Mildura,Vic & HARRIS in Kalgoolie/Coolgardie region - West Aust., Thomas KNIGHT - BURRA, GILLESPIE

Families are like fudge, mostly sweet with a few nuts.

Offline earlybird

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Re: NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?
« Reply #6 on: Saturday 18 May 13 09:23 BST (UK) »
Clancam37

I've not heard of Cora Web before so that's a new tool for me to try out. Thank you.  :)
RULE - Cornwall,  SMITHAM, Smitheram (and variations of spelling) - Cornwall,
Elizabeth Jane HARRIS - Kapunda,South Aust/Wentworth,NSW/Mildura,Vic & HARRIS in Kalgoolie/Coolgardie region - West Aust., Thomas KNIGHT - BURRA, GILLESPIE

Families are like fudge, mostly sweet with a few nuts.


Offline majm

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Re: NSW PASTORAL PROPERTIES (WENTWORTH) - Employee records?
« Reply #8 on: Saturday 18 May 13 10:03 BST (UK) »
Hi there,

Are you only looking for the exact location of the gravesite for your gg grandmother's niece, or are you also seeking information about your gg grandmother?    I ask because I have quite a number of offline NSW resources, particularly for the Western Division of NSW in the 19thC, as several of my ancestoral lines were up and down the Darling Back Blocks some were out there as drovers and shearers and Cobb and Co drivers, then there's several as Policemen, and court officials, errr for much of that century and into the 20thC ....   Decades ago I had regular access to the hardcopy volumes of the Bourke & District Historic Society's papers.   I now have the CD which is full of the 13 volumes of those papers, and is keyword searchable.

Sadly I can confirm that the various employee station records are not often found, perhaps because they were not needed to be kept in the same official way as say employee records are kept for various legal purposes today.   

Also re unmarked graves ..... with the climatic conditions and the tyranny of distance factors, there's every reason to simply understand that a grave would have been dug, and a ceremony held, perhaps with the station owner or the most senior person present conducting the service,(Overseer or Superintendent or Manager).  This does not suggest a lack of religion for the deceased, but simply that the distance to the nearest clergy may have been hundreds of miles TO him, and then hundreds of miles BACK with him and then the same distance twice more to take the clergyman back TO his home and for the person doing the fetching to return back to the station itself.   

Sadly the practical issues would have been addressed ..... the ongoing health and hygiene of the community at the station would have been paramount and the burial would have been fairly soon after the death, which if sudden could well have been without any medico present.

I will have a quick look for your gg grandmother's second husband in case I can find some item of interest.

Many cheers,  JM
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