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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Linden & Colonel Parrott

Col. Rowe (first Mayor of Manly) extreme left and
Parrott (father of Fighting Parrott's) seated third left

The history of Linden is often overlooked perhaps because of its ‘seeming isolation’ tucked away as it is between the townships of Springwood and Woodford.  However, a cursory look often turns up some interesting details.

In 1881, for example, T.S. Parrott sued Lieutenant Colonel Baynes in the Metropolitan District Court for the recovery of £40 being the sum owed to him for the supervision of work he carried out on a villa erected at Linden in the Blue Mountains.  Parrott won.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[1]<!--[endif]-->

But, who were these two gentlemen and how do they fit into the wider social history of New South Wales (NSW) and indeed the Blue Mountains?  Parrott, who is thought to have owned land at Faulconbridge also, was in fact English born civil engineer and soldier, Thomas Samuel Parrott (1842-1917) who, after working in Queensland and Victoria, took a post with the NSW Department of Lands survey branch, in the 1870s.  He enlisted in the NSW corps of volunteers around the same time and was commissioned lieutenant in 1874.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[2]<!--[endif]-->   

Interestingly, Parrott was just one of many who submitted a design for a bridge to join Dawes and Milsons Point at the site of the present Harbour Bridge.  Parrott’s plan for a two storey bridge was submitted as early as 1879 and would have seen railway traffic delegated to use the top level while horse and carriages, the bottom.  It is interesting to note that these early plans came to nought because the current Harbour Bridge was erected and opened in the 1930s.

Parrott served in the Sudan in 1885 and in 1886, at the behest of the NSW Colonial Secretary, visited Europe and North America to report on their coastal and harbour defences.  He served in South Africa in 1900, as a special service officer, and formed a regiment of mounted civil engineers known as the Australian Pioneers (Flying Sappers).<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[3]<!--[endif]-->  Parrot retired in 1902 and migrated to South Africa where he served as a transport officer during World War 1.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[4]<!--[endif]-->
John Hammond and Arthur Kersey Parrott, sons of the above, owned land at Woodford.

Information suggests that a Colonel Baynes acquired Portion 14 at Linden in 1879, and - as the newspaper report above confirmed - commenced building a cottage there in 1881. The name of the cottage was ‘Verulam’ and church services were conducted in the abode in 1887.  Baynes was in fact Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Beindge Baynes who, together with William Henderson, Richard Beindge Baynes and William Pritchard, became ‘Trustees of Linden Park’ in October 1887.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[5]<!--[endif]-->  

Baynes was mentioned in The Australian Town and Country Journal in 1889.  The journal carried details of the placement of a foundation stone, by Baynes, for the new parsonage at Wentworth Falls, on behalf of Mrs. Henry Bell.  It would seem that the building fund had been considerably boosted with the assistance of donations from his relative, Mrs. Henry Bell, and Miss Edith Walker.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[6]<!--[endif]-->

Baynes died in 1889 and the property was bequeathed to his sons Richard and Frederick.  Nothing is known about Frederick but Richard married Annie A Bell in 1888. Richard served as an alderman on Mulgoa and Nepean Councils until he retired in 1925.<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[7]<!--[endif]-->  The couple had four sons; Richard Henry Beindge, Frederick Charles Beindge, George Nepean Beindge and Reginald Frank Beindge Baynes.  Richard, Frederick and George all perished as a direct result of the First World War, while Reginald, who flew a Maurice Farman Biplane, was the only one to survive.  That small hamlet encountered some interesting characters.  

<!--[if !supportEndnotes]-->

<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[1]<!--[endif]--> Sydney Morning Herald, 13.9.1881, p. 7.
<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[2]<!--[endif]--> C. Neumann, ‘Parrott, Thomas Samuel (1842-1917),’ Australian Dictionary of Biography, Vol. 11, 1988.
<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[5]<!--[endif]--> Sydney Morning Herald, 22.10.1887, p. 13.
<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[6]<!--[endif]--> Australian Town and Country Journal, 16.11.1889, p. 14.
<!--[if !supportFootnotes]-->[7]<!--[endif]--> Penrith City Council website.

Family History - Alfred Farrell Bath Stewards

Alfred Farrell, though not a Springwood or Blue Mountains resident, married into the Greentree family who settled in the Hawkesbury district of New South Wales.  He was the paternal grandfather of Shirley Evans...this is her story.  

An example of steamers like "Cintra"

I never knew my paternal grandfather, Alfred Farrell.  He died in 1925, not long after my parents were married.  Despite his Irish surname he was born in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1866, parents Thomas and Sarah nee Hinchcliffe.  Thomas was a journeyman iron moulder but Alfred did not follow in his father’s footsteps.

My mother, who was a devout Catholic, remembered him as an extremely bigoted anti Catholic.  When she married my Anglican father in a Catholic Church, Alfred waited outside on the Church steps to congratulate the happy couple after the ceremony.  Of course he did not hate my mother – she was universally loved – he just hated her religion.  Ironically, three of his six sons married Catholics.

My father told me that Alfred had been a ship’s steward prior to his marriage but he had pursued a life on shore as a family man.  We believe he probably met my grandmother, Daisy Greentree, while organising his ship’s laundry.  Daisy was working in a steam laundry, contributing to the family’s upkeep.  The Greentree family had been living very comfortably on a prosperous farm at Freeman’s Reach until father, Robert, died prematurely at the age of 51.  His widow, Hannah nee Bushell, burdened by a large family, lost the farm and moved to Sydney.

Pamela Smith, my friend and colleague, was an early subscriber to and volunteered to do some research for me.  She found Alfred’s name on ships’ crew lists.  Sure enough he had been a steward – a Bath Steward!  He made a number of trips on the “Cintra”, a cargo steamer, plying the Australian coast and carrying passengers as well as cargo.
I had no idea what a Bath Steward was so I hastened to consult Google.  I found Emily Post’s 1970 edition of “Etiquette” quoted as follows:

“Steamer Tips
If you like your bath at a certain hour you would do well to ask your bath steward for it as soon as you go on board (unless you have a private bath of your own), since the last persons to speak get the inconvenient hours – naturally.  To many the daily salt bath is the most delightful feature of the trip.  The water is always wonderfully clear and the towels are heated.”

Later, under tips, she recommended five shillings for the bath steward.  It is not clear if this tip covered the whole trip or just one bath.

I also found a section on tipping in the United States “Rotarian”, June 1940:
“Passengers occupying rooms without a bath, consequently requiring the services of the bath steward to prepare a bathroom and arrange bath hours, should tip this steward from $1.50 to $2.00 for the voyage”

Also from Google I found that there were 6 Bath Stewards aboard the “Titanic”, two of whom survived the disaster.  There were also on board a number of Turkish Bath attendants.
Alfred seemed to adjust to a life on land, working first as a trolleyman carting timber and then as a mill foreman, and raising six boys in Leichhardt.

Shirley Evans

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Early Residents - Honore & Camille Marie

Honore Marie was born about 1828 at Dinan in the north west province of Brittany in France. He migrated to Noumea, New Caledonia, where he took the position of Chief Warder at the prison. Together with his wife, Camille, he migrated to NSW arriving on the ship Colonial in 1869 at the age of 41. They took up residence at Stanmore.
Over the years the Maries acquired a number of properties in Wilson St, Newtown. They expanded their holdings by acquiring a number of portions in the vicinity of White Cross, North Springwood. A homestead, Bombanoi, of 4 rooms and roofed with iron, was erected on part of these holdings (portion 9) and an extensive orchard and vineyard was developed.
The Marie property portion 121 was sold in the late 1890s to John Walker who built a cottage called White Cross. On portion 9, site of Bombanoi, the first school in North Springwood was established in 1899 but it closed in 1906 due to lack of pupils. The equipment was transferred to Singles Ridge Subsidised School.
Meanwhile, Camille Marie, born in about 1831, was engaged as French teacher at Miss Jane Thetis Hooper’s school for young ladies at Fort Street, Sydney. Camille encouraged Miss Hooper to buy land at North Springwood and establish the school Hartlands there in 1889, and Camille continued to teach French there.
By the turn of the century, Honore Marie, now in his seventies, was suffering ill health and was unable to work. The family moved to one of the cottages in Wilson Street, Newtown. At this stage Camille kept on teaching, fully supporting her husband and paying his debts out of her own income. Honore Marie died in 1910.
Bombanoi was later demolished and by 1915 there was no trace of the improvements made by Honore to the property. The freestone front fence was carted away by Thomas Summerhayes in the 1940s to build a new cottage, now known as Wits End. The Winmalee High School occupies the land (portion 9) on which Honore Marie started his North Springwood orchard and vineyard.

Shirley Evans
From: The Making of a Mountains Community

Early Residents - George E. Cass MLA

George was born at Greenwich, England in 1844 to George Edwin and Harriet Cass. He arrived in Australia as a young man c1864, and in 1871 married Catherine McCubbin (b1849). The couple went on to raise a large family which consisted of George E.B. born c1872, Frederick Easterling c1874, Harry Whyte c1879, Arthur Monk c1880, Ernest J. c1882, Harriet M. c1883, Ethel K. c1888, Ellen I. c1891, and there is believed to have been one other.
An industrious man, Cass was a newspaper proprietor, pastoralist and spirit merchant and may  have had some financial connection with the Royal Hotel. He appeared in various newspaper articles during the period 1886–7, and in September 1886 he was noted as entertaining at ‘Mrs Brown’s Royal Hotel’, Springwood for he and his wife’s sixteenth wedding anniversary. The Nepean Times article attributed him with being ‘very energetic in bringing the pretty village of Springwood more prominently before the public’. He may even have had financial interests in the Royal Hotel at that time.
Cass was principal of G.E. Cass & Co. wine and spirit merchants, owner of the Nyngan Times and Dubbo Newspaper and owner of the Coonamble Independent from 1876 until his death. He was not a journalist by occupation and his ownership of the newspaper chain is thought to have been simply commercial speculation.
He was MLA for the Bogan from 1880–7 and 1889–92. The new parliament for 1891 comprised Sir Henry Parkes, Varney Parkes and Edmund Barton representing Sydney and St Leonards, H. Dawson the Monaro, S. Lees Nepean, W.C. Wall Mudgee, R.B. Wise Sydney South, Cass The Bogan, R. Barbour the Murray and T.T. Ewing the Richmond. As one can see, he mixed with some well-known and powerful gentlemen, many with surnames well known in the Blue Mountains area. W.C. Wall, D.R. Wall and Ignatius Wall held the tenure on kerosene shale outcrops in the Jamieson Valley c1888.
Cass was listed in the 1884 Sands Directory living or having rooms at 122 George Street, Sydney where he conducted a commission agents business. Messrs J.J. Buckland and E.N. Chapman were two other gentlemen in the same business, and C.J. Buckland, located in Pitt Street, Sydney was the agent for Crown Lands.
He retained ties with Springwood long after he left and was well liked, talented and reputed to be able to play the concertina with his toes. He died on 6 April 1892.

Early Residents - Ernest William Cansdell

Cansdell, together with Austin Chapman, was the owner of 28 acres of land subdivided as the Blue Mountains Estate. Ernest is thought to have built the home now named Banool c1908, which is still located at Martin Place, Linden. The home is referred to on subdivision plans of the time as ‘the bungalow’.
In January 1914 the Nepean Times reported that he had a successful land sale at Linden, and that property agent Mr J.T. Wall purchased the home for Mr J.J. Anderson.
Cansdell, born in NSW c1863, married Charlotte M. Hyland in 1888, and the couple had several children.  He died in 1933.
Charles Stuart Cansdell, a city magistrate and acting judge of the Western Districts in 1884, is thought to have been related. Other city magistrates of the time were Thomas and Alfred Broughton, and Michael and Robert Chapman.  J.J. Anderson, R. Southouse, Frederick Marks & Mr. McIlwraithe were subsequent owners.