Early Settlement In Gundagai And Tumut (By George Clout) 4 March 1924 The Tumut Advocate and Farmers and Settlers' Adviser
ARTICLE NO. 6. THE PIONEERS.
The toil of it none may share ;
By yourself must the way he won.
Brief mention might be made of
the following, as very little informa- tion is available with regard to them or their antecedents : In 1831 Mr. James Thorn and his brothers took
up Wantabadgery and Gobbujurmbba- lin ; William Guise formed Curinin-
droo at the junction of Tarcutta Creek with the Murrumbidgee. This was later on merged into the Boram- bolo run. A station was formed by the Thompsons at Micky's Corner,
Kimo Hill, in 1830. Oura and Eun- onyhareenyah were established in 1832, but by whom does not appear very clear. In 1833 John Gordon formed Borambola and Robert H. Best the Wagga Wagga run, south of the Murrumbidgee. Another run which has been overlooked was that of Yellowin, which was formed byThomas Wilkinson sr. in 1840.
The Brungle run, on the Tumut River, found a very early occupant in John Keighran, or, as he was more familiarly known to some peo- ple, "Johnnie Katharine." He was originally an hotelkeeper at Bargo. The creek, now universally known as Brungle Creek, was formerly known as Katharine's Creek, from the name,
or alias, of the owner of the run. There were several members of the Keighran family, one of whom, Pat. Keighran. kept some noted race- horses later on, amongst them being Mormon who won the champion race at Hobart in 1860, Playboy who won the Ballarat Cup in 1864, and Exile who won the same race in 1866. The adjoining run (Bombolee) was held by a man named Howell, but ere long it came into the possession of Mr. George Shelley, and eventually theRankin Bros, secured it. The Rankins came to Australia in 1844, and, after an unsuccessful search for land in the Darling country, they came to Tumut and secured the Bombolee estate in 1854. Their occupancy does not come under the head of pioneer- ing, the pioneering work being then done. Suffice to say that their occu- pancy of the Bombowlee run was apparently not a great financial suc- cess. While Mr. Shelley was the holder of Bombolee a lawsuit ofmore than ordinary interest eventua- ted. The plaintiff in the case was Mr. George Shelley and the defend-
ant Mr. John Keighran of Brungle. The matter in dispute was wilful trespass on the Bombolee run by Keighran. The late Mr. Thomas Piper, who died in Tumut two or three years ago at the advanced age of 93 years, was an important wit-ness in the case. He was shown an
order by one of Keighran's shepherds which ran : "I hereby authorise myshepherds to feed my sheep up to Wyangle Creek, and by the hills to Brungle Creek downwards. (Signed) John Keighran. Mr. Piper at once told Shelley of the trespass and he
entered "an action against Keighran in the Supreme Court In Sydney. Mr.
Shelley conclusively proved the boun- daries of the two runs by four wit-
nesses, and Keighran lost the case and had to pay all expenses. It would appear that Dr. Clayton was the original holder of Blowering, the revered parent of Bland of that ilk so well known to Tumut people. It afterwards came into the posses- sion of Whitty and later on into the hands of E. G. Brown, who for many long years might easily have been termed the "uncrowned King of Tu-
mut," as he, during his long resi- dence here, was the first and fore- most in every movement that tended towards the progress of the district. He was the first Mayor of Tumut, and for a number of years represen- ted the district in Parliament. Mr. Brown came to Tumut in 1831, and in the early stages of his career did a big business amongst cattle. The present writer's first knowledge ofhim was in the early sixties when he was taking a large draft of cattle, some 1200 head, from Blowering to Maiden's Punt on the Murray. Mr. T. Piper, who, as I have stated, died
quite recently at the age of 93, was a veritable encyclopaedia of know- ledge as regards early settlement. He came to the district with his father when a boy and spent a long life here. His first employment was with Peter Stuckey at a station be- low Goulburn, afterwards at Willie Ploma under the same employer, andthen at Wyangle with Mr. George Shelley, finally settling at Bombow- lee Creek, where he died. The Spring Creek and Red Hill properties are now in the possession of Mr. F. Campbell. The original holder was Edward Hughes, or "Old Ned" Hug- hes, as he was more familiarly called. He was afterwards joined by Mr. W. Kiley or as a co-partner. Mr. Kiley came to the colony In 1837, and was a very early occupant of the runs mentioned. They aftarwards came
into the possession of his son, the
late Mr. P. Kiley, who carried them on to much advantage financially un- til finally disposing of them to Mr. F. Campbell. W. A. Brodrible was a man of considerable note in the early periods. He arrived here in 1836 and formed a sheep-station on the Murrumbidgee near Gundagai. He also had an interest in a huge pas- toral property near Goulburn . Dr.
Andrews also tells, us that Brodrible
formed Manus Station, County Sel - wyn, in 1838, and sold it to John
Stewart in 1839. It afterwards came
into the possession of T. A. Murray.
Another notability of a far-back per- iod was Mr. Daniel French sr., who arrived in the colony in 1840, and
was for a long number of years a conspicuous figure in this district. His first employment was as a shep- herd for Mr. John Keighran of Brun- gle Station, and later on he was the occupier of land which was formerly
held by "Joe" Cox, the first wheat
grower in the Murrumbidgee. It was in the thirties that Mr, James Tyson, the king of Australian pastor-
allsts, commenced his career from
very humble beginnings. He first had employment with Mr. Vine, of Douglas Park, at a salary of £30 per
year. Later on he entered the ser- vice of Mr. Henry O'Brien, of Douro. He afterwards took charge of O'Brien's station, on the lower Mur- rumbidgee, and there he remained until he decided on forming a sta- tion, in company with his brother, on the Billabong. After putting up a hut, yard and paddock, he went toBurragorang for a draft of cattle which a Mr. Graham, of Campbell- town, had placed at the disposal of the Brothers Tyson. He cooked as much rations as he could carry on
his horse, and of money he had one shilling, which, when he reachedGundagai, was demanded for cross- ing on the punt. Tyson determined to save the shilling as he might want it, so he swam the river, if not at the risk of his, life, certainly to the detriment of his tucker. After much trial and trouble Tyson got thecattle together, and drove them as far as the Murrumbidgee, where he met his brother, who had been com- pelled to abandon their newly-formed station on account of the water hav- ing utterly failed, and who had sold the run and improvements for. £12, but did not get the money. Not a very brilliant transaction from a financial point of view. A biographer says of Mr. James Tyson that heowed his good fortune to his energy,
his untiring industry and his great self-denial. He never indulged in wine, spirits or tobacco in his life, and his temper was so even that un- der the most trying circumstances no profane word was ever heard to escape his lips. Amongst other not- abilities who were prominent in these districts in the early days maybe mentioned Charles Cowper, after wards Sir Charles, who was offered a lucrative position by the then Gov- ernor, Sir Richard Bourke, but his preferred sheep-farming. He went to reside in the county of Argyle. and held sheep stations on the Upper Murray. In after life he was one of the greatest figures in Australian politics. Another prominent politic-
ian was William McLeay. He came to Sydney in 1830 and was for 15 years engaged in squatting pursuits on the Murrumbidgee. Sir John Hay
also was an Upper Murray squatter. His arrival was in 1838. It is wor- thy of note that many of these early pioneers were not only men of great energy physically, but were also of huge proportions. Such, for instance, were Hume, Tyson, Bradley and Faithful. It was the writer's privi- lege on many occasions to have seen the two last-named gentlemen, and they, like the Hawkesbury natives of that early period, were veritable "Sons of Anak".