The Joseph brothers

After publishing the post about soldiers from Sorell in WWI, I had a comment from Martin Lovell about his great uncles Morris Joseph and Paul Joseph. Apparently three brothers went to war and only one, his grandfather Erle Joseph, returned. Martin added some photos and more information on the Facebook post and has given me permission to use them to write a post on this blog.

On 14 July 1880 William Morris JOSEPH aged 26 married Emma Amelia McGUINNESS(sp) aged 22. The witnesses to the marriage were Garrett C Joseph and Alfred McGuinness. They were married at the Carlton Congregational Church which first opened in 1841.

 

Between 1881 and 1896 the couple had 6 children – 5 boys and 1 girl; all births registered at Sorell. In most cases their father, a farmer at Carlton, was the informant.

  • 1881 Morris Frank De Witt Joseph – usually known as Frank
  • 1884 Claude Hermann Graynado Morris Joseph
  • 1886 Morris Pitt Gladstone Joseph – usually known as Pitt
  • 1888 Paul Hamilton Joseph
  • 1891 Earle James Hugh Joseph
  • 1896 Emma Morris Pearl Joseph

The property named Morrisdale which fronted onto Carlton River is shown on the map. I am unsure if the family lived on the property but according to the silver wedding anniversary notice for William and Emma’s marriage, William was living at Prospect Farm in Carlton, his father James had been living at Bushy Park, Carlton and his father in law had been living at Bay View House in Carlton.

By 1908, we know the property is now known as Morrisdale as Paul Joseph, who was studying to be a minister, took over the vacant pulpit for an evening service at the Congregational Church.

Paul was often mentioned in the local papers between 1908 and 1918.   In 1910, he was appointed assistant pastor of the Port Adelaide Congregational Church for a twelve month period. He then became one of the first students to enter the newly established Congregational Training College in Adelaide where he was stationed at Semaphore and had charge of the Mission Church there. But in 1916, Paul bought the property Montefiore in Adelaide. He was planning to build a temple on North Terrace from a fortune supposedly being left to him. But alas this did not happen. Read this newspaper article about the full story.

Looking at another of the brothers who went to war, we focus on Morris Pitt Gladstone Joseph known as Pitt. He seemed to enjoy the water as in 1904 he enlisted with the navy when the HMS Challenger arrived in Hobart. We know this is the correct Pitt Joseph as it is later mentioned in his service records that he had been in the navy.

Pitt must have left before his five year term was up as in 1908 he was being challenged to a boxing match by I.T.A. Stacey from Nubeena. The match was to take place in Hobart and the best of 15 rounds. Winner to take ten pounds.

Paul and Pitt both died in World War I.

By the time Paul joined in August 1916, he was married with one child. His wife Dorothy Leigh Joseph lived in Welland in South Australia but at some time during the war, she moved to Morrisdale property at Carlton. Paul spent time training in Australia before embarking on the Seang Bee  on 10 February 1917. Paul served time in the field in France as originally part of the 9th Reinforcements of the 48th Battalion. He was declared missing in action on 5 May 1918 but on 20 July 1918 was formally reported as killed in action. In 1922, Dorothy was sent a notice that her husband’s body had been interred at the Adelaide British Cemetery at Villers Bretonneux in France. Dorothy received the memorial plaque and scroll as well as Paul’s Victory Medal and British War Medal.

Pitt joined in April 1916 and was part of the 18th Reinforcements of the 12th Battalion. He mentions his trade as a miner and that he had been in the navy previously. He was first sent to Egypt and spent time in the 4th Auxiliary Hospital with measles. On release sent to the Australian training camp at Tel El Kebir. By late 1916 they headed to England and then in the field in France.  Pitt was killed in action on 6 October 1917 in Belgium, probably at the Battle of Broodseinde. In his will, he made his brother Claude the executor and bequeathed all his property and moneys to his sister Emma Pearl Joseph. Pitt’s father, William, received the Memorial Plaque and Scroll as well as the Victory Medal.

The third brother who went to war was Erle but luckily, he survived and returned home. He was also with the 12th Battalion but joined in January 1915. Whilst at Gallipoli he received a gun shot wound to his right leg, leading to a stay in hospital. In April 1916, he had bronchitis, another stay in hospital. In August 1916 while in action in France he received a gun shot would to the thigh. Then finally in May 1918 he was again wounded to his left knee and right thigh. He was sent back to England for treatment on his gun shot wound to his left leg including a fractured femur. In late November 1918, Erle returned to Australia on the Suevic, the only one of three sons to do so. Erle was awarded the Victory Medal, the 1914-1918 Star and the British War Medal. In 1966, when living in Lindisfarne, Erle also applied for the Gallipoli Medal. I am unsure if he received this or not.

In 1919, Erle applied for land as part of the returned soldiers settlement and was granted 823 acres at Wykeholme, Carlton.

In 1921, William Morris Joseph wrote to the appropriate department about the issuing of a war gratuity. In his letter he explained his daughter was bequeathed everything under Pitt’s will but he and his wife have been looking after their grandchildren on their property for four years as well as a wife of another son who died in the war (Paul) for two years. They didn’t charge her board or food, and Paul’s wife used her money to clothe her children. Eventually William received just over 86 pound as a war gratuity.

Erle and his two older brothers, Frank and Claude,  were often mentioned in advertising in the newspapers especially warning people about hunting on their properties.

In January 1945, Emma Amelia Joseph died at her son-in-laws residence at Middleton, aged 86. Two months later Erle’s uncle James, who lived at Rosetta, died in a boating accident at Carlton River sandbar. A year later in 1946, Erle’s father also died at Middleton aged 92. In 1954 Erle lost another member of his family, his brother Frank, by accident on the farm.

Erle Joseph married Hazel Cadger and had six children. One daughter being Martin Lovell’s mother June Joseph who married Harold Lovell. Harold worked the farm with Erle for a number of years. Information from Martin:

We lived in Erle Street, Carlton. Erle & Hazel lived on the Marshdale property in the early days and raised their family there. They also bought a house in Lindisfarne on the Esplanade later in life. My dad Harold & Erle worked the Marshdale property for quite sometime. As a child I was living the dream.

The family were very well known in Carlton and had streets named after them : Josephs Road and Erle Street.

In 1973, the property Marshdale was sold at auction.

 

In 1990 at age 99, Erle went back to Gallipoli with a group of veterans, war widows and junior legatees as guests of the Australian Government. Erle is in the front row, second from the right.

 

Erle celebrated his 100th birthday in style with messages from the Queen and Bob Hawke the Prime Minister at the time sent Barry Jones down to visit with Erle. Both Bob and Barry were personal friends of Erle.

Erle’s wife Hazel was cremated in May 1990 and Erle joined her in July 1991.

Many thanks to Martin Lovell, grandson of Erle for many of the images and information for this post. Newspaper cuttings were snipped from Trove digitized newspapers and  the resettlement paper was from Libraries Tasmania. Information about war happenings were found in the service records for each man, found at the National Archives of Australia.

Readers: Did you know any of the Joseph family? What memories do you have of them?

 

Blog prompts for 2021

geralt / Pixabay

As part of the one place study, they are suggesting blogging prompts for each month next year. I thought I would get in early and start planning some possible posts or one of my readers from the Sorell municipality might like to write one as well.

Here are the prompts:

  • January – Landmarks
  • February – Tragedies
  • March – Women
  • April – Pubs and other drinking establishments
  • May – Worship
  • June – Maps

Landmarks I thought could include the mills that were here in the early 1800s.

Tragedies maybe Matthew Brady and the bushranging gang.

Women might be about Hilda Bridges, born in Sorell.

Lots of choices for pubs in Sorell as well as lots of churches.

Maps might include the early land grants map compared to modern day SOrell municipality.

Readers: Do you have any other ideas for posts I could write? There can be more than one post per month and would be great if other community members could write some as well. Leave a comment here on suggestions for posts I could write. If you want to write a post, leave a comment for that as well.

Shell lime needed

What is shell lime and why would the government be needing this in December 1820?  Was this shell lime to be used in building the new school house? How much is 400 bushels in modern terms?

Oyster shells were very good to create lime. The area around Pittwater was very suited to this as many aboriginal middens were located there and the bay was very shallow near the shore so convict workers could be sent out in the water to collect other shells suitable for lime making. But this could be dangerous as noted in this newspaper article of 1842.  According to Peter MacFie’s research, in the late 1830s, Henry Cooper had lime kilns on his property and it is supposed to be near Pitt Water. Could these be at the end of Shark Point Road? Or could they be the lime kilns mentioned in this advertisement of 1829 by Robert Garrett, a surgeon at Sorell.

Lime kiln on Norfolk Island. Built in 1845.

The steps to create usable lime:

  1. Collect shells and put in lime kiln
  2. Heat and burn the shells
  3. Slake the lime with water

Many of the kilns were inverted bell types shown in photo from Norfolk Island. This is the same as the one at Port Arthur. But the very earliest ways to make lime was to build up a pile of wood, put shells on top and burn quickly to collect the lime.

I put a question to the Sorell Historical Society Facebook page asking about buildings in the district with shell lime in the mortar and where might the earliest lime kilns in the district be. I then visited a few of these places to take some photos.

Horsecroft farm

Shell lime used as a whitewash on the old barn built in 1826 with convict labour. Originally owned by Captain William Henry Glover, an officer in the 31st Regiment of Foot, who had been appointed Police Magistrate of the Sorell District. Talking to the present day owners, there is also a lime kiln on the property at the top of the hill.

 

Lime was used in mortars and plaster in early colonial buildings. When mixed with sand, it produced a type of cement. In brick buildings, walls were often covered with a lime plaster and outside fences and walls were whitewashed with a lime solution. But for agricultural purposes, it could be mixed with clayey soil to improve the texture for crops.

Readers: Do you have any shell lime used as mortar or whitewash on your property? If you live locally, you might be able to send me a photo to include in this post. My email is on the sidebar of this blog.

Tenders called

As this blog is now part of the world wide One Place Studies, I thought I would join in their #oneplaceWednesday activity.  Every Wednesday I will write a post relating to something found in the newspapers on Trove. I will try to make it close to the date 200 years ago.

2 December 1820 and posted on 9 Dec 1820 in the Hobart Town Gazette and Southern Reporter

The area now known as Sorell was once called the District of Pitt Water.

When teaching at Sorell School, we told the students the school was opened in 1821. According to this article in the newspaper, tenders were being called for erecting a school house or perhaps a place of confinement or maybe both. Looks like they had very little time to contact Major Bell, the acting engineer, to say they would be interested in getting the tender. I wonder how much red tape they had 200 years ago compared to today?

Sorell to Bellerive Railway

The Sorell to Bellerive Railway operated between May 1892-June 1926 but before it started there were a lot of arguments about building it. People thought it was unnecessary and too expensive they also thought the ground was either too soft, too stony or too hilly and bridges needed to be built.

The railway was as long as 22km but needed a tunnel, a causeway and a bridge before the railway was finished. This made the railway quite expensive at the time (37,800 pounds). The railway was built by nine men and one boy each day! (there were no women building the railway)

 

Construction

The Public Works Department was responsible for building of the railways. When built they were handed over to the Tasmanian Government Railways.
When constructing the line six major tasks were involved:

  1. Bellerive Railway pier with its causeway (100 metres) and a wharf (80 metres)
  2. Mornington Bridge the tunnel (164 metres)
  3. Pittwater Crossing with its causeway (256 metres) and viaduct (582 metres)
  4. Shark Point Cutting (400 metres)

When Tasmanian Government Railways compared construction costs of different lines Sorell came in as one of the most expensive.
Documents listing 261 items were ready in July and in the late 1889 the tenders were called for the construction of the line. R.C. Patterson was the tender chosen out of the ten.
Rails were ordered from England; they were produced in Middlesbrough and stamped “ 1888 STEEL T.G.R-SL” (Tasmanian Government Railways- Sorell Line) These rails and fastenings were already there waiting for the contractor.
By 1889 expenditure had been:

Rails £7,465
Sleepers £1,125
Compensation for land £1,306
Sundries £22
Plans supervisions and office charges and party cost of survey £862
TOTAL £10,780

In February 1891 an extra 70 tons of rails were brought from the Zeehan stock. In the same month the inspector requested a tricycle presumably to travel the track.
In February 1892 Seabrooks listed their work force in the preceding three weeks:

DATE: LOCATION MEN BOYS
January 11-16 Bellerive 8 men 1 boy
Sorell 9 men
January 18-23 Bellerive 7 men 1 boy
Cambridge 5 men
Sorell 9 men 1 boy
January 25-30 Bellerive 7 men
Cambridge 5 men
Sorell 8 men 1 boy

In February, March and April Inspector TF Rigby complained of poor materials and poor workmanship. Mr Seabrook’s reply in his defence he pointed out that the materials had been inspected and approved by the authorities.
On the 23rd of April 1890 Lady Hamilton the Governor’s wife turned the first sod (the first shovel of dirt to start construction) at Sorell.
A locomotive was moved from the Hobart Railway Station to Bellerive on Wednesday for the Sorell Line. The engine weighed about 12 tons and was placed minus the wheels on a substantial wagon prepared for the occasion and drawn by nine horses to the PS Kangaroo Wharf.

Image from collection at Station Lane Antiques

THE FIRST TRIP
The railway was opened on Monday May 2, 1892. There were two trains running every day leaving Bellerive at 10am and 5.30pm and left Sorell at 7.50am and 3.20pm. All trains stopped at Cambridge and the journey was timed to take one hour.
Very few people took advantage of the first trip. On the 10am trip that left from Bellerive Mr Back, Mr McCormick and Mr Lamb made an inspection of the line and were very satisfied with the result. All the track needed now was the traffic to keep it going.
There was a banquet for 35 people put on at the at the Pembroke Hotel after many photographs had been taken.

When the railway was first built there was no tunnel in the hill now called tunnel hill after Cambridge so the train had to travel up the hill and it was very slow on the way up and the children used to jump off the train and race it up to the top.

BELLERIVE TO SORELL
The train left Bellerive at 10am and made its way to Cambridge. After crossing the north western part of Pittwater the train would stop at Shark Point as this was a very popular picnic spot. On some trips many people would get off the train to spend the day’s picnicking and fishing before catching the train back to Bellerive. At Shark Point two major constructions had to be done to allow the railway to proceed to Sorell.

A stone causeway was built to link Cambridge end with the Sorell end.
Then a timber viaduct with 20 metre pilings was built to connect the causeway to Shark Point.

Deep cuttings were necessary at Shark Point in “extremely tough rock”.  A cottage was erected at Shark Point in 1893. From Shark Point the railway travelled across two of the major properties of the district. These were: Flexmore and Frogmore. In 1896 a short siding was built at Frogmore and by 1920 this was known as Penna, and a goods shed was built here. At Coopers Crossing, a small shelter shed and platform were provided in 1920-1921.

At Shark Point the train was signalled across the bridge as people used to fish from it.
Red flag-Stop
Green flag-slacken
White flag- clear.

CAMBRIDGE
After another crossing over the Cambridge road near an inn called the Three Trunks Inn, an impressive and still standing two metre high stone faced tunnel was built. Another level crossing was then built east of the train station then, they then wound up with two level crossings down to Cambridge on the south side of the Barilla Rivulet.

At Cambridge they had three tracks. A railway cottage, cart dock and a small stable was later built. At the Cambridge office there was a ticket booth with a waiting room and fireplace. The post office, ladies toilets and male toilets where located out the back.

View of railway station and overlooking Sorell township from AA Rollings collection, Libraries Tasmania NS1553-1-598

SORELL
When arriving at Sorell, travellers alighted at the station which is now a private home and used as an antiques store. They found Sorell was a substantial town with a council, two hotels, three churches and five stores. There was plenty to do before catching the train back.The train used to carry grain,chaff,wood, wool and cream from Hanslow’s. This was loaded at Johnson’s crossing which was half way between Bellerive and Sorell, just out of Cambridge. The cream was reputed to be the best in the district.

The people used to drive their produce to the train for carting to Bellerive.  Most of the wool, chaff, wood, etc came to Cambridge from Acton.

Researched by Scott R using book about the railway published by the Bellerive Historical Society in 2005.

Early properties

Pezibear / Pixabay

By 1806 the first farms were under cultivation in Gloucester as Sorell district was then known. Early land grants were given in 1812 to the following:

Robert Alloms or Allomes Charles Anthony William Baxter Jacob Billett or Bellette
John or James Birchall Richard Buckingham James Davies Frederick Dawes
J. Duncombe William Fenner Arnold Fisk Mary Fogarty
Silas Gatehouse James Grimes William Hambly James Hannaway
Jane Hobbs William Hopley Jane Horton (Gill), A.W.H.Humphrey
John Ingle Charles Jeffries Thomas Kent John Knox
Alexander Laing I. Larsome John Liddle David Lord
Edward Lord R. W. Loane William McDowall John Miles
George Morrisby Robert Nash Thomas Pennington J. Prestage
Bartholomew Reardon Walter Redpath Mary Richardson Thomas Riley
S. Sederick James Turnbull John Wade M. Wicks
Charles Willis J. Wilson William Wilson W. Wood
Thomas Richardson Thomas Solly?

Sorell was a big farming community.  They transported crops and vegetables to neighbouring parishes to sell at markets. There were two wind mills called Nash windmill and Downwards windmill. Farming was an important part of Sorell history and the main thing that Sorell farmed was wheat and most of the wheat was transported to Sydney.

In 1815, so much wheat was being produced that a flour mill was built by Robert Nash.

John Birchall of Marsh Farm, began in 1816 a wheat delivery service from Pittwater to Kangaroo Point on his new schooner ‘Young William‘ at a rate of 1/6 a bushell.

In south, sheep dominated the Bream Creek area around the coastal flats with dairying the preferred industry on the rich basalt soils of the Ragged tier and at Nugent. Dairy properties were generally small family’s properties with produce being sold to the Bream Creek butter factory from 1899. Pigs were also raised at Bream Creek and sold at the Sorell sale yards.

Soldiers WWI

There are a lot of people who have fought and died for their country.
There are a lot of people who honour the people that fought and died for their country.
We are honouring the soldiers who fought for us.

bectownsend / Pixabay

 The soldiers of the Sorell Municipality who fought in World War 1.

Albert Harris Bender
Went to war 02.03.1916
Died 30.03.1918
25th Battalion

Charles Young
Went to war Unknown
Died 11.04.1917
15th Battalion

Clement Robert Young
Went to war Unknown
Died 13.10.1917
40th Battalion

Joseph Allan Young
Went to war Unknown
Died 04.10.1917
40th Battalion

Keith Doctor Hean
Went to war 16.8.1915
Died 19.6.1916
12th Battalion

Samuel Richard Wiggins
Went to war 23.3.1916
Died 5.7.1916
12th Battalion

Joseph Henry Millington
Went to war 21.2.1916
Died 30.1.1917
40th Battalion

Paul Hamilton Joseph
Went to war 29.8.1916
Died 3.5.1918
48th battalion

Morris Pitt Joseph
Went to war 6.4.1916
Died 6.10.1917
12th Battalion

WEAPONS

The ANZAC’s used a lot of guns and bombs as their weapons. The First World War was the start of a revolutionary weapon making time.
Many weapons were made in WW1 such as the Railway rifle which was situated on the back of the train.
Another piece of weaponary that made history would have to be the tank.