We are descended on my
mother's side (she is now 89.) from one Edmund John Murray(my great-great
grandfather). He was born Edmund John Murray on Jan 1st, 1828 at Lanark,
Lesmahagow, Springbank, Scotland He had a brother who was baptized as
Charles Behems Murray, born the second son of John Edmund Murray and his
wife, Margaret Maxwell, nee Hamilton, on July 16th,1829at Lanark,
Avondale, Scotland. This following interesting story about this
great-great uncle has come to us through research done by my mother's
cousin, Charles Martin, who is now deceased.
After emigrating to Australia,
circa 1850, Charles became second assistant overseer to John Stuart
Hepburn, founder of Smeaton Hill, now known as Hepburn Springs, Victoria,
Australia. He was jocularly known as "Barie", as he claimed that he was
entitled to return to Scotland to claim a baronetcy., but he did not,
because he 'enjoyed the colonial life too much.'
Mum's cousin added that he did
not think that this claim could be true, as Charles Murray was younger
than his brother, my great-great grandfather Edmund. However, there had
been a title in the family. Their grandfather had been Sir Charles Murray
who was a local magistrate and whisky distiller and reputedly living in a
house called 'Arden Lea' at Peebles.
My mother said that Charles
and Edmund Murray were remittance men which means, as I understand it that
they were paid an allowance from their family in Scotland to live in
another country. Charles married the eldest daughter of John Hepburn,
against her family's wishes and they had one daughter Marion. Her mother,
Alice died at age 34, so Alice's brother George dismissed Charles who
eventually came to the small township of Somerville where his brother
Edmund was, lived there until he died at age 70 and is buried in Frankston
Cemetry. The Hepburn Family kept Marion, who later married a Charles
Morton and had five children.
Curiously, the only
descendants of the Hepburns are from this family as any children of other
members of the family did not survive, and the last four children of the
original Hepburns, all girls, including twins,
were taken back to England when their father died and they married there.
Charles was not a very
reliable character and it is said he often retired in a huff to his
property at Tea Tree Hill behind Kangaroo Hills which was not far away
from Hepburn Springs.
My great-great grandfather
married and sired thirteen children. His son, Charles married Elizabeth
Grant, another Scottish family who were among the pioneering families at
Somerville. I am intending to document as much oral history and family
memory as my mother can recall. She has a phenomenal memory, is still as
sharp as a tack, living alone and looking after herself. She is very
interested in the Family history, so I am very keen to do further
research. We are interested in going further back into our family's
history in Scotland, particularly to find out more about the background
our Murray ancestors came from.
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