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Biographical Dictionary - Coorow, Carnamah, Three Springs


Surname

George John Thomas BATTERSBY

Born 23 July 1863 in Millbrook, South Australia [30] [55]
Son of Thomas BATTERSBY and Jane ABBOTT [55]
Married Annie Mary HUTCHINS on 9 September 1889 in Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia [P335]
In Victoria their daughter Olive Jane was born on 21 June 1891 at Omeo, and died on 4 April 1892 in Cassilis [P335]
Shifted to Western Australia where he worked as a Miner in Boulder, Mount Magnet and Cue [P335]
Farmer of Wattle Vale Farm in Coorow, Western Australia 1908-1928 [P335] [19]
     His farm was 731 acres of size and consisted of three Conditional Purchase blocks in Victoria Locations 3207, 3831 and 3577 [44]
     Also part of the farm was the 160 acre Victoria Location 3456, which was owned by his son Edwin [44]
     During the 1920s also owned the 43 acre Victoria Location 5655 (by 1932 it was owned by Mrs Blanche A. BOTHE) [3] [44]
     Although he had his farmland from 1908 he appears to have also worked as a Railway Fettler in Coorow 1908-1911 [44]
Foundation Treasurer and Committee Member of the Coorow Farmers' Progress Association in 1911 [39: 4-Aug-1911]
Guaranteed to contribute to the teacher's salary if the attendance fell below ten at the proposed Coorow State School in 1911 [215]
     Temporarily provided a bush shed on his farm for the Coorow State School when it opened in February 1912 [215]
     He also signed another guarantee that if the attendance fell below ten students he would contribute to the teacher's salary [215]
     Both were on the understanding that it was a temporary measure until a proper school was built in Coorow [215]
     The Education Department failed to deliver on its promise to build a school and as a result the attendance at the school dropped [215]
     He wrote to the Department on 2 October 1915 explaining that he had only signed the guarantee on the basis of their promise [215]
     He withdrew his name from the guarantee and gave them notice his bush shed would only be available until 15 October 1912 [215]
     After having no home for six weeks the school moved to a room at Coorow House before closing a few months later [215]
     Through the persistent efforts of his wife the school later reopened and in 1922 a proper school building was erected [215]
After harvesting his crop he delivered 200 bags of wheat to the railway siding in Coorow during November 1912 [9: 29-Nov-1912]
His horse Winchester won the Hack Race at the Picnic Races held in Carnamah in aid of the Belgian Fund on 24 June 1915 [39: 7-Jul-1915]
Enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force in Geraldton on 11 April 1916 and allocated regimental number 2835 [30: item 3057589]
     On enlistment gave his address as Coorow and his profession as Miner (presumably from his years before going to Coorow) [30]
     Recorded as 5 feet 6½ inches tall, weighing 140 lbs., with light brown eyes, dark brown hair, a medium complexion [30]
     After training he was appointed as a Private in the 6th Reinforcement of the Australian Imperial Force's 5th Pioneer Battalion [30]
     Embarked from Fremantle, Western Australia for active service abroad on the A28 Port Melbourne on 30 October 1916 [30]
     Disembarked from Port Melbourne in Devonport, England on 28 December 1916 for further military training [30]
     Embarked Devonport, England on the Miltiades and disembarked in Fremantle, Western Australia on 22 June 1917 [30]
     Due to having chronic bronchitis was discharged from the A.I.F. on 24 July 1917; received the British War Medal [30]
     From 5 July 1917 onwards he received a fortnightly pension of 30/- and his wife one of 15/- [30]
Following his discharge from the Australian Imperial Force he returned to Coorow [19]
Purchased with Sydney MUSTO 701 acres of virgin land in Coorow from the Midland Railway Company on 26 September 1918 [27]
     The 701 acres was Lot M1121 of Victoria Location 2023 and cost £263/2/7 (7/6 per acre), payable by instalments over 15 years [27]
     They held the 701 acres in partnership as "Battersby & Musto" until abandoning the block during the 1921-22 financial year [44]
     The 701 acre Lot M1121 was re-sold to Alexander GRANT in July 1922, and he sold it onto Daisy FARLEY in June 1925 [27]
At the first wool sale of the season on Friday 4 November 1921 he sold one bale of wool for 15¼d. per pound [10: 11-Nov-1921]
B4A was his registered horse and cattle firebrand in 1924 [80: 28-Oct-1925]
Sold three young farm horses in July 1925 through Westralian Farmers [39: 24-Jul-1925]
In September 1925 sold through Elder Smith & Co in the Perth suburb of Subiaco, three good dairy cows with calves [39: 5-Sep-1925]
Prior to his death he is said to have left his farm in Coorow and settled with his son Thomas on a farm in Marchagee [P335]
Resided in the Coorow district until his death in 1930 [2]
Father of Edwin, Olive Jane, George and Thomas [P335]
Died 6 February 1930; buried Karrakatta Cemetery, Perth WA (Anglican, OA, 211) [2]
By the end of the 1931-32 financial year his son George was the owner of his 731 acres and an additional 3,115 acres in Coorow [3]


From The Daily News newspaper, Tuesday 3 September 1912:
The Coming Harvest
"The Agricultural Commissioner for the wheat belt has received two splendid samples of wheat crops grown by Messrs. G.J. Battersby and Sons, Wattle Grove Farm, Coorow, representing Alpha and Federation varieties. The Alpha is 4 ft. 8 in. high and the Federation 4 ft. high. The seed was sown in March and Messrs Battersby state the samples are representative of one hundred acres of each variety on their farm. The Alpha is ripening and shows promise of a heavy yield, while the Federation is also likely to give an exceptionally good return. Messrs. William Sandover and Co. have kindly consented to exhibit these samples in their window."


Reference:  Carnamah Historical Society & Museum and North Midlands Project, 'George John Thomas Battersby' in Biographical Dictionary of Coorow, Carnamah and Three Springs, retrieved 18 August 2019 from www.carnamah.com.au  [ sources ]




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