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Biographical Dictionary - Coorow, Carnamah, Three Springs


"Jim" James Douglas GOOCH

Born 15 October 1864 in Port Augusta, South Australia [55]
Son of Douglas GOOCH and Mary LOUDEN [55]
He was said to have ridden around Australia on horseback and once worked riding in a buck jumping show [P2]
It was also said that he had once worked for renowned pastoralist Sir Sidney KIDMAN in South Australia [P2]
Station-hand on Wandagee Station on the Minilya River in the Gascoyne region of Western Australia in 1912 [50]
Drover on White Hill Station in Mingenew, Western Australia in 1913 [50]
In 1913 obtained in partnership with brothers Douglas and Malcolm the property Eneabba Springs in what is now Eneabba [8: page 44]
Farmer and Grazier of Eneabba Springs in Eneabba, Western Australia  [7: page 118]
     He and his brother Doug are said to have just about lived on the back of a horse [P2]
     He was a true bushman, being able to comfortably sleep in the bush and live off kangaroo and other bush tucker [P2]
     Did sheep droving and mustering for local farmers, including taking mobs of sheep on horseback from Arrino to Carnamah [P2]
Contributed an Irish Jig to the concert in aid of the Methodist Church in Arrino on 11 September 1914 [9: 18-Sep-1914]
Married "Martha" Sarah Jane FEEHAN in 1918 [66]
Made his wife a huge kangaroo skin rug made from kangaroos he had caught [P2]
His postal address was Three Springs from 1927 to 1943 [6] [24]
As early as 1922 he was the owner of 160 acres surrounding Eneabba Spring (Victoria Location 2572) [44] [3]
     Prior to the formation of the Eneabba district the 160 acre block was rated as a part of Winchester, South Carnamah [3]
In 1922 he was working away from Eneabba as a station-hand on Wanarra Station near Perenjori [50]
His children James and Lily were students at the Dominican Convent School in Three Springs [98]
He was seriously ill and a patient at the hospital in Three Springs during September 1927 [4: 17-Sep-1927]
For a period he held the 160 acre Victoria Location 6661 about 35 miles west of Coorow, which he had forfeited by 1929 [86: 20-Apr-1929]
In December 1929 advertised that he had found a red roan bullock branded I C.W. running with his cattle [4: 7-Dec-1929]
     If it wasn't claimed by the time allowed by law it would be sold to defray expenses, as was common practice [4]
He was a skilled tap-dancer and would willingly travel to Three Springs to tap-dance at a function if requested [P2]
Father of James and Lily [98]
Died 22 May 1943 in Three Springs; buried at the Three Springs General Cemetery (Roman Catholic, Plot 37) [24]
Following his death his 160 acres surrounding Eneabba Spring was sold to Frederick BISHOP of on 13 January 1944 [3]

From The Western Mail newspaper, Thursday 24 June 1943:
Goldfields Pioneer - "Jimmy" Gooch Dead
"Born in Port Augusta, and a relative of the Gooch family, who pioneered a considerable portion of this State, James Douglas Gooch
died recently at the age of 78 at Three Springs on May 22. He leaves his wife, one son who is serving with the RAF, and a daughter, Lily. He made his debut to this State by crossing Australia from east to west by camel, starting from the Blue Mountains in New South Wales. His track was over Port Augusta and Eucla to the newly-discovered Coolgardie goldfields, and then on to the Laverton-Burtville-Cosmo Newberry country. Besides seeking gold, "Jimmy" Gooch spent a lot of time in the northern sheep and cattle country among his mates being "Billy" Frost, "Jim" Tregurtha, McAuliffe, Bowman, Carlsen, Kirby and Brown, Dr Laver, Lawler and Cue. For many years James Douglas Gooch was a champion horseman and noted colt-breaker, ranking among such noteworthy characters as Harry Farber, "Snowy" Thompson and Jim Jones. The funeral took place at Three Springs, where he was a well-known figure."

Reference:  Carnamah Historical Society & Museum and North Midlands Project, 'James Douglas Gooch' in Biographical Dictionary of Coorow, Carnamah and Three Springs, retrieved 9 August 2022 from [reference list]

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