At the core of any economic system is the transfer of goods and availability of labour. Our ancestors played their part in developing colonial Australia where great distances and difficult terrain limited apparent boundless opportunities. Duthie, Whitfield and Montgomery ancestors sailed and piloted ships which carried goods to Australia and in the coastal trade. Some constructed vessels in Newcastle and Port Melbourne and several ran vehicular ferries on major rivers. In the vital railway industry, Childs, Rumble, Adam, Boyd, Adams, Whitfield, Campbell and Scrivener men laid the iron rails, drove the locomotives, were engineers in railway workshops, carriage builders, guards, signallers, station masters and worked in the Enfield and Darling Harbour goods yards as well as locomotive construction (such as 3801) at Everleigh in Sydney. The McCallums built the drays and other horse drawn vehicles that connected people with the railways and ports. Campbells and McAllisters were carriers in the horse drawn transport era in Queensland and northern NSW. Men of the McCallum, Scrivener and Campbell families, shod horses and manufactured goods and vital components for vehicles. All contributed to the national as well as their local economies.
Jane and Margaret, two sisters of William Whitfield drowned in the Derwent River at Workington, England in 1854 and 1856. John Rumble, working on constructing the new railway line between Liverpool and Campbelltown, died in an horrific accident in 1858. A railway worker failed to signal an approaching train. Two trucks were derailed and with a load of sleepers, John fell to his death. Mary Ann Adams (nee McIntyre) fell into the kitchen fire while boiling water for tea at her Cambewarra home in 1870. Her son John Adams was killed when a winch handle struck his head after a CSR barge fouled the line of the ferry he was operating on the Richmond River near the Broadwater Mill. Other accidents were prolific and even serious but not fatal.
Ancestors & Descendants of Edward Childs & Catherine Rumble
First published as ‘From Newtownards to Newtown’ in 1996 Second edition 2007
ISBN 0 9578 150 34
Escaping the poverty of rural England, the Rumble family left Clavering, Essex and took up the opportunities offered by the construction of railways in NSW in the 1850s, as did Hugh and Edward Childs from Newtownards, County Down in Ulster, Ireland. Hugh Childs’ son, Edward, drove locomotives on the western and southern lines from 1872 until 1911 and the same industry provided secure employment for some of his descendants when rail travel was the primary form of transportation .