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Sunday, June 10, 2012 10:44:52 AM

 

I was born and raised in this area and I am still here.

Hurstville Council     St George League's Club Football Team (Not my team however)

St George & Sutherland Shire Leader Newspaper

 1911 - Forest Rd

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The first European to set foot in the St George region was said to be Captain James Cook in the late eighteenth century. Up till then the Aborigines were the only inhabitants in the vast bush land, sprinkled with mangrove swamps along the Georges River and an abundance of forests and rugged terrain.

It has wonderful history and graphics which mentions some of the people who are mentioned in my St George history.

Click here for has some history of Kingsgrove and Kingsgrove North High School.

Hannah Laycock arrived here in NSW a free settler in 1791. Her husband was Thomas Laycock a Quartermaster in the NSW Corps.. Her 500 acres went from south of the Cook's River to Stoney Creek Road, up the William St Earlwood and the Bexley Road from Kingsgrove Road. She died in 1831 at the age of  73 and was buried at what is now known as Central Railway, at the Devonshire Cemetery and when the new Central Railway was established her remains were then moved to Botany and around 1900. The  family names are used in some local Streets today.  Laycock Street in Bexley North and Penshurst also.

Governor King was the the present governor of the Colony and hence the name Kingsgrove.

The first settlers to the the St George area was in 1888 when land grants were issued and farmers and timber-getters came to the district, known then as Lord's Forest. Then Gannon's Forest then the name Hurstville was in 1876 when the school inspector suggested it for the proposed public school. The name was officially recognised in 1881.

The Townson brothers were 2 very important men to the development in our area. Captain John an officer in NSW Corps carried to NSW a letter of entitlement to take up land on arrival here. Captain Bligh had other ideas. He would not make good the instructions of the letter and allowed him use of land only. Townson politely refused and wanted no part of this wanting to be under no way obliged to Bligh.

Funny though or such a remarkable coincidence he took the land after Bligh was captured in the Rum Rebellion in 1808. The area stetted to the south of Hannah's Layback's farm. This large piece of property went from Tanner Avenue to Preddy's Road Stoney Creek Road far as King Georges Road.

In 1810 Captain Townson received 2 grants of land. One was 1950 acres which included Hurstville , Allawah & Carlton. Up until that time the Aborigines lived in this area. The Aborigines fished the magnificent waterways that surround the district.

The second piece was 5 acres in Kogarah Bay. He lived for a while on the foreshores of Kogarah Bay. Governor Macquarie was rowed to Captain Townson place because the roads were so bad. Captain Townson  took very little interest in doing anything good with it and sold to it Lord Simeon 800 acres in 1812.

Dr Robert Townson, a noble and well educated gentleman was a scientist and a classical scholar arrived in1807 with a similar letter for land and was treated as his brother. Having being made a similar offer he in turn refused any part of that arrangement. Eventually he was given 1605 acres south west of his brother 's rural area and then at a later date received 75 acres around Blakehurst which included Tom Ugly's Point.

Tom Ugly was actually Tom Huxley. The local Aborigines found this too hard to pronounced so this name came from that fact. It punt commenced to function in 1879 when it was so small that passengers were forced to wind themselves across this spot  and it only ever took 4 vehicles at a time. The punt was used till 1929 when the bridge that stills stands there today was completed.

Some of this land became very apparent that it was going to be totally unsuitable to raise sheep and he did land swap for more suitable terrain at Minto south west of Sydney. John Connell purchased some of this land in 1830, so then we have Connell's Bush now Connell's Point.

James Oatley arrived on the 7th January 1815 to the NSW colony as a convict.  He died 1839.  His headstone was found in 1925 at Beverly Hills and is at present held in the collection of the Hurstville Historical Society. He was a renowned watchmaker and clockmaker in Warwickshire England. Francis Greenway was in charge of building the prisoner's barracks  and he was asked to make the clock for the building. We know this building as Hyde Park Barracks.