Taken from
Issue Number 55 Spring 2004


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Elizabeth Marrison

'There are seven milestones in Southend Parish with the words "10 miles from Campbeltown" on them,' stated my father in spring of 2002, so I decided I would go and search them out.

1. Kilmashenachan. I have been aware of this milestone all my life as it sits at the top of the road leading to Kilmashenachan Farm, where I was brought up. I would sit on that milestone most mornings waiting for the school minibus, driven by the late 'Teenie' McMillan, to collect me as it went around the 'hill', eventually dropping us off at the Mill Turn, whence the 'big' bus would then take us to Campbeltown Grammar School.

The field behind the milestone was poorly drained and covered in rashes up until the 1950s, when the late Willie McShannon drained it. The rashes were cut each year to thatch the stacks. My father told me he ploughed the field in 1943 with horses and found a few very deep and very old drains there. Originally this field belonged to Blasthill but when the present entrance was made to Kilmashenachan around 1870, the fields were redistributed and it became part of Kilbride Croft.

The present Kilbride was built in 1878, the original one having been situated a few yards up from the milestone, across from the old limestone quarry, where the original farm road to Kilmashenachan once joined the public road. The last tenant in the old house of Kilbride was an Irishman called Patrick O'Neal. The late Archibald McEachran of Kilblaan maintained that Kilbride was a modern name, of 1840, the old name being Aucharainne - 'the field of the fern or bracken' - and that it had been given the 'saintly' name of Kilbride as the Laird, MacDonald of Ballyshear, wanted to discourage the local farmers from carting limestone from, the quarry. However, the late John McKay said there had previously been a chapel and graveyard which the quarry had ruined and so the Laird had closed it. Two young children of the tenant in nearby Knockmorran Farm, Ronald McMillan, were buried here.

My father, Alex Ronald, painted this milestone recently and it is looking smart. It was removed during the last War in case of invasion, as were all the others, but it was replaced on the top side of the road, not the bottom where it was originally situated.

2. Learside. This stone is situated about 300 yards up from the junction at Polliwilline. The road that now runs from Macharioch to Polliwilline is still called the 'new' road by some of the older farmers in the district, namely, Andrew Galbraith, late of Langholm, and my father. The late Hugh Reid of Chiskan had always called it such, he having known the old road. This 'new' road was built around 1850-53 by the Duke of Argyll, but it was to be maintained at the expense of the Kintyre Roads Trustees. The 'old' road, which was to be closed, ran half-way between the present road and the coast, from Macharioch to Polliwilline and then up and over the hill, crossing over the present road where the old cattle grid once was. The next part, now hidden by forestry, continued towards Campbeltown, joining the present road at Glenramskill. A few of us walked it in the mid-1970s, trying to keep to the line as near as possible, but with the forestry being newly planted it was difficult and we lost it occasionally.

3. Eden. Jane and Dan McCorkindale found this stone in the ditch recently. It had been missing for a few years, probably being knocked out of place by the roadmen and their machinery. It was originally situated half-way between Eden farmhouse and their cottage and they plan to paint and re-erect it outside their home.

In the hill above, there was once a small but deep dam which supplied water to a waterwheel at the farm below and this ran the threshing mill. It was used up to the 1920s - possibly the '30s - but now the waterwheel has gone and only a trace of the dam, the sluice and part of the wall can be seen. Dan tells me there were two deaths at the dam. The son and a workman of the tenant (Smyllies were tenants from 1840 to 1900) drowned while taking a swim. There are also the remains of an old road or cart-track, with built-up sides, up behind the hill, and perhaps it joined with the old road on the Learside.

It has been recorded that there was once a road from Oalmore to the shipping place at Polliwilline, and in 1837 it was written: ' ... in the understanding that when this road shall be executed, the Duke of Argyll shall have in his power to close or keep open the present Kildavie Road'. Perhaps the old track above Eden was once part of this road. The stone quarry between the two cottages at Eden was used for bottoming out the Mill road at the turn of the last century.

The only named field at Eden is the one on the top side of the road, opposite the farm and running down to the wood, and it is called Auchanrathaid, 'Field of the Road'.

4. Dunaverty. The 10th milestone here sits in an area known locally as the Garraidh Dubh, meaning 'Black Dyke', and is opposite the gate leading to Dunaverty beach, where the farmers and villagers once travelled through to collect seaware for their fields and gardens. In Easter of 2002, my Father, Mary Muir and I went looking for it, uncovered it from the overgrown vegetation and cleaned it up. James Barbour, at Machribeg Farm, tells me the field behind the stone is called the Garraidh Dubh and the field opposite is the 'Wee' Garraidh Dubh. In this field, near the laundry block of the caravan park, the green of the second hole of Dunaverty Golf Course was positioned for a short time before the Second World War. All the land below the road was once MachriecastIe, one of the three divisions that now make up Machribeg. The road originally ended at Machrimore Ferry and it was decided, at a meeting in 1799, following a New Road Act, to include the part along to Keil Rocks. In 1800, 'having also under consideration the Statute labour imposed upon the tenants & cottars by the New Act, they report it as their opinion that in the mean time a tenant paying £6 Stg and upwards and having no cart, ought to pay 4/- as the conversion of his statute labour and that tenants having carts ought to pay at rate of 4/- for each cart and driver they usually employ after the last Tuesday of next March until otherways recommended by the District'.

5. Gartavaigh. This stone is situated at the small bridge crossing the 'Lone' which flows down from Dalbhraddan and Drumavouline and into Glenbreckerie Water. The sea thousands of years ago flowed right up to Orumavouline and when it receded it left a small loch known locally as the 'Salmon Pocket'. Retired farmer, John Cameron, now living at Strathmore, told me that his father, John, once caught a salmon up the 'Lone'. Dalbhraddan, further up the Lone, means 'the field of the salmon'; apparently the Lone had been known to overflow its banks, leaving salmon stranded on the land.

This road is also a 'new' road. The 'old' road ran up behind Strathmore along the brow of the hill to Gartvaigh and the remains of it can still be seen with a stone wall along the low side. Below this road, immediately across from the milestone, was until recently an old well known as 'Bruacheallan Well' containing lovely, sweet, ice-cold water. The old road was in a very bad state of repair and was then a statute labour road, meaning the tenants and cottars had to give two days' labour a year to maintain it; but in 1853 the tenants and proprietor approached the Kintyre District Roads Trustees offering to build a new road themselves at their own expense provided that the Trust would undertake to maintain it at the public expense. They were anxious that a road be built between Keil Cemetery and DrumavouIIine to connect up with the two public roads. By 1856 they had it built and the old tracks were closed off to the public, but I expect coffins of some of the older people were still carried along it to the burying ground at Keil as it is still known locally as the 'road they carried the coffins along'.

6. Lephenstrath. This milestone is situated just past the bridge. In the mid-nineteenth century, Malcolm McShannon had an inn and grocer's shop at Lephenstrath Bridge. The McKerrals, before moving to Gartvain Cottage, were the last to operate a shop there. The late Peggy Harvey told me that on the top side of the bridge there were once five houses, later reduced to two houses of two rooms and a toilet. One was for the chauffeur, the other for Charlie Hamilton.

Across the road from them was originally one large house, but after renovations in 1934 it was altered to living accommodation above with a hall below, in which the neighbourhood folk would gather to play bowls. Off the hall, there was a small room which was used for playing cards, dominoes and listening to the wireless and record-player, and doubled as a library. Once a month, the late Rev Angus MacVicar would hold a church service there and Sunday school was held every Sunday afternoon with Rona or Jock MacVicar cycling over from Southend to take it.

7. Carrine. Now missing, this milestone was originally on the small brae before North Carrine and was exactly 10 miles from Campbeltown, in both directions. In 1907, the duty of a road surfaceman 'in charge of a length of road is to keep it at all times free from stones and mud, to attend to the drainage and to keep the footpaths clean and smooth'. Along the road, a short distance from this milestone, at Creggan, lived the Harveys. Alex Harvey told me his grandfather, Sandy, was a roadman. He had three horses and iron-clad carts, and, employing a few men, he would collect cobble stones from the Glenbreckerie River, cart them to the nearby magazine and there they would break the stones up, i.e. stone-knapping, to use to repair the roads.

Alex's father, Dan, was employed by the Council for 22 years looking after all the roads in Southend. In the winter he would repair the sides of the roads, fill the potholes and clear the ditches, and I can remember him in the summer with his scythe, cutting the roadsides. He retired in 1971, aged 70, but if there was a period of heavy rain, he would go out and clear the cundies.

Finally, there was an extra milestone, reading '11 miles from Camp'town', with an arrow pointing west, and '10 miles 3 fur 62 yds from Camp'town', with an arrow pointing east, situated below the ruins of Keil School. I could find no record of it, but I suspect it was placed there by James Nicol Fleming, who bought Keil Estate in 1865. In 1873, at the same time as he was building his mansion house at Keil, he was permitted to re-align the road, which originally ran around the back of the cemetery, to its present line along the front. This was done at his own expense and the Kintyre District Roads Trustees took over the maintenance of the road three years later, as agreed. The old road was broken up and the stones were used towards the building of his house.

The first milestones in Britain since the Romans placed them along Trumpington Road, were erected in Cambridge in 1725, but it was not until 1776, as our Editor wrote in Mag. No. 51, that the Kintyre District Roads Trustees first decided that milestones should be 'fixed upon the great lines in this district as finished and beginning at the Cross of Campbeltown and to proceed to Inverneill.' George Langlands, the Land Surveyor, was employed in 1779 to measure the roads from Campbeltown to Rhunahaorine. It was after the main road from Campbeltown to Inveraray had been improved, with bridges built where necessary, that the Surveyors started on the lesser roads and I expect it would have been around the mid-nineteenth century before the above milestones in Southend were erected.

These milestones, erected to inform travellers in days gone by of how far they had come and how far they still had to go, are relics of a time when life moved more slowly. Sadly, many are missing or broken and perhaps Historic Scotland or some such body should try to save them.

Tom Johnston

I 'd like to tell you about a walk I took from Kintyre's Arnicle Farm along a dirt track up the Glen of Barr to the ruin of a drystone farmhouse called Stockdale. The way is hilly, overgrown and littered with hundreds of sheep and, on this particular June morning, more than a little muddy, rainy and windswept. Well, I've been to Scotland a half-dozen times or so and have never yet managed to stay completely dry.

The reason I was walking up the Glen of Barr to that pile of stones is because it's the earliest known residence of my Scots ancestors. My father and I were on a genealogical tour - something that, I understand, has become quite a popular activity in your neck of the woods. I might mention that as I was making the two-hour walk through the rain along a muddy track and dodging sheep, my father, Lorne Johnston, then in his early seventies, was enjoying a hearty breakfast and a second cup of coffee, no fool he. During the walk I had the opportunity, and the time, to think about a few things.

The first was that since the last time I'd done any trekking, I'd gained fifty-odd pounds. The illusion that I'd carried them well was slipping away with every step. The second was on the nature of the walk up Barr Glen. It's a wildish sort of place and there's little doubt but that I was walking in the very footsteps of my great-great, and great-great-great grandparents, people with the surnames of McLean, Milloy, Beaton, Downie and Leitch. They had all lived in and around the Glen, way back, and had all, at one time or another I'm sure, made the trek up it to the old farmhouse. The last time any of those people made the trek was one hundred and seventy years ago. It seems there've been a lot of walkers in the family since then, and your Editor wanted me to tell you about one of them, one of them who was born there in Kintyre and who died here in Canada, but walked a lot of miles in between.

In 1819, in a small, low-ceilinged, stone-walled, thatched cottage that was built on the site Kintyre now knows of as the North Beachmore Restaurant, one Donald McMillan sat down with his wife, Catherine Milloy, and their children, and decided to move to Canada. The couple said goodbye to their friends and family, including Catherine's sister and brother-in-law, my great-great-great grandparents, Flora Milloy and John McLean. Donald and Catherine and their five children then boarded a ship and sailed across the Atlantic. It was quite possibly the worst experience of their lives. Normally such a voyage in those years took four weeks or so. The winds were wrong for this one, though, and they did not reach land for fourteen weeks. A child, a little girl, died en route.

The original intent of Donald, who I am going to start calling Donald 'The Walker', was to settle in the Niagara Falls area. On arrival there, he rented a farm in a place called Wainfleet. But the land was too damp, the crops were bad, and the family suffered ague, which is a type of malarial fever.

Now this was in the years not long after the much forgotten war of 1812, a war in which British troops in Canada held on against the forces of the new American Republic despite having to fight a major conflict with France at the same time. Our Donald met a British veteran of that American campaign in about 1820 who, for nearly five pounds, sold him his veteran's entitlement to one hundred acres of land in an unsettled area about one hundred miles away in a place no one had heard of. It had just been surveyed by another Kintyre man, John Galt, and was to be called Erin. Donald 'The Walker' told his wife about the deal and promptly walked one hundred and thirty miles or so from Wainfleet to Toronto to register his entitlement to the land. When he got there he was told registrations were being held at a later date, so Donald took the long walk back to Wainfleet to look after his family. At the appropriate date, he walked all the way back to Toronto, then called York (or 'Muddy York' by those who didn't like the place) and registered his acreage, sight unseen.

Donald the Walker, disdaining coaches, boats and horses as expensive modes of travel, then up and walked eighty miles from Toronto to his new plot of land in the wilderness. I am told Donald made his own shoes and, what with all the walking, he must have had a lot of experience doing so. Upon arrival at the site, he found that the water was clear and good-tasting, the land well-drained and rich, however still encumbered by trees, and the Mississauga Indians, an Ojibwa tribe which now goes by the name Anishnabeg, were friendly enough in relinquishing their homeland. Donald liked the place and walked back down one hundred and twenty miles to Wainfleet to collect his family.

Shortly thereafter, Donald McMillan felled a large oak tree, cut solid wheels from the wood, knocked together a crude cart from the rough lumber, and hitched up a pair of newly purchased oxen to it. Donald the Walker then piled his wife and the younger children into the cart with what few possessions they had and walked the family back to Erin. The older children, Hugh, Archibald and their brother Daniel, aged from six to ten, were then considered old enough to herd the family's three cows along behind their steadily marching father.

By a stroke of luck, I've found pictures of Hugh and Archibald McMillan. Hugh's was taken at his Erin home in his ninety-second year. As he sat for his picture, looking back at us from his chair inside a real brick house in front of the calendar for August of 1899, I think of him remembering how he got there. Perhaps while wearing a store-bought suit and ready-made boots instead of the patched homespun clothes and rough-made rawhide shoes of his youth, Hugh remembered that long walk when he was just ten years old, down the narrow paths through the dense dark forest, swimming the cows across rivers, but totally secure in the confidence of his father. From the warmth of his chair by the hearth, old Hugh may have often recalled the rough lean-to his father built for them when they arrived in Erin in May of 1822.

The back-breaking, constant labour of a homesteader in the earlier part of the 1800s, chopping trees, towing and piling them for drying, breaking stumps and pulling them out in pieces or sometimes leaving them to rot and ploughing around them, is well-documented elsewhere by people who were there. And, oh, the stones, tons and tons of stones. Catherine and the children would have all helped carry the stones from the dirt to the edge of the field leaving them in piles until a wall could be stacked up. Some of those walls are still there. Donald the Walker would have probably used a traditional Scottish wooden foot-plough when he first started planting wheat between the stumps. Metal ploughshares and teams of horses would come later - there were still too many stumps in the ground for long straight furrows anyway.

The summer of 1822 was the summer I imagine Donald the Walker became Donald the 'Tree-Cutter'. Not only did he and his family have to clear enough space to grow crops and animal feed for the winter, they also had to build a winter-proof shanty and cut enough firewood to keep them alive until spring.

When the first wheat was harvested from around the stumps, Hugh, Archibald and Daniel helped their father fill two-bushel bags of the grain. In the fall of 1822, the nearest gristmill to grind the wheat into anything edible was located thirty miles away near a town called Brampton.

Here is where I believe the story of Donald the Walker takes on a certain legendary quality. He had no horse, and two-bushel bags of wheat were too heavy even for him. Hugh and Archie watched as their father picked up one of the bags, threw it over his shoulder and carried it along the path through the woods. He carried it for half-a-mile then put it down by the side of the path and returned to the farm, no doubt trying to remember how to breathe normally again. When he got back to the farm, the boys saw their father pick up the second bag of wheat and walk back down the path. He staggered a half-mile past the first bag, put the second one down beside the path, walked back to the first bag, threw it over his shoulder and walked it half-a-mile again past the second bag. Donald the Walker leapfrogged in this manner all the way to Brampton. When the grain was milled it made just less than a bushel of flour, which easily fit into one bag. Donald then hopped it back to Erin and, I imagine somewhere along that journey, he fantasized about owning a horse one day. On his arrival at the shanty, Donald handed over the flour to his wife, Catherine, who promptly whipped up some scones. The deliciousness of those scones was remembered and handed down through the family for one hundred years.

In 1831, my great-great-great-grandmother, Flora Milloy, her husband John McLean and their eight children arrived on the McMillans' doorstep from Glen Barr. The McLeans lived with the McMillans for nine years until they'd saved enough to purchase a farm next to them from the Crown. Two of the McMillan boys, Hugh and Archibald, fell in love with two of the McLean girls. That's right, they were first cousins and the two brothers married the two sisters. This is the kind of thing that tangles the branches of family trees and drives amateur genealogists crazy.

I look at Hugh's picture a little more often than Archie's. As Hugh sits there in his brick farmhouse in 1899, in his ninety-second year, he's very deaf and nearing the end of his life. I imagine him looking into the new-fangled, photographic camera thinking of his descendants, of who they might be one hundred years in the future, and what they might think of him. Hugh looks like the kind of man I would like to sit down with over a wee dram and listen to for hours.

So now my trek is over and I'm standing inside the ruins of Stockdale (a.k.a. Stockadill) croft. It was once a thriving, bustling working farm. Various McLean children were born inside its drystone walls, oatcakes toasted before the fallen hearth, ceilidhs held under its thatch, and funeral wakes too, no doubt. Now it stands broken and open to the wind and the rain. The hundreds and hundreds of descendants of the people who once lived here are scattered around the world. Many of them, having read some of my articles in various newspapers and on the internet, have corresponded with me. Some of them have subsequently made the same trek up the Glen of Barr.

It's raining and I'm taking pictures with a damp camera. I'm tired and my feet are sore. I'm soaked through but I'm glad I came. My father couldn't make the walk with me. His knees are older than his spirit. I'm contemplating the long walk back to the MacArthurs' bed and breakfast at Arnicle Farm when I hear the sound of a tough little all terrain vehicle. My father couldn't make the walk, but he's cadged a ride with Ian MacArthur. Dad's also wearing a bright red, space-age, rain outfit that's kept him dry as a bone. As I said before, no fool he. I wonder if there's room on the bike for me too. It's a long way back.

The Dispersal of the Brown Family of Kerranbeg and Machrimore, Part II-
Graeme Reynolds

Margaret Ballantine

Isabella Brown, the fourth child of Edward Brown, married Thomas Ballantine, at the United Presbyterian Church of Scotland, Erskine, Renfrewshire, on 5 July, 1847. The proclamation of banns at Southend was recorded under the surname 'Bannatyne'. Their first child, Margaret Ballantine, who was born on 29 April, 1849, was baptised at the Free Church, Erskine. Her brother, James, born 8 December, 1850, was also baptised there.

The last mention of these four people in Scotland might be gleaned from the extraction of the children's baptisms, parents' marriage and Thomas Ballantine's birth, which were obtained in 1857-9. Perhaps these extracts, which are among Margaret's few surviving private papers, were arranged as part of the emigration. No record of shipping for the four has been located. It is possible, on the basis of the date of the latest extraction, that Margaret Ballantine emigrated between 1859 and 1864. It is also possible that Margaret had migrated with Jean and Andrew Paterson prior to 1856. Isabella Ballantine had been mentioned in James Brown's estate in 1859. It may be that Margaret was the only member of her immediate family to reach Victoria, for in 1864 she was in the care of her aunt and uncle.

On 23rd December, 1864, Margaret Ballantine married Herbert Williams at Talbot, Victoria, in the Presbyterian Church. The marriage certificate states that her parents were farmers. Margaret, a servant, normally resided at Amherst, a mining town three miles north-west of Talbot. The marriage certificate given to Margaret Ballantine, now Mrs. Williams, differs in one important detail from the copy filed through the minister and the civil registrar. On the registrar's copy is the annotation that 'Andrew Paterson, uncle and guardian of the bride' consents to her marriage. This annotation, which revealed that Margaret Ballantine was no longer with her parents and was in the care of her aunt and uncle, also identified one of the witnesses to the wedding. The presumption is that the young Margaret had been with the Paterson couple at Talbot.

Gold mining was an uncertain occupation. Selection of poor ground might waste labour and time and cost precious money in living expenses where costs in the fields were subject to fluctuation. Shortage generated higher prices. A glut saw reduced prices. Margaret and Herbert Williams resided on the goldfields at Talbot, where the first child was born, before moving to Clunes, where this child died and was buried; they had moved to Pleasant Creek by 1868. In the following year they moved westward to Germania, which had been discovered after timber-cutters, who had stowed their bottle of liquor under green tops the top leaves of the boughs of cut trees - had, in retrieving the liquor, accidentally knocked some rock and discovered gold. Germania was set in an ironbark eucalypt forest. This discovery opened a new reef to the north of an old field.

Although Deep Lead had been a booming settlement in the late 1850s, by the era of the Williams' residency, it had lost much of its revelry. A reporter for Ararat Advertiser in July 1865 wrote nostalgically of the former glory of Deep Lead. Four miles from Stawell, Deep Lead was a 'wide and long expanse of holes that are for the most part deserted'. Socially, 'sounds of laughter once broke constantly from the mining habitués of fascinating saloons of canvas and weatherboards, laughter that betokened the claims to talent of cool waitresses ...' Restored to sobriety and order, there were a 'few bark houses' with gardens and vegetable allotments.

Deep Lead in geological terms was an unusual field. There had been no signs of volcanic activity in prehistoric time. The gold-bearing areas were mostly under the existing hills and elevated surfaces, with the modern valleys generally too poor to pay for their working. These valleys were so shallow that only a skilled eye might apply this term to the gentle undulations across the plains. In 1865, gold in wash dirt had often exceeded 72 ozs. to the load. This gold was 'water-worn and fine' with larger pieces seldom reaching one pennyweight. The wash dirt bearing gold was set in leads of between 120 and 460 feet wide and only two to eight feet thick at a depth of approximately 60 to 80 feet. This would have accounted for the widespread and erratic nature of the layout of the diggings. The post-1869 interest in the field explored deeper ground.

While the Germania field had opened in 1869, it was not until 1873 that a lease for the Germania Quartz Mining Company (QMC) was submitted. Margaret Williams held 60 shares in this venture. Early in 1874, the company reported sinking a shaft 174 feet and drives (horizontal tunnels) and rises (excavations towards, but not reaching the surface) totaling 233 feet as well as erecting the necessary equipment. Even at this depth, however, the volume of water in the diggings kept four horses at work driving the pumps. Even with this capital work to open a four-foot reef, the directors were pessimistic about the prospects. Machinery for pumping was mooted, but when only four cwts. of gold had been extracted from 37 tons of quartz, work was suspended until the half-yearly meeting. The Minister for Mines approved the suspension of work until January 1875. Perhaps the company struggled into the next year. The lease was forfeited in 1877.

It is unlikely that the Williams family's only interest in mining was in the Germania Junction Company as more successful enterprise spread its interests around the industry. A family friend, Thomas Lloyd, who had left for Echunga diggings in South Australia, had purchased shares in the Break o' Day Company at Echunga at £1 and sold these to Herbert Williams for £3 two months later. This was the market price of the day. Herbert Williams and Thomas Lloyd also held interests in the West Germania QMC at this time. In February 1874, Thomas Lloyd, fearing the heavy calls required for machinery at the mine, asked Herbert to sell the shares. By December 1874, Thomas's consternation had eventuated. Calls of eleven pennies had been made in the interval. Despite the initial allotment of 5000 shares, by May 1874 Herbert owned 100 fully-paid shares.

On 15 May 1878, Herbert Williams bought one of the 11 shares in the co-operative company, the North and South Wales Crushing Company. Most of the other shareholders were Welshmen. The purchase of this £200 share included a quarter-acre block of land where a four-roomed weatherboard house and other buildings was sited at Deep Lead, a short distance through light scrub from Germania. The ability to pay this purchase price revealed that Margaret and Herbert had been modestly successful in mining. Herbert became the manager of the crushing battery, which was located close to their residence. This battery was powered by steam, supplied from a boiler drawing water from the Engine Dam. The steam action ran a machine, which had a series of cam shafts, whose rotation forced the elevation of heavy stamping heads and freed them to drop on to the gold-bearing stone. A water-flow through the grinding process also facilitated the extraction of gold. This form of gold extraction was particularly noisy and involved much vibration. Perhaps it is no wonder that the Williams home was situated at a distance from the site. Herbert Williams's expertise in the operation of the battery is unknown, but it may reflect either his earlier maritime experience or recent work on the earlier fields.

The Crushing Company handled 164,205 tons of 'cement' from the mines at Deep Lead and extracted 42,842 ounces of gold over a 30-year period to 1891. The introduction of this machinery allowed old loads to be re-worked for gold and for all loads to be handled more cheaply. By 1860, costs had dropped from £7 to £1-15s - meaning that loads bearing gold at only one to two ounces became viable. The introduction of new machinery and technology enabled a brief, successful revival across the Deep Lead field. This sporadic success in mining may account for the broadening of the Williams' interest across the mining industry.

At Deep Lead residential stability was attained. Margaret Williams would appear to have lost contact with her maternal relatives during these moves.

Margaret Williams's husband, Herbert, fossicked and dug for gold on a number of goldfields before settling at Deep Lead, where he worked on a periodic basis for some 40 years. His bank records from 1886 to 1921 are remarkable for the unusually small amount of money withdrawn and the irregularity of withdrawal. In part, this suggests that he probably relied on the regular sale of gold to meet the family's expenses. Some people in the 1990s could recall, from childhood, their meeting Herbert Williams, who drove a phaeton but offered little commitment about the success or otherwise of his current mining. Even young children in Deep Lead were not misled by his taciturn remarks. His driving a phaeton was sufficient for them to realise that it would have been incongruous with poor mining. Marcus Clark in Grumbler's Gully, a commentary on Stawell, the current name for Pleasant Creek, in the late 1860s, had written eloquently of the relationships in a goldfield town. He remarked that: 'Men come to Australia to get rich, if they don't get rich they go to the wall. In Melbourne one can in a measure escape the offensive patronage of the uneducated wealthy, but in a mining township, where life is nothing but a daring speculation, the brutal force of money is triumphant.'

A grandson recalled that, as a young boy in the 1907-14 period, he had walked with his mother from the Williams home toward the railway-line until they reached a point among the diggings, when the mother began to call her father. Within minutes, Herbert emerged from the ground. The story conveyed the view that even this daughter in Melbourne had a good understanding of where Herbert could be found mining. An example of this fossicking activity is noted in 1875 for the registration of ground 600 by 600 feet for 'prospecting claim on wet sinking' west of the West Ophir Coy.

While the Scots records sustain the practice of an address 'in', the Welsh Bible in this family reported the birth of each child as occurring 'on -------' meaning 'on the goldfield'.

Part I
Part III

Copyright belongs to the authors unless otherwise stated.

The Kintyre Antiquarian & Natural History Society was founded in 1921 and exists to promote the history, archaeology and natural history of the peninsula.
It organises monthly lectures in Campbeltown - from October to April, annually - and has published its journal, 'The Kintyre Magazine', twice a year since 1977, in addition to a range of books on diverse subjects relating to Kintyre.

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