George Ford from Paxton - Peters Genealogy Page

Peters Genealogy Page


George Ford from Paxton 1851-1915

George Ford from Paxton

George Ford is recorded as my Great Grandfather. George was married to Ellen Jane King in 1888 at Beenleigh Queensland.

Article by Hazel McMillan with vital information - John Ford Born 1822

George Ford was born about 1st February 1851 in Paxton Village in the Civil Parish of Hutton, Berwick-on-Tweed, Berwickshire, Scotland. His father was John Ford (#2) a farmer, butcher, grocer & storekeeper and his mother was Jane Guthrie. They were married on March 12 1847 in the one street village of Allanton in the Parish of Edrom, Berwick, Scotland.

The Census of 1851 records the following: -

(Insert Census)

John Ford (#2), in turn, was the son of John Ford (#1) and Cecilia Dickson who were married 22 January 1814. John (#1) was born Hutton 11 May 1784 and died 5 December 1872 aged 88.
They had at least two children


The farm was 30 Acres of which 12 was arable employing one lad

The 1891 census shows the same information with all three ten years older, as expected, but this is the last we find of daughter Cecilia, who was 30 unmarried. There is no sign of the three Ford grandchildren from Australia at this date.
The known children of John Ford (#2) and Jane Guthrie are: -

James Ford 1848 Hutton/Paxton
George Ford 1851 Hutton/Paxton
Elizabeth Ford 1855 Hutton/Paxton
John Ford 08/10/1857 Hutton/Paxton
Cecel (or Cecilia) Ford 22/11/1860 Hutton/Paxton
Thomas Guthrie Ford 13/12/1863 Hutton/Paxton
Jane Guthrie Ford 25/01/1869 Hutton/Paxton
Thomas Guthrie and Jane Guthrie appear to have died at an early age.

Searches at the Queensland State Archives in August 2005 revealed two possible immigration records for our George Ford.
The first is on 6th June 1878 from Greenock, Glasgow, Scotland on the 1080 ton "Rodell Bay" which carried a George Ford, aged 27, an "assisted" passenger, to Brisbane arriving 27th August 1878. The Captain was Mr. Lindsay and Matron Miss Neill, George was in fact aged 27 as stated.

The second record is: -

George Ford, a farm labourer from Berwick, Scotland, aged 26, came to Australia a "free" passenger (not "assisted") from the port of Glasgow in Scotland, on the 2,000 ton Clyde line iron steamer "Gulf of Carpentaria" under Captain R. Thompson. This was the steamer's sixth voyage to the colonies but not to Brisbane before. The ship sailed on 10th June 1885 and arrived in Brisbane on 12th August 1885. George would have been 36 in 1885 not 26. It is not known if there were age qualifications to immigrate or travel to Australia at the time which may have made George alter his age. It also may have been a relation of George Ford.

This George Ford may have been the son of James and Christian Ford who was 3 in the 1861 Hutton census.

Tuesday 18 August, 1885

The Gulf of Carpentaria, s., which was wrecked on Monday at 2 p.m. off Wilson's
Promontory, struck on a rock not marked on the chart, lying in the west entrance
to the channel between Cliffy and Anser Islands. She struck three times very
heavily and passed over, carrying away her rudder and sternpost. She began to
fill with water at once, and had 17 inches in her afterhold within 17 minutes.
Captain Thomson cleared four of the boats, and with passengers and crew left the
vessel about 15 minutes after striking, but stood by until she sank at 11:50
a.m. The engines were stopped immediately the vessel struck. No effects have
been saved. The Minister for Trade and Customs has issued a notice warning to
masters of vessels to keep a sharp lookout for floating wreckage. The Gulf of
St. Vincent a sister ship to the wrecked vessel, will leave Melbourne to-morrow
morning for Sydney, and will call at Wilson's Promontory to take the captain and
crew on to Sydney. The Gulf of Carpentaria was 2454 tons gross, and 1596 tons
net register, and was built at West Hartlepool in 1881. She had on board 1500
tons of Coal for Port Adelaide.
Little more is known about the "Gulf of Carpentaria" however, its sister ship the "Gulf of St. Vincent" has some more information.

"This ship was owned by D. McDougall's Greenock Steamship Company who named
their ships GULF OF ______. They were tramp ship owners, but their normal
routes were from the Clyde to the Persian Gulf and to the Gulf of Mexico.
The GULF OF ST. VINCENT was a 2450 gross ton ship, length 289.7ft x beam
38.1ft, one funnel, two masts (rigged for sails), single screw, speed 9
knots. Built 1881 by Wm.Gray & Co, West Hartlepool, she went aground in
July 1890, was abandoned and became a total loss. The company was later taken
over by Furness Withy & Co.[Merchant Fleets. vol.37 by Duncan Haws]
David Burrell's "Furness Withy 1891-1991" (World Ship Society 1992) gives a
little more in the context of FW's 1903 purchase of Gulf Line Ltd, and
points to a strong Australian connection

Gulf Line was an 1899 amalgamation of Greenock Steamship Company Ltd and
Gulf Line Association Ltd. Formed in Scotland during 1879 to build and
operate a fleet of modern steamers, the Greenock Steamship Company's first
ship was GULF OF SUEZ which entered service in 1880. A regular charter,
until 1892, was to Thames & Mersey Line for their service from London to
Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney. In 1890, they had also commenced to place
steamers on the Glasgow berth of Loch Line, loading alongside the sailing
ships for Melbourne and Sydney, whilst in their own name they operated a
service which dated back to 1866 from the United Kingdom to the West Coast
of South America. [then more on the company in the 1890s]."

The "Rodell Bay" shows a James Ford, also aged 27, in Steerage. It is not known if this was George's older brother James who was born about 1848 and about 3 years older than George.

After the announcement to the world that gold and diamonds had been discovered in South Africa, about 1880, George may have headed there. George may have travelled to Australia on a number of occasions to and from the mines of South Africa and back to his homeland in Scotland. George also attended his daughter Jane's marriage in South Africa in 1905 or was he working there at the time.

James Ford was the first born to John and Jane Ford and was born in 1848. In the 1871 Census James was 22, living at home and a draper. James appears to have come back to Australia about 1884 (possibly from NZ like his brother John ???) and spent the next 26 years in Victoria until about 1913. James married Jane Anderson on 1 December 1884, he was a Draper from Sydney aged 35, in Moor Street Fitzroy Victoria. James then spent the next 10 years in Queensland. James died of Heart Failure and Natural Causes on 29 June 1923 at Tweed Street, Coolangatta aged 75 years.

John Ford who was born in Scotland in 1857, left home when he was about 17 (about 1874) and moved to New Zealand. He may have remained there for the next 14 years until he was about 31 in 1888. He then moved to Australia where he remained for the next 22 years until he died in Mount Morgan in 1910 at the age of 53. (Died of Bronchitis and Heart Failure between 21st and 30th September 1910).

George Ford purchased land at Piggabeen, Tweed Heads, N.S.W. in 1889 and it is noted that when gold and diamonds were discovered in South Africa in 1880 there were workers from England, Scotland and many parts of the world who were intent on making a fortune there. In 1899 war broke out between the Boers and the British Empire and this lasted until 31 May 1902. It is unlikely that George was working there during that war.
On Wednesday 14th June 1893, George placed the following advertisement appeared in the Southern Queensland Record.

'My wife, Mrs. Ford, having left her home of her own free will and without my consent, I the undersigned, will not be responsible for any debt she may contract.

GEORGE FORD Paxton Villa Farm

Picabean Creek, 9th June 1893.'

Image here

It is thought that George soon after packed up his children, Jane, John and Cecilia, and headed for Scotland, where he deposited the children with his elderly parents, John and Jane Ford, and then set out for the gold mines at Boksburg. It was said that George took a "wet nurse" to look after the children on the long sea voyage.

It is also likely that his wife Ellen Jane Ford and her two daughters Bertha King and Mary Guthrie Ford had moved by this time, possibly to Beenleigh and by 1896 they were in Brisbane where Eva (1895) and Charles Henry Brady (1896) were born.

On 2nd October 1888 George married Ellen Jane King in Beenleigh and the next five years until 1893 he was raising his family at Pimpama and Piggabeen. In 1895 Jane, John and Cecilia are in Scotland as that is where John died aged 6 and in the 1901 census Jane 14 and Cecilia 10 are in Paxton Scotland with Grandfather John Ford.

George's mother (Jane Guthrie) died 24 November 1900 and his father John Ford died 20 January 1903, aged 80, it is not known what happened to Jane and Cecilia at this point.

The daughter of George Ford's sister Elizabeth was Isabella Purves and she was looking after the children in 1901 as disclosed in the census for that year. Isabella was then 22. It is assumed that she continued to look after the children.

The year is 1905 and Jane married Thomas Dennison in Orange Free State South Africa and George is present. Cecilia returns to Tweed Heads about 1906 when she is 16 and I assume with George Ford. By this time Ellen Jane has given birth to Eva on 31 July 1895 and Charles is born 25 September 1896 in Brisbane.

It is assumed that George now remains in Australia until his untimely accidental death at his Piggabeen forge on 'Paxton Villa' farm on 20 May 1915 aged 64. There was an inquiry into his death as the cash tin had been prized open. George's death certificate is Number 7923/1915 NSW.

The last Will and Testament of George Ford was dated 3 March 1911. William Henry Ducat, a farmer of Tweed Heads was appointed Executor and Trustee of his will. The whole of his estate was left in trust to his daughter Jane Dennison (there is no proof that she was his daughter), the wife of Thomas Dennison of Pilgrim's Rest, South Africa and to daughter Cecilia Trembath of Orange Free State South Africa. Jane King (Ford) married Thomas Dennison on 13 December 1905 at Pilgrims Rest South Africa. George Ford was a witness to that Marriage and gave his consent. Cecilia Ford married Joseph Saunders Trembath on 23 April 1911 in St Michael's Church Boksburg Transvaal, South Africa.

The estate of George Ford was valued at ₤3,041.13.9 and this was made up as follows: -

The real estate of George was made up of: -
100 acres Portion 32 Parish of Terranora, County
of Rous, Shire of Tweed, comprised in Crown
Grant dated 28th January 1902 Registered
Volume 1390, Folio 238 ₤1200
159 acres, 2 roods 20 perches being portions
80,81 and 127 Parish of Berwick comprised in
Crown Grant dated 7th May 1906 registered
Volume 1694, Folio 109 ₤1276
Three acres 3 roods comprised in Crown
Grant dated 8th September 1906 Registered
Volume 1723 Folio 125 (closed road) ₤45

TWEED DAILY 22.05.1915


Death at Pigabeen

From information received at Tweed Heads on Thursday night, it appears that a son of Mr. Hulcombe, of Picabean, passing Ford's forge at that place, short dusk, saw Mr. George Ford lying near a horse's heels, as if he had been kicked by the horse. Hulcombe reported the matter to the Tweed Heads police. It is understood that Ford got the horse to go to Murwillumbah, and had arranged to borrow some harness from Hulcombes. It was the matter of the harness that took Hulcombe to the forge. Constable McCrea went out yesterday to the spot and an inquiry is to be opened there at nine o'clock this morning.

Deceased was between fifty and sixty years of age, and an old resident of the district. Some years ago he was temporarily absent in Africa, where it is believed he accumulated a certain amount of money.

Mr. Arthur Keys, who was in Tweed Heads yesterday morning, stated that at 9.20 deceased was still lying as described by Hulcombe, and had every appearance of having been kicked behind the left ear.


- Probate Jurisdiction -No. 69 266-

In the Will of GEORGE FORD, late of Piggabeen, Tweed Heads, in the state of New South Wales, Farmer deceased.-- Notice is hereby given that the second accounts in the above Estate have this day been filed in my office. Chancery square, Sydney and all persons having any claim on the said Estate or being otherwise interested therein are hereby required to come in before me at my said office on or before the eleventh day of April1917, at 10 30 o'clock in the forenoon, and inspect the same, and if they shall think fit object thereto, otherwise if the said accounts be not objected to the same will be examined by me and passed according to law. And notice is also hereby given that on the allowance of the said accounts by the court, commission will be applied for on behalf of the Executor of the said Estate. Dated this ninth day of March, one thousand nine hundred and seventeen. R C MONDAY I,.S., Registrar PETER STREET, Proctor, Murwillumbah By his Agents, VILLENEUVE-SMITH and DAWES, A.M.P. -chambers, 89 Pitt street Sydney

The spelling of Piggabeen has been reproduced as per the newspaper report of the day. In 1911, in George Ford's Will, the Solicitors spelt it correctly.
The Death Certificate of George Ford has now been found and it shows the Cause of Death as: -

Natural causes probably Heart Failure

Findings at Inquest held at Piccabeen

S J Hamblin


22nd May 1915"

The Death Certificates shows that George was from Paxton Berwickshire Scotland and had been in NSW about 25 years and "Not Married" and there were no children listed.

(A Sidney J Hamblin was born Newtown Sydney 1864 and died 1922.)


Ford Ticks

On 10th instant a further discovery of ticks has made at Picabeen, when two head of cattle in a herd of fifty-three, on Mr. Ford's farm, were found to be tick infested. The Picabeen district is close to the border, and it is in these localities that the most frequent discoveries of ticks have been made in this district. The Brisbane Courier Tuesday 16 August 1910, page 2

Ford Farm from Air

George Fords Farm - Queensland Boarder is road on left.

Map George Ford Farm

Map of George's Land.

Monument to George Ford

Blacksmiths Death

Death of George Ford of Piggabeen.


A man named Ford, a blacksmith at Picabeen, was found dead in his forge on Thursday evening. Deceased has evidently been kicked by a horse behind the left ear. He was between 50 and 60 years of age.

Death at Picabean.

Death Notice George Ford

Results for:

PageRank: PR0

PageRank Output: 0.15

Marie Guthrie Ford (Grandma Richards) had a rickshaw the same as this when we lived at Scarborough in the 1950's. This one has been handed down from Cecelia Ford to her daughter May.