...do YOUR families link back to first South Australian wheat growers?
Christina and Donald McLEAN from Scotland 1837
1863 - 1949 (86 years)
||Rachel MCLEAN  |
||21 Mar 1863
||Strathalbyn SA 
- birth 'Meadow Bank' Strathalbyn SA
- After the Allan family removed to the mid-north in 1878 Rachel met William Prescott Hornby who was working at the Hotel at Collins said to be against the wishes of Allan and his wife, took place on 19/4/1881 at Red Hill, in the Pt Broughton - Crystal Brook area, 106 miles north of Adelaide. Rachel was aged 18 and Bill as her husband was called, was 22. He was bom at sea aboard the "Mary E|izabeth" on 17/12/1858, 14 days out from England on the way to South Australia. He was the eldest son andnamed after his father. He was completely uneducated and was working at the age of 11 on the Dry Creek railway line for one shilling and sixpence (15 cents) a day. (no doubt Allan's objection to the marriage was due to Bill's lack of schooling, and there was a break with the family except for Rachel's sister Mary, Mrs Nutt of Orroroo). Bill worked for some years on northern sheep stations and was then at Collins then owned by Collins and later by Coffeys. At that time he and Rachel lived
In 1884 they obtained their own land in the Pt Broughton district, 107 miles north and west of Adelaide. They were one and a half miles N.E. of the town on the northern side of the Port Pirie Road and here they remained until old age. Their home was a dug-out cellar type but it flooded so they built 4 rooms of "pug and pine" with white washed super bag ceilings. More lean-to rooms of galvanised iron were added as the family increased. Cooking was by wood stove and laundering was done out of doors under a spreading pepper tree until a wash house was built and to this a car shed was joined in later years.
More blocks of land were bought as they could afford them until they owned approximately 1000 acres. Finance came from cropping and farm produce. They sold eggs and butter to the town shops and residents, and they also had a milk round, At one stage wheat sold at one shilling and ninepence (18 cents) per bushell and in 1914 they reaped only 49 bags and had to request a bank loan to keep going but in 1915 hard work was rewarded with 1000 bags and so they were out of debt.
Rachel's last surviving child, May Malycha, was living in November 1990 and described her mother as good, kindly, reliable and a gentle loving mother, an out-going country woman who managed the family business well. She was above average height with nicely rounded features and wore long black dresses always. She gave birth to all her eleven children at home with the aid of a midwife, Mrs Watson, and in later years was often herself called on for the same service.
Bill was something of a character. Short in stature, of wiry build, with a bushy beard and smoked a foul smelling pipe. He liked the odd drink if Rachel gave him the money. He doubled the price he needed so he could have 4 drinks instead of 2. The eleven children were 7 daughters and 4 sons and only Arthur did not marry and died at the age of 45.
All the children attended Pt Broughton School, starting at 9 years and leaving at 13 or 14. In due course the sons went their own way, though working at home in their teen years, except for Gordon who continued to work with his father and eventually acquired that land and farmed about 600 acres.
Water was a problem early on and the men of the family would take a tank on a wagon pulled by three horses up over the Collings Gap to Red Hill to buy water which was 9 pence (9 cents) a ban'el at one time. Returning up the eastern side of the Gap, once, heavy rain fell as they neared the top, so they decided to let the water go as there was no real road and the going was not easy. As they neared home the rain ceased and their own place was bone dry, so they had to turn round and make a repeat journey.
Eventually the house had two underground tanks, one for home consumption and the other for stock. The water was drawn up by bucket and stored in barrels. One day Rachel walked over the cover of a tank and it gave way. She fell but being broad shouldered she was wedged. After much yelling for help she was carefully lifted out. Water in such tanks is always cold so buckets of cream were lowered to chill for butter making, salt was added and one pound pats formed for sale in exchange for meat from butcher Harry Barker and for groceries from Fraser and Gillies. Eggs were sold in the same way as they always kept hens, ducks and geese. When on rare occasions the children received spending money they were able to buy 2 buns for a penny (1 cent) or a stick of licorice for the same.
There were always cows to be milked twice a day, at one time 18, but usually 10 or 11. The children did the milk round at Pt Broughton, taking a horse and cart loaded with cans and customers were charged 2 pence (2 cents) a pint. When the round was the reins were tied to the can and the horse sent home with the empty cans for Rachel to wash and prepare for next day. This was not altogether popular locally as the reliable old horse refused to move aside to allow cars to pass. Cars were then just beginning to be used as transport.
Once, May and Maggie, used sovereigns paid for accounts, to play "Knuckle bones" as they travelled home in the cart. They had no idea of the value of the coins and when they were onto the road they made no attempt to recover them. Rachel took them back and made them search until they were found, every penny being needed.
In earlier years Bill worked hard. Later he made sure that his sons did the same. To augment the income he did boat work and worked at the wheat stacks. He kept up to 10 draught horses and the children had to take them to Fishermens Bay by the roadway to water which was the first to get piped water.
Maggie was the helper in the house, but May was an outside worker and drove a team. Once, when she had little brother Gordon with her and he disobeyed her order to sit still, he fell, and the plough went right over him, fortunately without causing any injury. He was so dirty that May undressed him, thoroughly shook out his clothes, redressed him and kept quiet about the incident and did not confess for many years.
Occasionally Rachel and Bill would harness up the two grey horses to the buggy, and leaving at 3 a.m. would drive to Pt Pirie with some of the children. They would travel across country and after completing their "buy up" would return home after dark and reach there after midnight.
In later years there was a car, a new (black, naturally) Model T. Ford. The story is told that one evening after a visit to the township, and maybe with one drink too many, Bill came in around the gate and could not stop at the car shed in time - and in spite of calling loudly "Whoa! Whoa!" the car went into it and straight through the other end. Maggie learnt to drive but May never did.
The race course on the Hornby property was on the swamp between the old home and son Allan's. The annual race meeting was a great day. Horse stalls were of mallee rails and Rachel and her family catered, charging two shillings (20 cents) for a dinner. Pies, pasties, sausage rolls, pudding and custard, cakes, etc. As children the family made its own amusements with highlights of days at Fishermans Bay, school and Sunday School picnics. Later there were dances and socials at Pt Broughton. Horses were tied up to pepper trees along the west side of the old hall in Mackay Street.
A newspaper cutting records that the marriage of daughter May to Jack Malchya took place in April 1931 at St. PhiIIip's Church and the reception for 120 persons was held in conjunction with the 50th wedding celebration of Rachel and William Prescott Homby, at the residence of Allan and Tot Homby, the verandahs protected by hessian awnings being the main venue. Jack, a brother, made the wedding cakes as he was working for PuIford's, the town bakers, at the time.
Rachel was fond of photographs and covered the house walls with them, some being of very large size so that one could say she still had her family around her when all had gone to homes of their own.
For many years she donated Bibles to the Methodist Sunday School as the Anglican's did not have a Sunday School. Bill called his children "bloody Wesleyan buggers" as they cut through the paddocks on Sundays. Bill was Catholic, Rachel Methodist, so naturally they married in the Anglican Church. Stained glass windows at St. Phillip's were donated by Rachel. The story is told that one day when the vicar called on a pastoral visit Bill called out loudly "who the hell is that old buggar out there" while the family tried to make him hush up.
In 1936 floodwaters rushed through the old house, damaging furniture and floor covering (linoIeums) so they shifted to a small house at Pt Broughton where Maggie next door, and other family members were very supportive. In 1946 when W.W.2 was over, the owner Henry Summerton needed this house in Mackay St. for his son Claude so Bill and Rachel lived until their deaths with vanous family members. In these last years Bill was a contrary old man - deaf, swore profusely, talked loudly and was rather bad tempered - quite a handful in fact.
Their Diamond Wedding was held at the Institute on 19/4/1941 with a vast gathering of family. A newspaper cutting tells of the various speakers, the musical entertainment and that they had spent 57 years at Port Broughton. Bill and Rachel had raised 1000 pounds ($2000) for war charities during the 1914-18 war.
William Prescott Hornby on 4/5/1948 in his 90th year at the Red Hill home of his daughter May Malchya.
Rachel died at the residence of daughter Beattie Gransden at Port Pirie on 6/8/1949 aged 86 years.
Both were interred at Port Broughton.
The Hornby farms there have stayed within the family as the land is now owned by great grandson Allan Aitchison.
(Note: We are indebted to another great grandchild, Gloria Edwards, nee Hornby, for this delightful account of her pioneer family. The compiler (E.M.S.) has shortened it a little to use information of family members in their own sections.)
||6 Aug 1949
||Port Pirie SA 
||Port Broughton SA 
||Christina and Donald McLean | Allan McLean's descendants
||22 Feb 2021 |
||William (Bill) Prescott HORNBY, b. 17 Dec 1858, Adelaide SA , d. 4 May 1948, Redhill SA (Age 89 years) |
||19 Apr 1881
||Redhill SA 
- Marriage at PM Parsonage in Redhill.
||* They met when Bill was working at the hotel in Collinsfield.|
* Maybe because of Bill's lack of schooling, the marriage was against the wishes of Allan and Catherine. There was a break with the whole family except with Mary. (BRB p101)
| ||1. Allan William HORNBY, b. 9 Oct 1882, Port Broughton SA , d. 10 Dec 1970, Port Broughton SA (Age 88 years) |
| ||2. Albert John (Jack or Linc) HORNBY, b. 2 Feb 1885, Port Broughton SA , d. 26 Oct 1977, Port Broughton SA (Age 92 years) |
| ||3. Arthur James HORNBY, b. 13 Feb 1887, Port Broughton SA , d. 1943 (Age 55 years) |
| ||4. Rachel Catherine Beatrice (Beattie) HORNBY, b. 4 Aug 1889, Port Broughton SA , d. 15 Aug 1975 (Age 86 years) |
| ||5. Winifred Isobella (Belle) HORNBY, b. 3 Aug 1892, Port Broughton SA , d. 20 Oct 1941, Cowell SA (Age 49 years) |
| ||6. Ethel Mabel HORNBY, b. 5 Oct 1894, Port Broughton SA , d. 27 Sep 1969 (Age 74 years)|
| ||7. Winifred (Winnie) HORNBY, b. 7 Mar 1896, Port Broughton SA , d. 20 Feb 1927, Adelaide SA (Age 30 years) |
| ||8. Doris (Ivy) HORNBY, b. 28 Feb 1899, Port Broughton SA , d. 19 Jul 1978, Dudley Park SA (Age 79 years) |
|+||9. Pretoria May HORNBY, b. 12 Jul 1900, Port Broughton SA , d. 12 Oct 1991, Red Hill SA (Age 91 years) |
| ||10. Margaret (Maggie) Guinn HORNBY, b. 11 Aug 1904, Port Broughton SA , d. 9 Apr 1982 (Age 77 years) |
| ||11. Gordon Frederick George HORNBY, b. 19 Apr 1906, Port Broughton SA , d. 19 Jul 1981 (Age 75 years)|
||22 Apr 2019 12:21:09 |
||Group Sheet | Family Chart
||0143 - L to R Gordon, Rachel, Allan & Jack Hornby-and front William Prescott Hornby - from BRB p181.jpg|
||0169 - Ireland, Edwards, Munzer, Malycha, & Hornby at May Malycha's birthday.jpg|
M M (I2222)
KJ H (I2257)
GE H (I1718)
||0165 - 4 generations - Rachel Hornby, Doris Hollamby holding Janet & Ivy Hornby.jpg|
JE H (I2126)
DE W (I2124)
||0141 - William Prescott & Rachel Hornby.jpg|
||0144 - L-R Maggie, Gordon, Ivy, Beet, Allan & May - in front William & Rachel Hornby.jpg|
||J23 - Edwin McLean's letter in 1946|
This letter was probably to Edwin's cousin, Rachel Hornby. He alludes to Rachel's parents (Catherine & Allan McLean), her brothers (Allan & Jack 'JSD'), uncle (Hugh the younger), aunty (Elizabeth Ann & Mathew Johnston) and the Keoughs.
Updated June 2021
- [S-3] BRB 'Donald & Christina McLean & Their Descendants', 1995 copies available, Copies of the BRB available Strathalbyn National Trust Museum & Library, several libraries around Australia including State Library SA, and Western Australian Genealogical Society Bayswater WA Request assistance for locating a copy through 'Contact us' on this website. .
- [S-8] PUBLICATION Dawson book in Goolwa Library, Yvonne Heath of Morphettville, (Heath of Morphettville), C0461991941 - Goolwa.
- [S-59] Family History Group SA-COLONISTS, Barry Leadbetter, 16 Jan 2017 Research: Lorna McLean.
Married Allan McLean and Catherine Dawson at "Wheatsheaf Inn, Mt Barker SA aged 33, 19yoa on 29 Feb 1844". Ref: 7/34