William Patterson and Eliza Grace

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Parents  :    William Patterson and Maria Denam            Richard and Deborah Grace (Their nanes are all we know)

William Patterson (b abt 1818 London, m Eliza Grace 1844 Launceston Tas, d 1882 Cumberoona NSW)
Eliza Grace (b 1820 King's County Moneygall Ireland, d 1887 Cumberoona Nr Bowna NSW)
    Richard Eyre Patterson (b 1844 Launceston, m Mary Anne Hore 1874 Bowna NSW, d 1918 Brisbane)
    William John Patterson (b 1846 Launceston, d 1957 Cascade Gorge Tas)
    Anne Maria Patterson (b 1848 Launceston, m William Paull Broome 1877 Albury NSW, d 1938 West Wyalong NSW)
        Eircell Paullina Broome (b 1884 Talgarno, m Joseph Smart Rowley 1909 Talgarno, d 1917 Bethanga)
    Charles Patterson (b 1850 Launceston, d 1852)
    Elizabeth Patterson (b 1852 Launceston, m Robert Wallace 1884 Bowna NSW, d 1925)
    George Albert Patterson (b 1854 Launceston, m Louisa Elizabeth Kirkham 1884 Tambo Qld, d 1911 Winton Qld)
    Edward Urban Patterson (b 1856 Launceston, m Eliza Anna Head 1885 Roma Qld, d 1944 Towantin Qld)
    Alicia Alberta Victoria (Berta) Patterson (b 1861 South Yarra Vic, m Samuel Emmett 1884 Goulbourn NSW, d 1917 Tahmoor)
    Henry Hilton Patterson (b 1862 Talgarno Vic, m Eliza Hore 1888 Albury NSW, d 1917 Tahmoor)

Janet Patterson's book summarises all we know about Eliza's origins.
William and Eliza were the Wallace sister's grandparents, and are discussed in their family notes.
William Patterson was a Produce dealer at 23 Chapel St, South Yarra 1861-3 in the Melbourne business directory. This is about where the Jam Factory is now
For an excellent coverage of William and Eliza, see Chapters three four and five of Janet's book  Selected extracts now follow in italics

11 September 1833 - Arrival
4th March 1844 - Marriage
Family Residence
Death of Children
Departure from Tasmania 
Residence in Chapel Street, South Yarra
20 June 1861 - Birth of Alicia Victoria Alberta Patterson
27th November 1863 - Birth of Henry Hilton Patterson
1869 Arrival of Patterson Family
Family Life
18th November 1882 - Death of William Patterson
18th December 1887 - Death of Eliza Patterson

11 September 1833 - Arrival

    William Patterson (Junior) arrived in Tasmania with his mother Maria, as a steerage passenger on board the Indiana which arrived in Hobart Town 11 September 1833.  On the shipping list his age was given as 15.In Maria's petition to Colonel Arthur ... he was mentioned as,  ...a Son who is entirely unprovided for..It is assumed that William would have lived with his mother at Mr Dean’s Livery Stables in Cimitere Street.


    Little is known of the early employment of William, however advertisements and press statements referring to a William Patterson in a number of occupations have been found.  It is not known if there were a number of citizens by that name residing in Launceston at the time.
Veterinary and Farrying Business
The following advertisement appeared in the Cornwall Chronicle of Saturday June 20 1835.
(Late of His Majesty’s Lumber Yard)
    Begs leave to announce to the Gentry and Public of Launceston, that he has opened an establishment opposite Mr Dean’s Livery Stables, in the Veterinary and Farrying Business, and trusts, that the attention and ability demonstrated in the Art, will be such as to gain the support of the discerning public.
    If favoured with support, no excertion shall be wanted to prove himself worthy of the same.
Boat Building
    During the 1840s a William Patterson was a boat builder further down the Tamar River.  In September 1844 he completed one boat in Launceston.  W M Dean was one of the directors of the Launceston Shipping Company, formed in 1848, for which a William Patterson built a ship in 1849.
    Land rented by W Patterson on the Tamar River, North Esk was mentioned in a Land Application by W Scott.  He applied for a suburban allotment between the Burial Ground and this land rented by W Patterson.
    Both these ventures seem to have had a connection with Mr Dean and indicate that William may have been sponsored by this gentleman.
    William’s occupation on his marriage certificate (1844) was given as Turner.  On 31st January 1844, just prior to his marriage, a notice in the Cornwall Chronicle reported that the partnership between J W Smith and William Patterson, cabinet makers, was dissolved.  This indicates that his training may have been in cabinet making or the building trade.
    On the birth certificate of his eldest son in 1844, William’s occupation was given as gentleman, indicating he may have sold a business and be living on the proceeds.
    By 1846 the family had moved to Wellington Street, and his occupation, as per the birth certificate of that year, was Dealer.  On certificates through to 1852 his occupation was given as Dealer, General Dealer or Storekeeper and in 1854, 1856, and 1857, he was listed as Draper.  The Directory of Launceston by F Proeschel also listed him as a Draper.

4th March 1844 - Marriage

    William Patterson married Eliza Grace at the Independent Chapel, Tamar Street Launceston. ....  It was the first non-conformist Church in Launceston.

Family Residence

    When Richard Eyre was born in 1844, the address of his father was given as East Street.  Apparently there was no East Street in Launceston at this time and it could have been Earl Street or the Eastern end of another Street.  Earl Street branches off Brisbane Street, so this may have been the correct address as it would have been close to the site of the school of William Patterson Senior in Brisbane Street.
On the certificates for all other family events, the father's address was Wellington Street.  A Map and Select Directory of Launceston, printed by F. Proeschel in the 1850, listed William Patterson, at Grafton House, 26, 27 and 28 Wellington Street.
    The assessment rolls listed this as a house and shop with a rateable value of £150 and owned by Robertson's Estate, with William Patterson as occupier.  The property was on the corner of Fredrick and Wellington Streets and opposite the Elephant and Castle.

Death of Children

    Charles Patterson died of convulsions at the age of 1 year 10 months on 23rd May 1852.
    William John Patterson was drowned at Cataract Gorge on 23rd December, 1857 at the age of eleven years.  The inquest ... findings were: "The said William John Patterson on the 23rd day of December in the year of aforesaid in a certain river situate in the County aforesaid called the South Esk was then and there casually accidentally and by misfortune suffocated and drowned and so the Jurors aforesaid upon their oath aforesaid do say that the said William John Patterson in the manner aforesaid accidentally casually and by misfortune came to his death and not otherwise."

Departure from Tasmania

    No records have been found of the departure of the family from Launceston, but it is assumed that the death of William John may have been the trigger for that move.  From the newspaper report of a fire in their former home, we know they had left Tasmania before 1st November 1859. There had been an exodus of Launceston residents to Victoria in the gold rush era of the 1850s and with the increased population and wealth in Victoria resulting from the discovery of gold, there would have been many opportunities in that colony for a storekeeper.
    Grafton House was destroyed by fire in 1859.  The report of this event in the Launceston Examiner dated November 1, 1859,  stated ....These premises were formerly occupied by Mr W. Patterson, who carried on the business of clothier and draper; but they had latterly passed into the possession of Mr Anthony Haret ....  From this we assess that the family had moved from Launceston prior to November 1859.... Alice Wallace in her memoirs recorded,  …When Burke and Wills the explorers set out from Melbourne, Grandfather and family drove out for some distance…  This expedition left Melbourne on August 20th 1860.

Residence in Chapel Street, South Yarra

    In the Business Almanac, W Paterson (Patterson?) was listed as a Produce Dealer at 23 Chapel Street, South Yarra for the years 1861, 1862 and 1863.  In 1864 these premises were no longer in his name or used for the same business.  The building, between Palermo and Garden Streets consisted of a hall below and a residence above.
Michael Cannon, in Melbourne after the Gold Rush, described the area, ...By the late 50's, Chapel Street had been formed and metalled from the Yarra to Dandenong Road.  ……The South Yarra area was sold as 'suburban farms' and wealthy families had tended to monopolise the area.  Mansions were built on the eastern side of Chapel Street with their carriageways opening onto Toorak Road…
A Produce Business in that era should have seen brisk trade, as Michael Cannon reported in Melbourne after the Gold Rush  ...it is estimated that there were at least 20,000 horses in Melbourne, giving employment to 130 blacksmiths and farriers and 70 saddlers

20 June 1861 - Birth of Alicia Victoria Alberta Patterson

    An unnamed female child was born to William and Eliza Patterson at Chapel Street, South Yarra.  The birth was registered by Richard Eyre Patterson although he was still a minor.  The father's occupation was given as Corn Dealer. This child would have been Alicia Victoria Alberta (Berta) and she was possibly named at baptism although no record of her baptism has been found.

27th November 1863 - Birth of Henry Hilton Patterson

    An unnamed male child was born to William and Eliza Patterson at Norre Warren (now Narre Warren).  The birth was registered by Richard Eyre Patterson at Oakleigh.  (A marginal note from the Deputy Registrar alters R.E.'s age from 19 to 21, although 19 would have been correct and he was still a minor.)  The father's occupation was given as Farmer. This child would have been Henry Hilton and he may have been named at baptism, although no record of his baptism has been found.  One of the Jurors at the inquest into the death of William John at Launceston was Henry Hilton, so this child may have been named after him. .‘Family Trad’ has not given any indication of the family living or farming at Narre Warren.  All indications have been that the family went directly from Melbourne to Albury. 

1869 Arrival of Patterson Family

    Alice Wallace, in her memoirs, recorded,  …later they moved to Albury by buggy and wagon and grandmother drove the buggy…  …The story is told of old “Cumberoona” Hore, who saw a man with a wagon on a hill at what became “Elphin”.  Hore sent a man to order the wagon man away off his property, which he thought he had selected in Melbourne, but he had not.  The man was Grandfather, who had selected it in Melbourne.  Said Grandfather, “I will improve it and sell it to you later on”  After Grandfather’s death it became the property of one of the “Mugwee” Hores…
The property they took up was in the Parish of Cumberoona, County of Goulburn, Lands District of Albury, Portion 11 of 108 acres 2 roods, Constitutional Purchase 69.235.  The Conditional Purchase number shows that the land was acquired in 1869.  The Pattersons called their property Elphin and they established a solid dwelling on the block reportedly on a rise, the highest point on the block. The waters of the Hume Weir (completed 1936) now cover the property.  In dry times parts have emerged.  The Border Morning Mail of May 21, 1958 reported under the headline Receding Weir Uncovers Many Famous Landmarks.
......Recently I was driven by Mr Gordon Drummond of "Inverlock" Bowna over what has been for many years the bed of the Hume Weir and was shown the crumpled ruins of the once famous "Cumberoona” homestead and the former home of the Patterson family, who were reputed to have introduced Pattersons Curse to this country.  Further on we came to the corner post and the remains of the fence around the graves of Mr and Mrs. Patterson.  Wooden uprights still standing and a concrete floor here and there indicated where a barn, a stable or the kitchen of the former home had stood…
Photographs accompanied the report including one of the Patterson family graves and one of what is left of Elphin  …only the tumbled down chimney and a heap of bricks where the kitchen once stood, remain...  Unfortunately copies of these photographs could not be obtained.
    Further information about the site was given in a letter from Fred Griffith, who helped to develop the Pleasure Island Ski Resort on the Hume Weir for the Holbrook R.S.L. Club, written to the Secretary of the Albury and District Historical Society in May 1988.  ...The old Patterson home was on an island just out from the Club House the R.S.L. built.  The house was derelict but the main feature was an old brick bakers oven and a clump of "Tree of Heaven” suckers.  About 1960 the level of the Weir was raised by about 25 feet and this completely submerged the Patterson house.  It became a hazard to water skiers as the top of the house was just under the water and I hit it on several occasions over the years, it was flattened by club members and it is now only a flat unused island…
Today this island is known as Patterson Island.

Family Life

    Some insights into the life of the family are given by Alice Wallace in her memoirs.  …The younger children, George, Eddie, Henry and Berta (Mrs Emmett, Ruth’s mother) had not much education, most of it taught at home by grandfather and the older ones…  …The “Elphin” family was a happy one, but Uncle Richard was inclined to order the young ones about, and they resented it.  They were all musical and all could sing.  They played the piano or organ, concertina and calopian (?calliope, a steam organ).  The older sisters played church organs in the district…  …Grandmother had a wonderful garden of fruit vegetables and flowers.  There were no pests in those days or Codlin moth…

18th November 1882 - Death of William Patterson

    William Patterson, aged 64, died at his home in the Parish of Cumberoona.  He was buried on the family property Elphin the next day.  No minister of religion was in attendance....  The death certificate recorded the cause of death as Disease of the Heart and the duration of the illness, 'some years'.

18th December 1887 - Death of Eliza Patterson

    Eliza died at her home Elphin, Parish of Cumberoona.  She was buried on the property the same day.  The cause of death recorded on the death certificate was 'Heart Disease, Paralysis' and the duration of illness, three weeks.


Thanks to Wilma Drummond who supplied photographs and lots of good information, and to Janet Patterson for her authoritative account of the early Pattersons, and of the family later in Queensland. Janet had many helpers, acknowledged in the book


Janet Patterson, "The Pattersons of 'Rangelands' Winton".  To see contents. The book is 400+ A4 pages, beautifully produced. All bar 60 pages are about the Pattersons after they moved to Queensland. On the other hand, the 60 pages on England, Tasmania and Victoria/NSW reflect accumulated research by many people over a period of years.
Extracts are included on these pages, but these will always be selective, and you will miss out on most if not all of the illustrations.In general, highly recommended, and excellent value if you can find a copy.
I have lost contact with Janet, but may be able to provide machine readable text of parts of the book

Research Notes

Several people we contacted gave details of a William Grace raising a family in Launceston. Could they be related?
No evidence, but the family was William Grace b 1817 d Launceston 1905, wife Ann Maria Harmon/Harman, (b Franklin Village, Launceston),
Chidren all born Launceston starting 1839 Kezia Frederick, Mary Ann, Ellen Jane, Ambersine Maria, George William, Noah, Sophia, Emily (b 1861).
Anyone have a link?

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