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Weatherburn-Royes Connection

Bill Weatherburn married Ruth Royes in 1933 in Mareeba, QLD

- Glenda Pollard

My mother Ethel Ruth Royes married John William Weatherburn, in Mareeba on 1st November 1933. In the bridal party are, Eddy Ganley, Mary Weatherburn, Will and Ruth, Bert Royes, Joyce McFarlane and Edna Royes. This information I received recently from Joyce Trimble nee McFarlane.

Will Weatherburn was the eldest son of the Royal Hotel Mareeba publicans, Joseph and Bertha. Ruth had met him while working there in the dining room.They had come to Mareeba from Peeramon where they also had owned the Peeramon Hotel.

While they were living in Peeramon Joe, along with his brother in Law, Jesse Gardener, two friends and an aboriginal guide where the first white party to cross over Mt Bartle Frere. (Group picture below right, Dave Imry, Jesse Gardener, Joe Weatherburn, Charlie Civry and Mosie.) It took two attempts to even leave from Boonjie, due to the weather being misty and inclement, them 3 days to get down to Babinda, where they spent the night. The next day they caught the train to Cairns, and then went over to Green Island for a bit of a fishing holiday.

I have traced back the Weatherburn family to David or John c1590. This is not totally verified as yet, as a lot of my information was gained from other branches of the family going to Scotland and looking for ancestors 15 - 20 years ago. Two separate family tree books were printed, The Gardeners, (Bertha Weatherburn's Family) printed c1980 and The Weatherburns from Joe's family printed July 1997.

This is where I correlated the information I now have on my family tree. I have recently had more additions and information come from people on Genes Reunited. One source of information has spent a lot of time visiting Berwick area to gain more information as not a lot is yet recorded on the net. This was largely because Berwick is on the border of Scotland and England, and over the years it has been English or Scottish, and while Scottish, it has not been part of the census information gained.

The Weatherburns, Wedderburns, Weatherbournes - Couple of different spellings, seem to have mainly come from around Berwick area. John Weatherburn, 1679 and his siblings where born in Alnwick Northumberland, Henry c1745, born in Chatton, Christopher, 1807 was born in Loanend Norham and his children where born at Hutton or Horncliffe. Their third and youngest son migrated to Australia, they were living in Dipton, County Durham before they left. They were Primitive Methodists and could read and write well. John was listed as a stonemason on the shipping manifest. They departed from England 25th July 1878, with their 2 small children, Elizabeth, 2, and Christopher an infant. They settled in Adamstown, NSW, where a further 8 children were born. A Mr J Weatherburn was a Minister in Adamstown, 1908-1910, and I have recently found that Joe Weatherburn sold a couple of blocks of land to the Methodist Church in Mareeba, in December 1939 for One Hundred Pounds. Later on Will and Ruth Weatherburn lived just 2 doors up from the Ministers house, (finished 1941) which was beside the New Church on the corner (finished 1960), and around the corner Old Church (finished 1957), which is now the Church Hall.

In the past generations in Scotland, there were Blacksmiths, Salmon Fishermen, publicans, stonemasons, Railway engineers and many other occupations. Some of the family has been able to be traced because they were Freeman of Berwick. This title is handed down father to son, when he turns 21. In July of each year, Freeman used to ride the Bounds of the Borough to reaffirm their title. A vast number of buildings in Berwick, were owned by Weatherburns, but an Old Aunt Mary was quoted as saying "they owned the buildings but drank the profits and lost the lot." Even checking out the Wedderburn Castle on line, it states that it was lost by its owner and sold out of the family. This apparently came down the generations, as Joe Weatherburn the Hotel Licensee, was known to have a few drinks, and go and sit under the trees that used to be in the middle of the main street of Mareeba. My sister Fay was often sent to bring him home for a meal. But he did not loose any of his property as the old ones did.

As all of you would know, this is an ongoing project, with new additions and either confirmation of some facts, or proving a person has no connection to this branch of the family.


Owner/SourceGlenda Pollard
Linked toFamily: Weatherburn/Royes (F30)

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