Back | History
Brushgrove Centenary 1885-1985
HISTORY OF BRUSHGROVE
compiled and written by Pamela G. Leslie
Pat Woodfield and Sandra Connelly (research assistants)
Use the "Find" feature of your browser to find the surname you are interested in. Don't just stop once you've found the first instance - through marriage etc the same surnames are often found in several different entries. Families are not arranged alphabetically. This was generously contributed to the CVGenWeb by: Rod Kennedy
Thomas Henderson, with wife Rebecca (nee Pullen) and toddler Harry, set up in 1880 as a storekeeper in Brushgrove. Henderson's business thrived, the store on the corner of River Street expanded: downstairs was grocery, ironmongery; you went up to clothing, fashions, millinery; they stocked everything that could possibly be needed by the community. Orders were collected one day, deliveries made the next, by horse-drawn dray for some five miles around.,
"Fairtrader", Henderson's dealing launch carried about f l000 worth of groceries haberdashery, etc; if it wasn't on board, they, brought it next week. Harry was first master of the "floating shop",. later his cousin George Henderson. They would take her Monday -Tuesday via south Arm to Maclean and back via the main river; Wednesday-Thursday was to Coldstream; Fridays was to Upper Southgate. They covered 70 miles a week, offering a service to the river folk to shop aboard in comfort. many traded eggs and poultry - ledgers of the day show these transactions; eggs were packed in wicker baskets 'with hinged lids, 36 dozen to each; fowls were taken from the holding coops near the main wharf and in crates about ten feet long they too were hoisted aboard to travel to the Sydney Markets as deck cargo. The Malachite and the Pulgenbar were two of the ships; they would also deliver
Henderson's goods from Sydney, or lace and linen imports direct from Ireland. These came In square metal containers which later. became rainwater tank!
After Rebecca died, small Harry and Lottie were cared for by Rebecca’s sister Charlotte Pullen, whom Tom Henderson duly married; their children were Victor, Effie, Millie , Clifton, Thomas and Gertie. It was a happy life, in a spacious, comfortable home (there were 13 rooms, with the long back room easily holding a table seating 30; all the visiting dignitaries stayed with the Hendersons, and Thomas’s concerns in local government lodged, as a JP , on well-nigh every committee ever set up in Brushgrove meant that they entertained a lot). They were musical: teachers visited, and all sang and played various instruments, from Effie's mandolin boys' band instruments. Gwen, Harry's eldest, has his cornet still.
Parties and other self- made fun highlighted life. From Cowper PS, all the young ones went on to Grafton High,going down on, say, the "Favorite" on Monday mornings, boarding at hostels and returning Friday evenings. Hendersons were pillars of the Church of England; Thomas was Instrumental in having the Brushgrove church built; he was a lay member of Synod; Harry was Sunday School Superintendent . Sports were important, and all the boys were good at cricket, tennis (they had a court), etc. The family participated actively in Agricultural and Flower Shows Lotties wedding in 1911 was a local highlight; so was Cliff's "welcome home" in 1919.
When the business of the river dwindled, Post-war, Hendersons moved away, like so many; Thomas was now over 70 and retired, with Charlotte and the girls, first to their house at Yamba, finally to Lindfield; Harry and Vic took their young families off to Sydney where opportunities were greater; Tom was in the motor trade (he returned to drive service-cars Brushgrove- Yamba in the 1930's)
The shop continued, in other hands for another 30 years - but the, heyday was over when the Henderson family left. Lois Carrington, Gwen’s eldest, will publish next year a book about the Hendersons, their interesting forebears, and their place in Australia - and their forty years in Brushgrove will be at the core.
Our thanks and acknowledgement to Lois Carrington for her help and information.
Born at Warwick (Qld) in 28 December, 1879.
Died 9 November, 1962 at his home in Brushgrove at the age of 82.
William Russell with his wife Jessie and daughter Doreen came to Brushgrove towards the end of 1910 as owner of the Brushgrove Hotel and he was Hotelier there on three separate occasions between that year and the middle 1940's. It was while he was owner of the Hotel that the top section of the-Hotel was added around the year 1922. He became very well known in the Clarence Area as a hotel keeper, bookmaker, valuator, horse-breeder, race horse owner and auctioneer. He was also known as 'Willumi, Bill or Billy Russell. He and his wife lived in Brushgrove for over 50 years. Because of these interests much of the running of the hotel was left to his wife who made all guests and permanent boarders one big family.
He was of a generous and jovial nature and always to the fore in assisting to organise carnivals or boxing contests in and around Brushgrove to raise money for any worthwhile occasion especially during the war years. He and his wife had a special love towards children, especially the Orphanage when it was located at Cowper. It was an annual event for them to entertain the children from the Orphanage to a party in the grounds of the Hotel each Palm Sunday.
He once gave a pair of boots he was actually wearing to a gent less fortunate than himself.
He had a very practical and humorous wit and perhaps he is best remembered by those who knew him for this wit. Many stories are still told about his quick retort during an auction or of a time when he was a victim of his own joke.
Once in his establishment he served a swaggie with a cool glass of the good fluid. This swaggie promptly drank most of it before producing the payment. Noticing that the payment produced was only half of the nominated sixpence for the drink "Mine Host" told him that he was threepence short. The swaggie who by now had finished his drink quickly informed the host that he was now the one that was threepence short.
Appreciating the way that he had been caught Mr Russell invited the swaggie for another drink "on the house.
On another occasion the local newspaper ran an impressive news item of how Mr William Russell the Brushgrove Publican had rescued a young boy who could not swim from drowning in the river behind the Hotel. The reporter had obviously not been completely informed on the circumstances of the rescue since the unfortunate lad was in the River because of his close proximity to Mr Russell who was fishing at the time. Our intrepid Publican who was not having much success at fishing had decided to liven up the day and was forced to jump fully clothed to rectify the situation which he had created.
Few people who came in contact with Mr & Mrs Russell could fail to have enjoyed the company of these gentle people who probably lived at a time and in an era for which they were best suited.
Our thanks and acknowledgements to Russell Wesslink for his help and information.
THE KEARN FAMILY HISTORY AND MEMORIES
William Kearns, born in Parramatta was the son-in-law of Mr Wallwork, formally a Pay-Master in the N.S.W. Regiment, and later the schoolmaster -at the Provisional School on South Arm. At the age of sixty, Mr Wallwork bought a property of 87 acres on the South Arm, and sent for William Kearns to help him manage the farm, which supported two families comfortably. In 1897 W Kearns bought the adjoining land. In 1885 he had married Francis Wallwork, and they raised a family of eight children.
In 1906, William bought a property in Brushgrove, on which was "The Bottom Hotel". His daughter helped him to run the business. There was a lane at the side of the property leading to a wharf from which the first punt ran across the river to Cowper. A rowing boat was used, people would ride down to the boat, saddles and passengers would be rowed across, and the horses swam behind. When the punt at the Southern end of the Island started operating, trade fell off, and Mr Kearns closed the Hotel. He pulled it down and built a family home on the river bank. In addition he built two
smaller homes and a Blacksmith's shop on the land. One fronted on to the lane and was let to Billy Henderson, the second, fronting Clarence Street, was let to Malcolm McSwan and Tom Roach rented the Blacksmith’s.
William's son, John, married Alice Hughes from the next door farm. She was daughter of William Hughes, whose father-in-law Mr Clark, had taken up selections on the Island for four of his sons. Until they reached 21 years, the legal age for owning land, William was to sit on the blocks, clearing them and preparing them for farming. A man in this situation was known as "A Cockatoo". When the Clark boys took possession of their land, William Hughes, now being homeless, bought the property on the other side of Wallworkts.
John and Alice had seven children, John Herbert, born 1900, being the youngest. All grew up on the farm. John (Jack) married Muriel Lee on 25 March 1925, having built a house across the road from his parents prior to his wedding. Exactly 25 years later, their only son Douglas married Ruby Davis. Thus both generations-celebrated their golden and silver wedding anniversaries jointly. Both families moved from the farms into new homes at Red Hill, South Arm, in 1979. Mrs Muriel Kearns had a serious accident and died peacefully on 16 December 1982. She is buried at Ulmarra. A gracious lady, loved by all, and sadly missed. Vale.
Jack Kearns has many memories of the early years. Here are two cricketing stories. In the 1920's Artie Davis, whilst batting for Brushgrove, hit a ball over the pavilion , at that time on the Clarence St side, across the Road and into George Llewellyn’s garden. A mighty hit. The following Season, one of the Clark brothers lofted a ball from a Vic McClucas delivery into a large gum tree on the far side of the Oval, where it remained for years, until George Yager, whilst mowing, found it on the ground.
In 1912 a lady was hurrying to catch the punt at Brushgrove, wheeling a baby in a pram, and carrying her handbag. As the ferry approached the slip, she lost hold of the pram and handbag, which fell into the river. Three young boys, Syd Henderson, Clarrie Eather and Cecil Sutherland, dived into the water, rescuing baby, pram and handbag, swimming under the wharf as the ferry docked. They climbed out, and returned baby and possessions to the distraught mother. The baby did not appear to be hurt, and the episode ended happily.
Mr Kearns recalls the showing of silent movies at the School of Arts. Mrs George Henderson played the piano for the Picture Shows. In the early 30's, Keevers Talking Pictures replaced the Silents.
Jack remembers the New Zealand boats which came to Brushgrove to load timber. The stones they carried as ballast on the trip across the Tasman, were unloaded beside the wharf, to be used by the Shire. Some can still be seen today,
In the early 1900's Claude Roach and Percy Hooker were going to a dance at Harwood in their Sulky. When they reached Kearns property they swapped their horse, (now in poor condition) for one of his (unknown to J. A. K.). Coming home in the early hours of the morning they returned Kearns' horse to its paddock, harnessing up their own. Jack found his horse in a lather of sweat when he went to milk, and guessed who were the culprits.
In 1908 William Hughes started a Sunday School on his property. Jack Kearns and his brothers attended, until it closed in 1914. In 1920 Fred Kearns wife, Vida, approached Grandmother Hughes for permission, and opened a Sunday School on the Kearns front verandah, which ran for 50 years. Vida was a born leader and soon 30 children attended. A piano in the lounge room was used, as french doors opened onto the verandah. Day's wife, Hilda, took over as a superintendent when Vida moved to Maclean, running it for 8 years, then Jack's wife, Muriel, continued on. Ruby, Muriel’s daughter-in-law, ran the Sunday School until it closed in 1965. In the fifty years of its life there were only 4 superintendents, each named Kearns. Many adults living in Brushgrove today remember the Kearns Sunday School.
( We thank Jack Kearns for all his help and information on the Kearns family.)
THE SHORT FAMILY
ERNIE SHORT’S MEMORIES
J. Short in 1900 built a slaughter yard on the comer of Donaldson Street in Brushgrove and killed an average of 24 bullocks a week. The majority being shipped to Sydney Markets, the quarters were put into calico bags made by Mrs Short and the rest of the meat was salted and sold around the island by Mr Short using a spring cart for his delivery service.
In 1904 he built a butcher's shop and an adjoining residence. Lit by carbide lamps and using carbide for refrigeration, this shop was considered to be the most up to date outside the city. His slaughterman was Ted Inman, previously employed at Ramornie Station, who could take off a bullock’s hide in the twinkling of an eye and in speed to dress a bullock was only surpassed by Jack Slack, who once completed the whole of the operation in 3'/2 minutes.
The Bridge refrigeration plant was powered by a Tangye engine. All types of small goods, bacon, spiced meats and hams were produced. Mr J. Short purchased the famous corned beef recipe from Ramornie Station for f 25. The resultant corned beef was sold in 100 lb lots locally and sent by ship to Sydney in one ton lots. When the rail link to South Grafton was completed the shipping of meat ceased. Mr Short later built a boat to convey his own meat to Sydney. Ernie Short, a son, worked for his father in the butcher shop until it was sold to Mr Stone.
His memories of these years are many and varied. As a small boy he helped to catch the "Chooks" from the Co-op at Hendersons to be loaded on Sydney bound ships. Henderson's employed 16 people.
As a young man around 1920 he was the proud owner of a Harley Davidson motor cycle and vividly remembers the Gas Light Handicap Races held on the Triangle. The tracks were roped off and lit by carbide lamps. Many good runners came from far and wide to compete for the money prizes. The starter was Mr Daley who owned a gun and between the races Tug"of-War events were held.
In later years the Triangle was leased by Mr Russell and corn and other crops were grown there. Now it lies unused.
Brushgrove did not have a fire brigade and over the years houses owned by Mr McNally on River Street, and Mr Tom McMahon on Clarence Street were burnt down, as was Harrison's Store and Mr Short’s ]Butcher Shop. Mr Jack Kearns remembers being in Church with his parents when Harrison's burnt. Everyone ran from Church with buckets of water and tried unsuccessfully to put out the blaze. Later re-built it became Peter Sandilands Confectionery and Ice-Cream Shop.
The villagers could buy all their requirements locally, although sometimes when bad weather held up the supply boats from Sydney, food ran low. Ensby's Store in Woodford Street sold Drapery and Groceries using a horse drawn spring cart for deliveries around the island.
Henderson's Store in River Street indented their goods direct from England and Europe. The cargo arrived by ship in iron tanks which were later sold to farmers.
Mr Short lives at Tucabia with his daughter and family. Now in his 80's he paints pictures (the Pullen River Boats are his favourite subject), turns local timber on his lathe, producing beautiful bowls etc., and makes and repairs furniture. Never an idle moment.
(Mr Ernie Short has been of invaluable help to us in our research and we give him our thanks for the information supplied.)
THE ARCHER FAMILY
The Archers , David and Margaret lived on Roberts Creek Road, Woodford Island, and reared a family of 13 children. One of the sons Sid married Leila Davis and they lived on the property until coming to Brushgrove 29 years ago, buying the house and lands on which William Kearns had lived. Sid died 10 years ago and Leila continues to reside in Clarence Street being well-known for her gardening talent. Sid's brother David started as a butcher in Brushgrove but moved to Lawrence 70 years ago where he ran a successful butchery business with his three sons. They finally closed the business in 1979. During this time they continued to serve Brushgrove residents. Donald (Blue) Archer said his father did the Brushgrove run until his retirement and the villagers here still remember the Archers bringing supplies over by boat during flood times.
THE CARR FAMILY
Harold (Sam) Carr was born in 1905, the second eldest of 9 sons and daughters born to Keir (Tim) and Bertha Carr. The family lived on a farm on South Arm three miles from the Post Office. Sam attended school at-Cowper and Grafton High. In 1924 he married Sara Bancroft and had four children Noel, Ron, June and Neville, all were born whilst living on the farm. After Sam's parents died the farm was sold and he moved to Brushgrove, living in a house opposite the Hotel. From there they moved to Donaldson Street and finally to Clarence Street to the property where son Neville lives today.
Sam was a member of the Ulmarra V. D.C. (Volunteer Defence Corps) and attended various camps. Whilst with the V. D.C. at Digger's Camp he killed a 27 inch death adder which he bottled. He joined the Army in 1939 and served in New Guinea and other theatres of war. In 1978 Sam was made a life member of the R. S.L. in recognition of work well done over the years. Sam was a great community worker, serving on the Committee of the. War Memorial Hall, gave much of his time to Legacy and the R. S.L. and was a keen bowler.
He loved sport of all kinds and will be best remembered by the younger folk as "Patch-em-Sam". This came about through the Mini League football of which he was an ardent supporter, and was the honorary first-aid man. Grafton Police, through Barry Faint presented to the Football Club the first-aid kit, large enough for Sam to use as a seat and almost bigger than him. The team gave him a T-Shirt with Sir Sam Patch’em emblazoned across the chest. The first Back-to-Brushgrove Sports Day saw Sam in all his glory, garbed in red striped money apron (smoking - which was a no no) selling tickets and renewing friendships.
Whilst crossing the Pacific Highway, near Coomboy Stud in 1978 he was hit by a passing car. The injuries he sustained included a broken foot, knee and arm. After being hospitalised in Concord he returned home living with his daughter June Hunter and he died on lst December, 1981. He was affectionally known to all Brushgrove residents as Pop Sam and will never be forgotten.
Whilst living on the farm Sam’s children attended the Kearns Sunday School, which had a yearly picnic for the children held under the huge Moreton Bay Fig Tree on the property. The Carrs, Ensbeys and Kearns families often got together at a weekend for a sing-song around the piano.
Thomas Foggo was born in Scotland in 1847, but we do not know when he came to Australia. He married Mary Worrell of Brushgrove, whose late husband was the first Licensee of the Hotel. Thomas took up land in Brushgrove and was the Publican from 1888. He was a builder of both boats and houses, and it is believed he built the first Brushgrove-Cowper Ferry. Many of his descendants still live in the area.
THE ENSBEY FAMILY
The Ensbey’s emigrated from England and settled on a farm at They raised a large family and two of the sons, Arthur and Alf, realising the farm could not support them all, came to Brushgrove and bought a property between them on South Arm. Both married and had large families. Arthur and his wife had 9 children, Fred, Edgar, Dick and six daughters. Alf and his wife had 10 children. Through marriage the Ensbey's are related to the Hughes, Kearns, Eggins and Yagers. The three boys ran the property after Arthur died. Dick, a bachelors died in 1983, Fred married Beryl Daley and had two sons and a daughter, and died in 1984, Edgar married Elsie Hughes and has four daughters. Today Edgar still farms the joint family property and Beryl lives in the second house.
Edgar has many memories of the early days, shared with Jack Kearns and Ernie Short. As Edgar says, in his childhood children were seen and not heard. Parents were strict but kind. Edgar had a mop of almost white curls and when they were cut his mother put some in a sealed bottle. Unfortunately no-one knows where it is. We would like to have had it for our exhibition.
J. J. HOUGH
John Joseph Hough born 1851, Licensee of the Brushgrove Hotel in 1898 was a talented man. He was a self taught Vet. and his knowledge and services were in great demand. Married to Henrietta Cowper they raised a large family. Prior to coming to Brushgrove he had been a hotel-keeper in Ulmarra and was involved in the formation of the Dairy Company serving as a Director for several years. He was a shipwright, a builder and a drover. At one time there was a flight of steps from the riverbank up to the Hotel and John Joseph rode his horse up these for a wager. His youngest son was a sickly child and to keep him amused one day Mr Hough sat him on the bar counter whilst he worked. The child is reported to have said "Dad, if I die will the Gaslight Races still continue?". The family left the Village moving first to Lawrence, then Maclean. John Joseph died in 1914 in Mackay at the home of a nephew.
Garney, the son of Ted Inman, Slaughterman at Short’s Butchery was born and bred in Brushgrove in a house on the southern point of the Island. As a young man, Garney made the deliveries for Morgan's using a spring cart. He then did the cream collection and relieved his brother the ferryman. At a later date Garney took over the ferryman's job. People still remember that Garney would run the ferry if required at any time of the night. He slept on board and the traveler had to shake the steel rope, hitting the side of the ferry to wake Garney. He was a keen sportsman, but is remembered best as a cricketer, being a valuable member of the successful cricket team in the late 30's as a left hand trundler bowler. Most Brushgrove children at that time were taught to swim by Garney and had a great affection for him. Garney now lives in retirement at Ulmarra.
William Hughes came from England as a small boy and his family settled on the Hunter River before moving to the Clarence. He married Mary Elizabeth Farlow and farmed a property on South Arm, later building a house on Clarence Street near Plummer’s Shop. They raised a family of 8, William, Fred, George, Harry, Emily, Alice, Lucy and Elizabeth. All were staunch workers for the Methodist Church and in May 1946 at the Methodist Quarterly Meeting special mention was made of the Hughes family. The girls went by boat to Grafton for Music Lessons and Elizabeth played the organ at the Church for many years, later at Presbyterian Church at Cowper. Her son, Howard Connor now follows in her footsteps.
Mrs William Hughes died in middle age and William moved from daughter to daughter, always helping around the farms. His favourite tool was a hoe and even on the hottest summer day he would be chipping away with it. George, aged 95 lives with his daughter, Mrs Una Yager in Brushgrove, Alice (Clark) aged 94 lives in Tamworth and Elizabeth (Connor) aged 92, lives with her son Dudley in Cowper.
McLACHLAN FAMILY AND MEMORIES
Clarence (Clarrie) McLachlan and family came to Brushgrove in 1934. Working for the Dept. Main Roads he rode many miles on his bicycle with his pick and shovel tied to the handle bars. After his retirement at 65 he worked at Harwood Sugar Mill. He was a water diviner and many people used his skill.
There were 13 children, Gordon and Jack had the hairdressing shop and worked long hours, Clarrie helped out at weekends sharpening scissors. Later Gordon and Jack went to Grafton to work for their Uncle Gordon, to whom Lyle was apprenticed. Lyle, whilst going to school had three toes cut off on the punt wheel. Mary and Alice worked at the Hotel, and also at McDowells Brushgrove Bakery. Helen and Jean worked in Maclean. Edna and Dorothy both worked at Brushgrove Telephone Exchange at different times.
Melba was employed as a domestic help in Morgan's Store home and at busy times helped out in the shop. Ray worked at Morgan’s Store as an order boy driving a horse and sulky around outlying areas collecting and delivering orders. Later he worked for Peter's Ice Cream at Southgate and Grafton.
Their memories of those years include the exciting times at Xmas. All the Village children decorated a Xmas Tree provided by Mr Morgan, who placed a present for each child on the tree, every customer on paying an account received a packet of lollies. More than 200 people thronged the streets, the shops staying open late and the evening ended with fireworks provided by Mr Morgan.
On Cracker Night families took their Crackers to land adjacent to Morgan’s Store and the whole village combined with Mr Morgan who provided larger fireworks. A wonderful evening.
When the trading boats came to the wharf the local children helped pack eggs in crates and catch live "chooks" from the pen, ready to be loaded for the Sydney Markets. The reward for each child being a boiled lolly.
Ernie Paine ran an unofficial taxi service, which was often used in case of sickness or accident to convey the patient to hospital and also conveyed the sporting teams around the district.
Amongst celebrities visiting Brushgrove were Tex Morton and sister Dorrie, who entertained the locals with singing and shooting. The Camel man visited and gave rides for 6d around the Triangle. From 1910 onwards Circuses visited the area, usually setting up on the Common.
Pullen's boats had "A Dancing Evening". They left Grafton and called at Brushgrove where quite a few disembarked and headed for the Hotel. There was always a rush to catch the last boat home.
Ray and his family still live in Brushgrove.
THE YAGER FAMILY
We traced the Yager family back to 1888 when Arthur Claude Yager was born in Brushgrove, one of 8 children. Arthur married Annie Phelps and set up home in the vicinity of the Village, with dairying and cane. His only surviving brother, Hunter, lives in the Nursing Home in Maclean. Arthur and Annie had three daughters, Daphne, Merle and Marjorie. Arthur's cousin George Ernest was born in Brushgrove and married Lily Jayne Blanch. He started the first livestock carrying business on the Clarence using horse drawn vehicles and ran a livery stable in Clarence Street, Brushgrove, and from 1936 used trucks. George and Lily had four sons, Tommy, twins Len and Lionel, and John. All four sons worked in their father's business during the horse drawn days. They carted produce to local businesses from the river boats.
John married Lilian Ensbey in 1933 at St. Johns in Brushgrove. For a while they lived with his parents, Lil often looking after 6 men in the house. They had four daughters and were great friends with the George Munns family. At one time the young Yagers with the five girls shared a house belonging to Sweeney, with George Munns, his wife and their five girls.
John was a man of many parts. He worked on the Wingfield Bridge as a Bank-Man during its construction, on a dredge, and drove the bread delivery van for Mundy Moran. In earlier days he delivered mail from Brushgrove Post Office to outlying areas, operated a timber jinker drawn by five horses controlled by John on another horse. The family was on the same block of land from 1890 until April 1983. Lil Yager was one of the earliest women to hold Class Drivers Licence and to drive livestock trucks. Lil remembers the tennis competitions held on the many courts of Brushgove including one on the Yager property and the dances held in the School of Arts, when parents bedded the children down in the supper room. Mr Rankin, the Postmaster from 1904, had the first cylinder gramophone in the Village. On receiving a new record from Sydney, he would phone his telephone subscribers, name a time, throw all the switches and play the record to them.
John and Lil moved to Grafton in 1983, celebrating their Golden Wedding in the same year. John has since died and Lil continues to live in Morrison Street, playing bowls and enjoying the visits of her five daughters, thirteen grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Hugh Munro, born 1840, on the Isle of Skye, Scotland, came to Australia in 1852 with his parents, sisters and brothers. He married in 1874 Julia Campbell who was born on the Clarence. They reared a family of 10 children on Woodford Island. Charles Sydney Munro, born 1877, (one of the boys) married Eliza Emily Yager. They had four children, Lyla married H. McSwan, Elva, Glen married Hazel. Phelps and Hilda married Harry Henderson. Syd, as he was known, worked for Hendersons and Ensbey's Stores before opening his own shop in Clarence Street in the late 1920's. A mixed store it became a popular meeting place. He moved to Grafton after 8 or 10 years and his daughter Lyla and her husband Hugh McSwan took over the Store. Hugh died in the early 1950's and the premises were bought by Mrs Reeves. Syd's son Glen started a hairdressers shop and billiard saloon in 1926, which he ran for 10 years before moving to Taree. Glen and his wife Hazel now live in Grafton and have three children, Terry, Dawn and Garry, 9 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren.
George Saxby Munns (the Earl of Saxby) lived at Eatonsville raising a family of 8 children. A daughter Jessie married William Russell the Licensee of the Brushgrove Hotel. This couple had one daughter, Doreen, and also raised George Munns, a nephew. George was one of three brothers, the other two being Ventry and Ashley who made Brushgrove their second home. George Munns farmed for awhile on the South Arm later moving to Sydney where he died in 1983. Many of the Munns girls from Eatonsville came to help Jessie in the Hotel and some married local boys.