History: Stories from the Burgess Family

Burgess family home.
Burgess family home.
Part 1 of 2

Thomas Chesworth Burgess was born in 1835 at Lymm, Cheshire, England; he married Jane Gilbert on 14 January 1865 in the Parish of West Derby, Lancaster.  

In an 1861 census the family is recorded as Inn Keepers.  

Thomas and his brother Henry received an inheritance from their father of £100 (pounds) every three months.  On arrival in Queensland Thomas and Jane applied for 160 acres on Christmas Creek, Upper Logan.  The Deed of Grant was passed on 6 March 1889.  Clearing, stock yards, cultivation and erection of fences and buildings cost £132 / 1 / 9d.  The farm was called ‘Foxley’.

Eight children were born to Thomas and Jane between 1865 and 1883.  One child died aged three months. 

Charles Burgess, 32 years, enlisted in 1915. He served in the Gallipoli Expeditionary Force until 1916.  He joined the British Expeditionary Force to France and rejoined the second Pioneer Battalion.  He was wounded in action, returned to Australia and discharged on 13 August 1917.

He returned home again with many of the problems that soldiers return with today.  Shell-shock and undefined physiological trauma, a need for an income, somewhere to live, and most importantly a life that is meaningful.  He was without financial support until a newspaper, Smiths Weekly, took up his case and got him the pension he was entitled to.

Mr W Hafemeister of Christmas Creek offered Charlie the use of a cave on his land which Charlie accepted and made his home.

Verney Burgess enlisted in 1916 and was discharged because of family hardship.  He re-enlisted on 13 November 1916 and saw service with Australian based units until 1917 when he embarked in Melbourne for Egypt.

Edward Burgess enlisted 23 June 1916 and was killed in Action 15 October 1917.  

Compiled with permission of Lois Yates.

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Small town newspaper Editor, journo, social media manager and tea lady.