|1. Augusta Maria Mitchell, b. 1834||See Edward Christopher Merryweather & Augusta Maria Mitchell|
|2. David Scot Mitchell, b. abt. 1820|
IN the year 1835, just a hundred years ago, Dr. James Mitchell made
application for the purchase of a block of land which fifty years later
became the principal part of the Merewether Municipality.
Just a century ago, when the hills and slopes to the south and south-west
of the City of Newcastle were thickly timbered with various kinds of gum
and oak trees; when the flats were covered with dense scrub, consisting
of ti-tree, geebung, and five-corner shrubs, with. an undergrowth of
coarse bracken, when the area from the Bar Beach to the present
Merewether Beach tram terminus, and for a considerable distance from the
water's edge, was a sandy desert; this advertisement appeared in the New
South Wales Government Gazette of Wednesday, July 29, 1835 :- Colonial
Secretary's Office, Sydney, 30th June, 1835.
SALE OF LAND.
42. Northumberland, 900, nine hundred acres, more or less, near the town
of Newcastle; bounded on the east by land of A. W. Scott, Esq.; on the
north by the Australian Agricultural Company's Grant of 2000 acres, about
seventy chains on the west by the Government; and on the south by the
ocean and salt water lake. Applied for by James Mitchell.
By His Excellency's Command. ALEXANDER M'LEAY
This block was secured by Dr. Mitchell, and was added to later by the
land of A. W. Scott (456 acres) on the east; a further purchase in 1849
of 414 acres on the west, and another purchase of 100 acres to the north
of the 414 acre block. The Municipality of Merewether is carved out of
these blocks. The Glebeland, which is within the boundaries of the 900
acre block mentioned in the notice of, sale, contains 35 acres, and is
also included in the municipal area.
A large portion of the 900 acre, and 414 acre blocks is in the Lake
Macquarie Shire, to the south and west of Merewether; whilst a part of
the 456 acres, of the original A. W. Scott grant; bounded by Rues Street,
Kilgour Avenue, and Bar Beach Avenue and the ocean, is within the City of
The salt water take mentioned in-, the Gazette Notice is the lagoon, the
well-known swimming pool a mile and a half south-west from the Merewether
Beach tram terminus. The area was named "Burwood Estate."
Dr. James Mitchell, the original owner of the Burwood Estate (now known
as the Merewether Estate), was born in Fifeshire, Scotland, in 1792, and
was educated for his profession in Edinburgh and London. On June 22,
1820, he was appointed assistant surgeon of the 48th Regiment, stationed
in New South Wales.
In 1836 he purchased the first block of his great holding in this
district. In the early forties a great deal of coal mining was carried on
in the upper, or Burwood Seam on his land by various lessees.
In 1853 the Coal and Copper Company was formed, and up till 1862, when
this company ceased operations, 1,334,500 tons of coal had been wrought
from the hills, principally within the present municipal area.
Dr. Mitchell died on February 1, 1869. A large portrait, painted by
Marshall Claxton in oils, in 1854, hangs in the Merewether Estate Office,
source:=History of Merewether, By Jonathon Dixon, Published by Merewether
Other information on the Mitchell family from Iain Sommerville
Burntisland, Fife, Scotland
Burntisland web site: www.fife40.freeserve.co.uk/burntisland
founded the Mitchell Library in Sydney, Australia, was a son of Dr.