of information -
told me a story
about the life
of an ancestor.
Part of the advertisement read: 'Favoured with instructions from Mrs John Morrison.... the auctioneers will sell the whole of her exceedingly Handsome, modern and substantial furniture and household effects...Dining, Drawing, Breakfast and bedroom suites... Seven grand carpets, all bordered...Magnificent Overmantel and mirrors, Really splendid water colours by Huddlestone, Fletcher Watson and other artists of great ability....two pianofortes... ' On and on went the list of beautiful things that my 2 times great grandparents were forced to part with. 'Expensive jewelery, designed by well known craftsmen, Ladies riding equipment' As I read, I found myself thinking about the great wealth that John Morrison had obviously built up for his family and the even greater loss this family had sustained. I felt the pain of how devastating this tragedy must have been for them as they sold all of their possessions, ' now for sale owing to the terrible losses sustained by Mr John Morrison and family, owing to the cancellation of Government contracts and consequent closing of the carriage-building shops at Strathfield station.'
Queensland newspapers told the next chapter in John Morrison's life, after leaving Sydney, until his death in 1927, however, that tale is for another time. I have now personally seen three of the carriages which my great great great grandfather built. They are housed at the State Rail Musuem at Thirlemere. I have visited many of the buildings which he constructed and felt admiration for this man who I never met, but feel that I know through his wonderful craftsmanship. This story would not have been possible but for the enormous project undertaken by the National Library of Australia in digitalising so many of Australia's leading and regional newspapers.