Mackereth Cottage  
 
Mackereth Cottage in winter morning light. The cottage is situated beside Scott creek and was built in 1838. It's a powerful reminder of what early years in the colony were like for most settlers. Photo : Frank Copley
 
 
 

What follows are extracts from the book "Scott Creek : From Settlement to Conservation" by Marie Steiner,  which is available from the Friends Of Scott Creek

"George Mackereth, a farmer from Westmoreland, England, arrived in the colony in January 1838 aboard the barque Royal Admiral. On the voyage he met his future wife, Sarah O'Brien, of London, who was also coming out on a free passage - I would suggest with some courage and optimism. Recorded as a servant, aged 19, her descendants believe she was hoping to join her brother, who had traveled out on an earlier ship. Family tradition indicates that he was an artist, using a nom-de-plume, who had been engaged by a member of the South Australian Company to illustrate the beauties of the colony to entice prospective immigrants...

(Sarah) had certainly not arrived in fortuitous circumstances. She was an illiterate unmarried young woman without any family support, living in a tiny-tented village, in an unknown landscape - not the most desirous situation.... It is not surprising, therefore, that Sarah married George not long after they had landed, in 1838, in the newly built Holy Trinity Church on North Terrace. They honeymooned for two weeks in the Sawyers Arms Hotel - later to become the Norfolk Arms, the Forester's Arms and then the Crafers Inn....

George and Sarah settled in a forested valley, near a creek aborigines called Wedenunga (Scott) Creek, where there was a permanent spring, and built a small wood and stone cottage, which has been renovated and is now managed by the National Trust.... (George) sold by barter pears, mulberries and vegetables in exchange for an axe, a shovel and linen goods. It is said that an apple tree and the surviving pear tree had been purchased at the Cape of Good Hope, on the journey out."

 

160 year old pear tree
George Mackereth's enormous pear tree, which is now over 160 years old and, as you can see from the inset, still still bears fruit prolifically.
Photo : Les Peters
The cottage on a summer evening
Mackereth Cottage, on a summer evening.
Photo
: Les Peters
  Front of Mackereth Cottage

Mackereth Cottage in Spring Photo : Frank Copley

 

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