From Edward Hewitson born 1794 in Kirk Linton, U.K.

Hewitson Family Tree

Richardson / Liddell / Calvert / Hewitson family connection. John Victor Richardson (Jack) born 1887 Lucknow Victoria, at Nicholson in 1922 married Sarah Ann Liddell (Annie) born 1896 in Bairnsdale. Annie's father was William Coulson Calvert Liddell, born in 1875 at Scarsdale near Ballarat, to Joseph Liddell and Mary Calvert. Mary Calvert's oldest brother was William Calvert who married Catherine Hewitson.


A few quite early records have been located relating to Edward Hewitson from Kirk Linton, and his wife Sarah Little who was born and baptised at Alston, as presented in chronological order.

Baptism of Sarah Little from Alston in 1801.

Marriage Record of Edward Hewitson and Sarah Little in 1822.

Edward Hewitson and Sarah Little timeline

Death record of Sarah Hewitson nee Little of 1835 at Kirk Linton.


Edward and Sarah Hewitson of Kirk Linton had 5 children there, being -

Mary Hewitson born 1822 in Cumberland.
John Hewitson born at Kirk Linton in 1825.
Catherine Hewitson born at Kirk Linton in 1827.
Sarah Hewitson born in 1829 at Kirk Linton.
Jane Hewitson born in 1833 at Kirk Linton.

1841 Census record of Edward Hewitson and his 5 children at Kirk Linton.

Early U.K. Census records denote Edward Hewitson living at Kirk Linton in north Cumberland, supporting his family by working as a Sailor. Edward's wife Sarah Hewitson nee Little died on 10th May 1835 at Kirk Linton when the children were still quite young, who were obviously totally dependant on their father Edward.

Our policy is to actually explore those who emigrated to Australia, being siblings John and Catherine Hewitson is outlined below, however, should you wish to look into the rest of this Hewitson family, please review here.


Family Crests for Calvert and Hewitson.
(unable to locate crest example for Little)

Catherine Hewitson was the third of five children born in 1827 at Kirk Linton to Edward Hewitson and Sarah Little, and Catherine's only other sibling to come to the Victorian Gold Rush was her elder brother John Hewitson, who is mentioned further below. In 1849 at Gretna, Dumfries Shire in Scotland, Catherine Hewitson married William Calvert who was born in 1824 at Kirk Haugh. Records imply they may have had a daughter who died in infancy the year they married. However the Calverts did have a son they named William Hewitson Calvert, who was born on 22nd July 1850 at Allendale, and survived the voyage to Australia, to tell the very interesting following story, post humously as a tribute to his parents.


Birth certificate of son William Hewitson Calvert of 1850 at Dryburn Allendale - Courtesy Jeff Butler

Regarding the emigration of this family, the story goes that Catherine's husband William Calvert and his brother John Russell Calvert, were both Lead Ore Miners, and they were well informed of the Gold Rushes in California USA and Victoria Australia - and they chose Australia as the place to become "Diggers". Relatively shortly after they both married and had both their first child, Catherine's husband William Calvert and his brother John Russell Calvert, booked their passage together on board the Ann Dashwood from Liverpool, bound for Hobsons Bay, the main port of Melbourne.

Brothers William and John Russell Calvert on board the Ann Dashwood in 1853, bound for Australia.

Painting of the Ann Dashwood - Courtesy Ref Mc Menamin.

We are not certain exactly how William Calvert got word to his wife back home in England, but very late in 1854 he did get the news through for Catherine to come and bring their young son William Hewitson Calvert with her to Australia. She booked what turned out to be a 3 month voyage on the Red Jacket in 1855, arriving in Melbourne on the 25th of Mar.

Emigration record of Catherine Calvert nee Hewitson and son William Hewitson Calvert on the Red Jacket in 1855.

The Red Jacket - Courtesy Texas Tech University.

For a detailed overview about this Calvert family, their numerous Gold Mining ventures and property investments, William's time as a Bairnsdale Shire President and Councillor, Justice of the Peace etc., please click here.

However, we strongly recommend review of the following excellent account of William and Catherine's lives, work, and movements (even the Eureka Stockade) in Victoria and New South Wales, as per a newspaper publication by Catherine's son William Hewitson Calvert, written shortly after her death. Unfortunately, a typical sign of the times, there are very few records or historical information relating directly to Catherine Calvert nee Hewitson, not even a mention of her as "Mrs William Calvert" in a newspaper cutting.

Extract of article from the Nepean Times of 13 Dec 1919 - a tribute to William and Catherine Calvert nee Hewitson.

A couple of weeks ago we reported the death of Mrs. Catherine Calvert, of Orchard Hills, whose husband (Mr. William Calvert) predeceased her 24 years. We are indebted to Mr. William {Hewitson} Calvert, of Orchard Hills, the only son of deceased, for the following interesting particulars respecting his late parents:

Portrait by photographer F. Howe of William Hewitson Calvert about 1900 at Forbes, NSW - Author of following the tribute.

"My father, William Calvert, and his brother John arrived in Melbourne in, 1853. On their way to Ballarat gold fields they did a few weeks' harvesting at Moonee' Ponds for Mclntosh Bros., as the wages wore good — 30/- a day and 'tucker' — and it was difficult to get men at that. Hay was worth £40 per ton.

They were at the Eureka 'riot', so miscalled, as the 'diggers' were persecuted and forced to rise and protest against the treatment they received from the police and Government officials. For example, the sinking on, the gravel pits flat of Eureka was very wet. A policeman would come along frequently and demand to see a 'digger's mining rights. Perhaps it was in his tent, fifty yards away; but he was not allowed to go to get it. The policeman would then take him away to Camp Hill and chain him to a stump or log, sometimes all night, as there was no gaol. Then the 'digger' would be brought before the Magistrate and fined for not having a miner's right on him. Captain Wise, who was in charge of soldiers from Melbourne, was astonished when he heard the diggers' cause after the stockade incident, and said he had no idea the men were so persecuted.
Nuff sed!

On March 25th 1855, my mother {Catherine Calvert nee Hewitson}, and I arrived in Melbourne, per 'Red Jacket' after a voyage of three months from Liverpool, accompanied by some neighbours from Northumberland, Éngland. My father met us in Melbourne, and then started for Ballarat in a covered-in cart containing goods and chattels. Other carts were on the same track, and they travelled and camped together, as there were bush-rangers about in those days, and the men watched turn about throughout the night, with guns ready. One night they sighted a man prowling about, so they promptly challenged him and made him a prisoner, as he would not give any account of himself. After daylight they gave him some breakfast and told him to go. No doubt he was acting as a spy.

Father followed mining at Ballarat and Smythesdale for some years, then he and his brother selected land at Bairnsdale, Gippsland, in 1862. His brother looked after the fencing-in of the land selected. Then we all went to Bairnsdale in I866, and started farming and fattening cattle. Father {William Calvert Snr}, Uncle {John Russell Calvert}, Cousin {William Coulson Calvert} and I took a mob of 'fats' to Melbourne in 1868. In 1870 we had big floods which destroyed a lot of wheat, oats, and barley, and took the thrashing machine and winnower three miles down the river. But we recovered them again. They had over one thousand bushels thrashed out and cleaned, and, a lot more in stacks, which floated away and went to pieces.

My father was a councillor in the Bairnsdale shire for a number of years, and did his term as president. In 1871 we started to breed remounts for India. In 1885 we sold out in Gippsland, as I suffered from asthma and bronchitis, and came to Forbes. We were just stocked upon the Lachlan when the big drought of 1889-0 set in, and we had to clear the stock off again and sell the station. Then we tried a place near Molong, but it was no good for sheep. Then we tried North Bangaroo for three years. Eventually we returned to Forbes, and tried wheat growing, but it was no good; all we could get for good milling wheat at Forbes in 1901 was 1/10 to 2/1 per bushel.

A co-operative butter factory started in Forbes, and was all right for a time. We had thirty cows, but then it came in dry, and the factory closed down for want of suppliers. So I sold out and brought my cows to Orchard Hills; but tho drought of 1902 came on before I had time to grow fodder, and buying soon knocked a hole in my drum, so I gave up dairying, and now my sons and I grow peas and fruit.

My father died at North Bangaroo on December 24th, 1895, aged 72, and was interred in Nyrang Creek cemetery. His brother John is still alive in Gippsland, and is about 88 years old. But his memory is gone; he knows nobody. My mother had been with us through all the changes, and is now resting from her labors."


The only other records located about Catherine Calvert nee Hewitson are related to her passing away on the 22nd Nov 1919 at Orchard Hill near Penrith in New South Wales.

Headstone of Catherine Calvert nee Hewitson - Courtesy Jeff Butler per

Death Certificate of Catherine Calvert nee Hewitson of 1919, when she died at Orchard Hills Penrith, New South Wales.


Catherine Hewitson's only brother John Hewitson, and his wife Mary Ann Forrester came to Victoria in the mid 1850s, and spent about 15 years in total on the Gold Fields near Ballarat and had 4 children there, however were the only ones of all our 25 family emigrants who actually returned to England, estimated to be somewhere around 1868-9.

Marriage records of John Hewitson and Mary Ann Forrester, number 10a495 at South Shields Durham U.K. early in 1857.

It's highly likely that John Hewitson had some direct family news from the Victorian Gold Fields near Ballarat, as to the potential earnings from Gold mining there, if he and his family, made such a move to become a Digger on the Victorian gold fields. Naturally this golden opportunity made lots of sense to John Hewitson at that time as he booked a long sea voyage on board the Carleton to Geelong in Victoria at that time in 1857.

Original hand written record of John Hewitson, noted as a labourer, and his wife Mary Ann Hewitson also from Northumberland, onboard the Carleton in 1857.

The S.S. Carleton as pictured in 1881.


It appears John Hewitson and Mary Ann Forrester began building their family, shortly after their arrival in Victoria Australia in 1857. Births of their children are as follows -

Edward Forrester Hewitson born at Smythes Creek Victoria in 1857.
John Hewitson was born in 1858 at Warrenheip Victoria and died back in Haltwhistle UK. in 1889 aged 31.
Thomas Hewitson born and died as an infant at Smythes Creek Victoria in 1859.
Sarah Ann Hewitson was born and died as an infant at Smythesdale Victoria in 1860.

Records have not been found as to exactly when John and Mary Ann Hewitson actually returned to England, but it seems it was probably in the mid to late 1860s, as their next child Ann Broomwell Hewitson was born back in Hexham U.K. in 1870. It's quite saddening that John and Mary Ann Hewitson lost 3 of their children during infancy, which may have been a major factor in their decision to return home to the Hexham region of Northumberland in northern England.

Ann Broomwell Hewitson was born in 1870 registered at Hexham Northumberland and died there aged 8.
Emma Hewitson was born in 1873 at Hexham Northumberland.

It seems John Hewitson was a very adaptable person, and quite learned in a wide array of mining applications and affairs. John Hewitson definitely displayed a variety of mining skills and knowledge, as outlined in the following newspaper references, of him occupying such positions as Gold Mine Secretary, Gold Mine Manager, major Mining Shareholder, and an experienced Gold Mine advisor.

John Hewitson - Mine Secretary of the Durham Gold Mining company at Swamp Lead in 1860.

John Hewitson, Mine Secretary of the Morning Star Mine at Yandoit, 65 kilometres north of Ballarat, in Apr 1861.

The year of 1861 was a good one for John Hewitson in his Gold Mining ventures, as he was promoted to Mine Manager of the Morning Star Quartz Mine at Yandoit, in that year.

John Hewitson acknowledged as Mine manager at Yandoit in 1861.

It is not possible to ascertain John Hewitson's Tender details with the Ballarat council in the same year of 1861, yet the newspaper article indicates he was paid the sum of £17 by the Ballarat Shire for his supply of good and services.

Approved Tender of payment to John Hewitson by the Ballarat Shire in 1861.

As with other fellow family investors, John Liddell, William Calvert, and Thomas Broadwood, John Hewitson's investments into The Try Again Gold Mining Company at Piggoreet / Devils Kitchen south west of Ballarat ended up proving to pay great dividends to all its earlier Shareholders in 1862.

Share listing of the Try Again Gold Mine at Piggoreet from Nov 1862, as held by other immediate family members, being William Calvert, John Liddell, John Hewitson, and Thomas Broadwood.

For extensive details of life on the Ballarat Gold fields and our family involvement in the Try Again Gold Mine at Piggoreet,
please click here.

In the year 1862 in particular, our John Hewitson appears to have had a very diverse array of interests on the Ballarat Gold Fields, as indicated above. From this point in time, the trail of references comes to a sudden stop. There have been no records of land titles purchased by John around this time frame, either in the Ballarat or East Gippsland regions, and its likely he did very well financially on the Gold Fields.

Incoming UK passenger lists pre 1878 are difficult to procure, so all we have to confirm this Hewitson family returned to England, is the Census notations. The U.K. Census of 1871 indicates he was a "Land owner / farmer" at Hexham having what looks like 48 acres.

1871 Census listing John and Mary Ann, Edward born in Australia, and baby Annie Broomwell Hewitson only 5 months old.

The following Census 10 years later (displayed in two parts) shows they had had another daughter Emma aged 8, John had increased his acreage to 91 acres, and employed on a female House Servant, plus a 21 year old man and a 16 year old boy.

Obviously eldest son Edward Forrester Hewitson was not at home with his parents in 1881. Four years later he married Mary Stewart at Ovingham in Northumberland, and they proceeded to have 14 children. Mary Ann Hewitson nee Forrester passed away at Hexham in the same year of this Census, and no record of John Hewitson's death has been located to date.

Back to Site Index.

Background into Lead Ore Mining in Northern U.K.

Background into the Gold Rush days near Ballarat Victoria.

From Joseph Richardson born 1721 at Alston, U.K.

From John Armstrong born in 1705, Haltwhistle U.K.

From Thomas Bell born 1806 of Allendale, U.K.

From James Broadwood born 1796 of Northumberland, U.K.

From William Calvert born 1791 at Kirkhaugh, U.K.

From John Clementson born 1692 in Garrigill, U.K.

From Robert Cochrane born 1778 in Eglington, U.K.

From William Coulson born 1760 in Cumberland, U.K.

From Edward Hewitson born 1794 in Kirk Linton, U.K.

From John Liddell born circa 1780 in Ninebanks, U.K.

From Joseph Parker born 1810 at Allendale, U.K.

From Nicholas Vipond born 1655 in Alston, U.K.

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