John William Angell

John William Angell born 1849 in UNLEY, SA - Died 1929 Tibooburra NSW, was our Great Grandfather and we know he left Unley in SA to make a new life in Australia.

The journey he took after leaving Unley in SA has now been shaped as we now know that John headed east from SA to Victoria in search of riches at the Goldfields of Sandhurst, now known as Bendigo. Inspired by the feats of Burke and Wills he decided to follow in their footsteps and head north which took him to Menindee where we have been able to find the first official written records of his presence.

John William travelled by unknown means to NSW and it appears that he was following the Darling river from Menindee up to Wilcannia. His partner, Christina Middleton gave birth to Sarah Jane Middleton in Menindee and they travelled with him to Wilcannia where on 26th June 1878 they married. Sarah Jane was a 2 year old child at the time of the marriage (Sarah Jane Middleton)

During their time in Menindee there was no "officials" who could perform marriages and hence the reason that Sarah Jane was born out of wedlock and was registered under her mother's name. John William Angell is listed on her birth certificate as her father.

The first born to John and Christina after they married was Esther and she was born in Wilcannia in 1879. From this point the next 3 births were all in Wilcannia between 1880 and 1885. Wilcannia was in the Parish of Bourke and hence the births being registered in Bourke. The 5th birth was in Milparinka, just south of Tibooburra in 1888. The last 4 family members were all born in Tibooburra between 1890 and 1897.

Using the above dates it appears that the Angell family took up "permanent" residence in the Tibooburra district around 1890.

How and why they took up residence in Tiboobura is not known but given that the township was founded in 1881 following the discovery of Gold at Mt Brown, it may have been the lure of Gold that attracted them. The fact that the last 4 births were in Tibooburra from 1890 onwards and it was in 1890 that a Hospital was established in the township I would suffest that the reason for making Tibooburra their "home" was due to the medical facilities available thee at the time. Tibooburra was also taking over from Milparinka as the "major" centre in the Corner Country at about the same time.

Given that Broken Hill had opened up in 1883 with the discovery of Silver by Charles Rasp, it is hard to fathom as to why the family headed to Milparinka instead of heading to Broken Hill when they left Wilcannia sometime between 1886 and 1888

Given the distances travelled from town to town and the only known means of transport at the time being horse and cart or paddle steamer, such a journey shows just how much resolve that these pioneers of the "outback" had at the time. Travel would have been slow going and food and water would have been paramount in the journey's they undertook especially after leaving Wilcannia as a family and having that family expanding along the route. With small children in tow during the trip it would have made the entire journey a lot harder than one cares to comprehend. In the early days, stage coaches carried the passengers and bullock wagons the goods. The routes were: Wilcannia, White Cliffs, Milparinka and Tibooburra for the stage coach. From Wentworth to Wilcannia travel could be taken by paddle steamer, which usually carried goods.

Since the arrival of John Angell there have been six generations of the family and currently, four generations of the Angell family still living in Australia and two generations living in Scotland.

Three of John and Christina's son's, John, William and Alexander, went on to form the Angell Bros, a tank sinking team that were rarely out of work in the district. William George Angell went on to take a lease on Binerah Downs station around 1928 and so the Angell history in what is affectionately known as "Corner Country" was borne.


Calendar of Events

• 1849 John William Angell born Unley SA
• 1876 Sarah Jane Middleton born Menindee NSW
• 1878 Married Christina May Middleton Wilcannia NSW
• 1879 Esther Emily born/died Wilcannia NSW
• 1880 John Thomas born Wilcannia NSW
• 1882 William George born Wilcannia NSW
• 1885 Margaret A born Wilcannia NSW
• 1888 Alexander born Milparinka NSW
• 1890 Ima May born Tibooburra NSW
• 1890 Margaret A died Tibooburra NSW
• 1894 Edith M born Tibooburra NSW
• 1896 Henry born Tibooburra NSW (died same year)
• 1897 Ernest Bertie born Tibooburra NSW
• 1899 Chistina died Tibooburra NSW
• 1926 John William died Tibooburra NSW aged 77 years


Previous page: John Angell
Next page: William George Angell