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Byaduk, Australia - 1850-1900

Efforts to aviod mistreatment of the Aborigines. The 'Stolen Generation'. In 1851 discovery of gold in New South Wales with the Bushrangers in their heyday. Up until 1868 approximatley 160,000 convicts transported. Melbourne Univeristry founded. Britain grants self-goverment to Tasmania, and Queenland separated from New South Wales with Brisbane the capital. 1855 sees the first Australian interstate cricket match, with 1862 the first England cricket team arrives. 1880 World Exhibition takes place in Melbourne.


Willam Brand (1833-1914) was born in Chrishall, and married Susan Ward (1837-1907) in 1854, also in Chrishall. They embarked in the ship 'Constant' in 8th November 1854, and disembarked in Australia in 22 February 1855. William's brother, Charles (1831-1903) and his wife Rebecca Cook (1834-1917) followed them on the ship 'Irene', and landed on 11th February 1858. They were joined by a cousin, also called Charles, with his wife Susan, who joined them a bit later, but before 1862 when they had a son Frederick in Victoria.

Susan Ward was the daughter of James Ward and Charlotte Clark who emigrated to Australia with William and Susan in 1855.

The township they settled in the early 1860s, was named Byaduk, an aboriginal word apparently meaning "stone tomahawk".


The Byaduk Caves, lava tubes from the volcanic eruption of Mount Napier, are nearby. You can also see extensive views of the lava flow at Harmans Valley and the tumuli lava blisters off Old Crushers Road.


Byaduk is a locality on the Hamilton Port Fairy Road in southwest Victoria, Australia situated about 260km west of Melbourne. Byaduk is at an altitude of about 106m above sea level. Byaduk is on the Scott Creek. The nearest more populous place is the village of Macarthur which is 9.9km away with a population of around 250.

The Post Office opened on 1 August 1863.

The Post Office
The Byaduk Post Office



Charles Brand and Rebecca Cook had Henry Brand born in Huntingdon, England - Henry was to die in 27 February 1858 when he was less than 12 month's old in Australia.

Charles and Rebecca had large family most of whom were born at Byaduk.


William was a Byaduk Pioneer.

James (1832-?), son of Joshua (1803-1879) emigrated later. Joshua was a brother of Charles and William's father, William.


Extracts from a letter by John Brand, 12/03/2012 reproduced with permission

Charles Brand was a Land Selector for the Brands in Byaduk, south of Hamilton. Their property was originally 132 acres on the Louth Swamp Road at the west side of the Byaduk Parish. It was selected in May 1863 and was paid off in 1866 by Charles Brand with the help of his brother William Brand and William's father-in-law, James Ward. The property was immediately subdivided into three portions - William taking the western portion, James Ward the central portion and Charles taking the eastern portion. William Brand and the Ward family retained their sections of this block until the whole farm was sold by William's son Fredrick William Brand in 1922. There is a house on that property which was built by Fredrick Brand and Tom Harper in about 1906. The Brand brothers and the Ward family subsequently bought at least ten other properties in the Byaduk village and other properties down at Macarthur, the township immediately south of Byaduk.

Charles Brand mortgaged a great deal of his property to increase his property holding and to build his house and subsequently lost all of his property when the banks foreclosed on mortgages in 1893. They appeared to have remained in the house however and Charles' eldest son, John Alfred Brand, bought the property back off the bank in 1897 and subsequently bought a number of other farm properties around that house in the early 1900's thus re-establishing their living off the land. it appears that John Alfred was the hero of the family in that he provided a home and a living for his elderly parents until they died. However he, himself, died in a drowning accident in 1915.

When John Alfred Brand died he left that particular property to his brother Josiah Brand who retained it as his mother's place of residence until she died and then subsequently sold it to Fred Brand (a distant cousin) in 1920.

Edited extracts from John Brand

Both Charles and Rebecca died at Byaduk and are buried in the Byaduk Cemetery.