Sunday, 13 November 2016


Statue of Benjamin Singleton. Singleton.

Various family members were early European settlers in Australia, largely in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. Here are some of the place names that bear their names:

Paternal Side

Geary's Gap - Near Canberra. Named after my great, great, great grandfather, Daniel Geary, who used to run a pub there.

Mount Clark - A mountain in North Queensland. Named after my great grandfather, John Clark.

Lornesleigh Street - Townsville. Named after an old family cattle station.

Packer Street - Canberra. Named after a great, great uncle.

Maternal Side

Singleton - A town in the Hunter Valley. Named after Benjamin Singleton, a fifth great uncle.

Kingaroy - Named after two Markwell brothers who first settled the area.

Brisbane - There are six Markwell streets in various suburbs including Hamilton, Daisy Hill, Auchenflower.

Surfers Paradise - Markwell Street  is named after my great grandfather, William Markwell, who was one of the first settlers. Right near the beach.


Australia, my family and many others, gave everything to defeat tyranny. It wasn't just the "big" countries that did everything.

From my maternal family, twenty Markwell cousins served including my grandfather and his brother. Seven were killed. 
The Markwell cousins won; two Military Medals, one Distinguished Service Order, one Croix de Guerre, one Military Cross. Two were promoted to the rank of Major.
In World War Two, twenty-eight Markwell family served, including my mother who was in the Signals Corps. One of the Markwell cousins had already served in World War One. A Markwell cousin won the George Cross ( second only to the Victoria Cross). 

Another Markwell became a Major. Only my great uncle, Lenny, was killed out of those who served. He was killed in New Guinea. Lenny was also a Rat of Tobruk. When his fiance received the terrible news, she committed suicide.
Not finished yet. That's only the Markwell side. Two Bells, cousins of my grandfather, served in the Light Horse in World War One. 
In World War Two, my two uncles were both severely wounded at El Alamein which was one of the most crucial battles in history. My Uncle Jack later took his life due to the severe injuries he had received.Uncle Dick had severe PTSD.
 " I always smell blood and lime."
 Dick was in bitter hand to hand fighting against the Afrika Korps. He saw a close mate's head blown off. He bayoneted to death a German.

And not to forget my Grandmother Bell's massive monetary contribution to the war effort. Probably around a small fortune in today's money. Her large family residence, Mornington, was turned into a hospital during the war, run by Irish nuns. 

Countries like Australia, Greece, Canada, New Zealand gave everything and more.