Edward Bell arrived in Sydney 1839.  He quickly gained partners and they purchased a run on Lake George, NSW - solely to acquire assigned servants (which were provided to landholders by the government).   Edward set out to Port Phillip, with approximately twenty staff, no experience in livestock, droving 1200 head of cattle and 30 horses.

Edward met up with the Bolden Bros on the Murray River. (The Boldens settled most of the land around Warrnambool and Port Fairy). Edward arrived in Melbourne Nov 1841, where most of the cattle were immediately sold to butchers.  Then with a dray and stores, he started for the Western District with the remainder of the herd, about 300 head.

At the Grange, a police magistrate, Mr French was establishing himself, and in June of that year (1842) Bell had the honour of being appointed a Magistrate to assist French on the bench. Bell and partners settled on Englefield, Glenelg River as their heifer station.

In January 1846 Bell exchanged the Englefield run with Mr Clerk for another run near Mt Rouse, which he named The Green Hills.

The original station of Mumumberick (south east Mt Rouse) of which The Green Hills formed a part, was taken up in 1840 by Matthew Gibb, for Capt Swanston. It was sold in 1843 to Robert Clerk.


The Burchett Bros arrived in Port Philip in August 1839. By December they had squatted on what was to be The Gums run near Mt Rouse. The three brothers, Henry (1820-1877), Charles Gowland (1817-1856) and Frederick (1824-1861) held opposing views on the best stock for the run to carry.

In 1843 Charles started a business in Melbourne and sold his share to his brothers who retained ownership of The Gums until 1849.

Although Henry had held an equal share in the property (1843-49), he relocated all his stock to “Coree”, Port Fairy. The Gums was eventually sold to Henry Gottereux.


John Cox was born at Clarendon, Van Diemans Land in 1813. Cox was involved in whaling and storekeeping at Port Fairy. He took up the “Mt Rouse” run which was centred on the abundant fresh water spring in late 1839.

In April 1842 he was ejected from the run so the government could integrate it into the Mt Rouse Aboriginal Protectorate Station. Cox then took up the “Weerangourt” run.  By 1847 Cox was a local magistrate. He died in 1853,at sea, on a trip to England.


Patrick Codd.  There seems to be a spelling error in the name as CC Horrell, who surveyed the township of Penshurst in 1851, marked Patrick Codd’s grave as Cobb’s grave.

In December 1839 Codd was acting superintendent for the Wedges run at the Grange Burn when he shot and killed the much celebrated leader of the Kolor tribe, Tunrap- Warneen.  In early 1840 Codd was working as Cox’s overseer at Mt Rouse and was himself killed by Figara Alkepurata (aka Roger) in retaliation.


Acheson Jeremy Sydney French was the sixth son of Robert French, Monivea (Monivae) Castle, Galway, Ireland. Acheson French was the most important person in the early years of the Hamilton district. He took out a licence for the Monivae run in 1841 then later appointed the first Police Magistrate in the district.  French married Anna Watton, daughter of Dr John Watton (later of Penshurst).     He died in a diving accident at the St. Kilda swimming baths 29th January 1870.


William Hutton was one of the earliest settlers of Port Philip.  He held the very first licence for depasturing stock on Crown land in the Pt Philip district.  He moved from the Salt River (Maribyrnong- Keilor) to “Gazette” in 1844.  William died in 1862.

David Hutton was born 1808 and landed in Tasmania in 1836.  He spent ten years in Tasmania arriving in Portland in 1846 and then to Mount Rouse.  He leased “Purdeet” (later renamed Cheviot Hills after the region in southern Scotland) from the Crown in 1852. David was a Shire Councillor from 1864 to 1871. He died 1875.


Donald Kennedy was born in 1807 at Glenroy Lochaber Invernesshire and died 1864.  He emigrated to NSW 1837, arriving Port Philip 1840.

Donald took up the “Croxton” run in 1842 with his brother Duncan.  They also held “Linlithgow Plains”.  Donald was elected a Member Legislative Council in 1854 - serving until 1864. He promoted scientific agriculture and was president of the Pt Philip Farmers Society, Commissioner of the Savings Bank, Deputy Governor of the Colonial Bank and a company director.


Dr Robert Martin JP was born in Skye,1798. After arriving in Australia he overlanded from the Murrumbidgee district, down the Hume and Hovell track, before following the Major Mitchell line to Mt Sturgeon, arriving 1841. He held Mt Sturgeon station until 1859. Martin was the first medical doctor in the district - he was also First Trustee of St Johns Anglican church Heidelberg, built 1850.  He lived across the Yarra river on his property “View Bank”


James Ritchie was born 1812 Blyth Scotland. Ritchie and partner James Sceales took up the “Blackwood” run February 1842.  By 1845 Ritchie had bought out his partner.  He later purchased “Woodhouse” from Adolphus Sceales.  When James was accidentally killed in 1857, as he was unmarried, his brothers Daniel and Simon took over the running of Blackwood and Woodhouse.

Daniel Ritchie was elected the first Mount Rouse Shire President in 1863.


James and Adolphus Sceales (Scales).

James arrived from Leith, Scotland where he had been a Chief Magistrate. He settled on Blackwood with James Ritchie 1842, selling out to Ritchie in 1845.

Adolphus held Woodhouse station from March 1848 to June 1854 He also leased the Kolor and Purdeet stations, surveyed from the Aboriginal Protectorate from September to December 1851.  The runs were not stocked and he relinquished the leases, which ended up with David Hutton (Purdeet) and John and Daniel Twomey (Kolor).


Dr John Watton arrived in Melbourne in 1839.  The 1841 the census recorder came first to John Watton’s station, his ‘address’ given as Djerriwha… Weerabin’. [?] Simon Staughton purchased the Brisbane Ranges - Exford run from Watton shortly afterwards. Of the 10 adults who were living and working at his station, 5 were shepherds, so this was clearly a substantial enterprise.

By July 1842 Charles La Trobe approved George Robinson’s (Chief Protector of Aboriginals) plan for unsuccessful squatter Dr John Watton to take temporary charge of the Mount Rouse Reserve.  The Government appointed Watton as a medical officer and not an assistant Protector - presumably as a financial saving.  Dr Watton was still at the Protectorate when it closed in 1849.