STEWART, John & Frances (nee Heffernan)

STEWART, John (12th May 1831 – 5th December 1898)

STEWART, Frances (nee Heffernan) (1837 – 1928)

Andrew and Margaret (nee Cameron) arrived in Sydney on 15th November 1838 aboard the “St George”. They had four children, John, born Kingussie and Insch, Inverness Scotland, Henry,  Allan (died during the passage) and Bill.

The family then travelled by boat to Eden arriving about 1839 and then travelled onto the Monaro.  They walked from Eden up the Big Jack Mountain to Cathcart and “stayed” at the Dragon Inn with Mr Hibbard.  They worked as shepherds at Archy’s Flat for Mr Hibbard.  About 1844, they selected land and called the property “Turvin” having 2,000 acres, about 1.5 miles from Burnima Station with the (Bombala) river forming the boundary.   They built a house and reared a family of six sons and one daughter.

Unfortunately Andrew died 7th March 1859 and at “Turvin”. Andrew and Margaret had acquired a number of properties totalling nearly 6,000 acres.

John inherited “Turvin”. He married Frances Heffernan in 1856 in Bombala.  They had seven sons and 6 daughters.

Their third son Robert John Stewart (1869) married Rebecca Elliot in 1890.  They had eight sons and two daughters; he died in Cooma in 1935.

Ronald Esmond Stewart (1895 – 2nd July 1976) second son of Robert and Rebecca married Maria (nee Robinson) (15th May 1888 – 20th March 1968) in 1916 in Randwick, NSW.

Ronald served in WWI as a Sergeant in the 55th Battalion, 1st AI from 9th January 1916 to 8th July 1919.  He received the Military Medal (MM) for bravery and great gallantry in the field, and Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) in the field.

Corporal Ronald Esmond Stewart’s citation for the Military Medal.

“For continuous gallantry and devotion to duty during an attack against the Hindenburg Line North of BELLICOURT on 30th September 1918. Shortly after the objective was reached the enemy delivered a strong counter attack, and he protected his attack from either flank by heavy Machine Gun fire, which swept the trench occupied by our men.  In spite of danger from this fire Corporal STEWART, who was the only member of a Lewis Gun unwounded, carried his gun out in front of the trench, and fired on the enemy continuously, killing and wounding many of them. The fire from his gun was so effective that the Hun was forced to retire.  A few of the enemy approached along a trench, and as the fire from his gun could not reach them, this gallant N.C.O. collected a few bombs, and joining a bombing party, pursued the enemy, who were forced to retire.  A number of Boche were left dead in the trench.”

 Source: “Commonwealth Gazette” No.  109
Date: 15th September 1919