The Hope family migrated from Ancrum, in Scotland, to a small farming community in western Victoria at Apsley, Australia in the mid-late 1800's. What a trip! What a move!
Well! In reality, it was Thomas Hope who was born in Ancrum but it was his family who actually made their lives in & around Apsley; & for several generations they lived in that community, but not until after his death.
One of my brothers, Keith Hope, visited the area in the late 1970's / early 1980's to see what he could discover about the early roots of our family. He visited many places & spoke to many people, who in turn, suggested he speak to this or that person, as, they being older & having lived in the community all their lives, had personal knowledge of the various families who had come & gone through the lives of the local community. The information obtained from Keith on this trip was in the early days of us discovering our roots. Later on in the research process, we were able to obtain official documentation that verified things like names, places, years of events & ages of this person or that at said events. Therefore, these are his notes & should be read with the understanding that at the time, we had limited knowledge of who & what we were researching.
"One such person was John Warner, who by now was in his late 50's or even in his early 60's [when one is young, as Keith was at the time, it's sometimes difficult to gauge the age of older people].
This [his meeting with John Warner] turned out to be the most heartening information of all. Mr Warner was a cocky character and although about 55/65 knew all about the Hopes. He first of all showed us the site of the Powers Creek School where all of the Hopes went to school and then took us the the spot where the Hopes [homestead/house/shack] had been built. The only thing that remains to date are some old fruit [peach] trees. He recalled that the Hopes were strong in Powers Creek for some time and also at Apsley."
By the way, Powers Creek was a settlement near Apsley.
"He remembered a time when the Apsley Hopes were extremely wealthy and "sat in the Border Inn Hotel loading shot into their rifles with bank notes". He recalled that there was a David Hope who was blind and he credited him with having invented the first wool press. He was also of the opinion that this David Hope was fairly young when he died, and the age 32 would be consistent.
He had heard that Ian Hope of Harrow was a cousin of the Hopes at Lake Wallace."
Another person with whom Keith spoke was Laurie Robertson.
Keith went on to record:
"Mr Laurie Robertson, the Secretary of the Edenhope Cemetery Trust showed me the original burial record book which started about 1890. Prior to that date there was no record of burials [as required under the Burial Act which did not come into force until about 1895]. From the period 1892-1925 there were only about 4 mentions of Hopes buried at Edenhope and they were:
Eliza Ann Hope [wife of Robert] died 20 June 1892. It is reasonable to presume that she was the wife of Dr Robert Hope who along with his brothers George & James, settled at Lake Wallace.
David Hope of Powers Creek, died 20 January 1907, aged 80. [There seems some doubt as to who David was as his age does not fit in with established patterns]. Mr Robertson turned to another section of his book which had a cross-reference and the age of 80 was again noted. If he was a member of the Powers Creek "Hopes" he would have been aged 29 when Thomas & Alice arrived in Melbourne in 1856.
Thomas Hope of Powers Creek died between 1st & 20th July 1908, no age given. It appears that he was a son of Thomas Hope who came to Victoria. It is noted that a Thomas Hope aged 16 arrived in 1856. This means he would have been born in 1840. It is also noted that Thomas was a bachelor and if he died in 1908 would have been 68. Noel Hope states that Thomas Hope was buried at Edenhope.
William Hope of Edenhope died 19 November 1912, aged 61. Another of the sons of Thomas who came to Victoria with his parents. From his death date and his age, William would have been born in 1851 which is consistent with his being 5 years old when he arrived in Victoria in 1856.
It is interesting to note that both David & Thomas Hope, who were both recorded as living at Powers Creek and were both of Presbyterian faith, were buried side by side. Whereas William, the only one of the four whose dates fit exactly as being a son of Thomas was of Church of England faith which appears to be the faith of the Hopes of Lake Wallace. Perhaps as he came back to Edenhope to live he aligned himself to the other branch."
Such are the musings & thoughts about information that one gathers in the early days of tracing one's family history.
NOTE: [this page continues to be "under construction"...]
But what of Ancrum? Where is it? [to be continued...]