One of the reasons I chose to write about James was that I had found out a great deal of information about his marriage in 1851 to Louisa Lennie. I was going to tell you about how he took his wife and, at the time, two children on the ship "Gambia" to Mebourne in 1854 and about their subsequent life in Australia. Sadly, during the writing up of the story I realised there were two James Dalrymples, both living in roughly the same part of Scotland, both of roughly the same age and both going to Melbourne at about the same time, but that my James Dalrymple was not the one who went on The Gambia !
- he died in a suburb of Melbourne called Fitzroy, in the County of Bourke.
- he was described as a farmer.
- he had been living in the Colonies since 1855.
- his wife was called Agnes Black and they had married in Scotland in 1871.
- the informant on the certificate was his brother William Dalrymple (born ten years after James) who also lived at the same address.
It was then a case of finding the marriage - this took place in Glasgow on 17th July 1871. At the time, perhaps temporarily, James was living in Eldrig just outside Mochrum and, crucially for me, was described as a "Seaman (merchant services)".
From this, I will accept limited information, I have been able to draft my interpretation of how his life panned out. I will admit that this story has a lot more uncertainty than most others but unfortunately he didn't leave much of a foot print for me to find.
"Warbler" was a 166 ton schooner - a swift sailing vessel, generally two-masted, rigged either with fore and aft sails on both masts, or with square top and top gallant sails on the foremast. Pictures of early sailing ships with Australian connections are rare and I have so far failed to find one.
While in dock a fire breaks out on 30th July. The newspaper reports : On Sunday morning about 5 o'clock, Captain Gray, of the schooner " Warbler," now lying in Constitution Dock, was awoke by loud cries of “fire, fire”, and found when jumping out of his birth that the larboard side of the cabin was enveloped in flames. With great presence of mind he immediately pulled down all the draperies and, assistance coming from the deck, the fire was quickly subdued, without doing any considerable amount of injury. How the fire originated yet remains a mystery, all lights having been out from 9 o'clock the previous night, which fact leads to the supposition that the fire was the act of an incendiary.
There can't have been much damage as on 1st August they left Hobart and less than two weeks later, on 12th August, they arrived back in Melbourne with one passenger and 35,000 feet timber, 11,500 palings (wood for making fences), 80,000 laths (a narrow strip of straight grained wood), 200 bags lime, 113 casks oats, 250 bales hay, 200 bags lime and 26 bags oats. There is evidence that more cargo was taken on and the ship continued to transport supplies around Australia.
Whether James carried on serving as a seaman is not known but I surmise that at some point he must have decided to take a ship back to Scotland as he married Agnes Black in Blythswood, Glasgow on 20th July 1871. He was still described as a "seaman (merchant services)" so it sounds as if, certainly up until his marriage, he might have continued travelling backwards and forwards to Australia on cargo ships.
The family grave at the Mochrum Parish Church in Port William, which I mentioned earlier, remembers a number of family members. It was paid for by James himself in memory of :
- his father James Dalrymple who died 29th Sept 1852 aged 63 years
- his nephew James Dalrymple who died 20th May 1853 aged 9 weeks
- his brother Alexander Dalrymple who died 25th Nov 1853 aged 25 years
- Janet Wallace his mother who died the 10th of November 1873 aged 76 years
- John Dalrymple his brother who died at Jersey the 3rd of October 1874 aged 51 years, and