|Notes for William Charles GOODING|
|William Charles, born 1857, married Marie Henrietta Wuttrich, and farmed at Yinnar for several years. They then bought land at Tanjil South. |
Emma, the 10th child to survive, married John Blair, and they too, owned land at Tanjil South.
Minnie, the youngest child of James and Marion Gooding, married Francis Keogh of Yinnar.
William Charles Gooding, who was the ninth child of James and Marion Gooding, and the sixth child to survive was twenty two years old when he met and married 16 year old Marie Henrietta Wuttrich at Sale.
Marie's Swiss parents, Alphonse Wuttrich and Marie (nee Perrotte) Wuttrich, also held property at Geelong. They migrated from Neufchatel, Switzerland. in 1854, arriving on the ship |'Lloyd'. They were required to be naturalised as Australian citizens according to law, before they could buy or own land at Barrabool Hills near Geelong. On this property which they had selected, their children (of whom Marie Henrietta was one) were all born and spent their childhood years.
After William and Marie (Wuttrich) Gooding were married, they spent their early wedded years on a farm at Hazelwood near Morwell, and here the first five of their ten children were born.
In 1889, William and Marie left the farm at Hazelwood and assisted by Marie's father, Alphonse Wuttrich, they took over land at Tanjil South. This land was held by John Murie under a fourteen year lease from the Crown.
However, after only four of these fourteen years had elapsed, John Murie relinquished his lease to William Charles Gooding, who purchased ownership from the Crown in May, 1889 Thus William and Marie Gooding became the owners of a property on the Tanjil River flats. This land which they named 'Myrtlevale', was to be their home for the remainder of their lives.
William and Marie lived with their five children in a split timber cottage close to the Tanjil River when they first came to the area.
The cottage was built on this site in order to have a permanent water supply close by; but it was in obvious danger of being flooded. Consequently they decided to build a larger, more suitable home on higher ground nearer to the Walhalla Road.
This house was completed by a builder, A.Mclean, in 1891, and the family moved in. The same builder was also employed to build the farm sheds, stables and cowshed.
The house at 'Myrtlevale', around which an extensive garden always flourished, indicating the whole family's love of gardens, consisted of twenty squares. A passageway divided the five bedrooms and billiard room, which also opened off the passage-way. A large room or parlour, as it was called a dining room in which a huge cedar table was the central feature, and the kitchen with its brick baker's oven and long wooden table, and a storage (or lobby) off which the bathroom and laundry opened, completed the plan of the house.
Hot water was supplied to the kitchen and bathroom by means of a "fountains", heated on an open tire. This vessel was suspended by its handle on a moveable iron arm on which a hook at the end enabled the cast iron fountain to be swung on or off the fire at will. Hot water was drawn off by the tap at the base of the container and more water was poured in at the top when the lid was removed. As the fountains held several gallons of water at one time a good supply of hot water was available whenever the fire was lit.
This water, however, had to carried in from the well. As the house was so far from the river with its permanent water, an alternative means of supplying water had to be found. This was overcome by the construction of an underground well or tank, which was lined with bricks and held several thousand gallons of water when full.
The rain water from the roof was drained into and conserved in the well, which was covered by a brick dome to protect the water from pollution, and to keep it cool in summer. This tank was situated outside the bathroom on the southwest corner of the house. An iron hand pump was the means, by which the family pumped out the water into a container and carried it into the kitchen for domestic use.
Lighting at night was supplied by a Miller lamp system. This central pressure tank of fuel which was pumped up to hold pressure, supplied the main living rooms, by way of pipes laid to each room, on which a jet with a mantle enabled the lamp to be lit. First the jet was heated by means of asbestos waste dipped in methylated spirits until sufficiently hot. The fuel was then turned on, resulting in a good white light, far superior to the usual wick-fed kerosene lamps in use during that era.
Goodings had the pressure lamps installed in the kitchen, lounge, billiard and dining rooms, and were able to read, sew or play billiards when the day's tasks were completed. Lighting in the bedrooms however, was still by the conventional candles and wick-fed kerosene lamps with a glass chimney.
When William and Marie first came to 'Myrtlevale', they brought with them a herd of mixed-breed cattle, and until the cowshed was built, these cattle were hand milked in the open air. This was carried out by using the common place method (at that time) of strapping a three-legged stool about the hips of the milker, leaving that person with both hands free for the milking process. The milker would then sit near the untethered beast and proceed to milk her. If the cow moved away, the person milking her would simply follow with the stool and continue the milking.
After the milking was completed, the milk was set out in flat shallow pans in the dairy for 24 hours to allow the cream to rise. This cream was skimmed off with a flat metal concave utensil (which was perforated to allow the excess milk to pour off) and poured into cans in readiness for churning into butter. As years passed, when it became available, Goodings bought a separator to separate the cream from the milk.
When the cream was churned into butter in the big, wooden churn (turned by any willing members of the family) it was washed, salted and pressed into butter boxes for selling. Some was sent to Walhalla to supply the gold mining community, some was sent to Melbourne, with the remainder exported to England. The whole family was involved in helping with the dairying, as it was very time consuming.
While the herd of cows grew in number, William and Marie established the farm and consolidated the pastures and crops, as each portion of land was cleared and tilled. In 1897 they decided to hold a clearing sale at 'Myrtlevale', to dispose of surplus stock. They duly held the sale which was conducted by Mathieson and Davis, Stock and Station Agents. For 115 head of cattle, which included 72 cows, 3 bulls, 13 heifers and a few calves, the Goodings received Three Hundred and Forty-Five pounds, seventeen shillings, no pence. ($690.70). The top priced animal was a roan cow, which fetched eleven pouds five shillings and sixpence ($22.55) The lowest price was a black cow sold for one pound ($2).
When all the cross-bred cattle were sold, William bought the nucleus of his Ayrshire cattle stud, which were to be the cattle he continued to favour for the rest of his life. The Ayrshires were shown with quite a lot of success at local agricultural shows as well as the Melbourne Royal Show.
To add to the production from the farm at 'Myrtlevale', the timber, scrub and tussocks were cleared from the river flats, and the Gooding family planted cereal crops of maize, oats and millet. Potatoes were also grown, providing enough for family needs as well as some for sale. The seed from the grain crops was fed to poultry and pigs kept by the family. They also kept pea fowl, which were allowed to roam freely about the farm and the caucus cries of the pea cocks could be heard by neighbouring families living on both sides of the Tanjil River, as the sounds carried up the valley.
The pigs and poultry were kept in sheds and fed with grain which was supplemented by the skimmed milk obtained from the dairying.
The milk was wheeled down to the pig sty in a big vat on a trolly, which ran on iron rails (like a ligature railway) from the cowshed, where it was given to the calves and pigs.
One of the hazards of growing crops of the river flats was, of course, recurring floods. Often the whole year's crops were ruined, resulting in hardship for animals and farmers alike. It therefore seemed wise to have a crop of a more permanent nature; and so in July 1891 William planted twelve acres of fruit trees on the highest ground along the Tanjil River bank.
These trees were purchased from H.W.Coles a nurseryman at Hawthorn, and the 208 trees obtained cost ten pounds, sixteen shillings and sixpence ($21.95). There were apples, pears, cherries peaches, plums, quinces, a few lemons and gooseberry bushes. Some of the apple varieties planted were - Adams, Pearmain, Cleopatra, Cheltenham, Pippin, Sheperds Perfection, Reinette du Canada, Pomme de Neige, Prince of Pippins, Gladney's Red, Red Astrachan, Worchestor Peal-main, Trevett's Seedling and Coles Rymer.
The orchard prospered in the deep river soil and soon began to bear fruit. When this ripened, the entire family was required to deal with the crop. As the crop was picked it was hand graded for side, by means of passing the apples, pears, peaches, and quinces, one at a time, through leather rings of varying sizes. The fruit was then packed according to side, quality and soundness into boxes.
These packing cases were made by family members in the joinery shed, built for this purpose, and stamped with their name. The fruit variety was stencilled on as the cases were filled in readiness for transportation to market.
Some fruit was sent to Walhalla; mostly soft fruits, such as plums, peaches and cherries, with a lesser amount of apples and pears.
The firmer fruits were sent to Melbourne and sold at the Victorian Market. These included some early ripening apples but mainly the stone fruits, such as peaches and plums.
However, the main crop of late apples and pears was exported to England. Gooding's pears and apples were sent to London for a number of years and during the 1900's one hundred cases were despatched to England via S. S. Geelong. In 1906 fruit was railed to Melbourne, to be consigned to London from Port Melbourne, with Yuill and Co. , as agents, on the steamer, 'Sarpedon'. The cost of freight on this ship was sixty-five shillings ($6-50), per 40 cubic feet of storage space.
Eventually their enterprise into the export of fruit became unprofitable. Costs rose and also because no cooling system was available to slow down the ripening process, over-ripening of the fruit occurred in the northern summer temperatures.
Walhalla provided markets for many goods produced at 'Myrtlevale' such as butter jam and eggs, as well as vegetables and fruit. The Cobb and Co., coaches which served Walhalla, stopped at Gooding's stables for a change of horses, before tackling the long mountainous haul to the goldfields. The coach passengers, often tired from travelling from Melbourne for hours, were provided with home-cooked meals by the Gooding family.
The 'Myrtlevale' kitchen had a huge wood fired baker's oven, in which the older girls baked bread, cakes and pies in sufficient quantities for the family, as well as the coach passengers. The dough for the bread was mixed on the long kitchen table. It was then put to rise on the warm hobs of the oven kneaded on the table a second time, risen again, this time put in the tins, and finally baked crisp. Six loaves at a time, in the big bock oven.
Goodings had to butcher their own meat supply. They pickled much of this in salt. in wooden barrels and kept it in the coolest part of the house (store room) in order to keep the meat supply sweet for fairly long periods of time.
Bacon for the family larder was a more difficult problem. There were domestic pigs, gone wild roaming over much of the uncleared Tanjil River flats. These were hunted by William and the older boys, shot and brought home to be scalded cleaned and salted as sides of bacon.
The salting process was done by placing the half carcass in a wooden trough and rubbing in a mixture of salt, sugar and saltpetre daily, until the meat was cured. These sides were then smoked to complete the preserving process and the processed side of bacon hung in bags in the store room to be used when needed.
William and Marie Gooding's children all attended the Tanjil South School from its inception in 1887. They walked to school across the swampy tussock-covered, snake and pig- infested river flats, crossing the Tanjil River by means of fallen lops over the stream and climbing the steep, scrubby hill to school.
On the way to school, the children greatly feared the wild pigs, as they had been warned by their parents to be careful of the animals. If the pigs were startled by the children coming suddenly upon them without warning, they were likely to attack.
During floods the children were unable to cross the Tanjil River by their usual fallen logs, and it became necessary for them to walk much further up-stream to where a small low level bridge spanned the river. This bridge was made of split timber and linked, by means of a surveyed anyway, the Tanjil River Road to the east, to the Moe-Hill End Road on the west side of the river.
The bridge crossing was used for a real number of years by residents living on either side of the river. Otherwise, they would have sad to travel much further to the only other bridge over the Tanjil River in the district, which is on the Walhalla Road where it still exists today. The little split-timbered bridge was not maintained, and it became impassable about the late 1940's and has not been reopened.
When the narrow gauge railway spur from Moe to Walhalla was completed in 1910, the coach traffic eventually ceased. However, because the Goodings had been a recognised stopping place for the coaches the Railways Commission of Victoria allotted the area a siding, which was named Gooding Station. At this point, where the line crossed the Walhalla Road on the eastern boundary of 'Myrtlevale', passengers who wished to board the train could do so by signalling the train driver to stop and take them aboard. Similarly, passengers wishing to disembark could also do so by arrangement with the train's crew.
Tragedy struck the Gooding family, when the influenza epidemic which swept the nation after World War 1 took its toll. William succumbed to it and died on October the 13th, 1920. He was laid to rest in the Moe cemetery, aged 62 years.
After William Gooding's passing, his wife Marie, and their sons continued to manage the property successfully. They made a few changes, one of which was the breeding of Australian Illawarra Shorthorn cattle.
They changed over from the Ayrshire stud to an A.I.S. Shorthorn stud, (about 1927). These dual purpose cattle were bred for both milk and beef production, and were one of the first new breeds developed in Australia, for Australian conditions. The Goodings continued with the long tradition of showing their stud stock, and gained recognition in the form of prices at the Royal Melbourne Show and many country agricultural shows as well. This stud continued as a successful enterprise until about 194(). From that time on the main source of income was derived from bullocks.
When Cecil the youngest son of William and Marie married Gwendoline Cameron, in 1939, another home was built on 'Myrtlevale' for the young couple to live in. This meant that Marie, her youngest daughter Ethel and second youngest son, Laurel, (both unmarried) continued living in the 'Myrtlevale' homestead. All of the older members of the family having married and moved to homes of their own.
Marie Henrietta (Wuttrich) Gooding, departed this life, aged 82 years, on March the 4th, 1945, and was interred beside her husband, William, in the Moe cemetery.
On the death of Marie Henrietta Gooding, the property 'Myrtlevale' was willed jointly to Laurel and Cecil, who continued to work together until Cecil's death in 1961. After Laurel's death in 1971, 'Myrtlevale' was bequeathed to John, Cecil's only son. The property was sold in 1983, ending the Gooding family's era at 'Myrtlevale' spanning almost a century of settlement at Tanjil South.
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