Now this is the law of the Overland that all in the West obey -
A man must cover with travelling sheep a six-mile stage a day;
But this is the law which the drovers make, right easily understood,
They travel their stage where the grass is bad, but they camp where the grass is good;
They camp, and they ravage the squatter's grass till never a blade remains,
Then they drift away as the white clouds drift on the edge of the saltbush plains;
From camp to camp and from run to run they battle it hand to hand
For a blade of grass and the right to pass on the track of the Overland.
For this is the law of the Great Stock Routes, 'tis written in white and black -
The man that goes with a travelling mob must keep to a half-mile track;
And the drovers keep to a half-mile track on the runs where the grass is dead,
But they spread their sheep on a well-grassed run till they go with a two-mile spread.
So the squatters hurry the drovers on from dawn till the fall of night,
And the squatters' dogs and the drovers' dogs get mixed in a deadly fight.
Yet the squatter's men, though they hunt the mob, are willing the peace to keep,
For the drovers learn how to use their hands when they go with the travelling sheep;
But this is the tale of a jackaroo that came from a foreign strand,
And the fight that he fought with Saltbush Bill, the King of the Overland.
Now Saltbush Bill was a drover tough as ever the country knew,
He had fought his way on the Great Stock Routes from the sea to the big Barcoo;
He could tell when he came to a friendly run that gave him a chance to spread,
And he knew where the hungry owners were that hurried his sheep ahead;
He was drifting down in the Eighty drought with a mob that could scarcely creep
(When the kangaroos by the thousand starve, it is rough on the travelling sheep),
And he camped one night at the crossing-place on the edge of the Wilga run;
'We must manage a feed for them here,' he said, 'or half of the mob are done!'
So he spread them out when they left the camp wherever they liked to go,
Till he grew aware of a Jackaroo with a station-hand in tow.
They forced them in where the grass was dead in the space of the half-mile track;
And William prayed that the hand of Fate might suddenly strike him blue
But he'd get some grass for his starving sheep in the teeth of that Jackaroo.
So he turned and he cursed the Jackaroo; he cursed him, alive or dead,
From the soles of his great unwieldy feet to the crown of his ugly head, With an extra curse on the moke he rode and the cur at his heels that ran,
Till the jackaroo from his horse got down and went for the drover-man
With the station-hand for his picker-up, though the sheep ran loose the while, They battled it out on' the well-grassed plain in the regular prize-ring style.
Now, the new chum fought for his honour's sake and the pride of the English race,
But the drover fought for his daily bread with a smile on his bearded face.,
So he shifted ground, and he sparred for wind, and he made it a lengthy mill,
And from time to time as his scouts came in they whispered to Saltbush Bill -
'We have spread the sheep with a two-mile spread, and the grass it is something grand;
You must stick to him, Bill, for another round for the pride of the Overland.'
The new chum made it a rushing fight, though never a blow got home,
Till the sun rode high in the cloudless sky and glared on the brick-red loam,
Till the sheep drew in to the shelter-trees and settled them down to rest;
Then the drover said he would fight no more, and gave his opponent best.
So the new chum rode to the homestead straight, and told them a story grand
Of the desperate fight that he fought that day with the King of the Overland;
And the tale went home to the Public Schools of the pluck of the English swell -
How the drover fought for his very life, but blood in the end must tell.
But the travelling sheep and the Wilga sheep were boxed on the Old Man Plain;
'Twas a full week's work ere they drafted out and hun them off again;
A week's good grass in their wretched hides, with a curse and a stockwhip crack
They hunted them off on the road once more to starve on the half-mile track.
And Saltbush Bill, on the Overland, will many a time recite
How the best day's work that he ever did was the day that he lost the fight.
The first class consist of discharged marines and old servants of the Government who will be allowed food and clothing free of charge for two years, also four workmen rationed and clothed. These are to have priority in everything.
The second class will be those who have been convicts but have earned complete freedom; they will be clothed and victualled and given two men to work for them for two years.
The third class covers all those islanders owning land or building but with no claims on the Government. They will be clothed and fed from Governments stores for 12 months, with two men to help clear their grants of land in Van Diemen’s Land for the same period.
All classes are to be supplied with farm implements and other tools for use in cultivating the soils on their land.
The first Norfolk Islander to arrive at Hobart was George Guest, who came on the “Sydney” with Joseph Holt. George brought with him his wife and six children and a flock of sheep. Gov Bligh, when hearing of the arrival told Collins to buy any of the sheep that he could for £2/2/- per head. However many died during the voyage.
They were offered sheep and Bengal cows, instead of the houses, outhouses and barns they had been promised. They required clothing and bedding, but there was none to be given. Instead of 386 people expected, there were nearly 800, being the whole of the establishment from Norfolk not including the military.
Some of the characters had been described by Capt Piper, Commandant of Norfolk Island, as being “desperate characters”. (Robert Jillett was one such person)
It was one of the last recorded examples of industrial 'Luddism' in England. On the intercession of Edward Ellice, M.P. for Coventry, the sentence was commuted to transportation for life. Burbury arrived in Hobart Town in the York on 29 December 1832. His gaol and hulk reports gave him a good character and 'respectable connexions', and the surgeon-superintendent's report described his conduct on the voyage as 'excellent'. His wife Mary and an infant daughter followed him to Hobart in the Gulnare, which arrived in February 1833.
In March 1834 he was assigned for service as a constable at Oatlands, and four years later was promoted district constable. Commended for his share in capturing sheep-stealers and tracking down bushrangers, he was granted a ticket-of-leave in December 1837 and a free pardon on 30 October 1839, also receiving local testimonials to his character, and pecuniary rewards.
Soon after arrival he had started acquiring land in his wife's name, first in the township of Oatlands where he built a dwelling house and the offices for his butchery. He first rented and later owned extensive lands at Tooms Lake, Little Swanport, Tin Pot Marsh and the Race Course Marsh near Oatlands on which he ran his herds. In 1842 he was the clerk of the Oatlands Race Course, became district pound keeper in 1853, and was elected to the municipal council in its first elections at Oatlands in January 1862. He died at Oatlands on 30 July 1870.
For thirty-eight years Burbury had taken part in every public movement in the district and was a member of every public body, commanding general esteem and confidence. He left four sons and a daughter.
His youngest son, Arthur James, a lawyer, married Elizabeth Isabel, granddaughter of Richard Lewis. His other children married well and their descendants continued to fill respected roles in Tasmanian society.
They included Sir Stanley Charles Burbury (1909-1995), Chief Justice of Tasmania, and the state’s first Australian-born governor (1973-82).
The Brisbane Courier (Qld) Wednesday 7th September 1921
A Remarkable Case
Unusual circumstances attended a case of false pretences heard in the Toowoomba Circuit Court yesterday, when Walter Gillett, who pleaded guilty to two separate charges, was sentenced to two years imprisonment on each charge, the sentences to be concurrent. The Crown Prosecutor (Mr Kingsbury) stated that the accused went into the Q.N. Bank Toowoomba, at a time when the regular teller was absent on holidays, and a teller from a country centre was relieving. The accused introduced himself as "Gillett, from St George" and said he was down to buy cattle at a sale in Toowoomba.
As it happened there was a resident of St George named Jillett. Accused presented that he had forgotten his cheque book, and asked the teller for a blank cheque form, and also asked him to fill it up for him. The teller filled in the form for £30, accused signed it, and the teller foolishly cashed it. Two or three days afterwards accused called at a suburban hotel in Toowoomba, where he spent money freely, and said that he was a son of the late "Mr. Jillett" of St George.
He asked the proprietor of the hotel if he would cash a cheque for him and said "the teller at the Q.N. Bank knows me. The hotelkeeper replied that he would go to the bank with him. At the bank the teller identified the "man from St George", but in this case the publican endorsed the cheque which was for £40, so he lost the money, not the tell who cashed it.
In three days the man raised £70. Mr Kingsbury said the accused was "one of those gentlemen from the South who think we are unduly lenient in Queensland". He read a list of previous convictions for forgery and uttering false pretences, against accused in New South Wales, dating from 1912. Accused had a number of aliases, said they were not sure that Gillett was his right name. None of the money obtained by accused had been refunded. His Honour, in sentencing the accused said that he was one of the unfortunate class of persons who were always signing cheques and always getting caught, and he would have to protect the community.
After marrying in 1844, Thomas accrued a considerable amount of property, including the Callington Mill flour milling business, several shops and houses, besides building a substantial stone house “Springfield” around 1848.
The family lived on the “Springfield” property, where there is an even older building, “Jillett’s Hut”, dating from 1827 or even earlier. The house still stands as the present homestead of the neighbouring large and historic St Peter’s Pass property, having been purchased in 1865 by Askin Morrison.
It seems likely that Thomas and Mary Ann cashed up their assets, intending to make a new life for their burgeoning family on mainland Australia, possibly free from the convict stain in both their families. Both returned to Tasmania in their older age and died in Hobart.
Tasman presumably grew up in the Lachlan region of NSW. There, in 1872, his father had purchased Buddyana station, moving back to Dundonald, Broadmeadows, Victoria, around 1878 and to Fernhill, Flemington in 1881. Perhaps the day-to-day operations of Buddyana were in the hands of Tasman’s older brothers.
After the sale of this property these older brothers - George (32), Henric (31), Tom (29) and Arthur (21), contracted to drive 12,500 sheep from Yanga in northern Victoria, to a property on the Warrego River in southern Queensland. Their northward journey took about 160 days with loss of 119 sheep. Their return south on horseback took 42 days. Arthur, the youngest brother on this journey kept a diary that allows one to trace their track and contains skeletal details of the trip.
Soon after this epic journey, Thomas Jillett’s family bought two stations in Queensland, Greendale near Tambo, in the Blackall region, and Cassillis near Hughenden, both apparently operated by the brothers. Arthur continued to keep diaries and his younger brother Tasman, aged nearly 19, first appears on one of several droving trips between the two properties, a distance of 389 miles (about 650 km), commencing in May 1886. Tasman was subsequently associated with various properties in the Tambo district and further afield in Queensland including: Cassilis, Greendale, Gartmore, Withersdane, Oxford Downs, Rosedale, Begonia, Chatham, Horton Green.
Tasman partnered Mary Noral Elizabeth Maitland Cairney, and had a child with her in 1896.
The child was named *Tasman Jillett Maitland Cairney and the parents never married.
Tasman served in the South African War (“Boer War”), leaving in 1902 as a private in the 4th Australian Commonwealth Horse.
He lived for some time in South Africa where, in December 1913, aged 46, he briefly married Kathleen Mary (Lola) Wood, aged 26, a vaudeville artist and pianist. Tasman returned to Australia in January 1914, the couple were separated in the following month, and he lived in Sydney until around 1920.
In June 1933, aged 66, Tasman was married for a second time, at Augathella, Queensland, to Margaret Chisler (née Ritchie), aged 48. He died, aged 90, at Brisbane in November 1957.
The lease of Greendale was applied for in 1861 by Mr Dillon, along with other leases which were disputed by Mr J.T. Allen. Mr Allen had surveyed the area personally and it appears Mr Dillon's applications were made on the survey of the explorer and landholder Mr Frederick Walker. Litigation took place with the Land Commission Rockhampton. However, due to Mr Allen's accurate description of the lands for which he had applied, he was granted the leases of "Elizabeth Creek" and "Enniskillen", while Mr Dillon held "Greendale". A considerable number of old records in the district have been destroyed by fire and Greendale is one of the 6 properties affected. The loss of these records adds to the difficulties of putting together a full and accurate history.
Ownership of Greendale passed from Mr Dillon to the New Zealand Land and Mortgage Co. In January 1881, it was reported in the hands of a Mr. Jillett of Melbourne, although the actual purchase date was sometime in 1878. There were 6 selectors, Messrs. George, Alfred Charles, Thomas Shone, Arthur James, Edward Frank and Henric Thomas Jillett. Mr Thomas Shone Jillett later purchased Chatham to reside there. Mr Arthur James Jillett lived at Wethersdane, now a portion of Isoroy, while Mr Edward Frank Jillett made his home at Greendale.
To the south and west of Tambo township, there were a large number of small freehold blocks which could have been resumed from the original Greendale leases, as paddocks for the teamsters.
One of these blocks was in the name of J. Rutherford of Cobb and Co. (This was probably the Cobb & Co "spell" horse paddock). Other blocks were held by M. Sheridan, M Palmer, M Mulhern, G foote, G Riddell, H.B. Taylor, H.T. Walsh, J.Watson, M.A. Milne, D.C.Milne, F.W. Hewson and B. Goffage. A number of these blocks have been consolidated into the present Greendale Holding.
It is reported that Greendale was the setting for one of the famous bush verses - "Saltbush Bill". Grass was often scarce on the stock route and it was the habit of drovers to cut the bottom wire of a fence to allow their sheep to stray through to the better feed in the station paddock. Saltbush Bill had done this on Greendale only to be apprehended by one of the station owners. The poem relates the ensuing fight which lasted for hours until such time as Saltbush Bill was satisfied that his sheep had had their fill.
With the loss of the country known as Isaroy, the Jillett Family purchased Gartmore. The original lease to Mr Dillion is thought to cover what is now known as Greendale and portion of Isaroy. The family of Mr Edward Frank Killett controls most of this area today. Mr. Thomas Frank Jillett at Greendale and Mr Arthur Bruce (Ned) at Uanda.
A portion of what is now Gartmore is called Haughton's Green and as George Haughton was a coach driver in 1880, he could perhaps have been an early owner.
An area of 53,000 acres, it was purchased by Jillett Bros, prior to 1920 and managed by Frank Alfred jillett, a son of (should be nephew) of Arthur James Jillett of Wethersdane.
Gartmore was sold by Mr. H Walker who carried out considerable timber treatment and pasture improvement on the property before reselling it to Lloyd Wilson, who held it for a short period.
It was subsequently sold to the present owners, the Tully family of Quilpie.
Was selected in 1880's by Ivor Peyton. Lord Bros sold it to Jillett Bros. It was the residence of Tasman Jillett. Jack, a son of Ted, took over control on the retirement of his uncle.
6 Dec 1886 Tasman: 4000 acred Greendale 2V-5329 Resumed portion of Greendale Run GF No 7
23 Oct 1886 4850 acres Greendale Portion 3V No 15GF
15 Feb 1887 Edward Selection No 61 App Carrangarra Port 8 211 acres Por 34
1st June 1888 Arthur: Lessee of 4850 acres Greendale Port 3 V GF 15
August 1888 & 1898 Arthur Greendale Run G F N 15 Port 3V Rental 1penny per acre
1909 Renewed for 1.5 pence per acre per annum
1918 Renewed for 2.25 pence per acre per annum
1921 Renewed 2.5 pence per acre per annum
1890 Edward Carrangarra Port 8 Por 34
1st Feb 1900 George purchased 3V 4850 from Arthur
1904 Lease Extension for 10 years
1900 Alfred No 8
1904 Lease extension for 10 years
1908 Lease extension 2d per acre per annum
1918 Lease extension 3d per acre per annum
July 1924 Alfred's Will Farm No 8 left to Aubrey Halloran and Edward Jillett (Trustees of will)
June 1927 GS 5330 Lease renewed 28 years No 8 Edward
March 1928 Drought relief: Part of aggregation of 5330, 5427, 5445, 5450, 5329, 5337: 26,000 acres Freehold Total 118,731 acres
1906 Tasman and George 2V and 3V (8850) acres Grant to modify fencing
24 Oct 1906 Tasman gave George GF7, 4000 acres "in consideration of love and affection" (South Afticva - Boer War)
31 Dec 1926 Lease renewed 28 years
June 1927 5337: Lessee George (part of aggregation of 6 grazing selections Greendale Holding, 26,000 acres Freehold Total Aggregation 118,731 acres
July 1925 Grazing selection No 5337 - 4850 acres 3V 2d per acre per annum
2 February 1926 Grazing selections 7,8,15,29,53,63,253,731,743
Jillett Bros: Stock partnership -- Shares due
Edward Frank Jillett 24/100 th
Arthur James Jillett 11/100th
Tasman Jillett 37/100 th
George Jillett 11/100 th
F.K. Jillett 1/100 th
Estate of A.C. Jillett 7/100 th
Estate of H.T. Jillett 3/100 th
Estate of T.S. Jillett 3/100 th
As trustees, A.C., A.J., E.f., and J. Jillett 3/100 ths
1910: Exchange 342: Greendale Holding 59 sm Rent 40 shillings Jillett Bros Alfred, Arthur, Edward and Tasman (Lessees) Wethersdane.
1911 After Court Case, surrendered 10 sq mile Greendale and got 4 sq. mile of Gartmore.
23 May 1912 Jillett Bros Lessees of Greendale Holding
8 August 1913 Jillett Bros surrendered 5678 acres of Greendale. Granted 2230 acres
1916 Gartmore: Grazing Homestead 253
Hughenden 5 April Edward: Cambridge Parish 9914 acres POrt 30 GF91
13 July 1900 Edward Port 29, GF 910, 10086 acres
31 Dec 1902 Port 10, GF917, 196961 acres Parish Burleigh transferred to Henric Jillett
4 Dec 1903 GF 917 Sold by Henric to Edward
Thanks to Ann Jillett for this information from the Jillett Diaries