Long links to the land at Bell
The young, newly-married couple, Angus and Christina, decided to embark on a new adventure in a distant land.
They were married in 1851 at Kilmaneeroch, Scotland. Christina McTavish’s father was a lock keeper on the Caledonian Canal while Angus McPhee’s father was a farmer.
This profession was to follow through in many of their descendants in the raw, new country where they were headed
They arrived in Brisbane aboard the sailing ship Caroline during November 1853 with their infant daughter.
They were eventually to have a family of five sons and three daughters. Some of their descendants still live in the area where they finally settled.
They moved to Jondaryan Station where Angus, being from a rural background, was engaged in farming work
The family stayed at Jondaryan for several years but no doubt Angus could see the advantages of owning his own land.
In 1871 they made the decision to take up two blocks of land in the Dalby Land Agents district with a total area of about 300 acres.
This was in an district north of Dalby back towards the ranges know as Cattle Creek. This area was to progress and after the railway arrived, it became the Bell district.
They fenced the area beside Koondai-i Creek so it could be stocked with sheep. The fence was partly wallaby proof and partly a two rail construction.
By 1872 their home was a slab hut consisting of four rooms. It was a lonely life for the family as the only transport was by bullock wagon or horse transport.
Their supplies came from Dalby and their mail was delivered to Jimbour Station.
The family dug a fairly deep well for their water supply. The McPhee family lived at home until their daughter married another early selector, James Cody.
Their eldest son Alexander selected land for himself in 1876 and the other two sons John and Angus Jr, did likewise a few years later.
Life together for Angus and Christina was coming to an end.
Six to seven years after settling on their new block she became ill for about 12 months and died from a stroke on January 7, 1878 at the age of 45 years. She was buried in the Jimbour Station cemetery along with many of the other early pioneers.
It was a severe loss for Angus but his two daughters helped him care for the home until one, Christina, married Sam Bradley who was another early settler.
As the years passed the family married and settled on other selections.
Angus remained on his original property until he died in 1902 at the age of 85. He was buried under a kurrajong tree on his land down by the creek that heads in the Bunya Mountains.
His property passed to his son Colin and has remained in the family ever since.
The descendants of Angus and Christina have been very much part of Bell and district for almost 150 years and is a wonderful legacy.