Donald Nicholson
(1761-1851)
Mary Margaret MacDougall
(1770-Cir 1841)

Donald Nicholson
(1812-1899)

 

Family Links

Spouses/Children:
1. Margaret Francis (Fanny) Brown

Donald Nicholson

  • Born: 12 Jan 1812, Assynt, Sutherlandshire, Scotland UK
  • Christened: 31 Dec 1812, Assynt, Sutherlandshire, Scotland UK
  • Marriage (1): Margaret Francis (Fanny) Brown on 19 Mar 1841 in Scots Presbyterian Church, Pitt St, Sydney, NSW Australia
  • Died: 3 Nov 1899, Byrock, near Cobar, NSW Australia at age 87

  Research Notes:

Jason Crosskey passed on a website by Tim Hill where it is noted:
Donald was born on 12 January 1812 at the parish of Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland. The parish of Assynt is on the remote north-western coast of Scotland. A few years before Donald's birth, the local Minister described it as "consisting of lofty mountains, high hills, stupendous rocks, threatening precipices and numerous objects of the like kind." The weather is cold and bleak, and "the rain continues not only for hours, but often for days; nay for weeks..."
In the early nineteenth century most of the county's 3,000 inhabitants lived on the coast, sustaining themselves with fishing and sheep farming. The main village in the parish was Loch Inver, with "a small harbour with a pier" as well as "several good houses and shops, and near it is a manufactory for preserving butcher's meat, fish, and vegetables, fresh, for the purposes of being carried out to sea". There was also a post-office and a preaching station by 1851. At this time, Loch Inver had a population of 75. He was the son of Donala Nicholson and Mary Margaret MacDougall. Donald Nicholson was baptised on 31 January 1812 at Asssynt, Sutherland, Scotland.
Nothing is known of Donald's early life except that he probably learnt his carpentry trade at the side of his father, a ship's carpenter & boat builder.
At the age of 26 Donald Nicholson emmigrated from Lochinver, the parish of Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland, on 21 October 1838 on the James Moran a 600 ton bark with his older sister Fanny, her husband Thomas and their children. The James Moran, largely carried those subject to the Highland clearances, and came via Rev. John Dunmore Lang's bounty scheme. After a voyage of 113 days (almost four months) Donald arrived at Port Jackson, on 11 February 1839. The vessel called at the Cape of Good Hope from late December to the 2nd of January 1839. Whilst there, some of the passengers wrote a letter to the Commissioner of Emigration in Scotland, complimenting the food, the Surgeon and the Master, and expressing a hope that their comments would relieve "a dread of the hardships they may be made to endure on the passage". At the Cape they picked up 20 survivors from the wreck of the Dunlop and conveyed them to Port Jackson. Unfortunately, his youngest nephew Malcolm died on the voyage.
Donald (and his sister's husband Thomas) were brought out by Mr. H. Scope of Liverpool and were to be paid 2 pounds and 2 shillings a week, without board. There was an undertaker named Henry Scope in Liverpool; were Donald and Thomas employed to make coffins for him? Henry Scope later described himself as a builder but was insolvent a few short years later in March 1842. Nothing certain is known of his first few years in the colony.
He lived in March 1841 at Parramatta, NSW. His wife-to-be Margaret also lived in Parramatta before they were married. She had arrived from Liverpool on the Heber a few months after Donald had arrived.
He marriedMargaret Brown, daughter of John Brown and Margaret Miller, in a Presbyterian ceremony at Scots Church, Pitt Street on Friday, 19 March 1841 at Sydney, NSW. He was 29 and his wife Margaret was 22. After their marriage Donald and Margaret lived in Parramatta at least until the start of the new year. Witnesses to the wedding were Thomas MacKenzie. He was a witness at John Chalmers and Jessie Brown's wedding on 7 June 1841 at St Andrew's Scots Presbyterian Church in Sydney. Donald, at age 29 and Margaret Brown, at age 23 became the parents of Malcolm Nicholson on 30 December 1841 at Parramatta, NSW. Malcolm, who died young, was to be the first of at least ten children born to Donald and Margaret between 1841 and 1859. Nine survived to adulthood. Donald's child Malcom received his baptism on 2 January 1842 at St Johns Parramatta, Sydney Presbyterian. This seems to be the first baptism of the year in the church.11 Donald Nicholson was a carpenter, and was to remain at this trade (sometimes calling himself a joiner or house carpenter) for all of his working life.
Within two years of their marriage, Donald and Margaret's growing family had moved to Balmain. Also in Balmain were Margaret's family and their growing families. He and Margaret Brown lived in 1844 at Waterview Bay, Balmain. Waterview Bay (now called Mort Bay) is an area of Balmain where a few boat builders had established small businesses along the waterfront. There is a Nicholson Street, leading down to the edge of this bay in East Balmain that has been there since the 1880's at least.

Another four years found them in the Yass district at Archibald MacCallum's "Good-Hope" homestead where their fifth child, John, was baptised.15

Donald Nicholson and Margaret Brown lived in June 1850 at the NSW country town of Bowning, New South Wales <../pd1.htm>. Donald Nicholson and Margaret Brown lived in October 1852 at Yass, New South Wales <../pd4.htm>.

Donald provided information for the birth of Frances Nicholson <../g0/p288.htm>, on 30 November 1856 at Yass, New South Wales <../pd4.htm>, at the age of 44.16 Donald's child Frances received her baptism on 21 March 1857 at Yass, New South Wales <../pd4.htm>. It is unusual that she was baptised as Church of England - the other children of Donald & Margaret were baptised as Presbyterians.17 They remained in this district, later at Bowning.18 Donald Nicholson and Margaret Brown lived in January 1859 at Limestone Creek, in the district of Yass, New South Wales <../pd2.htm>.19 Donald Nicholson and Margaret Brown lived in October 1865 at South Lead, in Forbes, New South Wales <../pd2.htm>. Donald and Margaret were to remain residents of the town for at least three years.20

Donald, as the father of the bride, hosted Margaret Nicholson <../g0/p456.htm> and Hugh Joseph Sutherland <../g0/p465.htm>'s wedding on 31 October 1865 at Forbes, New South Wales <../pd2.htm>.21

13 October 1870 Donald's unwed daughter Susannah gave birth to a son, Fredrick Hilton Nicholson. She was 19.22 By the middle of 1871, Donald and Margaret's son Donald had moved to Sydney, and had there married Annie Smyth in a Church of England ceremony. Two months later another son, James, married Lydia Hosnell in Bathurst in a Roman Catholic ceremony.23,24 He and Margaret Brown lived in September 1872 at Bushman's Lead, New South Wales <../pd1.htm>.25 Donald, as the father of the bride, attended Mary Jane Nicholson <../g0/p286.htm> and Henry Olliver <../g0/p340.htm>'s wedding on 8 September 1872 at her father's house, in Bushman's Lead, New South Wales <../pd1.htm>.25

His wife Margaret died 22 May 1874, leaving him a widower at age 62. Margaret had been involved in a carriage accident some 3 weeks earlier, but had deteriorated rapidly inthe days before her death.26,27 Margaret's death would have been about the time that their daughter Susannah found out she was pregnant again - and still unmarried. Donald Nicholson lived in December 1874 at Parkes, New South Wales <../pd3.htm>.28 Donald hosted the wedding of his daughter Susannah on Boxing day, 1874. With the recent death of his wife, and the unwed Susannah's growing pregnancy, the later half of this year must have been difficult for Donald. The end of this long day saw the baby born and Susannah married to Michael Bourke, a miner..29,28 He witnessed his grandson James John Bourke <../g0/p291.htm>'s burial on 19 May 1876 Goobang Creek cemetery at Parkes, New South Wales <../pd3.htm>. No Minister attended the burial..30

The last of his daughters, Fanny, was married in Forbes in October 1876. Donald may well have attended the wedding..31 Donald, as the father of the bride, attended Frances Nicholson and John William Aplett <../g0/p368.htm>'s wedding on 18 November 1876 at Forbes, New South Wales <../pd2.htm>. The marriage took place at the home of Henry Clancy in Browne Street.32,33 At this time his occupation was given as a carpenter.34 Donald Nicholson lived in 1878 at Parkes, NSW <../pd3.htm>.34 Donald's daughter Margaret died in childbirth at Cobar in 1883 at the age of 38.35 Three months later his daughter Susannah's husband died of alcoholic poisoning at the age of 36.36.

It isn't clear what happened to Donald in the next 16 years, but it is likely that his advancing lead him to greater dependency on his children, especially perhaps his youngest daughter Fanny.

Donald died on 3 November 1899 at Byrock, New South Wales <../pd1.htm>, at age 87 of senile decay. His daughter Fanny stated that he had been deteriorating over the last three years of his life.37 His body was interred at Byrock Cemetery on 4 November 1899 at Byrock, New South Wales <../pd1.htm>. However, there is some confusion about where he is buried. A record exists in Cobar Shire cemetery's register for a 'Donald Nichollson'in 1899, but his death certificate indicates he was buried at 'Byerock cemetery' which is about 120km distant. However, his name does not seem to recorded on the registers for Byrock cemetery..38,37,39

  Noted events in his life were:

connection. The connection between Annette Nicholson & myself is as follows:
Annette Nicholson . . .
Is linked in some way to Donald Nicholson (1812)
He had Margaret Nicholson (c1847) who married Hugh Suthererland (1841)
They had Alexandra Sutherland (1869) who married Henry Rogers (1866)
His father was George Rogers (c1834) who married Margaret Ramsay (1835) who also married Andrew Ramsay
They had Andrina Ramsay (1850) who married Alfred Stafford (1853)
His father was John Stafford (1834)
His father was William Stafford (1811) who married Elizabeth Goodall (1814) & they also had William Stafford (1842)
He had Eva Stafford (1874) who married Arthur Clinton (1868)
They had James Clinton (1895) who married Martha Walker (1901)
Her father was Thomas Walker (1854)
His father was William Walker (1820) & he also had Martha Walker (1865) who married John Sutherland (1861)
His father was John Sutherland (1829) who married Margaret Elliot (1835)
They had Elizabeth Sutherland (1863) who married John Nicol (1844)
They had Margaret Nicol (1889) who married G. A. Davies (1925)
He had Colin Davies (1925)
He had me - Robyn Bray (nee Davies) (1950)

fact. 917 Tim Hill notes:
Donald was born on Sunday, 12 January 1812 at the Parish of Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland. He was the son of Donald Nicholson and Mary Margaret MacDolugall. He was baptised on Thursday, 31 December 1812 at the Parish of Assynet, Sutherland. The parish of Assynt is on the remote north-western coast of Scotland. A few years before Donald's birth, the local Minister described it as "..consisting of lofty mountains, high hills, stupendous rocks, threatening precipices and numerous objects of the like kind." The weather is cold and bleak, and "the rain continues not only for hours, but often for days; nay for weeks..."
In the early nineteenth century most of the county's 3,000 inhabitants lived on the coast, sustaining themselves with fishing and sheep farming. The main village in the parish was Loch Inver, with "a small harbour with a pier" as well as "several good houses and shops, and near it is a manufactory for preserving butcher's meat, fish, and vegetables, fresh, for the purposes of being carried out to sea". There was also a post-office and a preaching station by 1851. At this time, Loch Inver had a population of 75.
Nothing is known of Donald's early life except that he probably learnt his carpentry trade at the side of his father, a ship's carpenter & boat builder.
At the age of 26 Donald Nicholson emmigrated from Lochinver on 21 October 1838 on the James Moran a 600 ton bark with his older sister Fanny, her husband Thomas and their children. The James Moran, largely carried those subject to the Highland clearances, and came via Rev. John Dunmore Lang's bounty scheme. After a voyage of 113 days (almost four months) Donald arrived at Port Jackdon, NSW on 11 February 1839. The vessel called at the Cape of Good Hope from late December to the 2nd of January 1839. Whilst there, some of the passengers wrote a letter to the Commissioner of Emigration in Scotland, complimenting the food, the Surgeon and the Master, and expressing a hope that their comments would relieve "a dread of the hardships they may be made to endure on the passage". At the Cape they picked up 20 survivors from the wreck of the Dunlop and conveyed them to Port Jackson. Unfortunately, his youngest nephew Malcolm died on the voyage.
Donald (and his sister's husband Thomas) were brought out by Mr. H. Scope of Liverpool and were to be paid 2 pounds and 2 shillings a week, without board. There was an undertaker named Henry Scope in Liverpool; were Donald and Thomas employed to make coffins for him? Henry Scope later described himself as a builder but was insolvent a few short years later in March 1842. Nothing certain is known of his first few years in the colony.
Donald lived in March 1841 at Parramatta, NSW. His wife-to-be Margaret also lived in Parramatta before they were married. She had arrived from Liverpool on the Heber a few months after Donald had arrived.
He married Margaret Brown, daughter of John Brown and Margaret Miller, in a Presbyterian ceremony at Free Presbyterian Church in Pitt Street on Friday, 19 March 1841 at Sydney. He was 29 and his wife Margaret was 22. After their marriage Donald and Margaret lived in Parramatta at least until the start of the new year. Witnesses to the wedding was thomas MacKenzie. Donald Nicholson was a witness at the wedding of John Chalmers and Jessie Brown at St. Andrew's Scots Presbyterian Church on Monday, 7 June 1841 at Sydney. Donald, aged 29 and Margaret Brown, aged 23 became the parents of Malcolm Nicholson on Thursday, 30 December 1841 at Parramatta, NSW. Donald's child Malcom received his baptism at St. John's on Sunday, 2 January 1842 at Parramatta Presbyterian. This seems to be the first baptism of the year in the church. Donald Nicholson was a carpenter in January 1842 at Parramatta and was to remain at this trade (sometimes calling himself a joiner or house carpenter) for all of his working life.12 Donald's child James received his baptism at St. Andrew's Scots Presbyterian Church on Friday, 5 May 1843 at Sydney.
Within two years of their marriage, Donald and Margaret's growing family had moved to Balmain. Also in Balmain were Margaret's family and their growing families. Donald and Margaret lived in 1844 at Waterview Bay, Balmain. Waterview Bay (now called Mort Bay) is an area of Balmain where a few boat builders had established small businesses along the waterfront. There is a Nicholson Street, leading down to the edge of this bay in East Balmain that has been there since the 1880's at least. Donald's child Donald received his baptism on Wednesday, 5 August 1846 at Sydney.
Another two years found them in the Yass district at Archibald MacCallum's "Good-Hope" homestead. They became close to this family in some way, naming their daughter Susannah after the MacCallums recently died teenage daughter (and later Susannah was to also name her children after this family too). Donald's child John received his baptism at Bungonia on Tuesday, 30 May 1848 at Goulburn, NSW.
Donald and Margaret lived in June 1850 at the country town of Bowning, NSW. Donald's child Susannah received her baptism on Sunday, 16 June 1850 at Yass, NSW. Donald's child Mary received her baptism on Sunday, 10 October 1852 at Yass. She was baptised in a Presbyterian ceremony. Donald and Margaret lived in October 1852 at Yass.
Donald's child Charles received his baptism on Sunday, 18 February 1855 at Yass. Donald provided information for the birth of Frances Nicholson on 30 November 1856 at Yass at the age of 44. Donald's child Frances received her baptism on Saturday, 21 March 1857 at Yass. It is unusual that she was baptised as Church of England - the other children of Donald & Margaret were baptised as Presbyterians. They remained in this district, later at Bowning. Donald provided information for the birth of Daniel Malcolm McBean Nicholson on 6 January 1859 at Limestone Creek in the District of Yass at the age of 46. The 'McBean' part of his name was due to a grazier named William McBean who settled in the Yass area. He along with several others including Daniel's father Donald were the main instigators in the establishment of the Presbyterian Church in Yass (where Daniel was baptised). Donald and Margaret lived in January 1859 at Limestone Creek. Donald and Margaret lived in October 1865 at South Lead in Forbes, NSW. Donald and Margaret were to remain residents of the town for at least three years.
Donald, as the father of the bride, along with Margaret attended Margaret Nicholson's and Hugh Jones' wedding at the house of Donald Nicholson on Tuesday, 31 October 1865 at Forbes. Hugh was a wheelwright from Scotland.
Unwed daughter Susannah gave birth to a son, Fredrick Hilton Nicholson. She was 19. Donald Nicholson and Margaret Brown moved with their younger children to Bushman's Lead, NSW in 1871. They made the move just after gold had been discovered, when the town consisted of a butcher's shop, a bakery and a few houses which the hardy pioneers had constructed from the timber around them. By the middle of 1871, Donald and Margaret's son Donald had moved to Sydney, and had there married Annie Smyth in a Church of England ceremony. Two months later another son, James, married Lydia Hosnell in Bathurst in a Roman Catholic ceremony. Donald and Margaret lived in September 1872 at Bushman's Lead, NSW. Donald, as the father of the bride, along with Margaret attended Mary Jane Nicholson and Henry Olliver's wedding at her father's house on Sunday, 8 September 1872 at Bushman's Lead.
His wife Margaret died 22 May 1874 at the age of 56, leaving him a widower at age 62. Margaret had been involved in a carriage accident some 3 weeks earlier, but had deteriorated rapidly in the days before her death. Margaret's death would have been about the time that their daughter Susannah found out she was pregnant again - and still unmarried. Donald, as the father of the bride, attended Susannah Alletta Nicholson and Michael Bourke's wedding at her father's house on Saturday, 26 December 1874 at Parkes, NSW. Michael was a miner.Donald hosted the wedding of his daughter Susannah on Boxing day, 1874. With the recent death of his wife, and the unwed Susannah's growing pregnancy, the later half of this year must have been difficult for Donald. The end of this long day saw the baby born and Susannah married to Michael Bourke, a miner. Donald Nicholson witnessed his grandson James John Bourke's burial on 19 May 1876 Goobang Creek cemetery at Parkes. No Minister attended the burial.
The youngest of his daughters, Fanny, was married in Forbes in October 1876. Donald may well have attended the wedding. Donald, as the father of the bride, attended Frances Nicholson and John William Aplett's wedding on Saturday, 18 November 1876 at Forbes. The marriage took place at the home of Henry Clancy in Browne Street. Donald lived in 1878 at Parkes. At this time his occupation was given as a carpenter. Donald's daughter Margaret died in childbirth at Cobar in 1883 at the age of 38. Three months later his daughter Susannah's husband died of alcoholic poisoning at the age of 36.
It isn't clear what happened to Donald in the next 16 years, but it is likely that his advancing age lead him to greater dependency on his children, especially perhaps his youngest daughter Fanny.
Donald died on 3 November 1899 at Byrock, NSW at age 87 of senile decay. His daughter Fanny stated that he had been deteriorating over the last three years of his life. His body was interred at Byrock Cemetery on 4 November 1899. However, there is some confusion about where he is buried. A record exists in Cobar Shire cemetery's register for a 'Donald Nichollson' in 1899, but his death certificate indicates he was buried at 'Byerock cemetery' which is about 120km distant. However, his name does not seem to recorded on the registers for Byrock cemetery.

connection. Annette & Kenneth Nicholson are linked to me in the following way:
Kenneth Nicholson (c1950) married Annette? (c1950)
His father was Laurence Nicholson (1918)
His father was John Nicholson (1866)
His father was Daniel Nicholson (1859)
His father was Donald Nicholson (1812) & he also had Margaret Nicholson (c1847) who married Hugh Sutherland (1841)
They had Alexandra Sutherland (1869) who married Henry Rogers (1866)
His father was George Rogers (c1834) who married Margaret Ramsay (1835) who also married Andrew Ramsay
They had Andrina Ramsay (1850) who married Alfred Stafford (1853)
His father was John Stafford (1834)
His father was William Stafford (1811) who married Elizabeth Goodall (1814) & they also had William Stafford (1842)
He had Eva Stafford (1874) who married Arthur Clinton (1868)
They had James Clinton (1895) who married Martha Walker (1901)
Her father was Thomas Walker (1854)
His father was William Walker (1820) & he also had Martha Walker (1865) who married John Sutherland (1861)
His father was John Sutherland (1829) who married Margaret Elliot (1835)
They had Elizabeth Sutherland (1863) who married John Nicol (1844)
They had Margaret Nicol (1889) who married G. A. Davies (1925)
He had Colin Davies (1925)
He had me - Robyn Bray (nee Davies) (1950)


Donald married Margaret Francis (Fanny) Brown, daughter of John Brown and Margaret Miller, on 19 Mar 1841 in Scots Presbyterian Church, Pitt St, Sydney, NSW Australia. (Margaret Francis (Fanny) Brown was born on 14 May 1818 in Inverness, Inverness-Shire Scotland,917 died on 22 May 1874 in Parkes, NSW Australia and was buried on 24 May 1874 in Goobang Creek Cemetery, Parkes, NSW Australia.)


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