Alexander Riach
Janet Sharpe
James Riach
Mary Chapman

Helen (Ellen) Eleanor Riach


Family Links

1. William Thain

2. George Nicol

Helen (Ellen) Eleanor Riach 7

  • Born: 12 Aug 1816, Forgue, near Banff, Scotland Parish of Banchory Ternan
  • Christened: 17 Aug 1816, Church of Scotland, Forgue Parish County, Aberdeen Scotland
  • Partnership (1): William Thain circa 1837
  • Marriage (2): George Nicol on 26 Aug 1838 in Forgue, Aberdeenshire Scotland
  • Died: 15 Jan 1892, Appin, Campbelltown, Sydney, NSW Australia at age 75
  • Buried: 16 Jan 1892, Congregational Cemetery, Campbelltown, Sydney, NSW Australia (now adjacent to the catholic school)

   Cause of her death was influenza.

   Another name for Helen was (Helen) Ellen Reach.

  General Notes:

Arrived in Australia 16th January 1839

  Noted events in her life were:

Emigration. Arrived in Australia 16 January, 1839 on the Alfred
The "Alfred" sailed from Gravesend on 8th September 1838, and called at Plymouth, England on 17th September 1838, where George and Ellen boarded for the trip to Sydney.

The "Alfred" was a full rigged barque of 716 tons, built in India in 1818 of teak, and sheathed with copper against marine borers. A breakdown of the passenger list shows:

- Adult males84
- Adult females80
- Children under 439
- Children 4-830
- Children 8-1521A total of 254
The Captain of the vessel was Captain Flint, and the surgeon in charge, who appears to have occupied a most responsible position, was Samuel Maberly. The trip took 120 days during which time there was little sickness, mainly due to the change of diet, however despite this 20 passengers did die on the trip.

Strict rules were observed on Board. Each person had to be out of bed by 7:00am and all beds rolled and taken on deck for airing. Breakfast was at 8:00 and cleaning commenced shortly after. Men were appointed on rosters for cleaning and could earn $6 on the trip to be paid on arrival in Sydney.
Each week the surgeon would select two men to see the provisions weighed, and daily school was conducted for the children. Spirits were forbidden and smoking allowed only at the discretion of the surgeon.

Passengers were required to attend a church service on Sunday morning, and the behaviour and the morals of the passengers were strictly regulated. Opposite sexes were not allowed to visit each others sleeping apartments unless approved by the surgeon. The penalty for contravening regulations such as these was to have one's wine stopped for the rest of the voyage.

One of the children born on board was Mary Nicol, first child of George and Ellen, who was born at sea on 29th December 1838. Mary was to be the first child baptised at St. Marks Church of England, Appin NSW. At the time of baptism on 10th March 1839 the present church building was at least a year away from being commenced and almost four years from dedication, which took place on 25th April 1843. No doubt there was a temporary church building which was used at that time.

The "Commercial Journal and Advertiser" published Wednesday 16th January 1839 reported "arrived late last night, the ship Alfred, with emigrants".

Family legend has it that they walked all the way to Campbelltown after arriving in Sydney. Some of us might think that would not have been so, and why would they not have caught a coach. This was precisely my own thoughts, until I noticed an advertisement in the earlier mentioned "Commercial Journal and Advertiser".

This was an advertisement by one Mr George Watkins, announcing the commencement of a coach service from Campbelltown to Sydney and return commencing 31st January 1839, "leaving Campbelltown at 5am, arriving Sydney 10am. Leaving Sydney again at 4pm and arriving Campbelltown at 10pm. Campbelltown bookings through Mr Hurley and Mr Fennell". In other words George and Ellen had arrived two weeks before a regular coach run began.
In any event George and Ellen and the baby made their way to Campbelltown where he had arranged employment as a farming overseer on the property "DENFIELD" just south of Campbelltown.
In about 1855-1857 George Nicol purchased subdivided acreage on Macquariedale Road at Appin, part of an original grant on 20th June 1816 from Governor Macquarie to William Broughton, and named "Macquariedale". George's portion was then named NETHERDALE.

George Nicol grew wheat on the Appin property, as did many farmers in the area after James Ruse pioneered its growth in the Campbelltown area. In the four decades from 1840 to 1880 agriculture in the area bloomed then failed. Rust was the main disease to hit the wheat crops and farmers did not have the solutions which exist today. During this period George, then in his 60's, handed over the running of the property to his eldest son John. It is believed that John and his family suffered greatly from the hardship and privations which effected many farmers at that time.

John died in 1911 and it is believed that "Netherdale" passed on to his only son, Frank Jenner NICOL, who died in WW1 in France, as it is mentioned in Frank's Will dated 15th September 1915, in that his "legal share of proceeds of the sale of Netherdale - a farm at Appin" is left to his wife Beatrice.

Residence. Living at Appin Road when John was born
resided at 'Netherdale', Appin

Helen had a relationship with William Thain, son of William Thain and Agnes Henderson, circa 1837. (William Thain was born on 31 Aug 1816 in Kildrummy, Aberdeenshire Scotland and died on 13 Dec 1904 in Kildrummy, Aberdeenshire Scotland.)

Helen next married George Nicol, son of Walter Nicol and Christian Conn, on 26 Aug 1838 in Forgue, Aberdeenshire Scotland. (George Nicol was born on 16 Oct 1810 in Banff, Banffshire Scotland or Deskford, christened on 21 Oct 1810 in Church of Scotland, Banff Scotland, died on 20 Apr 1895 in Kildare Cottage Appin Rd Campbelltown, NSW Australia and was buried on 21 Apr 1895 in Congregational Cemetery, Campbelltown, Sydney, NSW Australia (now adjacent to the catholic school) 6.). The cause of his death was Brights Disease & Asthma.

  Noted events in their marriage were:

source. & "Bakers, Bishops and Bushrangers" by Robert J Williams


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