Lockdown is a good time to catch up on a bit of family history …
Say hello to my great-grandfather and my great-granduncle, James and John Douglas.
Looking like something out of Peaky Blinders, I can still see some family resemblances
Both were born in County Down, east of Belfast in Northern Ireland (an area settled by the Scotts in the 1620s). In their early 20s, back in 1864, they sailed on the “Great Britain” from Liverpool to Melbourne (a 90-day trip).
This was the time of the Victorian gold rush. They both ended up buying land west of Bendigo to farm on. That’s where my mum, Joyce Douglas, was born.
I would have loved to have sat down and had a good yarn with James and John. Nevertheless, you’ve got to admire their courage. They inspire me.
“A ship in harbour is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.” John A. Shedd.
NEXT: My Scottish Roots.