Torr Story

Mrs. Richard Dale left by the Ormuz last week. Prior to going, she told a representative of THE CRITIC the following interesting story:—”I came out to Australia,” she said, “six months ago to see my aged mother and my brothers and sisters, and, as neither they nor I are any longer young, it is more than probable we shall never meet again. Nearly all the Torrs live to ripe old age. My mother is now 95 years old. Her sight has greatly failed of late, but otherwise she is hearty and well. My eldest sister is over 70, and, with the exception of my father, who died a few years ago, all of the family to which I belong are still living. Torr blood pulsates through the veins of more than one hundred souls in South Australia. My late father was engaged in mining when the Burra Burra mine was in full swing; three girls and four boys made up our happy family then. My eldest sister is now the widow of the late Mr. James Brown, of “Montrose,” Mintaro, which property adjoins Sir Samuel Way’s Kadlunga estate. When I first knew it it was used as a depot for the mule teams, which were imported from either Spain or South America, I forget which, to pack copper—and afterwards to cart it in wagons—from the Burra to Port Wakefield. My uncle, “Old King Torr”—he always went by that name—lived for many years in Mintaro, and my nephew, Professor Jethro Brown, of the Adelaide University, was born there. Another of my nephews now lives at Montrose, and he aspires to becoming a breeder of prize sheep. My sister had a large family, and they promise to do likewise. My husband was one of the earliest bush missionaries north of the Burra; that is over 40 years ago, and it was about that time I met my fate. We went to live at Crystal Brook Station, which was then owned by the Bowman Brothers. They (the Bowmans) made lots of money in those days, and the cheque they paid for Poltalloch, a station in the South-East, was the largest ever drawn in South Australia up to that time, and was as much talked of then as the cheque recently drawn by the Price Government in payment for the Adelaide trams. Until six months ago I had not seen many of my relatives for 28 long years.”