George Pirkis Ibbott (Sometimes called Purkiss) was born on 30 Apr 1817 at the Old Artillary Ground, Spitalfields, in the city of London, England. His parents were John Ibbott (1765-1841) and Hannah Pirkis. When the family left England and sailed for Van Dieman’s Land in 1825, George was 7 years old, having his 8th birthday at sea. At this time, he had two brothers: John ( 12) and James (2) and one sister. It is currently unknown whether there were further siblings born in Van Dieman’s Land.
George grew up in the Bridgewater-Old Beach Region, where his father worked as the Victualler of a local pub.
When George was 15, the family moved north into the country, most likely in the Bothwell region to try their hand at farming. George’s father, John was well into his sixties by this time, but he had mature sons that would have surely been a great help.
Sarah Devine was born on 05 Sep 1823 in Van Dieman’s Land. Her parents were Thomas Devine (1798-1884) and Anne Jane Easton (1802-1873). She was a rare case of a third generation Tasmanian to be born at such an early time in Australia since the European settlement. Three of her grandparents had been sent to Australia as some of the earliest convicts and the other Grandparent’s origin is currently unknown. Sarah grew up with many brothers and sisters.
George and Sarah were married at the registrar’s office in Brighton, Van Diemon’s Land on 16 Oct 1839. Prior to their wedding, Sarah was listed as living with her father and George was listed as living at the house of Mr Broadditch at the Hunting Grounds for the previous fortnight.
George and Sarah settled in the Bothwell district where they farmed just over a decade. Six of their children were born during this time: (George 1840-1840), John Thomas (1842-), William Pirkis (1844-), Phillip Edward (1846-1916), Frederick George (1848-1890), and Charlotte Lavinia (1850-1879). The family relocated south to to Green Ponds (Now Kempton) circa 1850. Another son, George Reiby (1854-1904) was born at this time. The family relocated again soon later to Lower Jerusalem in the Campania Region north of Richmond where George farmed with his sons. Another three sons were born: Edward Henry Amos (1857-1926), Walter Valentine Francis (1859-1935) and Alfred Ernest (1868-1951).
George purchased over 2000 acres of land north of the Coal River in Lower Jerusalem which was called “Colebrookdale.” The date that he moved there is not yet known but it was listed for sale in 1855 so it is possible that he moved there as early as then. While farming, George also took up breeding of horses including prize horses. (MORE TO ADD HERE)
In late 1886, George (71) had listed Colebrookdale for sale or let, indicating that he was wanting to retire from farm work at this time. It is uncertain at this time whether the property was sold or let and then passed down to his children. George and Sarah moved to Old Beach in 1887 where George lived the remainder of his life.
George died at his residence in Old Beach on 11 Nov 1894, although there is a conflicting notice in the newspaper stating that he died at his residence in Brighton. The actual place is yet to be determined.
George was buried at St Marks Church of England, Pontville, Tas in a plot adjacent to Sarah ‘s parents just behind the church building. Sarah died on 07 Aug 1896 and was buried with her late husband.
The headstone reads:
GEORGE PIRKIS IBBOTT
Who died November 11th 1894
Aged 78 Years
Call not back the dear departed
Anchored safe where storms are o’er
On the border land we left him,
Soon to meet and part no more
Far beyond this world of changes
Far beyond this world of care
We shall find our missing loved one
In our fathers mansion fair.
Wife of the above born Sep 5th 1825
Died August 7th 1896
Aged 75 years.
(Transcribed by ErnestfromAus on 25 Jul 2017).
Their Grandson, Sgt Walter Gordon Dagleish Ibbott (1885-1916) served in the Great War (Service Number 6570). He contracted coxemia at sea while en route. He has a Tasmanian memorial at the Solder’s Walk in Queen’s Domain, Hobart.
Their Grandson, George John Ibbott (1887-1961) served in the 46th Battalion in the Great War (Service Number 1609)
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