Guest Speaker 6 Mar 2018; Grahame Thom: The Role of DNA in Family History Research



There was a time when the letters “DNA” meant nothing to most of us – but now it is common knowledge that DNA is what we are all made up of. And that is what makes it so fascinating.

At the next general meeting of the Historical Society, our chief researcher, Grahame Thom will speak on the topic “Is DNA useful in family history research?” A question many of us will have asked but not had an answer.

Graeme has recently had his DNA tested by three different family history companies. His decision was made as being a family historian he felt it would be good to have his DNA recorded for use by future generations; to see what the results revealed as to the origins of his paternal and maternal lines and to see if any matches to other persons who had been tested were revealed.

Everyone is welcome to come along on Tuesday 6 March at 7.30 pm at the Kilmore Courthouse to learn more – and the answers to the questions that Grahame posed for himself.

The meeting will begin at 7:30 and end at approximately 9 – 9:30, with time for questions and general business.

Supper will be served after the meeting and all are welcome to participate.


Tuesday Tip 20

No 20 – Hospitals

It was during 1854 that Kilmore locals formed a committee to establish a hospital. At first, a temporary hospital was established in private homes. Honorary services were provided by Doctors Beavan, Bindley and Nicholson.

The committee arranged for a Melbourne Architectural firm to call tenders in December 1858. A local builder, J Mahoney, was successful and the foundation stone was laid on 17 March 1859.

Although not complete, the first patients were admitted on transfer from the temporary hospital in January 1860. This blue stone building remains in use today known as the East Wing, see 1860 image below. The location of the foundation stone is not known, but could be still extant at the east end where the ground has been partially built up with soil.

During 1860 eigthtysix patients were admitted. In 1867 a tender was accepted for the erection of a new two storied bluestone wing. Both wings today are used for administration services. Over the years there have been a number of additions as the Hospital continues to serve Kilmore and District.

It was not until the mid-1930s that a maternity ward was erected. Prior to then mothers either had their babies born at home or in small private hospitals operated by midwives. Also it was unusual for children to be admitted in the 1800s. To read more about the Kilmore and District Hospital and other health services see Maya Tucker’s chapter Tickets to Health, in her book Kilmore on the Sydney road, (1988) pages 108-123.

In relation to hospital records, the Hospital holds a good collection of old documents. Steps are now being taken to digitise these records. Our Society holds an idexed typed copy of the Day Book Register for 1860 to 1881. These are very useful for local and family history research, see sample page below.

Grahame Thom, research officer KHS

East Wing of Kilmore Hospital about 1860
Page from Day Register
Today, looking south from front fence at the oldest part of the Kilmore Hospital’s East Wing built 1859/60
Looking at the west side of the old hospital
Looking south from street

Tuesday Tip 19

No 19 – Newspapers

By far the most important web site for researching old Australia newspapers is the National Library of Australia site called Trove. This site has many sections, including old newspapers, which can be seen by clicking on the first link below. Although this page has a search facility, for newspapers it is best to use Trove’s advanced search page, click on second link below

Here you will be able to search and read the following Kilmore papers.

Kilmore Free Press and Bourke and Dalhousie Advertiser 1865
Kilmore Free Press and Counties of Bourke and Dalhousie Advertiser 1865-1868
Kilmore Free Press 1870-1954
Kilmore Advertiser 1915-1918

See several images below. Our Society holds the following newspapers on microfilm, although some runs are not complete.

Examiner and McIvor Weekly Journal – limited issues in 1856
Kilmore Advertiser 1874-1934
Kilmore Examiner – limited issues in 1856
Kilmore Free Press 1865-1970
Kilmore Standard of Freedom – five issues in 1855
Lancefield Chronicle 1870-1873
Lancefield Examiner 1872-1882
Lancefield Mercury 1876-1920

Also held are hard copies of

Kilmore Free Press 1966-30 August 2015 (ceased publication)
North Central Review 2004-Present

Grahame Thom, research officer KHS

KILMORE ADVERTISER – 9 November 1917





Guest Speaker 6 Feb 2018; Owen Smith: Two Smiths of Carrick


The first General Meeting for the year is on Tuesday 6th February at 7.30 pm in the Kilmore Courthouse – everyone is welcome.

Owen Smith is our guest speaker, presenting “Two Smiths of Carrick”. He will tell the story of two young Irish men who venture to the antipodes from their home town of Carrickmacross, in County Monaghan, in the north of Ireland at a time when their country was reeling from the deprivations of the Great Famine and British occupation.

One is from a privileged background and is soon teaching as Classics Master at Scotch College; the second a blacksmith, becomes a successful farmer and raises a family in Kilmore. We look forward to hearing Owen tell their stories.

The meeting will begin at 7:30 and end at approximately 9 – 9:30, with time for questions and general business.

Supper will be served after the meeting and all are welcome to participate.

Upcoming Events for 2018

Happy New Year!

We hope that everyone has had an enjoyable Christmas and New Year.

Whilst the Society does not re-open till February 6th, we would just like to provide a reminder of our upcoming meetings and talks when we do.

  • Tuesday, 6 February 2018: Owen Smith – ‘Two Smiths of Carrick’
  • Tuesday, 6 March 2018: Tour of Christ Church Anglican Church, Kilmore
  • Tuesday, 3 April 2018: Graeme Thom – ‘Is DNA useful in family history research?’
  • Tuesday, 1 May 2018: Allan Stute on the Stute Family

Meetings are held at the old Courthouse at 4 Powlett St, Kilmore (unless notified differently) and begin at 7:30 and end at approximately 9 – 9:30, with time for questions and general business.

Supper is served afterwards and all are welcome to participate.

KHS Open Day, 21 Oct 2017: History’s Mysteries

Police Station, Law Court, Post Office, Kilmore circa 1904

The  Kilmore Historical Society invites you to visit the Kilmore Courthouse on Saturday, 21st October, 2017 between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. to view our Historical Photographic Collection.

Many of these photographs are unidentified people or locations in Kilmore, Wallan and other local areas.

Maybe you can help us put names to some of them.

Email :

Celebrating History Week 2017

Guest Speaker 3 October 2017; Kylie McKay and Bob Tomkins: Observations of a Long Lost Railway



Members of the Kilmore Historical Society and visitors are encouraged to attend our next General Meeting which will be held in the Kilmore Courthouse at 7.30 pm on Tuesday 3rd October. Railway enthusiasts will be particularly interested in the story that Kylie McKay and Bob Tomkins of the Romsey Lancefield and Districts Historical Society, have to tell.

This is the story of a long lost railway line which will be bought back to life in a new book to be published mid 2018. Kylie and Bob have spent the last two years photographing and researching the history of the long forgotten railway – some may say “white elephant” because it only lasted about 10 years.

In 1892 the first paying passenger on the new railway from Lancefield to Kilmore was Mr Robert Beasley and the only other occupant a cow – so not an auspicious beginning to a new service!

The two historians will have many more tales to tell and photographs to show – we look forward to seeing you!

Last month Trevor Close enlightened us on his visit to the Solomon Islands with photographs of the many aircraft and landing craft wrecks that still litter the island 75 years after the major battle of Guadalcanal between the allied forces and the Japanese was fought.

The Annual General Meeting saw the committee returned as for 2016/17 – however helpers are always welcome so come and join us any Tuesday between 10 am and 3 pm.

The meeting will begin at 7:30 and end at approximately 9 – 9:30, with time for questions and general business.

Supper will be served after the meeting and all are welcome to participate.