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Finlay, Alexander Kirkman (1844–1883)

General regret will be felt at the sad intelligence which has been received by cable from Europe of the untimely death of Mr. Alexander Kirkman Finlay, of Glenormiston, whilst sojourning in the old country for the benefit of his health. Mr. Finlay was the second son of Mr. Alexander Struthers Finlay, of Castle Toward, Argylleshire. He was educated at Harrow and Cambridge, and came to Victoria on finishing his education. His father was a partner in the firm owning the Mount Noorat, Glenormiston, and the Sisters, three splendid freehold estates in the Western District, which were taken up originally as squatting stations by the late Mr. Niel Black, and gradually converted into freeholds, Mr. Black being one of the partners. The properties were subdivided a few years ago, when Glenormiston, the old home station, fell to the lot of Mr. A. K. Finlay, who entered into the business of stock-breeding. He established a stud herd of shorthorn cattle and a fine flock of Lincoln sheep, but he was more popularly known by the public as an owner and breeder of thoroughbred racehorses. He was one of the leading racing men of Australia, and for some years was a prominent member of the Victoria Racing Club committee. Being thoroughly conversant with racing law, his judgment was often called into requisition in difficult cases, and his decisions were seldom or never questioned. He was in the front rank as a breeder of thoroughbred stock, and on his Glenormiston estate were bred such animals as Wellington, Suwarrow, The Duke, Belladrum, Welcome Jack, Little Jack, Colstoun, and other winners of repute. His importations included Bethnal Green, King Cole, and a full sister to the celebrated American horse, Foxhall, whom he purchased from Mr. R. W. Cameron, for 700 guineas. As a racing man, he, was fairly successful, Tocal, Tourmaline, Jack in the Green, and Colstoun having won in his colours on the Flemington racecourse. Declining health prevented Mr. Finlay from taking an active part in the sports of the field, but previous to the commencement of his illness he was an athlete of no mean powers. He will be ever borne in affectionate remembrance in the pleasant town of Camperdown, where at his own expense he planted a fine double row of English elms along the main street for upwards of a mile in length. On the 7th of August, 1878, Mr. Finlay was married at St. James's Church, Sydney, to Nora Augusta Maud, daughter of Sir Hercules Robinson, then Governor of New South Wales.

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'Finlay, Alexander Kirkman (1844–1883)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/finlay-alexander-kirkman-14282/text25344, accessed 18 October 2019.

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