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Robertson, James (1848–1890)

from Queenslander

Mr. James Robertson, whose untimely death was recorded in a recent telegram, was the youngest son of Mr. William Robertson, of Colac. He was born at Hobart on the 7th July, 1848, and went to England with his parents in 1859 returning to the colony three years later. Subsequently he went back to England and was placed at Rugby, where he remained for several years. When his education was completed he came out to Victoria, and at once assumed the active management of the estate at Colac, which included upwards of 29,000 acres of freehold. It was without exception the finest estate in one block in Victoria. After the death of Mr. William Robertson his four sons entered into partnership, which continued for a number of years, the business being under Mr. James Robertson's management. He was acknowledged to be the best judge of Shorthorns in Victoria as well as being a thoroughly practical farmer, and it is not therefore surprising that the firm were most successful breeders of this type of cattle. Their herd was originally formed by importations by Mr. William Robertson nearly fifty years ago. In 1876 the Robertson Bros, purchased the whole of Mr. Richard Morton's Mount Derrimut herd, consisting of thirty-seven head, for £26,000. About this period they inaugurated the annual sales of their surplus stock. These animals realised most extraordinary prices. The average on one occasion was for heifers £1100 10s., and for bulls over £800, the day's sale realising over £30,000. A few years after this the firm dissolved partnership, and a large area of this land was sold by auction. Mr. James Robertson's portion averaged £21 per acre, and a large quantity was leased for agricultural and grazing purposes, the former averaging £2 3s. per acre and the latter 20s. The late Mr. James Robertson never entered politics, nor even the local shire council, although he was so generally esteemed that he would have had no difficulty in obtaining a seat in Parliament. He was one of' the most popular men in Victoria, and he did more than probably anyone else for the Colac district. He leaves a wife and six children to mourn their loss.

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Citation details

'Robertson, James (1848–1890)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/robertson-james-15955/text27187, accessed 19 June 2018.

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