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Arthur Jeffreys (?–1956)

The recent passing of Mr. Arthur Henry Jeffreys, of Delegate Station, Bombala, N.S.W., leaves a wide circle of friends to acclaim his goodness and mourn his loss. Known affectionately by all as the "Old Boss," the late Mr. Jeffreys set the highest standards in citizenship, while as a pastoral producer he was nothing if not progressive, his attitude being that anything could be done until proved otherwise. This was especially the case when the problems of kangaroo grass had to be faced and solved.

He often spoke of this indigenous grass which abounded in the Delegate district and on which cattle would starve during the winter months. He watched with interest the pasture improvement work that the late Charles E. Prell was doing on Gundowringa Station, Crookwell, and in 1926 commenced a similar programme on Delegate Station, which property had originally been selected by his great-grandfather, Robert (Merchant) Campbell, whose daughter married Lt. Jeffreys, of the Royal Navy. It was entrusted to the management of Arthur Henry Jeffreys by his family upon finishing his education at Radley, and then Oxford University in England, and a period of jackerooing in Queensland.

As time went on he maintained that the introduction of sub. clover was a prerequisite of soil improvement and greater production, and his close collaboration with Charlie Prell had a lot to do with the improved pastures which gradually replaced the native stock feed on Delegate Station. The figures of carrying capacity and over-all production during the past 30 years have more than justified his confidence in subterranean clover and superphosphate, and in other legumes and grasses as well. The late Mr. Jeffereys sowed down also Italian and Wimmera ryegrasses, phalaris tuberosa, etc., and although the property today is considerably reduced in size, due to the release of areas for soldier settlement after both world wars, it still carries more than twice the previous number of stock, notwithstanding the large areas devoted to cereal crops for grain and hay conservation.

For many years now Delegate Station has been pointed out as an example of how country will respond to good treatment. Its wool clip and Aberdeen Angus herd are outstanding, while on two consecutive occasions the property won the N.S.W. Department of Agriculture and Rural Bank's State Championship in the Beef Cattle Breeders' Competition.

In public life the late Mr. Jeffreys was a prominent figure, serving his district in many capacities. He was a Shire Councillor from 1907 to 1928, and president for many years of the Bibbenluke Shire. He was also associated with a great number of social, sporting, and other bodies, many of which convened a public ceremony a few years ago to mark their recognition and appreciation of his labours for the community, in the form of an illuminated address.

The friendship between Mr. Jeffreys and Charles E. Prell was further strengthened a number of years ago when Mr. Jeffreys' daughter, Florence, married Harold Prell, son of the late C. E. Prell.

Original publication

Citation details

'Jeffreys, Arthur (?–1956)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 14 June 2024.

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