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Elizabeth Macarthur-Onslow (1840–1911)

The death of Mrs. Macarthur Onslow in London, as announced in this paper last week, is being felt very keenly by her many friends in and around Camden, Her invariable kindness and generous assistance were ever ready for all in need. Her many benefits to the Town, as for instance the gift of the new Park, her contributions to the School of Arts and the annual Agricultural Show were but indications of her disposition to help on all good works. The children of the various Public Schools often reaped the benefit of the interest she took in their welfare and education. Mrs. Onslow was the last direct descendant of John Macarthur, to whom Australia owes so much in the matter of the wool industry. An account, soon to be published, we hope, of Macarthur's Life and Work occupied much time and thought in the last few years of his granddaughter's life. The only daughter of Mr. James Macarthur, who married Miss Stone, spent all her life at Camden Park except when for family reasons she visited the old country. For years, Mrs. Onslow was at the head of Camden Park Estate, before it was formed into a company as it is now, and to the cares of her household and responsibilities of property elsewhere, she added care and concern for very many people who, in ordinary circumstances, would have absolutely no claim upon her. She loved to drive round visiting the cottages, and see that her employees and their families had everything they could reasonably expect, and she was always devising ways of giving them better homes and brighter lives. Miss Macarthur married, in 1867, Captain Arthur Onslow, R.N., who, at one time, was the M.P. for the district, and later on took his seat in the Legislative Council. He died in 1882. Perhaps the most prominent memorial of Mrs. Onslow is the clock and peal of bells in S. John's Church, presented in 1897.

Mrs. Onslow leaves six children living, and ten grandchildren. The Colonel is a well-known figure in politics and in military circles. Miss Onslow, who has had the care of her mother for so long, is also very well known both in Sydney and in this district owing to her many activities and interests. Captain George Onslow has been Mayor of Camden more than once, and is now in the shire and municipal councils. Captain William Onslow is just about to take up a high and important military command in New Zealand. Mssrs. John and Arthur Onslow are devoting themselves to pastoral pursuits.

There will still be remembered the self-denying and patriotic efforts of Mrs. Onslow at the time of the South African War; how she worked for the comfort of our troops who had gone there. Four of her sons were at the Front. When the Dreadnought Fund was started, Mrs. Onslow subscribed largely to it, and her money, instead of being returned to her, was with that of many others distributed among the local Schools of Arts and Hospitals. Mrs. Onslow was taken ill last January and, in what was apparently the third stroke of paralysis, died at 8 p.m. last Wednesday, August 2nd, an the 73rd year of her age. She was buried on Saturday at Send, in the county of Surrey, alongside the beautiful old home of the sisters of her late husband.

Original publication

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Macarthur-Onslow, Elizabeth (1840–1911)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 26 July 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]


8 May, 1840
Camden, New South Wales, Australia


2 August, 1911 (aged 71)
London, Middlesex, England

Cause of Death