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The Descendants of
John William
Philadelphia Gray

John William Gray, eldest son of Alfred and Harriet Gray of Orroroo S.A. was born at Burra on 21st December 1880. He was educated at Orroroo Primary School and Wat College, Adelaide after which he was employed for a while with the South Australian Railways at Eurelia and Orroroo.

In 1904 he left Orroroo with a number of friends and took up land at Narrogin W.A.. He was burn out by bushfires and returned to Orroroo 1906. He worked his father's farm, at Erskine (just east of Orroroo) previously owned by William Patterson of Anlaby, S.A. (near Eudunda).John represented Erskine Ward in Orroroo and district council.

In 1907 he married Philadelphia Patterson (affectionately known as "TOT") at her parents home at Anlaby. Philadelphia was the 3rd child of William and Philadelphia Patterson. She was born at erskine S.A. 9th October 1886, attended Erskine school and sunday school and lived on her parents farm at Erskine until 1906 when they moved to Anlaby and then at Anlaby until her marriage.

After Philadelphia and John were married they returned to live at the Erskine farm. In 1919 John, Philadelphia and their youngest sons moved to the Gawler area. They were unfortunately burnt out of house and home and lived amid relatives for a while.

In 1921 they moved to the Riverland of S.A. buying a fruit property at Renmark West, and leasing a lucerne block for dairying at Cobdogla. They remained in the Riverland until 1927 when John and their eldest sons moved to a block at "Bennets Hut" Morkalla -just across the Victorian border where they cleared the land for farming, and built a home.

In 1930 Philadelphia and the younger children, who had remained in Renmark, joined the rst of the family at "KINGRAY" Morkalla. The family then consisted of ten sons and one daughter another son was born 1932. At Morkalla the family farmed successfully amid droughts and fair seasons.

During World War 2 six sons saw active service Jim(Military Medal Tobruk), Roy, Bert, Ted, Fred and Doug. (Post war they were allotted soldiers settlement blocks in Western Victoria and the others stayed in the Millewa).

Leaving some of their sons in charge on the farm John and Philadephia retired in 1949, and with their only daughter and youngest son they lived a short time in Bendigo Vic.. They and their son and daughter returned to Mildura, where on the 9th Augsut 1957, aged 76 years 8 months, John passed away.

Phliadelphia continued to reside in Mildura, spending summer months with her sons and families in Western Victoria. Philadelphia passed away 16th March 1967, aged 80 years 5 months, at St John Hospital Ballarat Victoria, John William and Philadelphia are buried together in the Mildura Cemetary.

This information was researched by Mavis Pulsi and May Gray for the family reunion 13 March 1994

Photo's of the Gray family, photo's are untitled
Just click on the image

Taken at Morkalla

Taking the truck to town

The Gray Family Band

A Day at the Cricket

Swimming at the Dam

Collecting Scrap Iron

The shop at Morkalla

Enjoying the Sunshine

The Family Fleet

Shop at Meringur

The Gray's

Swimming at the Dam

Is this reverse gear?

Building the House 1938

Grays house 1927

The Gray's

Shelter at the Morkalla oval

Learning to drive

Ready for Mass

Swimming at Lake Culluleraine

The 11 Gray Boys

A good Harvest

Bagging Wheat

Wheat is Ready

The family horse


Carting logs

Bennets Hut

Grays Homestead

The House at Morkalla




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