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Paterson River history

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The Allyn River property "Torryburn" began as a grant to John McIntyre who arrived in New South Wales in 1825. At first he named the grant "Kinghome" then changed it to Torryburn. In September 1830 John was murdered by four of his convict workers. His brother Peter inherited the grant and was allowed to buy an adjoining 2,000 acres of Crown Land for £500.

The 4,000 acre Torryburn estate fronted the Allyn River on the west and adjoined Lewinsbrook on the north and Campsie on the south.

location of Torryburn on the Fingal Parish map

Torryburn is north of Vacy. The Allyn River forms its western boundary (Fingal Parish map, with digital additions).

Peter McIntyre died in 1841 and Torryburn passed to his sister Mary who sold it to John Alford. In 1872 Robert Logan bought Torryburn. He died in 1896 and in 1898 Charles Mackellar purchased it from Logan's estate.

Mackellar's daughter Dorothea, 13 years old at the time, became well known in the 1900s for her poem "My Country" which begins "I love a sunburnt country ...". It was partly inspired by her teenage years at Torryburn and at another family property near Gunnedah. Mackellar ownership of Torryburn lasted only three years – in 1901 Robert Madrell purchased it.

1881 Pender plans for Torryburn homestead

In 1881 Maitland architect JW Pender drew up plans for a new residence at Torryburn for owner Robert Logan. It incorporated elements of earlier buildings.

In 1908 Robert Madrell broke up Torryburn by subdividing and selling it in 12 lots (see sale poster below). Only three lots sold initially but by September 1911 all had been sold except lots 1 and 2 which were then re-offered for sale.[1]

Torryburn subdivision poster 1908

Poster for the subdivision of Torryburn in 1908. Lot 7 is the homestead block of 1,085 acres.

From 1938 to 1968 Frank Eveleigh owned "Torryburn" (presumably only lot 7, the 1,085 acres on which the homestead stands – clarification needed). It was then in Staunton family ownership from 1975 to 1989.


1. Maitland Daily Mercury: 27 January 1908 page 2 and 27 September 1911 page 8.


Val Anderson, Cynthia Hunter and Virginia Daniels. The Dorothea Mackellar My Country Paterson Valley Connection. Paterson Historical Society, 2nd edit. 2016.