John Watson and Amelia Alomes

John was born on April 12, 1814. After the death of his father, William, he was left the estate of York Grove. It was mainly through his energies that York Grove was transformed into one of the best cultivated farms in Tasmania.

He married, when 35 years old, Amelia, the daughter of Robert Alomes, who was the first man as sergeant of marines under Colonel David Collins, R.M. (afterwards Lieutenant-Governor) to plant the Union Jack at Hobart Town at the spot where Risby Bros.’ mill was formerly located.

John Watson was an enthusiastic sportsman, and gained a great reputation as a marksman, and also distinguished himself as an oarsman in some of the State’s early regattas. It is said of him that he was a good father, a faithful friend, and that his hospitality was well known throughout the district. His name was a household word for miles around. Besides cultivating York Grove, he rented several adjoining farms as well as leasing Crown Land, all of which was greatly improved under his management.

He raised a family of three sons and 12 daughters.

John Edwin born 30 June 1850, died 3 Dec 1929 Married (1) Ada Harriette Goodwin (2) Florence Lilian May Ibbott
Elizabeth Tasmaniaborn 2 Aug 1851, died Dec 1936 Married John Gibbs Tolman 2 Mar 1876
Mary Matilda born 15 Oct 1852, died Oct 1929 Married Thomas Calvert
Rosine Ann born 29 Aug 1854, died 10 Aug 1926 Married Walter Henry Higgins
William Robertborn 30 June 1856, died 18 July 1943 Married Alice Eliza Bellette
Emily Georginaborn 10 Apr 1859, died 24 Aug 1936 Married Walter Moss Honey
Ada Amelia Harrietborn 28 Dec 1857, died 9 Sep 1937 Married (1) Charles Francis Gorringe (2) George Thomas Alomes
James Theodoreborn 28 Jul 1860, died 15 Sep 1900 Married Eleanor Elliott
Amelia (Millie) born 5 Apr 1862, died 6 Jul 1944 Married Albert Genge
Hanna Laura born 30 Apr 1864, died 2 Sep 1911Married Frank McDermott
Alice Eliza born 27 Sep 1866, died 23 Oct 1883 (died 17yo)  
Eveline Sophiaborn 27 July 1868, died 7 March 1891 Married Lowther Gorringe
Amy Mariaborn 16 Jan 1870, died 8 Feb 1955Married Charles Malcolm Brown (14 November 1903)
Lily Georgianaborn 24 Dec 1871, died 20 Nov 1872 
Minnie Edithborn 25 Aug 1875, died 8 July 1940Married Leslie Derwent John Alomes

He died on November 2, 1881. His funeral was one of the largest ever known in the district, being attended by nearly all the residents of South Arm, Sandford, and Clarence, whilst Hobart, Bellerive, and Sorell sent representatives to testify to the respect in which he was held by all. His remains were interred in the Rokeby cemetery. His wife Amelia survived him for many years, dying on September 16, 1917. His brother Thomas died on March 8, 1864, at the age of 42.