Hunter Valley Colonial Medical Practitioners

 

Robert Halliley Milner

Pages River - Namoi River

 

Robert Halliley Milner was born in 1816. He arrived as Surgeon on the Duke of Roxburgh in January 1842.

Twelve months later he was residing in the Page's River district. The surrounding countryside was at this time infested with cattle stealers and a desperate gang of bushrangers. Some of these desperadoes were captured in January 1843. Dr. Milner later attended a meeting with other principal settlers of the district to thank magistrate John Robertson and Chief constable Shields for their bravery and persistence in apprehending the gang.

While still residing in the Pages River district in 1843, Robert Milner pledged his support for Donald McIntyre of Kayuga as representative in the Legislative Council; and was involved in the Pages River Race entering his horse 'Snowball' in the races in 1844.

He married Caroline Harley in Muswellbrook in September 1845 and together they moved to the far reaches of the settled districts.

The Sydney Herald carried the claims to lease of Crown Lands beyond the settled district in 1848 - Liverpool Plains district - Robert Halliley Milner - Name of Run Turrawan. Estimated area, seventeen thousand three hundred and twenty acres. Estimated grazing capabilities, six hundred cattle or three thousand sheep. bounded on the north by the river Namoi for seven miles; on the south by Bricklow Scrub; on the east by a line from a marked tree at the Gully Kiery, bearing south four miles, dividing it from the run of Baamba, occupied by Lady Mary Jamison; on the west by a line from a marked tree at a waterhole, Burroo, bearing south four miles, dividing the run from Tibberina, occupied by Mr. W.C. Wentworth.

In 1850 Henry Hunt was grateful for Dr. Milner's care when the head of a spear which had been lodged in Hunt's shoulder blade for eight years was extracted by the doctor.

The Empire reported the death of Robert Milner in January 1858 - An awfully sudden death occurred at Broadwater on Sunday the 10th instant. Dr. Milner, who had been walking in the garden on returning into the house complained to Mrs. Milner that it was very hot, and laid down on the sofa. Some very short time afterwards she observed him quite dead, with his head reclining on his arm.

Later that year the kitchen at the house was burned to the ground. Had it not been for the prompt assistance rendered by Mr. Glass, Mr. Ledingham and other neighbours, the homestead would have been enveloped in the flames as well.

Their eldest daughter Annie died in 1866 and daughter Caroline drowned in the Namoi River in 1869. Two sons Alfred and Arthur continued to live in the district.

A visitor described the district in 1874 - The distance from Boggabri to Narrabri is 34 miles. Four miles from the former place the traveller reaches a romantic spot called the rock. This is a perpendicular wall, several hundred feet high, on the road side. The aboriginal name of this remarkable place is Cooboobindi. At the foot of the precipice there is a good hotel and store kept by Mr. Richard Everingham. On the opposite side of the road there is a comfortable private house, in which dwells Mr. David Grover, one of the oldest inhabitants of that part of the country. Fifteen miles beyond we arrived at the Turrawan Hotel, the property of Mr. Thomas Eather, where we remained all night. The river Namoi flows past the Turrawan inn. A short distance beyond Turrawan we came to Mrs. Milner's farm of 500 acres; and opposite a good looking house, Mr. Perry's I believe....

Caroline Milner had resided in the district for over forty years and was a respected member of the community when she passed away in 1896. She was 71 years old and the Sydney Morning Herald reported that she had died of blood poisoning.


 

Gentlemen listed at Guy's Hospital, 1838

  

 

 

 



 

 

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