Burial register ID: 7598
Surname: IRELAND
First name: ISABELLA
Middle names:
Gender: Female
Age: 84 Years
Cause of death: Unknown
Burial type:
Date of death: 02-Sep-1896
Date of burial: 04-Sep-1896

Block: 37
Plot: 5

Sacred to the memory of


Native of St Andrews Scotland,

Died January 13th 1880

Aged 65 years.

Erected by his widow


Wife of the above

Died 1st September 1896

Aged 84 years.

I have loved you on Earth — I will meet you in Heaven

There is also a plaque, which reads:

Peter & Isabella Ireland

Left Fife, Scotland to sail from

Liverpool, 11 January 1855

On the “Ocean Chief” for Tasmania

Eventually to settle and farm

On Mount Cargill

Dedicated on the 150th anniversary

At the family reunion

Bio contributor: Pauline Ireland-Kenny

Isabella Ireland 1812–1896

Isabella was the wife of Peter Ireland, and emigrated with him and their five children on the Ocean Chief for Hobart, Tasmania in 1855. Another child, James Tobin Ireland, was born during the voyage, and the youngest, David, was born at Bridgewater, Tasmania in 1860. Isabella is believed to have remained in Tasmania until 1862 to bring up the children when Peter set off for the Otago goldfields.

On 4 September 1896 an “In Memoriam” was published in the Otago Witness which gives a marvellous insight into Isabella as a person, a tribute from her remaining children. This obituary contains several inaccuracies and one important omission: the time spent from 1861-1869 in North Dunedin at Melville Street may not have been a happy memory, since Isabella’s daughter, Annie, was forced to leave home so that she could marry Michael Heads, and another daughter, Jessie, made a hard life for herself, married to Alexander McLaren Brown. Some dates have been corrected in the following:

“Mrs Ireland, whose death was recorded yesterday at the ripe age of 84, was an old colonist, having arrived in Tasmania from St Andrews, Scotland in 1855. With her husband and family, Mrs Ireland went on to the run of the late Mr Thomas Johnston, but on discovery of gold in Otago in 1860, Mr Ireland came over here and a year later sent for his wife and children. After visiting the goldfields, he took up a farm at Mount Cargill where he resided until his death seventeen years ago. The deceased lady lived on the property till the hour of her death. She had thus lived 27 years at Mount Cargill and of course knew it in its primeval state, when a trip to town was not unattended with danger to life and limb. She was a very active woman, was very philanthropic and would walk miles to assist a suffering neighbour. In the days when swaggers were numerous on the Port Road, and when there were considerable distances between homesteads, no caller at Mrs Ireland’s house was turned away comfortless. She took a leading part in establishing the Knox Church Mission Station at Mt Cargill; and having been a “townie” of the late Dr Stuart, it goes without saying that her admiration of him knew no bounds. She used to tell with great glee the story of the Doctor having paid a parochial visit unknown to her. The first she knew of the Doctor’s arrival in the district was hearing a knock at her door and the worthy pastor calling out: “Are you coming up today?” The reply was” Is that yersel, Doctor? I havna been vera weel. But if I’d kent it was you, I wad hae been there a’ the same.” And the Doctor answered: “I’ll gie ye five minutes, so come with me.” The folk who had assembled in the schoolhouse were kept waiting while the old lady made her toilette, and in due season she appeared among them. She was wont to declare that though she had heard the Doctor preach scores and scores of times, she never heard him preach better than he did that day. Mrs Ireland leaves four sons and one daughter and a large number of grandchildren.”

In fact, Peter and Isabella were to have 62 grandchildren: Irelands, Browns, Rees and Heads descendants. Isabella died on 1 September 1896, the cause of death being recorded as “senile decay and heart failure”. As stipulated in Peter Ireland senior’s will, half of the land was apportioned to Peter Ireland the younger, and the other half was equally divided between James Ireland and David Ireland. These three sons had worked on the farm, and Peter Ireland senior was clearly trying to keep the farm in the family. But in 1897, having decided to set up their own farms elsewhere, Peter and David sold their shares of the Mount Cargill property to their brother James, who was forced to mortgage the property. Two years later, the farm was not making its way. The Long Depression of the 1890s had taken its toll. In 1899, James Tobin Ireland sold the property to the neighbouring farmer on the lower side, Adam Morton.

Isabella’s children were: Peter (1839, Kilconqhar); Thomas (1841, Cellardyke); Jean (Jane) (1844, Carnbee); Janet (Jessie) (1847, St Andrews); Peter (1849, St Andrews); Isabella (Annie) (1851, St Andrews); James Tobin (1855, at sea, registered in Hobart); and David (1860, Bridgewater, Tasmania).

Others buried here: Isabella’s husband Peter.

See also:

1. Isabella’s son Thomas and his family (at Block 104 Plot 14).

2. Isabella’s daughter Janet (Jessie) Brown and her daughter Isabella (at Block 190A Plot 6-7).

3. Isabella’s daughter Isabella (Annie) Heads and her family (at Block 27 Plot 9).

There are 2 Interments in this grave:

Surname First names Age Date of death Date of burial
IRELAND ISABELLA 84 Years 02-Sep-1896 04-Sep-1896
IRELAND PETER 63 Years 13-Jan-1880 15-Jan-1880