Historical information

The Gordons were architects and were associated with many buildings still standing in Albury and Wodonga, St Patrick's Church and the de Kerilleau Homestead among them. They established Vermont Orchard on 74 acres to the south of the Wodonga settlement. Here they grew fruit and nuts for the domestic and export market. The enterprising family also set about transforming some of the land by clearing it, creating streets and making general improvements. It was the biggest subdivision in Wodonga at the time. The 234 allotments in the Wodonga Estate were put up for sale by auction in May 1890. A total of 200 people were said to have attended. Gordon, William, Charles and Vermont streets in Wodonga are named after the family.
This bell was used at the Vermont orchard to signal the beginning and end of the working day, as well as lunch breaks.

Physical description

The Gordon Family orchard bell is made of cast iron. It includes the inscription "J. C. W../G./1858." This is thought to represent the initials of John Gordon and sons Walter Joseph and Charles Goodwin Sylvester Gordon. There is some conjecture about this due to the date "1858". John was born in London, England in 1823 and died in 1880. Walter is generally accepted to have been born in 1857 and died 1903. In one family tree Charles is recorded as being born on 28 January 1858 but his birth was registered in 1860. The mystery of the date is therefore not fully resolved.

Inscriptions & markings

On one side of the bell "J. C. W../G./1858."