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Churchill Island Heritage Farm Newhaven, Victoria

Churchill Island Heritage Farm covers 57 hectares and boasts a historic working farm with ‘hands on’ farming demonstrations reminiscent of a bygone era. Sheep shearing, cow milking and working dog demonstrations run every day except Christmas day and are included in the entry fee. Carriage rides operate during school holidays and special events. Churchill Island is easily accessible by an all-vehicle bridge from Phillip Island.First walked by Bunurong/Boonwurrung Aboriginal people, the island has an important place in the history of European settlement in Victoria. There are also restored historic buildings from the 1860s and 1870s, lovely gardens, ancient Moonah trees, wetlands, a visitor’s centre and a licensed café.

The Island forms part of the Churchill Island Marine National park and the waters and mudflats surrounding Churchill Island are listed under the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance. Two island circuit tracks offers magnificent views across Western Port Bay and provide excellent bird viewing (Royal Spoonbills, Pied Oyster Catchers, ibis, gulls, herons and pelicans). There are also views of Tortoise Head and French Island. The whole island is heritage listed with Heritage Victoria and the buildings are classified by the National Trust.

Links

Contact Information

location
246 Samuel Amess Drive Newhaven VIC 3925 (map)
phone
+61 03 5956 7214; 03 5951 2800

Contact

Opening Hours

Daily 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Entry Fee

Adults (16yrs+) $12.25 Children (4-15yrs) $6.15 Australian Pensioner(ID required) $8.55 Family (2A +2C) $30.65

Location

246 Samuel Amess Drive Newhaven Victoria

View on Google Maps

This collection forms the basis for the operations of Churchill Island Heritage Farm, which is located on Churchill Island, where in 1801, during a survey of Western Port Bay, Lieutenant James Grant built a cottage, cleared land and planted the first wheat and corn crops grown in Victoria, using seeds provided by John Churchill. The working farm features a homestead, built by Samuel Amess, a one-time mayor of Melbourne who purchased the island in 1872, together with cottages built by John Rogers in the 1860s and associated outbuildings. As well as the heritage buildings, the collection includes agricultural machinery, implements, and tools, special collections of farm engines and dairy equipment, and historical photographs. The collection is managed by Churchill Island Heritage Farm curator.

Significance

This collection documents early Victorian rural life and agriculture, and the history of the site where crops were first grown in Victoria in 1801; includes also information on the various owners of the island and Government ownership from 1970s.

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330 items with images

330 items with images

Lace Piece

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Same lace as 0075. Tatting, fine delicate (lace Group Embroiderers Guild 1/3/12) See photos (2)

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

Crochet square

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Hand Crochet (Lace Group Embroiderers Guild 1/3/12) See photo

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

French Buttons

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Hand made French crochet buttons on original card (Lace Group Embroiderers Guild 1/3/12) See photos (2)

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

lace piece

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Machine embroidered (Lace Group Embroiderers Guild 1/3/12) See photos (2)

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

8" Spofford Brace

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Iron carpenter's brace, metal handle, rotating knob, thumb screw ..... rusted.

Winnower

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Hand operated winnower with handle and hopper unpainted

Fern hook

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Curved blade, painted black. Wooden limb handle, varnished, some white paint spots. Nail into handle in blade holder sleeve. Slight bulge in handle near blade holder

Historical information

Donated by Wilfred Dungan on behalf of the Dungan family Collection originally used on the property of the late Dr Rae Dungan in Falls Creek Rd Olinda, purchased in the late 1930s from Olinda pioneers Harry and Minnie Holden. Also on the property of late May Farndon of Farndon’s and Falls Rd Mt Dandenong – aunt of Dr Rae William Dungan and also an early pioneer. Family holidays and weekends involved use of these sorts of farm implements plus working with horses. Post-war, the Olinda hand tools and machinery moved to the Shady Creek, Nilma North area where bush, pasture and cows had replaced the Olinda property. Wilfred well remembers being on one end of the crosscut saws cutting fence posts, logs and timber under “the tireless and vocal instruction” of a red headed local Darnum Rd legend called Harry Collyer. “He drove an old Rugby car and nearly pulled me through the logs with every cut!”

lace trim

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

machine made off-white length of lace trim with zig-zag and flower motif and scalloped picot edge.

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929

Hay wagon

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Large hay wagon with steel shod wooden wheels

Milk cart

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Unpainted wooden milk vendor cart, rubber inflatable tyres ( perished)

Inscriptions & Markings

"Milk Vendor" painted on right side

Hand Auger

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Auger for working wood

Historical information

Alexander Mathieson & Sons Ltd ('& Sons', after c. 1890), of the Saracen Tool Works, Glasgow, advertised as 'manufacturers of planes, mechanical, engineering and edge-tools'. They received 'prize medals' at the London, Melbourne and Edinburgh International Exhibitions of 1851, 1862, 1880 and 1886, in their 'quest for perfection in tools'. Mathieson's vast output included specialised craft implements for coopers, ship's carpenters, tinsmiths and wheelwrights. The firm originated when master plane-maker John Manners opened premises in Saracen Lane, Glasgow, in 1792. 4 Alexander Mathieson (c. 1797–1852) took over his business in 1821, which he gave as the foundation date of his firm. He was later succeeded by his son, Thomas A. Mathieson (1822–1899), a prominent Glasgow magistrate and preceptor of Hutcheson's Hospital charitable institution. In 1854, Mathiesons moved to East Campbell Street, and had opened branches in Edinburgh, Dundee and Liverpool by 1876. The third generation comprised Thomas O. and James H. Mathieson (born 1867), the latter being a Glasgow bailie (councillor), whose estate totalled an enormous £150,939 in 1926. Mathieson's hand- and small machine-tools (e.g. bandsaws and beading machines) were exported worldwide, especially their 'heavy duty auger bits used... for boring railway sleepers'.

Inscriptions & Markings

Mathieson Glasgow (crescent moon trade mark) 2 1/4 " bore

Handwritten notes on paper

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Herd notes. Handwritten notes in pencil on paper (lined) with script running across lines, with names and ages of herd.

Historical information

Dr Harry Jenkins owned Churchill Island from 1936 to 1963 and bequeathed it to Margaret Campbell on his death. Sister Campbell had been nurse to his disabled son and wife and she lived on the island from the time of World War Two. The item was given to Arthur Evans, a family friend, on the day of the auction sale of artefacts when she sold the island, approximately 1973.

Significance

The document demonstrates Harry Jenkins interest and committment to farming on Churchill Island and provides information on farming of the era.

Journal of Churchill Island farm expenditure 1941-2

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Journal with red title print and red spine showing farm expenditure 1941-2.

Historical information

Record of farm expenditure, 1941-2 for Churchill Island farm owned by Harry Jenkins 1936-1963.

Significance

Shows historic farm activity on Churchill Island

wood splitting wedge

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

wedge with groove to prevent sticking. Worn top, burred over

Double ended spanner

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

stainless steel, some pitting. One end slightly smaller than the other

Photo of Churchill Island Cannon - "1967 New Years Eve" (on back)

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Framed colour photo of Churchill Island cannon firing on New Years Eve 1967.

Historical information

The cannon dates from the 1870s during Samuel Amess's ownership of Churchill Island. He claimed it was a gift from Captain Waddell of the Confederate raiding ship "Shenandoah", but research has proven this to be unlikely. It may have been given to Amess by Captain John Cleeland of "Woolamai House". The cannon was fired every New Years Eve during the Jenkins and Campbell eras (1936-1972).

Significance

The cannon is apparently of European origin from c. 1850s and has been in the Churchill Island garden since the 1870s or 1880s. It does not seem to have been fired regularly until the Jenkins era (1936-63) and also the Campbell era (1963-72) when it was fired each New Year's Eve to see in the new year. It has always been considered an important part of the garden, as evidenced by the many photographs in the CIHF collection dating from the 1890s which include family and friends posing at the cannon.

Inscriptions & Markings

Label on back of frame: "1967 New Years Eve"/ "from John Brown '97"

Supper Cloth

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Linen supper cloth with drawn thread 55mm from edge all around, 2 rows of drawn thread with petals 130 mm from edge and 175mm from edge. Drawn thread at corners showing petals and whorls. White. Butterflies embroidered at alternate diagonal corners. Letters "M" and "A" at the other alternate diagonal corners. White embroidery on white linen. Butterfly motif.

Historical information

Supper cloth embroidered by Margaret Amess, youngest child of Samuel and Jane Amess. Margaret Amess gave the supper cloth to Mary Clay, aunt of the donor.

Inscriptions & Markings

"M" "A" in diagonal corners.

Lace Piece

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Machine embroidery (Lace Group Embroiderers Guild 1/3/12) See photos (2) taken 30/12/11

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis. Keywords janet amess lace collection; lace; churchill island Statement of Significance

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

Tin snips

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Straight blades. Damaged end of one handle. Surface rust.

Neck piece with triangular scallops

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

See photos (3)

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

Black beaded/sequined trimming

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

2 layers - one strong background with fine top layer with beadwork - hand or machine? (Lace Group Embroiderers' Guild 1/3/12) See photos (2)

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

Inscriptions & Markings

Packaged with note: "Black beaded trimming (hand beaded)".

hand shears

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

hand shears with single spring, surface rust, unused, unsharpened

Bag lifter

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

metal, surface rust, 2 arms with semi-circle lift at one end

Extended Mathieson Auger

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Damaged wooden handle (not original) bit welded on to metal rod, handle welded on to rod,. Surface rust

Inscriptions & Markings

Mathieson + (illegible)

Seal fur muff

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

See photo

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

Lace Piece

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Machine made lace (Lace Group Embroiderers Guild 1/3/12) See photos (2)

Historical information

The names of the Amess women who owned the lace are: Jane Amess (nee Straughan) – donor Unity’s great grandmother (pet name Janet, but not used as it will confuse with Unity’s mother). Jane was the wife of Samuel Amess, first Samuel Amess to own Churchill Island. Frances Amess (nee Turnbull) – grandmother, married Robert Lisle Straughan Amess, 4th child of Samuel and Jane Janet Jickell (nee Amess) – mother, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis, married James Jickell Unity Mary Bright (nee Jickell) was the donor, 2nd of two children of Robert and Francis.

Significance

The Amess family owned Churchill Island from 1872 to 1929. This lace collection was owned and contributed to by four generations of Amess women, see above.

Adze

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

Fairly modern standard adze

Historical information

Hytest is regarded as best Australian brand of axe.

Inscriptions & Markings

Hytest

Scythe

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

scythe with surface rust, no handle, good steel, rough welds on socket, hole for mounting handle (e.g. with screw)

Inscriptions & Markings

TROJAN/264

fishing reel handle

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

brass handle with turned wooden handles either end, brass flat and slightly tapered each end, hole in centre for attaching to reel.

Historical information

E H "Ted" Jenkins was the paraplegic son of Harry Jenkins who bought Churchill Island in 1936 as an interest for Ted. Ted lived on Churchill Island at various times with his nurse Sr Margaret "Jimmy" Campbell, e.g. second world war when they ran a shorthorn dairy farm, and at other times lived in their home in Melbourne. Ted was keen on 'ham' radio, and had many friends from his school who became life-long friends and frequent visitors to him on Churchill Island.

Significance

E H "Ted" Jenkins was the paraplegic son of Harry Jenkins who bought Churchill Island in 1936 as an interest for Ted. Ted lived on Churchill Island at various times with his nurse Sr Margaret "Jimmy" Campbell, e.g. second world war when they ran a shorthorn dairy farm, and at other times lived in their home in Melbourne. Ted was keen on 'ham' radio, and had many friends from his school who became life-long friends and frequent visitors to him on Churchill Island.

wedge

Churchill Island Heritage Farm, Newhaven

One of three wedges cut from one piece of steel. Blacksmith made.

Historical information

Used in conjunction with other wood splitting/cutting tools donated by Wilfred Dungan