Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Robert Park

Hunter Valley Medical Practitioner

Robert Park was born in Selkirk, Scotland, the son of Alexander Park and Alison Veitch. He was a brother of Alexander Park of Lewinsbrook, New South Wales.

Arrival in Australia

Robert Park arrived as surgeon superintendent on the emigrant ship Katherine Stewart Forbes in 1837.[1] He brought with him vines from Madeira, the Tinta Sereial, Malvasin and Verhelho which were planted at Lewinsbrook, Paterson. [2] He also brought with him seedless oranges trees from Rio de Janeiro....Dr. Park coming to Australia from England in an emigrant ship which called in at Rio de Janeiro, found there seedless oranges, the parent tree of which proved to be a freak found growing in 1814 in a garden at Bahia, inland from Rio. The enterprising owner had grafted buds from this freak tree on to other orange stock, and some trees thus propagated were purchased by Dr. Park, and planted by him on a grant of land at Lewinsbrook.[3]


Robert Park of Lewinsbrook married Harriette Mary, eldest daughter of Charles Boydell of Camyrallyn, Upper Paterson on 10th April 1861 at the Gresford Church.[4]


Robert Park resided in the Paterson district until his death......Dr. Park, a very old resident of Gresford died at his residence Lewinsbrook, on 14 April 1888 after a lingering illness. [5]

This lamented gentleman died at his residence, Lewinsbrook, on Saturday last, the 14th instant. He had been ailing, for some time past, and latterly became so weak that he was unable to leave his home. Seldom in this world has anyone passed away so universally loved and respected as the late worthy Doctor in this neighbourhood, where he lived and worked for half a century. He was of the salt of the earth in the various capacities in which he was so well known : as a most affectionate and kind husband and parent and guardian ; in all the phases of domestic life; as a Christian and honourable gentleman in all his transactions; as a man whose hospitality was un-bounded, and whose genial companionship was always appreciated, as a true and kind friend to all classes; as Warden of the District Council, over whose deliberations he presided for many years; as senior magistrate of the bench, where he ever dispensed even-handed justice ; as warden and lay reader of the Church of England at Gresford, within whose portals his well-known face and figure will be sadly missed ; and last, but not least, as a professional man, ever ready to give the benefit of his medical skill and advice to all who required it.

His funeral started from Lewinsbrook at 2 p.m. yesterday (Sunday, 15th inst.), followed by a goodly number, and all along the route, through part of the beautiful valleys of Lewinsbrook Creek and the Allyn and Paterson river, the cortege was augmented by groups of mourners in vehicles and on horseback, attaining increasing dimensions until its arrival at Gresford Church, where some 250 people were assembled, and this number would, doubtless, have been largely increased, had news of the doctors death been received in time in the remoter parts of the district. The impressive funeral service of the Church of England was read by the Rev. A. H. Priest, who appeared to be much affected, and the moistened eye and downcast look everywhere prevalent testified to the love and respect which followed to the grave a man of whom, in this neighbourhood it may be safely said, We shall never look upon his like again. The doctor had reached the age of 73 years, and leaves a widow and a family of four sons and four daughters to mourn their loss[6]


[1] Sydney Herald 14 December 1837

[2] Sydney Monitor 18 July 1838

[3] The Wingham Chronicle and Manning River Observer (NSW : 1898 - 1954) Fri 17 Mar 1944

[4] Sydney Morning Herald 17 April 1861.

[5] Sydney Morning Herald 20 April 1888

[6] Maitland Mercury 19 April 1888