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First Missions - Australia
Revised December 5, 2022

See Account: John Hardie - Concerning his Arrival in Australia and New Zealand

Information welcome!

When did the workers first arrive? 1904

Who were the first brother workers?  John Hardie and Sandy Alexander arrived on July 24, 1904, in Melbourne on the SS Medic. After two difficult months, they gave up. Sandy forsook John and John went to the hastings open home in New Zealand.

Who were the first sister workers? In 1905, Fanny Carroll and Annie Smith arrived in Melbourne on October 11 by SS Geelong. They waited two weeks for their ship to arrive and went to New Zealand.

In 1907,
the SS Orontes, sailed on the 27th December from London and arrived in Melbourne in February 1908, with four Brother Workers on board: Bob Bashford, Sam Jones, Sandy Hinds and Sam McMullen. In Oct. 13, 1908 Wilson and Annie McClung, Hannah Alexander and Queenie Higgins sailed from Dublin to New Zealand.  McClungs went to preach in Victoria and Tasmania.

Who was the first to profess, what year and where?  Ada Chedzy (née Cousins) at Deer Park in late 1904 through John Hardie and Sandy Alexander.

Who were the first native workers to go in the work and When?
First Native Brother Worker:
First Native Sister Worker:
Ada Cousins at Northcote Conv in 1908.

When & Where was the first Gospel Meeting?  On arrival in Melbourne 24th July 1904, John and Sandy had a tent mission in Oakleigh. One night a storm damaged their tent.

When & Where was the first Sunday fellowship meeting?
When & Where was the first baptism?

When & Where was the first convention? 
1908 First Convention at Northcote

Where have subsequent conventions been held?
1909 & 1910 at Malvern.
1911 & 1912 at Warrandyte.
1913, 1914, 1915 at Clayton, (Millards)
1916 until 1974 at Dandenong, except 1942 when Army in occupation.
1918 until 1942 at Stoneyford.
1928 until 1950 at Mildura.
1950 until 1965 at Larpent
1966 at Yeo, (Colac)
1965 at Speed. Nov.19th
1973 at Thoona.
1974 at Drouin.

Where are the conventions now held? Speed, Thoona, Drouin 1 & 2, Colac

Who have the Overseers been? Adam Hutchison 1907-1909; Wilson McClung 1909-1913; Bill Carroll 1913-1953; Willie Donaldson 1957-1985;

Native Language?  English

JOHN Hardie was born in Scotland in 1870 and went in the work in 1900. On the 24th July 1904, John and Sandy Alexander arrived in Melbourne from the U.K. per ship "Medic". Not long before sailing for Australia, John was in a mission in Ireland.  John and his companion assisted by the friends, built a portable hall and erected it for the mission.  They announced the opening meeting, but when the time came, John and his companion were not able to get near for the crowd. Finally, when they were able to get near, they saw that their hall was on fire and burning down. No scapegoat could be found, so according the law, the County paid the damages. That money so received, said John, paid the fare for some of the first workers who went to Australia.

TTT Editor's Note: In the absence of a written account, the above information has been compiled by the TTT Editor from various sources. Corrections or additions are most welcome; as well as other historical accounts for this country Email TTT

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