Ellen Williams

Name: Ellen Williams

Date of Birth: 1868

Birth Location: Possibly  – Toodyay

Maiden Name: Ellen McPherson

Also Known As: 

Age at Burial: 82 years

Date of Death: 8 July 1950

Death Location: Yarloop, Western Australia

Date of Burial: 10 July 1950

Denomination: 7th Day Adventist

Row/Grave: Row 1 Grave 2

Grave Transcription: 

In loving memory of
our parents
Passed away 17th Nov. 1946
aged 74 years
Passed away 8th July 1950
aged 82 years

Father: Alexander McPherson, born 1827, Edinburgh.  Died 1894, Perth, Western Australia.

Married:  2 October 1860, Glenavon, Toodyay, Western Australia

Mother: Elizabeth Jane Jones (known as Jessie), born 1845  England.  Died 30 May 1933, Salvation Army Aged Womens Retreat, North Fremantle, Western Australia. Buried Karrakatta Cemetery –Anglican-Hc-0083.  Second husband Arthur Hewitt born 1830, died 1902 – Busselton.

Grandparents (father): John McPherson

Grandparents (mother): Daniel Jones born 1824, England.  Died 31 August 1874, York, Western Australia.

Married  – Elizabeth (maiden name unknown) born 1815, England.  Died Unknown.


Elizabeth McPherson – born 1860-1,  Fremantle, Western Australia.  Died 24 October 1939, Maylands, Perth, Western Australia.  Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, Anglican-Zo-0531.  Married Joseph Barrett in 1880 at Bunbury.

Jessie Anne McPherson – born 1864 Toodyay, Western Australia. Died 6 September 1946, Bunbury, Western Australia.  Buried Bunbury Cemetery, Anglican Section D 471.  Married Henry Gibson in 1887 at Picton.

Catherine McPherson – born 1866 Toodyay, Western Australia.  Died 8 December 1934, Leederville, Perth, Western Australia.  Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, RC Section HA Grave 0361.  Married Bernard Dixon Bruning in 1899 at Busselton.

Mary Louisa McPherson (known as Louisa) – born 1869 Toodyay, Western Australia.  Died 2 June 1947, Leederville, Perth, Western Australia.  Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, RC Section FA Grave 0165.  Married Edward Ernest Lawrence in 1906.

Isabella McPherson – born 1871 Canning, Western Australia.  Died 21 July 1943, Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia.  Buried Karrakatta Cemetery Anglican-Hc-0083 . Married William Samuel Brown in 1895 at Busselton

Caroline McPherson – born 1873 Canning, Western Australia.  Died  25 November 1940, West Perth, Western Australia. Buried Karrakatta Cemetery RC KA 0621.  Married Francis (Frank) Philp in 1900 at Fremantle.  Second Marriage John Charles McCarthy in 1924 at Fremantle.

Step Siblings: (Elizabeth Jones and Arthur Hewitt)

Arthur John Hewitt – born  1877 Busselton, Western Australia.  Died 4 April 1962, Queens Park, Perth, Western Australia.  Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, Ang, WB, 0622.  Married Annie Davidson Welsh in 1928.

Charlotte May Hewitt – (known as Florrie or Florry) born 1878 Busselton, Western Australia. Died 19 September 1960, Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia. Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, General DA 0008. Married Edward James Spry in Carnarvon 1904.

Florence Hewitt – born 1880 Busselton, Western Australia.  Died 1954, Melbourne, Victoria.  Married Frederick James Metcher in 1901.

Ethel Maud Hewitt – born 1882 Busselton, Western Australia.  Died 14 October 1959, Bicton, Western Australia. Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, Presbyterian JA 0547.  Married George Alexander Munro, in Perth 1902.

William Henry Hewitt – born 1884 Busselton, Western Australia.  Died 15 July 1957, St James Park, Perth, Western Australia.  Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, Church of Christ, EA 0117.  Married Nellie King at Carnarvon in 1912.

Spouse: Stephen Williams, born 6 October 1869, Capel, Western Australia.  Died 12 November 1946, Capel, Western Australia. Buried Capel Cemetery.


Amy Lucille Williams, born 1892 Capel, Western Australia.  Died 1960, Northhampton, Western Australia.  Married Alfred JamesPepper in 1912 at Capel.

Cyril George Williams, born 1893 Busselton, Western Australia.  Died 15 March 1957. Buried Karrakatta Cemetery, Anglican ZK 0486.  Married Edna Elizabeth Cooper in 1927 at Mundaring.

Roy Alexander Williams, born 4 February 1895 Busselton, Western Australia.  Died 2 January 1965, Capel, Western Australia. Buried Capel Cemetery.

Maude Ethel Williams, born 24 January 1901 Perth, Western Australia.  Died 13 May 1988, Bunbury, Western Australia.  Married Reginald Bleby Yates

Doris Irene Williams, born 1906 Capel, Western Australia. Died 18 March 1977, Yarloop, Western Australia.  Buried Drakesbrook Public Cemetery, Waroona, Western Australia.  Married James Howard Clarke Thomas in 1931 at Capel

Stephen Henry Williams, born 1908 Capel, Western Australia.  Died 16 January 1997, Donnybrook, Western Australia. Buried Capel Cemetery.

Winifred Williams, born 16 October 1912 Capel, Western Australia.  Died 27 August 1994 Capel, Western Australia. Buried Capel Cemetery.  Married Cyril James Turnor in 1934.

Occupation: Housewife

Military Service:

Their Story

Ellen’s Parents:

Alexander McPherson is recorded in the Western Australian Bicentennial Dictionary as been born c1827 in Scotland, the son of John, a domestic servant. Alexander arrived to Western Australia on the ship “Sea Park” on the 5th April  1854 at the Port of Fremantle.  Alexander was convict 2640 and was sentenced to 10 years.  He married Elizabeth Jane JONES (daughter of Daniel Jones) at Glenavon near  Toodyay Western Australia on the 2nd October 1860 and had a family of seven daughters with her. They appear to live in Toodyay, where Alexander employed two ticket of leave men and later appears as a labourer in Perth in 1874.   On the 5th August 1880 Alexander McPherson applies for admission in the Mt Eliza Depot. The Mt Eliza Depot was originally part of the convict establishment for use by the Enrolled Pensioner Force (lawmen) and hiring depot, but in 1869, the military vacated it (last convict ship arrived 1868) and the depot was repurposed as an “asylum for old and incapable male paupers”. Alexander died on the 19 th August 1894 and is buried at the East Pert Cemetery in an unknown burial location.

Elizabeth Jane Jones born 1845, arrived on the ship Esmeralda on the 14 October 1854 at Fremantle from London.  On board this ship was her mother Elizabeth born 1815 and two younger siblings John born 1847 and Owen born 1849.  They had come to Australia to be with Elizabeth’s father Daniel Jones who was transported on the convict ship Minden arriving on the 14th October 1851,  Daniel was convict 941, age at arrival was 26 years and his sentence for 7 years.   Daniel Jones died 31 August 1874 in York when a parsonage wall on which he was working on fell on him.  At the time of his death he had employed 10 ticket of leave men at York between the years 1858 – 1872.

Trove Newspaper Article – Daniel Jones killed in York – 4 September 1874

Elizabeth Janes Jones married Alexander McPherson on 2 October 1860 at Glenavon, Toodyay, Western Australia.  They went on to have seven daughters together including Ellen.  It would appear that this marriage disolved after the birth of their last child Caroline and  Elizabeth McPherson (nee Jones) then had a relationship with Arthur Hewitt and they had five children together with the first born child a son named Arthur  in 1877 at Busselton which was prior to Alexander’s death in 1894.   Elizabeth and Arthur Hewitt later married in the year 1900 in Perth.

The obituary for Elizabeth Hewitt in 1933, while interesting, contains some inaccuracies and omissions regarding her life. Although the basic information is correct, there are errors in the details of her marriage, the family’s arrival in Australia, and her father’s history as a convict on a ship. Notably, it fails to mention that her first husband was a convict and that she had children with her second partner Arthur before their marriage in 1900. Additionally, it overlooks the fact that her second husband, Arthur Hewitt, was also a convict who arrived on the ship Racehorse in 1865, sentenced to 15 years for burglary at the age of 30. Arthur passed away in 1902 in Busselton at the age of 72. Despite the discrepancies, an article from January 3, 1902, suggests that Elizabeth was a strong and resilient individual. The obituary notes that she never left the state of her arrival, residing in Sawyer’s Valley, Toodyay, Busselton, Carnarvon, and Perth throughout her life.

Trove Newspaper Article – “Your No Lady Anyway” – 3 January 1902

Trove Newspaper Article – Elizabeth Hewitt Obit – 2nd June 1933

Ellen McPherson

Ellen’s story begins with her marriage to Stephen Williams in May 1891 at Busselton.  The bridegroom had to sit during the service because of a recent accident and had cut his leg with an axe while felling a tree.  He can be assumed that Ellen is living in Busselton with her mother and step-siblings prior to her marriage.

Trove Newspaper Article – Williams – McPherson Wedding and Accident details – 25 May 1891

A lovely article appeared in the South Western Times on 23rd May 1941

“Golden Wedding”

Approximately 80 relatives and close friends attended the Capel Hall on Saturday last to celebrate the Fiftieth Wedding Anniversary of Mr. and Mrs Stephen Williams of Capel.

Born some 72 years ago Mr. S Williams has spent the whole of his life in Capel district and can recall practically every change of every importance that has taken place within the last 50 years.  Mrs Williams was formerly Miss Ellen McPherson her family being of early pioneering stock, who eventually settled in Busselton.  Mr and Mrs Williams in addition to their own children, have 17 grand-children and two great-grandchildren.  Most of Mr. Williams time has been spent in the timber industry and farming.

During the evening Mr. B W Prowse eulogised the sterling qualities possessed by guest of honour and wished them many more years of happiness together.  He was supported by Mr E M Dyer, Mr. F R Tucker and Mr. A Reynolds.  Mr Williams suitably responded.

A handsome wedding cake made by Mesdames D Williams and E Anderson had a prominent place at the breakfast table. Dancing was enjoyed until midnight following the breakfast.

Trove Newspaper Article – 50th Wedding Anniversary – 23 May 1941

Trove Newspaper Article – Death Notice – Ellen Williams – 10 July 1950


Information and Story Compiled by Researcher PP  (CDCP Team Member)

Links to other websites with additional information included in story.

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