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Published: January 8th 2006
Mt Bryan East school
This is the school that Dan's Great Grandfather Thomas attended. He had to walk 1 mile to get to school from the original homestead but that became 5 miles when they moved to Almondvale. Best to view this as a Full Image and then use Next to scroll through the other images.
During our visit to Mt Bryan we were treated to a historical tour of the area by Jim Quinn (Dan's Grandfather). This entry shares what we found out.
The Quinn family migrated to Australia from Ireland in 1853 and have resided in South Australia ever since. The family homes have been around Mt Bryan, progressively moving in a clockwise direction around the mountain.
Dan’s Great Grandfather on the Quinn side of the family spent the first 8 years of his life in a little house 8 miles north from Mount Bryan (section 662). His name was Thomas James Quinn (born 20/9/1892 at Mount Bryan East, died 9/4/1975 Burra). He lived with his parents William Henry Quinn (born 2/11/1861 at Princess Royal Station, south of Burra, and died 6/10/1948 Burra) and Anne O’Mealley (born 8/7/1865 Kapunda, died 8/3/1957 Adelaide) and attended the Mount Bryan East school. He was the oldest of 7 children. When the Quinn family moved to "Almondvale" at Mt Bryan East, Thomas' walk to Mt Bryan East school went from being 1 mile to 5 miles.
Thomas fought in the First World War in the 32nd battalion and won a Military Medal. When he returned from
The ruins of the original homestead
Peter is standing next to the hearth of the house where Great-Grandfather Thomas was born. There is a flock of sheep in the next paddock. This property is located to the north of the mountain.
the war he was given the farm at Almondvale as a gift from his parents. At the age of 30, Thomas married the then 26-year-old Harriett Smith from Quorn, and their fourth child was James Vincent Quinn, otherwise known as “Poppa”. In 1923 they moved into a house just out side of the township of Mt Bryan, so Poppa only had to walk down the hill to go to the Mt Bryan school.
When Poppa was 20 years old he married Nanna (Rosemary Gladys Samuels; age 18). Their wedding was on August 22, 1953. Peter (a.k.a. Dad) was the seventh of their eleven children. The bus picked him up to take him the 8 km to his school at the Mount Bryan township. Dad (aged 25) and Mum (aged 28) married on the 22nd July 1991. Their first and only child was Dan, who gets driven the 7km to his school (although every now and then he rides his bike with Mum).
The Mount Bryan East school is now a part of the Heysen trail and it is possible to organise overnight camping in the school house through the ‘Friends of the Heysen trail’ in Adelaide.
Box thorns, plough and shed
There were numerous pieces of old farm equipment at the original homestead site. In the distance you can see the ruins of the shed buildings.
Boy it was a long way to school for my great grandfather - 5 miles. Only the girls had horses and the boys had to walk. I found a lucky horse shoe at the old place and rusty ploughs and harvesters that I could climb up. There were also spiky bushes there which were pretty tough. There were ruins of a small hut and a shed where my great-grandfather lived. Poppa had tonnes of information about the Quinn history and how his father lived. When I was talking about tonnes I was talking about a trailer with 24 tonnes of wheat in it and 20 tonnes of the vehicle - making a total of 44 tonnes (is that a lot or what?).
Joke time ….
Q. What did the piece of bread say when it bumped into the toaster?
A. I’m toast
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