Dyer & Hammond

William "John" Dyer  

Ellen Hammond

  Married:  11 May 1867

Born: 26 Jul 1844 New Town Penzance Cornwall. Born: 1848 Barabool Hills-Geelong
Died: 5 Sep 1937 Benambra-"Greenvale Homestead" Died: 10 Jul 1932  Benambra-"Greenvale Homestead"
Father: William John Dyer Father: William Hammond
Mother: Ann Rosewarne Mother: Elizabeth Scull
John and Ellen Dyer settled in Benambra in 1877. John's mother Ann was widowed when John was two, and she soon remarried to Thomas Tippet Boucher. He didn't treat her with as much kindness as he might have and was a perfect tyrant to her young son, being John. Why they migrated to Australia is unknown, but an old Benambra identity, Peter Salt, who knew the family well once said " Hurr, that old bastard, he was sent out here for poaching hares. This has not been established as yet.

It was in 1846 that the family sailed for Australia aboard the "Labuan", John was not liked by his step father and by the time he was 12 he had had enough and left home. With just a blanket and his dog he headed into the wide world. He found work at a squatting station called "Mallagh". In 1867, John left the station and selected 100 acres at Mt Moriac., it was the same year that he met and married Ellen Hammond. It was said that John married Ellen for her money (she owned two cows).   

John heard of good grazing land for selection in the Omeo district, and with James Matthews made their way to have a look. Mr. Matthews selected some for $2.00 per acre, whilst John selected some further down the creek for $1.00 per acre. Because he already had 100 acres, he was only allowed to purchase 220 acres at Benambra. He then returned to Mt Moriac to collect his family.

He owned two bullock teams and two wagons at the time, Mr. Matthews owned one. Ellen and her four young children travelled in one of the wagons, along with a nanny goat which they milked each day for the children. Once they arrived they pitched a tent and lived in it. It was in this same tent that little Sarah was born.

John went into the bush and split shingles to build his family a house. Once completed, he left his wife and family and went to work with his bullock team. His first job was to fence the long paddock of "Penderscourt" For this he was paid 40 per mile. John's bullocks served to Benambra and Omeo district for many years and was well known throughout the district.

At the time of Ellen's death they had been married for 66 years.


Elizabeth Dyer Born:    24 Apr 1868   Alfred George Dyer   Born:    22 Dec 1882     
William Mark Dyer Born: 3 May 1872     Albert Harold Dyer   Born:    19 Feb 1885    
John Thomas Dyer Born:    28 Mar 1874     Arthur George Dyer Born:    21 May 1887    
Rose Warne Dyer Born:     7 May 1876     Laura Mary Emma Dyer  Born:    26 May 1889   
Sarah Ann Dyer:   Born 17 Oct 1878     Steven William Dyer Born:    26 Sep 1893    
Rachel Helen Dyer Born: 13 Jun 1880