b. 1808, d. 5 October 1852
FatherArchibald Campbell1 b. 1772
MotherAnn Campbell1 b. 1771

Birth, Death, Marriage

John Campbell was born in 1808.2,3 
He married Catherine MacCallum, daughter of Donald MacCallum and Janet Turner, on 21 January 1832 in Glenorchy, Argyll, Scotland.4,5,6 
He died on 5 October 1852 in sea.3 


Catherine MacCallum b. 1811, d. 3 Jan 1885
ChartsCampbell, John, descendant chart
McDonald, Irene, pedigree chart


John Campbell was a crofter in Glenorchy, Argyllshire in Scotland when the highlands were hit hard by the potato blight. A few years later, in 1851, the gold rush in Victoria created a huge shortage of agricultural labourers. With poor prospects for himself and his family at home, John took up the UK government's offer of heavily subsidised emigration to booming Victoria. In 1852 he set sail with his wife Catherine and ten of their twelve children for Port Phillip. But he never made it. He was one of 100 who perished during the voyage. Two of his children also succumbed to the rampant diseases on board.
Marriage and Family in Scotland
John Campbell and Catherine MacCallum married in Glenorchy parish, Argyll in 1832. They were married by a Justice of the Peace, and remarried by a Minister.4,5,6
The first of the Campbell children was born in 1832 in Upper Kinchrackine, Glenorchy in Scotland, and at least ten more children were born there.

The map below shows where the family lived near the River Orchy in Scotland. For a current map of the area, see this Glenorchy map.
Map showing Stronmilchan from 'Oban & Loch Awe', Ordnance Survey of Scotland 1925. Map width is 8 km.
Image: Ordnance Survey Office, Southhampton
There is a little confusion over some of the children or their names, mostly due to some idiosyncrasies with Scottish naming conventions.
A 9 year old Alexander Campbell is shown on the 1841 census with his family. But he does not appear in the list of children on his mother's death registration. Instead, listed amongst Catherine's children, there is a John who doesn't appear in any other records. Perhaps the informant, Catherine's grandson, who may never have met his uncle Alexander, was confused with all the names in the large family.7,8
Shipping records show a Janet Campbell arriving in Victoria in 1852. But on her mother's death registration, her name is given as Jessie. This was apparently common with Scottish names.9,8,10
The International Genealogical Index (IGI), and UK 1841 census, have Lillias Campbell. In the Victorian immigration indexes, she is known as Lilias (single 'l'). On the Ticonderoga website and in the book Fever Beach about the voyage to Victoria, she is known as Lilian. In the UK 1851 census, she is Lilly. On her mother's death registration, she is Lily.11,12,13,14,8,15,16
Middle names were not very common in Scotland at the time. Lucy is the only child in her family with a middle name and it is her mother's family name. In keeping with that tradition, Lucy would later name her first daughter Lucy Campbell McDonald.17
In the International Genealogical Index (IGI) and on FamilySearch, there is a Jean Campbell. In the Victorian immigration indexes and on her mother's death registration, she is known as Jane. It was apparently common for this name substitution in Scotland.18,19,8,20,21
Changing Fortunes on the Crofts
When John and Catherine Campbell married, they lived and raised their large family on the croft belonging to John's father, Archibald. In the early years the croft provided plenty of food through the planting of potato crops. In the 1841 UK census, we see John, Catherine and their young family living with John's parents, Archibald and Ann Campbell in Upper Kinchrackine, Glenorchy, Argyll.

The family's fortunes changed dramatically in 1846 with the arrival in the Scottish highlands of the devastating potato blight. Within a single season, the family and all those around them, were without their main food source.

Unable to now make a living on the croft, the family members were forced to work elsewhere to survive. By the 1851 UK census, a lot had changed. John's mother had died. John was no longer with the rest of his family, but in Kings House about 30 km to the north. Eldest son Alexander was working as a 'post boy and labourer' in Bunessan on the Isle of Mull about 80 km to the west. Eldest daughter Ann was working as a housemaid in the home of Lilly Campbell, her father's aunt, in Ardchattan about 23 km to the west. Twelve year old Donald was also there. And sixteen year old Janet was working as a domestic servant for the Marquis family just across the river in Stronmilchan, where Marquis senior was a crofter and Marquis junior was a shoemaker.

Catherine and the now seven younger children remained on the croft with John's 77 year old father.

In 1852, the government, through the newly established Highland Emigration Society, offered them a way out of their desperate plight. The offer was for plentiful food and work in booming Victoria. In return they would have to sell up and say goodbye forever to any family left behind. See From the Scottish Highlands to Booming Victoria.22,23,24
Ill-Fated Ticonderoga Voyage
John Campbell and two of his young children were three of 100 passengers who perished on the voyage to Australia aboard the ship Ticonderoga. His wife Catherine and eight of their children survived the infamous 1852 voyage. Eldest daughter Ann travelled to Victoria later. It is unlikely the 19 year old Alexander Campbell on board the Ticonderoga is our Alexander.

On 4 August 1852 in Liverpool, 795 migrants, predominantly Highland Scots, boarded the vessel for the voyage to Victoria. They were to help with the huge labour shortage in the colony following the discovery of gold. The Ticonderoga was a three-masted American 'double-decker' ship, but unforseen factors including the ship's design, the route chosen and the number of very young passengers, led to an unprecedented loss of life. Ship's doctor Dr Sanger reported disease about two weeks into the voyage with the first death due to fever on 23 August.14,13
There are no known paintings of the Ticonderoga; this is the Marco Polo, a similar double-decked clipper
By October, with storms, icebergs and fogs in freezing Southern Ocean regions, raging epidemics of typhus and scarlatina (scarlet fever) resulted in several deaths every day. John Campbell died on 5 October. His two year old daughter Jean died the same day. Having lost her husband and a daughter, Catherine was left on her own to look after the remaining nine children, some of whom were also sick. On 29 October, just three days before land was sighted, infant Peggy (Margaret) died.25,13
John's decision to move his family to Victoria cost him his life at age 44. But his decision was not in vain, as his family prospered in their newly adopted country.


  1. [S197] UK Census 1841, piece: SCT1841/512; place: Glenorchy-Innishail -Argyllshire; enumeration district: 2; civil parish: Glenorchy; ecclesiastical parish, village or island: -; folio: 2; page: 2; address: Upper Kinkrakin.
  2. [S253] Ticonderoga, website, Julie Ruzsicska, 2011, 'Passenger list C', <http://www.mylore.net/Ticonhome.html>.
  3. [S252] Fever Beach: The story of the migrant clipper 'Ticonderoga', its ill-fated voyage and its historic impact, QI Publishing, 2002, second 'Married' list, i.e. widows and widowers list.
  4. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI), Catherine MacCallum entry, film no. 471051, viewed 6 May 2012.
  5. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI), John Campbell entry, film no. 471051, viewed 10 June 1999.
  6. [S421] McIntyre Family, family history, 2017.
  7. [S223] Assisted Passenger Lists 1839-1871, index and register, Alexander Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  8. [S396] Catherine Campbell, death registration no. 3191, 3 January 1885.
  9. [S223] Assisted Passenger Lists 1839-1871, index and register, Janet Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  10. [S2] 'Janet', What's in a Name, online, viewed 13 October 2014. <http://www.whatsinaname.net/female-names/Janet.html
  11. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI), Lillias Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  12. [S223] Assisted Passenger Lists 1839-1871, index and register, Lillias Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  13. [S253] Ticonderoga, website, Julie Ruzsicska, 2011, <http://www.mylore.net/Ticonhome.html>.
  14. [S252] Fever Beach: The story of the migrant clipper 'Ticonderoga', its ill-fated voyage and its historic impact, QI Publishing, 2002.
  15. [S197] UK Census 1841, Scotland census, Archibald Campbell household, Glenorgyy, Argyll, viewed 20 November 2014.
  16. [S127] UK Census 1851, Archibald Campbell household, Upper Kinchrarckin, 18 (house number), Glenorchy, Lorn, Argyllshire, Scotland.
  17. [S2] 'Frequently Asked Questions: Can you explain "Scottish Naming Patterns"?', What's in a Name, online, viewed 14 October 2014 http://www.whatsinaname.net/faq.html#12
  18. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI), Jean Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  19. [S161] FamilySearch, online, Scotland, Births and Baptisms, 1564-1950, Jean Campbell entry, viewed 21 November 2014, https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/XYCK-5LT
  20. [S2] 'Jean', What's in a Name, online, viewed 13 October 2014. <http://www.whatsinaname.net/female-names/Jean.html
  21. [S388] Victoria, Australia, Assisted and Unassisted Passenger Lists 1839-1923, online, 22 December 1852, Jane Campbell entry, ship Ticonderoga, viewed 21 November 2014.
  22. [S197] UK Census 1841, transcript, Archibald Campbell household, Glenorchy, Argyll, Scotland, viewed 20 November 2014, Ancestry.
  23. [S127] UK Census 1851, transcript, Duncan Marguis household, Janet Campbell entry, Glenorchy and Inishail, Argyll, Scotland, viewed 20 November 2014, Ancestry.
  24. [S127] UK Census 1851, transcript, 'Lilly Campbell' household, Ann Campbell entry, Ardchattan, Argyll, Scotland, viewed 20 November 2014, Ancestry.
  25. [S252] Fever Beach: The story of the migrant clipper 'Ticonderoga', its ill-fated voyage and its historic impact, QI Publishing, 2002, p. 147.
  26. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI).
  27. [S40] Unassisted Passenger Lists 1852-1923, online index, PROV.