b. 1811, d. 3 January 1885
FatherDonald MacCallum1
MotherJanet Turner1

Birth, Death, Marriage

Catherine MacCallum was born in 1811 in Glenorchy, Argyll, Scotland.2,3 
She was christened on 25 January 1811 in Glenorchy, Argyll, Scotland.2 
She married John Campbell, son of Archibald Campbell and Ann Campbell, on 21 January 1832 in Glenorchy, Argyll, Scotland.4,5,6 
She died on 3 January 1885 in Rutherglen, Victoria.1 


John Campbell b. 1808, d. 5 Oct 1852
ChartsCampbell, John, descendant chart
McDonald, Irene, pedigree chart


Born in the Scottish Highlands, Catherine married John Campbell and they had twelve children there. When the potato blight struck, John and Catherine left with most of their children for a better life in Victoria. Tragically, John and their two youngest children died en route. Catherine initially settled in St Kilda before moving to northern Victoria where she died aged 74.
Apart from her 1811 birth, we know nothing of Catherine's life until she married at age 21.
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.7,1
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.8,1,9
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.10,11,12,13,1,14,15
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.16
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.17,18,1,19,20
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.21,22,23
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.13,12
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.24,12
On 1 November, the ship arrived at Port Phillip heads, and two days later moved to what is now called Ticonderoga Bay, the site of a proposed quarantine station, where evacuation to the beach began. Catherine and the remaining eight children remained on the beach for seven weeks. It wasn't until 19 December, and following a further 68 deaths, that quarantine was lifted. Survivers arrived at Queen's Wharf, then the Immigration Barracks on Christmas Eve 1852 to start their new life in the 'Lucky Country'.

For a more complete account of the Ticonderoga and its ill-fated voyage, see Ticonderoga: The Ship and the Journey.13,12
Settled in St Kilda
The now-widowed Catherine Campbell, took her family to settle in St Kilda. The two older girls, Janet and Lilly, probably lived where they found work. The younger children spent their childhood in St Kilda, receiving an education at the Church of England Grammar School.25,26
By the early 1860s, Catherine was living in northern Victoria where some of her family also lived.

Her daughter Lucy lived in Swan Hill and in 1863 Catherine helped deliver Lucy's son John McDonald.

And two of Catherine's daughters, Ann Dunbar and Lilly Neilson, lived in Rutherglen.27
On the 1863 birth registration for Lucy's son, John, the 'nurse by whom certified' is given as 'Catherine Campbelle'. While it could be Lucy's 19 year old sister or someone unrelated, perhaps Lucy's mother was there to help with the birth of her daughter's first child.27
Final Years
Catherine spent her later years in Rutherglen with at least three of her daughters nearby.
Caring for her Ann's Mother
Ann Dunbar and the family looked after Ann's mother Catherine in her final years. Ann's son Campbell Dunbar was the informant on Catherine's death registration.1
Catherine's will, dated 27 December 1884, directs £20 to daughter Lily Neilson, with the balance equally divided between daughter Ann Dunbar widow, Jessie Hamilton (wife of William Hamilton of Howlong, storekeeper), and Lily Neilson (wife of John Neilson of Modemere, farmer). Ebenezer Steggall of Rutherglen, minister of religion, is appointed sole executor.28
Catherine died a week after she made her will.

Probate was granted 10 April 1885. The total value of her estate was £178/7/0 of which the majority was a property at Wahgunyah. This two acre block was granted to her in 1865 and where she had a 'weatherboard cottage with four rooms and kitchen at the rear, let to tenant at 8/- per week'.

Land Titles records indicate the property as 315 All Saints Rd, Wahgunah.29,30,31
Five of Catherine's children had predeceased her when she died in Rutherglen. Her death certificate gives her age as 69, but other records indicate she was closer to 74.2,32
Catherine is buried in Carlyle cemetery, Wahgunyah with her daughter Ann, son-in-law John Dunbar and two grandchildren.
Headstone of John, Ann, Joseph & Mary Ellen Dunbar and Catherine Campbell, Carlyle cemetery, Wahgunyah


  1. [S396] Catherine Campbell, death registration no. 3191, 3 January 1885.
  2. [S277] International Genealogical Index (IGI), online, 25 January 1811, 'Catherine McCallum' entry, batch no. 7120909, viewed 2 January 2015, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/2:1:M1GT-76K
  3. [S223] Assisted Passenger Lists 1839-1871, index and register, Catherine Campbell entry, ship Ticonderoga, 1852.
  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. [S223] Assisted Passenger Lists 1839-1871, index and register, Janet Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  9. [S2] 'Janet', What's in a Name, online, viewed 13 October 2014. <http://www.whatsinaname.net/female-names/Janet.html
  10. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI), Lillias Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  11. [S223] Assisted Passenger Lists 1839-1871, index and register, Lillias Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  12. [S253] Ticonderoga, website, Julie Ruzsicska, 2011, <http://www.mylore.net/Ticonhome.html>.
  13. [S252] Fever Beach: The story of the migrant clipper 'Ticonderoga', its ill-fated voyage and its historic impact, QI Publishing, 2002.
  14. [S197] UK Census 1841, Scotland census, Archibald Campbell household, Glenorgyy, Argyll, viewed 20 November 2014.
  15. [S127] UK Census 1851, Archibald Campbell household, Upper Kinchrarckin, 18 (house number), Glenorchy, Lorn, Argyllshire, Scotland.
  16. [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
  17. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI), Jean Campbell entry, viewed 6 May 2012.
  18. [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
  19. [S2] 'Jean', What's in a Name, online, viewed 13 October 2014. <http://www.whatsinaname.net/female-names/Jean.html
  20. [S388] Victoria, Australia, Assisted and Unassisted Passenger Lists 1839-1923, online, 22 December 1852, Jane Campbell entry, ship Ticonderoga, viewed 21 November 2014.
  21. [S197] UK Census 1841, transcript, Archibald Campbell household, Glenorchy, Argyll, Scotland, viewed 20 November 2014, Ancestry.
  22. [S127] UK Census 1851, transcript, Duncan Marguis household, Janet Campbell entry, Glenorchy and Inishail, Argyll, Scotland, viewed 20 November 2014, Ancestry.
  23. [S127] UK Census 1851, transcript, 'Lilly Campbell' household, Ann Campbell entry, Ardchattan, Argyll, Scotland, viewed 20 November 2014, Ancestry.
  24. [S252] Fever Beach: The story of the migrant clipper 'Ticonderoga', its ill-fated voyage and its historic impact, QI Publishing, 2002, p. 147.
  25. [S1] The Swan Hill pioneer register only says that Lucy was educated at the Church of England Grammar school; I have assumed the other younger children did the same.
  26. [S101] Swan Hill Pioneer Register, fiche, 1988, 'McDonald, Lucy Turner.'
  27. [S371] John McDonald, birth registration no. 4984, 3 January 1863.
  28. [S413] 'Catherine Campbell', VPRS 7591/P2 Wills, unit 100, item 29/351, 27 December 1884.
  29. [S414] 'Catherine Campbell', VPRS 28/P0 Probate and Administration Files, unit 349, item 29/351, 10 April 1885.
  30. [S415] 'Catherine Campbell', VPRS 28/P2 Probate and Administration Files, unit 178, item 29/351, 10 April 1885.
  31. [S412] Libby Brown, personal communication, 4 February 2017.
  32. [S223] Assisted Passenger Lists 1839-1871, index and register.
  33. [S309] International Genealogical Index (IGI).
  34. [S40] Unassisted Passenger Lists 1852-1923, online index, PROV.