NAME John Carter
BORN c1885 Manchester, England
DIED 20 June 1964 at Muswellbrook, NSW
UNIT 30th Battalion
ENLISTED Denman 11 July 1916
DISCHARGED Sydney 11 June 1918 Medically unfit

John Carter married Evelyn Carmichael Saunders in 1915 before he left Sydney with the 30th Battalion on 9 November 1916.  On his return to Australia, the couple settled near Aberdeen where Carter took up soldier settlement block No. 172, in Dartbrook Soldier Settlement consisting of 102 acres.[1]  He settled on the land in January 1920 hoping to undertake dairying.  He was lucky enough to have one of the blocks located alongside a creek.  He was making some effort to succeed and on one eight acre section of his land, put in an irrigation plant and planted five acres of Lucerne.[2]

Life was not easy for him on the farm, as by 1922 due to a rabbit plague, he was forced to apply for money to purchase netting to restrict their movements onto his land. In 1924 however, due to ‘unfavourable seasons’ he was having trouble making his repayments and applied for an extension of time to meet them. Drought was playing havoc with his ability to farm successfully.  The District Surveyor reported,

The recent drought prevented even a sufficient return to pay living expenses and the small area of land necessitated months of hand feeding stock.[3]

In November 1925, the District Surveyor reported again that the country was in a deplorable condition  due to the drought.  Despite this around January 1926, Carter was still milking eighteen cows.  In a period covering six year, the settlers on Dartbrook had only one good year.


[1] SRNSW: Lands Department; NRS 8058, Returned Soldiers loan files;  [12/6955 No. 3713]Statement of Evidence, John Carter 8 June 1927

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid, Assistant District Surveyor to Soldier Settlement Board, 29 April 1924.

Sources used to compile this entry:

State Records NSW:  Lands Department; NRS 8058, Returned Soldiers loan files, [12/6955 No. 3713] John Carter.

National Archives of Australia: B2455, First Australian Imperial Force Personnel Dossiers (John Carter) online: