NAME Ernest John Leslie Murrell
BORN 11 August 1889
DIED 1964
UNIT Depot
ENLISTED Sydney 6 June 1918
DISCHARGED Sydney 9 November 1918

 Ernest Murrell’s block was in the Parkes Land District near Peak Hill. It was a Settlement Purchase No. SP 1921/22.  The property named Kiora Farm, had originally been part of Hammond Estate.

 By 1924, Ernest Murrell was judged by the District Surveyor Mr. J. Benson ‘to not be  a satisfactory type’ chifley because he had little farming experience.[1]  At this date  Ernest was not residing permanently on the block and was working as a groom at the Commercial Hotel in Peak Hill. He had originally been given permission to work off his block for six months only but had been away longer than that.[2] Around this time Kiora Farm was being worked by a share-farmer.  In October 1924, the Under Secretary for Lands believed that due to his inexperience and debt which by then amounted to £455 (this included medical expenses for both himself and his wife), that he be given three months to transfer his holding to a suitable transferee or failing that, he would forfeit the holding. [3]

 His wife Margaret Murrell (nee Furner) whom he had married in 1921, was by April 1925, quite ill.  Covering the costs of her medical expenses was difficult, so Ernest applied to have his loan repayments and interest postponed. [4]   

According to the Commonwealth Electoral Roll of 1930, Ernest and his wife were still living on Kiora Farm at that date. [5] Although Ernest had again taken  up work as  groom at the Commercial Hotel in Peak Hill by 1936 and was still employed there in 1937.[6]  It is not known where his wife Margaret was living at this date as a search of Electoral Rolls failed to locate her.

 The block was eventually transferred to George H Sunderland sometime in 1929.[7]


[1] SRNSW:  Lands Department; NRS 8058, Returned Soldiers loan files; [12/7306 No. 8453] Ernest John Leslie Murrell, District Surveyor’s Report 21 October 1924.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid, Under-Secretary for Lands, Report, 16 April 1925.

[4] Ibid, Application for postponement or extension of time to pay interest or instalments, 4 April 1925.

[5] Commonwealth Electoral Roll 1930.

[6] Ibid, 1936 & 1937.

[7] SRNSW:  Lands Department, NRS 8076, Registers of Settlement Purchases, 1905-1929 Parkes Land District,  [3/6557]

Sources used to compile this entry:

State Records NSW: Lands Department;  NRS 8058, Returned Soldiers loan files, [12/7306 No. 8453] Ernest John Leslie Murrell.

State Records NSW: Lands Department NRS 8076, Registers of Settlement Purchases, 1905-1929, Parkes Land District, [3/6557]

NSW Registry of Birth Death and Marriages, Marriage Index,  [1921/11507] Ernest John Leslie Murrell and Margaret Furner.

 National Archives of Australia: B2455, First Australian Imperial Force Personnel Dossiers, Ernest John Leslie Murrell online: