Hello there! My name is Gary Smith and I’m the owner and editor of this website. I was born in Ceduna, South Australia in 1963 and my mother, Lorraine Smith (nee Harper), was born in Ballarat in 1937. Her father was Robert John Harper and her Mother was Annie Catherine Trew.


The first Harpers in our tree to come to Australia were Andrew & Maria Harper. Andrew, who was a wheelwright from Templepatrick (Antrim, Ireland), made the long voyage to Australia aboard the Marquis of Bute with his wife Maria and their three children in 1841.


The first Trew in our tree to emigrate was Samuel Trew, a brickmaker from Witham (Essex, England). It is unknown how he travelled to Australia but it is very likely that he sailed to Australia from Cork, Ireland with the 40th Regiment of Foot 2nd Somersetshire 1852. It is believed he was with George Trew who was most likely his cousin. Samuel married his first wife, Charlotte Moorse in Portland Victoria in 1855.


Samuel Bown was born in Bakewell, Derbyshire England in 1833. It is unknown exactly when he travelled to Australia but he appeared on the census in England in 1851 and there was a Samuel Bown on the passenger list for the ship ‘Dirigo’ which sailed from Liverpool on August 8 1854 and arrived in Adelaide on November 22 1854. The passenger list on The Ships List incorrectly lists him as Samuel Brown. This excerpt from The South Australian Register on November 23 1854 has him correctly listed as Samuel Bown.



Samuel married Catherine Long, who was born in Cork Ireland, on 9 Dec 1861 at the Streatham Hotel in Streatham Victoria. They had 9 children including twins Alice and Elizabeth between 1862 and 1878. Samuel was 51 years old when he drowned in a waterhole.


I’d like to thank a few people (in no particular order) for providing me with some of the fruits of their research after contacting me online.

Robert (Les) Harper for providing much of the Harper/Trew background and photos.

Cando who was incredibly generous on the Rootschat Forum.

Maurie Harper for providing the missing link!

John Schubert for providing a wealth of Bown/Trew research.

Brian Reilly for providing Ryan & Harper information.

Allen Bills for providing a possible Harper/Hartshorn revelation.

Wayne Hilshorst for providing information about Samuel & George Trew



  1. Ern.lowing

    Hi Gary it has been 70 Years that my
    Wife Marian had any contact with the
    Harper Family,her Mother is Eileen
    Harper who Died when Marian was
    one Year 10 Months old it is in vèry
    recent times the Family Tree was
    discovered through a friend of the
    Family. We have since come across
    your information which is all very
    interesting, Marian would like to meet
    up with her closest relatives if possible
    some time in the future.
    Well done with your search and info!!

    For future contact Marians
    Mobile No 0499600064

    Or Email Ern.lowing@jotun.com.au


  2. Tracie johnson

    Hi Gary, my great grandmother was Mary Trew. My brother Graeme ferguson and sister Helen Sheffield have been tracing the Oehm, Trew, Ferguson family tree they have quite a bit of info and photos. Not sure if you are already in contact with them but if not email me and I can pass on their info to you or your info to them. I noticed you had photos of my mum Phyllis with gran trew so you may have info they don’t or they may have some you could use.


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