52 Ancestors #46 – Random Fact

In a previous newsletter, I wrote about Edmund Alexander Delisser, the surveyor who named the Nullarbor Plain. Following on from their time in South Australia, Edmund and Alfred were in Victoria and later followed their brother Adam Lymburner to Queensland. Adam is my great-grandfather, an analytical chemist, in Gympie. 

We learnt earlier that Edmund was in the 78th Highlanders and while stationed in Arden in 1851, he was attacked by a fanatical Arab and survived his wounds. Six years later he sold out of the army and from 1859 to 1864 he was engaged in survey works in South Australia including the fixing of boundaries of runs, exploring the Great Australian Bight, surveying the lines from Streaky Bay to Eucla by contract for the South Australian Government, surveying a road via Callington to Murray Bridge and preparing plans of city levels for the Adelaide Corporation.

He was Captain and Adjutant of the first Volunteer Force in South Australia. In 1864 he qualified as a surveyor in Victoria and in 1869 was registered in Queensland.

Between 1878 and 1881 he conducted the trial and permanent surveys of the Townsville Towers Line and in the same year was appointed District Engineer in charge of the Central Railway Division, resigning in 1883 through ill health. In May 1884, he was appointed Principal Assistant Engineer for the Central and Northern Division of Gladstone-Bundaberg survey.

Edmund went to Cairns and in conjunction with Walter Hodgson of Melbourne, invested in the gold mine of that name and over 13 years developed the claim.

At one time he took up on behalf of a South Australian syndicate, in which he was heavily interested, some islands near Port Essington, Northern Territory. The venture which had for its objective the formation of a cattle station was not a success.

When Edmund died on the 30th June 1900, he was described as a ‘dear old man’, gentle, courteous, ever kind and considerate for the welfare of others, and esteemed by all who knew him as an upright honourable gentleman. He was respected and admired throughout the district for his pluck and endurance and amongst the aborigines from the Upper Russell down the Mulgrave to the Lower Russell River, he was always referred to as ‘the old man. A term of which he was very proud.

Edmund died of heart failure while he was bathing in the water at Butchers Creek, near Goldsborough, Upper Mulgrave. He is buried at a spot near the Walter Hodgson Mine Site which has been described as one of the prettiest spots in North Queensland.

Several years ago I was contacted by Trina Callaghan from Malanda who had discovered where Edmund’s grave was and some years later the Tableland Bushwakers Club (QLD) placed a marker on Edmund’s grave. They sent these photos of Travis Teske next to the marker and the burial place beside Butchers Creek.

Source: DEATH OF MR. E. A. DELISSER. A SUDDEN ENDING. (1900, July 11). Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Qld. : 1878 – 1954), p. 7. Retrieved June 17, 2014, from Delisser South Australian Register, Aug 11, 1900 pg7
Morning Bulletin 1900 July 11 Death of Mr E A Delisser Rockhampton QLD


About Jenny MacKay

Just a person who is looking forward to retirement and enjoying the golden years!
This entry was posted in 52-Ancestors-52-Weeks, Blog, Delisser and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to 52 Ancestors #46 – Random Fact

  1. Random is one of the best finds. Love this Jenny. I’m so looking forward to my posts – many thoughts buzzing in my head.

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