A little bit of background. It is my aim to follow the family back to when they arrived in Australia and describe if possible the ‘push’ and ‘pull’ factors that led to the decision to leave Scotland and migrate to Australia. I will begin with Robert James’s grandparents- Robert Hood and Anne Reyburn.
Robert and Anne were married in 1822 in Kilmarnock. According to Wikipedia (?) Robert was a colliery foreman who later became a manager. His eldest son, Archibald, worked in the mines from the age of thirteen and later when his father could afford his education went on to study and qualified as a mining engineer. Archibald went on to become a major industrialist and coal mine owner moving from Kilmarnnock to Edinbrugh and then to Wales where there is a statue of him at Llwynypia.
From my research I believe Robert married three times and had six children to his first wife, Anne Reyburn however no other children to the other wives. He died in Kilmarnock at the age of 71.
According to tales in the family William was a remittance man and possibly came to Australia at his brother’s behest. In British history, a remittance man was an emigrant, often from Britain to a British colony, supported by regular payments from home on the expectation that he stay away. I cannot find his passage to Australia and do not know when he arrived or his port of entry. He was forty when he married in October of 1866 and listed his place of abode as Inverell NSW. This was an area which had attracted settlers from Scotland and by 1866 small selectors were making their claims and establishing wheat farming. https://www.aussietowns.com.au/town/inverell-nsw
Below: The two older sons of William Hood, Archibald (1826-1890) and William (1823-1902)