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Traditional Custodians of Illawarra Land
Local communities of Aboriginal people were the original inhabitants and Traditional Custodians of Illawarra Land. Their dialect is a variant of the Dharawal language. Before European settlement, the Aboriginal people of the region lived in small family groups with complicated social structures and close associations with specific areas. Suburb boundaries do not reflect the cultural boundaries of the local Aboriginal community. Traditional Custodians today are descendants of the original inhabitants and have ongoing spiritual and cultural ties to the Land and waterways where their ancestors lived.
In 1829 Henry Osborne received 2560 acres in the Dapto district. He named his property Marshall Mount from his wife's maiden name. His wife, Sarah, was the daughter of the Rev. Benjamin Marshall. The Osborne's erected a stone dwelling on their property which was called Marshall Mount House.
Land grants - the following grants included land in Marshall Mount
- Henry Osborne (Marshall Mount - 2560 acres)
- Charles Throsby Smith (Calderwood - 1280 acres)
- George Johnston (Johnston's Meadows - 1300 acres)
Henry and Sarah Osborne and "Marshall Mount"
Henry Osborne was a wealthy Irish immigrant to whom the government granted 2560 acres in the Dapto district in 1829. He named the property "Marshall Mount" after his wife Sarah’s maiden name. By the 1840s he had added to his estate by securing Charles Throsby Smith’s "Calderwood", Elyard’s "Avondale", William Browne’s "Athanlin", Brook’s "Exmouth" and numerous smaller grants.
The Osbornes had become one of the most powerful families in the region. Henry and Sarah initially settled at "Marshall Mount" in Pumpkin Cottage under fairly primitive conditions. Later Osborne recruited skilled labour to build Marshall Mount House.
In 1851 Henry Osborne entered politics, he was elected to the Legislative Council as member for East Camden, and represented his constituency in the first Legislative Assembly. (McDonald, 1976; Dowd, B.T. , 1960; Hagan, 1997.)
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