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HORGAN, Michael Daniel 1881 - 1961

Michael Daniel HORGAN was born at Coree Township, near Jerllderie NSW on the 27th November 1881. His parents were Daniel HORGAN who was aged 40 and Ellen CARROLL aged 31. The attending Midwife at his birth was Margaret IRWIN. Just a few months after he was born his father died leaving his mother to raise him and older brother John on her own in Jerilderie NSW.

I remember him as uncle Mick when I was a boy and he left an ever lasting impression on me. It was the way he spoke and how he expressed himself that I remember most. I recall his big moustache and his vigour around the yard, the way he treated his sheep dogs with authority and gentleness.

His house was named "Tralee" and he lived on the corner of Coreen and Kennedy streets, Jerilderie - opposite the St Josephs Catholic Church. St Josephs Catholic School is next to the church and some of the land in the schoolyard was donated by him for the school, I believe that this was after some argument uncle Mick had with the Government. They could not take or touch the land if it was church property. He was a very devoted catholic and generously gave in so many ways to support the church. One legacy of Michael HORGAN still stands today, and that is; three burial plots at the catholic section of the Jerilderie Cemetery were donated by him for any priest who died in the area to be interned, without cost. I know that today two of these burial lots are vacant.

His house "Tralee" is made up of other Horgan houses from the district. The original, I believe came from Coree Township, the other half from his mothers house at the AVOCA Property which was added on in late 1920's or early 1930's. Uncle Mick was a businessman and my research into his life explains this - a lot.

In 1899 he took up a settlement block, that was situated 5 miles from Jerilderie on the South Coree Road, and which he retained until his death. This was one of two original settlement blocks in the district retained by original settlers. John KNIGHT held the other block, at the time. He continued in his pastoral pursuits until illness confined him to bed, from his bed he continued to manage his property, which had turned into thousands of acres during his lifetime.

Michael HORGAN was also a Counsellor for 29 consecutive years. He began civic duties as a counsellor of the Wunnamurra Shire in 1908 and served continuously until 1918, when Wunnamurra Shire ceased to exist. He was Shire President in 1909 and 1916. He then was a Counsellor from the inception of Jerilderie Shire in 1918 until 1937, being president from 1920 until 1937.

Jerilderie Shire Council in a tribute to him named the swimming pool park "HORGAN Park" when the area was upgraded in about 1958. In 1987 "HORGAN WALK" was named after him, which incorporated "HORGAN Park"

Apart from his services to the community as a counsellor for 29 years, Michael HORGAN was also interested in most other organisations of Jerilderie. To name a few of these interests, he was over the years President of The Hospital Board, President and until his death, a Trustee of the Mechanics Institute, President of the Jerilderie Rifle Club, and the Riverina Rifle Club Union, President of the Race Club, a Vice President of the Golf Club and was instrumental in obtaining the present club site for the purpose.

A keen rifleman, he competed at prize meetings at Anzac Range in Sydney quite regularly. His only other sporting interest was Australian Rules football, at which he performed quite creditably.

Michael HORGAN married Johanna E. J. (Jane) CURTIN in 1917 and two daughters were born. Cornelia in 1918 and Mary in 1922. A third daughter was stillborn and interned at Jerilderie Catholic cemetery in an unmarked grave, alongside her cousin the baby Michael HORGAN who died in 1916.

Michael HORGAN died on the 19th August 1961 at his home "Tralee" in Coreen Street. He suffered from 1). Hypostatic Broncho Pneumonia, 2). Cerebro Vascular Thrombosis and 3). Auricular Fibrillation Senile Myocardis. His physician was Dr. C. S. VEAR, he was nursed during his illness by his devoted daughters Cornelia (who was Sister Mary Francis a nursing nun from the Nursing Hospital at Young and Albury NSW) and Mary who we know as Molly HORGAN, who also was a fully trained nurse. I was told by my Aunty Margie that he died a very painful and slow death.

His funeral was held at St. Josephs Catholic Church, Jerilderie on the following Sunday afternoon. A large gathering of Jerilderie and surrounding district residents attended. The service was conducted by the Rev Father STANLEY. A guard of honour comprising members of the Holy Name Society and past and present Shire Counsellors was formed at the Church and again at the graveside. The Undertaker was A.J ROE and witnesses to his burial were J.M and P.K FENAUGHTY. His death was registered at Jerlderie on the 31st August 1961 with his daughter Cornelia (Sister Mary Frances) being the informant. Today there is a large framed picture of him in the foyer of the Jerilderie Shire Council Building.

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Thumbnail 1 This is Sister Mary Francis ( Cornelia Horgan with Laurie Henery (From Jerilderie Shire Council) taken in 1987 at the opening of HORGAN WALK in Jerilderie NSW

Thumbnail 2 The grave of Michael Daniel HORGAN at Jerilderie Cemetery NSW.

Proposed Railway Line Jerilderie Towards Deniliquin

In 1924 the Legislative Assembly, New South Wales Government formed a Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works. The proposal was to run a railway line from Jerilderie NSW towards Deniliquin NSW to transport the massive wheat, grain being generated in the region.Michael Daniel HORGAN, as a landholder and grazier was called before this committee to give testimony to support the rail line.

Here is an extract from the report, which was obtained from the NAA Web site.

Michael Daniel HORGAN, Grazier, Near Jerilderie, was sworn in and examined: -

175. Mr. Doe] How much land do you hold?
MDH] 3,000 acres. The country between Wunnamurra Siding and Pine Hills is suitable for wheat growing and closer settlement.

176. Q] Would a line from Wunnamurra Siding running practically straight to Deniliquin, touch the centre of the Pine Hills District?
MDH] No, with a slight deviation south it would.

177. Q] would it then benefit the soldier's settlement. ?
MDH] Yes, it would influence the land in the parishes of Coree South, Booraboorilly and Currabunganung. All that land is suitable for agriculture. It is as good as any wheat land in New South Wales, being rich loamy country easily worked.

178. Q] what is the cost of clearing that land for the plough?
MDH] about £1 per acre. It would average about 15 shillings per acre. Its present value is about £4.10 per acre.

179. Q] Have you experience of wheat growing in this district?
MDH] Yes, I have worked as a farm hand and have grown wheat.

180. Q] what is a fair living area in your district?
MDH] about 1,000 acres.

181. Q] Are there many people growing wheat in your district?
MDH] No, The seasons have not been favourable. I have sufficient lands to keep me as a grazier. I would say take the line off at Wunnamurra.

182. Q] In the event of the line going from Jerilderie you are of the opinion that it should not go direct to Deniliquin, but that it should swing a little south so as to pass the Tuppal Soldiers Settlement and the Pine Hills country?
MDH] Yes

183. Q] If the expense of taking off at Wunnamurra it is not too great from an administration standpoint you prefer it should go from there?
MDH] I do

End of Examination:

As a point of interest this railway line never went ahead.

Trustees Appointed - Jerilderie Cemetery

Newspaper ItemExtracted from the Albury Banner and Wodonga Express dated Friday 17 September 1920

Rev. Joseph C. Gibson, Messrs. Samuel McCaughey, Arthur W. Sleeman and S. P. Wilson, Esq. (in lieu of Messrs. R. Hardie and. J. D. Rankin, deceased, and L. Thorburn, resigned) have been appointed trustees of the general cemetery at Jerilderie, set apart for Presbyterian burial ground. Rev. Francis W. Hartigan, Messrs. John Mitchell jun., John Ryan, jun. and Michael Horgan, Esq.(in lieu of Rev. P. McAlroy, resigned, and J. Mitchell and J. Ryan, deceased) have been appointed trustees of the portion of general cemetery at Jerilderie, set apart for Roman Catholic burial ground.

Jerilderie Hospital Board Presentation - Mr. M. D. HORGAN

Newspaper ItemExtracted from the Jerilderie Herald and Urana Advertiser dated Thursday 22 November 1934

A pleasing little function took place following the of the hospital directors on Saturday afternoon last, when a presentation was made to the President (Mr. M. D. Horgan) by his fellow-directors in appreciation of his valued services as President of the institution. At the conclusion of the ordinary business Mr. W. W. Elliott (vice president) said that usually with public men tribute was paid them when they left the district. Any opportunity was rarely afforded of expressing appreciation of the services of the permanent, residents, who were always giving assistance in public affairs. The suggestion had been made that the directors should in some way show their appreciation of their President's efforts, and the matter had been enthusiastically taken up. Mr. Horgan had been President for many years, and had been connected with the hospital administration as long as he (the speaker) could remember. No man in Jerilderie had given more time to public affairs, and the directors were pleased in some small way to show their appreciation of that fact, and the esteem in which he was held by them all. Mr. C. W. L. Bull (vice-president) said he had pleasure in supporting the remarks of the previous speaker. They could get no better man for the position of President. He was possessed of sound judgment, and he (the speaker) hoped that they would have Mr. Horgan as President for very many years to come. Mr. R. H. Hunt (Hon. Treasurer) said that if ever associated with hospitals in other centres where he may be situated, he hoped he would meet with as capable a President as Mr. Horgan. The Hospital was in a sound position, and this was largely attributable to the, efforts and careful' administration of their President, and to him the hospital owed a lot. Messrs. T. G. S. Bennett and F. A. McPherson also spoke in similar strains Mr. A. E. McVitty (secretary) said that the President was an inspiration to him in his work, and he hoped that Mr. Horgan would be in the position for many years to come. Mr. Elliott, on behalf of the directors, then presented Mr. Horgan with a handsome case of cutlery, inscribed as follows: Presented to M. D. Horgan Esq by his fellow directors, in appreciation of valued services as President, Jerilderie District Hospital, 1934. The speaker said he was honoured to have the privilege of making the presentation. It carried with it the very best wishes of the directors, and was just a small token of the respect and esteem in which they held their President, and an appreciation of his valued services to the institution. Responding, Mr. Horgan said he always felt he had the confidence of the directors and he appreciated it. He thanked them from the bottom of his heart for their tribute. He felt proud of the confidence and esteem, and the spirit that had prompted them in making the presentation and he appreciated that. He did not think that he had put a great deal of work into the institution, but he had got a great deal of pleasure out of helping. To carry on a position successfully one must have the co-operation of his fellow-directors. He was pleased to be able to think that he had received that co-operation. In times when the Hospital's Commission seemed almost to be in conflict with the directors of country hospitals, it was pleasing to think that the superintendent had visited the place and expressed himself as pleased with the administration of the hospital at Jerilderie. That was largely due to careful and wise administration by the directors, which were a united body. He reiterated that he had the confidence of the board, and tendered them his most grateful thanks for their expressions of appreciation and their presentation.

LONG SERVICE APPRECIATED AND RECOGNISED - Unveiling of Mr. M. D. Horgan's Portrait

Newspaper ItemExtracted from the Jerilderie Herald and Urana Advertiser dated Thursday 17 January 1952

The Shire President, Cr. A. F. Crockett, welcomed and thanked Mr. M. D. Horgan for his attendance at the Council on the unveiling of his, Mr. Horgan's Portrait, and paid tribute to the services rendered the community over the record long period of office, 29 years. Firstly as a Councillor on the old Wunnamurra Shire and later on Jerilderie Shire, of which he was President for 17 years.

Cr. Crockett remarked that no doubt Mr. Horgan and the community were wondering at the long delay before recognition, of his services was made, but it was only , whilst Rev. Lundy was compiling the 'History of Jerilderie' that Mr. Gilbert's attention was drawn to the fact, who duly brought it to the Council's notice. All Councillors unanimously agreed that some recognition to Mr. Horgan was deserving, and it was decided to have a portrait suitably mounted and hung. Mr. Gilbert Shire Clerk, Mr. Smale (Engineer), Mr. Chapman (Electrical Engineer), and Councillors McPherson and Bleeman supported the President's remarks. The only remaining Councillor who had served with Mr. Horgan, Cr. Liddle was called upon to unveil the portrait. Like all previous speakers, I am very pleased to be associated with this ceremony today. Of all Councillors present I am the only one who sat in Council with Mr. Horgan, and the only one who can speak of his services to this Shire from actual experience. Mr. Horgan was President of the Shire during the whole of the term that we served together, and I can tell you that he was a very conscientious Councillor and always on the job. There is no doubt that he had a very intimate knowledge of the workings of local government and of the Local Government Act. It was because of this know ledge that Mr. Horgan made such a' good Councillor and President. There are two filings I remember most as being done during our term together on this Council. The first was extension of the Town Hall. The hall we had was too small and its extension was absolutely necessary. The work was undertaken in 1930 which you will remember was a very difficult time, being during the depression. The other point I remember clearly was the raising of the rate. It was only about 1¼ pence in the £ and we put it up to 1¾ pence. This caused a great out-cry and ultimately we had to make a reduction. As you all know Mr. Horgan was a Councillor from 1908 to 1937, and occupied the Presidential chair for about twenty years, which is a record for this Shire. I want to congratulate Mr. Horgan on his long term, and say that I think it most appropriate that we are recognising the previous goad work done by Mr. Horgan. In conclusion I would like to congratulate Mr. Horgan on his present good health, and extend to him my best wishes for his future health and happiness. Gentlemen, I have very much pleasure in now unveiling Mr. Horgan's portrait.

Mr. Horgan in reply, thanked Council for the great honour it had bestowed upon him, and for the kindly and the thought flattering remarks passed by the gentlemen present. He outlined the original formation of the Local Government Organisation from the first stages of compiling the Electoral rolls, and the foundation of Wunnamurra Shire, his entry into the field of Local Government and some of his experiences during his association with Council.

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