Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
The area around Aberdeen has had human settlement for at least 8,000 years, when small villages lay around the mouths of the River Dee and River Don. The city's name came from the celtic 'Aber' meaning the mouth of and the river name Dee, literally meaning at the mouth of the Dee. Old Aberdeen, to the north of the modern city, and on the river Don was formerly known as Aberdon.
Perth, Perthshire, Scotland
Known to the Romans as Bertha from the Celtic 'Aber The' meaning mouth of the Tay. The city has been a Royal Burgh since the 13thC and was a Royal residence throughout the middle ages. Perth is often refered to as the Ancient Capital of Scotland on this account.
John Brebner Robertson
& Mary Ann Rennie
John Brebner Robertson abt 1815, in Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
- 4 jul 1901 in Lilydale, Tasmania, Australia
(son of John Brebner of Tarland, Aberdeen, Scotland and Isobel Strachan -also known as Robertson of Tarland, Aberdeenshire, Scotland) (see bottom of page for lineage or go to http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com
in 1856 at Wesleyan Church, Underwood, Tasmania, Australia
Mary Ann Rennie 1830 in Perth, Perthshire, Scotland
- 6 aug 1910 in Bangor, Tasmania, Australia
John Brebner arrived in Tasmania aboard the Isabella on the 21 may 1842 as convict number 6911. The Isabella left Woolwich, England on the 29th jan 1842. (Woolwich is near greenwich in London but in 1842 was a small town in Kent. My understanding is that Woolwich became part of London in about 1950)
John had served as a foot soldier in the 1st regiment Scottish Royals, as had his father (John Brebner) before him. John added Robertson to his surname which was gazetted on the 25th June 1853, for reasons not known. Did he choose Robertson because it's one of the most common names in Aberdeenshire or maybe his mother may have been of the Robertson Clan. The Robertson's are part of The Farquaharson Clan)
The earliest Brebner found is John Brebner of Corskie, born in 1630. He was a merchant in Aberdeen and in 1653 he married Agnes Moir who is believed to have been the daughter of John Moir, 1st of Stoneywood, Aberdeen - http://www.torphins.org/brebner.asp To date no link has been found between our Brebners and this family but may well still be there to find. John A. Brebner of http://www.brebner.com/ has been most helpful in assisting the quest to find more information on our John Brebner.
The Brebner name is associated with the clans of Stirling, Edinburgh, Farquharson
This following report is received with thanks, due to research by another Brebner descendant: Pam Sherlock nee Norton
John Brebner in 1841 received 14 years for desertion.
Protestant: can read and write
Gaol Report: None Hulk Report: Good Served: 1st Regt. Scottish Royals - known to have (at least) -2 brothers, and 3 sisters
John embarked 8/01/1842 - Arrived Tasmania 21/05/1842 on the 'Isabella'. His trade was listed as a ploughman and labourer.
He was 24 years old and single. Born about 1818?? native of Aberdeen Scotland and died 1901 Tasmania aged 83.
Description: Height: 5'9-3/4 Complexion: Fair Head: Small Visage: Long Forehead: Medium Height Eyebrows: Light Eyes: Blue
Nose: Mouth: Small Remarks: D. on left side - 1st Regiment Royals
14 years Period of probation: 2 years 21/05/1844 Released from 1st stage of probation
Probation Pass Holder 3rd Class 12/06/1845 1st Class 2/03/1847 3rd Class 13/95/1851 Tick of Leave 29/03/1853
Ticket of Leave revoked - Absent from muster.
25/06/1853 Gazetted John Brebner added the name Robertson, for reasons not clear, to his actual name. Many people in the early Colonial days were ashamed of their convict beginnings, and tried to hide it, maybe that is why John Brebner changed his name to Robertson. The name of "Brebner" has been carried on as a middle name with many of his descendants.
(John A. Brebner from his website suggested we look on our John Brebner's mothers side for the family name of Robertson)
"Extract from "The Service of British Regiments in Canada and North America" complied by Charles H. Stewart, librarian and published by the Department of National Defense in Ottawa in 1962. page 77 "2nd Battalion" "7 July 1836 the Service Companies left Cork--arrived Quebec 24 August on Transport "Maitland" to Cape Diamond and Claudel Barracks. 2 May 1837, detachment to Grosse Isle, rest on S.S. "British America" to Montreal with detachment at Sorel - other detachment back from Grosse Isle in August -- in November to St. Charles -- 13 December to St. Eustache and back to Montreal. January 1839, H.Q. at Montreal, detachments at St. Eustache, St. Hillaire, Quebec and the outposts. 1 February, 1 company to St. Helen's. March 1 company to Kingston and then back to Montreal -- draft arrived on H.M.S. "Hercales" (I expect that really should be Hercules?) (sic) from United Kingdom -- flank companies to Prescott, others to Boucherville and back 21 November, 1838." "Stayed in Montreal till 1 May 1840, then marched to London, Ontario -- arrived 15 May, remained there for 3 years. June 1843, march to Toronto, arrived 24 June. 26 September by boat to Quebec on "Premier" transported on 28 October. Struck rock in Cape Chat Bay in Gulf of St. Lawrence on 4 November a total wreck -- returned to Quebec on "Unicorn", Jesuit Barracks. 20 May 1844, H.M.S. "Resistance" to Halifax, arrived 1 June -- on 22 October Grenadier and No. 1 company on H.M.S. "Hermes" for Barbadoes, rest on on H.M.S. "Pique" and "Eurydice." "4 April 1845 1st Ballalion arrived Halifax then to St. John, NB. -- on to Frederiction. 2 company at St. John, remained there till 6 May 1850 then on "Marlin" to Halifax, 15 July 1851 on H.M.S. "Apollo" for Spithead."
Quote from letter from Canada:- 'A couple of things struck me about this account of the 2nd battalion, not the least being the amount of traveling they did. To march from Montreal to Kingston is 190 miles, Montreal to London would be about 450 miles. To make this latter trek in 15 days suggest a rate of 30 miles per day, pretty good going for a foot soldier on what was barely a cart track in 1840. The mosquitoes and black-flies must have been a misery. The 3 year posting at London without travel would have left a no doubt homesick John a lot of time to consider his position.'
The name of Brebner Robertson, has died out in the male line, John, James and Andrew did not marry, but it is carried on through the female line.
Maybe 150 years+ forward and the Royal Scots might still not like to have a deserter associated with their name. If we read the reports of the day I wonder, how many soldiers just "sat down" no longer able to push themselves into one further step.
I'm sure the hardship of those early colonial days in Tasmania met and even surpassed the conditions of the
Canadian 'walk' and as with all our pioneers their lives deserve the accolades we can give them for
steadfastness and endurance in very primitive living conditions
The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment), once known as the Royal Regiment of Foot, was the oldest, and
therefore most senior, infantry regiment of the line in the British Army, having been raised in 1633
during the reign of Charles I of Scotland. The regiment existed until 2006, when it amalgamated with
the King's Own Scottish Borderers to become the Royal Scots Borderers, 1st Battalion of the
newly-formed Royal Regiment of Scotland.
The regiment was first raised in 1633 as the Royal Regiment of Foot by Sir John Hepburn, under a royal
warrant from Charles I, on the Scottish establishment for service in France. In 1751, the regiment was
titled the 1st (Royal) Regiment of Foot, ranked as the most senior of the line regiments of infantry
In February 1812, the regiment was retitled as the 1st Regiment of Foot (Royal Scots), the first official appearance of the popular name.The 1st battalion was sent to Ireland after the end of the Napoleonic wars, and stationed there from 1816 until 1825, when it was moved to the West Indies, where it remained until 1835. The 2nd battalion, however, had a more active time; based in India, it was involved in the Third Anglo-Maratha War, where it fought at the Battle of Nagpore (1817) and Battle of Mahidpur (1818), and in the First Anglo-Burmese War of 1824-26. It moved to Scotland in 1830, and to Canada in 1836, where it was involved in the Rebellions of 1837-1838. A move to the West Indies in 1843 was complicated by half the regiment being shipwrecked and delayed several months, but was successful, and the regiment finally returned to Scotland in 1846. More information on the Canadian rebellions and the part played by Governor Arthur in sending USA, English and Scottish soldiers as prisoners to Van Diemens Land (now called Tasmania) may be found at various websites such as: http://www.australianhumanitiesreview.org/archive/Issue-September-2002/frances.html
John Brebner married Maryann Rennie at the Wesleyan Church, Underwood Tasmania in 1856.
Little is known (by me) about Maryann. She shows in a 1901 census of the Underwwod District as living at Bangor and calling herself MaryAnn Brebner without the addition of Robertson to the name. I did find a Maryann Rennie as coming to Tasmania in 1848 but it did not include enough information to establish if this was 'our' Maryann. She must have arrived in Tasmania around this time and would have worn clothes in Scotland like the figure here.
Many young women were encouraged to Australia,
as assisted immigrants, by the British Establishment.
They worked as servants and were encouraged to marry
the ever growing male population
John and Maryann continued to live in this area of
Bangor, North East Tasmania until their deaths.
They had 7 children - 4 girls and 3 boys. None of the
sons had children so the Robertson name died out.
The Brebner name was carried forward as a middle name into the next generation. The Brebner Robertson family name lives on
through the daughters of John and Mary Ann Brebner Robertson
Underwood Tasmania, Australia
The children of John Brebner Robertson and MaryAnn Rennie
1. Isabella Brebner Robertson 19 apr 1854 Westbury, Tasmania, Australia
- 24 feb 1888 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
married 9 oct 1878 in Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
2nd son of James and Ann Baker nee Hill
William Baker 7 jun 1850 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia - 28 aug 1927 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
Isabella & William Baker had 5 children
Clara Annie Baker (1. William Henry Merritt) - 10 children
(2. married John Knight),
William Edward John Baker (married Elizabeth Haas) - 5 children
Arthur Abraham Baker (married Ellen Arnott) - 5 children
John James Baker 20 nov 1883 Ringarooma, Tasmania, Australia
- 7 mar 1884 Ringarooma, Tasmania, Australia
James Thomas Baker (married Selina Hill) - 6 children
2. John Brebner Robertson 16 dec 1856 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia - 1875 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
3. James Brebner Robertson 31 may 1857 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia - 1893 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
4. Andrew Brebner Robertson 18 nov 1859 Underwood, Tasmania, Australia - 1939 Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
5. Ann Christina "Annie" Brebner Robertson 1 dec 1861 Launceston, Tasmania, Australia - jan 1902 Bangor, Tasmania, Australia
married 27 dec 1887 in Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
eldest son of Thomas and Elizabeth Crawford nee Hill
John Crawford 11 may 1856 Hobart, Tasmania, Australia - 27 may 1940 Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Annie & John had 5 children
Thomas James Crawford (married Alma Barrett) - 3 children
John Henry "Jack" Crawford (married Esther Harriet Barrett) - 4 children
Andrew Brebner Crawford (married Ruby Newton) - no children
Irene May "Rene" Crawford (married John James "Jim" Gearing) - 4 children
6. Ada Victoria Brebner Robertson 17 may 1868 Pipers River, Underwood, Tasmania, Australia
- 28 may 1930 General Public Hospital, Launceston, Tasmania Australia
married 12 sep 1887 in Wesleyan Church, Underwood Tasmania, Australia
4th son of John Henry & Mary (nee McGrath) Hammersley
William Henry Hammersley 24 dec 1860 East Tamar, Tasmania, Australia - 16 feb 1946 at home Bangor Tasmania Australia
Ada & William had 10 children
1.John Thomas Hammersley (married Hilda May Barrett) - 3 children
2. Alfred "Alfie" Hammersley (married Marion Emma Barrett) - 16 children
3. Mary Ann May Hammersley (married John Gillespie) - 4 children
4. William Henry "One Arm Bill" Hammersley (1. married Amy Boscoe nee Rowbottom)
(2. married Winifred Goold)
5. Ivy Isabel Hammersley (married Harold Henry Thow Jones) - 5 children
6. Thomas Leslie Hammersley (married Caroline Cole)
7. James Hammersley 1901 Lilydale, Tasmania, Australia - 1901 Lilydale, Tasmania, Australia
8. Robert Gilbert Hammersley ( married Madge Sirbella Baker) - 10 children
9. Hector Hamilton Hammersley 29 oct 1907 Bangor, Tasmania, Australia
- 17 sep 1967 Repatriation Hospital, Hobart, Tasmania Australia
10. Lorna Jane Hammersley ( married William George Bassett) - 7 children
7. Rennie Johanna Brebner Robertson 1870 Underwood, Tasmania, Australia - 1942 Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
married 1903 in Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
Robert John Clark 1862 -1912 Turners Marsh, Tasmania, Australia
(Robert John Clark was baptised as Robert John Plummer)
Rennie and Robert had 3 children 2 daughters and one son
This page was created by Gaele Arnott (great great grand-daughter of John & Mary Ann (nee Rennie) Brebner Robertson
Isabella Brebner Robertson
Please note that buttons coloured blue are linked to the pages indicated. The white buttons are pages not yet published to the web
Ancestry for John Brebner Robertson
Grandparents of John Brebner Robertson
Peter Bremner: born abt 1755, Old Milne, Westtown, Tarland Parish, Aberdeen Co, Scotland
married: 25 aug 1776, Tarland, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Elizabeth "Agnes" Gould/Gauld Born: abt 1755, Tarland and Migvie, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
4 known children of Peter and Agnes:- John, (father of John Brebner Robertson), Elizabeth, Jean and Ann
Parents of John Brebner Robertson
John Brebner: born 1776, Tarland, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
died 21 feb 1866, Tillylodge, Coull, Aberdeenshire, Scoltand
married 25 aug 1776, Tarland, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Isabell/Isobel Strachan (sometimes known as Robertson) daughter of James Strachan and Margaret Walker
born: abt 1786, Tarland, Aberdeen, Scotland
died: 21 dec 1858 , Coull, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
9 known children of John and Isabell:- Charles, James, William, Ann, Margaret, John, Elizabeth, Robert, Johanna
Why the name changed from Bremner to Brebner is unclear at this time.
further information for each of the above families may be found under Bremner or Brebner at: