Jane Williamson Lawson (1820-1886) was the eldest daughter of Gavin Lawson and Margaret Williamson of Ayrshire Scotland. At the age of 21 Jane married Master Slater and Glazier James Ferguson (1818-1894) on the 13th June 1841 in St Quivox, Ayrshire, Scotland.
Between 1842 and 1852 James and Jane had five children; Margaret (mentally disabled from birth) born 1842, Janet Kay 1844, Jane Williamson 1846, Marion 1948, James 1851 (died as an infant) and Antonia Wallace in 1852.
On the 12th December 1852, her husband James and his younger brother David departed Greenock, Scotland, aboard the “Tamerlane” bound for Melbourne, Australia. A very patient Jane would wait in the “old country” for three years with the children whilst James established the business in Melbourne with his business partner James Urie.
In November 1855 Jane and the five girls arrived in Port Melbourne aboard the “Emma”. A further three children were born in Melbourne; Barbara in 1856, Sarah Campbell in 1859 and James Jnr in 1861.
In 1886 James had his two storey gothic design house built in Leonard street Parkville by local architect Harry Lording, but Jane would never step foot in.
Jane died on the 17th of April 1886 and James would eventually move into the Parkville mansion as a widower, accompanied by his bachelor son James Jnr, and eldest mentally disabled daughter, Margaret.
Photos from the family history collection.
The Argus, Melbourne, Monday 19th April 1886, page 1.
“FERGUSON – On the 17th inst, at her residence, 24 Little Curzon-street, Hotham, Jane, the dearly beloved wife of Mr. James Ferguson, aged 66 years”.
“THE Friends of Mr. JAMES FERGUSON, of Ferguson and Urie, are respectfully invited to follow the remains of his late beloved wife, Jane, to the place of interment in the Melbourne General Cemetery. The funeral will leave his residence, 24 Curzon street, Hotham, at half-past 4 o’clock, THIS DAY. ALFRED ALLISON, undertaker, 40 Victoria-street west, Melbourne”.