WINIFRED HARRIET HOLLAND (nee FILMER)
Born in Queenstown on 8 - 12 - 1899
My father, John William Filmer, died in June 1899 of typhoid fever which he, his brother-in-law and a cousin, Herbert Filmer, had contracted after drinking water from a horse trough in Cathcart at an auction sale. My father was the auctioneer at the time. In nursing my father my mother, Martha Harriet Filmer, contracted the disease, which. remained dormant until my birth, which resulted in both my mother and I having typhoid fever. The doctors at that time were all rather amazed that I ever survived and declared my mother should have miscarried. My only sister, Hilda, who was 17 at the time, nursed mother and I for just on two years.
Joe Davies came to Newstead as a young man to work for my father who had fallen off a horse and broken his leg. After father died Joe continued running the farm for Mother and probably also had a keen eye on the young Hilda at the time..
In 1900, I been put down to sleep in the “little room” above the pantry, when a terrific hail storm broke. With stones as large as hens eggs which broke all the windows on one side of the house and ripped off the roof. I was rescued by my old nurse maid, Marta, soaking wet but otherwise unharmd in spite of being covered in a blanket of hail stones. Old Uncle Bob Miles, who was living at Hazeldene came over in his cart to see if we had all survived the storm.
The second time Marta had to rescue me from the same “little room” was when my brothers Ted and Fritz were making and smoking paper cigarettes in the lobby under the staircase - typical of young boys at the time! They heard Hilda coming so they threw down their cigarettes and ran out setting the rest of the papers alight which then set the staircase alight. Marta rushed up those hot stairs to my rescue before the fire was doused and eventually extinguished without too much damage being done.
Hilda, Ted and Fritz attended the Hilton school until it closed. I was two years old when mother decided to buy a property in Queenstown to allow the older children easier access to the school. At this stage Joe Davies really took the bull by the horns and he and Hilda Filmer were married and they continued to live and run Newstead while the rest of the family lived in Queenstown.
During my father and Joe Davies time at Newstead they grew wheat, Planted in the autumn, fed green to the ewes, then left to mature and reaped in December. Alf Baker would then come with his thrashing machine - the straw being stacked for stock feed during the winter months and the corn was taken to the McKennens Flour Mills in Queenstown.
It was during Ted and Fritz’s time together at Newstead that wheat was discontinued and lucerne planted.
Ted and Joe made the big dam across from the huts to catch the water coming from springs around the big krans. The water was led to the fruit gardens and the luzerne lands beyond.
The building near the sheep dip was a flour mill at one time. The grindstones were afterwards used for braying riems.
As a toddler under the age of two years I was living on the home farm, Newstead - The old African girl, Martie, who cared for me as my Mother was not fit enough to do so, was doing the cooking and housework as the usual cook was off sick. Old Martie went down the yard to the old Dutch Oven and scraped the red hot coals out to put the bread in to bake. She did not realise that I had followed her and ran after her onto the heap of coals and stood screaming hell, she ran back and picked me up. This was the third time that she had rescued me. My feet were very badly burned, my shoes were burned fast to my feet - my sister, Hilda, then seventeen took me and soaked my feet in a basin of raw Linseed Oil and then wrapped them in cloths soaked in the Oil
For almost two years I was not able to walk - my Mother was then still suffering from the after effects of typhoid and we both learned to walk together.
Except that my feet are sensitive when I walk barefoot I have had no trouble with my feet - there is very little scaring and no deformities.
When brother Ted completed his wagon building apprenticeship with Treeweek & Carder he went to Newstead to his sister Hilda and Joe to learn farming. After brother Fritz completed his blacksmith apprenticeship he joined brother Ted on Newstead and Joe and Hilda bought and moved onto their own farm Weldon. Ted and Fritz continued farming together at Newstead until Fritz married Florence Robinson, after which Ted moved to the farm Stonedale which was our fathers inheritance from his family in place of his third share of the old family farm Rookwood. He married Beatrice McLellan.
Brother Arthur, after turning 21 years, went to Newstead to learn farming from his older brother Fritz. Arthur then bought and moved to Glen Thorn when he married Hilda Price. Brother Frank worked at Central Supply Stores in Queenstown until he left and joined the Queenstown Eastern Rifles in 1914 and was first sent to German South West Africa then to France where he paid the supreme sacrifice.
Brother Cecil after leaving school worked at Morum Produce Store and then joined the Fourth Light Horse and was sent to German East Africa. On his return he moved in with his brothers who taught him farming.
During the 1918 flu epidemic mother moved back to Newstead where she virtually turned the house into a nursing home for all her sick family. I remained in Queenstovn, working for the Red Cross and keeping the home fires burning.
In 1923 on 5th June, I married John Edward (Teddie) Holland and moved to the farm Eversley in the Komga District. Soon after I married disaster struck the family at Newstead when my brother Fritz took the life of his wife “Tossie” and little daughter Thelma before taking his own life when it was discovered kitchen maid had leprosy. Their son Jack at the time was with Hilda and Joe at Weldon. After this tragedy Ted and his wife “Bea” moved back to the family home on Newstead where they farmed successfully and brought up their five children. Their son George Filmer took over Newstead after the death of him father, Ted.