“Remember me in the family tree, my name, my days, my strife; then I’ll ride upon the wings of time And live an endless life.” ~ Linda Goetsch.
Continuing with my recent theme of visiting old houses that hold some significance to me, I felt compelled to include a historic family homestead, situated just outside of Murwillumbah on the far northern New South Wales coast. This home is named “Lisnagar”.
To this day I can still remember the first time I spotted “Lisnagar” whilst driving past the home in the back seat of my parent’s station wagon. We had only just moved to Murwillumbah, having relocated from the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney. I was thirteen years old and this beautiful old home immediately conjured up images in my young, impressionable minds-eye of women wearing lovely long white dresses, and bonnets with big ribbon ties under their chins.
My interest with “Lisnagar” was resurrected at the age of nineteen, when I met the man who was to become my husband. This beautiful old home had been built by his great-grandfather, Edward Twohill.
“Lisnagar” was built in the early 1900’s by Edward and his wife Ellen and is presently owned by Terry Twohill, a grandson of Edward and Ellen’s.
The home has remained in the Twohill family throughout all the years of its existence, with two of Ellen and Edwards unmarried children, Emma and Kevin, being the last two occupants.
The eldest child of Edward and Ellen was Esther, my husband’s grandmother. Esther lived to the ripe old age of ninety years. (Esther’s eldest son just celebrated his 99th birthday!) Esther passed away in 1983 and during the six years that I knew her, barely a weekend went by that we didn’t spend some time with Gran and her best friend, a tiny female chihuahua named “Kelly”.
The Twohill family are an eccentric clan, to say the least! Dear old Gran, bless her soul, was certainly not the stereotypical warm and fuzzy grandmother! She remained opinionated and fiery by nature, right through to the day she died.
“Lisnagar” is an extremely beautiful homestead, with wrought iron lace work adorning all the verandas, as was the style of architecture during the Victorian era. I had the opportunity of photographing the detailed lace work close up recently when visiting the home with my husband and daughters during a family reunion.
When I decided to add my photos of “Lisnagar” here today, I searched Google to see if I could find any links to websites to share, only to find some rather wishy-washy links available. So what I will offer is my story, my photos and my memories of the fiery daughter of Edward and Ellen, whom I was fortunate enough to know.
Gran spoke very fondly of her old family home. She had married in 1912, the same year the Titanic sank, the reception of the wedding being held at “Lisnagar”.
Gran and her female siblings were very artistic, with the walls within “Lisnagar” holding a number of old drawings and paintings done by the girls. Gran had been a very talented artist in her younger day, although her artistic ambitions had ended with the birth of the first of her twelve children.
The grounds of “Lisnagar” are another story within themselves, which I will continue with tomorrow….