Important photo #1: Hapgood family Kin Kin 1915

This photo has been around my parents house in pride of place forever. Its a photo of my fathers grandfather, William Charles Hapgood born 25 July 1872 in Milton NSW (near Ulladulla) with his wife, Clara Rose Newton born 5th July 1877 who was also born in Milton/Ulladulla, and 7 of their 8 children. This photo was taken around 1915 in Kin Kin, Queensland.

Hapgood family Kin Kin 1915
The Hapgood family from Kin Kin, Queensland, c1915
Back row: Jeffery Gordon b1899 and his mother Clara Rose (Newton) b1877
Middle row: Mona b1905 and her father William Charles b1872 and Iris Jane b1902
Front Row: Clarice Phyllis b1900, Clara Gwen (seated) b1910, Stella Annie (on lap of her father) b1911 and Ina Rose b1907.
Not in photo: Olga Hapgood (born later in 1918)
  • Back row: Jeffery Gordon b1899 and his mother Clara Rose (Newton) b1877
  • Middle row: Mona b1905 and her father William Charles b1872 and Iris Jane b1902
  • Front row: Clarice Phyllis b1900, Clara Gwen (seated) b1910, Stella Annie (on lap of her father) b1911 and Ina Rose b1907. Not in photo: Olga Hapgood (b1918)

As a kid I loved this photo, because of the extraordinary detail of the whole family, the sheer size of the Hapgood family, showing their plain but stylish clothes, and the fact the way the photo was discussed “your grandfather and great grandparents and all the great aunts”. It took pride of place in the lounge room. I loved this photo so much that when I got married in 1999, my sister Linda had it copied and gave it to me in a fabulous rustic wooden frame, and it has been on display somewhere in our house ever since.

Later in life, what particularly blew me away was the thought that this photo seemed to me (in my 20s) to be so old, and yet I had met many of these great aunts in person nearly 100 years later – particularly Great Aunt Stella Hapgood, who lived up the road in Caloundra and we saw her a couple of times a year. Later on I found out the photo was taken about 1915, so that made it only about 75 years later, but still!

Imagine starting out your life on a farm, riding horses to school and your Dad clearning the land, and towards the end of your life there are cars and mobile phones and a man has landed on the moon.

I used to look at this photo and try to imagine what it would be like to see so much change in a single lifetime.

In retrospect, this is one of three Hapgood family photos that were famous in my family, and that helped keep me interested in family history – even just a little bit as a teenager. This blog is to compile some of the family stories I heard, plus others that I have learned since, and it all started with this photo of “The Hapgood family from Kin Kin”

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