Georgiana Mc Crae - Legacy of The Matriarch At Arundel Cottage and Cape Schanck

Legacy of The Matriarch At Arundel Cottage and Cape Schanck

Georgiana then lived with George and Maggie, the only unmarried daughter. They were sociable and came to know great writers like Henry Kendall and Marcus Clarke and Adam Lindsay Gordon while still maintaining their privileged position in the Government House circle. In 1868 they moved to Arundel Cottage in Richmond, and Georgiana travelled more frequently within Victoria than she had been able to do in the past, particularly in Cape Schanck.

At the homestead of Barragunda she painted the Pulpit Rock. While her two daughters gave her trouble, she enjoyed a happy mother-daughter relationship with Edith Anderson. Andrew McCrae died on 24 July 1874, leaving the seventy-year-old Georgiana free to take on the role of matriarch, despite her increasing dependence on her children.

In her last years, beginning in 1886, she lived with her daughter and grandchildren, but occasionally visited and painted in Cape Schanck. She wrote frequently to Edith's daughter, and the letters give insight into her old age, as do the letters she wrote to friends in Scotland and her half-sister Susan Sordett. She lived to see Melbourne's half-century and the centenary of white settlement in Australia in 1888. She made her will on 6 May 1890 with a balance of £149 and her paintings and jewellery, and died on the 24 May 1890 in the presence of almost all her family who kept her possessions and records.

Her legacy includes the journals her grandson published in 1934, and her great-grandson George Gordon McCrae buying back the Arthur's Seat homestead in 1961. In 1969 after his death it went to the National Trust from his son Andrew.

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