Grace (Gracie) Brown1899-1939

Grace (Gracie) Brown 1899-1939

Grace (Gracie) Brown

Born 3 November 1899   –   Married 1 December 1920   –   JAMES ANDREW MURPHY   Born 16 August 1896


Eva June (known as June) was the second daughter of Grace and James. June was born on 18 April 1924.

On 28 January 1939, Grace died giving birth to their 7th child, who also died.

June met Eric James Sinclair at the age of 14, 6 months before her mother died. Eric was 4 years older.

June and Eric dated regularly even though it was difficult at times due to June’s living arrangements and her work commitments.
On the 4th April 1942 June and Eric were married, 2 weeks before her 18th birthday.
Eric had worked as a postman, and then joined the army. He was not able to go overseas due to an eye problem and finished in the postal division much to his dismay. He later joined the Commonwealth Public Service in the Immigration Department where he stayed until he died on the 15th July 1978, two weeks before his 58th birthday.

June and Eric had three children, Margaret, Eric (Ric) and Stephen.
On 5th June 1959 June, Eric and family departed for a three-year posting to Rome, Italy, with the Immigration Department attached to the Australian Embassy. He was a selection Office, interviewing migrants wishing to come to Australia. After two and a half years Eric was asked to go and open an office in Malta, where he worked in conjunction with Maltese Emigration, once again selecting migrants wanting to come to Australia. Margaret was employed as his secretary during this time.

In January 1963, after being away for three and a half years, the family returned to Perth. Seven years later June and Eric took another posting overseas, this time in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, for 2 years.

After Eric retired, due to illness, they went for a trip overseas to Scotland, Holland and to Seaside, Oregon to see June’s older sister Toni and her husband Bob. After 4 days, Eric was taken to hospital and died two weeks later from Viral Hepatitis.
June was only 52, but she never remarried and lived in Perth till she passed away just her 90th birthday. She never got over losing Eric but luckily had her family and her sisters and brother around her.

Murphy Connection with the Brown Family by  AJ “Jim” Murphy

Our connection with the Brown Family is through our mother, Grace Brown, who married our father James Andrew Murphy in Quairading, WA on the 1° of November, 1920. Grace was the sixth child born to William Brown and Grace McPhail Loudon on the 3r^ November, 1899, Newarthill, Scotland. William and Grace Brown arrived in Fremantle from Scotland on the Ormuz with their nine children on the 31 December, 1908, a tenth child was born later in Australia on 6ᵗh March, 1911. The family consisted of six boys and four girls viz: Mary, Jack, Annie, George, Bill, Grace, Jim, Archie, Andrew and Margaret ( Auntie Rita).

James Andrew Murphy and Grace Brown had seven children, six girls and one boy as follows:

Grace Irene Antionette Murphy — b. 3rd May 1921

Eva June Murphy — b. 18th April 1924

Margaret Winifred Murphy — b. 4ᵗh July 1926

Patricia Mary Murphy — b. 21 March 1929

Archibald James Murphy — b. 4ᵗh September 1931

Olive Jean Murphy — b. 8t February 1934

Doris May Murphy — b. 28* January 1939— died at birth.

Our mother Grace Murphy died in childbirth 28″ January 1939. Doris May Murphy died also and was buried in Karrakatta in the same grave as our mother Grace Murphy.

Our father James Andrew, preferred name Jim, joined the Royal Australian Navy from Kookynie, WA on 19” June, 1912 as a 15 year old and served in the navy until 16th June, 1915 when he jumped ship (HMAS Protector) in Adelaide and enlisted in the A.I.F on the 21° June, 1915 under an assumed name, James Arthur Rowe. His name was changed back to his correct name James Andrew Murphy on the 9″ September, 1916. He was discharged from the Australian Imperial Force after his return to Australia on the 3rd October, 1919. He received no penalty for jumping ship in 1915 to join the army .

I do not know the sequence of events between 1919 and the marriage of James Andrew Murphy and Grace Brown in 1920 — what took him to Quairading. I understand that at one stage he had a property under the Soldiers Settlement Scheme, I presume that was after he married Grace. Why were they in Perth for the birth of both Toni in 1921 and June in 1924 — were they living there during those early years? They were living back in the wheatbelt area in 1926 because Maggie (Margaret) was born in Kununoppin on 4th July 1926. After moving off the Soldiers Settlement Farm I understand that he was wheat lumping the rest of the time they were in the Quairading District. My sister Pat and I were both born in Quairading — sister Olive was born in Perth. I was named after Uncle Archie Brown and my father James Andrew Murphy.

I have a 1929 photo of Quairading FC which has our dad, Uncle Archie Brown, Andrew Loudon and George Loudon in it. This photo was provided to me by John Kieran, whose father was also in the 1929 team. I also have another one, 1934, with Uncle Archie (Capt) in — there is another photo, not too clear with our dad in, but has no date. This was also provided by John Kieran on loan from Mrs Argus.

I know that we must have moved to Perth sometime between my birthday 4ᵗh September, 1931 and my second birthday in 1933, because I won a Popular Boy’s Competition at Mount Lawley when I was 2 years old. My older sisters told me that we moved around a bit in those years before WW11 – I was told that we were living in Subiaco when Olive was born. My first memories of where we lived in Perth were before I started school and we lived at No. 1 Marlborough Street across the road from in those days the Railway Shunting Yards, today it is the Public Transport Centre — I see on my UBD it is shown as being right on the inside boundary of Perth but I am sure that before the War when we lived there it was East Perth.

We then moved from Marlborough Street to No. 9 Albert Street, Mosman Park about the end of 1937 or early 1938 because I started school at Mosman Park Primary, which just around the corner from Albert Street in Victoria Street. After a few months at No.9, we moved down to No. 1 Albert Street. In those days Albert Street was a “No Through” Street. We were living at No. 1 Albert Street when our mum died in childbirth on 28 January, 1939— our little sister, Doris May, died with her and both buried in the same grave at Karrakatta.

After our mother died we continued to live at No 1 Albert Street. Our Grandmother Murphy, aged 68 years old, came to live with us to care for the family and not long after Uncle Archie came to live with us too — I believe that it was to help support the family as dad was a labourer with the Water Supply and at that time I am pretty sure there were only five of us at home ranging in age from Olive (5 years) up to June (15 years) — I think Toni had left home as she would have been 18 years old and I don’t remember her being around much after mum died. Apparently it got too much for Grandma Murphy to look after us all and a decision was made for Margaret, Pat, Olive and myself to be put into Parkerville Children’s Home.

War was declared on 3’d September, 1939, I turned 8 years old on the 4th September and the three girls moved into Parkerville on that day — I actually went to live with my Auntie Rene and Uncle Wally at Bullsbrook , but Grandma Murphy said that we were not to be split up so on the gth September I was moved into Parkerville as well. Parkerville consisted of a number of cottages each one having about twenty or so kids and run by a house mother. There was one cottage called Babyland for infants up to about 3 years old, an all girls cottage, an all boys cottage and two cottages with mixed boys and girls. Pat and Olive went into the all girls cottage, I moved into the same cottage were Margaret was.

Margaret and another girl ran away from the Home when she was about 15 years old, so Pat, Olive and I were moved into the same cottage which contained a lot of family members and there we stayed until early December, 1943, when our dad removed us from the Home. Olive went to live with June who had married Eric Sinclair in 1942, Pat went to live with a friend of dad’s and got a job at the Apothecary Chemist – I went to live with my Auntie and Uncle at Bullsbrook so that I could attend High School at Midland Junction Central School. After that our family was to live most of our lives as separate entities getting together on various occasions.

After marrying George Masters in 1940 up around Wiluna, George went overseas and then Toni moved to Melbourne. I know Margaret moved over to Melbourne to live with Toni for a while, not sure for how long. It was during this time that Toni met her next husband to be, Colonel Elwood McSherry. After dad got out of the army in 1943, he was manpowered in a job at Maylands aerodrome, converting Avro Anson bombers into freight planes until the war finished. During this time he also clerked for a bookmaker at the races on a Saturday. The bookmaker used to take dad with him up to Kalgoorlie for the Annual Round and being fond of dancing, dad used to go to the dances on a Wednesday and Saturday nights, where he met Lilian Boyle, a widow whose husband had been killed up in the Islands fighting the Japs.When dad went up for the Kalgoorlie Round in August, 1946 he and Lilian got married and dad stayed up there. Our stepmother had three children Arthur, Lorna and Alan — I don’t know their birth dates but Arthur was about Margaret’s age, Lorna was between Pat and myself, whilst Alan was a year younger than me.

One weekend before dad moved to Kalgoorlie I was staying with him out West Perth way, we were walking along the street towards the city when we bumped into Uncle Archie and Auntie Eileen with Mai being a baby in the pram, that was the first time I had met Uncle Archie since he had gone to war— I wasn’t to see him again for a number of years. In either late 1943 or early 1944 I received a card from Uncle Archie whilst he was a POW — it was dated 16” August, 1943 and he was in Stalag VIIIB — it is one of my most treasured possessions to this day.

When I finished Year 9 at Midland Central School I moved to Kalgoorlie to live with my new family. Olive was living there by then. Margaret and Pat had moved up to Kalgoorlie also to work, Margaret was working at the Palace Hotel and Pat and our stepsister Lorna were both working at the Railway Hotel. Not sure how long Margaret was in Kalgoorlie before she moved back to Perth and got a job at the Ocean Beach Hotel in Cottesloe. Pat followed not long after and also got a Job at the Ocean Beach. During this time I remember Toni staying at the Ocean Beach with her son Dale prior to moving to America as a War Bride.

I remember Uncle Andy and Auntie Gath and family moving up to Kalgoorlie around about 1949/50 to live, I’m sure Yvonne would have a better idea than me — used to see a fair bit of uncle and auntie, not so much of the cousins altho’ I remember Nancy coming up to be a bridesmaid for Hazel’s wedding – guess that would have been about 1950 or so, but I’m sure Nancy would remember, caught up with them once at the Tuesday night dance.

After I got married to Marion in June 1953 and daughter Gai born in April 1954, we moved to Mount Isa, Queensland for four years and a year down in Rosebery, on West Coast of Tasmania for 12months, before returning to Kalgoorlie in September 1959. I think that Yvonne was the only one of the Brown family living in Kalgoorlie then and she was married to Norm Amesbury — I had lost touch with Yvonne at that stage although our daughter Gai and Debbie Amesbury were in the same classes at South Kalgoorlie School Primary School from Grade 1 – Grade 6.

In May 1967 we moved from Kalgoorlie to Tasmania and spent the next 31 years living in the Eastern States before returning to WA (Erskine) at the end of August 1998, by which time I had lost almost all contact with our Brown relatives with the exception of Yvonne and in the last year or so, Nancy. In fact, because I lived for 16 years in Kalgoorlie and 36 years in the Eastern States I never really got to know most of my Brown Family relatives, with the exception of Uncle Andy’s family. I don’t know how close any of my sisters were.

Addendum: Ross MacDonald writes that the “Murphy Girls” as they were collectively known were extremely close and always made sure that they were available for the monthly lunches with Rita and of course the Rita and Neil Christmas party in Elvira St, Palmyra


GRACE BROWN – born NEWARTHILL, SCOTLAND 03.11.1899 -died KEMH, 28.01.1939

JAMES ANDREW MURPHY -born GYMPIE, QUEENSLAND 16.08.1896- died Perth, WA 04.06.1975 MARRIED – QUAIRADING, WA 01.12.1920


Grace Irene Antoinette Murphy – born Perth, WA 03.05.1921 – died Arizona, USA, 29.03.2010

Eva June Murphy – born Perth WA 18.04.1924 – died Kingsley, WA 07.04.2014

Margaret Winifred Murphy – born KUNUNOPPIN, WA 04.07.1926 – died Murdoch Hospice, WA 15.12.2016

Patricia Mary Murphy – born Quairading, WA 21.03.1929- died Murdoch Hospice, WA 02.09.2004

Archibald James Murphy – born Quairading, WA 04.09.1931 – still living

Olive Jean Murphy – born SUBIACO, WA 08.02.1934 – still living

Doris May Murphy – born KEMH, WA 28.01.1939 – died KEMH, WA 28.01.1939


Married at 19 years to George J H Masters in East Murchison – divorced George Masters

Married Elwood McSherry 1946

One son – Dale James Elwood McSherry – born 13.01.1944 Moved to USA 1948 – divorced Elwood McSherry

Married Robert Nelson – no further children – Robert Nelson died 19.06.2010

Dale James Elwood McSherry

Married Rose Flores in August 1987 in Oregon USA – one child

Leilani Dawn Antoinette McSherry – born 02.05.1988 Kona, Hawaii Divorced Rose Flores June 1993 in Hawaii

Married Irene Genon 15.08.2000 Kona, Hawaii – one child Michael Robert McSherry – born 15.05.2002 Hawaii

Leilani Dawn Antoinette McSherry  Married Tyler Parent – Kona – two children

Hanalie Keikilani Lopaka Keanaaina-Parent – born 28.04.2007,

Kona Tylani Marie Antoinette Keanaaina-Parent – born 02.06.2010 Kona Divorced Tyler Parent

Partner Dustin Jose – one child – did not marry

Beretta-Lyn Marie Keakaokalani Jose – born 18.10.2013 Kona, Hawaii  Married Dylan Alcain 30.12.2017 – Hawaii – one child

Mia-Marie Llima Momilani Alcain – born 13.07.2018

June and Eric

From Dale McSherry
As you probably know, the Browns were a Scottish Jewish family. In fact, the Browns, and I’m assuming the initial core of Browns were actually the first Jews to migrate to Scotland. I’m going off track a bit with family genetics, but when I did the first DNA sampling Dr. Greenspan called me up and said this, “Dr. McSherry, I don’t normally call my clients but I want to know why you don’t know you’re Jewish?” Mum had always said she thought we were Moors as we were dark, and Uncle Alex looked like an Arab herding sheep on horseback. Greenspan connected me with genetic Jewish cousins and they told me that we are related to Arron, Moses’ brother. On the second recent DNA sampling, found out that we are also Ethiopian/Somalian – why? Apparently, our family was the Israelites that took the Ark of the Covenant to that part of that world and stayed and intermarried. Also in that sampling Danish, Flemish, Sicilian, Greek, Northern Portuguese, Brazilian, Greek, Bavarian, etc.

Mom, when she came to America and Dad, was stationed at Ft. Lee, Maryland Mom pursued an acting career, and did a University of Maryland TV drama, and was doing Lipton Tea commercials for a well-known TV personality, Arthur Godfrey, she was getting interests and dad said either be a wife/mom or actress. Not both. I was only five. We had a maid from Haiti who would steal my mom’s clothes, and a local sheriff who know our family saw her with mom’s clothes. Mom was pregnant with my sister, Dawn, but for some reason, she became ill, undiagnosed, and lost the baby. The maid was still there to take care of me and one day dad went down to the basement and found a voodoo doll with mom’s hair, etc. and pins and needle. One day, mom was getting on the public bus, with me. The bus driver told her she had to sit in the back with the other coloreds, he thought mom was black and my nanny. Once her heard her speak he apologized.

When we came to Australia back in the 1950s, on a tramp passenger steamer, HMS City of Poona, can still find photos of it online, it was the last voyage for this ship as it had been built around the same time as the Titanic and it was going to end up on a beach in India after this trip. We got to make great friends with the third mate, Neal, Englishman, and when we got to Fremantle, mom didn’t tell anyone she was coming, Uncle Alex was at the pier, Mom was surprised so was he as he was there to see Neal, his Nephew who was married to his Scottish niece. Small world. My Dad during the war while traveling on a troopship to Australia was a very good poker player and we lived off his poker earnings while we lived in Oz. I was in third grade in Australia, and the polio epidemic struck, Schools were closed down. I was staying at the Sinclairs with Mom, and the doctor came (they made house calls in those days) and told Mom I had polio – I would watch the ambulances go up and down the streets picking up kids from their homes. All they had then were iron lungs for breathing, and not enough of those. Mom put me on a sheep station after that. I saw the Queen and her husband come to Western Australia and cried when I saw them in a parade. They were absolutely beautiful. I never got taller, while all my male cousins are close to six feet on both sides of the family. I have big feet and hands, but I suspect polio stunted my growth.

Dad was stationed in Taiwan, and mom and I joined him later. It was under a dictatorship, Chiang Kai-shek. and parents would entertain army generals from all parts of the world. Mom told me one evening they were entertaining Turkish generals and when they found out that she was Australian started in on her about Gallipoli, Dad had to intervene. Mom told me that they lost the family farm during the Depression, and the only thing the bank gave them were the clothes and sewing machine. They had to walk to Perth. Grandfather Jim, took jobs to take care of the family, one job was on an earthen dam, and Grandmother Grace washed the workers’ clothes. One evening, as the sun was setting, Grandma got on top of the dam, and started to sing one of those beautiful Scottish songs, like Great Uncle Alex would do, and the men stopped and started to cry. Anyway, that’s it for now.

Happy New Year! Dale