52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks

52 Ancestors #47 Whimpey brothers

Amy Johnson Crow introduced the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge on her No Story Too Small blog in 2014. This year she continued the challenge, but also added a weekly theme.  This week the topic is Sporting. Do you have a relative who was involved in sports?

My grandfather John Ernest Whimpey was the fifth child in a family of 12 children, born between 1873 and 1897.  There were 9 sons and 3 daughters. The family lived first at Newbridge and later at Tarnagulla.  There is a website about the history of Tarnagulla at http://home.vicnet.net.au/~tarnagul/.  This This website includes a photo of the Tarnagulla  Football Team in 1915 – http://www.tarnagulla.org/photogallery/gallery3/index.php/School-and-social-Groups/groups/Tarnagulla_Football_Team_1915.  This photo included the 5 youngest of the Whimpey brothers, including my grandfather.

Bert Whimpey – Herbert Whimpey was the youngest.  He was born in 1897.
Jack Whimpey – my grandfather John Ernest Whimpey, was born in 1884. He was the eldest of the 5.
Claude Whimpey – William Claude Whimpey was born in 1895
Roy Whimpey – Albert Roy Whimpey was born in 1892
Arthur Whimpey – Arthur Edgar Whimpey was born in 1896

This could very well be the last photo of the 5 brothers together, as the brothers enlisted in the army over the next couple of years.

Bert enlisted on 2 March 1917
Jack enlisted on 16 January 1918
Claude enlisted on 21 July 1916.  He was killed in action on 3 May 1917.
Roy enlisted on 20 January 1916.
Arthur enlisted on 23 January 1916.

After the war, the four surviving brothers (as well as their sisters and older brothers) ended up moving to Melbourne  Jack, Roy and Arthur settled in Heidelberg, while Bert went to Port Melbourne.  My grandfather died in 1960, Roy and Arthur both died in 1965. and Bert died in 1974.

To find out a little more about their footballing careers, I did a search on Trove.

The Inglewood Advertiser 19 May 1914 had an article about the Tarnagulla v Rheola match (http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article121038245 – Inglewood Advertiser Tuesday 19 May 1914 page 2).  Roy Whimpey is mentioned as one of the best men.

The Inglewood Advertiser 4 June 1915 has another article (http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article121044940), which shows that Bert Whimpey scored the only goal for Tarnagulla.  He was also named as one of the best players.

The following article from the Inglewood Advertiser Friday 28 August 1914 has more details about the match between Tarnagulla and Inglewood, which mentions 3 of the brothers

Tarnagulla v Inglewood
SPORTING. FOOTBALL. (1914, August 28). Inglewood Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 – 1918), p. 3. Retrieved November 24, 2015, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article121038881


The question of supremacy between the above Wednesday teams was definitely decided on Wednesday. Previously, of six matches played, each had won three, consequently it was decided that a final be played on the Arnold ground, as being neutral territory. Both sides were well represented, Tarnagulla having the assistance of several senior men, while the Inglewood team included F. Metelmann, W. Arnold and W. Weir, of Arnold, and A. Leitch, of Powlett.  Tarnagulla won in convincing fashion, their supremacy lying in their ruck play, in which Harding was unapproachable.

On a late start being made Harding carried forward.  Coffey and McCamish defended, but R. Whimpey and Kilgour returned and J. Sheldon forwarded. A crush about goal followed, out of which Woodall snapped a sixer. A free to Thomas and a dash down by McCamish brought Inglewood into evidence, but Kilgour and Burchall returned to goal.  Weir saved, and after a hard struggle passes by McCamish and Coffey carried forward, Bradley opening Inglewood’s account with a single. Jenkins and Harding defended, but Metelmann, Rolfe and Austin forwarded and Bradley had another try, this time kicking out. Two frees to Kilgour were followed by R. Whimpey and Ousley sending the length of the ground, but Metelmann returned and Thomas, Leitch and Bradley forwarded. Jenkins and Seely were successful in defence, but Coffey and Austin returned. A try by Bradley was marked by Jenkins, the bell ringing with Inglewood pressing. Scores: –

Tarnagulla, 1 goal
Inglewood, 1 behind.

Tarnagulla commenced the second quarter with a strong attack, for which Ousley was responsible. Burchall had an angle short, but a pass in was marked by Metelmann. Tarnagulla pressed, a superior centre-line enabling them to keep play in their opponents’ territory. An effective defence was offered by Inglewood – Coffey, Austin, Leitch and Metelmann figuring chiefly-until R. Whimpey found the small opening from a free at a sharp angle. Harding returned from the kick-off, and R. Whimpey ran in with a similar result. A free to Bastow relieved further pressure, but J. Sheldon placed Woodall in possession within range. The try went wide, but was a good mark by B. Whimpey close in was followed by this player punting second goal. R. Whimpey sent down from the bounce and Woodall had another opening, but a faulty pass lost the chance and Arnold and Robert relieved. Tarnagulla attacked vigorously, but the interval was reached without further score:-

Tarnagulla, 2 goals 2 behinds
Inglewood, 1 behind

Harding carried forward single-handed on the start of the third quarter, but a free to Bastow checked the advance. J. Whimpey and Burchall sent to goal, but Austin prevented a score. Crowded and willing play followed, J. Whimpey then passing to Ousley. His try went across but Woodall centred and a minor was rushed. Harding marked the kick-off and forwarded to Woodall, but this player’s try went wide, as did an effort directly after by Ousley, who received from Burchall. A snap by Rivett was well marked by Bastow, and another shot by Harding was marked by Freeman at the posts. A free to Rivett finally ended the attack, a single resulting. Inglewood then worked down for the first time for the quarter, and Roberts and Leitch forwarded. Bradley sent to the scoring line, and a heavy rush forced through for a point. Coffey added a second from a free on the boundary, and one or two nice chances were lost through players running instead of kicking. Scores: –

Tarnagulla, 2 goals 4 behinds
Inglewood, 3 behinds

The last quarter was in Tarnagulla’s favor, and the issue was never in doubt. Kilgour and Oxley forwarded on the start, but a fine mark by McCamish saved. R. Whimpey on Harding returned, and Burchall to Ousley, to R. Whimpey sent to the scoring line. McCamish and Coffey sent out, but on the throw-in Harding scored a minor with a left foot snap, the ball grazing the inside of a goal post. Crowded play followed, with the umpire’s decisions constantly being challenged, Tarnagulla keeping up their attack. A snap by Harding from the ruck gained a minor score – the last for the match. Just on time Inglewood rallied, but with practically all on the ground crowded on the ball no scoring was possible, and the game ended –

Tarnagulla, 2 goals 6 behinds
Inglewood, 3 behinds

For the winners, Harding carried off the honors of the day, playing a very fine game. Ousley, Kilgour, Burchall, R. Whimpey, Jenkins, J. and F. Sheldon, Woodall and J. Whimpey gave him a solid backing.  For Inglewood Coffey, McCamish, Bastow, Metelmann, Leitch and Bradley were well assisted by Austin, Roberts, Freeman and others. W. Holland kindly gave his services as umpire, but was given a decidedly “rough passage”.

There were a number of other results that came up in my search, but I have only listed the first few results.

The Whimpey family weren’t the only family involved in Australian Rules Football.  My great uncle, Cecil Rupert Harley was part of the Kilcunda Football Club Premiership team in 1929, as shown in the photo below. Cecil is the 2nd from the right in the second row from the back, while my great grandfather, Alexander Alexander Harley, is in the centre of the back row (the one with the while beard).  My great grandfather was president of the club that year.

2003-01-04 Kilcunda Football Club