Blogging from A to Z

Blogging from A to Z – V is for Valencia Creek

James Smith
James Smith. Photo provided by his great granddaughter Jennie Bradley

James Smith and Dora Mansfield lived at “Avon View”, Valencia Creek for many years. I believe that the Mr J Smith in the following two articles, both titled “Fire at Valencia Creek”, is James Smith.

Fire at Valencia Creek
FIRE AT VALENCIA CREEK. (1920, June 10). The Maffra Spectator (Vic. : 1882 – 1920), , p. 3. Retrieved April 26, 2016, from

About 7 on Monday evening a fre broke out in one of the bedrooms of Mr J. Smith’s home, at Valencia Creek, and the five-roomed dwelling house was totally destroyed, with all furniture. With the exception of Mr Smith, senr., the family were at home, but they are at a loss to account for the outbreak. The house was insured in the New Zealand Coy., but the amount will not cover the loss incurred.

Fire at Valencia Creek
FIRE AT VALENCIA CREEK. (1920, June 14). Gippsland Times (Vic. : 1861 – 1954), , p. 3. Retrieved April 26, 2016, from

Valencia Creek residents were startled on Monday evening last by the shrill cries of “Fire!” and a glare was quickly seen on the hill on which Mr. J. Smith’s home is situated, and in a short space of time bands of willing helpers were quickly on the spot; but it was seen that the main portion of the homestead was doomed, and strenuous efforts were made to save the rooms at the rear of the house, and this was accomplished, although the rooms were badly damaged. Mr. Smith’s family were heavy losers, there being only a trifling insurance with the National Mutual Insurance Co. The fire demolishing the place so rapidly, prevented any articles from being rescued.

The following article is about the marriage of James and Dora’s daughter Rachel.

Orange blossoms
ORANGE BLOSSOMS. (1901, July 26).Traralgon Record (Traralgon, Vic. : 1886 – 1932) , , p. 3 (MORNING.). Retrieved April 26, 2016, from

A very pretty and attractive wedding was celebrated last Wednesday, 17th inst., at “Avon View,” Valencia Creek, when Miss Rachel Smith, youngest daughter of Mr and Mrs James Smith, and niece of Mr and Mrs John Farmer, Glengarry, was united in wedlock to Mr Frank Coombs, of Mangalore.
The ceremony was performed by a very old friend of the bride, the Rev. Mr. Roberts, of Maffra. The bride, who was given away by her father, wore a dress of grey voile, beautifully made, the bodice being tucked and trimmed with white figured silk and lace, the skirt which was also tucked having a full court train. The bride also wore a beautiful wreath and veil, the latter being caught up with sprays of orange blossoms, and carried a handsome bouquet of lilies of the valley, gift of the bridegroom, who also was the donor of a lovely gold broach, set with pearls and diamonds, and gold cable bangle. Miss Mary Smith was the only bridesmaid, and wore a tucked dress of fawn glaze cashmere, with figured satin trimming, and was the recipient of a diamond brooch, also the gift of the bridegroom. The bridegroom was supported by Mr John Barrows, of Melbourne, who acted as best man. After the ceremony the guests sat down to a sumptuous repast. A number of toasts were duly honored, among which were the bride and bridegroom, the bridesmaid, and the parents of the contracting parties. After this a move was made to the station. The travelling dress was brown cloth, lemon satin trimmings and bolero, brown toque to match. The newly wedded couple left by the afternoon train en route for Ballarat, where they intend spending their honeymoon. The presents were both numerous and costly.

Although most of the birth, death and marriage events for the family didn’t actually take place in Valencia Creek itself, there was one death in the family that did occur in Valencia Creek.  James and Dora’s son William had a daughter, Mary Isobel Smith.  She married Charles Ian Cameron about 1940.  Charles Ian Cameron died on 1 October 1961 at Valencia Creek.