Horsham Historical Society celebrates 150th anniversary of Lost In The Bush

TOUR: Western Victorian Association of Historical Societies secretary Helen Curkpatrick and Wimmera Association of Genealogy president Ken Flack at the grave of Jane Cooper-Turnball, also known as Jane Duff, at Horsham cemetery, where a tour was held  on Sunday. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

TOUR: Western Victorian Association of Historical Societies secretary Helen Curkpatrick and Wimmera Association of Genealogy president Ken Flack at the grave of Jane Cooper-Turnball, also known as Jane Duff, at Horsham cemetery, where a tour was held on Sunday. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

HORSHAM Historical Society celebrated the Lost in the Bush 150th anniversary with an exhibition and cemetery tour at the weekend.

The exhibition, on Saturday and Tuesday, included Jane's rocking chair, photos of the three children and genealogy research.

Photos: Lost in the Bush celebrations

The society's Jacquelyn O'Connor said there was a section on each of the children and information about their life.

"We had a section on Isaac Copper - his descendants gave us photos for the display," she said.

"Not many people have seen his photo.

"With Frances Duff, or Frank, we didn't have any photos of him but we had an extract from the paper about his death."

Ms O'Connor said there were also newspaper clippings, a display of broom brushes and native flowers.

She said about 45 people went through the exhibition on Saturday.

On Sunday, the society ran a cemetery tour.

Ms O'Connor said Ken Flack from the Wimmera Association on Genealogy hosted the tour.

"About 25 people came along and Ken spoke all about the family and how they were linked," he said.

"There were handout charts so people could understand the family tree and also a map to where all the graves are.

"A lot of graves are still unmarked, so the tour focused around Jane's grave at Horsham."

Ms O'Connor said people had the opportunity to lay flowers on the graves.

She said the society had researched the story since the committee formed in December.

"It's been ongoing research because the descendant information took a long time to study," she said.

Ms O'Connor said the society was trying to change the way people referred to the Lost in the Bush Story because Jane's last name was not Duff.

Jane and Isaac's surname was Cooper and Frank's surname was Duff.

"We would like people to refer to Jane as Jane Turnbull nee Cooper or Jane Cooper-Turnbull, also known as Jane Duff," she said.

She said the society and descendants of Isaac preferred the children were known as Copper-Duff, rather than just Duff.

The Horsham Historical Society is open each Tuesday and Wednesday from 1.30pm to 4.30pm.

Ms O'Connor said she hoped more descendants would come forward with items that could be included in the exhibition.

"People who weren't able to attend the open exhibition can also pop in any time we are open," she said.

"We want to keep the story alive and keep it as accurate as possible."

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