Select Page

Thomas Benjamin MARTIN

B: 19th Apr 1900 D: 27th Apr 1973

Born: 19th April 1900 in Birdsville, Queensland.  However, his birth registration states he was named Thomas Angus Martin.

Married: Thomas married Evelyn Mabel Reid on 19th September 1929 in Patterson’s Hall at Farina in South Australia.

Died: 27th April 1973 in the Jamestown Hospital from cancer of the oesophagus and is buried in the Jamestown Cemetery.

Thomas lived in Farina from 1911 to 1938.

The historical information and photographs for the Martin family was generously provided by her family. The Farina Restoration Group greatly appreciates this information and gladly publishes it for the information of the public. If anyone has further information to contribute, and in particular can identify people in any of the Martin family photographs please contact Brett and Shellie Cummings, descendants of Alice, on

Thomas’ younger sister Alice was an avid photographer and left a fantastic collection. To view the collection click here.

Father: William Joseph MARTIN, born on 1 December 1865 at Coonatto, South Australia and died on 4 March 1913 on Murnpeowie Station on the Strzelecki Track in South Australia.  William was the son of Michael Martin and Caroline McCudden.

Mother: Ellen Josephine Elena CALLARY, born on 8 November 1871 in Gilbert, South Australia and died on 13 August 1949 in Jamestown, South Australia.  Ellen was the daughter of Philip Callary and Julia McAuliffe


Philip Laurence Martin was born on 31 December 1892 in Arkaba, South Australia.  He died at the age of four on 1 April 1897 in Marianville near Quorn, South Australia.

Myrtle Nellie Martin was born on 29 January 1895 in Farina, South Australia.  She died on 18 October 1973 at Prospect in South Australia.  She married Albert (Bert) Charles Wilson on 11 September 1913, in Farina, South Australia.  He was the son of John Wilson and Emily Caroline Beer.  Albert was born on 27 February 1891 in Gordon, South Australia and died on 5 December 1966 in Kilburn, Adelaide, South Australia.  Both are buried in the Dudley Park Cemetery in Adelaide, South Australia.

William Leslie Martin was born on 7 February 1899 in Birdsville, Queensland.  He died on 3 June 1973 in Hawker, South Australia.  He married Emily Elizabeth Chapman on 19 November 1928 in Farina, South Australia.  Emily was the daughter of Charles Kemble Chapman and Elizabeth Ann Gill.  Emily was born on 9 December 1906 in Blinman, South Australia and died on 19 February 1987 in Hawker, South Australia.  They are both buried in the Hawker Cemetery.

Eileen Elsie MARTIN was born on 3 August 1902 in Queensland.  She never married.  Eileen died on 1 January 1950 and was buried in the Dudley Park Cemetery, South Australia.

Alice Lottie Martin was born on 13 July 1904 in Queensland.  She never married.  Alice died on 17 July 1979 in Port Pirie, South Australia and was buried in the Port Pirie Cemetery.



James (Jim) Reginald Martin was born on 11 June 1927 in Hawker, South Australia.  Thomas was not James’s father but raised him as his own.  James first married Letitia Hatherley Rawlins and later he married Louise Gosden.  James died on 26 September 2009 and was buried on 1 October 2009 in Adelaide.

Geofrey Benjamin (Biffy) Martin was born on 10 February 1930 in Farina, South Australia.  He died on 13 April 1989, in Whyalla, South Australia.  He married Betty Christianson in Murray Town, South Australia.  She was the daughter of George Christianson and Katherine Harriet Tulloch.  Betty was born on 10 January 1928 in Booleroo Centre, South Australia and died on 25 July 2001 in Whyalla, South Australia. They are both buried in the Whyalla Cemetery.

Daphne Fay Martin was born on 9 March 1932 in Farina, South Australia and died on 4 August 2016 in Jamestown.  She married John William Brereton on 14 November 1953 in Jamestown, South Australia.  He was the son of William Thomas Brereton and Eva Letitia Skurray.  John was born on 7 January 1926 in Jamestown, South Australia and died on 27 May 1991 in Jamestown, South Australia. They are both buried in the Jamestown Cemetery.

Second daughter, still living, was born in 1934 in Farina, South Australia.

Third daughter, still living, was born in 1939 in Jamestown, South Australia.

Fourth daughter, still living, was born in 1944 in Jamestown, South Australia.

1 Michael MARTIN b:1841 d: 1/8/1903
   + Caroline McCUDDEN b: 1845 d: 8/6/1890
      2 William Joseph MARTIN 1/12/1865 d: 4/3/1913
         + Ellen Josephine Elena CALLARY b: 8/11/1871 d: 13/8/1949
            3 Philip Laurence Martin b: 31/12/1892 d: 1/4/1897
            3 Myrtle Nellie Martin b: 29/1/1895 d: 18/10/1973
            3 William Leslie Martin b: 7/2/1899 d: 3/6/1973
               + Emily Elizabeth Chapman b: 9/12/1906 d: 19/2/1987
                  4 William John Martin b: 22/8/1929 d: 6/2/1944
                  4 Muriel Irene Sylvia Martin b: 26/9/1931 d: 12/12/2015
                  4 Ronda Elizabeth Martin b: 23/12/1933 d: 16/10/1962
                  4 Valma Rosemary Martin b: 4/4/1942 d: 11/10/2013
                  4 Last child, a daughter, still living, was born in 1946
            3 Thomas Benjamin MARTIN b: 19/4/1900 d: 27/4/1973
               +  Evelyn Mabel Reid b: 1/10/1911 d: 13/11/1980
                  4 James (Jim) Reginald Martin b: 11/6/1927 d: 26/9/2009
                  4 Geofrey Benjamin (Biffy) Martin b: 10/2/1930 d: 13/4/1989
                  4 Daphne Fay Martin b: 9/3/1932 d: 4/8/2016
                  4 Second daughter, still living, b: 1934
                  4 Third daughter, still living, b: 1939
                  4 Fourth daughter, still living, b: 1944
            3 Eileen Elsie MARTIN b: 3/8/1902 d: 1/1/1950
            3 Alice Lottie Martin b: 13/7/1904 d: 17/7/1979
      2 Benjamin MARTIN b: 14/11/1867 d: 4/2/1921
      2 Thomas James MARTIN b: 20/2/1870 d: 21/4/1896
      2 Alice MARTIN b: 28/4/1872 d: 28/3/1917
      2 Caroline MARTIN b: 14/6/1874 d: 23/4/1923
      2 John MARTIN b: 17/1/1877 d: 1/1/1923
      2 Catherine Margaret MARTIN b: 9/4/1879 d: 28/3/1883

This Biography is a summary extracted from the full document which is available to view in the “Further Reading” tab.

Thomas Benjamin Martin as he was known was born on 19 April 1900 in Birdsville, Queensland.  However, his birth registration states he was named Thomas Angus Martin.  It is not clear why he adopted Thomas Benjamin or when he dropped Angus.  Thomas also used Benjamin as his first name on his marriage certificate.

Thomas attended school at Birdsville and Farina.  He was recognised as the most successful child in the second class of 1912 at the Farina School.

Thomas’s family had been in Farina since his father William Joseph Martin had taken on the job as Mail Driver in January 1912.  It was said that, by the time he was 14, Thomas was working as a station hand.  He continued to work as a station hand up to the late 1930’s.

Thomas Martin and Evelyn Reid met in Farina.  After courting, they were married on 19 September 1929 in Patterson’s Hall at Farina, South Australia.  Thomas was 29 and Evelyn was 18 years old.

Thomas and Evelyn honeymooned in Adelaide.  They caught the train from Farina and while in Adelaide had wedding photos taken.  After they were married, it is believed that Thomas and Evelyn lived in a small building attached to the Hostel, on the right hand side for some time before moving into a house on the edge of Farina out near where the sheep killing yards were located.

However, it was not all hard work at Farina.  Newspaper articles of the time indicate that residents of Farina and the surrounding area had a good social life.  The Martin’s were active members of the Farina Community.  They also travelled to surrounding properties.

Thomas was right in the middle of it.  Thomas was part of the organising committee for a Fancy Dress Ball held in Farina on 28 January 1924 and he was also the MC for the evening.  Thomas played the gramophonic at a Moonlight picnic in Farina in 1924 and is mentioned as the MC for other functions.  A DJ ahead of his time.

Thomas was also into horse racing.  He was a good horseman and participated in the Farina race meetings.  His horse Murnpeowie won a number of races in 1932 and 1933.   It is assumed the horse was named in memory of where his father died at Murnpeowie Station.

Thomas and Evelyn moved from Farina to Jamestown in 1938.

First, they lived in a small tin house on Gloucester Road, Jamestown for a number of years.  Then they moved into a stone house on Cronin Street near the pig yard opposite Brereton’s chaff shed before moving to a house on Cockburn Road, Jamestown in 1941.

In Jamestown, Thomas went well sinking and worked on a local farm.  He also worked on various other labouring jobs.  His last job was on the Road Gang for the Jamestown Council.  He retired from this position when he was 65 in 1965.

During WW2, Thomas was sent to Whyalla by the Government in 1941 to work in the iron smelter and stayed with May Johnston (nee Reid), his sister in law.

Thomas passed away on Friday, 27 April 1973 in the Jamestown Hospital from cancer of the oesophagus.  He was 73 years old.  Thomas was buried on Saturday, 28 April 1974 in the Jamestown Cemetery.

Thomas Martin was a true pioneer of South Australia, who worked hard to provide for his family.  He had a full and happy life.


There is no record of Thomas owning land at Farina.