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This website aims to develop case studies of the development of farming practices and attendant transformations of local ecologies of defined blocks of land. Through these biographies of particular plots of land we are developing localised analyses of the wider historical trends in the political economy/ecology of the Northern Rivers.

The Boyles’

Boyle's Bridge To land in Goolmangar selected by the McIntyre family in 1870 Michael Boyle moved his family and dairy herd from Jamberoo on the South Coast of NSW on train and overland from Armidale to take up a share farming opportunity. One of Michael’s sisters Grace married Tom McIntyre and on her deathbed in 1930, in witness of the Bishop of Lismore, she bequeathed the land to the Catholic Church. Different members of the family began to purchase the land from the church from the 1950s and the Boyles and McIntyres worked separate dairy farms on three different titles relying on family labour. In the 1950s Leonard Patrick Boyle and his brother Michael took over the rental as the dairy industry began to decline and the rest of the family moved into town, purchasing the land freehold in 1974. The original farm was owned by three separate families and farmed by three share-farmers with their own families. A mixture of dairying, pigs and small crops for the Sydney market had supported six families, and some casual labourers, between 30 to 40 people. Leonard stopped milking in 1989 ending a long family tradition and subdivided his farm in the 1990s, selling to his son Frank and his partner Andrea. The same land now supports just two families. Leonard continues to run beef cattle, while Frank and Andrea have achieved some success with pecans and brown-rice farming, selling direct at the local farmer’s market. The Catholic Church which stands on 2 acres of land on Boyle Road is testimony to a history of devout practice by the white settlers who have occupied the land for nearly 150 years.

More information can be found in Frank and Andrea Boyle’s Story and documents relating to the history of the property.

 

See more of the property

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