Local Identities

The Rigg Family of Wokalup, Western Australia

By Andrew Rigg, 2022.

The Rigg name is well-known in the Shire of Harvey with an association beginning when Herbert William (“Bill”) Rigg and his wife, Marjory (nee Migro), first settled in Wokalup early in the 20th century.  Bill would end up farming in the district for over 40 years and while some knew him as a gentleman farmer, few knew that Bill was also of noble and royal descent, coming to Australia as a remittance man.[1]

Although not one of the earliest settlers in the Harvey district, Bill and Marjory Rigg were among the pioneers of farming at Wokalup, a hamlet and farming community approximately six kilometres south of the Harvey townsite. His family continued to farm and live in the Harvey Shire for more than 100 years, making them one of the oldest families in the district.

Bill was born in 1870 at Bolton, Westmorland, England, the son of Lieutenant Colonel Hugh Rigg and Margaret Carthew. Bill married Marjory Migro (1873 – 1965) in Victoria in 1895 and then moved, along with his wife and young family, to Western Australia, where he farmed at Wokalup for over 40 years. He died at the Harvey Hospital on 17 June 1943.[2]

Marjory Rigg and Family. Marjory Rigg (centre), from the left – Morden, Herbert jnr. (rear), Godfrey, Alma (rear), Minnie, Gus and Hugh.

As well as farming, the Rigg name has a long association with sporting prowess, with successive generations of the family involved in a number of sports at a local, state and national level. Herbert and Marjory’s boys played cricket and football in Harvey and their daughter Alma once won the Harvey women’s tennis, golf and bowls championships all in the one year, a feat that likely hasn’t been repeated. Son, Godfrey, was also a keen cricketer and was President of the local Association and managed the country week team well into the 1950s.

Their granddaughter Marjory Rigg, captained the Australian and Western Australian women’s hockey team in the 1950s. She would have likely captained the Australian team at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics except for discriminatory rules that prevented women from competing in hockey at the Olympics at that time. Marjory also coached the New Zealand national women’s team and was inducted into the Australian Hockey Hall of Fame in 2012.[3]

Their grandsons Bert and Basil Rigg represented WA in Sheffield Shield cricket.  Basil also played for Perth in the WA Football League (WAFL) in the 1940s and made the all-Australian baseball team.[4] Bert became a successful sports administrator, representing Western Australia on the Australian Cricket Board and as Deputy Chairman and CEO of the Western Australian Cricket Association (WACA).[5] Three other grandsons, Eddie, Richie, and Kevin Rigg, played for the Perth Football Club in the 1960s. Bill and Marjory’s great grandson, Bradley Shine played for Carlton in the AFL in the 1980s, Swan Districts in the WAFL in the ‘80s and ‘90s and as captain, led the team to a premiership win in 1990.[6] [7]

Herbert William (Bill) Rigg was the youngest son and one of 16 children born to Lieutenant Colonel Hugh Rigg (1823-1881) and Margaret Carthew (1828-1901).  He was born and raised in Westmorland, England on his family’s estate, known as Crossrigg Hall.  The Hall itself, a stately Victorian manor house, was built by Bill’s father in the early 1860s, following his retirement from the East India Company’s (E.I.C.) Indian Army.[8] The Hall still stands today and at the time of writing is being converted into a luxury hotel and spa.[9]

Herbert (Bill) William Rigg

Lt. Col. Hugh Rigg (Bill’s father) was the son of Reverend Hugh Rigg and his wife Maria Addison. [10] [11] Hugh (jnr) was born in 1823 in Patrick Brompton, Yorkshire.[12] His father, originally from Crosby Ravensworth in Westmorland, was the Rector of St Patrick’s Church in Patrick Brompton for almost 55 years.[13]  Maria Addison’s family was a prominent Westmorland family and her uncle, Robert Addison a successful tea merchant with interests in South East Asia.

Reverend Hugh Rigg (Bill’s paternal grandfather)

Children of Reverend Hugh Rigg and Maria Addison –

  • Jonathan (1809 – 1871)[14]
  • Elizabeth (1811)[15]
  • Margaret (1812 – 1906)[16]
  • Dinah Maria (1814)[17]
  • Christopher Robert (1819 – 1894)[18]
  • Hugh (jnr) (1823 – 1881)[19]

Jonathan (christened 13 April 1809 at St Patrick’s, Patrick Brompton, Yorkshire, died in 1871 at Jasinga, Java, Dutch East Indies.)

Hugh junior was the youngest of 6 children, he had two older brothers and three sisters.  Hugh jnr’s elder brother Jonathan would go on to travel the world and become a successful tea merchant. He jointly owned the Jasinga tea plantation in Java with his mother’s uncle, Robert Addison, whose share in the plantation he later inherited.

He was a prominent member of the colonial community in Java. He was an amateur geologist and anthropologist and had published papers on the geology and the peoples of Java in local journals, a book called A Sketch of the Geology of Jasinga, and in 1862 the first English-Sunda dictionary, A Dictionary of the Sunda Language of Java, which is still in print.[20] [21]

He died on the 1 February 1871, his daughter, Emma, inheriting Jasinga.[22]

Hugh (jnr) (1823 – 1881)

In 1840 at the age of 17, and perhaps encouraged by the travels of his elder brother, young Hugh enlisted as an officer cadet in the Honourable East India Company’s Indian Army and shipped out in February 1841 to what was then known as the Madras Presidency.[23] [24] Here he served first as a junior officer and later, as he continued to climb the ranks, became a senior officer of the 21st Madras Native Infantry. Records from the time show Hugh spent most of his career in India, but also spent varying periods of time in Malacca in modern Malaysia, then in China and Pegu in modern day Myanmar, where he served as Aide-de-camp to his commanding officer and father-in-law, then Major General Carthew.[25]  He also spent extended periods of time in Singapore, where the 21st Madras Native Infantry was deployed as the island colony’s main military force between the years of 1846 and 1849.[26]

Lt Col. Hugh Rigg (Bill’s father)

Morden Carthew was Hugh’s superior and commanding officer of the 21st Madras Native Infantry. He was from a distinguished Cornish family, and along with his Scottish wife, Jemima (née Ewart), direct descendants of English, Scottish and European nobility and royalty.[27] The Carthews originated from Cornwall but had lived at Woodbridge Abbey in Woodbridge, Suffolk for several generations. Morden was the son of the Reverend Morden Carthew and the great-great grandson of Thomas Carthew, Esq., a prominent London barrister and Serjeant-at-Law in the late 17th century.[28]

His wife Jemima Ewart was a direct descendant of King Christian I of Denmark, Sweden and Norway and Kings Henry VII of England and James III, IV & V of Scotland. She also shares descent with her husband from King’s Edward III and IV whilst Morden is also descended from Edward II of England.[29] [30]

General Morden Carthew (Bill’s maternal grandfather)

Carthew is described in a poem by contemporary Malay poet, Abdullah B. Abdul-Kadir, for his role in leading soldiers fighting a fire in Kampong Gelang, Singapore in 1847.[31] He is believed to be the subject of a painting by acclaimed colonial artist, J.T. Thompson, featuring the presentation of a ceremonial sword to the Sultan of Jahore by the British in 1846.[32]  His somewhat controversial involvement in the 1857 Indian Mutiny has also been well documented,[33] ultimately resulting in him receiving the Companion of the Order of Bath from Queen Victoria and a promotion, upon retirement, to the rank of full General.[34]  He is also named as petitioner in a little known legal claim before the High Court of Admiralty, by former Indian Army soldiers for a share of what was known as the Banda and Kirwee Booty; an Indian treasure horde captured by British soldiers during mop-up campaigns in Bengal in the year following the 1857 Mutiny and worth then more than £700,000 Sterling (around £92million Sterling today). Ultimately General Carthew was unsuccessful in his claim for a share of the treasure.[35] [36]

Family history reports that Hugh became close to his commanding officer’s eldest child Margaret, born 17 September 1828, in Madras India and during a brief furlough in England, he proposed marriage. The proposal was accepted and the two were married by the Reverend H. Moule in Singapore on the 11th January 1848.[37]

Following their marriage, Hugh and Margaret Rigg continued to live in India and South East Asia, with nine of their children born during this time in Singapore and India.

Children of Hugh (jnr) and Margaret Carthew –

  • Hugh Carthew (Singapore 1849 – 1913)[38] [39]
  • Maria Addison (Madras, India 1850 – 1920)[40]
  • Morden (Madras, India 1852 – 1936)[41] [42]
  • Robert Addison Rigg (born at sea off Azores 1853 – 1925)[43]
  • Margaret (1855 – 1856)
  • Mary (1856 – 1879)
  • Fanny (India 1857)
  • Jemima Ewart (India 1859 – 1941)[44]
  • Jonathan (Patrick Brompton, Yorkshire 1860)[45]
  • Charles Alfred (1863)
  • Annie Emily (Scorton, Yorkshire 1865)[46]
  • George (1866)
  • Frederick James (Bolton, Westmorland 1868 – 1896)[47]
  • Godfrey Edward (Bolton, Westmorland 1869)[48]
  • Herbert William (“Bill”) Rigg (Bolton, Westmorland 1870 – 1943)[49]
  • Ada Maggie (Bolton, Westmorland 1871)[50] [51]

Details of the source of Hugh’s fortune are scant, but it seems he prospered during his time as an officer in the Indian Army and in 1862 inherited property in England, following the death of his great uncle, Robert Addison.

(Morning Herald, 10 April 1862)

England & Wales, National Probate Calendar, 1858-1995[52]

Addison passed away at Crossrigg Hall in Bolton, Westmoreland on 6 April 1862 and left Hugh his Crossrigg estate, consisting of farm land and house.

A probate record from the time (see figure, above) valued Robert Addison’s estate in 1862 at under £140,000 which is equivalent in today’s terms, to £19million Pounds Sterling, or nearly $33million Australian dollars.[53]

Addison was a successful tea merchant and minutes of evidence given by him before a Parliamentary Select Committee hearing into trade in Asia in 1821 document his interests in India as well as Java and his initial employment with the E.I.C. before becoming a private trader, dealing mainly in the region of Java and Singapore.[54] He is also named as one of the founding directors of the new Eden Valley Railway in 1858 and again as a director in 1862.[55] [56]

Upon news of his inheritance of house and land at Crossrigg, Hugh Rigg, on 5 August 1862, resigned his commission with the Indian Army and returned with his family to England.  He received his final promotion in retirement from Major to Lieutenant Colonel, on 23 September 1862.[57]

He soon began the work of building a new family home on the site of the original Crossrigg Hall, after first demolishing the existing structure. His new home would be an impressive 40-room manor house, designed by London architect, Anthony Slaven.[58] [59] A newspaper report in September 1863 gives an account of a substantial dinner held at the site of the new Hall’s construction, celebrating the efforts of the building workers who had completed the timber-raising stage of the new mansion. Upwards of eighty people attended and competitive wrestling matches were staged after the dinner. The Penrith Observer reports three cheers were given to Mr Rigg at the end of the day and reported this event as the first of its kind to be staged in the county.[60]

Crossrigg Hall, Bolton, Westmoreland, a Grade II listed building.[61]

Lt. Col. Hugh also inherited the ancient title of “High Sheriff of Westmorland” and served as Deputy Lieutenant for the same county. As well as farming the land at Crossrigg, he also was a Justice of the Peace and a Magistrate.[62] [63]

Hugh Rigg passed away at the relatively young age of 58, on the 26th March 1881 at Crossrigg Hall, pre-deceasing Margaret by more than 20 years and leaving the Crossrigg estate to his eldest son, also named Hugh.[64]

Robert Addison Rigg (1853 – 1925), son of Lt. Col. Hugh Rigg and Margaret Carthew, followed in his father’s footsteps and entered the Royal Army as an officer cadet at the Royal Military College at Woolwich in London.  He went on to serve as professor of mathematics and artillery at the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, from 1884 to 1890. He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 1889. Following time spent in Canada, he returned to England before spending five years in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), after which he returned to England and commanded the Garrison Artillery at Sheerness in Kent for three years.  He briefly returned to Canada before retiring in England in 1904, having attained the rank of Colonel. He never married and passed away on the 8th December 1925 at Ross Lodge, Kendall, Westmorland, not far from Crossrigg Hall, his family home. He was 72.[65]

Maria Addison Rigg (1850 – 1920)

Of Bill’s 15 siblings, only one other, his elder sister Maria Addison Rigg, married and had children. Maria married another military man, Frederick Blanchard (or Blanshard) in 1876 and gave birth to a daughter, Kathleen, in 1886. Kathleen, however, never married and died without issue in 1968.[66] [67] This means Bill’s Australian born family and their successive offspring are the only remaining descendants of Lt Col Hugh and Margaret Rigg.

Penrith Observer, 30 March 1920.

Herbert William Rigg (“Bill”) 1870 – 1943

Bill was born on 24th June 1870 in Bolton Westmorland and was just ten years of age when his father passed away on the 26th March 1881.[68] [69]  By this time his oldest brother, Hugh, was ensconced as the head of the family and was responsible for running the Crossrigg farms and for the maintenance of his widowed mother, unmarried sisters and seven youngest siblings, most of whom were still children at the time of their father’s death.

It is likely that, being raised in a military household, Bill grew up hearing of his father’s exploits in the Indian Army, and looked up to his elder brother Robert as he travelled the world and climbed the ranks in the Royal Artillery.  Perhaps this instilled a sense of adventure in young Bill, or perhaps because of a lack of alternative prospects, Bill enlisted as a cadet at the Royal Military College of Canada, where at that time his brother Robert was a professor. Bill, probably still in his teens, left his childhood home of Crossrigg Hall and embarked on a journey across the ocean to Kingston, Ontario, where he was inducted as an officer cadet.

Whether military life failed to live up to his expectations, or perhaps rebelling against his family’s intentions for him, Bill’s time in Kingston was cut short. In a brash move and lapse of good judgement, Bill reputedly broke into his older brother’s office and stole the answers to an upcoming exam. He then, the story goes, distributed the answers among his fellow cadets before absconding from the college, making his way to a ship bound for England with the intention of returning home.

News of his escapade reached Crossrigg Hall before he did and upon arrival in England, he found himself being swiftly packed off to Australia as recompense for his actions, but not without a regular salary from England. He was probably entrusted into the care of his older brother, Frederick, who seems to have been living in Warragul, Victoria at that time.[70]

The date of his arrival in the Victorian colony hasn’t been found, but it was prior to 1895, his 25th year, as this was the year of his marriage to Victorian-born daughter of French/Belgian and Irish immigrants, Marjory Migro. Marjory was two years Bill’s junior and was born in Wallan, Victoria.[71] Her parents were Augustus Cornelius Migro, French born of Belgian parents,[72] and Ellen McBride, born in County Donegal Ireland.[73]

Bill and Marjory were farmers for most of their time in Victoria. At first they lived near Ararat where the first of their children was born in 1896, then in the Gippsland region near Drouin where the next two were born. Their fourth was born in Brighton –

  • Herbert William (Ararat, Victoria 1896 – 1960) [74] [75]
  • Augustus Cornelius (Drouin, Victoria 1897 – 1983) [76]
  • Godfrey Edward (Drouin, Victoria 1899 – 1962) [77]
  • Alma Kathleen (Brighton, Victoria 1901).[78]

A report in the Victoria Police Gazette dated August 1896 names Bill as a farmer at Drouin West and records the theft of two bay geldings from his property on the 4th of August 1896, valued at £30.[79]

Bill Rigg and Marjory Migro on their wedding day in 1895.

A Move to Western Australia

On the 12th March 1903, Bill is named as being present at a sale held at the Mechanic’s Institute in Perth, Western Australia, where newly sub-divided land at Wokalup, south of Harvey was being sold, and where he purchased 20 acres of his own on Dixon Avenue. The undeveloped townsite and land around Wokalup had been purchased in 1902 by a Victorian syndicate and subdivided into farm, orchard and townsite lots.[80]  It seems likely that Bill heard of the opening up of this land while still in Victoria and travelled across to see it for himself, before making the decision to purchase his first 20 acres.  Later that same year, Bill travelled back to W.A. by steamship with his family, arriving at Fremantle.

Initially the family stayed with Marjory’s family, the Migros. Marjory’s father, Augustus Cornelius had earlier brought his family to W.A. following the goldrush from Victoria and working in mines in Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie. Marjory’s younger brother Con, also worked in the mines in the W.A. Goldfields, and in 1925 would die following an accident in which he fell headfirst into a mine shaft in Coolgardie, severely damaging his spine.[81]

Bill and Marjory’s grandson, Edward (Eddie) Hayward Rigg, recalls his father, Godfrey, talking about the family’s early days in the West.  According to Eddie, upon arrival in W.A., Bill found and purchased a draft horse and dray, two essential items for starting to farm the land he had purchased in Wokalup. About a week after arriving in Fremantle, Bill and his two older boys (Bert and Gus) loaded up their new purchase and set off for Wokalup by road, leaving Marjory and the younger children to follow by train once Bill had established a tent on the new farm. Eddie recalls his dad, Godfrey, telling him he was affronted as he was considered too young to go with the bigger boys on the horse and dray.

It took Bill, Bert and Gus 14 days to travel the Old Coast Road from Perth to Wokalup. In those days the road was a dirt track.  Upon arrival at Wokalup, Bill set up a canvas tent as their temporary accommodation and Marjorie and the younger children then came by train to join them.

This purchase and settlement in Wokalup marked the start of the Rigg family’s long and continuing connection with the Harvey Shire – 119 years long at the time of writing.

Bill and Marjory went on to have three more children, two sons and a daughter, all born in Harvey –

  • Morden Addison (1904 – 1990) [82]
  • Hugh (1908 – 1968) [83] [84]
  • Margaret (‘Minnie’) Carthew (1911 – 2002) [85] [86]

In the early days, and to supplement his farm income and the money that came from England, Bill worked a couple of days a week for Thomas Hayward at the historic Bundidup farm on the Mornington Road.  Bill would walk 3-4 miles to work carrying a yoke and two old kerosene tins. On his return home in the evening, he would fill the tins at the Wokalup train station’s water tank – Wokalup was an important railway junction in those day, servicing the Mornington timber mill. Many years later, Bill’s son Godfrey would marry Thomas Hayward’s daughter Jean.

Eddie remembers his grandmother, Marjory, as a wonderful and smiling lady who coped incredibly well with living in a tent with a pile of children. Marjory would use the water from Bill’s buckets for washing, cleaning, and cooking before the homestead was built and a permanent water source located closer to home.

The Rigg children would walk to school in Harvey every day – 1.5 miles into Wokalup and then along the railway line into Harvey. In one story recounted to Eddie by his father, on one morning journey to school, Gus found a stash of cash hidden in a creek. The kids took the money into the police station in Harvey and discovered the loot they found was the proceeds of a crime and a thief was eventually apprehended.

As the Rigg family expanded and the original land was cleared and farmed, some of Bill’s sons purchased undeveloped nearby land. This included adjoining uncleared land on Dixon Avenue and Marriott Road (later renamed Leitch Road), that was not part of the original Wokalup land sale. This was purchased by Gus Rigg and his younger brother Hugh in the 1930s. Hugh and Gus cleared the land using teams of bullocks and draft horses. They farmed beef cattle and grew beans and potatoes. Hugh, at the prompting of his son Colin, later became a dairy farmer, a move that turned out to be fortuitous at the time. Some of the original land on Dixon Avenue remained in the Rigg family for more than 100 years, farmed by Colin, Bill’s grandson, until its sale in 2011.

Benger Swamp also played an important role and provided a source of income for the family with Bill’s sons Godfrey, Gus & Hugh taking up plots of land on which they used teams of draft horses to plough the boggy swamp land and plant and grow crops of potatoes, beans and sweet corn.  The process of preparing the land for planting was thankless work, undertaken in the January heat, dodging tiger snakes and dealing with incessant swarms of flies.

Eddie recalls the role Benger grown potatoes played in the war effort of World War 2.  According to Eddie, up until the fall of Singapore in 1942 allied troops were fed Benger potatoes and an export market in the UK was also developed with Benger potatoes, Australian lamb and other Harvey produce featuring in many a traditional English Sunday roast.

Bill, Marjory and their children left a mark on the district and while none of the original land is now owned by the family, the family has grown in size and many of their descendants still own property and live in the Harvey Shire. The original homestead built by Bill on Dixon Ave is still standing and the sign for Rigg Road is a landmark at Myalup on the Forrest Highway, between Perth and Bunbury.

Royal Descent

In finishing off this brief history of the Rigg family, their origins and arrival in Wokalup, Western Australia, it is worth mentioning Bill Rigg’s relationship to ‘the Gateway Ancestor Project’ and his royal ancestry.

The Gateway Ancestor Project exists in several different forms among established genealogical groups and societies. The project’s original aim was to verify the identity of the descendants of royalty and nobility of the British Isles among the early settlers of the American colonies with a particular focus on the 17th century. One project in particular, the Wikitree Gateway Ancestor Project, ‘Gateway Descendants from Edward III’, has opened up the search for gateway ancestors to the newer colonies of South Africa and Australia.

As the name suggests, the project seeks to verify descendants of King Edward III among early settlers outside of America in a similar way to the US project, however, with these new colonies being younger, accepting later arrivals in the 18th and 19th centuries.

King Edward III (1312-1377) was chosen as the bench mark for the project as he lived long enough ago to potentially have a number of direct descendants in the colonies, although not so long ago that large numbers of people could trace their ancestry back to him.

The Wikitree project has independently verified and confirmed that Bill Rigg meets the criteria of an Australian Gateway Ancestor and is directly descended through both his Carthew grandparents (Morden and Jemima) from King Edward III. This makes him, at the time of writing, one of only four other confirmed Gateway Ancestors in Australia, and the only one to have settled in Western Australia.[87]

The project team has also confirmed that Bill is a direct descendant of a number of more recent royalty, including King Christian I of Sweden, Denmark and Norway (1424-1481), King Edward IV of England (1442-1483), King James III of Scotland (1451-1488), King Henry VII of England (1457-1509), King James IV of Scotland (1473-1513) and King James V of Scotland, (1512-1542).[88] [89]

Herbert William (Bill) Rigg’s Descent from James V, King of Scots.

The following pedigree is, in part, based on research published in 2008 in The Genealogist, by English genealogical researcher and author Edward J Davies.[90] It was also independently researched and verified by this author and independently verified by the project leaders of the Wikitree Gateway Ancestor Project. Davies’ original research proved the descent of former British Prime Minister, Hon. Sir Tony Blair, from James V and other English and European royals, and his own relationship to the Rigg family of Harvey through John Ewart (1752-1830), father of Jemima Carthew and great grandfather of Bill Rigg.[91]

  1. JAMES V King of Scots, (b.1513-d.1542), son of James IV of Scotland and Margaret Tudor.
  2. ROBERT STEWART, 1st Earl of Orkney and illegitimate son of James V and EUPHEMIA ELPHINSTONE (b.1509), daughter of Alexander Elphinstone, 1st Lord Elphinstone and Elizabeth Barley. Married JEAN KENNEDY (d.1598), daughter of Gilbert Kennedy, 3rd Earl of Cassilis and Margaret Kennedy.
  3. JEAN STEWART (b.c1563), married PATRICK LESLIE, 1st Lord Lindores (d.1608), son of Andrew Leslie, 5th Earl of Rothes and Grizel Hamilton.
  4. ROBERT LESLIE, (b.1598-d.c1675), gentleman of the privy chamber to King Charles I. Married CATHERINE BASSET (b.1617), daughter of Edward and Elizabeth Basset.
  5. CHARLES LESLIE[92] (d.1704) married WILLIAM DICK of Grange (b.1643-d.1694), son of William Dick and Janet McMath.
  6. CATHERINE DICK (b.1677), married JAMES CHRISTIE (b.1675-d.1749), son of James Christie and Janet Foulis.
  7. MARGARET CHRISTIE (b.1713-d.1776), married JAMES EWART of Mullock, Kirkcudbrightshire (b.c1707-d.1799), son of Andrew Ewart and Agnes Grierson.
  8. JOHN EWART of Mullock and Newington, officer of the customs at Greenock, Renfrewshire (b.1752-d.1830), married MARGARET BORLAND (d.1836), daughter of James Borland.[93]
  9. JEMIMA BORLAND EWART (b.1810-d.1863), fifth daughter of John Ewart of Mullock, married General MORDEN CARTHEW (b.1804-d.1888) in India in 1827, the son of Reverend Morden Carthew and Emily Tweed Pyke
  10. MARGARET CARTHEW (b.1828-d.1901), first child and daughter of the above, married Lieutenant Colonel HUGH RIGG (b.1823-d.1881), son of Reverend Hugh Rigg and Maria Addison in Singapore in 1848.
  11. HERBERT WILLIAM RIGG (b.1870-d.1943), married MARJORY MIGRO in Victoria, Australia in 1895 (b.1872-d.1965), daughter of Augustus Cornelius Migro and Ellen McBride.

Herbert William Rigg (Bill) is the eighth great-grandson of King James V of Scotland.


Catherine Rees, Edward Rigg, Barbara Rigg and Denis Rigg.

About the Author

Andrew Rigg is the great grandson of Bill and Marjory Rigg and son of Colin Arthur Rigg.  He grew up on the family dairy farm on Dixon Ave and Leitch Rd Wokalup across the road from the original Rigg farm and homestead.  He is an avid amateur historian and genealogist and a professional community developer and former news journalist.  Whilst Wokalup will always be home he has lived and worked around Australia, Africa and South East Asia.  He currently lives in Singapore with his wife Maya where he is CEO of a community development NGO.  He has three adult children, all of whom still live in the Harvey Shire.

© Andrew H. Rigg 2022


[1] An emigrant from Britain sent by their family to the colonies following the committing of disgraces and paid a salary in order to stay away. Remittance Man. Wikipedia.com. Online: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Remittance_man

[2] Obituary, Harvey-Waroona Mail, 1 July 1943.

[3] Lacy, B. “Passion the key for hockey legend”. The West Australian, 7 December 2012. Online: https://thewest.com.au/sport/passion-the-key-for-hockey-legend-crossen-ng-ya-286072

[4] “Basil Rigg”, Wikipedia.com. Online: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basil_Rigg

[5] Lewis, R. “Another honour for Lilee”. The West Australian, 16 December 2009. Online: https://thewest.com.au/sport/cricket/another-honour-for-lillee-ng-ya-227246

[6] “Brad Shine”, Wikipedia.com. Online: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brad_Shine

[7] Devaney, J. Brad Shine. Australian Football. Accessed 22 July 2022. Online: https://australianfootball.com/players/player/Brad+Shine/11995

[8] The London Gazette, September 23rd, 1862. P.4597. Online: https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/22665/page/4597/data.pdf

[9] Dempsey, B. “Eden District Council receive application for luxury hotel near Penrith”. The Cumberland News. 20 March 2022. Online: https://www.newsandstar.co.uk/news/20006294.eden-district-council-receive-application-site-nr-penrith/

[10] England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 database, FamilySearch. Online: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J39F-J4C

[11] Note: The Addisons were also a prominent Westmorland family with rumoured links to nobility.

[12] England Marriages, 1538–1973 database, FamilySearch, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NLDS-JTG

[13] “Deaths” in The Gentleman’s Magazine and Historical Review, Vol. 1, Jan.-June, 1866. P. 602.

[14] Jonathan Rigg, England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, database, FamilySearch. Accessed 22 July 2022. Online: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NL62-MMX ,

[15] Elizabeth Rigg. England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, database, FamilySearch. Accessed 22 July 2022. Online: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JS1N-T98

[16] Margaret Rigg. England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, database, FamilySearch. Accessed 22 July 2022. Online: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JQRC-XY6

[17] Dinah Maria Rigg. England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, database, FamilySearch. Accessed 22 July 2022. Online: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JM4B-5JV

[18] Christopher Robert Rigg. England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, database, FamilySearch. Accessed 22 July 2022. Online: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J39F-J4L

[19] Hugh Rigg. England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975, database, FamilySearch. Accessed 22 July 2022. Online: https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MQ5C-59J

[20] Rigg, J. (1862) A Dictionary of the Sunda Language of Java. Online: https://www.amazon.com/Dictionary-Sunda-Language-Java/dp/1279016469

[21] The Journal of the Indian Archipelago and Eastern Asia, vol VII, 1853. p.261.

[22] van Motman, C.R. (2006) De Familie Van Motman 1600-2006, p.58

[23] The Asiatic Journal and Monthly Register for British and Foreign India, China and Australasia. Vol. 35 – New Series. May-August 1841. P. 51.

[24] The Madras Presidency encompassed most of southern India including the city of Madras, modern Chennai.

[25] The Quarterly Army List of Her Majesty’s Regiments and of Her Majesty’s Indian Military Force on the Madras Establishment: Detailing the Rank, Standing, Various Services, and Dates of Commission of each Officer in the Army, and Distinguishing Those who have received Medals or other Honours. Pharoah and Co, 1861. P. 155.

[26] Falarti, M.M. “The Hullabaloo Surrounding the Origin of the Muharram Festival Amongst the Sunni Malays: The Myth of the Shi‘a Indian Sepoys in Nineteenth Century Malay Peninsula” in Journal of Shi’a Islamic Studies, Vol. 9, No. 4, Autumn 2016. Pp. 455-478.

[27] Davies, E.J. “A Descent of Tony Blair from James V, King of Scots”, The Genealogist, Vol. 22, No. 2 (Fall 2008): page 247-255.

[28] The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900: Carthew, Thomas. by William Prideaux Courtney.

[29] Rigg, A. “Jemima Borland (Ewart) Carthew (1810-1863)”, Wikitree.com. Online: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Ewart-536

[30] Davies, E.J. “A Descent of Tony Blair from James V, King of Scots”, The Genealogist, Vol. 22, No. 2 (Fall 2008): page 249.

[31] Skinner, C. “Shaer Kampong Gelam Terbakar oleh Abdullah B. Abdul-Kadir, edited with notes”, in Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, January, 1972, Vol. 45, No. 1 (221) (January, 1972), pp. 21-56.

[32] As recorded in a book about J.T. Thomson’s paintings of colonial Singapore – page in question is in the authors possession but details of the book are unavailable at time of writing.

[33] Adye, John. (1858), Defence of Cawnpore by The Troops Under the Orders of Major General Charles A. Wyndham C.B in November 1857, https://archive.org/details/in.ernet.dli.2015.33934/page/n1/mode/2up?q=carthew

[34] The London Gazette, 15 February 1878. p.750. Online: https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/24552/page/750/data.pdf

[35] Bandar and Kirwee Booty. Judgement of the Right Honourable Stephen Lushington D.L.C., Delivered on the 30th of June 1866. (1866). H.M. Stationary Office London.

[36] In terms of its value, the Banda and Kirwee Booty was possibly the largest individual booty captured by British soldiers in land action in modern history.  It is therefore surprising how little is known about the prize and how little has been said about it in the historical record.  The main source of details about the Booty are the book referenced above and Hansard from an original British parliamentary enquiry into the ownership of the Booty.  The parliament at that time decided the ownership and distribution of the Booty should be decided by the Admiralty as the only existing precedents were booties captured following naval battles. We know the Booty was valued at least at £700,000 as this was the value of the original, individual claim lodged by General Whitlock for his share of the Booty.  Whitlock’s claim was ultimately denied and instead he received a payout of £12,000. Source: FIBIS. Online: https://wiki.fibis.org/w/Banda_and_Kirwee_Prize_Money

[37] “Marriages”, The Yorkshire Gazette, April 8, 1848. P. 5.

[38] “British Newspaper Archive, Family Notices,” database with images, FamilySearch(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:2:QPMV-Q17T : 18 April 2019), Entry for Hugh Carthew Rigg, Manchester, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom; records extracted by FamilySearch, images digitized by FindMyPast; citing Obituary, 25 Apr 1913, Manchester, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom, The British Library, London; FHL microfilm .

[39] “England and Wales Census, 1911,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:2:1G88-54V : 23 July 2019), Household of Hugh C Rigg, Bolton, Westmorland, England, United Kingdom; from “1911 England and Wales census,” database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing PRO RG 14, The National Archives of the UK, Kew, Surrey.

[40] “India Births and Baptisms, 1786-1947”, database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:2:MY5B-4XQ : 5 February 2020), Entry for Maria Addison Rigg, 1851.

[41] “England and Wales Census, 1911,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:2:1GYV-VMP : 3 July 2019), Household of Morden Rigg, Chester, Cheshire, England, United Kingdom; from “1911 England and Wales census,” database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing PRO RG 14, The National Archives of the UK, Kew, Surrey.

[42] “England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007”, database, FamilySearch(https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:2:QKR9-CKJZ : 3 November 2021), Entry for Morden Rigg, 1936.

[43] “England and Wales Census, 1881,” database with images, FamilySearch(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:Q2WM-GQL4 : 11 December 2017), Robt Addison Rigg in household of Hugh Barthew Rigg, Bolton, Westmorland, England; from “1881 England, Scotland and Wales Census,” database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing p. 3, Piece/Folio 5204/43, The National Archives, Kew, Surrey; FHL microfilm 101,775,436.

[44] “England and Wales Census, 1901,” database, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XSZR-QH9 : 6 April 2022), Jemima E Rigg in household of Margaret Rigg, Lillington, Warwickshire, England, United Kingdom; from “1901 England, Scotland and Wales census,” database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing subdistrict, PRO RG 13, The National Archives, Kew, Surrey.

[45] “England and Wales Census, 1881,” database with images, FamilySearch(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:Q2WM-GQPW : 11 December 2017), Jonathan Rigg in household of Hugh Barthew Rigg, Bolton, Westmorland, England; from “1881 England, Scotland and Wales Census,” database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing p. 3, Piece/Folio 5204/43, The National Archives, Kew, Surrey; FHL microfilm 101,775,436.

[46] “England and Wales Census, 1871”, database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V557-JDD : 28 June 2022), Herbert William Rigg in entry for Hugh Rigg, 1871.

[47] “England and Wales Census, 1881,” database with images, FamilySearch(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:Q2WM-GQP5 : 11 December 2017), Frederick James Rigg in household of Hugh Barthew Rigg, Bolton, Westmorland, England; from “1881 England, Scotland and Wales Census,” database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing p. 3, Piece/Folio 5204/43, The National Archives, Kew, Surrey; FHL microfilm 101,775,436.

[48] “England and Wales Census, 1871”, database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V557-JD8 : 28 June 2022), Godfrey Edward Rigg in entry for Hugh Rigg, 1871.

[49] “England and Wales Census, 1871”, database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V557-JDD : 28 June 2022), Herbert William Rigg in entry for Hugh Rigg, 1871.

[50] “England and Wales Census, 1891,” database with images, FamilySearch(https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:WGG4-76Z : 1 March 2021), Ada M Rigg in household of Margaret Rigg, Cubbington, Warwickshire, England, United Kingdom; from “1891 England, Scotland and Wales census,” database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing PRO RG 12, Warwickshire county, subdistrict, The National Archives of the UK, Kew, Surrey.

[51] RIGG, Hugh 1822-1881, Roll of Subscribers to Madras Military Fund, The National Archives. Online: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/448e72c3-606c-4d87-a6a8-74344247053a

[52] Ancestry.co.uk – England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1995

[53] CPI Inflation Calculator. Officialdata.org. Accessed: 22 July 2022. Online: https://www.officialdata.org/uk/inflation/1862?amount=140000

[54] Parliamentary Papers Vol. 6 (1821). HM Stationary Office. Pp. 222-230. Online: https://books.google.com.sg/books?id=ViMSAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA223&lpg=PA223&dq=%22robert+addison%22+Java&source=bl&ots=KHwxNud_x9&sig=ACfU3U01gf1SU74MJI06R_wTc988IXMLbA&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj2vf2ut9n3AhWpTGwGHRp1DmoQ6AF6BAgeEAM#v=onepage&q=%22robert%20addison%22&f=false

[55] Kirby, M.W. (2002). The Origin of Railway Enterprise: The Stockton and Darlington Railway 1821-1863, p.188. Cambridge University Press.

[56] (1862) “104. Eden Valley”. Bradshaw’s Railway Manual, Shareholders Guide, and Official Directory. W.J. Adams, London. P.86. Online: https://books.google.com.sg/books?id=09s1AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA86&lpg=PA86&dq=%22robert+addison%22+merchant+westmorland&source=bl&ots=lbMuRDVaqj&sig=ACfU3U3F9GdwlTBYWTf1OWttGU0jelUgFA&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiHndHWvdn3AhVVXmwGHUJEDrcQ6AF6BAgoEAM#v=onepage&q=%22robert%20addison%22%20merchant%20westmorland&f=false

[57] The London Gazette, 23 September 1862. p. 4597. Online: https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/22665/page/4597/data.pdf

[58] Henrys, R. “This beautiful mansion in Eden sold for at least £2.7 million”, News & Star: The Cumberland News. Online: https://www.newsandstar.co.uk/news/18860664.beautiful-mansion-eden-sold-least-2-7-million/

[59] “Crossrigg Hall”, Bolton Village in the Heart of Eden. Online: https://www.boltonvillage.org.uk/history-ch-8/

[60] Penrith Observer, 29 September 1863.

[61] Crossrigg Hall, Bolton, Cumbria – Photos (britishlistedbuildings.co.uk)

[62] “Naval and Military Intelligence”, The Morning Post, Friday, April 1, 1881. P. 5

[63] “Sheriff of Westmorland”, Wikipedia.com. Online: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheriff_of_Westmorland

[64] London Gazette, 29 April 1881. p.2078, .https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/24967/page/2078/data.pdf

[65] Royal Military College of Canada Review: Log of HMS Stone Frigate. Fiftieth Anniversary Number, June 1926. p.92.

[66] “England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007”, database, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QVCP-SLH7 : 1 November 2021), Kathleen M Blanshard, 1968.

[67] Maria and her husband were both born in India, as was their daughter Kathleen.  Frederick was an officer in the Indian Army and attained the rank of Lieutenant Colonel before retiring to England before the age of 52.  Kathleen is recorded as living in St Leonards Sussex with her mother and father in both the 1901 and 1911 UK census’ and her death certificate records her dying without next of kin in a nursing home in Sussex and records her occupation as “church worker”.

[68] England & Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1837-1915 General Register Office. England and Wales Civil Registration Indexes. London, England: General Register Office.

[69] London Gazette, 29 April 1881. p. 2078.

[70] Manifest of the ship Thermopylae lists Bill’s older brother, Frederic James Rigg, as a passenger travelling from England to Sydney in 1887 and a probate document dated 1897 records his death at sea on the 18th March 1896.  This document records his place of residence as Warragul Colony Victoria. Warragul is not far (about 7.5kms) from Drouin, the birthplace of two of Herbert William’s children.

[71] Births, Deaths and Marriages Victoria (https://bdm.vic.gov.au). Birth: MAGRO (sic), Marjory. [spelling mistake in original record]

[72] Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/174794510/augustus-cornelius-migro : accessed 02 June 2022), memorial page for Augustus Cornelius Migro (1842–Oct 1884), Find a Grave Memorial ID 174794510, citing Creswick Cemetery, Creswick, Hepburn Shire, Victoria, Australia.

[73] Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/211316835/ellen-migro : accessed 02 June 2022), memorial page for Ellen McBride Migro (27 Aug 1851–3 Jun 1925), Find a Grave Memorial ID 211316835, citing Bendigo Public Cemetery, Bendigo, Greater Bendigo City, Victoria, Australia.

[74] Births, Deaths and Marriages Victoria (https://bdm.vic.gov.au). Birth: RIGG, Herbert William.

[75] Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/213702853/herbert-william-rigg : accessed 18 June 2022), memorial page for Herbert William Rigg (14 Feb 1896–1 Aug 1960), Find a Grave Memorial ID 213702853, citing Karrakatta Cemetery and Crematorium, Karrakatta, Nedlands City, Western Australia, Australia.

[76] Births, Deaths and Marriages Victoria (https://bdm.vic.gov.au). Birth: RIGG, Augustus Cornelius.

[77] Births, Deaths and Marriages Victoria (https://bdm.vic.gov.au). Birth: RIGG, Godfrey Edward.

[78] Births, Deaths and Marriages Victoria (https://bdm.vic.gov.au). Birth: RIGG, Alma Kathleen.

[79] Victoria Police Gazette, August 5, 1896. P.239.

[80] “Sale of Wokalup Estate”, The West Australian, Friday March 13th, 1903.  Online: https://trove.nla.gov.au

[81] Kalgoorlie Miner, p.4. Wednesday November 4 1925. Online: https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/93821394?searchTerm=con%20migro

[82] Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/190290069/morden-addison-rigg : accessed 18 June 2022), memorial page for Morden Addison Rigg (4 Jul 1904–14 Jan 1990), Find a Grave Memorial ID 190290069, citing Eltham Cemetery, Eltham, Nillumbik Shire, Victoria, Australia.

[83] Department of Justice, Births, Deaths and Marriages (https://bdm.justice.wa.gov.au). Birth. RIGG, Hugh. Accessed 1 June 2022.

[84] Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/233169212/hugh-rigg : accessed 18 June 2022), memorial page for Hugh Rigg (23 May 1908–13 Mar 1968), Find a Grave Memorial ID 233169212, citing Harvey Cemetery, Harvey, Harvey Shire, Western Australia, Australia ; Maintained by Belinda (contributor 49831110) .

[85] Department of Justice, Births, Deaths and Marriages (https://bdm.justice.wa.gov.au). Birth. RIGG, Margaret. Accessed 1 June 2022.

[86] Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/213233651/margaret-minnie_carthew-kerman : accessed 18 June 2022), memorial page for Margaret Minnie Carthew Kerman (1911–3 Dec 2002), Find a Grave Memorial ID 213233651, citing Pinnaroo Valley Memorial Park, Padbury, Joondalup City, Western Australia, Australia ; Maintained by woowoo (contributor 49949980) .

[87] “Gateway Descendants from Edward III”, Wikitree.com. Online: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Space:Gateway_Descendants_from_Edward_III

[88] Rigg, A. “Herbert William Rigg (1870-1943)”, Wikitree.com. Online: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Rigg-914

[89] Davies, E.J. “A Descent of Tony Blair from James V, King of Scots”, The Genealogist, Vol. 22, No. 2 (Fall 2008): Pp.247-255

[90] ibid

[91] ibid

[92] Charles in this case is a female’s name.

[93] Davies’ pedigree diverts to that of Tony Blair at this point, through John Ewart’s elder daughter, Jane (b.c1799-d.1830).