George Mackay

George was born in 1827 into a farming family who lived on the west coast of Scotland near the coastal settlement of Applecross.

His older brother Angus would inherit the farm, so George had to find something else to do, perhaps the army or the ministry? However, he learns about going overseas to start a life in the colonies and, along with his childhood friend Sophia, he decides to try his hand in New Zealand.

He marries Sophia Morling in 1848, just a few days before they set out for their new life overseas.

Sophia thinks George is handsome, but more importantly he is strong and resourceful characteristics that are required as a pioneer, and that helped him to build a house and make a home for Sophia and their firstborn son, Freddie.

Sadly, George was swept down the swollen river as he tried to cross it on horseback to get home. Even though Roy, his faithful dog, stayed by his side all night, he could not be saved, and his lifeless body was recovered the next day. His untimely death left Sophia on her own in a new land with a small child to raise.

George is buried in Marytown churchyard. Sophia planted one of his precious cedar trees next to his grave, where it is now growing into a fine specimen.

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