St John's Churchyard
The St John's Churchyard was consecrated by Bishop William Grant Broughton on 12 March 1845. Spanning over 170 years it is a memorial to many of Canberra's pioneers and former residents.
Occupations of those buried here range over the years from sawyer, ploughman, shoemaker, shepherd, wheelwright, stonemason, farmer, grazier, printer, bricklayer, engine driver, public servant, surveyor, architect, military officer and Governor-General. It was closed in 1937 unless exclusive rights to a plot were held.
When exploring the Churchyard make sure you also visit the memorials and wall plaques inside St John's Church.
In July 1940 parishioners were shocked by the death of Lady Whiskard, the wife of the British High Commissioner to Australia. Her headstone in the St John's Churchyard was destroyed by vandals many years ago. Her family in the UK have paid for a new cross to be made which was installed in January 2015.
Margaret McDonald, who died in 1861, arrived in Sydney from Scotland in 1837 with her husband and family. Many of her descendants are buried nearby.
Flying Officer Francis Ewen, aged 27 years, lost his life when his aircraft crashed during the fly-past at the opening of the provisional Parliament house on 9th May 1927.
The Rev. Pierce Galliard Smith, aged 82 years, died in 1908, and his wife and two daughters were buried with him later. He was the rector of St John’s from 1855 to 1905, and faithfully served the large parish of St John’s, which extended from Gundaroo in the north, to Yass in the west, to Queanbeyan in the east, and beyond the Murrumbidgee in the south.
Edward Kendall Crace, aged 48 years, was the owner of Gungahlin, a large property in Ginninderra. He was drowned in 1892 when he was attempting to cross the flooded Ginninderra Creek. His family was buried in the same enclosure.
Marianne Campbell, aged 75 years, died in 1903. She was the wife of George Campbell, the fourth son of the founder of St John’s Church, Robert Campbell. George died in England in 1881, and Marianne returned to Duntroon. Members of her family are buried in this enclosure.
Philip Hardy, aged 81 years, died in 1983, and had been the president of the Yarrowlumla Shire Council. His ashes were interred in the same area as his family, who had settled at Uriarra in the 1850s.
Col. John Gibbes, aged 88 years, died in 1873, and his wife Elizabeth the following year. Col. Gibbes had served in the Napoleonic Wars and took up an appointment as Collector of Customs in Sydney in 1834. In 1859, he and his wife came to live with their son Augustus at Yarralumla.
Elijah Bambridge, aged 64 years, died in 1879 and his wife Eliza in 1911, and some of their descendents are buried in the same area.
Hugh Read, aged 56 years, died in 1894, and his wife Eliza (nee Shumack) in 1907. Their home was at Gundaroo, and some of their relatives are buried close by.
Henry Ernest Palmer, aged 24, died at 1877, after falling from his horse. He was a descendent of George Palmer, the first settler in Ginninderra.
Viscount Dunrossil, aged 67 years, died in 1961. He had been appointed Governor-General in 1960, and died after only one year in office. Viscountess Dunrossil returned to England, and after her death in 1983, her ashes were interred in the grave.