William Marwick senior was born in Emneth England in 1833. In 1852 at the age of 18 William who had always been a wanderer decided to seek his fortunes elsewhere. The shores of the largely undeveloped lands of Australia and the lure of gold saw him board the good ship Sir Walter Raleigh in Plymouth arriving in Fremantle in June 1852.
Walking from Perth to York in a single day he commenced work for Mr Burges at Tipperary earning 20 pounds a year for the next seven years. Through this earnest attention to work he gradually acquired his own land and like so many other early pioneers in this district got his real start from the flourishing sandalwood industry. In addition to his expanding farming and sandalwood interests Mr Marwick moved into the carrying and coaching business. His company became known as Coolgardie Coaching Company and later changed to Cobb and Co. This Coaching Company provided services from coastal towns to the various gold fields in the State and profits from this productive pursuit were invested in building up vast land holdings in the York District.
Together with his four sons he farmed over 20,000 acres of prime Western Australian land. The property known as Red Swamp Hill situated 3 miles east of York was purchased in 1860 for the sum of 25 pounds and is still farmed by William’s descendants today. Always committed to breeding fine pedigree stock William travelled back to England in 1913 at the age of 80 years and returned with a boatload of some of the world’s finest rams.
Today the name of Marwick is synonymous with success and endeavour throughout this Avon District and beyond. In addition to farming interests members of the Marwick Family perform many public roles. The beautiful historic mansion Laurelville at the foot of Mt Brown has a long and proud association with the Marwick Family. Our immediate past York Shire President Gordon Marwick is a direct descendant of William Senior as well as being closely engaged in agriculture has contributed much to the advancement of York through his tireless work for the community. Jeremy, son of Pam and Gordon now farms some of the original land taken up by William Senior.