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Australian Dictionary of Biography

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Rundle, Jeremiah Brice (1816–1893)

by G. P. Walsh

This article was published in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 6, (MUP), 1976

Jeremiah Brice Rundle (1816-1893), squatter, merchant and businessman, was born in Cornwall, England, son of Jeremiah Brice Rundle, farmer, and his wife Elizabeth, née White. He arrived in Australia about 1835 and by 1838 was a storekeeper at Murrurundi, New South Wales. In the depressed early 1840s Rundle survived and prospered by boiling down stock for tallow and foreclosing a number of mortgages on runs. Later he and R. C. Dangar (1817-1866) set up as merchants and commission agents, styled Rundle, Dangar & Co., Sydney, and Dangar & Co., London. In 1855 F. H. Dangar joined the firm which also included Edward Chapman: the partnership was dissolved on 31 March 1859. Rundle was also in partnership with Henry Richards, F. H. and H. C. Dangar at Brisbane.

In the 1850s Rundle held Doondi on the Balonne River, Yallaroi, in the Gwydir District and, in partnership with F. H. and R. C. Dangar, 600,000 acres (242,814 ha) at Walcha in the New England District. In September 1860 Rundle was on a deputation of pastoralists to the colonial secretary to procure a bill for the suppression of cattle stealing, and in November was appointed to the general committee of the New South Wales Constitutional Association. In 1864 with (Sir) John Robertson he was connected with attempts to set up an agricultural college. By 1867 he held over 490,000 acres (198,298 ha) in the Liverpool Plains and Bligh districts, over 240,000 acres (97,126 ha) in the Warrego country of Queensland and, in partnership with J. R. Young and J. L. Montefiore, 16,000 acres (6,475 ha) on the Darling Downs.

Examined before a Legislative Assembly committee in February 1878, Rundle criticized stock saleyard facilities in Sydney and supported the idea that new yards should be erected near Homebush and the abattoirs. In December 1881 he was appointed to the Legislative Council; though a frequent attender his only speech was a brief comment on the rabbit nuisance bill in 1883. Rundle was also a director and chairman of the Australian Joint Stock Bank, a director of the Sydney Meat Preserving Co. in 1870-93, the Moruya Silver Mining Co., and the United Fire and Marine Insurance Co. He was a magistrate for the City of Sydney, a trustee of the Victoria Club and one of the earliest members of the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron.

Aged 77, he died of cancer on 6 March 1893 at his residence, Pomeroy, Potts Point, survived by his wife Mary (d.1906), née Simond, whom he had married at St James's Church, Sydney, on 18 March 1848, and by four sons and two daughters of their eleven children. He was buried in the family vault in the Anglican section of Rookwood cemetery. His estate was sworn for probate at £62,884.

Select Bibliography

  • A. D. Fraser (ed), This Century of Ours (Syd, 1938)
  • Votes and Proceedings (Legislative Assembly, New South Wales), 1861, 2, 914, 1877-78, 2, 860
  • Town and Country Journal, 2 Apr 1870
  • Sydney Morning Herald, 9 Mar 1893.

Citation details

G. P. Walsh, 'Rundle, Jeremiah Brice (1816–1893)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 1976, accessed online 21 October 2020.

This article was first published in hardcopy in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 6, (MUP), 1976

View the front pages for Volume 6

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