In 1889, the marriage of Deborah Borrodell to Richard Gartrell brought two farming families from the slopes of the mountain together.
Previously, Deborah’s father Henry Borrodell had immigrated to Australia from a farm in Essex England to take up a selection* at the end of Boree Lane near Borenore Caves. The pioneering surveyors had at the time called the district Sisters Rock after the limestone pillars dotting the landscape and looking for all the world like children walking hand in hand across the landscape. Ironically, Henry and his wife Eliza (nee Mortimer), proceeded at have nine daughters who played merrily on the limestone pillars at Sisters Rock. With a large family of girls, Henry thought himself the last surviving Borrodell.
On the other side of the family, the Gartrells arrived from Cornwall via California to take part in the gold mining history of Orange. Not making any fortune from the gold they turned their attention to fruit growing and dairying. No empires were established but some modest success followed.
Richard Gartrell turned to carpentry and built three very nice Federation homes for his father and two uncles before his untimely death from illness in 1903.
Richard Gartrell and Deborah Borrodell had three children when Richard died, leaving the eldest son Harold Borrodell Gartrell to leave school at nine to work delivering telegrams to care for the family.
Harold fought in both of the Great Wars and created a number of enterprises before finally returning to the role of grower back at the original Borrodell property.
In 1926, Harold Borrodell Gartrell married Dorothy Weiley and together had six children, all raised on the Borrodell farm. Of the six children, the one named Harold Borrodell Gartrell immersed himself in that Borrodell farm and orchard.
When the suburbs reached out and claimed the land, Harold the second moved west a few kilometres and took up the current property.
Years later, in the early 1990’s, when Borry and Gaye were bringing a new approach to the property Borry bought in the early ‘60’s, to recognise the farming families that went before, they named it ‘Borrodell’, and ‘Sisters Rock’, the name that adorns the on-site restaurant. There are no free bottles of wine for working out what Borrys’ real name is!
*Selection referred to “free selection before survey” of crown land in some Australian colonies under land legislation introduced in the 1860s.