Jenny Kleve, Phillie Kleve and their brother Bob Cochrane with the youngest of the Cochrane clan, two-month-old Ebony Cochrane, outside the family home near Marburg.
Jenny Kleve, Phillie Kleve and their brother Bob Cochrane with the youngest of the Cochrane clan, two-month-old Ebony Cochrane, outside the family home near Marburg. Sarah Harvey

Coal family marks 100 years

IN 1911 a Scottish coal miner and his wife arrived in Australia.

One hundred years later dozens of people came to their property outside Marburg to celebrate their trek.

A century after Charles and Agnes Cochrane emigrated to Australia, their children, grandchildren and down to a few great-great-grandchildren marked the huge impact the family had on the Rosewood region, and the anniversary of a century since the pair made the long trip across the ocean.

Since the couple moved to the region, to Cochrane clan has grown from just two to dozens of people.

The family home was built by Charles and Agnes when they moved to the property.

While they first turned to agriculture to make a living, Charles soon found himself back in the habit of his Scottish profession, working in the Walloon mines while prospecting for coal on his land.

By the 1940s the mine was at its peak and the Cochranes were employing 80 people and running seven shafts in the area.

Their company, Roughrigg, was named after a mine in Scotland and became a major part of the coal industry in the Ipswich region.

Three of the Cochrane's 14 (including three adopted) children were able to attend the reunion, including 92-year-old Jenny Kleve, her sister Phillie Kleve and brother Bob.

Bob's son Greg Cochrane, who owns the neighbouring property, said the family had a long and proud history in the region.

He said while the mine wasn't being used anymore, it had played a big part in the growth of the area.

"There is a lot of history on this land," he said.

"It might not look it now, but over the years there's been a hell of a lot happen here."

Ipswich councillor David Pahlke was in attendance, paying tribute to Jenny, Phillie and Bob as well as siblings John and Agnes who couldn't make the trip.

Cr Pahlke said he had a long relationship with the family and was proud to recognise their contribution to the region.

Charles Cochrane passed away in 1956 aged 74 while Agnes lived until 1968 before passing away at the age of 82.



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