Fords of Katandra

Victoria Australia

   Francis Thomas FORD
Married to Mary Kingston HARCOURT-

7th child of Joseph Herbert FORD & Mary Florence JAMES
grandchild of Thomas FORD & Eliza Ann BATE

Photo below
Frank & Mary Ford
1930's, possibly taken in Devenish, Victoria



Colin Francis 1935-2002
Living Female 19xx
Living Female 19xx
Living Male 19xx
Living Male 19xx
NAME Francis Thomas FORD (Frank)
FATHER Joseph Herbert FORD 
MOTHER Mary Florence FORD (nee JAMES) 
BIRTH DATE 20 May 1912
BIRTH PLACE Town, Victoria, Australia
SIBLINGS         Florence Ruby (Ruby) 1899-1980
Joseph Victor 1901-1977
Myrtle Eliza 1902-1994
Caroline May (Carrie) 1904-1980
Ivy Jane 1907-1994
Henry William 1909-1949
Philip 1914-2001
Lemuel Batey (Lem) 1917-1997
Norman 1919-1994
EDUCATION Katandra State School No.1965
Master Builder
MARRIAGE DATE 2 March 1935
MARRIAGE PLACE St Augustine Church
Shepparton, Victoria
DEATH DATE 12 January 2009
DEATH PLACE Ashmore, QLD, Australia
BURIAL DATE 16 January 2009
BURIAL PLACE Allambe Gardens Cemetery
Rose Garden No 5, Site 376A
Nerang, QLD, Australia.
KNOWN RESIDENCES   Katandra, Victoria 1912-1935
Devenish, Victoria 1935-1945
Benalla, Victoria 1945-1946
Charles Street, Benalla 1947
56 Bridge Street, Benalla 1948-1969
Gold Coast QLD 1969-1979
Unit 3, 9 Riverview Parade,
Surfers Paradise QLD

Photo to the right
Frank Ford
4 years & 7 months old
Christmas 1916
(Frank in irons due to required immobilisation as a consequence of tuberculosis in the hip joint)





Family Memories

Frank was born in 1912 on May 20 to parents Joseph Herbert and Florence.  They were farmers in the Katandra locality not far from Shepparton in north-central Victoria.
Typical of the times, the family was large.  Joseph and Florence had 10 children.  Frank was their 7th child - their third of 6 sons.
Frank's first decade in life featured events, which were to become the topic of frequent recall in his later life.  He contracted tuberculosis of the hip, which at the beginning of the 20th century, had no cure.  After several years of hospitalisation in Melbourne and convalescence at home with homespun remedies, he survived and began to flourish.  This alone possibly assists in understanding Frank's inner qualities that were echoed during his adult life.
Frank left the farm at the age of 18 and became active building mostly farmyard constructions in the neighbouring districts.  Times were hard in the 1930's but that did not hinder his progress.  In his early 20's, he married Mary Harcourt from Devenish - a nearby farming community.
Frank and Mary settled on Devenish where Colin, Living daughter and Living daugher were added to the partnership.  Later, after the second world war, they moved to Benalla where Living son and Living son were to complete the family.
The 30-odd years in Benalla featured Frank's ongoing activities in building, which grew to include residential and commercial buildings. A joinery factory was established primarily to feed the material demands of the building activity and it too grew to serve the wider community.
Frank and Mary took time off in 1955 to spend 9 months travelling around Europe and America.  They caught the travel bug and numerous trips overseas to Asia, England and North America followed.
Further, a farm was acquired near Benalla and, in a swing back to his early days, time and effort was channelled into farming and time for building diminished.   This was Frank's 'tree-change' of sorts so that working for a living involved less stress.
Then followed the 'sea-change' in the mid 60's.  Frank and Mary moved to the Gold Coast where they remained for over 4 decades.  They built friendships and continued with their penchant for travel.  They kept good health and enjoyed life.
Mary passed away in 1999 and this was a substantial loss for Frank as Mary was an enduring force in the partnership. Frank lived on a further 9 years reflecting his ardent love of life and that inner strength that prevailed 90 years earlier.  If longevity describes the broader family roots, Frank exemplified this as he lived to a family-best age of 96 years.
One of Frank's nephews visited them annually in Queensland and he made the following comments:-

"Frank really had a great life.  Every time we visited him, he gave the impression of contentment plus satisfaction with where he'd been and what he'd done.  His death has the significance of the end of his generation - the last of the ten.  They were a varied lot but nevertheless did great credit to Joseph Herbert and Flo.  From very simple beginnings, their brood has left a permanent mark and I'm sure the world is a better place as the result of their passage thru' it.  I value the contacts I had with Frank over a period of many years and will always remember how proud he was of his achievements.  He gave the appearance of a person who did not live with regrets."



ffmf Frank & Mary Ford
London 1955

For more photos of Frank, Mary and his siblings click here.