by Caroline Ruppe (nee Wild)
30 August 1817 – 30 August 2017 is the Bicentenary of the Wild family in Australia.
Two hundred years ago, Lieutenant John Wild, his wife Mary (nee Lynch), his son John Benton Wild (age 10) and step daughter Margaret Edwards (age 16) arrived at Sydney Cove on the ship “Lloyds”. John Wild was a soldier of the 48th Regiment of Foot (Northamptonshire Regiment). The Regiment had been sent from Cork, Ireland as part of the military peace-keeping efforts in the new colony. As happened with a number of his compatriots, at the end of his term when the 48th left Australia, bound for India, John Wild resigned his commission and stayed, receiving a land grant of 2000 acres at Werriberri Creek, The Oaks, which is near where the township of Camden is today.
Obviously very enamoured with her new country, Mary Wild wrote to her mother in Cork later in 1817, that the country was so fertile they had crops 3 times a year, and that they “fed peaches to the pigs”, which seemed to completely amaze her.
John and Mary built a homestead which they named “Vanderville”. Son John Benton lived at this home after his parents died, and with this wife Emmeline Gaudry (granddaughter of famous First Fleet couple, Henry Kable & Susannah Holmes) they had 13 children, and so began the Wilds in Australia. John Benton Wild became a member of the first Parliament of NSW in the Legislative Council as the Member for Camden.