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O'Briens and O'Reillys of Moggill/Pullen Vale

Charles O'Brien and his wife Catherine (nee News) arrived in Moreton Bay in 1863, having sailed on the "Queen of the Colonies". He brought with them five children, one having been born during the trip. He had also sailed with his brothers William and James and their families. There were 17 O'Briens on the ship's passenger list. During the journey, the ship was reportedly fired upon as it left Britian by a US Confederate Steam Cruiser, the 'Alabama' in what was probably a case of mistaked indentity.  Later a lifeboat was sent ashore at Cape Moreton for a burial and became lost. Some survivors were eventually found at Caloundra

in 1868, Charles purchased four crown land allotments totaling nearly 300 acres on what is now: Moggill Rd between Pullen Pullen Creek and Grandview Rd; further along Grandview Road and at O'Briens Road and Lancing Street. (Lots 188, 237, 243 and 256), He also went on to purchase more property later. His brother James purchased land straddling what is now Vyner Street. (Lot 367)

Charles and Catherine built a homestead 'Stormont' and ended up with 11 children together. Catherine died after catching alight by the fireplace on 3 August 1902, at the age of 73 and Charles died three years later aged 96. At that time Brother, James was living in in Fig Tree Pocket and William in 'Brisbane' (Funeral notice for Charles, CM 3/6/1905)

Their Grand Daughter, Annie Agnus O'Brien married WW1 returned serviceman John Joseph O'Reilly and they operated a dairy farm on the original land at the corner of Moggill Road and Grandview Road. They donated two and a half acres in the early 1950s for a Catholic Church, named St Catherines after Grandmother, Catherine O'Brien.

At the time of writing, a grandson of Annie O'Reilly and Great Great Grandson of Charles O'Brien still lives on a part of the original farm land

Barn from O'Reillys farm

The barn built on John and Annie O'Reilly's farm still remains today (view from Moggill Rd, 2014).
Photo: Mark Todd

This information was compiled by Mark Todd, from the following sources:
O'Brien family on Rootschat URL:; viewed 11 March 2014
Mud Maps of Moggill by Libby Wager, 1988.
National Library of Australia: Trove digitized newspaper collection. URL: