Macpherson family donates Lone Pine to Southern Highlands Botanic Gardens

COMMEMORATIVE TREE: SHBG Chairman Charlotte Webb with John and Gwen Macpherson.

COMMEMORATIVE TREE: SHBG Chairman Charlotte Webb with John and Gwen Macpherson.

The ANZAC spirit will live on in the Highlands thanks to a very special family. 

The Macpherson family of Bowral donated a Lone Pine to the Southern Highlands Botanic Gardens (SHBG) on March 9. 

John Macpherson had four uncles serve in World War 1, and kindly donated the tree to commemorate the fallen soldiers. 

On August 6 1915 the 1st Australian Infantry Division launched a major offensive at Plateau 400 on Gallipoli.

The ridges were originally with the Aleppo pine, but were later cleared to provide cover for the Turkish trenches, leaving just one, solitary pine. 

After the battle, Lance Corporal Benjamin Charles Smith, 3rd Battalion AIF, collected several pine cones from the branches used to cover the Turkish trenches.

He sent the cones home to his mother, in remembrance of his brother who died during the battle.

From one of these cones she sowed several seeds, and successfully raised two seedlings.

One of the trees was planted in Inverell where Benjamin and his brother had enlisted, and the other was planted at the Australian War Memorial. 

Bowral's Lone Pine.

Bowral's Lone Pine.

In December 2008 the tree injured severe damage after a storm. 

However, it was saved and more seeds were created. 

“The tree we donated really is a direct descendant from that Lone Pine in Gallipoli,” Mr Macpherson said. 

“This has been propagated from the tree which was planted at the Australian War Memorial from one of two cones brought home after WW1.”

Four of Mr Macpherson uncles fought in WW1, and two of which were ANZACs. 

Second Lieutenant Ewen Fergus Lord Macpherson enlisted on August 29 1914. Lordie, as he was affectionately known, served on the Gallipoli Peninsula until 1915 when he was admitted to hospital. He was later killed in action on August 10 1916. 

The Macpherson family with the newly planted tree.

The Macpherson family with the newly planted tree.

Second Lieutenant Jack Machattie Lord Macpherson was the sixth child of Ewan Fergus Macpherson and Genevieve Louisa Machattie, and the third of four brothers who served in the Great War.

Jack enlisted on April 4 1915, and served on the Gallipoli Peninsula in the area of Russell’s Top and Fatigue Gully until December when the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force withdrew and returned to Egypt via Mudros. 

Sergeant Randolph George Lord Macpherson was the second oldest of the four boys to serve in the Great War. Private Lachlan Charles Lord Macpherson was the youngest of the brothers to enlist. He was killed on August 29 1918 during the lead up to the Battle for Mont St Quentin/Peronne. 

Mr Macpherson said it was very special for he, and his family, to have a Lone Pine planted at the botanic gardens. 

“It’s a very important commemoration to these men and our family,” he said. 

“We are all very pleased to donate this tree to the Southern Highlands Botanic Gardens.”

SHBG chairman Charlotte Webb said the tree would become an important feature of the gardens. 

“This forms one of the first trees in really, what will become an area of remembrance,” she said. 

“I think it really is a significant introduction to the gardens and it’s lovely coming from such an important family as the Macphersons.” 


Discuss "Lone Pine planted in Bowral to commemorate fallen soldiers"

Please note: All comments made or shown here are bound by the Online Discussion Terms & Conditions.