Who was Nellie Payne?

Panel carved 1921, depicts the ship Emerald. ‘Gala Kirk’, Cranbrook, East Coast, Tasmania.


Kirk is a Scottish word meaning a church, or more specifically, the Church of Scotland.

Adam Amos (1774-1845), pioneer settler, was born on 4 March 1774 at Melrose, Scotland. In 1809 he moved with his wife Mary, née Tate, of Lauder, and their family to Wales. His brother John (1776-1848) accompanied them, and they leased farms at Hayscastle, Pembrokeshire, from George Meredith.

Adam prospered, and had accumulated capital of £1500 by 1820, when both brothers sailed for Van Diemen’s Land with Meredith. They arrived in March 1821 in the Emerald, and were advised to look for land on the unsettled east coast. Adam’s capital entitled him to a grant of 1000 acres (405 ha) which he located on the Swan River at Cranbrook, and called Gala.

The auld [is a Scottish word meaning old] was erected by the Amos family in 1845, their first minister being the Rev. Thomas Dove who had seen service previously on Flinder’s Island. He was stationed at Swansea in 1844 and died there in 1888. Services had first been held at Cranbrook in the old granary. In 1921 the centenary of the arrival of Adam Amos and his family was celebrated.

Mrs. Charles Payne (Nellie) carved a wooden panel on the front wall of the church depicting the ship ‘Emerald’ which brought the emigrants out from Scotland.

The Cranbrook homestead was destroyed by fire in 1858 but the ‘kirk’ and other buildings were saved. Near the church is the old cemetery where many of the Scottish pioneers of the east Coast are buried.