Eric Fox and Rose and Con O’Brien recreated Pastor Matthews’ journey to Warwick 150 years ago.
Eric Fox and Rose and Con O’Brien recreated Pastor Matthews’ journey to Warwick 150 years ago. Shannon Newley

Following in footsteps

ONE hundred and fifty years ago, when Pastor James Matthews walked from Brisbane to Warwick, he would have had no idea that one day his descendents would be making the same journey.

Rose O'Brien was among family members who made the trip - albeit in a little more style, riding in a BMW - and said it was gratifying to walk (or drive) in her great-great-grandfather's footsteps.

"We went right up the range and visited all of the places he stayed along the way," she said.

"We saw every place he went to and we started exactly when he started 150 years ago to the day."

Helen Lees, formerly of Yangan, was another descendant who paid tribute to the Warwick legend during the past few days and she said it was great to be back in the area.

"It's lovely to be here because I grew up here and I still call Yangan my hometown," she said.

Mrs Lees said the family had always studied their origins and had many records dating right back to Pastor Matthews' time.

"The Matthews family took lots of photos and the family has always had that connection," she said.

When asked what Pastor Matthews would have thought about being remembered by his family so long after his journey to Warwick, Mrs Lees said she thought he would be very pleased.

"It would be very gratifying for him," she said.

"He donated land and was involved in the design of the original rectory here."

While a contingent of seven people came to Warwick to commemorate Paster Matthews' walk, there was large family reunion held in Brisbane that included a visit to his grave.



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