The History of Wyobie
James Tyson (1819-1898)

Chris Ashton in the Wambo book —

"Wyobie stands out as one of the 5 Darling Downs sheep stations owned by one of the most powerful pastoralists of his day — Jimmy Tyson. Tyson was 9 when his father died and the stuff of legend. In his time took a job as an overseer on a nearby farm with an annual salary of £30. Over time he became a shrewd judge of land, livestock and men. When he died in 1898, 78 year old Tyson left no instructions for the dispersal of his assets valued on probate at £2,300,000. 30 years after Tyson died Samuel Taylor bought Wyobie."

Zita Denholm — T.Y.S.O.N. and Tyson's Outback

"Wyobie was purchased in 1877-78 by James Tyson in his own name at after-survey auctions. He installed his nephew John Tyson Doneley there for a time as manager, fenced it and raised sheep. Wyobie was freehold purchased at auction. By 1887, Tyson owned the largest area of freehold land in Queensland — 229,748 acres. Tyson — Australia's first native born millionaire was pastoralist, canny investor, member Queensland Legislative Council and donor to a wide range of government and private causes.
In some quarters he was seen as eccentric, though in others his habits were recognised simply as prudent in a man not born to wealth. He spent his childhood in poverty and his young manhood in seasonal and contract employment. In 1845, 3 brothers moved to the Lachlan, very likely without a run, cattle or capital. For the next 4 years, James and John spent almost all of their time on the road buying cattle for themselves and contract droving for neighbours. With the discovery of gold at Bendigo, Tyson men saw a market to be supplied. James became a knowing drover and shrewd dealer, moving up into those northern areas of NSW which would become Queensland They sold their business in Bendigo after 4 years. James and John purchased 3 stations near Deniliquin. John died in 1860 and James was sole beneficiary of his will. James moved back to the Lachlan (Toorong, Tupra and Juanbung) and the land became freehold. James lived at Juanbung 1862-1865. In 1865 acquired Heyfield in Gippsland which was fattening country close to Melbourne. In 1868, he acquired his first property in Queensland and Tinnenburra was begun. Beasts were taken from there to the Lachlan to be grown and later moved to Heyfield and then Melbourne. 2.1 million acres to supply cattle to southern operations. It had the largest shearing shed in the land — owned by an Australian son of a convict. By the early 1890's the trend to sheep for wool was well established.
Tyson obtained clear title to the Felton property (after acting as mortgagee) in 1872. Felton was 160,000 acres (24,000 freehold) and he decided to make it his home base. After Tyson's death it had shrunk to 86,000 acres but it was all freehold. Produced grain and wool and fattened cattle from Tinnenburra and later by central Queensland properties. Wyobie was purchased outright in 1877 when part of the Jimbour run was resumed for closer settlement. It was 48,710 acres and was managed by a Tyson nephew and used for the production of wool and fat lambs.
Tyson bought all Kelman's (who was indebted to Tyson) properties in 1887. Kelman was a Central Queensland pastoralist with extensive runs backing into the Carnarvon Ranges and onto the Northern Territory border. Meteor Downs (30,000 acres freehold), Albinia Downs, Babbiloora, Carnarvon, Swanvale and Glenmoriston were lease holdings. Managers were installed.
In 1875 sugar growing country on the Logan was purchased. This was later sold and in 1880 land near Tully was acquired to produce sugar and cattle.
When he died at Felton in 1898 he left no will. The properties were sold between 1899 and 1906. Sales in excess £3,000,000. The enterprises begun 50 years earlier begun with not much more than intelligence, determination and a few head of cattle and a good eye for country. "

Chris Ashton in Wambo

"Tyson never employed a clerk. Apart from a notebook, he committed every detail of his business dealings to memory. Everything he acquired from trading in pastoral properties was reinvested in new properties. He never married. To his critics he was always Hungry Tyson, hard in business and hard on men. Others insisted he would help anyone who asked him for work."

Arnold Williams in his book states that an 1881 map of the Wambo area shows many of the blocks as being owned by members of the squatter's families and a large group of neighbouring blocks in the Jimbour area were owned by James Tyson

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