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Tasmania's third oldest home, stable to notorious bushranger Martin Cash, hits market

Tasmania's third oldest home, stable to notorious bushranger Martin Cash, hits market
Tasmania's third oldest home, stable to notorious bushranger Martin Cash, hits market

The third oldest house in Tasmania will go up for auction on February 1, 2014. The 1813 home, ‘Montrose’ on 76 Montrose Road, gave its name to the suburb.

Constructed by Scottish immigrant Robert Littlejohn, who is noted to be a botanist, painter and teacher, and who named the house, it was later extended by politician, member of the legislative council, and lawyer Thomas Horne with a Georgian flavour to the second storey with iron roof. This section is circa 1830.

The original wing includes convict brick, Blackwood and Huon pine floors, as well as original windows and a handmade shingled ceiling.

Littlejohn named the home after his ‘back home’ property on Scotland’s east coast, and records from first fleet wills note that it was referred to as ‘Montrose Estate’.

An older listing notes that the current sizable laundry was the original cooking area.

The property is on 4,800 square metres, and includes a 105 year old bay tree. It has a price guide of $575,000 to $625,000.

“Over the years the property has been modernised and renovated and at one stage it was a Bed and Breakfast, while today it is utilised as a family home,” said selling agent Stuart Whyment, LJ Hooker Glenorchy.

The property has five-bedrooms, each with an ensuite, and it has been used as a bed and breakfast in the past even though currently it is used as a home.

The house also features a study and a library with built-in bookshelves.

“This property abounds with original features, such as a handsome Blackwood staircase, huon pine and Blackwood flooring, convict brickwork plus a very special long dining room with the original hand cut shingle ceiling,” said Whyment.

“While retaining its historic feel, the house has been updated significantly with a modern kitchen with granite bench tops and a top of the range gas cooker. All the bathrooms are updated and there is built-in heating throughout.”

The original stable block with six stables and a workshop is still on the site, and it is rumoured that the colonial bushranger Martin Cash would stable his horse at the site for a quick getaway.

It last sold for $330,000 in January 2002, and was marketed back in October 2010 asking for offers over $790,000, according to RP Data.

Design and Art Australia Online notes that Littlejohn came to Tasmania onboard The Ocean.

Thomas Horne, however, from Chiswick, Middlesex in England, arrived on The William in 1830.

His history is somewhat colourful, being the editor of The Colonist – for the malcontents – and regularly speaking out against the government and leading actions against them. His speculative nature led him to debt, with records showing he sold his grant at Cape Portland, purchasing lots at Battery Point and Glenorchy.

Due to increasing debts, he then took a role as solicitor-general in 1841. He then looked to resign to the Lieutenant-Governor Sir Eardley Wilmot to claim benefits from the Insolvent Act.

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jduke@propertyobserver.com.au

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke was a property writer at Property Observer

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