The Reed family originated in Staffordshire, England. James Reed was born about 1810 in Trenton, a son of Thomas Reed. He joined the military in 1827 and was posted to Sunderland. Two years later he met and married Frances Heazel who was a daughter of Sergeant-Major Benjamin Heazel The young couple's first child (John Benjamin Reed) was born in Belfast on 6 June 1830.
A second son (James) was born before the family, in 1836, embarked with his unit on the Earl Grey for garrison duty in Tasmania.
By January 1837 the family was in Sydney. Several more children followed and eventually James left the military and became a policeman.
In 1862 the whole Reed family moved to Bourke in far-west NSW where five more generations of our family were born. Other branches of the Reed family remain in Bourke to this day, probably the longest continuous association of any European family with that area of NSW.
Frances Reed (nee Heazel) died in 1895 and her husband James died three years later. They occupy one of the most prominent and well-kept graves in the historic Bourke cemetery.
The following family stories are relevant to the Reed family.