Descendants grateful, concerned about family crypt discovery

7th December 2017 1:05 PM
Narelle Radunt discusses the discovery of the crypt belonging to her great-great uncle Joseph Fleming at the Ipswich General Cemetery. Narelle Radunt discusses the discovery of the crypt belonging to her great-great uncle Joseph Fleming at the Ipswich General Cemetery. Hayden Johnson

THE descendants of a politician located in a rare underground crypt in Ipswich are reluctant to support its excavation, but grateful their family mystery has been solved.

Located at the cemetery under several metres of dirt is the crypt of Joseph Fleming - one of Queensland's first politicians.

After Mr Fleming's death in 1891 a significant vault was built for him and wife, Phoebe.

Documents and recent investigations by the council solved a mystery that affected Mr Fleming's family for decades; the location of his burial.

About 126 years since Mr Fleming's body was put in the crypt, Narelle Radunt sits at the timber table of her Tivoli home, reflecting on the life of her great-great uncle.

"Nobody actually knew where he was buried and my father thought he was buried at Pine Mountain so they went out there and did a good search but couldn't find anything,” she said.

"We're grateful, all the family because we're Australia wide, that someone has actually found him and her at last.”

RELATED: 'Rare' crypt containing a politician discovered at Ipswich

The discovery of the crypt and attention it received produced a mixed reaction for Mrs Radunt.

As the council considers what to do with the discovery, Mr Fleming's great-great niece was excited the crypt had been found, but was concerned about its future.

Up to $50,000 could be allocated by the council to progress an archaeological dig.

"I really don't know what to think about it,” Mrs Radunt said.

"One of my brothers wasn't happy about it, he wanted to leave it as is.

"I don't know what their plans are.”

Narelle Radunt discusses the discovery of the crypt belonging to her great-great uncle Joseph Fleming at the Ipswich General Cemetery.
Narelle Radunt discusses the discovery of the crypt belonging to her great-great uncle Joseph Fleming at the Ipswich General Cemetery. Hayden Johnson

The life, achievement and location of Mr Fleming was a regular topic of chatter when his descendants gathered each festive season.

This Christmas the family has been given the gift of closure.

"We thank the people that found it, now that mystery is solved there is no more mystery,” Mrs Radunt said.