William Arnott was born on the 6th December 1827 in Pathhead, Fifeshire, Scotland to David Millie & Isabella Arnott. He was the first of 8 children.
He emigrated to Australia on the 17th February 1848, arriving in Sydney with his younger brother David, aboard the ship Sir Edward Parry from Scotland. Soon after their arrival in Sydney they travelled to Morpeth to be reunited with their parents and four siblings, who were residing in the Tamworth region, at Peels River.
They had remained in Scotland to complete their trade qualifications as bakers and confectioners and were now ready to explore the vast opportunities of the new colony.
The Arnott family went on to make a great contribution to Australia’s development and provided an example of hard work and entrepreneurial business activity for others to follow.
In addition, William Arnott and his wife were dedicated to the church and the community during their life. They committed much of their spare time to helping the needy and as such there are several plaques in the Hunter Valley commemorating this contribution.
Of the thousands of workers Arnott’s employed, details of their generosity have filtered down through employee’s relatives of the memories, heartfelt stories that are relayed to us nearly everyday.
This site is the only historic industrial site that the Arnott family used as a bakery and represents their origins in the area they settled, after arriving from Scotland. Many see this site as, if not the birthplace of the Arnott's Biscuits, at least a significant component of the company’s origins.
His life’s achievement was as the entrepreneur who built one of the largest biscuit companies in the world. An iconic Australian brand that is deemed the second most prestigious and well known trademark in Australia (the ABC logo is the first) by IP Australia.
William Arnott is the great, great, great grandfather of Stephen Arnott, owner of Morpeth Sourdough. Stephen, a 6th generation baker, is continuing his family tradition at the same bakehouse in Morpeth where William and his brother David ran their business during the 1860’s.
Share your Arnott’s stories, pictures or facts with us, we’d love to hear from you.