Agnes Greig, the daughter of John and Margaret Greig was born on the 15th November 1837 in Abbotshall, Fifeshire, Scotland. She immigrated to Sydney with her family in 1849. The Greigs arrived at Ballarat on 18th November 1854 after having walked for 3 days and 2 nights from Melbourne. Around a year later, at the time of the Eureka Battle, she was 16 years old. She lived in a tent near the stockade with her family and was said to have witnessed the rebellion. Her reminiscences are told in the book Eureka Reminiscences. She married William Franks in 1855, and a family followed of 4 girls and a boy.
Early goldfields’ reminiscences, such as those written by Agnes Franks afford excellent illustrations of the courage and fortitude with which women faced the discomforts and hardships of the digger’s life. Agnes had lived in what is now known as Rodier Street for fifty years, on the spot where she stood on December 3, 1854, terror-stricken, at the door of her father’s tent, and saw the beginning of the attack on the stockade. Agnes was known for her very good memory and keen powers of observation.
Agnes’ husband William died in 1887 and Agnes died in October 1906.
Agnes Franks is buried with her daughter Elizabeth in the Ballarat New Cemetery, Presbyterian A, Section 19, Grave 02.