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John McGarvie, a Presbyterian minister and graduate of the University of Glasgow, was selected by J. D. Lang (q.v.) to come to New South Wales as minister for the church at Portland Head, on the Hawkesbury River, and arrived in New South Wales in May 1826. About 1829, McGarvie began contributing biographical articles and poetry (published under various pseudonyms) to the Sydney Gazette. McGarvie, whose brother William was one of the original proprietors of the Sydney Herald, also contributed editorials and lead articles for that newspaper for some years. McGarvie was active within the church, founding a second Sydney Presbyterian congregation in 1832, and he was also involved in Lang's educational endeavours. A volume of his sermons was published by Kemp and Fairfax in 1842.