Category Archives: Shipping/Immigration

The General Hewitt – Portland Bay 1856

When I read pioneer’s obituaries, a ship comes up time and again, the General Hewitt.  The ship, also called the General Hewett, was a convict ship and later an immigrant ship, sailing to Moreton Bay in 1854 .  The voyage I will focus on was to Portland Bay in  1856.  And what a voyage it was.

On May 5, 1856 the Geelong Advertiser’s correspondent in London wrote:

LONDON. (1856, July 16). Geelong Advertiser and Intelligencer (Vic. : 1851 - 1856), p. 2 Edition: DAILY. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article93142901

LONDON. (1856, July 16). Geelong Advertiser and Intelligencer (Vic. : 1851 – 1856), p. 2 Edition: DAILY. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article93142901

The General Hewitt left Plymouth, England on July 5, 1856 and arrived at Portland on October 9, 1856.   Many of  the passengers would become some of the finest pioneers of the Western District and the South-East of South Australia and beyond.  A mix of English, Scottish and Irish, the passengers were described as being “of a very useful and eligible class”

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The General Hewitt also carried much needed supplies from the home country, whiskey, brandy, gin and champagne.  There was also some practical cargo such as clothing and haberdashery, garden seeds and glassware.

SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1856, October 13). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567020

SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1856, October 13). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567020

The single females from the ship were available to hire from £15 to £26 for a domestic.  Married couples could be employed at a rate of £40-£45 .  While most of the immigrants were “suitable” there were some crew members that were not, resulting in an eventful voyage, with a mutiny attempt no less.

DOMESTIC INTELLIGENCE. (1856, October 13). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567019

DOMESTIC INTELLIGENCE. (1856, October 13). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567019

The drama did not stop once the ship arrived at Portland Bay.  Four crew members, left the ship on a raft.  Ten others had been locked up and five on the ship were refusing to work.

POLICE COURT. (1856, October 17). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567053

POLICE COURT. (1856, October 17). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567053

On October 14, the two men accused with assault , William Jose and Joseph Barrow appeared in the Portland Police Court, as did the 10 men refusing duty.  Their names included Able Seamen  Millard, Gash, Parry, Gudridge, Gashar and Howson the sail maker.  They received four months hard labour.

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POLICE COURT. (1856, October 15). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567037

POLICE COURT. (1856, October 15). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567037

The General Hewitt’s arrival was kept the Police Court busy.  On October 15, one of the immigrants, Henry Haley appeared for being found in the Government Immigration Depot without permission.  Four more crewmen appeared for refusing duty, Daniel Newbury, Joseph Steel, George Rumbellow and William Dowell.  Their sentences ranged from 12 weeks to four months imprisonment.

The trial of William Jose and Joseph Barrow for the assault on Captain Christopher H. Loutitt continued.

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POLICE COURT. (1856, October 17). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567053

POLICE COURT. (1856, October 17). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567053

Advertising. (1856, October 17). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 3 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567048

Advertising. (1856, October 17). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876), p. 3 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567048

The General Hewitt was already low on crew when, on November 7, two more absconded, the steward, William Thomas an John Carroll the cook.  They had the diggings in their sights, but instead they ended up digging roads.

POLICE COURT. (1856, November 10). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567197

POLICE COURT. (1856, November 10). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 – 1876), p. 2 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64567197

A Police Constable kept watch on board the General Hewitt to  prevent any more crew jumping ship.  Captain Loutitt travelled to Melbourne in search of more crew.

SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1856, November 27). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1956), p. 4. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article7140721

SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1856, November 27). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1956), p. 4. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article7140721

Sixty-two years after the arrival of the General Hewitt, the death of John. S Andrew aka John Forster, brought to light more about the crew of the General Hewitt.  John Andrew was a crew member that bolted, ending up at Muntham near Casterton, were he remained for the rest of his life.  According to John’s obituary, other men of the district that were members of the crew included Messers Rooking and Gasperino.

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Passed Away. (1918, October 10). The Casterton News and the Merino and Sandford Record (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 3 Edition: Bi-Weekly.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article74222260

Passed Away. (1918, October 10). The Casterton News and the Merino and Sandford Record (Vic. : 1914 – 1918), p. 3 Edition: Bi-Weekly.. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article74222260

The obituary of William Rooking outed by John Andrew as an escaped crewmen

OBITUARY. (1901, June 14). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article73027645

OBITUARY. (1901, June 14). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 – 1954), p. 3. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article73027645

Now to the passengers.  As I’m currently tied to home, I didn’t think I could get access to the General Hewitt’s passenger list, so I thought I would find some of the passengers using Trove and a bit of Googling followed by a cross check with the PROV Online Shipping records.  While I did not come close to the “363 souls” on board, I did find around 70. Some of  those continued to live in the Western District or just across the border in the South East of South Australia.

Then, a need to double cross check  and a feeling of guilt about omitting the other 290 or so passengers, I thought I would give Ancestry.com.au a go.  Using the Victoria, Australia , Assisted and Unassisted Passenger Lists 1839-1923, I searched with General Hewitt in the Keywords field and the year 1856 and the list came up.  Early excitement faded rapidly when I realised the work another 290 names was going to bring and the transcribing of the passenger list was far from perfect.  The Cameron family had become the Cameau family, to name just one discrepancy.

As I’ve pottered away on this post for a few weeks, I have decided to just feature those passengers that had their voyage on the General Hewitt mentioned in their obituaries, plus a couple of others I found on the Glenelg and Wannon Settlers site.  Maybe, one day when I am stuck for something to do, I may start working my way through the other “souls” and share them with you.

ARTHUR, JOHN & PHILLIPPA   – John and Phillippa Arthur did not stay in Victoria long after their arrival, moving to Callington about 60 kilometres east of Adelaide. PROV Passenger List Index:  http://tinyurl.com/c8a8jfj

OBITUARY. (1912, August 3). Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 - 1954), p. 42. Retrieved February 27, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article88699759

OBITUARY. (1912, August 3). Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 – 1954), p. 42. Retrieved February 27, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article88699759

ELIAS AND JOHN BATESON:  Elias and John from Cambridgeshire took up work with Edmund Kirby (father of John Kirby) at “Spring Bank” near Sandford. PROV Passenger Index: http://tinyurl.com/am9k8f7

BEST FAMILY:  William and Letitia  Best and their family of seven children were from County Cavan, Ireland and settled at Heywood.   PROV record – http://tinyurl.com/c2l5ekh

The obituaries of three of the children follow:

John was 20 at the time of his arrival at Portland.

First Issue, August 20, 1842. (1907, October 14). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63967003

First Issue, August 20, 1842. (1907, October 14). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63967003

Margaret Best married James Bell a member of another of Heywood’s pioneering families.

OBITUARY. (1933, September 18). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 3 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64283449

OBITUARY. (1933, September 18). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 3 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64283449

Letitia Best married Donald Rankin.  After her marriage she lived in Harrow, Western Australia and Heywood.

OBITUARY. (1941, August 25). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64401403

OBITUARY. (1941, August 25). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64401403

COULSON FAMILY – Christopher and Mary Frances Coulson were originally from Yorkshire and later London.  They sailed on the General Hewitt with their four children aged 4 to 14 .  I have previously written about Christopher in the post  I Wish I Were Related To Christopher Coulson.  One of their sons, Francis married my ggg aunt, Harriet Martha Diwell, daughter of William and Margaret.  PROV Passenger Index:  http://tinyurl.com/babw5x2

The obituary of Christopher Coulson Snr.

PERSONAL. (1904, July 28). The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1889 - 1931), p. 6. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article4991780

PERSONAL. (1904, July 28). The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1889 – 1931), p. 6. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article4991780

Passed Away. (1916, April 10). The Casterton News and the Merino and Sandford Record (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 3 Edition: Bi-Weekly. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article74485266

Passed Away. (1916, April 10). The Casterton News and the Merino and Sandford Record (Vic. : 1914 – 1918), p. 3 Edition: Bi-Weekly. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article74485266

BREEZE FAMILY:  Or is it the Breese family?  As listed on the PROV Index, Thomas and Ann Breeze and their children were aboard the General Hewitt.  However the following letter indicates their name have been Breese.  PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/avj5sse

The letter is from William G. Breese, son of Thomas and Ann.  William was just seven when he arrived at Portland Bay, but 73 years later he was able to recount the voyage particularly the attempted mutiny.

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Nautical History. (1929, April 18). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64269148

Nautical History. (1929, April 18). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64269148

DWYER, EDMOND – I am yet to find the fate of the General Hewitt , however Edmond Dwyer’s obituary states the ship was destroyed by fire after one more trip to Australia.  The General Hewitt did make one other trip to Australia landing at  Port Adelaide in 1858.

Edmond’s obituary is also useful in that it mentions other passengers on the ship  – the Heaneys and Messers Roulston and Waters.  I can find each of these passengers but I cannot find a passenger under the name of Cannon he mentions.

There were three other Dwyers on the General Hewitt, but I have not been able to find if they are linked to Edmond.  They were:  Catherine (22), Johanna (27), Denis (29)

PROV record http://tinyurl.com/azt5jac

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Obituary. (1930, March 20). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64291851

Obituary. (1930, March 20). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64291851

HADDEN, David and Mary –   Listed on the Passenger list as Haddon, David and settled in the Carapook area.  PROV Link http://tinyurl.com/asvck8q

HEANEY, Robert and Jane – From Ireland, Robert and Jane pioneered at Condah for 52 years.  PROV Link http://tinyurl.com/a5rgakf

Infections Diseases in Animals. (1890, August 20). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63629135

Infections Diseases in Animals. (1890, August 20). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63629135

Passing of the Pioneers. (1920, February 5). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 3 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64020779

Passing of the Pioneers. (1920, February 5). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 3 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved February 26, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64020779

LAVERY Family:    Patrick and Rose and children Ann, Mary and Bernard were from County Armagh, Ireland.   PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/ba6juo3

Patrick and Rose celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary in 1900.

SOCIAL. (1900, February 27). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 - 1954), p. 1. Retrieved March 7, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article75063691

SOCIAL. (1900, February 27). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 – 1954), p. 1. Retrieved March 7, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article75063691

Obituary of Patrick Lavery.

OBITUARY. (1905, November 24). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved February 27, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72818770

OBITUARY. (1905, November 24). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 – 1954), p. 3. Retrieved February 27, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72818770

Rose Lavery passed away only days before her fellow General Hewitt shipmate, Mary Lear (below).

OBITUARY. (1903, August 11). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved March 7, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72841100

OBITUARY. (1903, August 11). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 – 1954), p. 3. Retrieved March 7, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72841100

LEAR FAMILY:  Thomas and Mary and their children William, Thomas and Mary were from Devon, England.  They had another seven children after their arrival.  PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/cdeuklp

There was a “take two” with Thomas Lear’s obituary.  The Gymbowen correspondent wrote an obituary published in the Horsham Times on February 18, 1919.  The issue of February 21, 1919 set a few facts straight.

Obituary. (1919, February 18). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 - 1954), p. 5. Retrieved March 8, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72993062

Obituary. (1919, February 18). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 – 1954), p. 5. Retrieved March 8, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72993062

Obituary. (1919, February 21). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 - 1954), p. 4. Retrieved March 9, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72993152

Obituary. (1919, February 21). The Horsham Times (Vic. : 1882 – 1954), p. 4. Retrieved March 9, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article72993152

 McCABE, John and Mathilda:  John and Mathilda, from Ireland, had 10 children after their arrival in Victoria.  They settled in the Sandford district.    PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/d785kzx

McLACHLAN, Mary and Alexander :  The interesting thing about Mary McLachlan’s obituary, that appeared in many newspapers, is that it names her as a passenger on the General Hewitt, with her son.  However I can find Alexander on the passenger list but not Mary.  PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/d39sg4u

PERSONAL. (1900, January 15). The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1889 – 1931), p. 4. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article29526830

Alexander passed away only six months after his mother.

MR. A. MACLACHLAN. (1900, June 27). Border Watch (Mount Gambier, SA : 1861 - 1954), p. 2. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article81040451

MR. A. MACLACHLAN. (1900, June 27). Border Watch (Mount Gambier, SA : 1861 – 1954), p. 2. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article81040451

McCANN, PETER AND JANE and MARY SMITH McCANN:  Peter and Jane were from Ireland and settled around Sandford.  Mary Smith McCANN also sailed with Peter and Jane.  I am not sure if she was a daughter of the couple as she was six, Peter was 22 and Jane was 30.   PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/botobco

McFARLANE FAMILY:  Andrew and Jane and children George, Elizabeth, Margaret and unnamed infant.  The McFarlanes did not linger in Victoria very long, moving first to Sydney and later Brisbane.  Their first child born after they moved to Queensland was the first child born in Queensland after its proclamation.  PROV Index http://tinyurl.com/c3kx3dk

PASSING OF THE PIONEERS. (1913, December 20). The Queenslander (Brisbane, Qld. : 1866 - 1939), p. 238. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article22219423

PASSING OF THE PIONEERS. (1913, December 20). The Queenslander (Brisbane, Qld. : 1866 – 1939), p. 238. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article22219423

The McFarlanes also offer a lesson:  Even though a person/s disembarked in a particular port, it does not mean they stayed in that general area or even that state.  The McFarlane’s made it from Victoria to Queensland after only two years in the Australia.

MACKINNON, Lachlan:  Lachlan MacKinnon, originally from Argyllshire, Scotland, arrived with his wife and frankly, proving he was on the General Hewitt has almost done my head in.  He does not come up in a search on the PROV Index, in fact no MacKinnons do.  There are McKinnons that sailed on the General Hewitt, but no Lachlans.

Looking to the Ancestry.com.au index, there was a Lachlan McKenzie and several other McKenzies with christian names the same as the McKinnons found on the PROV Index.  The PROV Index has no McKenzies arriving in 1856.  Given the aforementioned dependencies at Ancestry, do I assume the McKenzies are McKinnons and the Lachlan McKinnon listed is really Lachlan MacKinnon?

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OBITUARY. (1906, September 5). Border Watch (Mount Gambier, SA : 1861 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article77583891

OBITUARY. (1906, September 5). Border Watch (Mount Gambier, SA : 1861 – 1954), p. 3. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article77583891

 

McKINNON FAMILY:  John and Catherine and their children PROV Index  http://tinyurl.com/bn45olf 

NEATE FAMILY:  James and Anne and children Margaret, Julia, Emily, Henry, Albert and Catherine.  PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/ad5l7hu

No Title. (1909, May 19). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 3 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 17, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63988049

No Title. (1909, May 19). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 3 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 17, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63988049

POLAND, William and Eliza.  William and Eliza arrived in Portland with an infant and went on to have another six children and became two of Portland’s best known pioneers.  William esd the manager of “Burswood” owned by Edward Henty.  PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/clrhd58

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First Issue, August 20, 1842. (1912, October 18). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64003159

First Issue, August 20, 1842. (1912, October 18). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64003159

 

ROULSTON, ROBERT AND JOSEPH:  Trying to pin down Robert and Joseph was difficultEdmond Dwyer mentioned the Roulstons as shipmates and name being well known in the Condah district.  There were also Roulstons at Heywood and I found a reference to that family and the Heaney’s (above).  The Heaney family lived in Heywood for 10 years after arriving on the General Hewitt then moved north to Condah.  Robert and Joseph appear on the PROV Index as Roulstone: http://tinyurl.com/az4b9mt

Heywood's Pioneers. (1938, September 29). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 5 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64280358

Heywood’s Pioneers. (1938, September 29). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 5 Edition: EVENING.. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64280358

 

STARK, JAMES AND ELIZABETH :  Newlyweds James and Elizabeth spent their first years in Australia at Penola, South Australia before moving to Lake Mundi near Casterton.  PROV Index http://tinyurl.com/d8n7h6t

OBITUARY. (1917, April 28). Border Watch (Mount Gambier, SA : 1861 - 1954), p. 5. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article77664546

OBITUARY. (1917, April 28). Border Watch (Mount Gambier, SA : 1861 – 1954), p. 5. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article77664546

WATERS, JOHN and ELLEN: John and Ellen are on the index as Walters.  They settled in the Nareen district.  PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/av27lhf

CONCERNING PEOPLE. (1913, April 16). The Register (Adelaide, SA : 1901 - 1929), p. 6. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article59253916

CONCERNING PEOPLE. (1913, April 16). The Register (Adelaide, SA : 1901 – 1929), p. 6. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article59253916

PORTLAND RED CROSS. (1917, May 10). Portland Observer and Normanby Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 2 Edition: MORNING. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article88675915

PORTLAND RED CROSS. (1917, May 10). Portland Observer and Normanby Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 – 1918), p. 2 Edition: MORNING. Retrieved February 28, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article88675915

WATERS, MALACHI AND MARYMalachi and Mary moved around, firstly to Horsham for work and later Portland, Digby and finally Wallacedale. PROV Index http://tinyurl.com/av27lhf

Established August 1842. The Portland Guardian,. (1902, March 12). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 - 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63992048

Established August 1842. The Portland Guardian,. (1902, March 12). Portland Guardian (Vic. : 1876 – 1953), p. 2 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved March 10, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article63992048

WILSON, Robert:  Robert sailed with his sister Mary Ann on the General Hewitt.  A year later Mary Ann had already lost track of her brother.  PROV Index:  http://tinyurl.com/a48edrr

Advertising. (1857, September 4). Portland Guardian and Normanby General Advertiser (Vic. : 1842 - 1876), p. 3 Edition: EVENING. Retrieved February 13, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article64569266

If one of your family members sailed on the 1856 voyage to Portland Bay on the General Hewitt, please let me know in the comments.

SOURCES:

Ancestry.com.au

Glenelg and Wannon Settlers

Victorian Public Record Office  – Index to British Assisted Immigration 1839-1871

Trove Digitised Newspapers


160 Years Ago Today…

This morning at 11.00am, I will think of my Hadden family sailing through the Heads into Port Phillip Bay, 160 years ago today.  I have previously posted about their journey on the Marco Polo, a clipper ship that altered the course taken by immigrant ships on their journey to Australia and in doing so, earned the title of Fastest Ship in the World.

Marco Polo Brodie Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria. http://tinyurl.com/9alkahe

Landing at Hobsons Bay, the Haddens made their own way to Melbourne and for the next 14 years I have no idea where they were.  In that time they “acquired” two daughters, Margaret and Ellen.   John’s birth in 1864 is the first clue to the Haddens being at Mokanger Station near Cavendish where Charles worked.

 

The children of  Charles Hadden and Agnes Dobson were:

WILLIAM: Born 1847  Haddington, East Lothian, Scotland; Marriage Mary Mortimer 1870, Cavendish; Died 1938,  Hamilton.

JAMES:  Born 1850 Haddington, East Lothian, Scotland; Died 1935, Cavendish.

MARGARET: Born circa 1854; Married James Cameron 1883; Died 1927,  Swan Hill.

ELLEN: Born circa 1861; Died 1948, Cavendish.

JOHN:  Born 1864, Cavendish; Died 1931, Cavendish.

AGNES: Born 1872, Cavendish; Died 1949, Hamilton.

 

I have searched records from Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales for the births of Margaret and Ellen with no success.  Yet on the their death records, they are the daughters of Charles Hadden and Agnes Dobson.  Also, the Probate Application at the time of  the death of Agnes, listed among her children are Margaret Cameron of Swan Hill and Ellen Hadden of Cavendish.   To find where they were born would help me find where they were for those 14 years.  They may well have been at Mokanger Station all that time.

The Hadden children were not really the marrying kind.  Of the six children, only two, my great great grandfather William and his sister Margaret, married.  William must have wanted to make up the numbers with he and wife Mary Mortimer having 10 children.  Margaret and her husband James had five children.  From the 15 grandchildren of Charles and Agnes,  I have found 47 great-grandchildren so far.

At 11.00am I will thank Charles and Agnes Hadden for deciding to leave Scotland to take the journey of a lifetime to come to Australia.  If they hadn’t, where would I be today?


The Fastest Ship in the World

On Boxing Day 1852, a clipper ship sailed into the port of Liverpool with a banner draped from its mast declaring it “The Fastest Ship in the World”.  The ship was the  New Brunswick built clipper “Marco Polo”.  The achievement, sailing from Liverpool to Melbourne and return in 175 days,  a world record at that time.  At the helm was Captain James Nicol “Bully” Forbes, a colourful and fearless character of the sea and a master of navigation.

Only five months before, 888 passengers, mostly emigrants, boarded the “Marco Polo” at Liverpool, England for the ship’s maiden voyage to Australia.  Of these,  661 were Scots, including my great, great, great grandfather Charles Hadden, his wife Agnes and sons, William and James.  They had made the journey from Haddington, East Lothian, Scotland to Liverpool,  to embark on a new life in Australia.  In the days before the voyage they would have been accommodated in the emigrant depot at Birkenhead before being loaded into the ship’s crowded  steerage.  The three decked ship was the largest at the time to sail to Australia and while it had rather plush fittings in some parts, for the emigrants conditions were poor.   The Haddens would have been accommodated amidships with the other families, in a small berth with little privacy.  With the firing of a cannon, the “Marco Polo” set sail on July 4, 1852 with Captain “Bully” Forbes intent on sailing to Australia and return in under six months.

Marco Polo Brodie Collection, La Trobe Picture Collection, State Library of Victoria.

Forbes had charted a course which he was sure would cut the travel time, by way of the great circle route.  This would see the ship sail south down the east coast of South America, and then steering south-east of Cape Town toward Antarctica.  The path was as south as possible without getting too close to ice.  It was here Forbes caught the “Roaring Forties” winds travelling  East until he was able to head north into Bass Straight.  For the passengers, this meant enduring the extremes of weather.  As they passed through the Equator they would have felt incredible heat, and then freezing cold as they moved into the “Roaring Forties” and “Howling Fifties”.  Also disease, particularly measles was rife below deck.  The crowded conditions at the emigrant depot and then on the ship had seen its rapid spread.  Of the 327 children on board, 51 died along with two adults.

When the “Marco Polo” sailed into Port Phillip Bay on September 18, 1852  the Victorian Gold Rush was in full swing and Forbes’ greatest concern was keeping his crew on board the ship.  This was made more difficult when coming into dock, with boats surrounding the clipper and reportedly throwing small nuggets onto the decks.  Other ships’ captains had told of not being able to get crew no matter how high the wages offered.

ON TOM TIDDLER’S GROUND. (1932, November 9). Cairns Post (Qld. : 1909-1954), p. 13. Retrieved May 4, 2011, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article41180687

Forty or so ships were causing a log jam  in Hobsons Bay.  Their crews had caught “gold fever” and had abandoned their posts.   So resolute  to return back to Liverpool quickly, Forbes had is own crew imprisoned for insubordination and when it was time to leave for England he paid their fines and returned them to the ship.  Despite his best efforts the time spent in port was 24 days, although without Forbes’ ingenuity it may have been longer.  Seventy-six days later the ship was sailing back up the Mersey, to dock at Liverpool, the world record journey complete.

The feat saw “Bully” Forbes retain the captaincy of the “Marco Polo” for another voyage to Australia in 1853 with 648 passengers, reduced from the previous voyage because of the learnt danger of overcrowding.    The ship was extensively renovated before the second voyage and was described at the time to be equal to a floating Crystal Palace.  The “Marco Polo” and Forbes brought over 1500 immigrants to Victoria in the two trips.  Forbes was then awarded the captaincy of the “Lightening” which he sailed to Australia in 1854.  From there he captained several other ships until his sea days ended in 1866.  He died in 1874 at only 52 years old but he had ensured his name would be remembered in maritime history.

The “Marco Polo” completed the round trip to Australia a total of 25 times in the 15 years after the first voyage with around 150,000 immigrants to Victoria.  From 1867, she was a cargo ship until 1883 when she was driven onto the shore at Prince Edward Island, Canada when found to be leaking badly during a cargo run.  A sad end for a ship that safely carried thousands of people to a new life in Australia.   In New Brunswick,  Canada, the “Marco Polo” is remembered proudly and The Marco Polo Project is overseeing the building of a replica ship. The “Marco Polo” is not as celebrated in Australia, but a large number of Australians today would have had ancestors arrive here thanks to the speedy clipper.

What of the Haddens?  Records show they left the Marco Polo at Hobsons Bay in September 1852 and made their own way to Melbourne, most likely to the Canvas Town in South Melbourne, a “tent city” for the thousands of  immigrants.  A son was born at “The Ruins” Mokanger Station near Cavendish in 1864 where they eventually settled.   But more about them later.

For further reading about the “Marco Polo” , the book Marco Polo  The Story of the Fastest Clipper by Martin J. Hollenberg (Chatham Press, London, 2006) has an extensive history of the ship.  Two interesting newspaper articles I found at the NLA’s Trove site,  also tell the story of both the Marco Polo and Captain “Bully” Forbes


The “Duke of Richmond”

On October 20, 1852, the barque “Duke of Richmond” sailed from Birkenhead, England bound for Portland Bay, Victoria, Australia.  Among the 236 passengers on board were two couples, each from different parts of England and one with small children.  They were my great, great, great grandparents James and Susan Harman and William and Margaret Diwell.  William and Margaret, from Kent had two daughters under five.  Another daughter had passed away before the journey.  James and Susan were from Cambridgeshire and been married only two months.

After around 140 days, Captain Thomas Barclay sailed the “Duke of Richmond” into Portland Bay on March 4, 1853.  The Portland Herald reported on March 11, 1853, that Captain Barclay and Dr Webbers, the Surgeon Superintendent, had attempted to make sure all immigrants were comfortable and happy in an almost competitive way.  However the voyage was also reported as arduous with much illness and over 20 deaths.  Measles claimed many of those that died.

The Diwell family disembarked and stayed in Portland  for another five years before moving to the Casterton area.  William was a bricklayer and left the ship on his own account.  James Harman was to be engaged by a Mr Robertson of Port Fairy for six months with wages of £50.

It is doubtful the two families came together again until 1945 when my grandparents, William Gamble and Linda Hadden were married in Hamilton.

I have done some extra research on the other passengers aboard the “Duke of Richmond“.  A number moved to the Byaduk area.  Some of the family names include Clarke, Everett, Gibbons, Looker, McIntyre, Merry, Patman and Spong.  There were several families from Cambridgeshire.  If anyone had family on the “Duke of Richmond“, it would be great to hear from you.

A full list of the passengers can be seen at the Public Record of Victoria (PROV) Index to Assisted British Immigrants 1839-1871.


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