THE PADDINGTON CEMETERY
Ithaca Labour Councilor said "the tombstones are good road metal." 1907
An old cemetery is one of the most
pathetic and melancholy spectacles in this world, and the pathos of it is
deepened when it has been allowed to drift into neglect and ruin, with broken
fences, overturned tombstones, fallen railings, obliterated inscriptions, rank
weeds, long grass and general desolation.
Longfellow said he “loved that ancient Saxon phrase which called the
burial ground God’s Acre,” but old and neglected cemeteries are a poor
compliment to the respect shown to God’s special property in graveyards.
It is not an honour to our boasted civilization that primitive races, and
those we are pleased to call “savages,” had far more reverence for their dead,
than the most highly civilised races of the present.
The aboriginal burying grounds of the world were not holiday resorts for
lewd and frivolous larrikins and larrikinesses, and sundry other types of human
animals whose presence is an insult to the dead. Nor were they feeding places
for goats and cows, and they were not allowed to drift into a condition which is
an insult to the living.
The Roman Catacombs (“Roma Sotteranea”), prove the reverent care of the
ancient Romans for their dead.
The Alabaster Sarcophagus of Psammetichus, and the magnificent urns and
expensively embalmed bodies of ancient Egypt, show a reverence for the dead not
paralleled by any other nation of the world. And no other nation had ever a
custom corresponding to the Egyptian “Trial of the Dead,” one of the most
weirdly dramatic and tragically mournful and pathetic spectacles in human
To come from the ancient to modern times, let us ask if our own fair land
of Queensland has a noble record in its treatment of the dead men and women, the
heroes and heroines of the rough old pioneering days of the past, the men and
women whose life work made stepping stones for the present to walk over where
they had to swim or wade through many a dark morass.
cemetery was on the bank
of the river on the curve of North Quay. That was the graveyard of the convict
period, a time of horrors unimaginable by the people of today. On that then
lonely spot, overlooking the placid river were deposited the bodies of soldiers,
convicts, and officers, who died from 1825 to 1839, and today their dust lies
there in the silence of that river bank, heedless of the continuous roar of the
city which stands now where they saw only the primeval forest, and nightly heard
the howl of the dingo and the songs of the savage tribes, far less savage than
the whites of that period. They lie there forgotten, the flogger and the
flogged, the slayer and the slain.
The old headstones from that graveyard were removed many years ago to
the cemetery at
There was also another early cemetery by the river and Roma Street, in front of
where the Helidon Spa establishment is situated. The tombstones from there were
also removed to the Paddington cemetery which is therefore
the most venerable graveyard in Queensland, the one with the most
fascinating historical associations, the one surrounded by the most pathetic and
romantic memories of the early days of Queensland.
The ancient Necropolis, venerable with age and sacred to the memory of
our early settlers, was the subject for discussion in a recent meeting of the
Ithaca Shire Council, which decided that it should be vested in the Council, and
transformed into a recreation ground.
In answer to a question concerning the disposal of headstones, Labour
Alderman White replied : “Break them up and use them for the footpaths; they
make good road metal!”
And nobody even attempted to brain him with a ruler! Probably the
braining process would be as much a physical impossibility with White as it
would be with a piemelon, but some might have at least have mercifully have
thrown him over a precipice if there was one convenient.
Darwin said that today, even among the most highly civilised races, there
are a number of men still in the Troglodyte stage, men who have the skulls and
intellects of cave dwellers who sat in their dark dwelling places and gnawed the
grilled bones of even their own parents, when having a special feast.
To such men there is nothing sacred, and they care for nothing but the
welfare of their own carcasses.
It was said of Cato that his love of gold was such, he sifted the ashes
of his dead father, to see if they would pan out a few pennyweights. There are
men who would dig up graves for the sake of the shrouds on the dead, and have
them made into shirts.
Some of the Ithaca aldermen are evidently still in the Troglodyte stage,
a stage at least ten thousand years lower than that of any savage race of today.
The proposal to insult the dead by making road metal of their tombs give the
Ithaca Council, and Alderman White, an unenviable distinction that we gladly
believe will stand as the only record of the kind in Australian history, from
the landing of Phillip to the far off period when this continent is to be once
more submerged in the ocean. If Alderman White’s skull is not broken up for road
metal after he is dead it ought to be placed in the Museum beside that of the
Diprotodon, and other extinct animals of the Post Pliocene period in Australia.
And the “Daily Mail” sent out a Troglodyte reporter who approved of Alderman
This is the first appearance of the Troglodyte in Queensland journalism.
It is safe to say that on no other paper is such a reporter possible, at least
not on the staff. He would be kept in an iron cage in the yard, and fed on
The Paddington cemetery holds most of the
historic people of Moreton Bay and Queensland. And in a series of articles we
shall endeavour to save the names and deeds of the most remarkable from
the oblivion of time.
Before entering those old cemeteries in that solemn, little valley, which
may be called the Valley of the Shadow of Death, it may be well to have a glance
at the outside. In those days, the various sects extended their exclusiveness
beyond the grave, and so the Wesleyan, the Jew, the Roman Catholic, and the
Church of England dead were kept carefully apart by a fence or a street. It was
a somewhat inconsistent scheme on the part of those who believe in a
resurrection that is to find all equal before God on the Day of Judgment. But
theology is not one of the exact sciences, and is subject to many amendments.
Today, in the Toowong cemetery, all sects sleep as
it were in the same room on apparently harmonious terms, as there is no recorded
case of a general disturbance.
Outside all the sects were two classes of unfortunates to whom
consecrated burial was denied. Those were suicides, who murdered themselves, and
malefactors whom the law murdered on the gallows. These are the dead “outside
the fence,” though there is no reason to suppose they have not slept as
peacefully, as those inside.
No headstones were placed over these lost souls, and so their graves are
not discoverable today. Their names only are found in the records. No one call
tell who was the first honest person inside, or the first criminal outside.
Toowong Cemetery started with the
grave of Miss Hill, a daughter of the late Walter Hill, who was first Curator of
the Brisbane Botanic
Gardens, in 1855. The next grave was that of Governor Blackall, on January 3,
Today the dead in Toowong Cemetery are more in number
than the whole of the living in Queensland at the date of Separation, when the
population was represented by 25,000 people.
Among the men buried in the old graveyard between Roma Street and the North
Quay were two named Stapylton and Tuck. Stapylton was one of three surveyors
sent up by Governor Gipps to start a trigonometrical survey of the Moreton Bay
district, the other two being Dixon and James Warner, who was, in after years,
Sergeant-at-Arms in the Assembly.
Stapylton and his two men, Tuck and Dunlop, were attacked by the blacks near Mt. Lindsay, and Stapylton and Tuck were killed, Dunlop being left as dead, but he crawled into the scrub and was found there alive by the relief party from Brisbane, and recovered dying only about 10 or 12 years ago.
The remains of Stapylton and Tuck were brought to Brisbane and buried in that
old ground near Roma
Street, where they may be turned up some day in an excavation or a
Two blacks named Merridoo and Noogamill were captured in May 1841, taken
to Sydney, tried and sentenced to death, brought back to Brisbane and hanged from a
beam on the present Observatory, the old convict windmill.
These two blacks, the first men hanged in Brisbane, were also buried
not far from Stapylton and Tuck.
The railway station of Stapylton on the Southport line perpetuates the name of the dead surveyor.
Among those outside the fence in the Paddington cemetery is a black called
Dundalli, hanged in 1854 in Queen Street on the site of the present Post Office.
He was charged with several murders, including those of Mr. Gregor and Mrs.
Shannon at the Pine River, in 1846.
In the same month, another black called “Davey” was hanged in Queen
Street for killing Mr. Trevethan at Wide Bay, and he too, is “outside the fence”
Many readers will remember Lachlan McLean, the once well-known and
respected blacksmith, of Elizabeth Street. His father and family came to Sydney
from Ross-shire in Scotland, in 1841, and six months afterwards came on to Brisbane, where McLean,
senior, was the first blacksmith. He died about 40 years ago and was buried at
There was a remarkable incident on the day of the funeral. At the moment
of passing the old gaol at Petrie Terrace, now a police barracks, an aboriginal
prisoner named “Tommy Skyring” was attempting to escape. He had climbed to the
top of the wall, and was just about to lower himself, when a warder shot him
dead, and he fell alongside the funeral procession, nearly on top of one of the
Tommy was one of three blacks who killed Stevens, the botanist in 1866,
near Mooloolah, at the spot still known as the “Dead Man’s Lagoon.”
It appears that Tommy gave himself up to the police, as Stevens haunted
him. He said the dead man came repeatedly and looked over his shoulder, and this
so scared Tommy that he refused to eat, and wasted away to a shadow.
But the old love of freedom overcame him, and he was making a dash for it
once more when the warder’s carbine stopped him at the start.
He, too, lies outside the fence at Paddington among the unwept, unhonored
At present in Brisbane are some visitors
from Scotland, impelled by a desire to find among the Paddington dead, the grave
of a relative who was buried there in 1864, and they have been successful.
Since the Toowong cemetery started a number of
people have been taken up and removed to there. Among these were the members of
the McLean family.
Among those buried in the Presbyterian section at Paddington was the Rev.
Thomas Mowbray, a once well-known Presbyterian parson, whose name is retained by
“Mowbray Park” at South Brisbane.
He was father of the present Mowbray P.M. of Warwick, and the late Willie
Mowbray, once P.M. at Herberton, and finally at Gympie.
He was also father of the wife of the still juvenile and vivacious Dr.
John Thompson, the most experienced medical man in Queensland.
The Mowbray Estate remained in the hands of the family until recent
years, the last of it being sold to the South Brisbane Council, who made
it the public Mowbray Park of today.
The remains of the Rev. Thomas Mowbray were removed in after years to the
cemetery at South Brisbane, where Mrs.
Mowbray, who died ten or twelve years ago, is also buried.
Among those in the Catholic ground at Paddington are the remains of a Mr.
And Mrs. Loague who came out from Londonderry, in Ireland, in 1852.
Loague was for many years a highly esteemed officer in the Police Force,
stationed at Petrie Terrace gaol.
One of his daughters, a fine-looking woman, married a Mr. Mylchreest, who
was for many years pilot and harbour master at Cairns, the first there, a six
foot two, broad-shouldered man, who died leaving one son and one daughter.
The son died, and the daughter, one of the finest specimens of women in
North Queensland, married a Mulgrave River stockowner named Simmonds, who died
some years ago, leaving a widow and four children, one of whom, the eldest girl,
is married and residing at present in Wynnum.
It is especially interesting to find such proofs as these that there has
been no deterioration, in the second or third generations, and that Loague’s
descendants today are quite equal in physique to their old Hibernian ancestors.
A few facts like these dispel many illusions concerning the adaptability of
Queensland, North and South, for the white races.
The smallest graveyard at Paddington is that of the Wesleyans. It has
also the distinction of being the most neglected. There does not appear to have
been more than 70 or 80 people buried there, and some of the graves have either
not been marked by headstones, or some of those stones have been broken or
A few score are lying on their faces, as tombstones frequently do even
when erect, and here and there is merely a fragment bearing a part of an
On some graves the headstones alone indicate the site, the wooden
railings having long since decayed, or been broken or removed for firewood, by
some of the ghouls who do these things at night when the nocturnal reptiles are
out in search of prey. The surrounding fence has also supplied much firewood,
which left panels with no rails, or one rail, and here and there dreary gaps in
the palings, with signs of age, and neglect, and decay, and the trail of
desolation over it all. Alone of all that is not dismal, and dead, and
forgotten, or unfit to be seen, stand two or three silky oaks and a Bunya pine,
of which we might say, as Byron said of the cypress:
tree still sad when others’ grief has fled,
only constant mourner o’er the dead.”
The oaks, which are about 40 feet in height, afford favourite climbing
exercise for the small boys of the locality and only a very foolish sparrow ever
builds a nest on even the highest branch.
At the south-east corner of the cemetery is a recumbent
vault stone telling us that below is all that is mortal of Annie Thompson Pugh,
wife of Theophilus P. Pugh, whose name will be handed on to posterity associated
with “Pugh’s Almanac.”
Pugh was once a member for North Brisbane, and while in the
House voted for the repeal of the Civil Service Act.
When he stood again for Brisbane, the whole Civil
Service was waiting for his blood, and he was thrown out with a loud bang.
Pugh was a little man with so much restless energy that he was known as
the “Industrious Flea.”
On the stone is only one line stating that:
never caused her friends to grieve until she died.”
a neat epigram such as shows
that brevity is often the soul of eloquence as well as of wit.
Mrs. Pugh died on March 1, 1866, aged 33 years.
Near the grave is a stone with the name of William Alfred Finney, the
eleven months son of Thomas and Sidney Ann Finney.
Sidney House, at Toowong, bears the name of the mother, and she and the
once well-known Tom Finney, founder of the firm of Finney Isles and Co., are in
the same Land of Shadows as the child who died on June 11, 1869.
That is one of the only three graves in a decent condition, but yet one
naturally wonders why it has not received more attention, or the stone removed
The best kept grave there, apparently recently much improved, is that of
Henry Edward Tom, second son of Henry and Emma Tom, a child of two years and
five months, who died on August 22, 1864.
That was 43 years ago, but the memory of the lost child is still green in
the hearts of some of the Tom family, well-known and respected squatters today
on the Maranoa.
Pathetic beyond expression are these childrens' graves, and there are
many of them.
“Only a child,” says the casual fool who has not known sorrow, or is not capable of feeling nor caring that
“out of the souls of the mothers of these, the light and joy of their life has fled,”
as they consigned those once
dearly loved white shrouded little forms to the dust.
Very singular are fatalities in some families.
Amy Josephine Leigh died on April 18, 1867, aged 8 months, and next year William Theodore Leigh died on January 17, at exactly the same age. The stone tells us that they were
“children of Thomas Leigh, and Jane White.”
presumably being the mother’s maiden name. The inscription reads:-
have early flown, dear, suffering ones,
to their rest,
have early learned the simple tones
land of the Blest,
that painless clime, in that region fair,
Amy, dear Willie, we’ll meet you there.”
The oldest grave appears to be that of Johanna Sutherland, who died on December 14, 1852, aged 70, and next comes George Poole, a Brisbane chemist and druggist, who died on May 6, 1853, at 30 years of age. Of him it is said that
“he died triumphant in
the faith of the Gospel.”
The Markwell family, well-known since early days, are represented by Mary Ann, wife of John Markwell, dead on April 8, 1855, aged 30, and Mary Ann, the wife of Isaac Markwell, dead on November 2, 1862, aged 45. Evidently Mary Ann was a favourite name in that family.
On the tomb of the wife of W. J. Killick Piddington, dead on October 25,
1866, aged 36, is this inscription, referring to her eight year old son, who
died on September 27, 1865:-
‘tis sweet balm in our despair,
Heaven is God’s, and thou are there,
Him in joy;
of my heart,
cannot be that long we dwell,
These are two verses from a very little known poem, one of the most
pathetic in the language. It appeared with the title of “Casa Wappy,” the pet
name of the poet’s son, who died at the age of four or five, and each double
verse ended with the name. They are among the finest In Memoriam verses ever
written, and the author was the famous Scotsman, Dr. Macbeth Moir. They first
appeared in “Blackwood’s,” over the nom-de-plume “Delta” in 1847.
On one tomb is the name of Eliza, wife of Charles Abraham, whose name
would indicate a Hebrew origin, but she may have been a Christian. She was born
on July 15, 1813, and died on March 12, 1875. One of her sons is today a Brisbane town traveler for a
firm bearing a Semitic name.
On her headstone is the following eulogy:-
was - but words are wanting to say
what a wife should be, and she was that.”
Florence Gertrude was the seven months daughter of Charles Henry and
Caroline Harley, who inscribed over the tomb of this young soul thus prematurely
hurried from the world:
“To those who for her loss are grieved
This consolations give,
She from a world of woe was
To bloom, a rose in Heaven!”
The name of Harley was well-known to Brisbane in recent years in
the firm of Rogers and Harley, printers, of Elizabeth Street.
The name of “William” (buried on July 7, 1868) four days’ old son of
William H. and Minna Miskin, now in Rockhampton, was once a well-known Brisbane solicitor, who for
some years was also Official Trustee in Insolvency, and he lived out at
He was an enthusiastic entomologist, and by purchase and exchange made
one of the finest butterfly and moth collections in Queensland.
But the blue serenity of the Miskin household was overclouded by a
darkness that might be felt. A new and strange planet, called “Governess,” swung
into the orbit of the Miskin system, and the lawful occupant of that sphere
appealed to the Terrestrial laws, and Miskin and “Governess” swung off into an
orbit of their own, and have remained there ever since.
Miskin’s butterflies were sold to the Brisbane Museum for £250,
and are there at the present time, all except one specimen – “Governess
Superbus”- which he wisely retained.
One of his brothers, A. E. Miskin, was once owner of Bundall plantation
on Nerang Creek, his partner for a time being “Charley Morris,” the present C.
A. M. Morris P.M. of Ipswich.
This Miskin afterwards took up a 1280 acre selection of the Johnstone
River and settled there.
But the four day’s old baby of July, 1868, has slumbered in blissful
unconsciousness, and the mother, a most esteemable woman, is far away from the
lonely grave of the child of her early days.
James Stevens died on August 27, 1866, aged 75 years, and the headstone
was “Erected by his bereaved widow.” Alas! Alas! Thus are we ever face to face
with the Eastern Monarch’s Proverb:
all the world can give or land,
know that death is at the end!”
“Letitia, wife of Robert Raymond,” is all that one headstone
Jane, the wife of Henry Franklin, once a builder in Fortitude valley, died on September 5, 1859, leaving this message:
“Farewell, my husband, I’m
love for you can be no more,
not for me, nor sorrow take,
love my children for my sake.”
James Wakefield, who died at 57, on July 8, 1857, was father of the well known Hiram Wakefield. His widow died on July 4, 1873, aged 68.
Remarkable are the deaths of so many young women. Mary Ann, the wife of
Henry Walpole, an old time Valley tradesman, died on August 5, 1854, aged 21.
Her sister Francis died on October 15, in the same year, aged 18, and a child
who survived her, died at 21 – the same age as her mother.
Elizabeth, wife of Daniel Allen, cabman, of Fortitude Valley, died at the age of 30, on May 6, 1875. She was born in Roscrea, Tipperary and left three sons. She buried her first two infant children in unmarked graves in the Church of England portion of the cemetery.
Henry John Isaac Markwell, son of John Markwell, and one of the dandies
of the period, a fine young fellow, was killed off his horse on the Toowong
Fanny, the wife of William Sexton, of South Brisbane, died on March12,
1872, aged 27, and Susannah Sarah, wife of E. J. Kingston, a Valley storekeeper,
died on October 8, 1859.
The old Brisbane
Costin family, well known today, gave the grave, on May 7,1875, a young man of
18½ years, son of Thomas A. Costin, once a Queen Street saddler, whose successor
was the well known Jarman. His brother, W. J. Costin, is the present chemist in
the Valley, and father of W. C. Costin, the Clerk of Parliaments. His brother,
J. T. Costin, is in charge of the lithographic department in the Government
Printing Office, and one of his sons, J. M. Costin, went recently to Thursday
Island as Shipping and Fisheries Inspector.
Mr. And Mrs. Thomas Costin, the grandparents, came to Moreton Bay in
September, 1848, on the advice of T. H. Green, Mrs. Costin’s brother, who was
then a merchant and stock and station agent in South Brisbane. The Costins went
in those days to the church on the present site of the Longreach Hotel. Then
Costin, J. P. Smith, A. Warricott, Freeman, and Chambers, started the first
Methodist cause in Queensland in a little lane on the site of the present
“Telegraph” newspaper, and the first minister to arrive was the Rev. William
Moore, the first church being erected in Albert Street and Burnett Lane, and
doing duty for some time for both Methodists and Congregationalists.
In those days the present Angus Gibson, M.L.C., lord of Bingera
plantation, was making a living out of cabbage growing at Bulimba. In 1863 he
was going along Queen Street and heard singing in the Albert Street church. It
must have been first class singing, for it fascinated Angus, and he went in and
became a Methodist, and has continued to be one ever since. This is the tale
told by Angus himself.
Jane Merry, wife of T. F. Merry, died on May 26, 1865, aged 32. She was
the first wife. Merry was for years a draper in the Valley, when Tom Finney was
there in the same business, before he came to Queen Street. He is still alive,
and a member of the firm of Barnes and Co., of which Barnes M.L.A., is the
Caroline Rhodes, who died on March 2, 1864, at the age of 21, was a
daughter of Ralph Rhodes, who then had the Sawyers Arms Hotel in George Street,
where Trittons is today. Rhodes and his wife were people much esteemed and their
carefully kept house was a favourite resort for people from the country. He
married a second time, but both are dead. Rhodes had a daughter named Cordelia,
who married a George Gotcher, and died on August 24, 1869, aged 25 years. Her
mother, Rhodes’ first wife, Margaret, died on August 26, 1869, aged 53 years, so
that mother and daughter died within two days of each other.
The stone over John Bucknell Waldron, who died at 27 on July 26, 1861,
was erected by the children of the Congregational Sunday School “as a token of
love and esteem for a kind teacher.” How many of those children are alive
Harriett Paten, wife of John Paten, died on February 24, 1861. Paten, in
1856, was a leading bootmaker in Queen Street, and he and “Bobby Cribb” were
associated in business. The headstone records that
“And as we have borne the
image of the earthly,
we shall also bear the image
of the Heavenly.”
Clara Alice Harries, wife of Eustace Henry Harries, died on April 25, 1870, and the stone says she was
“Blest in hope, revered in memory.”
She died in
giving birth to her first baby. Harries was a draughtsman in the Colonial
Architect’s Department, of 40 years ago.
Catherine Ann Girling, wife of William Girling, died on November 14,
1865, aged 21, and her sister Mary Smith Deacon, died on November 27, aged
By this time the reader will doubtless have noticed the astonishing
number of deaths among young women aged between 16 and 21, and here comes a
remarkable statement by one of Brisbane’s oldest
inhabitants, a man who has been here since 1851. He says that in the early days
there was much bad water, total disregard of drainage, cesspit closets of the
worst type, and no attention to sanitation. Much fever, then considered to be
malarial, was certainly typhoid. The critical age was that from 16 to 22, and
once over 22, there was a prospect of a fairly long life. The death rate among
children and young girls was terribly high. Painfully conspicuous is the absence
of old people in the cemetery.
Among all in the Methodist section, there are only two over 60 and two
over 70. The majority are under 30. And young men appeared to have no more
immunity than women, as the list will show.
Among those, R. B. Boardman Silcock died in January, 1865, aged 38; Menander Malcolm on June 28, 1872, aged 27; G. G. Stokes on October 28, 1872, aged 22 years; and James Chapman, on November 10, 1867, aged 13 years. On his headstone are the words,
“Faith looks beyond the
grave, and on to light and immortality.”
Over Stokes are the words,
“Man cometh forth as a flower and is cut down.
He fleeth also as a
shadow and continueth not.”
With this we finally leave the Methodist cemetery, one of God’s most
the traveller meets aghast,
Sheeted memories of the
Shrouded forms that start
they pass the wanderer by;
robed forms of friends long given
When the Paddington cemeteries were first reserved, that region was then
“out in the bush,” and apparently no-one foresaw an extension of Brisbane in that direction
within the lifetime of any of the existing generation.
The ridges sloped down from Petrie Terrace into a swamp at the bottom. In
those days ducks and herons and snipe fed in that swamp, and kangaroos and
wallabies hopped through the ironbarks and spotted and box gums on the
surrounding slopes. At night there was heard the mournful howl of the furtive
dingo, and the call of the melancholy stone plover. Blacks climbed the trees and
cut out the opossum and the wild bees nest. Electric trams were far off, in an
unknown and unimagined future. The Philp and Kidston and Bowman parties were
lying dormant in protoplasm, like the egg of Eros in Chaos, to be hatched one
day by numerous strange devices. Around Brisbane stretched the
primeval wilderness, to unknown regions beyond.
These thoughts arise as we stand in the Presbyterian cemetery, by the grave of
Andrew Petrie, that fine old Scot, who came to Sydney as one of a select band of
Scottish mechanics in the Stirling Castle in 1831.The stone tells us that he was
born on June 25, 1798, and died at Brisbane on February 20,
1872. What eventful 41 years occupy that space from 1831 to 1872! And how
closely are the Petries identified with the early history of Queensland! Tom
Petrie, who lives at the North Pine, is today, at 71 years of age, the oldest
resident of Queensland. He came here as a year old baby with his parents in
In 1837 Andrew Petrie was engaged in Sydney as foreman of Works in
Moreton Bay and he and his family came up in the small steamer James Watt. In
the following year Petrie first discovered coal at Redbank, where the Tivoli
mine is today. In 1838 e discovered the Bunya pine at the Blackall Range and
brought the first plants to Brisbane. This tree actually
received the name “Pinus Petriane,” but J. C. Bidwell, a collector of that time,
sent some specimens to London and it was named “Araucaria Bidwilli”, the name it
bears today. Bidwell is buried at the mouth of Tinana Creek.
Petrie’s first work at Moreton Bay was the repair of the treadmill, the
Observatory of today. From a window of that Observatory, in 1841, there
projected a beam, on which two aboriginals were hanged, though proved afterwards
to be innocent. The gallows were arranged under Petrie’s instructions, and the
hangman, who came from Sydney, complimented him on his work. Petrie was not
proud of the compliment. In May 1842, accompanied by Henry Stuart Russell,
author of the “Genesis of Queensland,” Joliffe, Wrottesley, a convict crew, and
two aboriginals, Petrie went on that memorable Mary River and Wide Bay trip from
which they brought back Bracefell and Davis, the two convicts who had been ten
and fourteen years respectively with the blacks. Andrew Petrie was a fine
specimen of a man, tall and good looking, with curly hair and beard. His sons,
too, were all tall, fine men, and only Tom is left. One of his daughters married
the late Bob Ferguson, who stood six feet four. Bob was for many years Inspector
of Works, and among his early contracts was the erection of the Sandy Cape
lighthouse, in 1872.
In the same railing as Andrew Petrie, is Mary Cuthbertson Petrie, who
died on June 1, 1855, also Walter Daniel, a year and ten months child of John
and Jane Petrie, died on November 3, 1857. This child would be a brother of the
present Andrew Petrie M.L.A.
Andrew Petrie had a son named Walter, who at 20 years of age, was an
exceptionally powerful young fellow. At that time, a small creek ran from the
present Roma Street
station down across Queen Street, by the site of the present New Zealand
Buildings, and into the river at the end of Creek Street.
Walter Petrie fell in, and was found drowned, partly buried in the mud,
and grasping a bunch of mangroves in his hand. As he was a splendid swimmer, he
must have hurt himself in the fall. His brother, John Petrie, father of A. L.
Petrie, M.L.A., had a child whom he named Walter after the drowned youth. There
was a singular coincidence when that child at a year and ten months old, was
drowned in the same creek responsible for the death of the uncle whose name he bore. That is
the child in the Paddington grave.
There is also another child of five months, Annie Petrie, who died on
December 21, 1863. Here then is the grand old warrior pioneer of the early days,
for ever at rest, while:
“The Almighty hand from an
Pours out the never ending
flood of years.”
And all we who are alive are but as a foam wreath on the advancing wave
behind which lies the dead ocean of the past.
Matilda Buxton, who died on March 3, 1866, aged 41, was the wife of J. W.
Buxton, who had a stationary and fancy goods shop in Queen Street, where Ryder
the tailor is today. They buried two of their children, Matilda Adelaide, on
April 11, 1862, and Ada Matilda, on March 3, 1865.
An elegant marble column, with a draped crest, is over the grave of Celia
Sabina Craies, wife of William Craies, first manager of the Bank of New South
Wales in Brisbane. The
long thy power hath blessed us,
it still will lead us on,
moor and craig and torrent,
the night is come.”
The only other marble headstone is over a son of Archibald McMillan,
owner of some of the first vessels in the Polynesian traffic. The boy, aged 11,
died on March 28, 1866.
Jessie Mainwaring, wife of a once leading Queen Street tailor, died on
July 29, 1875, aged 37 years.
Adam Cumming, aged 31, died on May 23, 1861. He succeeded John Stephens,
brother of T. B. Stephens, and uncle of the present Hon. W. Stephens, as
secretary of the Queensland Steam Navigation Board.
William Cowans, who died on February 3, 1871, at the early age of 32, was a bookseller and stationer in Edward Street. The stone says:
“The spirit and the bride say come;
and let him that heareth say come;
and let him that is athirst come;
and whoever will,
let him take the water of life freely.”
certainly no desire to be irreverent, but this does read like a free invitation
from a newly married couple who have opened an hotel. All epitaphs ought to
leave not a shadow of anything suggesting the ridiculous. They should be
severely clear, and concise, elegant and expressive. Heaven knows there is a
vast supply to select from.
Mary Jeffcoat died March 3, 1855, aged 50, and Julia Jeffcoat on
September 15, 1862, aged 49. Descendants of this family are still well known in
Jessie Campbell Mackellar, who died on January 11, 1872, aged 29, was the
wife of Alexander Mackellar, a once prominent printer and lithographer, whose
maps of Brisbane were
famous at one time, and are still well known.
Alexander McDonald, an Argyleshire Highlander, was a well-known tide
waiter in the Customs, at Lytton. He was father of Alick McDonald, known to us
today as the landlord of the Shamrock Hotel, in Edward Street. One daughter was
married to Murray Prior, the handsome barrister brother of Mrs. Campbell Praed.
He died a few years ago at an early age. The tombstone over McDonald was
“erected by his friends and brother officers.”
Donald Coutts, who died on December 27, 1857, was the owner of
“Toolburra,” the first station taken up on the Darling Downs, by Patrick Leslie
in 1841. He was a brother of Tom Coutts, who died recently at Toolburra. Tom was
the owner who sold the station, or part of it, to the Government, and acquired
some prominence in a recent Parliament in connection with a letter written to
him by a prominent member of Parliament who was alleged to have claimed
commission. Donald Coutts was killed by the kick of a foal, at Bulimba, where he
resided in a house built for D. C. McConnell. Beside his grave is that of a
sister-in-law, Anna Maria Thompson, who died on March 8, 1862, aged 47, and the
pilgrim panting for the rest to come,
exile anxious for her native home.”
Jessie Guthrie, who died on June 20, 1871, was the wife of John Guthrie, who was first a solicitor with Little and Brown, and afterwards on his own account. He lived in a house called “Lucerne,” long occupied afterwards by John Scott, once Chairman of Committees, at Milton. Beside it stood one of the handsomest fig trees in Brisbane. Jessie was Guthrie’s first wife. His second was Miss Fowles, sister of William Lambert Fowles, once Legislative Assembly for Clermont, and father of the present Under-Secretary in the Treasury. Guthrie was residing at Wooloowin, when he died, and his second wife now resides in Tasmania. In the grave with the first wife are her two children, Mary Isabella, aged 4, and Francis Drummond, aged 2, one died in July 1864, the other in July, 1861. Intensely pathetic are those graves that hold the mothers and their children.
John Randall, who died on November 31, 1873, aged 45, was head master of
the Normal School, and his pupils and friends erected his headstone as a
memorial of their esteem. He opened the school at first with a graceful little
speech, in which he expressed a hope that they would all be conspicuous for
punctuality, and equally obedient to him in school and their parents at home.
The youngsters afterwards held a public meeting in the playground, to discuss if
it was possible to thus serve two masters. This awful problem was left unsolved.
Randall left a family, deservedly held in high esteem. They lived for many years
next the brewery at Milton, but are now residing on Gregory Terrace. One
daughter is the wife of B. W. McDonald, manager of the A.U.S.N. Company.
There were originally five sons and five daughters, but three of the sons
are dead. All five daughters are married.
Janet M. Burns, who died on February 6, 1875, was the eldest 4½ year old
daughter of John and Jane Burns. John Burns was partner to the once well known
firm of J. and J. Burns, now represented by Burns, Philp & Co, in whose firm
James Burns is managing partner.
Alexander Gordon Cummings, who died on December 28, 1866, was the four year old child of Charles C. and Helen Cummings, who in those far off days, kept an hotel at the corner of George and Turbot Streets.
George Phillips was a carter and contractor on Spring Hill, and he and his wife, Eliza, buried their son, William, aged 30, on September 23, 1871, and the stone says:
“Walking humbly with his God,
he was prepared to obey the summons
‘Come up hither.’
Be ye also ready”
John Murray, who died aged 33, on January 11, 1866, left a widow who
married a Mr. Nott. Murray was the most expert painter and glazier of his time
and Nott had a general store in Elizabeth Street. Mrs. Nott survives him and
still resides out near Woolloongabba. On April 16, 1861, she buried her 4½ year
old child by her first husband.
Angus Mathieson, who died March 11, 1872, aged 38, was a South Brisbane carpenter. On his grave is a ponderous stone, like the dome of a vault.
Next to him is a grave with four children named Laing, four little girls,
Helen, Margaret, Ann and Elizabeth, aged 11, 13, 14 and 17 months, not one
reaching two years of age. Three died in 1863, and one in 1873, so the first
three must be the children of two mothers, unless two were twin. A cypress pine
“Callitris Robusta,” evidently an old tree, has fallen between the two graves,
and lies partly on the stone over Mathieson, with a branch over the little
girls. The four dead children, the dead man, and the dead cypress! There is no
more pathetic or mournful scene in the cemetery.
the traveller meets aghast,
Sheeted memories of the
Shrouded forms that start
they pass the wandered by,
robed forms of friends long given
agony to the earth and heaven.
From the Methodists, we pass across a street, into the adjoining graveyard, occupied by all that is mortal of the Queensland Baptists of a bygone age.
The name “Baptist” dates back to Thomas Munzer, of Storck, in Saxony, in
the year 1621, nearly 400 years ago.
History tells us that “he excited a rebellion of the lower orders in Germany, quelled in bloodshed in 1525.”
Several other insurrections followed, all ending in blood, and finally
from 1535 to 1540, a number of Anabaptists were executed in England. On January
6, 1661, about 100 of these peculiar people, led by Thomas Venner, a wine cask
cooper, appeared in arms in London, and were only conquered after half of them
were killed. They fought like devils, and killed a lot of soldiers. Sixteen of
them were executed, including Venner. The Baptist published their Confession of
Faith in 1643. In 1635, Rhode Island, in America, was settled entirely by
Baptists, and today they are a peaceful, respectable and important body among
the religious sects of Queensland.
The warlike, death defying spirit of Venner, and his self devoted
warriors has departed. The most remarkable modern Baptist preacher was Charles
Haddon Spurgeon, who died at Mentone, in Italy, on January 31, 1892.
With this we pass into the Baptist section of the Paddington cemetery of Brisbane. It differs from
the Methodist graveyard in appearance, by being surrounded with an old paling
fence, which has locked gates, the key being held by a local resident, who has
the privelege of grazing his cows among the tombstones.
What matters where we fail to fill the maws
Of worms? On battle field or
Both are but theatres, where the chief
In Brisbane it
matters not apparently where our dead are buried, for ultimately the moo cow
crops the herbage around the tombstones and perfumed Capricornus regales himself
with the bouquets left on the graves by bereaved relatives.
In the Baptist area is the same neglect – general decay and wreckage and
desolation. Fallen headstones, ruined railings, and broken fragments prove how
brief is remembrance of the dead.
Here we have Mary, the first wife of Moses Ward, a once well known chemist. She died on May 21, 1872, aged 55, and Moses has since filled the vacuum in his soul with a fresh bride who brought him a substantial dowry. A good solid dowry dries a lot of tears. On her grave, the grief stricken Moses of 1872, has told us that:
“I would not have you ignorant brethren concerning them that are asleep;
that ye sorrow not, not even as others which have no hope;
for if ye believe that Jesus died, and rose again,
even so also them which are asleep in Jesus will God bring with him.”
We make no attempt to explain this, as the human intellect is limited, and would
be lost beyond redemption in an attempt to elucidate these intricate theological
Great men were living before Agamemnon, and there were “Badgers” in Brisbane before the autocrat
of the tramways.
Benjamin Badger died on November 18, 1874, aged 49, followed by his wife
Ellen, on December 8, 1874, at the age of 50, and Joseph their son, on December
22, a fortnight after their mother.
With these, the Badger family became extinct.
Susan Elizabeth Warry and Edith May Warry were two children who died in
1864. Their father was C. S. Warry, a Brisbane and Ipswich
chemist, brother of R. L. Warry, a once well known merchant, and T. S. Warry,
who died as a bachelor. His two brothers are also dead.
Eli Hallet, of Huddersfield, England, died on September 24, 1866, aged 28
years. His father was a butcher, and with J. and W. Orr, then butchers of South
Benjamin William was the nine year old son of Thomas and Ruth Baker. The
stone tells us that the boy was drowned, and also invites to “Come to be
where Jesus is and see his smiling face.”
Eliza Brady Atkins was a ten months child, who died on February 11, 1867,
and William Bryant, from Tovil, in Kent, died at Kedron Brook on October 15,
Agnes Lucy Blackford, who died on May 22, 1868, was the wife of William
Blackford, a baker in the Valley.
Emma Slater was the wife of Slater, a once prominent bookseller and
stationer, who was the predecessor of Gordon and Gotch. She died on August 8,
Jane Orr, who died on March 15, 1863, at 58 years of age, was the wife of
an old South Brisbane
butcher of the firm of J. and W. Orr.
Her daughter, Margaret, died on December 25, 1870, aged 23.
One headstone merely tells us that Hannah Maria was the wife of Herbert
John Cadbury died on May 28, 1866, aged 29.
The next stone records the death on June 19, 1867, aged 64, of John Bale,
who was the father of the once well known J. L. Bale, secretary of the Brisbane Building
Kate Spilsbury, who died on August 26, 1862, was the wife of an old Brisbane confectioner, the
Compagnoni of his day.
Joseph Street, who died in November 1867, aged 43, was the father of a
family of robust good looking girls, who once kept a millinery and artificial
flower shop in the William Street building now occupied by the Protectorate of
Aboriginals. It was also once the office of that pious paper, the “Evangelical
Standard,” of which Brentnall was one of the associate editors. One Miss Street
married A. D. Douglas, afterwards Inspector of Police, and another married J. G.
Drake, the ex-Federal Minister. Mrs. Douglas died recently and Douglas has gone
to reside in London.
Eleanor Ann, was the six months old baby of Emily Copeland, whose husband
kept the Prince Consort Hotel, in the Valley. The child died in December,
John Samuel Kingsford, who died on July 17, 1870, at the age of 22,
leaving a young wife and infant son, was a son of the Rev. John Kingsford, a
Baptist minister, and brother of R. A. Kingsford, once M.L.A. for South Brisbane, and for many years
a resident of Cairns, where he was defeated at an election by F. T. Wimble. R.
A. and John Kingsford were drapers in Queen Street, where their business was
ruined by a disastrous fire. Then John took to preaching, but Richard Ash stuck
to business and prospered.
Thus ended “Truth’s” first epistle to the Baptists, and we leave that
section with a feeling of sorrow, to find that the dead have been as much
neglected as those of the Methodists and that the graves are in an equally
We cross the tramline and look down from the embankment of the raised
street at half a dozen headstones, which represent the Jewish cemetery. It appears that a
number were removed to Toowong, and it would have spared any self respecting son
of Israel many a blush had the others been removed, and all trace of the cemetery been obliterated.
Presumably the Jews who sat down and wept by the rivers of Babylon, were
compelled to gaze at a cemetery like that at
Paddington. There is not even a fence, nor any railings. The wandering Jew, in
all his peregrinations, never saw anything like that. We cannot picture any
Hebrew passing that spot and not fainting with shame. As usual in Jewish
cemeteries, the stones bear inscriptions in both Hebrew and English. One records
the death of “Aelcey,” the wife of Coleman Davis, who died on May 13, 1876, aged
36. The Jewish year is given as 3685. Coleman Davis was a well known man who
kept a toy shop called the “Civet Cat” in Queen Street.
Osias Loewe died on December 10, 1872, aged 43. On the headstone is an
arm with a hand pouring water out of a pitcher into a broken basin. One of
Loewe’s daughters married Isaac Markwell and became the mother of a man who was
drowned in his bath at Wooloowin, under circumstances which evolved a remarkable
lawsuit. Another daughter married the manager of one of our banks.
Herbert Michael, son of Lawrence Levy, died at the age of 27, on November
20, 1871. He was clerk with A. E. Alexander a well known auctioneer of that
We leave this desolate and forlorn Jewish cemetery with a series of
sighs to express our emotions, for language is not equal to the occasion.
Then we obtain the key of the Presbyterian area and ramble into a
wilderness of lantana which requires a scrub knife before we can read the
inscriptions. Here we find a superior class of headstones and monuments, with
much clearer inscriptions, but all the higher ground is covered with lantana,
and many headstones are nearly invisible. George Christie died on March 16,
1857, aged 36, his daughter Sarah Ogilvie having died on April 27, 1856, aged 3,
and his brother on February 12 in the same year. George Christie was manager of
a store at the corner of Russell and Grey Streets, in South Brisbane. The store belonged
to old Bobby Towns and Co., and Christie was their representative.
John Moffit was a teamster who died in January 1861, aged 38, and his
mother Margaret died in December 1860, aged 68. They had a daughter Minnie who
married Daniel Cahill, and she is now an elderly widow residing at Peachester.
One of her children, a boy, aged two and a half, died on April 10, 1871, and is
buried beside his grandparents. The grandmother, Margaret, once lived near
Colinton, and while there had an adventure with the blacks.
One of her sons was in the house seriously ill, and his father had gone
away for assistance, leaving only herself and the dying boy. The blacks had seen
Moffit leave, and thought it a fair time to raid the house, and probably kill
Mrs. Moffit. But she was equal to the occasion. She dressed herself in Moffit’s
clothes, walked round the house, went inside, and came out again with another
suit on. She did this lightning change artist business so neatly that the blacks
thought there were three or four men in the house, and retired. This presence of
men probably averted a tragedy.
A remarkable man was James Low, who was born on January 4, 1791 in
Scotland, and died at Brisbane on September 24,
1871. His wife, Isabella, died at “Newmill on Drumoak” in Aberdeenshire on October 29, 1823. A
son died there also, aged 11. A
daughter, Catherine, married to Charles Smith, died at Brisbane on December 8,
1853, and a son, aged 19, died on September 2, 1851. His daughter, Annie,
married Rudolph Zillman, son of J. L. Zillman, of German station, one of the
original German missionaries, sent to Moreton Bay by Dr. Lang in the convict
days. James Low was a very well known timber getter in the Maroochy and
Mooloolah districts, and his name is handed down to posterity, attached to the
tree known to both timber getters and botanists, as “Jimmy Low,” the botanical
name being “Eucalyptus Resinifera.”
Mary Foran, wife of Edmund Mellor, died on January 17, 1859, aged 26, and in the same grave are her two children, one a month old, and the other a year and a half, John and Agatha. On the stone is
“They are gone to the grave,
we no longer behold them;
whose God was their ransom,
their guarantee and guide.
He gave the. He took them,
and He will restore them
and death was no sting for their Savior who died.”
This is the usual
enigmatical epitaph which baffles all human comprehension.
Edmund Mellor was a well known man, who for many years was captain of the
old stern wheel steamer, Settler, which ran between Brisbane and Ipswich. His
second wife was a Miss Duncan, whose daughter is the Eva Mellor of today, whose
stately and statuesque figure is occasionally familiar in Queensland. The dark
eyed Juna, this “daughter of the gods, divinely tall,” stands six foot two, and
is probably therefore the tallest woman in Queensland. One of her mother’s
sisters was married to John Stewart, an old pioneer veteran, who died a year ago
on the Pine River. He was a father of the late Miss Stewart, of Brisbane. A brother of Mrs.
Mellor, Charles Duncan, is a well known storekeeper at Laidley. He was the first
man that took a dray from Maryborough to Gympie, when that field was
James Powers died on August 20, 1854, leaving a wife and four children,
one of whom in the present day is the well known Charlie Powers, who was
Postmaster General in the Morehead Ministry, 1889 – 1890.
Robert Mauley died on February 24, 1855, aged 25, the son of a cabinet
maker in Elizabeth Street, half a century ago.
Alice, the wife of Matthew Henry, died at 23, on August 11, 1851. The
stone speaks for the husband “who loved her during life, mourned her death, and
revere her memory.” Beneath that “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord,
David Muir, a shipwright of that time, erected a stone over his two
children, one 4 years, one born and died on the same day, October 24, 1863.
Kate Pringle, a niece of Tom Finney, died on July 21, 1864, aged 24, one
of the appalling number of young girls cut off ultimately in their youth. Tom
Finney’s first wife was a Miss Pringle, who lived only for a few months. His
second wife was a Miss Jackson, and the third is the present widow who survives
him. Very few people know that Tom was married three times.
“Where are the Kings, and
where the rest,
Of those who once the world possessed?”
In the centre of all the Paddington cemeteries stands that devoted to the
Roman Catholics of a past generation.
It is said to be still the only Catholic cemetery consecrated in
Queensland. This means that it was all consecrated at one time. The usual custom
is to consecrate each new grave. The ceremony was performed in the year 1858, by
Archbishop Polding, of Sydney, one of the earliest and ablest of the Roman
Catholic prelates in Australian history. The ceremony was solemn and impressive,
and there was a great gathering of the Catholic people. The cemetery in those days was
merely a patch of ordinary forest, covered by coarse grass, bushes and trees.
The Archbishop’s gold Pectoral Cross fell off his breast into the grass, and no
one saw it fall. When the loss was discovered, they searched for it in vain. An
advertisement appeared in the “Courier” offering £5 reward, but there was no
response. The cross was regarded as lost beyond recall, and superstitious people
considered the loss an evil omen for the new cemetery. No finder
appeared, and no emaciated, conscience stricken wallaby hopped along with it as
did the jackdaw of Rheims with the Cardinal’s ring.
Then came a remarkable series of events. A man, whose name is forgotten,
came out as an emigrant cook, on board a vessel called the Alfred. He was one of
the spectators at the consecration of the cemetery. A few weeks
afterwards, whilst on board the steamer, Bredalbane, at the present Queen’s
Wharf, he fell overboard and drowned. When the authorities opened his clothing
box, there, lo and behold, lying on top, was the Archbishop’s lost cross. He had
known it was a valuable article of solid gold, and was waiting to get a bigger
price than the £5 reward. Of course, every good Catholic firmly believed that
God had drowned that man for his sacrilegious appropriation of the cross! There
must be a divine judgment in such cases. We can recall a man who stole a
priest’s horse, and three months afterwards he became a member of the Queensland
Parliament. This shows that no man can appropriate sacred property without some
awful fate overtaking him.
We were on a visit to Cunnamulla seven years ago, when some impious
ruffian stole £3 /15 s out of Father O’Sullivan’s room in the Catholic Church.
The genial priest assured us that the man would most certainly be struck down by
But that is a digression. There were many graves in the catholic cemetery before it was
consecrated by Archbishop Polding. ..(text missing) ...chapter of information
for his book on “The Early Days. The husband of the girl wife, Mary Ann Gorman,
married again, and still resides in Brisbane, where he keeps a
store in Boundary Street.
Louis Schneider was a saddler who died on April 27, 1868, aged 30. His
widow, Maria Jane, afterwards married Joseph Baines, and became Mayoress of Brisbane. When Baines died
she married a contractor named Ryan, who built the Roman Catholic Church at
Kangaroo Point and the Palace Hotel at South Brisbane. The lady had then
s German, an English, and an Irish husband. Perhaps she was solving some great
ethnological problem, or was like the Irish bigamist who was proved to have
married six wives, and explained to the judge that “he was merely trying to get
a good one!” She is still in robust health, drives out daily, and owns the
Mrs. Sybella Clune died in Margaret Street on June 11, 1863. The
headstone was erected by her only surviving daughter, a Mrs. Cameron, who was
afterwards lost in the Fiery Star, which was burned at sea on Good Friday.
Thomas M. Clune died on April 10, 1853, aged 27, and the stone was erected by
John McCabe, who died in 1861, aged 53, was one of the leading merchants
of that time, and also owned a number of teams. He also owned Queen’s Wharf, and
a large area of South Brisbane. His store was in
George Street, at the corner of Charlotte Street, opposite the old “Courier”
office John McCabe and Jeremiah Daly were great chums, and in their many visits
to hotel parlors, McCabe’s toast was, “Here’s to oor ainsells, and whaur will
you get the like of us?” It is clear from this that McCabe was a Scot. His toast
was like the Highlanders’ prayer, “Lord, send us a guid conceit o’ oorsels!” Of
the Daly family we have much to say in a future article.
Sarah Jones who died on October 10,
1867, aged 49, was the wife of John Jones, who kept the St. Patrick’s Tavern in
Queen Street, where Tronson’s shop is today. Old residents speak of her as a
fine specimen of a woman, and a great favourite.
Two children, one two years and the other four months, died on December
3, 1864. Their parents were the once well known Mr. And Mrs. Darragh of Kangaroo
Point, an old time honored family, for many years in the butchering and hotel
trades at the Point.
Catherine Sneyd, who died aged 46, on July 23, 1858, was the wife of
Samuel Sneyd, the first chief constable and jailer in Brisbane. He was a Baptist
and she was a Roman Catholic. On the day of her funeral the service was to be
conducted by the Rev. Dean Signey who waited at the grave for an hour after the
appointed time, and then went home. When the coffin arrived, the service had to
be read by a layman, and much strong feeling was shown for some times afterwards
through the absence of a qualified priest. Mrs. Sneyd had nine children and on
her grave is this verse:
religion that can give
Sweetest pleasure while we
religion must supply,
comfort when we die.”
The Sneyds lived in a house
in Adelaide Street between the present Parcels Post and Finney Isles corner,
where was the first bougainvillea vine ever grown in Queensland.
A few readers will remember a wild young Irishman named James McGowan who had a farm at Lytton and was killed off his horse on February 18, 1875, aged 29. There was nothing McGowan loved but a fight. He was always “blue moulded for want of a ” and would offer cheerfully offer to fight all hands, anywhere, at any time. On one occasion he took possession of a Methodist Church, and challenged the whole male congregation to mortal combat. The Methodists regarded James as a man possessed of devils, and fled. He was a fine type of fighting Irishman, and we mourn over the grave of that young warrior cut off untimely in his youth. We miss these fiery spirits at the peaceful elections of today. His sister, now dead, married Adam Fiebig, who still owns the old Crown hotel in George Street. Fiebig still has a great veneration for his dead wife.
James Cash, who died on December 15, 1870, aged 68, was an old pioneer
who was farming and timber getting at the Pine River, where “Cash’s Crossing” is
still a landmark in the district.
In the same grave is Mary McQuinney, his wife’s mother, who died on May
20, 1870, and his daughter Mary Ann, wife of Pat Hughes, who died on November
23, 1872, aged only 21. An appalling number of young wives, under 26 years of
age, died in those early days, apparently from bad nursing, bad medical
attendance, or no attendance at all. Ignorant midwives have filled many
Under one stone is Patrick Mooney, a Tipperary man, who died on September
20, 1851, aged 51, also his eldest daughter Mary Scanlan, who died on April 6,
1873, aged 40, and James Mooney, his eldest son, who died on August 31, 1873,
aged 44. Mooney was a fine specimen of a man, six feet four, who kept a hotel at
the corner of Russell and Stanley Streets, South Brisbane. Mary Scanlan was
the wife of Jeremiah Scanlan, who kept the Queensland Hotel in Edward Street,
about 25 yards below the present Metropolitan, then kept by Mrs. Duncan. Jerry
was an old policeman from New South Wales. He did well in Brisbane, and owned both the
Queensland and Metropolitan hotels. Opposite Jerry was the once fashionable
Menzies boarding-house, which still stands there, but the Menzies are both dead.
One daughter married Thomas Bryce, of the Carrying Company, and another married
West, the merchant, of Townsville. One of Jerry’s nieces, a Miss Cuneen, married
Ferdinand Papi, an Italian, the present head teacher of the Woolloongabba State
School, and became mother of Bertram Papa, the lawyer, and the fair Amy Papi, a
name known in the social columns.
A Daniel Tracey, who died on October 4, 1853, aged 55, and his widow
Catherine on September 3, 1871, were a couple of fine people who lived in
Margaret Street, and their daughters, very handsome girls, all died young. One
daughter, Mrs. Brown, died on October 20, 1866, aged 30, and Ann on November 30,
1869 aged 22. The stone over the grave was erected by the daughter Bridget, “in
affectionate remembrance of her dear parents and sisters.” She, too, had only a
Alice Higham, (pronounced Hyam), who died on August 8, 1872, at the age
of 80, was the wife of Higham, who was a timber getter on the Tweed River in the
early days. They both came out in Governor Darling’s time. She was a grand old
woman, the soul of honesty and hospitality.
Christopher Weir, who died on July 23, 1873, aged 61, was a cabman who
once kept a hotel out beyond the Hospital, on the Bowen Bridge Road. Michael
Weir also kept the same hotel. It was a great resort of the young bloods of
those days, and many a lively scene was enacted in that now forgotten house,
which has long ceased to exist.
We find that another cabman, still alive, the well known Jack Sweeney, of
the George Street stand, buried his young wife Catherine, aged 25, and her
infant son, on July 24, 1869. Sweeney was once a very smart policeman stationed
at the Towers, Ravenswood, and Cooktown.
Honora Thomas placed a stone over her husband, John Thomas, who died on
April 3, 1864. They kept an hotel in Queen Street, where Alexander Stewart and
Sons’ warehouse stands today. The same house was kept as the “Donnybrook Hotel”
by a Mat Stewart, a very unusual name in hotel keeping. On the grave of Thomas
lost, not lost, but gone before,
that land of peace and rest,
in God for evermore,
hope to meet together blest.”
Widows as a rule, lack a sense of logic, or they would not so often
consign their departed husbands to where they apparently meet with peace and
rest for the first time. In this case, too, the poetry is deplorably defective.
It is the kind of verse that is composed in a hurry while you wait.
Margaret, wife of Thomas Faulkner, died on January 18, 1869, aged 41. One
of her grand daughters is the wife of Under Secretary Brady, of the Works
There is a handsome stone over the grave of Francis Murphy, who died on
August 15, 1872, but so far no information
concerning him is available.
There is one peculiar inscription over the grave of a young wife, named
Janet Murphy, who was born at Grafton on April 3, 1853, and died at Brisbane on November
18,8172. She was thus only 17 years and eight months old, and the stone
loving wife, a mother dear,
faithful friend lies buried here,
loss is great which we sustain,
Heaven we hope to meet again.”
There is said to have been a John Murphy for many years a messenger in
the Lands Office, where he was succeeded by Gamble. Janet was the wife of a John
An old military warrior is represented by Patrick John Burke, of the
56th Queen’s Own Regiment. He died on March 17, 1867, aged 80 years.
Doubtless he did some hard fighting in that in that famous old regiment.
Robert Eaton, who died on December 2, 1861, aged 62, was a compositor on
the “Courier,” at the corner of Charlotte and George Streets. The old office is
now a boarding-house. What ghosts of old compositors must meander in silence
through the rooms when all the boarders are asleep! Eaton’s mother followed him
to the grave on April 2, 1874, aged 74. Remarkable is the number of those whose
age is the same as the year of their death.
Joseph Brown, who died on January 29, 1868, aged only 33, was a drayman,
and “a good, true man,” as an old colonist describes him, who lived out at
John Ede buried a child aged five on January 14, 1851. Ede was a watchman
in Queen Street. One son, Willie Ede, is today a cabman at the Central Station,
and one is a vanman.
Ellen Lonergan, who died on November 27, 1870, aged 25 (another at the
fatal age), was wife of John Lonergan, still a drayman in the Valley. His second
wife was a Miss McIver, sister of McIver, a well known blacksmith in the Valley
came, he went, like the Simoom,
harbinger of fate and gloom,
Beneath whose widely wasting
very cypress droops to death,
tree, still sad when others grief has fled,
only constant mourner o’er the dead.”
Those unhappy types of men and women who rise in the night to take a dose
of medicine, and make the deadly mistake of selecting the wrong bottle, are
represented by John Guilfoyle, who died on January 24, 1874, aged 27. He was a
compositor at the Government Printing Office, and the headstone informs us that
it is “ a tribute of respect to his memory by the men of the Government Printing
Office.” He was only a young man, but was married, and his four year old son had
died on March 8, 1871. The father of John died on November 7, 1858, aged 41. He
was a quarryman, who worked on the old Kangaroo Point quarry, where the Naval
Stores are today. The son who died had risen from sleep, and instead of a bottle
of medicine prescribed by Dr. Bell, he got a bottle of carbolic acid, drank some
before the dreadful mistake was discovered, and died a cruel death.
Even doctors fall victims to these fatal errors. Some readers will
remember Dr. Clark, who once practised in Stanthorpe. He went to live in a New
South Wales town, we believe it was Gulgong, and one night he rose to get some
medicine, took the wrong bottle, and when his wife awoke in the morning, he was
lying dead beside her.
A John Meillon, who died on August 1, 1862, had a brother Joseph Meillon,
who was educated as a lawyer and in 1869, went to practice at Grafton on the
Clarence River, the other lawyer being George Foott, who had succeeded James
Lionel Michael, a well known literary man who was drowned in front of his on
house. Henry Kendall, the poet, was a clerk in Michael’s office. Foott’s wife,
his second wife, was the widow of Boulanger, a name known to the music world as
a brilliant composer.
Sarah Jones, who died on October 10, 1867, aged 40, was the wife of John
Jones, who kept St. Patrick’s Tavern, in Queen Street.
There is a neat stone over Francis Murray, who died on August 15, 1873,
aged 37. He had a cabinet makers shop in Queen Street, next to Paddy Mayne’s
butcher’s shop, which stood on the present site of the British Empire Hotel.
Beside Murray are his two girl children, Isabella Jane, died June 23, 1870, and
Annie Maria died October 23, 1873, one three and one sixteen months. Murray was
once Mayor of Brisbane,
was also fairly well to do in cash, and advanced a considerable sum to Sir
Maurice O’Connell, who was unable to repay it and the Government had to overcome
the difficulty with a special appropriation.
Paddy Mayne died in the backroom of that Queen Street butcher’s shop, and
Bishop O’Quinn and Joe Darragh, who was a cousin of the Bishop, were with him
when his will was being made. Mrs. Mayne was supposed to be a Protestant, and
Mayne had a big powerful coachman, also a Protestant. When the will was being
made, Mrs. Mayne suspected that she was not receiving due consideration, and she
sent the coachman in to remove the Bishop and Darragh, and removed they were.
However she had no reason to complain of her share in the will. She afterwards
gave the coachman a farm at Moggill, and conferred an annuity on Tom Slaughter,
the accountant. Both Mayne and his wife were very good hearted liberal people,
who did many generous acts. It is a shame that Paddy had to confess to a murder
at Kangaroo Point, in his early days, for which an innocent man was hung- the
death bed confession haunted his family to their graves. Mrs. Mayne was a fine
specimen of a woman, and an excellent wife and mother. She is said to have sent
for a priest when dying, and to have admitted that she was a Catholic.
Near to the grave of Mayor Murray, is that of Elizabeth Baines, first
wife of another Mayor, the E. J. Baines of a previous article. She died on March
3, 1863, aged 39.
A boy named William Costelloe, who died on May 11, 1861, aged 15, was the
son of a man who had held a high position in the Inland Customs’ Revenue
Department of Ireland.
Eliza Quinn, widow of James Quinn, kept a hotel at German Station. Quinn
was formerly a clerk with George Edmonstone, one of whose daughters married John
Markwell. Edmonstone was a Queen Street butcher, a genial, amiable, old
gentleman, who became a member of Parliament. The present writer had many a chat
with him from 1875 to 1877.
On January 1, 1865, D. H. O’Leary buried his infant son Daniel Michael.
Daniel senior was a son of Tom O’Leary, the father of Jack O’Leary, for years
clerk of the Cairns Divisional Board, and now Traffic Manager on the Musgrave
Tramway Company’s line from Cairns to Harvey’s Creek, on the Russell River.
Jack’s mother, a dear old lady is still alive and well, and a regular attendant
at the Catholic Church in Brisbane. The O’Leary family
were mostly brunettes and Jack, as every Cairns man knows, has a decidedly
auburn tinge in his hair.
Catherine Queely, who died on January 5, 1865, aged 16, was the daughter
of a shoemaker who came over from New South Wales, and opened a shop in Albert
Street, a few doors from Queen Street. The daughter was a fine specimen of a
girl, and her death from typhoid fever nearly broke Queely’s heart. A brother of
Queely was killed out on the Dawson on the same day as the 19 people were killed
by aboriginal attack on Horatio Wills’ Cullen-La-ringo Station, on the Nogoa,
October 17, 1861. We have stood over the mass grave in which 16 of the 19 were
In four fragments is the stone that stood over the grave of Kate Agnes
Hickey, who died on October 28, 1863. Hickey was a resident of the Valley.
Richard Belford, who died on April 28, 1865, was once editor of the
“Courier,”, and afterwards editor of the “North Australian,” the leading paper
in Ipswich of the early days. Bishop O’Quinn brought that paper to Brisbane, and it is
represented by the Catholic paper, “Australian” of the present day.
Daniel Lyons, who died in 1865, aged 60, was father of Daniel Lyons, a
saddler in Turbot Street in the early days, and brother of James Mooney, a
hotelkeeper in South Brisbane, one of whose
sisters became the wife of J. M. O’Keefe, ex-M.L.A., for the Lockyer, a man
likely to bound into the aroma with a wild Hibernian war cry at any moment.
John Ahearn erected a neat stone over the grave of his brother Denis
Ahearn, a native of Donickmore, County Cork, who died on February 12, 1875, aged
32, the fatal age of the Ahearn families, as three of the men died at that
When Camille Desmoulins, of the French Revolution, was before the
revolutionary tribunal, and asked his name, he replied, “I am the age of the
‘bon sans culotte,’ Jesus" – an age fatal to revolutionists!”
Apparently the age of 32 was as fatal to the Ahearns as 37 to the French
patriots. These Ahearns, who were carpenters, finally left for California. The
Ahearn family mentioned in the last article are still represented. Two of the
girls married two of the brothers of Cahill, the present Commissioner of Police,
and both of the brothers died. The widow of one is now the wife of the well
known and popular hotelkeeper Denis O’Connor, who has given his name to
“O’Connor Boatshed,” and is an enthusiast in rowing and other athletic circles.
A brother of the sisters is now on Charters Towers.
The J. W. Buxton who once had a stationery and fancy goods shop in Queen
Street, and whose wife died on January 21, 1867, was a man of considerable
means. He became infatuated with an actress, and fled away with her, leaving a
very fine wife, who was immeasurably the superior of the actress in physique,
intelligence and character. Why a man sometimes deserts a splendid woman for a
worthless specimen, or a woman forsakes a splendid man for a contemptible weed,
are two conundrums beyond the reach of human intelligence.
Jessie Lamont, a widow, died on April 3, 1866, aged 51.
The stone records:
comfort Christians when your friends,
Jesus fall asleep,
better being never ends,
then dejected weep?
inconsolable as those
whom no hope is given?
is the messenger of peace,
calls the soul to Heaven.”
One of the daughters, Marion Flora, died on May 23, 1873, aged only 29.
She was the wife of James Chapman, father of Ebenezer Chapman, now a builder in
Fortitude Valley. Jessie Lamont lies in the Presbyterian ground, near to
Margaret Elizabeth Bethune, wife of David Lachlan Brown, head of the firm of D.
L. Brown and Co. He died not long ago in Toowoomba, and his first wife died on
April 29, 1869, aged 33, at “Langlee Bank,” Bowen Bridge Road. The stone
“Thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
His second wife, still living, was a daughter of the Rev. George Wight, once Immigration Lecturer.
George Lindsay, described as “son of the late George Lindsay, of
Aberdeen,” died on April 20, 1873. He was an elderly man, confidential clerk to
John Bourne, who built the Brisbane bridge of
Lindsay died in the year the bridge was opened. There was a great
demonstration at the opening, and Dr. Carr Boyd wrote a long celebration poem in
the “Courier,” over the “nom de plume” of “Ralph de Peverial.” Boyd is represented today by his
youngest son, Gerald, who is in the Lands Office, and the second son, known to
the press as “Potjostler,” is in West Australia. The eldest son David was a
surveyor. His widow is wife of the present Dr. Brown of Rockhampton. She was one
of several sisters, all handsome women, daughters of a Mr. Ransome who was once
C.P.S. at Goodna, and lived at Little Ipswich.
The Jeremiah Daly referred to before as a chum of merchant John McCabe,
was father of the once well known barrister and Crown Prosecutor, Tom Daly, one
of whose sisters was Judge Miller’s first wife. Another married the Hon. Sydney
Dick Melbourne, and one married a son of Christopher Newton, head of the Sydney
firm of that name. They were all fine looking women.
Buried somewhere in the catholic cemetery is a man named
Barrett, who died in 1867. Barrett had come out in the last convict ship, which
landed him at Sydney in 1840. That ship was called the “Eden,” a facetious name
for a convict vessel. Barrett had revealed a conspiracy on board, and as a
reward he received a reprieve. After five years in Sydney and Illawarra, he came
to Moreton Bay, and joined a party of timber getters on the Tweed. One of the
party was a man named Robert Cox, a victim of one of the most notorious murders
in Queensland history.
Cox and Barrett came to Brisbane on a visit in March
1848, and stayed at Sutton’s Bush Commercial Hotel. On Kangaroo Point, corner of
Holman and Main Streets.
On Sunday night, March 26, Cox was murdered under diabolical
circumstances. His body was cut up and his head cut off. The head was found by a
dog, in a baker’s new oven, in a building erected for John Campbell, father of
the present Amity Point Campbell. A man named George Cummins found the trunk of
the body on the mud foreshore of the river, where it was left by the retreating
tide. Parts of the body and three shirts, soaked with blood, were found in a
well. The cook at Sutton’s Hotel was a man named William Fyfe, who was a friend
of Cox, who was staying with another friend, named Moseley. Fyfe and Moseley,
and a butcher named Lynch, were arrested, but the final proceedings were taken
against Fyfe only. The enquiry lasted five days, and some remarkable evidence
was given, all reported in the “Courier” of that date. Fyfe was committed for
trial, sent to Sydney, tried and found guilty, and hanged, protesting his
innocence to the last.
He had written a long speech for the scaffold, but was not allowed to
deliver it, but the public heard it afterwards.
Peccavirrus! But rave not
And let a Sabbath song
Go up to God so
The dead may feel no
The sweet Lenore hath gone
With hope, that flew
Leaving thee wild for the
Who should have been thy
For her the fair and
Who now so lowly lies
The life upon her yellow hair,
And death upon her
The life still there upon
And death within her
Allan Poe’s “Lenore.”
The Church of England cemetery is on the slope of
a ridge, on the south side of the Paddington cemeteries, enclosed with a paling
fence, in a fair state of preservation. So far as examined the oldest grave
dates back to 1847, when Samuel Henry Copperthwaite was buried, on May 27. The
most recent graves are dated in 1875, so apparently all funerals after that went
to Toowong. Except on three or four graves the lantana has been kept out, and
the ground is clear. But there is
the same dismal spectacle of fallen and leaning and broken stones, as in the
other cemeteries. Evidently grass fires have killed some of the trees. Among
those that remain are a few that date back to the start. There is a silky oak at
least three feet in diameter, and a fine grey ironbark very little less. The
others are Moreton Bay ash, blue gum, cypress pine, and a few figs. The old road
winding through the ground is still clearly defined, though unused for over
thirty years. What a long line of hearses and sad processions passed along that
road, in the vanished years that saw so many “white robed forms of friends long
given, in agony to the earth and heaven.” There must be thousands of dead in
that graveyard, since the burial of Miss Hill, Walter Hill’s daughter, in the
Toowong cemetery in 1871
up to the present day, that graveyard has received 29,600 dead, representing a
period of 26 years. At Paddington, the Church of England ground received bodies
for 28 years. The graves are in rows over the whole area, probably not more than
one in fifty with a headstone. Conspicuous here, as in other cemeteries, is the
small number of old people, the great number of children, and young men and
young women. The great majority are under 40.
On entering the gate, the eye is caught at once by three graves that call back many historic memories. A blue granite eight foot high monolith, the Egyptian symbol of the Supreme God, stands on the grave of Arthur Stuart Bernays, the eight month old child of Lewis Adolphus and Mary Bernays. This child died on May 16, 1865, or 42 years ago. The fact is recorded on a square of marble screwed on near the top of the monolith, which is a miniature of that Cleopatra’s Needle that stands 68½ feet high and weighs over 185 tons. As that was sculptured more than 1500 years before Cleopatra was born, it is not clear why it bears her name. Bernays, the father of that child of 1865, is the present Clerk of the Assembly, a position he has held since the first Parliament of Queensland opened, in the old convict built stone building in Queen Street, afterwards the Supreme Court.
We may marvel at the fact the L. A. Bernays has seen all our Governments
and their supporters come and go, and sat and listened to their oratory – and is
still alive! He is probably immortal and will be sitting in the house a thousand
Close to the gate is one of the neatest and best kept tombs in the cemetery. It bears the name
of Medora Ann Little, who died on February 27, 1872, aged 37. The Spanish name
of Medora was probably taken from the Medora of Byron’s “Corsair.” Mrs. Little
was the wife of the once well known Crown Solicitor, Little, who tells us on the
“Her children rise up and
called her blessed,
Her husband also and he
We cannot improve on those
old eulogiums of the Hebrew prophets. They were eloquent and expressive.
Contrast this zenith of epitaph with the nadir on that of the gravestone in
“Sacred to the memory of
Who died for peace and
His wife was constantly
scoldin’ and scoffin’,
So he sought for repose in a
twelve dollar coffin.”
Or we may go to a graveyard
in classic Cambridge, and find the following:
“Here lies the body of Mary
Who was so very pure
She cracked the shell of her
And hatched herself a
It is remarkable that the
British race, in Britain and America, is responsible for the most ridiculous
epitaphs on record. No other race appears to have placed puns or sarcasms on the
graves of the dead. Who but a Yankee would record this on a gravestone in
“beneath this stone our baby
He neither cries nor
He lived for one and forty
And cost us forty
And we go to a grave in
Cheltenham for a specimen of what the rustic chaw-bacon of England could do on a
“Here lies I and my two
Killed by drinking
If we had stuck to Epsom
We shouldn’t be lying in
No such epitaphs are
possible on an Australian tombstone. Such a stone would be capsized, or smashed,
as being an insult to the dead.
After this digression, we return to an iron railing enclosing two
remarkable pioneers, prominent in early Queensland. These graves have also been
well kept. Here lies Richard Jones, M.L.C., of Sydney, who died on November 6,
1852, aged 70. He was known to the public of that time as “Merchant Jones,” a
man who invested a lot of capital in squatting in the first years of the Darling
Downs. The first sheep that ever came over the range, belonged to Jones. They
were brought through Cunningham’s Gap, in 1842, by a man named Summerville, who
was Superintendent for Jones. He took up Tenthill and Helidon stations, and put
the sheep there. Another superintendent named Rogers, at the same time took up
Grantham station, and took there a flock of sheep owned by George Mocatta, who
took up Innes Plains on the Logan.
Writing in 1876, John Campbell, who took up Westbrook in 1842, said, “I
had resided for some months very quietly on the Downs (1842), intent on getting
my cattle broken into their runs, when I was one day astonished at hearing a
French horn being blown, and looking out over the plain (Westbrook) saw a single
horseman approaching. Upon coming up he proved to be Mr. Summerville, the
superintendent for Mr. Richard Jones, whose stock it appeared was on its way to
what is now Helidon station.”
That is the Richard Jones whose last sleep is in the Paddington cemetery.
Buried beside him is John Stephen Ferriter, who died on October 21, 1865,
aged 63, another squatter of the early days. Ferriter and Uhr were partners. One
of these Uhrs was once Sergeant-at-Arms in the Assembly. John Uhr was killed by
the blacks at Sandy Creek, near Gatton. Other Uhrs were officers in the native
police, and well known in the north especially Darcy Uhr. Pioneering squatting
was a different business from squatting of today. The number of whites known to
be killed by blacks in the first ten years of settlement were 254.
When Rogers went to Grantham station, near the present Laidley, he took
possession of about 400 sheets of bark the blacks had stripped for their own wet
weather camps. These had been taken off ironbark trees, after the rough outside
was knocked off. Rogers gave nothing in return, and Campbell said that this act
of mean robbery led to the murder of at least seventeen white men, mostly
Then the Sydney Government sent up a detachment of soldiers, who were
quartered at the foot of the range, to protect dray traffic. The camp was long
known as the “Soldiers’ Barracks.” Those were days when John Kemp estimated the
fighting strength of the Helidon district tribes at twelve hundred men. If one
had only complete reminiscences of Richard Jones and Stephen Ferriter, the two
men side by side in the Paddington cemetery, what an
interesting picture they would give us of those long vanished old, wild, rough
“Tell us ye dead!
Will none of you in pity
reveal the secret
Of what ye are, and what we dread to be!”
When Jones died he was member for the Stanley boroughs, in what is now Queensland, in the Legislative Council of New South Wales. He had been chairman of the Bank of New South Wales, Sydney. He died out at New Farm, and the body was brought by water to the Queen’s wharf, from whence a funeral procession of about 500 people followed it to the cemetery.
The chief mourners were Thomas Jones, J. S. Ferriter, Daniel Peterson,
and William Uhr.
Jones , who was a native of Wales, and came to Sydney in 1819, married in
1823, Mary Louisa Peterson, by whom he had two sons and four daughters.
His daughter, Mary Australia, married Captain W. B. O’Connell, Minister
The daughter, Louisa, married R. R. Mackenzie, once Premier.
Ferriter’s widow, a tall, handsome woman, resided for about 20 years in
No. 2, Hodgson Terrace, with a maid, who stayed beside her to the last.
The Uhr at the funeral, was
There was one E. B. Uhr, J.P., a squatter at Wide Bay.
A writer of 1854, says of Ferriter:
“John Stephen Ferriter,
R.N., was the Agent for Immigration, and lived in a cottage adjacent to the
stone barracks between George and William Streets, afterwards the Colonial
Treasurers’ Office. He was somewhat addicted to bad puns, but otherwise of a
kind and gentle disposition.”
Thomas Grenier, a youth of 17, who died on August 25, 1857, was the eldest son of Thomas and Mary Grenier, who kept a hotel at South Brisbane at that time. It was the chief resort of the squatters, and there was many a wild scene there. On one occasion some joker packed all the knives, spoons and forks from the breakfast table into a valise of old Captain Collins, who calmly rode away with them to the Logan, and got home before he discovered the contents.
In the meantime Grenier had the blacks’ camp searched, and much suspicion
fell upon innocent men, until choleric old Collins walked in, and banged all the
cutlery on the table, with language that nearly set fire to the house.
The Grenier family owned much property in South Brisbane, including Highgate
A 22 months old child of J. C. and Emily Vidgen, was buried on March 25,
1866. The mother is also dead. She was the first wife of the well known and much
liked secretary of the Brisbane Gas Company. She
was a Lancashire girl, but they were married in Scotland. Vidgen’s second wife
was a Miss Mossop.
In the notice of Crown Solicitor Robert Little, we omitted to mention
that his first wife was a Miss Geary, daughter of old Captain Geary. His second
was a Miss Bramston, sister of Bramston, once Attorney General – 1870 –74. He
also held a seat for three years in Herbert’s first ministry.
Bramston and R. G. W. Herbert, our first Premier, batched together in the
house well known as “Herston,” near the children’s hospital. The name was thus
constructed. They took the “Her” from Herbert, and the “Ston” from Bramston, and
made a blend of “Herston” out of the first and last syllables. G. P. M. Murray,
our ex-P.M. calls his house “Yarrum,” his own name reversed.
Amongst those buried in that Church of England cemetery, unknown and
unrecorded, is a man whose name calls back an episode of 1842. At that time,
there was an Eaton Vale station, on the Downs, a young Jackaroo named Barker,
who in after years became the Hon. Wm. Barker, of Tamrookum station, on the
Logan. An old man named Kelly and his wife and son, were traveling as hawkers,
and camped on the present site of Leyburn, then taken up as a station by Pitt
and Bonifant. This Pitt gave his name to the present Pittsworth, and one of his
daughters married the late Macdonald-Paterson.
Two men posing as shearers joined the hawking party. On the second night
out from Leyburn, these two persuaded young Kelly to sleep at their fire, and
shot him dead while he was asleep, their intention being to kill old Kelly and
his wife, and take all the property. But old Kelly heard the shot, got his gun
and went over to the camp. The two scoundrels ran away, and afterwards
separated. One went towards the Clarence, then called the “Big River,” and the
other, after going nearly to the Severn, doubled back to the Downs. He was a
small dark man with one eye, and his name was Selby. He went to Jimbour
woolshed, left there and went by Westbrook, on the way to the main range. Having
accidentally shot off one of his fingers, he made for Rosewood station, to have
his injury seen to by Dr. Goodwin. Young Barker was one of the pursuers on his
track. Selby left Rosewood and went towards the Logan, evidently making for the
Clarence. The hutkeeper on Telemon was a ticket-of-leave man, named Brown.
Barker gave him a description of Selby, and also told him there was a reward of
£100 for his capture, consequently Brown was on the lookout for him. Two days
afterwards, Selby walked up to the hut, and Brown recognised him at once.
He acted as a genial host to Selby, while he sent an aboriginal secretly
for assistance. Selby was taken to Maitland, tried and hanged, an act of justice
due directly to Barker and Brown. Brown died in 1856, in Brisbane, and lies in the
Paddington cemetery. He
got the reward and a free pardon for the capture of Selby.
Barker, and Murray-Prior, and C. R. Haly married three sisters named
Harper, all very handsome women. Prior’s wife was the mother of Mrs. Campbell
Praed, and Mrs. John Jardine.
‘We are no other than a moving row,
Of magic shadow shapes that
come and go,
Round with the sun illumined
In midnight by the Master of
But helpless pieces of the
game he plays,
Upon this chequer board of
nights and days,
Hither and thither moves,
and checks, and stays,
And one by one back in the
In one grave, which ought to
have received a little more attention, are Louisa Tully and her month old child
She was the first wife of the late William Alcock Tully, ex-Surveyor
General, and eldest daughter of the late Simeon Lord, of Eskdale station and son
of Simeon Lord, one of Sydney’s best known men seventy years ago. He was
generally known as “Merchant Lord.” The Eskdale Lords once lived in Tasmania,
where they had a station called Bona Vista, near Avoca. Fred Lord, of Brisbane, some years M.L.A.
for Stanley, was born at Bona Vista, on November 8, 1841. The station was once
stuck up by two notorious bushrangers named Dalton and Kelly. While they were
inside the house, Constable Buckmaster came onto the verandah. They fired
through a glass door and shot him dead, one ball striking him in the forehead.
Nobody else was hurt. Lord’s daughter, Louisa, was then a child. She was born
there in the year 1837, and died in Brisbane on February 20,
1866, aged 29. Her only sister married a Lieutenant Airey, who came to Sydney
and Brisbane as a
Lieutenant of Marines, in the Challenger with the Duke of Edinburgh, in 1868 and
1869. He became in after years, the late Lieutenant Colonel Airey, of Sydney.
One of the Challenger’s men died in Brisbane and is buried at
Paddington. His name was Percival Perkins Baskerville, Commander in the Royal
Navy. He died on March 1, 1869, aged 21.
One of Louisa Tully’s brothers, Robert Lord, was once member for Gympie.
His widow is the present wife of Sir Horace Tozer, Queensland’s Agent General.
Louisa Tully left two sons, one of whom is in ‘Frisco, and the other in Sydney.
Tully’s second wife was a Miss Darvall, sister of Anthony Darvall, for many
years manager of the A.J.S. Bank in Ipswich, and a candidate at the first
The first Mrs. Tully had five brothers, William, Robert, Frederick,
Alfred and Simeon. The first two are dead. Simeon, one of the owners of Eskdale,
has also an oyster farm at Lord’s Creek, Southport. One his daughters, Ruby
Lord, is at the convent school at Warwick, and exceptionally clever at
woodcarving and fancywork.
W. A. Tully, husband of Louisa, was once a very prominent Brisbane man. He was born in
Dublin in 1830 and graduated as a B.A. of Trinity College in 1852. In that year
he came to Tasmania, and met the Lord family. He stayed there until 1863 and
became Inspecting Surveyor in the Survey Office. In 1863 he came to Queensland,
and in 1864 was Commissioner for Lands in the Kennedy district. In 1864 he was
transferred to the Warrego. In 1866 he was appointed Chief Commissioner, and
then Under Secretary for Lands. In 1875 he became Acting Surveyor General, and
in 1883 was appointed Surveyor General. Finally he became a member of the Land
Board. He and the second wife, Miss Darvall died, and are buried together in
Sydney. The first wife, Louisa Lord, is alone in the Paddington cemetery.
Charles Henry Rawnsley, who died on January 16, 1873, aged 55, was a
staff surveyor who surveyed much of the country around Brisbane.
He purchased land and built “Witton Manor” on it, at Indooroopilly, the
house long occupied by D. C. McConnell, and afterwards by Andrew Bogle.
Rawnsley took some interest in natural history, and was the cause of a
curious discussion in the “Courier,” on a supposed new bower bird which was
actually named “Ptilonorhynchus Rawnsleyi,” and held that name until Gerard
Krefft, of the Sydney Museum, proved it to be an immature male Regent bird, with
only part of the yellow colors displayed. The Rawnsley’s “satin winged bower
bird” retired into oblivion. Charles Coxen, Sylvester Diggles, and Gerard
Krefft, were the principal writers
in this old time long dead controversy. One of Diggles’ sons is in the Electric
William Grosvenor Armstrong was the year old child of Octavius (and Jessie Augusta) Armstrong, one of our veteran police magistrates, still in service at the Central Police Court, and residing at South Brisbane. The child died on May 29, 1872, and the stone says,
“I know, Oh Lord, that Thy judgments are right,
and that Thy faithfulness hast afflicted me,”
one of the conundrums common
The name of Georgina Hely, who died on September 10, 1866, as the widow
of F. A. Hely, of New South Wales, at the age of 71, recalls an old and
remarkable family of the early days. Hovenden Hely, a giant of six feet six, was
one of the men who started with Leichhardt on his second expedition. He and
Leichhardt and Daniel Druce (“Old Ironbark”), left Sydney for Raymond Terrace,
on the Hunter River, in the steamer “Thistle,” on September 30, 1846. From there
they came overland to Jimbour. However, Hely’s experience with Leichhardt were
not pleasant, and the expedition returned from the Mackenzie River as a
disastrous failure. When Leichhardt started west on his last trip, in 1848, and
no traces of him were discernible for three years, Hovenden Hely went out in
1852 with a search expedition, but his two blacks deserted him, and he returned
to the coast, after being within two days journey of where the wild blacks told
his own blackboys the Leichhardt party were all killed.
Hovenden Hely had a number of sons, who ranged in height from 6ft to 6ft
4in., and three of them are well known in Brisbane. The Georgina Hely,
of the Paddington cemetery, was mother of the
wife of the late W. L. G. Drew. She was a tall handsome woman.
William Yaldwyn, the now retired police magistrate, of Brisbane, buried a six weeks
old child on May 12, 1867. Yaldwyn’s second wife is a daughter of the genial
Phil Agnew, Post and Telegraph Master of Dunwich. The child of 1867 was named
Duncan Francis. Yaldwyn was one of the early squatters of the Dawson, and was
out there in 1861, when 19 people were killed on Wills’ station on the
Mary Ellen, the wife of T. H. B. Barron, was a daughter of Arthur Wilcox
Manning, once Under Secretary. This was the Manning whom a relative named
Bowerman, also in the service, struck on the head with a tomahawk, and badly
wounded. Parliament in an hour of unreasoning sentimentalism, rushed through a
“Manning Pension Bill,” giving him a pension of £600 per annum, and £300 yearly
to his widow if she survive him. Manning died after drawing about £20,000 and
his widow still draws the £300.
Bowerman’s tomahawk will probably cost Queensland about £30,000. And
Manning went to live in Sydney, and not a penny of the pension has ever been
spent in Queensland.
Barron’s first wife, Miss Manning, died on December 21, 1866. His second
wife was a daughter of the once Registrar-General Blakeney, and she is still
alive. Both wives were fine looking women. The only daughter of the second wife
is married to a son of Sir Arthur Hunter Palmer.
Charlotte McKeand, who died on April 19, 1865, was the wife of a giddy
financial agent, McKeand, who had an office at the top of Queen Street, beside
where a chemist named Drew had a shop, near where Dr. Hugh Bell resided, at the
corner of Queen and George Streets. McKeand made much money and lost it again in
a fashion common with giddy men, and all that is left to perpetuate his name is
his wife’s grave at Paddington. He was the sixty per cent magnate of that
period. He owned the land now occupied by James Cowlinshaw and Herbert Perry, on
the Breakfast Creek road.
Henry Kingsmill Shaw and his wife Helen, buried a year old infant on
November 29, 1874. Shaw was one of the managers of George Raff and Co., and had
a tragical death in a lagoon near Dalby. He stripped to swim in after some ducks
he had shot, became entangled in the weeds, and was drowned. The present writer
remembers the sad event. The widow married again, and kept Auckland Villa, Tank
Street, as a boarding house.
Tom Haynes, who died on June 12, 1875, was coachman for Governor Cairns,
who put a large, horizontal slab, with a cross, over his grave, and an
inscription to say it was a record by the Governor.
Charles Street, who died on September 23, 1873, aged 42, was engaged at
Pettigrew’s Sawmills in William Street. His brother was father of the Street
sisters who had an artificial flower and dressmaking shop in the building now
occupied by the Protector of Aboriginals. One of these sisters married J. G.
Drake, and another was the wife of Inspector A. D. Douglas.
Daniel Weinholt, over whom is a fine marble monument, died at Cleveland,
on February 28, 1865, aged 43 years, leaving a widow and four children. He was a
son of the then late J. B. Weinholt, of Kent and Weinholt, who were among the
early squatting families of Queensland. The monument was erected by the brothers
Thomas Burnett Temple, M.R.C.S., who died on June 10, 1864, aged 32, was
a young doctor who came out for his health, and died of consumption. His mother
lies beside him, and Cecil Burnett Temple, a child of 13 months. The mother died
on November 24, 1873, aged 50. The grave has a marble slab on a large stone
Inside one railing is a row of five headstones, over F. J. Barton, and his two infants, Charles Samways Warry, Albert Barton, Thomas Symes Warry, and Thomas Warry. F. J. Barton, who was a doctor, died on August 31, 1863. He was married to a Miss Warry, who, as Barton’s widow, married Dr. Hugh Bell, and, on a trip to Scotland, was lost in the Fiery Star, which was burned at sea, on Good Friday, 1866.
Barton was one of the first doctors of the Brisbane Hospital, when it was in George Street. Albert Barton, who died on February 23, 1864, was his brother. The stone says:
“I shall be satisfied when I awake with Thy likeness,”
Thomas Symes Warry was a chemist in Queen Street. He died, unmarried, on August 19, 1864, aged 42. The stone says:
“Blessed is he that considereth the poor.”
Also this remarkable
“’Tis strange that those we
lean on most,
Those in whose laps our
limbs are nursed,
Fall into shadow, soonest
Those we love first are
God gives u s love,
something to love,
He lends us, but when love
To ripeness, that on which
Falls off, and love is left
This Warry was a humorist. On one occasion he induced Billy Brookes to
climb a greasy pole in front of his shop in Queen Street. Those were days when
Billy was not the severe good templar he became in after years. The pole
climbing scene was exhilarating. Billy, with the aid of sandpaper on his hands,
and got about half way, then slid down with great celerity. Then he and Warry
went over to call on “Pretty Polly,” at the Treasury Hotel, to drink confusion
to greasy pole climbing.
“Pretty Polly” afterwards married a man named Moffit, and they kept the
Royal Hotel, opposite the Post Office for years. After she became a widow, Polly
went to Charters Towers, and died there.
Thomas Warry, senior, died at Gladstone, on February 7, 1869, aged
The mother of the late Tom Pratten, of the Railway Department, was a Miss
Emily Gertrude, was the year old child of Sheppard and Emily Smith, and
died on February 24, 1862. Smith was the first manager of the Bank of New South
Wales. He was a tall, fine specimen of a man, about six feet two, and his wife
was a little woman. The smallest women never seem to hesitate about facing
Richard James Coley, who died on September 12, 1864, aged 60, was
Sergeant-at-Arms in the Legislative Assembly. Coley came to a tragical end at
the cottage still occupied in George Street, close to Harris Terrace. His son
came to an equally tragical end in after years. One daughter was married to a
squatter named Thompson, on the Dawson, and another married C. B. Dutton, once
Minister for Lands, Minister for Railways, and Minister for Works and Mines, in
the first Griffith Ministry. Beside Coley are his two little girls, of 8 and 13.
The first died on March 4, 1845, the other on June 30, 1851.
dost thou build thy halls, son of the winged days?
short years and the blast of the desert comes
howls in thy empty court”
“A spirit passed before me, I beheld
face of Immortality unveiled;
sleep came down on every eye save mine,
there it stood, all formless but divine,
my bones the creeping flesh did quake,
my damp hair stiffened, thus it spake,
man more just than God? Is man more pure
He who deems even Seraphs insecure
Creatures of clay, vain
dwellers in the dust,
moth survives you, and are ye more just?
of a day, ye wither ere the night
Heedless and blind to
Wisdom’s wasted light.”
Byron’s Paraphrase from
A few extra particulars concerning the
old historic Hely family. Frederic Augustus Hely, whose wife lies in the
Paddington cemetery, was
the first Superintendent in Chief of convicts in Sydney. He died in 1835, and
was buried in a vault in his own orchard at Gosford, Broken Bay. His wife was
Georgina Lindsey Bucknell. One of their sons was Hovenden Hely, the explorer,
who was out with Leichhardt in 1846, and went to search for him in 1852.
One son was Henry Lindsey Hely, a barrister, who became a Queensland
District Court judge.
One daughter married the late W. L. G. Drew, then a paymaster in the
Fleet. He came to Queensland, joined the Civil Service, and his last position
was Chairman of the Civil Service Board.
Another Hely girl married Edward Strickland, a major in the Royal Artillery, and afterwards Sir Edward Strickland, Commissary- General, who served in the Zulu War of 1878.
Another girl married Captain G. K. Mann, Royal Horse Artillery, who after retiring from that position, became Superintendent of the Penal Settlement on Cockatoo Island, Sydney Harbor, where he planned and superintended the docks.
Hovenden Hely was the father of the six tall sons of whom one is Major
Hely, at present in the Government Savings Bank.
These are a few results from F. A. Hely’s marriage in the long ago with
the woman who lies in the Paddington cemetery.
Mary Grace Sheppard, who died on June 28, 1869, was the wife of Edmund
Sheppard, judge of the Metropolitan District Court. Her infant son, Alfred
Henry, had died on October 15, 1866. One of our chief Government officers tells
the following gruesome story:
In 1869 a young fellow named Davidson was out one night with some boon
companions, and they were on their way home late at night. Davidson lived in
North Brisbane, the
others on the South side. He went with them to the ferry, and they advised him
to go home. The ferry boatman was a Chinaman, named George. A punt also ran
across on a rope, there being no bridge. They pushed the boat off, and Davidson
took off his coat and trousers and dived in head first after it. The Chinaman
merely said, ‘Oh, let him swim out,’ and pulled away. Davidson was drowned, and
the police dragged for two days without success. On the third day, the ferry
boat left the steps with Mrs. Sheppard, then on the eve of becoming a mother,
two other passengers, and the officer who tells the story. When a short distance
out the punt was coming in from the south side. Suddenly, at the stern of the
boat, the body of Davidson rose from the river, head first, shot up, until
breast high, glared, as it were, for a second with those ghastly, glassy,
staring eyes, turned over on the back, and floated away. The second it rose, the
officer, with remarkable presence of mind, instantly caught Mrs. Sheppard by
both arms, to prevent her turning around to look at the body, and held her for
at least a hundred yards, speaking to her softly, and telling her he would give
a clear explanation. The judge afterwards thanked him earnestly, expressing a
belief that he had save his wife’s life. Alas! Poor Mrs. Sheppard got puerperal
fever after the birth of that baby, and lies there in the Paddington cemetery, so her life went
A young Church of England clergyman is thus recorded: “Jesu Mercy. In
memory of the departed John Brakenridge, M. A. of Christ’s College, Cambridge,
Clerk in Holy Orders. Died March 26, 1861, aged 31.” He was one of the many
young men who have come out to Queensland in that advanced stage of consumption
which no climate can cure.
Amos Braysher, who died on
September 27, 1871, aged 35, was the landlord of “Braysher’s Hotel,” now the
Metropolitan, in Edward Street. His widow married Duncan, and after Duncan died,
Mrs. Duncan kept the hotel for years.
Mrs. Duncan’s Metropolitan Hotel was the favorite house for squatters in
those days, and probably then the best hotel in Brisbane.
Buried at Paddington, is an old fellow named Marvel, perhaps a descendant
of the famous Andrew Marvel. He was one of the band of ticket-of-leave men who
came to the Darling Downs in 1840, with Patrick Leslie, when he took up the
first station, Toolburra. In after years, Leslie wrote that “they were 20 as
good and game men as ever I saw, and worth any 40 I have ever seen since.”
Marvel was a chum of Peter Murphy, whose name is borne by Murphy’s Creek,
on the Toowoomba line. Murphy was also one of Leslie’s men, and he died at
Charters Towers on April 6, 1878.
Among the stone less graves is that of Tom Mostyn, one of the mob who
pulled Trevethan’s butchers shop down in the beef riots at Charters Towers, on
October 30, 1872.
Another man named Perkins was with Captain Owen Stanley on the
Rattlesnake, on the Queensland coast, in 1846, and was present at the Captain’s
funeral at North Shore, Sydney, on March 10, 1850.
There are many interesting men lying among the unknown dead. A young
fellow buried there was a son of Charles Alcocks, who was one of the owners of
the “Free Press,” a squatting paper, published in Brisbane in 1851, the office
being on the site of the present Australian Hotel. Young Alcocks was killed by
being thrown from his horse at Cowper’s Plains, in 1851. These plains are
erroneously called “Cooper’s Plains,” though named from Dr. Cowper, the first
medical man at the early convict settlement at Moreton Bay. Even Moreton Bay is
spelled wrongly, as it was named by Captain Cook after the Scottish Earl of
Morton, in whose name there is no “e.”
An old lady, still living, tells us that in the Paddington cemetery, she has a brother, who went up the Brisbane River on June 27, 1846, in the first trip of the small steamer, Experiment, owned and built by Pearse, when the first and second class passenger return fares were 6s and 4s, and the freight on wool was 2s per bale. She remembered when Francis Gill, for many years Postmaster at Ipswich, had a saddler’s shop at South Brisbane, in 1843. This latter tough old gentleman is still alive and well, and can be seen weekly in Queen Street, faultlessly dressed and wearing a bell topper hat.
She herself remembers when the first soda water and lemonade factory was
started in North Brisbane, by Fisher and
Gregory, in 1853, and Dr. Hobbs had his dugong oil fishery on the island of St.
Helena, fifteen years before Superintendent Macdonald started to cut the scrub
in 1864 to prepare it for a penal settlement.
A two year old son of John and Ann Nott was buried on May 17, 1875. Nott
was a merchant in Elizabeth Street, and had a wholesale house there. His wife
was widow of a painter named Murray. She was a daughter of Lachlan McLean, whose
son, William McLean, was once a well known blacksmith in Elizabeth Street. Nott
died at Enoggera Terrace. His widow is still alive, and resides near
Woolloongabba. She was referred to in a former article.
Elizabeth Bateman, who died on March 9, 1873, was the wife of Samuel
Bateman, who kept a hotel on the site of the present Hotel Cecil. It was built
by a man who was foreman printer on the “Courier,” in old Jimmy Swan’s days.
After Bateman died, the property was bought at a low figure by Dr. Mullen, who
built the Hotel Cecil of the present day.
The Horrocks family buried three of their children, Reginald Blackall,
Algernon Levinge, and Gertrude Mary Horrocks, in 1871 and 1873, aged 13 months,
10 months and 2 years and 9 months. Horrocks was the well known officer in
charge of the Orphans, and was once Immigration Agent. He held a Captain’s rank
in the army. He was a Manchester man, and a nephew of the Horrocks known to all women and drapers, as the
originator and maker of “Horrocks’ long cloths.” He married a Miss Miller, whose
father was a police magistrate at Armagh, in Ireland. That marriage was against
the wish of his uncle, and it cost Horrocks a fortune.
Horrocks was an educated, polite man, who commanded general respect. The
tragical fate of one of his sons is still familiar to Brisbane people. A daughter,
aged 18 or 19, died recently, but Mrs. Horrocks still resides in Brisbane. Reginald Miller,
of the Audit Office, is her brother.
Ernest Alexander Cairncross, a child of 21 days, who died on September 26, 1867, was a son of Cairncross, who kept a store on the corner of Queen and Albert Streets, where Rutter, the chemist, recently had a shop.
Cairncross was married to a daughter of old George Edmonstone, once
M.L.A., for Brisbane. He
had a butchering business in Queen Street. One of the daughters of Cairncross
married the present Hon. A. J. Thynne, who was staying at the time with the
Cairncross family on Spring Hill. This Cairncross is often confused with Captain
Cairncross, who owned Wattlebrae, and in front of whose house was the
“Cairncross Buoy,” well known to all boating men. That red buoy is still
A. R. and Annie Jones buried an infant on February 28, 1870. Jones was a
shipbuilder, predecessor of Paul and Gray.
One of his sons, named Sydney, became partner in the legal firm of Rees
R. and Sydney Jones, of Rockhampton. He married a daughter of the late John
Ferguson, and when he died his widow, who had several children, married J. T.
Bell, late Minister for Lands.
There is a stone placed over Charles Augustus Basham, by his brother, W.
H. Basham, who still resides at Oxley. Basham died on April 12, 1873, aged 37.
The father of these Bashams was an officer in the Irish Coast Guards. Our
informant was present, as a boy, at his funeral, at Cushendall, Red Bay, Glens
of Antrim, in 1849. The boy had run away from home to see the funeral, and saw a
hearse for the first time. This gruesome vehicle gave him an awful scare, but
nothing like the scare his dad gave him when he reached home.
Amelia Isabella Peake, who died on April 22, 1873, aged only 24, was the
wife of Captain Peake, first Captain of the old Government steamer, Kate, which
finally sank in Moreton Bay. Two of Mrs. Peake’s infants are buried with her. The ages, 24, 25, and 26, were
the fatal period for an appalling number of wives. When his wife died, Captain
Peake went to Sydney, and died somewhere in New South Wales.
One day in 1872, someone saw two large strange fish in the pond of the
Botanic Gardens. Captain Peake had a seine net and that was taken down to the
pond. The fish were caught and caused great astonishment, as no one at the time
had seen anything like them. But the usual expert came along and found that they
were two specimens of Ceratodus of
the Mary and Burnett Rivers. Enquiries proved that they had been caught years
before in Tinana Creek and been sent down to the gardens by the late R. B.
Sheridan, then Collector of Customs, in Maryborough. Then they were restored to
the pond and vanished again into oblivion until the days of curator McMahon,
when one of his men, a Teutonic gentleman, was cleaning out the pond, and caught
a ceratodus, then weighing about 12lbs. The German merely remarked, “By shingo,
dis vos goot,” and took it home and ate it. Next day he caught another, but
McMahon happened to come along, and sent it up to Curator de Vis at the Museum.
De Vis saw at once what the fish was, and sent it back to the Gardens, where it
was placed in the pond, none the worse for its temporary absence. Finally that
one and his mate were removed to the fountain pond at the south-west corner of
the Gardens, and both were taken away by the flood of 1893, or 21 years after
Captain Peake had hauled them out in his seine net.
John Wallace Barnett, who died on September 3, 1872, at the age of 46,
was a well known man in Brisbane, where he was
Consular Agent for the United States, a country in which he had lived for some
years. He and Heusmann, and G. R. Fyfe, were once owners of one of the principal
Mount Perry mines, and the town of “Fyfe Barnett,” actually stood on the present
site of Mount Perry. Barnett’s only son, Sydney Barnett, married a daughter of
William Baynes, once a partner in the squatting firm of Moore Brothers and
Baynes, owners of Barambah station, on the Burnett.
Baynes was returned as member for the Burnett, at the General Election of
1878, as a supporter of McIlwraith. He was a fine, genial, honest fellow, and a
general favourite on both sides of the House. The present writer was a member in
those days and can write with authority. Sydney Barnett lives today at Ormiston,
on the Cleveland railway.
One of Cobb and Co.’s coachman, a young fellow named Henry Taylor, was
drowned in Oxley Creek, on March 11, 1870, aged 29, and his fellow employees
erected a stone over his grave.
grew in beauty side by side
filled one home with glee,
graves are severed far and
mountain, stream, and sea.
same fond mother bent at night,
each fair sleeping brow,
had each folded flower in sight,
Among the unknown graves are those of a number of aboriginals, who were
These are said, by some early colonists, to have been buried outside the
cemetery, and others say
they were buried in a corner inside.
It is certain they were all taken charge of by the Church of England.
On April 21, 1854, a
notorious black called “Dundahli,” was hanged on the site of the present General
Post Office. He had been accused of seven murders, but the one he was hanged for
was that of William Gregor and Mary Shannon, at the Pine River. On the day he
was hanged – by a hangman purposely brought from Sydney – there was a mob of
about 33 blacks on the “Windmill Hill,” where the Observatory is today. They
called to Dundahli, as he stood on the gallows, and he called back, telling them
to be sure and kill “Woom-boongoroo,” the black who had betrayed him. He was
captured in the Valley, where he had incautiously ventured among a lot of other
blacks, through the agency of a man named Baker, who in after years had a farm
and hotel at Walloon, in the Rosewood.
Baker knew Dundahli, and
enticed him into a room where three other men were concealed, and the four men
sprang on him, and held him until the police came. Dundahli was badly knocked
about in the struggle.
Mrs. Baker told the writer in 1878, that there was a reward of £25 for his capture, and she went to the courthouse and drew the money for her husband. She is said to be still alive, in Ipswich, or was a few years ago.
Dundahli had too long a drop, and fell with his feet on the coffin underneath. The hangman doubled his legs us, and added his own weight, until the miserable black was strangled.
It was a ghastly spectacle for a crowd of men, women, and children.
Dundahli was buried at Paddington, either inside or outside the Church of
Two other blacks who were hanged are also there. These were “Chanerrie,”
and “Dick,” hanged on August 4, 1859, for a criminal assault on a German woman.
They were two Burnett River blacks.
The came “Kipper Billy,” who was shot by Warder Armstrong when attempting
to escape from the jail. It was remarkable that no bullet wound was discovered,
but it must have reached his interior somehow, unless he died on shock, or what
the modern Sawbones calls “stoppage of the heart’s action.” Presumably, if the
heart continued working, death would be indefinitely postponed.
Some enterprising criminologist opened “Kipper Billy’s” grave, and took
his skull away. This raised much indignation on the part of Shepherd Smith and
Henry Buckley, the cemetery trustees. Someone,
in 1854, had dug down to Dundahli and taken his head. The Paddington cemetery was a lonely
isolated spot in those days, and there was opportunity enough to dig up
Buried there is a man named Jubb, who had a hotel in Cunningham’s Gap, on
the old road to Toowoomba, in 1852. In that year, two distinguished visitors
went up to see the squatters on the Downs. These were Lord Kerr, and Lord Scott,
the latter being a son of the Duke of Buccleugh. They stayed, on their way up
and down, at Jubb’s Hotel. These were the first lords who ever visited the
territory now called Queensland. Jubb’s name recalls the “Jubb Jubb” in the
“Hunting of the Snark.”
A neat headstone marks the grave of Thomas Ayerst Hooker, second son of
James and Mary Hooker, drowned in the Condamine crossing at Undulla, on December
13, 1866. A squatter named James Hooker, or Hook, was one of the owners of
Weranga Station, in 1856, afterwards sold by Hook, or Hooker, to Mort and
Laidley. Was this young fellow Hooker his son? Perhaps some old squatter will
kindly tell us. And was the body brought all that distance in those days, to be
buried at Paddington?
Buried on December 23, 1871, was a child of seven months old, named
Moreton Franklyn Ryder, son of the long experienced and courteous Under
Secretary W. H. Ryder, of the Home Office. Ryder was born in Prince Edward
Island, Canada, in November, 1843, and came to Victoria in 1851.
In 1861, he was on the staff of the old “Guardian” newspaper in Brisbane, and in 1862 became
a clerk in the Government Printing Office. Thence he rose rapidly and finally
reached the post of Under Secretary, in 1896. He had once a sadder bereavement
than that of the baby of 1871, when a fine son was killed on Breakfast Creek
bridge by being thrown off his pony on the way to school. One of his sisters was
married to Rickards, once station master at Ipswich, and became mother of Katie
Rickards, the brilliant pianisto.
Harold Durham Paul, who died on June 12, 1873, was a four months and
fourteen days old baby, fourth son of George William and Emily Paul. This George
William is our well known genial Judge Paul, who was born at Penrith, New South
Wales, on June 2, 1839, and came to Queensland on December 25, 1863. He became
Crown Prosecutor in 1866, Acting Judge in 1871, and District Court Judge in
1874. He has been three or four times Acting Judge of the Supreme Court.
A young fellow named William Page had an accident on board the ship Light
Brigade, on her way to Brisbane, and was so badly
injured that he died after arrival, on December 15, 1866, aged 22.
A young fellow named John Mace, said to be a brother or nephew of the
famous boxer, Jem Mace, was drowned in the Brisbane River, on September
11, 1869, aged 23.
One grave holds the infant son of George Hope and Morforwyn Verney.
Captain Verney was aide-de-camp to Governor Blackall, and left Queensland when
the Marquis died.
Evidently Mrs. Verney, if we are to judge by her name, belonged to a
The child died on November 26, 1870.
It would appear as if one early settler was somewhat of a humorist, with
regard to names. That was Henry Rosetta, who died on December 9, 1863, aged 49.
Beside him lies a six year old son, whom he had named “Christmas Gift,” and who
died June 23, 1864. This is the Rosetta who gave his name to “Rosetta Swamp” of
the present day, the notorious quagmire out of which Dr. Ham has ordered the
City Council to expel all microbes without delay.
One stone less grave contains a man named Marks, who was one of a number
badly injured in a terrible boiler explosion at the Union foundry, in
Maryborough, in 1872, when seven men were killed. One half of the boiler was
blown clear over a Chinaman’s garden, 200 yards away.
In 1855, two shiploads of German immigrants arrived in Brisbane, by the ships Merbz
and Aurora. They were engaged in Germany by a man named Kirchner, of Kirchner
and Co., of Sydney, who brought them out on a two years engagement.
They were intended for the stations, as men were scarce in those days,
especially shepherds, of whom a great number were killed by the blacks. The
squatters were to pay £16 for each German’s passage, to be deducted from his two
years’ wages. A majority of the squatters made no deductions, and the Germans
gave great satisfaction. A number shared the fate of those who fell under the
spear and nulla. Among these immigrants were two brothers named Muller, one of
whom died a month after arrival, and was buried in the Paddington cemetery. The brother went
as a hutkeeper on Manumbar station, and was killed by the blacks.
Captain Graham Mylne, M.L.A., and his wife, Helena White, buried a five
months old child on May 31, 1868. Mylne in that year, was member for the
Warrego. The Mackenzie Ministry was in office, and in a precarious position. Not
a soul of either the Council or Assembly is alive today. South Brisbane was represented by
T. B. Stephens, North Brisbane by A. B. Pritchard
and Dr. O’Doherty, the Valley by Charles Lilley. The 20 members of the Council,
and the 31 of the Assembly are all dead. Mylne spoke of the position of the
Ministry, who had been defeated on the Address-in-Reply, by 13 to 11, and the
Governor refused to accept their resignation. Mylne’s wife, the mother of the
child at Paddington, was a Miss White, sister of Albert White, of the Logan
River, now of Bluff Downs, west of Toowoomba. Besides his station on the Logan,
Albert White held old Combabah Station, which took all the country from the
Coomera River to Nerang, including Southport.
In 1870, the Manager of Combabah was old Sandy Gordon, who kept a whole
pack of Kangaroo dogs, the leaders of which were usually about a mile ahead of
Gordon on the march. Present writer was a youth of 17, when on a first visit to
Queensland, in 1870, and we had two days kangaroo hunting with Gordon. Southport
then was covered by heavy forest, with rank undergrowth, and long grass, full of
Albert White, the present owner of Bluff Downs, on the head of the
Burdekin, was in Brisbane
last week. He is one of the finest specimens of men in Queensland. He was a
young man when owner of Nindooimbah and Coombabah. His sister, who married
Graham Mylne, is still alive and well, in Sydney, but Mylne died many years ago,
at Eatonswell Station, on the Clarence.
One of his sons, also a Captain Mylne, fought in the South African war,
and was on the staff of Lord Metheun. He passed through Brisbane last week, and we
shall have occasion to refer to him and Albert White again.
David Williams, who died on March 26, 1874, was a Welshman, who had been
years in the pilot service, at Gladstone, and was also some time in the Port
Can anyone enlighten us concerning Clara Ann Hopkins, who died on April
12, 1874, aged 29, and on whose grave is this extraordinary verse?
“She is not as we saw her
On a suffering dying
To her all death and pain
And by living streams she is
She has learned the sacred
Of the Saviour’s dying
Her eyes now see the
That awaited her
If the writer of this had seen the look in the eyes of those who read it,
he would have fled somewhere in the middle of the night.
In the centre of Rosewood, near Marburg, is a flat valley, once known as
Sally Owen’s Plains, still known as such to old residents. Sally was an old time
celebrity, who kept a hotel at Western Creek, between Rosewood and Grandchester,
then known as “Bigge’s Camp.” She used the plains for her cattle and horses, as
they were safe there from horse thieves and cattle duffers. The “plains” were
merely an open forest pocket in the brigalow scrub. An enterprising person , who
had run an illicit still in the old country, thought Sally Owen’s plains an
ideal spot for a similar institution, and he made whisky and rum there in
hundreds of gallons. Likewise he killed cattle and boiled then down for tallow.
He took this tallow to Ipswich in large casks, but there was only about six
inches of tallow in the inside of the casks, and all the rest was occupied by
kegs of raw spirit! This was engineered so cleverly that there was never any
discovery. That old time distiller of Sally Owen’s Plains, lies at rest in
Paddington cemetery, near
the southwest corner.
We withhold his name for the sake of his descendants. The shepherds,
shearers, stockmen, and bullock drivers of those days must have had a gay time
with the rum from Sally Owen’s Plains. Artemus Ward would have said “that sort
of rum inspires a man with a wild desire to smash windows!”
In reference to correspondents who wrote to make corrections.
Notwithstanding the fair Josephine Papi’s declaration that her uncle
Jerry Scanlan was a surveyor, we have the inexorable facts that he was a saddler
by trade, and a policeman by choice. Those who knew Jerry most intimately, say
he would not have known the difference between a theodolite and a concertina.
Jerry had a weakness for attending funerals, mounted on a serious looking horse,
with two long “weepers” hanging from the back of his hat.
In reply to Mr. Rendall, who says his father’s name was John Wood
Rendall, we can only say that John Randall is the name on the tombstone.
“The man, how wise, who sick
of gaudy scenes,
Is led by choice to take his
Beneath Death’s gloomy,
silent cypress shades,
Unpierced by Vanity’s
To read his monuments, to
weigh his dust,
How loved, how valued once,
avail thee not;
To whom related, or by whom
A heap of dust alone remains
‘Tis all Thou art and all
the Proud shall be.
The doctor says that I shall
You that I knew in days gone
I fain would see your face
Con well its features o’er
And touch your hand, and
feel your kiss,
Look in your eyes and tell
That all is done, that I am
That you through all
Have neither part nor lot in
A neat headstone is over Susan Geary, wife of Lieutenant William Geary,
R.N. She died on August 9, 1852. She was the mother of all the Queensland
Gearys, including four girls and three boys, of whom only one girl is alive
One of the sons was once manager of Jimbour station when Joshua Bell was
owner, in the days when champagne was a common beverage, and the silver on the
Jimbour dining table cost £500. Those days have passed.
It is interesting to remember that Joshua Peter Bell was an enthusiastic
admirer of the Miss Geary who married Robert Little, the Crown Solicitor. Both
were competitors for her hand, and Little won. It was a grievous disappointment
to Bell, but the squatters of those days, like the French Mirabeau family, had a
talent for choosing fine women, and Bell went and wooed and won a daughter of
Dr. Dorsey, of Ipswich. She and the Miss Geary who married Little, were two of
the finest specimens of women in Queensland. One Miss Geary married Percy
Faithfull, member of an old time honored family, in New South Wales. On one
occasion in their single days, the sons of Faithfull were driving home across
the Goulburn Plains, when they were attacked by Gilbert, the bushranger, and his
gang, who had bailed up Springfield station, and rounded up the whole
population. The Faithfull boys made a gallant fight, and were quite a surprise
party to Gilbert. The Gilbert men were armed only with revolvers, and knowing
that one of the Faithfulls had a rifle, in addition to their revolvers, galloped
round at long range, fired under the necks of their horses, and from behind
trees, and generally gave the Faithfull warriors a wide berth. One of Gilbert’s
men got fairly close and fired from behind a tree, point blank at one of the
Faithfull brothers, but Faithfull’s horse threw up its head at the exact moment,
intercepted the ball with its forehead, and fell dead. Finally the bushrangers
cleared, and the gallant fight of the Faithfulls was afterwards recognised by
the Government in a gold medal for each of the party.
One Miss Geary married E. O. Moriarty, engineer in chief of Harbors and
Rivers in New South Wales. Another married a nephew of Sir Maurice O’Connell.
The Miss Geary who married Robert Little had a family of four sons and four
William Henry Geary, the grandfather, died on February 20, 1870. He was at one time Harbor Master in Brisbane. One of his sons, Godfrey N. B. Geary, was once chief clerk in the Lands office, and a captain in the artillery. He involved himself in a a lawsuit for breach of promise brought against him by a Miss Hollingsworth, of Stanthorpe, and she got a verdict for a thousand pounds. But she merely held it over him in terrorem, like a Damocles sword, which was to fall only if he married another girl. As he contracted no further engagements, the sword remained suspended until he died. Miss Hollingsworth finally married Tom Coventry, a gentleman whose name is not unknown in mining circles. Mrs. Coventry, an educated, intellectual, woman, was for years, the social editor-ess of the “Telegraph,” and once started on her own account a bright little journal called the “Princess,” which reached 22 numbers, and died generally regretted by all who knew it.
On the headstone of the Mrs. Geary from 1852 we read:
“And I heard a voice which said: ‘
Write – blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth.”
Margaret Francis Clara, wife of William Pickering, died on June 28, 1859,
aged 43, and Pickering died on March 11, 1868, aged 57. Pickering was once
Curator of Intestate Estates, also an auctioneer and commission agent, and owned
a lot of land in the Valley, where the Pickering Estate took in a considerable
area now covered by closely built houses. Alexander Raff succeeded him as
Curator of Intestate Estates. One of his sons, now deceased, was a once fairly
well known Captain Pickering, for some years labor agent in the South Seas. His
family are still in Brisbane.
Elizabeth Cowell, who died on January 17, 1864, aged 38, was the first
wife of Tom Cowell, once one of Brisbane’s best known men.
Tom once had a dairy farm at the “One-mile Swamp,” the present Woolloongabba,
and carried milk into town in two cans slung on a yoke across his shoulders. The farm
was owned by old “Joe Howe,” who is still alive. Joe had one daughter who
married Bill Moody, of Oxley.
Cowell prospered , as he deserved to prosper , and in after years became
the proprietor of the Sovereign Hotel in Queen Street. Finally he retired, and
lived in a house on the North Quay, near the Longreach. The house was afterwards
occupied by Dr. Purcell, and at the present time is tenanted by the Military
Club. In that house, Tom Cowell’s first wife, a fine specimen of a woman, died a
tragical death through her clothes catching fire, and the servant girl who tried
to save her was also burnt to death.
In after years, Tom married again, and the second wife is still alive. By
the first he had one daughter, who married a man named Daniell, who died not
long ago. Present writer knew Cowell well. Once sold to him for £40 a double
choke bore Greener gun which cost £65. Cowell afterwards sold it to Lennon, of
Lennon’s hotel, for £40, and Lennon used it for many pigeon matches. When he
died the gun disappeared, and finally found its way to a Brisbane pawn shop, where
warehouseman John Bell saw and bought it for £5, and it is now in his
On Mrs. Cowell’s grave is the line
“Ye know not what shall be on the morrow.”
One headstone, which has fallen down, bears the name of two children,
Emma and William Henry Collins, who died in 1863 and 1864. Beside them is the
grandmother, Mary Collins, who died on July 12, 1873, aged 86, one of the very
few old people in the cemetery. The father of the
children, Jimmy Collins, was a well known butcher and tanner, who once owned the
present York Hotel, which he built up from a butcher’s shop, the money being
mostly provided by Joshua Peter Bell, who realised the words of the Psalmist,
“passing away, passing away,” for he never saw his cash anymore.
Ann Ellen Boyce, second daughter of William Martin Boyce, E.L.C.S., died
on June 11, 1866, aged 24. Also Susan, wife of W. M. Boyce, died on May 27,
1874, aged 58. The stone also records Ellen Victoria Board, youngest daughter of
W. M. and Susan Boyce, who died at Melbourne on August 24, 1877, aged 34. She
was the wife of T. A. Board, of Sydney, brother of G. L. Board, present chief
clerk in the Lands Office and Inspector of State Forests. The stone also records
Stuart Leslie Board, a child of the mother, who died in Melbourne.
William Martin Boyce was for many years Town Clerk of Toowoomba, and his
only son, J. A. Boyce, is the well known P.M. of Townsville. The first wife of
W. M. Boyce was a Miss Brown of Tasmania. When G. L. Board was a youth he went
to a collegiate school kept by the Rev E. B. Shaw, close to the old windmill,
the present Observatory. Among his fellow pupils were the McDougalls and
Taylors, of Toowoomba, Pring Roberts, Arthur Chambers, Fred Hamilton, Jack Kent,
the two Hausmanns, and other sons of the pioneers.
A four months’ child named Frederick Charles Cracknell was a son of
Cracknell, who was the predecessor of Matvieff as head of the Telegraph
Department. He lived four miles out on the Ipswich Road, near Hardcastle’s old
Gilbert Wright, of New South Wales, was a solicitor, who died in Brisbane on June 12, 1866, aged 37. He resided in the Valley. His widow married the well-known R. R. Smellie, founder of the firm of R. R. Smellie and Co. On Wright’s tomb are the words,
“I wait for the Lord;
my soul doth wait,
and in His word do I
Charlotte Greenwood was the wife of Christopher Henry Greenwood, and died
on March 16, 1857, aged 23. Greenwood kept a hotel in Grey Street, near Russell
Street, South Brisbane.
One Miss Greenwood married George Grenier, of Oxley. The Grenier family held a
lot of land in South Brisbane.
Joseph Thompson, who died on December 19, 1857, aged 38, had his name
handed down by the Thompson Estate on the Ipswich Road, near the junction.
On March 11, 1856, a young fellow named J. M. Omanney, aged 20, was
thrown from his horse and killed on the Breakfast Creek road. He was a son of
Major Omanney, of the Bengal Engineers.
One of the earliest graves is that of Edward Roe Thomas, fourth son of Jocelyn Thomas, Esq., of Van Diemen’s Land, who died on July 31, 1853, aged 32. The stone assures us that
“he died in the Christian faith, a firm believer in his Saviour.”
His father was careful to
have the “Esquire” on the tombstone. Some day we shall see a stone to the memory
of John Brown, J.P.
A neat stone marks the grave of Frederick Neville Isaac, of Gowrie,
Darling Downs, who died on July 12, 1865, aged 44. This name takes us back to
the early squatting days, to the year 1845, when Hughes and Isaac held Westbrook
and Stanbrook stations, when Tom Bell, grandfather of the present Bells, held
Jimbour, and ex P.M. Papa Pinnock held Ellangowan. Leichhardt named the Isaacs
River, a tributary of the Fitzroy, after F. Isaac, of Gowrie station. It is
rather remarkable that the name on the tombstone is Isaac, whereas Leichhardt
and the early records give it as Isaacs. The Isaac in the Paddington cemetery was only 23 when he
met Leichhardt at Gowrie in 1844.
Alice Elizabeth Burrowes, who died in March 1859, was the sixteen year
old daughter of Major Edward Burrowes, one time Deputy Surveyor-General when A.
C. Gregory was Surveyor-General. Burrowes held a Lieutenant’s commission in the
93rd Regiment at 17 years of age. He married a Francis Susannah
Nalder, who died at the age of 68, at Burketown, when on a visit to her son, and
was buried under the only shade tree within a radius of 30 miles. Eight of her
family are still living, five sons and three daughters. One of the girls,
Frances Mary, is a widow, living in Yorkshire. Amy is a Mrs. Allan Campbell, of
Bathurst, and the third, Augusta, is the wife of the well known Brisbane chemist Harry
Cormack. The first treadle sewing machine that ever came to Queensland was
imported by A. C. Gregory, and presented to Mrs. Burrowes. It was a great
curiosity in those days. Mrs. Cormack’s name, Augusta, was given in honor of
Gregory, whose name was Augustus.
“Farewell, my son!
And farewell all my earthly happiness!
Farewell, my only son!
Would to God I had died for thee!
I shall never more see earthly good in the land of the living!
Attempt not to comfort me!
I shall go mourning all the rest of my days,
until my grey hairs come down with sorrow to the grave!”
I pass, with melancholy
By all these solemn heaps of
And think, as soft and sad I
Above the venerable
Time was, like me, they life
And time will be when I
In the Baptist section of the Paddington cemetery is William Grimes, who died on October 30, 1870, aged 60. The stone tells us that he “was the father of Messrs. Grimes of this city.” It also records the death of Ernest Henry Grimes, a grandson, who died on May 12, 1875, aged 6. The Grimes family are prominent in Brisbane history over a considerable period. Samuel and George Grimes were members of the Assembly as representatives of Oxley and Bulimba.
In 1874, S. and G. Grimes, grocers of Queen Street, had a sugar and
arrowroot mill at Oxley, adjoining the Pearlwell Estate, owned by Dr. Waugh, one
of whose daughters was drowned in the Quetta.
Sam and George Grimes were men of undoubted honesty, but not orators or
statesmen. On one occasion when Sam rose to speak, Morehead got up and walked
out, remarking: “I can’t stand the hum of that arrowroot mill!”
This sarcastic observation referred to the arrowroot making at the
Coongoon mills. Grimes and Petty, and S. and G. Grimes were once familiar
One Miss Grimes married J. B. Hall, Accountant in Insolvency.
One daughter and one son, Ernest Henry Grimes, remained unmarried.
Jane Bulgin, who died in 1872, was the wife of auctioneer Bulgin, of Brisbane’s early days, and
mother of Henry Bulgin, generally known as “Lord Bulgin,” who died recently,
leaving a family, of whom one was for a time nurse in the General Hospital. One
of “Lord Bulgin’s” sisters was a girl whose beauty captivated Sam Griffith,
Chief Justice of the Commonwealth, and Sam did his best to induce her to become
Mrs. Griffith, but Sam was not her ideal, or she had no idea that he would one
day have a salary of £3,500, and so she rejected him and married C. C.
Carrington, one of the still living men who have been longest in the Civil
Service in Queensland.
Clara Reinhard, who died on
November 27, 1867, was a year old child whose sister was one of the cleverest
pupils in the early days of All Hallows Convent School. Can anyone tell us what
became of Lillian Reinhard?
William Hickey, who died on August 7, 1871, is under a stone erected by
his brother, Matthew Hickey, who was 30 years with D. L. Brown and Co., and is
now with Alexander Stewart and Sons. Hickey’s brothers were well known
perambulating salesmen in the days when Mallens and Ziemans and other old time
peripatetic merchants were out in search of spare cash from the pioneer
The oldest recorded grave in the cemetery is that of
“Margaret Brown, of Ipswich,” native of Kildare, Ireland, who died on August 30,
1845, aged 35. Being Irish, she was evidently no relation of the Ipswich Brown
family, which included Peter Brown, once mayor of Ipswich, and a leading
architect, as they were all decidedly Scottish, and wore kilts and called
themselves “Broon.” So far we have failed to trace the Maggie Brown who was
taken out to the Paddington cemetery over sixty five and
a half years ago, or three years after Brisbane was thrown open to
free settlement, in 1842.
Conspicuous among the graves of the white race is the solitary last
resting place of “Sing Cong Long,” in the Presbyterian ground. How came this one
lonely disciple of Confucius and Mencius, and Bhudda, among the adherents of the
stern merciless uncompromising John Knox, who bearded the Scottish, Queen Mary,
in her den? Sing Cong Long was a Chinese merchant and fruiterer, who had shops
in Albert Street, and was a general favourite with all classes. And yet Sing
Cong Long had unscrupulous enemies – with whom he wanted to get even – and he
studied the various religions to ascertain which one gave most promise of a
conclusive settlement. He decided in favor of Presbyterianism after reading a
translation of a sermon by Calvin, who held that the chief joy of the Blessed
was in sitting on the battlements of Heaven and joyfully contemplating the
gymnastic performances of lost souls basting in the sulphur ocean of fire
underneath! Hence the appearance of Sing Cong Long in the Presbyterian cemetery!
Caroline Jane Blakeney, buried on March 23, 1866, was a little girl, six
years and 20 days of age, daughter of William and Eliza Blakeney. Blakeney was
the once well known Registrar-General, and son of Judge Blakeney. One of his
daughter s married T. H. B. Barron, and another married S. B. Leishman, the
squatter. Both were fine looking women. One of Mrs. Barron’s daughters is the
wife of one of Sir Arthur Palmer’s sons. C. J. Blakeney, a once well known
lawyer of Brisbane,
Cairns, and Cooktown, was another son of the Judge.
Thomas William Hutton, a young man who died in May 1874, was the son of
an old gaol warder, whose name is borne by Hutton Lane, between Adelaide and Ann
Street. One of his daughters married a son of Stuart Russell, author of the
“Genesis of Queensland.”
Maria Passmore, who died on April 11, 1872, aged 27, was the wife of Hugh
Passmore, one of a family well known in the early days of Toowoomba, where they
were prominent citizens.
Edmund Morris Lockyer, who died on June 28, 1872, aged 62, was a son of
Major Lockyer, who came up the Brisbane River in a
whaleboat in 1825, and wrote a full description of all he saw. Among the men
with him were two red-haired soldiers, at whose fiery ringlets the blacks were
much astonished. Lockyer and his party camped one night at the mouth of Oxley
Creek, and in his diary he says, “Emus were running about all night, making an
intolerable noise.” As emus do not move at night, and make very little noise at
any time, Lockyer evidently referred to the stone plover, usually known as the
curlew. Lockyer’s name is handed down to us by Lockyer’s Creek at Gatton, one of
the tributaries of the Brisbane River.
Peter and Magdalena Betz buried a year old child on February 20, 1870, Betz kept the West Riding Hotel, at the foot of Queen Street.
The only child of William and Ellen Scarr, was buried on October 23, 1874. Scarr was a draughtsman in the Survey Office, and still resides in Brisbane. Very melancholy are these children’s graves. Old Matthew Prior, the poet, wrote,
“Happy the babe, who,
privelege by fate,
To shorter labour and lighter
Received but yesterday the
gift of breath,
Ordered tomorrow to return to death.”
Edward Hackway, who died on August 18, 1871, aged 41, left a widow, a
handsome woman, who married John Killeen Handy, member for the Mitchell in
Bramston petitioned against his return, but the Committee decided that he
was legally entitled to hold the seat. The petition was based on the ground that
Handy was a priest of the Roman Catholic faith, and as such could not be a
member of Parliament.
The chief evidence was that of Dr. Cain, who said that with the Church of
Rome, a priest is always a priest, and that he cannot give up, nor can the
church take from him, the priestly character conferred by ordination. He might
dress like a layman, but he is always a priest. Even if under major
excommunication, he still remains a priest, though cut off from positive and
active communion with the faithful. Under minor ex-communication he can still
say Mass, and even under major excommunication he can administer baptism in
emergencies. Handy said he joined the Church of England in 1863, and next month
was married by a Church of England clergyman. In 1865 he started practice as a
barrister in Brisbane,
where he had arrived in the previous year. Evidently Mrs. Hackway was Handy’s
second wife. Handy’s vote on one occasion saved the Palmer Ministry from defeat,
a friendly act not forgotten by Palmer.
An old time publican named Woods kept a hotel in Queen Street, on the
site of Todd’s auction mart. He was the man who introduced the first cab to Brisbane, one of the old
“jingles” which have long since disappeared, though in a majority over the
hansoms for many years. The two seats were back to back, the same as in an Irish
jaunting car, but faced to and from the driver, whereas in the Irish car the
seats were back to back facing over the wheels.
The first “jingle” was received with great applause and much mirth, and
as at that time the streets bore no resemblance to a billiard table, it was
necessary to hold on securely to avoid being fired out into space. No
citizen of that date was recognised
in “society” unless he had been on Woods’ jingle. The driver on one occasion,
after taking too much rum on board, drove his astonished steed into the
waterhole at the corner of Albert and Adelaide Streets, and went to sleep on the
front seat. Sarcastic bushmen woke him up, and asked if he was fishing. One of
them waded in and led the horse out.
A young man of 22 named Martin Collins died on May 2, 1871. His father
was a butcher in Queen Street, and one of the family is still in the same trade
A child’s grave bears the name of Irwin Maling, who was a military
captain connected with a detachment of the 50th Regiment, which bore
the name of the “Dirty Half-hundred,” a name said to have been acquired by their
severe economies in personal expenditure, especially where ladies were
Mary Jewell, who died in December 1874, aged 41, was the wife of Jewell, whose name is born by Jewell’s Buildings, near the Grand Hotel.
missing) Fahey was adopted by the New England blacks, who took him to the
triennial festival at the Bunya Mountains. Fahey evidently was quite at home
with the blacks, and he remained with the bunya tribes, who ornamented him with
raised “Moolgarre” scars on the breast and shoulders, and gave him the native
name of “Gilburrie.” He had been 12 years with the blacks, whose language he
spoke fluently, when found and brought in by Lieutenant Bligh and the native
police in 1854. He was taken to Sydney, identified by the Superintendent of
Convicts, and actually sentenced to 12 months hard labor for absconding 12 years
before. Fahey escaped and joined the blacks in 1842, the year in which Davis and
Bracefell were brought in by Andrew Petrie. Fahey had a brother, a free man, who
came out in 1852, and was in Sydney when his brother was brought in. After
“Gilburrie” Fahey had served his time, the two brothers came to Brisbane, and went to work
on Jimbour station under the name of Bryant, but “Bilburrie” was at once
recognised by the blacks. Burke, the manager of Jimbour had been killed by the
blacks in 1852, not far from the station.
The Bells told Fahey that they cared nothing about his previous career; but he only stayed there over one shearing season, and went away to New South Wales where he died.
“Death is here, and death is
Death is busy
All around, within,
Above, is Death, and we are
Death has set his mark and
On all we are and all we
On all we know and all we
All things that we love and
Lost, lost, for ever
In the wide pathless desert
of dim Sleep,
That beautiful shape! Does
the dart gate of Death
Conduct to thy mysterious
Can equal violations of the
The dead how sacred! Sacred
is the dust
Of this Heaven labored form,
This Heaven assumed majestic
robe of earth.
Among the dead is one name well known in the Queensland State and Federal service today. On November 12, 1871, Richard Bliss, aged 44, was buried in the Paddington cemetery, and beside him lies his two little girls, Mary Sophia Bertha, and Maud Ethel, who had died in 1865 and 1869, aged six years and one year. Richard Bliss and family came to Queensland in 1864, in the Flying Cloud, commanded by Captain Jones, who was in after years drowned in the China Seas.
The Bliss family, on arrival in Brisbane, went to stay with
the Rev. John Bliss, at St. John’s parsonage, in William Street. John and
Richard Bliss were brothers, but the clerical Bliss had been out some years
before the other, and had ceased to be a new chum when his brother arrived.
Richard Bliss became an officer in the Audit Office, and also the father of six
sons, of whom one is today in the Treasury, one in the Lands Office, and two in
the Customs, in Brisbane
and Townsville. One son, the eldest brother, was a captain in the militia, and
was present with Colonel Prendergast at the storming of King Theebaw’s palace.
One of the daughters of Richard Bliss married the well known and deservedly
respected Dr. Ryan, of Gympie.
Mary Ann Hamilton, who died as a girl, at the age of 13 years, was a
daughter of the once well known J. A. Hamilton, who was in charge of Dunwich for
over twenty years. One of her brothers is a responsible officer in the Port
Office today. Hamilton, who died some years ago, married a second time, and the
second wife is still alive, and at present on a visit to a daughter in North
Queensland. By each wife he had a family of six children. There was no better
known man in Moreton Bay, and Dunwich has never had a more considerate or
Among those in the Presbyterian cemetery is Margaret
Stewart, who died on August 31, 1858. She was the wife of Hugh Stuart, who died
on June 28, 1871, aged 73. Hugh was a popular blacksmith, whose smiddy was at
the back of Menzies boardinghouse, opposite Jerry Scanlan’s hotel in Edward
Street. Jerry’s hotel was then kept by a man named Fishley, the predecessor of
Jerry. Stewart was an enthusiastic Highlander, and a great patron of the
Caledonian sports. Likewise he was a general favourite, and a real good old
James Paish, who died at the age of 26, on November 16, 1866, was a
member of the “Queen’s Own” the 50th regiment, then stationed at Brisbane, in the Petrie
Terrace barracks. This regiment left an unpleasant record. They were in frequent
conflict with the police, and a source of many troubles. The men had an unsavory
reputation. They were charged with various robberies, and never paid any bills
except compelled. Frequently the police sent at night for the officers to come
and take charge of their men, who had been arrested. Three of them assaulted
Constable Colahan in Albert Street, which even then had an evil reputation, and
had him apparently killed when the police arrived and handled the soldiers
roughly, in fact the three of them were knocked out by a present day retired
Inspector of Police, renowned for his size as a son of Anak.
In South Brisbane,
the redoubtable citizen, Paddy Fox, is the only surviving link that binds us to
that Queen’s Own squad of 1868. When the regiment departed, Paddy was left
behind. He was either too virtuous and abstemious to continue longer with such a
reckless crew, or he was asleep at the hour of despatch.
Henry Watson, who died on December 17, 1861, at the age of 38, was a
young man of independent means, whose old country parents were comfortably
situated. Watson married a daughter from the Grenier family of South Brisbane. He was the first
man who traded in oysters from Moreton Bay to Brisbane. This was a hobby
with Watson more than a source of revenue. He bought a cutter and engaged a man
to bring oysters to Brisbane and sell them. The
oysters in those days were sold at 10s per bag, or a shilling for a bucketful,
and were a much better quality than we get today. Watson’s career was
unfortunately cut off at the early age of 38, and the oyster trade languished
for two years afterwards.
Two children of Robert D. Henry died at Goodna in 1873 and 1875. Henry
was then a warder at Woogaroo, but he was a man who held a sailing master’s
certificate, and in after years we find him as captain of the schooner Tom
Fisher, which was built on the Clarence, and named after Tom Fisher, the leading
storekeeper of Grafton in those days. The schooner traded for many years between
Brisbane and Thursday
Island, and is still “going strong.” Captain Henry is at present residing in
Ernest Street, South Brisbane. His wife is a
sister of David Graham, retired Inspector of Police, well known in Brisbane, Charleville,
Rockhampton, Townsville, and Burketown. He is now a resident of Edmonstone
Street, South Brisbane.
The first vessel Captain Henry had in Queensland, was the Governor
Cairns, which was built in England purposely to be used by the Queensland
Government as a pilot schooner. Her construction was supervised by Captain
Daniel Boult, and she was brought over by Captain Cairncross, nephew of the
Captain Cairncross who resided at Wattlebrae, near Bulimba. Captain Henry had
charge of the Governor Cairns, for some years in Moreton Bay, where she was the
pilot schooner. In the first days of the annexation of New Guinea, she was
chartered as a yacht for the use of the Government. Then she had a term of
service at Cooktown and Thursday Island. About two years ago, Captain Henry
bought her a s a speculation, and sold her in Sydney at a profit. This vessel
had a varied and successful career at least so far as escaping accidents or
wreck was concerned.
Mary Baird was the wife of the Rev. John Wilson, a Presbyterian parson,
who lived near the Christian Brothers, on Gregory Terrace. She died on January
17, 1866, aged only 29. Wilson preached in the old Wharf Street church, and is
remembered as a good preacher, and all round real fine fellow. He is the subject
of a very comical reminiscence. Two immigrant ships had arrived, and on board
were many girls, some of whom were of a somewhat frivolous disposition, girls
for whom Mrs. Grundy had no terrors. When one loose onshore these festive ladies
atoned for the restraint of the sea voyage. Their conduct was giddy in the
extreme. Three of the choicest and their gentlemen friends took possession of
Wilson’s hay loft under the impression that it was some peculiar sort of
Australian bedroom. Wilson heard the voices and advanced towards the loft in the
form of a hollow square, or some other military figure, and overheard remarks
which turned half his hair grey. He turned and fled to the police station,
muttering a prayer as he ran. At the station he found the giant O’Driscoll, the
genial Inspector Andrew of today, and told him a dreadful tale. O’Driscoll asked
him if he would like them all hanged or merely admonished and discharged. Wilson
wanted them all arrested before they set fire to his hay loft. O’Driscoll’s
office was then in Adelaide Street, next to the old Wesleyan church. He took two
policemen with him, and Wilson, in a cab, and the four started for the scene of
operations. The night was dark and heavy rain was falling. O’Driscoll got a
ladder, and climbed up to the loft, followed by Wilson. Both stepped inside, and
O’Driscoll lighted a candle. The scene that presented itself turned the balance
of Wilson’s hair grey. Lying on the hay were three very scantily dressed ladies,
and three gentlemen wearing nothing, all sound asleep. One of the three
“gentlemen” was an American black, whose dark skin contrasted conspicuously with
the snow white limbs of his “lady,” who was said to be a splendid specimen of a
woman. The scene in which she figured was one that could only be described in a
language that no reader of “Truth” could understand. And all this in a
clergyman’s hay loft! It was blasphemy, sacrilege, atheism, and – most
The stern O’Driscoll was so shocked that he held on to a rafter to keep himself from falling out of the loft. Wilson clasped his hands and muttered, “Merciful God, what sons and daughters of Bekal are these?” Then duty called, and the warlike voice of the representative of O’Driscoll’s warrior race, woke the three brides and bridegrooms up in a hurry.
Seeing the colossal form of O’Driscoll standing over them, they at first
took him for Beelzebub, and gave a yell that was heard at Sandgate! The ladies
completed their toilet in record time, and the sad procession of six were
marched down to the cells and locked up. They were brought up next day, and,
after a severe reprimand, discharged. One of them was a humorist. He said they
all went to the clergyman to get married, and as it was a wet night and rather
late when they arrived, they did not like to disturb him before morning! There
was necessarily a great future before that man, in fact he became in after years
a Brisbane alderman, and
what giddier height could any man attain?
The bride of the dark gentleman settled in Albert Street, where she had a
home for years, renowned for its hospitality to paying guests! Finally she
captivated a well off gentleman from the bush, and he married her and took her
home, and she became the mother of some very fine children, and was an exemplary
wife. She had proved the truth of the adage that virtue is its own reward!
To mention her descendants would be to heave a bombshell into a circle of
some of Brisbane’s most
select society, so we merely shed a tear and pass on to the next. It may be as
well to mention, however, that Wilson’s yardman was responsible for the party in
the hay loft. Wilson always said a short prayer when he thought of the horrors
of that awful night.
A well known son of that dear old clergyman married the widow of squatter
Clapperton. She was originally a Miss Kendall, a very accomplished, fine girl,
who was educated at the Brisbane Convent
Graham Lloyd Hart was the three year old son of his well known father of
that name, founder of the legal firm of Roberts and Hart, merged into Hart, Mein
and Flower, then Hart and Flower, then Hart, Flower and Drury, and finally
Flower and Hart. Hart was one of the directors in the troubled times of the
Queensland National Bank. The child died on April 10, 1874.
bold the flight of Passion’s wandering wing,
soft the step of Reason’s firmer trend,
calm and sweet the victories of life,
terrorless the triumphs of the grave.”
death itself there can be nothing terrible, for the act of death annihilates
sensation, but there are many roads to death, and some of then justly
formidable, even to the bravest; but so various are the modes of going out of
the world, that to have been born may have been a more painful thing than to
die, and to live may be more troublesome than either.”
God! It is a fearful thing
the human soul take wing,
shape, in any mood,
seen it rushing forth in blood,
seen it on the breaking ocean,
with a swollen convulsive motion,
seen the sick and ghastly bed
delirious with its dread.”
Among the un-recorded
dead is a half caste named “Macinnon,” who died in 1869. He was the son of an old pioneer
“Paddy Macinnon,” who was out in 1847 with McPherson, on Mount Abundance
station, which he had taken up on Sir Thomas Mitchells’ description in
Paddy was stockman for
Macpherson, and is described as a wild character, who lived for years with the
blacks. When the blacks finally drove Macpherson off the station, he gave Paddy
all the stock that was left.
In years afterwards,
Paddy made periodical trips to Dalby or Drayton, with a small mob of fat cattle,
and had a wild spree while the proceeds lasted.
There was no Roma
before 1862, in fact a sketch of it in 1864 shows a primitive settlement of half
a dozen houses and the post office. Paddy had the usual platonic affection with
an aboriginal lady, whose name was “Concern,” who bore him a son, the usual
result of platonic affections that are prolonged beyond a reasonable limit, and
when Paddy died at Forester’s public house on the Condamine in 1861, the boy,
whose native name was “Wyreela,” passed into other hands, and finally reached Brisbane, where he died in
1869, aged 21 years, the cause of death being inflammation of the lungs. He is
buried in the lowest part of the Church of England ground at Paddington.
Buried near him, in the same month, was an old ex-convict named Tom Davis, who came out with the convict ship, Eudora, in 1838. After the vessel left Liverpool, someone confessed to committing the crime for which Davis was sentenced, and a pardon for him came out on the next ship. Davis worked on Captain Cadell’s steamer, the “Lady Auguste,” the first vessel that ever ascended the Murray. The Governor of South Australia, Sir Henry Young, was on board that pioneer ship. Davis also worked, in 1846, for the Tyson brothers, the afterwards well known Jimmy Tyson, and his brother, on some country they took up at the junction of the Lachlan and Murrumbidgee. Davis came to Brisbane in 1858, and went up to the disastrous Canoona gold rush, on the Fitzroy. He returned to Ben and was engaged by Murray Prior for Maroon station, where he remained for twelve months, and thence went to Toolburra, until October 1867, when Nash discovered gold. Davis went to Gympie, did well there for two years, prospected in the Bopple scrub, got fever there, came to Brisbane, and died in a friend’s home in Turbot Street.
He had a brother lost
in the “Fiery Star,” burned at sea, on Good Friday, 1865.
restless impulse urged him to embark,
meet lone death on the drear ocean’s waste.”
Ella Lavinia, wife of
Daniel Skyring, was the ancestress of all the Skyrings of the present day.
Daniel owned all the land where All Hallows Convent stands, and used it chiefly
as a pineapple garden, where he grew some of the best pines in the market.
Likewise he owned, known as “Skyring’s quarries,” to the present time. While
Skyring grew fine pineapples and grapes, his wife and two daughters had charge
of a drapery establishment, the “Beehive” at the corner of Queen and Edward
Streets, where Hunter’s boot shop is today. Dan Skyring, jun., had a dairy farm
out at Kedron, and brought fresh milk to town. It was pure milk, as there were
no poisonous “preservatives” in those days. Daniel junior and his brother
Zechariah, went afterwards to reside at Gympie.
Old Mrs. Skyring died on July 27, 1863, aged 59, and the coffin was exhumed on March 26, 1882, and removed to the Toowong cemetery. On the tombstone we are told –
not for me, prepare to meet your God.”
Mrs. Skyring is now buried in the Toowong cemetery, near Governor Blackall, and over her is a handsome monument.
Her son, George, in after years, was owner of Baffle Creek Station, where his first wife died. She was a Miss Waldron of Fortitude Valley. George died at Gympie, where he was at the time Inspector of Slaughter Houses.
Miss Waldron was a
sister of Mrs. Steele, now widow of the late chemist Steele. She survived
Steele, and at present resides at South Brisbane. Zechariah Skyring
and his wife died within a week or two at Gympie. Daniel, who had the dairy at
Kedron, married a Miss Payne, daughter of Thomas Payne, a once well known and
much respected farmer at Oxley. He had four daughters, all handsome, fine
specimens of women. One married William Dart, now orchardist on the Blackall,
but at that time owner of Dart’s sugar mill, where the St. Lucia Estate is, on
the Brisbane River.
Another is the present Mrs. Reeves, of Toowong, and the fourth became Mrs.
Elferson, of Gympie, now a resident of Gympie. Daniel Skyring is still alive,
and residing retired on the North Coast. The Skyrings were one of the oldest Brisbane families.
George Dudley Webb, who died on September 11, 1870, aged 70, was secretary and general manager of the A.U.S.N. Company. He and W. J. Costin, the chemist, were two men chosen by the shareholders of the Brisbane Permanent Building Society, in 1863, to audit the books. Alfred Slaughter was the manager of the company, and old Robert Cribb was one of the principal shareholders. Cribb bossed Slaughter and had a free and easy way of taking deeds away to his own office, and some were not returned. This gave the shareholders an idea that there was something wrong, and hence the audit by Webb and Costin. No one doubted old Bobbie Cribb’s honesty, but he had a loose style of doing business, and the auditors found it necessary to enter a protest. This made the old fellow very wild, and he assailed the auditors in great style, but they all survived.
One of Webb’s
daughters, a girl named Alice, aged 19, died on November 14, 1864. His son,
Ernest Webb, was a well known man as Resident Secretary of the A.M.P. Society.
He married a daughter of L. A. Bernays. Ernest was an enthusiast in boating, and
was an active member of the rowing club. It is quite certain that Webb’s early
death was attributable to chiefly to an unlucky speculation in Mount Morgan
shares. He was one of the victims of Billy Pattison’s foolish bet of £10,000
that shares would reach £20.
Webb bought heavily and
found himself involved when shares were falling. The prospect of failure broke
his heart in a few days after the receipt of the bad news.
His brother, Harry
Webb, went in for pastoral pursuits, on the Logan.
Daniel Petersen, who
died on January 21, 1855, aged 46, was
a grocer and storekeeper, next McCabe’s wharf, South Brisbane. The business was
continued by Petersen and Younger, the son and son-in-law. One of the sons was
the afterwards well known Seth Petersen, who distinguished himself while in the
position of Registrar in Brisbane, and in after years
left for the south. One of his brothers was presiding at the recent Valley
William and Ellen Scarr
buried their only child at that time, on October 23, 1874. Scarr is now retired
on pension, and resides at “Alsatia” on Dornoch Terrace, South Brisbane. He was father of
Scarr, the footballer, who died recently from blood poisoning. Scarr senior had
a brother prominent in racing, and as handicapper in New South Wales. Another
brother, Frank Scarr, was a surveyor and land commissioner. A township was once
surveyed on Bowen Downs, near Muttaburra, and called “Scarrbury,” in honor of
Scarr, but the town never got beyond the name.
A year old child named
Moreton Bradley Lytton Hitchins died on February 25, 1876, his father being a
clerk in the Post Office in the days of Salisbury, R. T. Scott, Crosby, and
A young fellow named
William Ker Atchison, died in November 1868, aged only 27. He was a Customs
agent, and a general favourite, but consumption ended his career in the morning
of his days. In the words of Shelley he was
lovely youth, no mourning maiden decked,
lone couch of his everlasting rest;
virgins, as unknown he passed, have pined,
wasted for fond love of his wild eyes.”
In the north west
corner of the Church of England portion, is an old timber getter, who was a
cedar cutter on the Maroochy River, at the time of a remarkable tragedy in that
locality. The timber getters were all in camp on Sunday, and there was a wild
unholy revel on over proof rum. This began on Saturday, and continued over
Sunday. One man, a big, powerful fellow, took rather too much rum, divesting
himself of all his clothes, and started to chase the wife of one of the other
men. She ran into the hut, got the husband’s gun, and ran to another hut, the
rum maddened man in pursuit. She met him at the corner of the hut face to face
and fired, the charge of No 2 shot striking him in the stomach. In three minutes
he was dead. It was a dramatic and tragical scene!
At the same camp, some
of the blacks who were working for the cedar cutters were also given an
excessive share of rum, and three of them went to sleep on the beach at low
tide. The rum had paralysed them to such an extent that even the rising tide
failed to rouse them, so they were all drowned, and their three dead bodies were
found close together on the beach next morning. The other blacks took them away
and probably ate them, as they would not regard rum as a poison. In after years
it was said that beach was haunted, and there were men who declared they saw the
mad cedar getter racing round among the trees, and the drowned blacks walking on
the sand. Others said they saw the ghost of Stevens, the botanist, who was
murdered by the blacks in 1866, at the “Dead Man’s Waterhole,” near Mooloolah.
The rum in those days was good, and men saw nothing worse than ghosts. With the
rum of today men see nothing but devils, a specially ferocious class of devils
with iron teeth, arms like those of an octopus, and the green and yellow eyes of
Gilbert Elliott Gore
was a child buried on May 30, 1875. This child was evidently named from Gilbert
Elliott, the first Speaker in the first Queensland Parliament. He was proposed
by St. George R. Gore, seconded by Macalister, and chosen unanimously.
The original Gores took
up Yandilla and Tummaville stations on the Downs in the early forties. One of
these, Robert Gore, and his wife, Mary and child were drowned in the wreck of
the steamer, Sovereign, outside the South Passage, at Moreton Island, on the
11th of March, 1847. The Gore best known in Brisbane was Ralph Gore, who
was for years Immigration Agent, and Visiting Justice at St. Helena and Dunwich.
He married a daughter of E. I. C. Browne M.L.C., of the legal firm of Little and
Browne. One of Morehead’s jokes referred to this firm which he called the “Snipe
lawyers,” as “the snipe is little and brown, with an absurdly long bill.” They
had done some work for Morehead and the bill made him gasp for breath.
When Gore died, his widow resided for some time in their old home at New Farm. During a voyage to the old country with Captain Withers, of the Quetta, she and that giddy mariner, contracted a platonic friendship of the kind common among sea captains, and he deserted his wife to fly with his new found love, forgetting his wife as the false
“Theseus once in Dia
forgot his beautiful haired Ariadne.”
Old Browne, M.L.C., was
a wealthy man, and chief owner of the “Courier.” His share went to Mrs. Gore,
who is today chief owner of that journal. Of course, Captain Withers was aware
of Mrs. Gore’s financial position, but captains are never influenced by
considerations of wealth. They invariably marry for pure love, and live the
simple life – when there is no chance of any other variety.
Ralph Gore inherited a
title, and was Sir Ralph at the time of his death. This title is now borne by
his eldest son, who is an officer in the army. There were two other children who
are said to be still alive, and the infant “Gilbert Elliott” in the Paddington
William Holbrook, who
died on January 15, 1870, aged 36, was a young man employed as jeweler by
Flavelle Brothers and Roberts, of that date, and the neat headstone was erected
“as a token of respect by the employees” of that firm.
others come, so flows the wave on wave,
what these mortals call Eternity;
Deeming themselves the
breakers of the ocean,
they are but the bubbles, ignorant
foam is their formation.
peaceful shall thou end thy blissful days,
steal thyself from life by slow decays,
Unknown to pain in age
resign thy breath,
late stern Neptune points the shaft with death,
dark grave retiring as to rest,
people blessing, by thy people blessed!
long, ‘tis a last, ‘tis a beautiful rest,
all sorrow has passed from the brow and the breast,
the lone spirit truly and wisely may crave,
sleep that is dreamless, the sleep of the grave.
On July 1, 1873, a Scottish
visitor, traveling for his health, died in Brisbane. His name was John
Howie, and he died at the age of 50. The stone over his grave was placed there
by his nephew James Isles, whose mother was a Miss Howie. James Isles came to
Queensland in 1862, and in 1866 he and Tom Finney bought out the drapery
business of T. F. Merry in Fortitude Valley. They continued that business there
until 1870, when they removed to the cornet of Queen and Edward Streets, where
the original title of the firm is retained by the widely known Finney, Isles and
Co., of today, now fronting Edward and Adelaide Streets, and withdrawn from
their old Queen Street corner.
James Isles was a true
type of old Caledonia’s sons, and the physical vigor of his race was transmitted
to his own five sons, all of whom were champion athletes, whose performances are
recorded in Perry and Carmichael’s “Athletic Queensland.” The well known J. T.
Isles, of Isles, Love and Co., among other performances, won the 440 yards
Footballers’ Handicap in 1888. In 1887 he won the 150 yards handicap and the 440
Very sad was the untimely death of Willy Isles, one of the brothers, at an early age, the cause being peritonitis
."Fisherman’s Island was a dreary place, a patch of earth, a desert of mud, a
sea of water. The quantity of driftwood was surprising, and the multitudes of
centipedes truly alarming. At first we had some quantity of green grass, but A.
C. Gregory’s exploring party landed and cut it all for their horses on board
ship. We had to pull several miles to the muddy waterhole for every drop of
brackish water we had. James strained mine through all sorts of things, but it
never lost its muddy look and flavor. Influenza, fever, and ague were bad
amongst us, and were only indifferently combated by quinine and strong brandy
The James mentioned by
Grundy was a James Morton, afterwards killed by the blacks at Manumbah station.
In 1847 he had two mates killed beside him by the blacks, on the Clarence. His
own turn came afterwards. Grundy said Morton had a mortal fear of blacks. His
brother, Charley Morton, was either a first or second mate on the Boomerang, and
he died suddenly one night at Mercer’s Hotel at Kangaroo Point, and was buried
John Cook was a chemist
in the Valley, the only chemist there 55 years ago, and his business was
afterwards purchased by W. T. Costin, the present veteran Valley chemist, the
oldest now in Queensland. Cook, the old time pill pounder, sleeps in the
Perhaps his soul is proscribing a teaspoonful of Celestial nectar, some
ambrosial nepenthe, to angels with a “tired feeling” in the Elysian fields. And
we may be sure it is “a tablespoon three times a day.”
John Pound, who died on
July 14, 1875, aged 55, was father of Jonathan Pound, whose son is the present
chairman of the Southport Shire Council. Jonathan is still in robust health, and
owns a lot of property on the shores of the south end of Moreton Bay.
On August 8, 1868, a German named F. M. Raaaba, was buried, aged 57. In the year 1856, a German family of that name came to Brisbane in the ship Helena. One of the sons, a boy aged 13, named Charles, became, in after years, a prominent resident of Maryborough, where he finally settled in 1875, after years of teamster work to and from the stations on the Burnett. From team driving he went to hotel business, and kept the Royal Exchange Hotel, in Adelaide Street. In 1894, he became an alderman, and has been a good and useful citizen. Will some Maryborough man kindly write and say what became of him.
George Hall, who died
on October 18, 1855, aged 31, was a clerk in the firm of Christopher Newton
Brothers of Sydney. He came to Brisbane for the benefit of
his health, and added one more to the victims of consumption.
It was usual in those
early days for consumptive people to come north in the hope of recovering in the
climate of Moreton Bay, but they were usually in too advanced a stage.
Among the old time
shepherds buried at Paddington, was Harry Brown, who was shepherding on
Burrandowan station, in 1855, when it was owned by Phillip Friell and Gordon
Sandeman, who bought it from the first owner, Henry Stewart Russell, who took it
up in 1843, the first station on the Burnett. Several shepherds and
hotel-keepers were killed on Burrandowan, and Harry Brown was speared through
the side. Shepherding was a dangerous occupation for the first twenty years on
the Burnett and Mary. Brown finally died at Brisbane in 1861, while in
the service of the first “Brisbane Club,” which had
only started the previous year, the first meeting to organize having been held
in the office of D. F. Roberts. The first ballot for member was held on March 1,
1860, and the first club room was on the premises of W. A. Brown, the sheriff,
in Mary Street. The first committee included Sheppard Smith, of the Bank of New
South Wales, E. S. Elsworth of the A. J. S. Bank, and Nehemiah Bartley. They
drafted the rules and engaged the first servants, among whom was Harry Brown,
who never quite recovered from that Burrandowan spear wound.
Since Brown’s time, the
modest pioneer club, in the one room in Mary Street, has grown into the
Queensland Club, housed today in the palatial building facing the Gardens and
A girl named Sarah Ann
Pratten died in 1859, aged 23, the age – from 23 to 26 – fatal to so many young
women in the early days. Miss Pratten was an aunt of F. L. Pratten, present
Deputy Registrar of Titles in Brisbane. Her father, the
granddad of the present Prattens, came to Brisbane in the forties, and
was farming at Cowper’s Plains, today erroneously called “Cooper’s Plains,”
though named after Dr. Cowper, the first medical officer in the convict
settlement at Moreton Bay. Pratten senior died at the Plains and was buried
there. His son was one of the pioneer surveyors of what is now Queensland, and
did much useful work on the Darling Downs, Maranoa, and elsewhere.
He married a sister of
R. S. Warry, once a prominent Brisbane merchant, and she
became the mother of six sons and three daughters. One of the girls married a
son of the late Rev. J. H. Hassall; one married Leslie Tooth, grandson of W. B.
Tooth, who was one of the pioneers of Wide Bay, the present Maryborough
district. He was a brother of Atticus Tooth, who came from Kent in 1839, as a
cousin of the famous brewing Tooths of Sydney. He and W. B. Tooth took up Wide
Bay stations from which John Bales had been driven by the blacks. I n 1856,
Atticus Tooth held a station on the Mary River, including the present site of
Gympie, and had ten thousand sheep there, but a wet season, extending over
several months, drove him elsewhere, and he married, in 1869, a daughter of D.
R. Emmerson, of Bowen, and became one of the first squatters in the Port Denison
Four of G. L. Pratten’s sons are alive today, and the three daughters still survive, two married and one single. Harry Pratten is in the Bank of New South Wales, at Rockhampton, George in the Railway Department, Paul in the General Post Office, and F. L. Pratten is Deputy Registrar of Titles. The well known Tom Pratten, late secretary in the railway head office, died recently, and Arthur was killed in Bundaberg by falling over a balcony when walking in his sleep. The present Mrs. Pratten, mother of these sons, was a sister of Dr. Hugh Bell’s wife. Their brother, R. S. Warry, started business in Queen Street about the year 1853, and in the year, 1862, erected what was then the best building in Queensland, a large brick store next the Royal Hotel afterwards the first office of the Queensland National Bank. He had two brothers, Tom and Charles, both chemists, one in Brisbane, and one in Ipswich, and both died at an early age. Tom was a practical joker of an unusual type, and a gruesome tale describes the most remarkable of his performances. He invited the principal citizens to a special dinner, presumably in honor of his birthday, or his grandmother’s death, or his best girl coming of age, or an imaginary legacy left to him by his uncle in Spitzbergen. In the centre of the table was a large, round dish under a cover. “I think,” said this peculiar joker, “that we better start on the principal dish,” and he raised the cover to reveal the fresh head of an aboriginal, who had been hanged that morning! It was garnished like a ham, with frilled pink paper, and the thick mass of black hair had a dozen rosebuds inserted here and there. The company first gasped for breath, and then some of them fell over the backs of their chairs. Others fell over the doorstep rushing outside, and two fainted. A bombshell could not have scattered that dinner party more effectually. It was Tom Warry’s champion joke. He had induced the authorities to give him the head for scientific purposes, and he explained afterwards that this was in order to settle the great physiological problem of how fright affects various types of men! But Brisbane citizens were clean “off” Tom’s dinner parties forevermore.
Warry senior, father of
all the Warrys, died at the age of 78, as the final result of a fall between a
steamer and the wharf. One of his daughters married a Dr. Barton, and when he
died, she married Dr. Hugh Bell. One of her daughters, by Dr. Barton, is the
wife of the Hon. Albert Norton, M.L.C., and the other, who is still single,
resides with her sister.
fond kiss and then we sever,
farewell, alas, for ever!
in heart wrong tears I’ll pledge thee,
Warring sighs and groans
I’ll wage thee,
-no cheerful twinkle lights me,
despair around benights me.”
day without a cloud hath passed,
thou wert lovely to the last;
stars that shoot along the sky,
brightest as they fall from high.”
Where this silent marble weeps,
friend, a wife, a mother sleeps;
heart within whose sacred cell
peaceful virtues loved to dwell.
softly death succeeded life in her,
did but dream of Heaven, and she was there,
pains she suffered, nor expired with guise,
soul was whispered out with God’s still voice.”
An interesting historical character is James Charles Burnett, who died on July 18, 1854, aged 39. He was the oldest surviving son of William Burnett, of “Burnettland,” on the Hunter River, and he entered the service of the Survey Department in Sydney in 1834, when only 15 years of age. In 1842 he was deemed capable of conducting a general examination of the Great Dividing Range, which he followed to the 30th parallel and then came on to Brisbane. He was afterwards engaged on surveys on the Clarence and Richmond, and returned to Moreton Bay and did so much useful and excellent work that he was held in the highest esteem by his department, and by Governor Sir Charles Fitzroy, who requested that his name be given to the Burnett River, and that was done. Burnett had named the Fitzroy River in honor of Sir Charles, who repaid the compliment by requesting that Burnett’s name be given to the famous Burnett River, on which Bundaberg and Gayndah stand today.
Burnett, like most men
in those pioneer days, died at an early age, and was buried in the Church of
England cemetery at
Paddington, there being a large funeral at which the Rev. Robert Creyke
Shortly after his death, his horses were sold by auctioneer Bulgin, father of the late somewhat eccentric “Lord Bulgin,” well known to Brisbaneites. The sale will show the value of horses at that time. A bay colt sold for £14, a bay horse for £17, a grey colt for £36, a brown draught mare for £43, and grey draught for £35, and a solitary mule for £11.
There was much talk about a tablet to his memory, but so far we have not seen it, unless it is among the fallen and broken stones. The erection of a tablet or small monument to the memory of Burnett would come gracefully from a subscription among the people on the Burnett River.
He was one of the men
who made Queensland history in the old, wild, rough, days, when life was very
different from that of the present.
Arthur Henry Garbutt,
of Stockton-on-Tees, and Jane his wife, recall an old time Garbutt family who
lived at Coorpooroo, where Thomas C. Garbutt owned a large area of land. He was
the man who named Coorpooroo, a word which is sadly mispronounced, being always
called “Coorparoo,” whereas “Coorpooroo Jaggin” was the name of the South Brisbane tribe of
aboriginals, who pronounced the word Coor-poo-roo with accent on the second
Garbutt’s widow married
a Dr. Temple, who practiced in Brisbane and died here.
After old Garbutt’s death, his horse and buggy were bought by P. R. Gardon, the
genial old Caledonian, ex-Inspector of Stock. The horse was a dark chestnut,
afterwards owned by Robert Gray, the once well known Under Colonial Secretary,
and finally Railway Commissioner, whose first wife was a daughter of Dr. Dorsey,
of Ipswich, and sister of the wife of the late Sir Joshua Peter Bell. One of
Garbutt’s sons, and brother of the one who died at Cleveland, was squatting for
a time on the Logan. This was the F. O. Garbutt, who in after years held a
station property in the Herberton district, where he finally kept a hotel at the
Coolgarra Hot Springs. He was a big, powerful, specimen of a man. About 25 years
ago, he and the present writer entered what is now the York Hotel. Garbutt had a
misunderstanding with some aggressive person who had several friends present and
while he was engaged in a go-as-you-please combat with the man in front, he was
assailed by two of the man’s friends in the rear. This made it necessary for us
to take prompt action, and Garbutt and “we” cleared that private bar in one of
the shortest times on record. One victim wrote to the “Telegraph,” to ask
whether a Queensland magistrate who had broken two of his ribs in a bar room was
a suitable man to hold a Commission of the Peace? No name was mentioned, but he
referred to “we,” and there was no more about the little episode.
When Garbutt left the
Logan to go north, he was accompanied by Robertson, an old Logan squatter, who
afterwards took up Wyroona station on the Wild River, a tributary of the
Mitchell. Garbutt is now hotel keeper at Mount Molloy.
Paulus Bront was a
German seaman on board the steamer Shamrock, an old time steamer that ran to
Sydney from Brisbane in
the days when the small steamers Hawk, Swallow, and Bremer, built by Taylor
Winship, ran from Brisbane to Ipswich. The
first was the Experiment, built by James Canning Pearce.
Winship, in those days,
had a fine garden and orangery, from where the present Palace Hotel is along the
river west to the baths and the North Quay Ferry at South Brisbane. Paulus Bront, on
June 26, 1854, was walking ashore from the steamer on a plank, fell off, and was
drowned, as scores of men have been since then to the present time, at the Brisbane wharves.
The Swallow, of
Winship, and the Experiment, of Pearce, sank at the wharves in the river, the
Swallow drowning her steward as previously mentioned.
In a Doncaster cemetery is the following
quaint epitaph on two brothers:
lyeth two brothers by misfortune surrounded,
died of his wounds and the other was drowned.”
Charles Thomas Clay and
his wife Elizabeth, buried a five years’ old child on July 31, 1872. Clay was a
clerk in the Lands Office in Brisbane, but he got an
appointment in the Agent General’s Office in London and left Queensland.
The second daughter of
Montague Stanley, R.S.A., died on June 24, 1864, aged 22. Stanley, as the
R.S.A., indicates, was a member of the Royal Society of Artists, and practised
his profession in Edinburgh. He was, perhaps, the first professional artist
whose family came to Brisbane, and two of his
sons became well known men in Queensland. One was F. D. G. Stanley, the
Government Architect, who designed a great number of our public buildings,
including Parliament House and the Supreme Court, and the other was for many
years Engineer for Railways, connected with the department from the time the
first section of a Queensland railway was made in 1864, from Ipswich to the
Little Liverpool Range, a distance of 21 miles, by Peto, Brassey and Betts,
whose tender was for £86,900, or £4,000 a mile. The first Victorian railway cost
£38,000 per mile, South Australia £28,000, and New South Wales £40,000.
The Queensland line
from Ipswich to Dalby, crossing the Liverpool and main ranges, cost
Engineer Stanley, son
of artist Stanley, was a capable man, whose integrity was never questioned. The
first Queensland railways were by far the cheapest and most substantial of all
the first Australian tracks, and all constructed since under Stanley or Ballard
have held a deservedly high reputation.
Montague Stanley, the
artist, never came to Queensland! He died at Rothsay, in Scotland, but his sons
came to Queensland, and the mother and the rest of the family followed. H. C.
Stanley, the engineer, has four sons and four daughters one of whom, Pearlie
Stanley, married Victor Drury, the solicitor, now practicing at Dalby.
Architect F. D. G.
Stanley had three sons and four daughters. His son, M. T. Stanley married Mary
McIlwraith, daughter of Sir Thomas, and her sister Jessie married a Mr.
Gostling, now residing at Sherwood. M. T. Stanley is an architect, his brother
Ronald is in the Commissioner for Railways Office. One of H. C. Stanley’s sons,
also H. C., is now in Townsville, and another son, Talbot, is in charge of the
Gayndah extension. A son of F. D. G. Stanley, who died some years ago, is an
Inspector in the Works Office. H. C. Stanley, senior, was recently on a visit to
Brisbane, which he left
last Tuesday. He has an office in Sydney and a branch in Brisbane.
A man named George
Perrin, said to be a descendant of that Perrin who fought the heavy weight, bare
handed battle with Johnson, back in the eighteenth century, is buried in the
Church of England cemetery. Perrin was one of
the stockmen on Burrandowan, when that station was held by Philip Friell, and
Gordon Sandeman, who bought it from Stuart Russell, author of the “Genesis of
Friell was a man with a
remarkable history, which would make interesting reading, but would require at
least a chapter for itself. It is
enough here to say that he died of heart disease on board the steamer Argo, off
Cape Horn, on September 17, 1853, aged 48. He was a son of Captain Friell, who
was killed in India, while a captain in the Duke of Wellington’s Own Regiment.
Friell’s life was saved on Burrandowan by George Perrin. Friell was asleep under
a tree, holding the reins of his bridle, and Perrin was lying face downwards
about 20 yards away with his gun beside him. Hearing a slight noise, he raised
his head in time to see a tall black close to Friell, and just poising a
brigalow hand spear to drive through him. Perrin acted promptly, and the black
fell dead with his head within three yards of Friell, who awoke with great
Perrin was one of the
typical bushmen at the dinner given to the Duke of Edinburgh, in Brisbane, in 1868. The ball
to the Duke was given in Christopher Newton and Co.’s store, in Eagle Street. At
the dinner the Duke proposed the toast of “The Ladies.” Perrin, just for fun,
dined as he would have dined in a shepherd’s hut. He cut his bread in his hand,
and used his knife as a fork, drank his tea out of the saucer, with a noise like
a cow drinking the last water out of a puddle, and asked a horrified swell
opposite to “Chuck us over the mustard mate!”
Another joker, one of
the Coomera River Brinsteads, saw the humour of the situation, and posed as the
He and Perrin caused a
lot of amusement, and even the Duke had to smile. Perrin died in 1869, and was
buried during heavy rain. Even the grave was half filled with water running down
from the side of the ridge. Some grimly humorous bushman remarked “If some rum
were mixed with that water it would agree better with old George!”
Perrin had married an
immigrant girl, a most cantankerous person, who gave him an awful time, but one
day she was bitten by a black snake and died within an hour. George afterwards
said that the snake died first! In a Devonshire cemetery is the following
“Margery, wife of Gideon
Underneath this stone doth
was she e’er known to do,
her husband told her to.”
That would have suited Mrs.
Perrin’s gravestone, also, we grieve to say, a lot of other ladies’
Henry George Morris,
who died in1865, was a son of the wife of Judge Lutwyche, by her first husband,
whose name was Morris. Harry was a young man of only 25 when he died from the
effects of some gastric trouble, contracted when on a visit to Kedron Brook. A
fall over a stump aggravated the trouble, in fact was supposed to be the fatal
agent, and he died on the following day. His sister, Miss Morris, step-daughter
of Judge Lutwyche, is now the wife of A. G. Vaughan, the well known Government
Judge Lutwyche after
whom the Brisbane suburb
was named, invariably treated Miss Morris with all the consideration he could
have given his own daughter and recognised her as such in his will.
Paul Lyons Burke, who
died on August 26, 1868, aged 35, was secretary of the Brisbane Hospital and a
prominent member of the Masonic body, who gave him a Masonic funeral.
is true love though given in vain, in vain;
sweet is Death who puts an end to pain:
not which is sweeter, no, not I
art thou sweet! Than bitter death must be;
thou art bitter; sweet be death to me.
Love, if death be sweeter, let me die.
love, that seems not made to fade away,
death that seems to make us loveless clay.
not which is sweeter, no not I.
would follow love, if that could be;
needs must follow death, who calls for me;
and I follow, I follow! Let me die.
A young man named
Robert Mauley died on February 14, 1855, aged 23. This rather rare name was once
famous among the warriors of a past age. In Scott’s “Lord of the Isles,” is the
following passage, giving some of the English knights who fought under Edward at
Montague, and Mauley came,
Courtney’s pride and Percy’s fame;
known too well in Scotland’s war
Falkirk, Methven and Dunbar,
broader yet in after years
Cressy red and fell Poitiers.”
It may be that the youth in the Paddington cemetery had some of the blood of those old warrior ancestors.
A man named George
Arthur Smith died on March 24, 1868. Smith came to Victoria in 1861, in a ship
called the Donald Mackay, which on the same trip brought out the late Bishop
Quinn, and Dr. Cani, who afterwards became Bishop of Central Queensland. Also
the well known surveyor P O 'Kelly, of Maryborough, a fine old Irish gentleman,
a boy of the olden time, who arrived there on January 1, 1863, the year in which
no rain fell for ten months, followed by a wet season of four months. George
Smith was a ganger on the railway, when the tunnel was being cut through the
Little Liverpool Range, and afterwards a sub-contractor under John Gibbons, a
contractor who gave his name to “Gibbon’s camp,” known as such for many years on
the Toowoomba railway line.
Gibbons was once
partner with Randall in railway and building contracts in New South Wales and
the well known “Randall’s Terrace” of nine houses in Newtown, in Sydney, bears
Randall’s name as the builder and first owner. House no 9 had the credit of
Smith was injured in a
premature blast on the railway, and was brought to the Brisbane hospital, where he
died, aged 47. John Gibbons had a stone erected over his grave, but it is
amongst those that are smashed. Gibbon’s widow in after years married Detective
Sergeant McGlone, who came from Sydney to Queensland, and arrested Frank
Gardiner, the bushranger, at Apia Creek, on the road to Clermont where he was
living under the name of Christie, and had a small store and butcher’s
An old time honored
Queensland pioneer family are recalled by the graves of John Edmund and William
Alexander, two children of John and Margaret Hardgrave. The first was the third
son, who died on October 30, 1860, aged a year and a half, and the other died 11
days afterwards at the age of five and a half. He was the first son. The late
John Hardgrave was born in Louth, and educated in Dublin. His wife, who survives
him, was a Miss Blair, a very handsome woman, who was born at Ballymeena, in
Ireland, within 50 yards of the house in which General White was born, and after
the death of her parents came to Queensland with her uncle Reed (afterwards
engineer of the steamer Hawk), in 1849, and was married six months afterwards to
John Hardgrave. The young couple at first resided in one of three brick cottages
built up in the convict days as residences for the officials, and situated where
Ned Sheridan’s shop is today, near the Longreach Hotel, where the convict
workshop and lumber yard stood in those old wild days. The soldier’s barracks
were on the corner now occupied by
the Geological Museum. One of the brick cottages was afterwards fixed up as the
first Church of England in what is now Queensland. Mrs. Hardgrave saw that
church opening by the Bishop of Newcastle, she attended there for fifty years
and then saw it pulled down. How many people go to church for 50 years?
She had five sons and
three daughters, including the two boys who died 47 years ago, and one daughter,
Mrs. Campbell, who died recently. John Hardgrave, who died last year, was one of
Brisbane’s best known
men, and one of the most respected. At death he was chairman of the Board of
Waterworks, a position he held for many years.
Among the graves is a
son of the Rev. Thomas Jones, a schoolboy, who was a great favourite. On the day
of the funeral the scholars of St. John’s school would not allow the coffin to
be placed on the hearse. They formed relay parties and carried it all the way to
There too, is the son
of John Scott, who was once Chairman of Committees, and lived for many years in
the house at Milton, close to the railway cutting on the north side of the
Near him, in the old
house on the hill, in what was “Walsh’s Paddock”, lived the redoubtable Henry
Walsh, father of the beauteous “Coojee,” and once Speaker of the House. Beyond
Scott, at Auchenflower, lived Sir Thomas McIlwraith, and within 50 yards of the
brewery was “Papa” Pinnock, P.M. When the famous “Steel Rail” discussion was
raging, a railway guard was promptly sacked for calling to the driver to call at
Ann Eliza Young, a girl
of 16, died in 1874. Her father was a Chinese settler who was once a clerk in
the old firm of J. and G. Harris, and afterwards ferryman between North and
South Brisbane from the
present Queen’s Wharf at the foot of Russell Street. He married a woman of good
family, her brother having an interest in the firm of R. Towns and Co. Young was
a cook on her father’s station.
One of Young’s sons,
Ernest, was for a time teacher in the South Brisbane school, and another
kept a fish shop for some time in Melbourne Street, near Gray Street. A
daughter, Katie Young, a good looking girl, was for years with a firm of
storekeepers in Boundary Street, then married a son of Benjamin Babbidge, once
Mayor of Brisbane, had
two children, and died of typhoid fever. Old Young and his wife still reside in
Jane Orr, who died on
March 15, 1863, aged 58, was wife of a Constable Orr of that period, and mother
of three daughters and a son. The daughter Maggie became the wife of Peter
Phillips, the present day tailor, and her sister Jane, who remained single,
still resides in Boundary Street, near Vulture Street. Her sister Phoebe and the
brother died long ago. Constable Orr on one occasion was escorting some
prisoners to Sydney. The steamers in those days called at Newcastle, and while
there it appears that Orr’s vigilance was relaxed long enough to allow the
prisoners to escape, and as a result of that he left the police force.
Very sad was the
drowning of a handsome young fellow who was a nephew of Dr. Simpson, who had
charge of the Government stock at Redbank. The nephew was an only son of Dr.
Simpson’s sister, who was a widow in the old country. The doctor sent for this
nephew to come out and stay with him, intending to make him a present of
“Wolston” of which Dr. Simpson was the first owner. The nephew, who was only 27
years of age, was crossing the river from Wolston to the coal pits, the boat
capsized, and he was drowned. This was a cruel blow to Dr. Simpson, who soon
afterwards sold Wolston to the late Matthew Goggs, and went to England.
A sister of Goggs
married Captain Coley, who was once Sergeant-at-Arms, and died by his own hand
in the small cottage still standing in George Street, near Harris Terrace. One
of his daughters was married to C. B. Dutton, once Minister for Lands.
James Fleming, who died
on March 7, 1872, aged 55, is said to have been the squatter who once held
Burenda station, on the Warrego.
Jane Campbell, who died
on May 22, 1866, aged 29, was the wife of Constable Alexander Campbell, who at
the time was stationed with a detachment of Native Police at Humpybong. Governor
Bowen was there on a visit on the day Mrs. Campbell died.
Rosina Cox, who died on
April 17, 1873, aged 29, was the youngest daughter of Sarah and William Cox. Cox
was a warder in the gaol, and died within the last two years.
Joseph William Saville,
who died on March 5, 1869, aged 36, was a groom employed in Duncan McLennan’s
livery stables, and he was thrown from his horse and killed in George
Richard H. Watson, who
died on May 5, 1868, aged 61, was the builder of the Commercial Hotel, in Edward
Street, and kept a boarding house near there. One of his sons was afterwards the
well-known Watson, the plumber, who became one of the mayors of Brisbane.
Thomas Palmer, who died
on July 12, 1867, aged 60, was one of the two brothers who started a ginger beer
and cordial factory beside the present police court.
From the Palmers the
business passed into the hands of one who was then in their service, the
well-known Marchant of the present day.
Deacon Ferguson was a child of a year and 10 months, and died on September 18,
1865, the mother being a sister of John Petrie, and aunt of the present Toombul
Petrie. She was the wife of the late Inspector of Works, Ferguson, one of the
biggest men in Queensland, and with a heart to match. Among his numerous works
he superintended the erection of the lighthouse on Sandy Cape in 1872, when the
blacks carried all the material and rations from the beach to the top of the
sand hill, 315 feet in height, exactly the same height as the hill on which the
Double Island lighthouse stands. Bob was a giant with a giant’s strength. One
night in Mrs. McGregor’s Hotel in Rockhampton, the same grand old Highland woman
who afterwards kept the Great Northern Hotel in Cooktown, an aggressive
Hibernian gentleman, named Barry, whose brother married Miss McGregor, made
himself unpleasant, and finally sparred up to Ferguson, as a bantam rooster
might spar at a cassowary. Bob rose, quietly grabbed Barry by the neck of the
coat and the northwest cape of his pants, and heaved him head first, not at the
door, but against a thin partition. Barry went through this partition, took half
of it with him, and disappeared! Then Ferguson sat down and ordered drinks for
the company as if nothing had happened.
A man named Harry
Burrows died on March 9, 1862, aged 45. He was working for Crown Lands
Commissioner and Surveyor J. C. Bidwell, when that official was running a marked
tree line from Maryborough to Brisbane. That line went
through the present site of Gympie, and it is certain that Bidwell found gold
there 15 years before any was found by Nash. That was clearly proved in after
years by G. W. Dart, who was one of Bidwell’s party, and who wrote an account of
the gold find to one of the Maryborough papers. Dart saw the gold, and said
Bidwell showed it to many of his friends. Bidwell never finished his track, as
severe privations in the scrubs in wet weather, with poor food, laid the
foundations of an illness that killed him, and he died and was buried at the
mouth of Tinana Creek, where can be seen today, the huge mango trees which
Bidwell planted, the first ever grown on Queensland soil.
He was the man who sent
specimens of the bunya trees to Kew Gardens, and today that tree bears Bidwell’s
name, “Araucaria Bidwelli,” though the honor should have gone to old Andrew
Petrie, who was certainly the first discoverer, in fact the bunya for a time was
actually called “Pinus Petriana.” Harry Burrows was out with Bidwell in the
worst part of his trip, and had one or two narrow escapes from the blacks He
afterwards worked for Atticus Tooth, and also for J. D. Mactaggart, an old Wide
Bay pioneer who died at Kilkivan, on January 16, 1871, an uncle of the well
known stock and station Mactaggart brothers of Brisbane today. Burrows was
away south in 1854, on the Hunter River, and in a letter written by him in 1861,
to an old Brisbane
resident, he said he was in Newcastle when an aboriginal named Harry Brown was
burned to death while intoxicated. This was the “Brown” who was one of the two
blacks with Leichhardt in his second expedition of 1847, when no one ever
An old resident says
that in the cemetery is a
man named George Smith, who died in 1863. He tells us that this man was once
tried for his life on a charge of murder, somewhere on the Downs. Evidently he
means a George Smith, who was one of two men, the other being John Morris, tried
in 1854, for the murder of James Tucker, on Gowrie Station. Both men were
acquitted, as the evidence showed Tucker’s death to be the result of a drunken
row. Two doctors were witnesses, Dr. Buchanan and Dr. Labatt, and they gave two
totally different versions. One swore he saw no wounds to Tucker’s head, and the
other swore he was dreadfully knocked about! There being nobody to decide when
doctors disagree, the evidence went for nothing.
Morris had a brother
who was killed at Oxley, on the day Sir Charles Fitzroy, the Governor of New
South Wales, in which Queensland was then included, was on his way to Ipswich,
accompanied by Captain Wickham, the Brisbane P.M., whose name is
borne by Wickham Terrace, the private secretary, Captain Gennys, and police
escort. They had lunch with Dr. Simpson, at Woogaroo, and were met by a big
escort from Ipswich, where the party had supper at Colonel Gray’s house, and
there was a swell ball the next day, and an address was read by R. J. Smith, who
was then M.L.C. in the Sydney Council, representing Wide Bay, Burnett, and the
Maranoa. Picture a man representing those three electorates today!
Morris was riding after
horses, about a mile beyond the Rocky Water Holes at the spot where old Billy
Coote had his mulberry farm in 1876, and his horse ran him against a tree and
killed him, about the time the Governor was passing. His body was brought to Brisbane in a two horse
dray, and buried at Paddington.
November 1, 2002
Courier Mail, Brisbane: The ground beneat the old Lang Park is giving up its secrets of early life in Brisbane, writes Craig Johnstone.
She had bright red hair, was tall and well-built. At some stage in her short life, she had badly broken her left leg. Most likely her family had plenty of money. No one yet knows how or when she died, although it was at least 127 years ago, but where she was buried is no mystery at all.
The woman with the red hair was one of about 5000 buried at the site of Queensland's largest public works project- the $280 million Suncorp Stadium.
Her fully preserved skeleton and coffin (complete with some of her hair and scented wood shaving) have been exhumed by a team of University of Queensland archeologists who worked at the site between August 2001 and May 2002.
Her remains were among 397 the team excavated and removed from the stadium site, used as a burial ground between 1843 and 1875. It was Brisbane's first major cemetery after free settlement.
Convicts who died in Brisbane's earliest days as a penal colony were buried near where the William Jolly Bridge now stands.
The archeologists, working for the Public Works Department and operating under rules set by the Environmental Protection Agency, have dug up priceless details of early Brisbane.
Along with remains of the dead, belt buckles, coffin handles and religious medals, all more than a century old, were found. But it is the human remains they found and took from the site that are bound to generate the most interest.
The exhumations involved remains from the Anglican, Catholic, and Presbyterian sections of the cemetery, as well as 16 sets of remains from an Aboriginal cemetery. More than half the coffins the team discovered were less than 150 cm long, suggesting that most of those buried in the cemetery were children.
The team recently submitted the first of a series of reports to the Government, detailing the results of the salvage and how they went about their excavations in a place that most people now regard as a sporting venue.
The painstaking work of analyzing what they found is still going on in University laboratories. By February, 2003, the team should have compiled a report detailing discoveries about the remains.
This salvage has attracted much less controversy than the excavation of graves that occurred in 1990 at the time of the Hale Street redevelopment. The row over moving the remains of the dead grew so heated back then that an Anglican priest accused then Lord Mayor Sallyanne Atkinson of grave-robbing.
This time, however, the Beattie Government did everything it could to avoid being accused of desecration.
In August last year, an ecumenical service was held in the stadium's western stand to recognise the site's former use as a cemetery. Only those graves that would be damaged by the stadium redevelopment were salvaged by the archeologists.
That is, where excavations for the redevelopment would cut below the level of the burials, those graves were salvaged. But the remains of thousands will stay where they were interred.
How the team undertook their work is as fascinating as what they found.
First, they needed to excavate and remove the fill that had been dumped in the area since it ceased being used as a cemetery in 1914. That unearthed "grave stains," or patches where the trained eye can tell a coffin had been buried.
"Once a grave site had been identified, a 20 tonne excavator was used to scrape the surface away, centimetre by centimetre with a batter bucket, until wood or bone was detected," the archeologists report said.
"As the salvage was of a cemetery area, it was considered inappropriate to open large areas of the sit, therefore the heavy machinery was used to target the grave sites."
Talks are going on between the university and the Brisbane City Council as to where to re-inter the remains. It is likely they will end up at Toowong Cemetery.
All the material from the Aboriginal cemetery was moved to a secret sacred storage area at the University's anthropology museum. The Aboriginal remains are not being examined.
They will stay in the museum until negotiations between the Council and representatives of the Turrbal people come up with a suitable location for their re-interment.
The team was lead by Dr. Jon Prangnell, of the University's archeological services unit. Prangnell said DNA tests were now being carried out to discover what diseases those buried at the site might have suffered.
Tests will screen for up to 2000 diseases, including influenza, smallpox, tuberculosis, even leprosy.
The team also is performing a population study to try to differentiate the remains into ethnic backgrounds. What the team already has discovered is fascinating enough.
"People weren't buried with much at all," Prangnell said. "With the Catholics, we found a few crucifixes, rosary beads and medallions. But I don't think we found one wedding ring."
As he says in his report, "All other graves were devoid of personal items (except a ceramic plate in the Presbyterian cemetery)."
"This is somewhat surprising. There is no archeological evidence to suggest that once coffins were placed in the ground they were dug up at any later time.
"Either people did not intend to be buried with their possessions or their possessions did not make it into the ground with them."
One other interesting discovery was that none of the graves was the accepted six feet deep.
The gravediggers went only 1 metre down before striking hard bedrock, and many of the coffins were just below the surface.
The team found that many of the coffins were pressed flat, with the lid resting on the base- probably the result of the weight of the fill dumped in the area when it ceased to be used as a cemetery.
Of the woman whose remains were intact, Prangnell said: "My guess is she was a big, red-headed Catholic woman, but probably of some wealth."
The break in her left leg meant that it was about 5 cm shorter than her right.
But the archeologists have found no sign of grinding in the pelvic area, suggesting that she died soon after her femur bone had healed.
Her body lay under what is now the stadium's playing surface, just near the north-east corner of the field.
The slope from Petrie Terrace down to the Stadium originally ended at a swamp, near where Castlemaine Street now runs. Prangnell speculates that water flowing down the slope to the swamp helped preserve the woman's remains.
And her identity?
"Other than DNA screening all of Brisbane, we won't know her relatives," he said.
The Queensland State Archives holds some records of the old cemetery, but these are mostly related to the bodies exhumed in 1913 and re-interred at Toowong Cemetery.
Finding out who she was is going to take some prolific detective work.