Saturday, 22 June 2019

A Shore-based Whaling Station

Some useful notes & quotes from Susan Lawrence, author and Professor of Archaeology at La Trobe University who has studied the sites of colonial whaling stations (See References)

Essentials for a shore-based whaling station:

  • A sheltered Harbour, safe anchorage for ships leaving supplies and picking up barrels of oil.(WFM)Close to migrating whales. " ... the station nearest the headland was preferred as it was closest to the whaling grounds." If whales came from the South, then the south headland was preferred. (WFM)
  • A lookout (tall tree, headland, island etc. Whales came from a known direction, eg South in Spencer's Gulf Remains of eg stone shelters can sometimes be seen at lookout points.(WFM) 
  • Tryworks. Trypots or tuns with some kind of support and fire underneath, maybe a stone slab platform for workers to stand on. Had to be away from water because water spoiled the oil. (WFM)
  • Cool, damp storage for barrels of oil. (WFM)
  • Huts and workshops positioned upwind of the smelly, smokey tryworks, but on level ground (WFM)
  • Fresh water and building materials, both stone and timber, though any of these could be brought in by ship if necessary. (WFM)
  • A gently sloping beach for hauling up carcasses and blubber; a natural rock platform was convenient for cutting in.(WFM)

My Notes on Fishery Beach: 

Location: Whales would have come from the South, so most likely lookout would have been on the Southern headland. Anchorage presumably okay. The beach is very stony, with rock outcrops extending into the sea and the drop to the water's edge is steep in 2019. Might have been different in early-mid nineteenth century.
Level sites: Land above the beach consists of terraces. Clark's hut located on one of these. Likely also workers' accomodation, though much has been obliterated by the building of a silver smelting works on the same site.
Building materials: There may have been timber, but it's gone now. Plenty of large slabs of slate available on the shore and creek bed and small, rounded stones for paths also on the shore.
Location of tryworks unknown, but probably far end of the beach

Fishery Beach. Slate outcrops provided
materials for floors and chimneys. Kangaroo Island
can be clearly seen on the horizon.
Image copyright Anne Tichborne 2019

Fishery Beach looking North, showing flat terraces
useful for buildings. There was even a vegetable garden.
The location of the manager's hut is the area of reeds
in the middle ground, near the creek and sheltered by
a southern headland. Image copyright Anne Tichborne 2019

My Notes on Encounter Bay:

Locations were: near the Bluff (Rosetta Head) with the lookout stationed on summit of the Bluff - a flag signal was used. On Granite Island / Nulcoowarra with lookout at summit of the island. 
 The famous sketch of Christmas Day 1850 shows a very straight row of slab huts with substantial if roughly built (stone, not brick?) chimneys, and a couple of slab sheds. The roofing material looks same as the slab walls, though one or two may have been thatched. The prevailing wind is from the south. No sight of tryworks, but a structure  on a slope of the Bluff could be shear-legs, though I understand this was on a floating platform at least some of the years whales were hunted at Encounter Bay.
The anchorage was not so very safe - three ships incl Solway were lost in a gale. Ships eventually learned to anchor in the lee of Granite Island.


  • The Archaeology of Whaling in Southern Australia and New Zealand Susan Lawrence, editor 1998 (AWS)
  • Whalers and Free Men. Life on Tasmania's Colonial Whaling Stations by Susan Lawrence Australian Scholarly Publishing Pty Ltd, Melbourne 2006 (WFM)

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Mary Louisa Connor 1830 - 1886

Born in Hobart, Van Diemen's Land, Australia 
Daughter of John Connor (a sailor) and JaneThomas
[no known siblings]
Wife of Joseph Stone — married (to after ) in Adelaide, South Australia.
De facto wife of Thomas "Tom" Clark, whaler and farmer
Wife of Francis Laurence Buckler/Buckley — married (to before ) in Port Elliot, South Australia,

Mother of Mary Ann (Stone) Rix, Robert Clark, Eliza Jane (Clark) Chapman, Louisa Elizabeth (Buckley) Stone and Frank (Buckler) Buckley (may have passed away 13 Jan 1868 at Yankalilla) John Buckley (died as an infant)
Mary Louisa died in Adelaide, South Australia
 Mary Louisa Connor was born in Hobart-town in the British Colony of Van Diemen's Land on 9th November 1830, to parents Jane Connor nee Thomas and John Connor, Seaman. The family was still in Hobart in 1834, when Mary was baptised. (See Note 1.)

On 4 May 1846 a Mary Connor departed Hobart on the ship Adelaide for Port Phillip.
In 1847 Mary was in Adelaide in the Colony of South Australia, where she married Joseph Stone in Holy Trinity Church Adelaide, when she was still a minor aged 17yrs. Her father's name is not recorded in the marriage register,

In 1848 Joseph and Mary had a daughter, Mary Ann Stone, at Port Adelaide.

In 1849, Mary left Joseph and ran away with a man named John Harris. They left Port Adelaide in a boat belonging to the Whale Fisheries. According to a witness Mary lived for a while with Harris at Encounter Bay. Harris subsequently went to the Victorian gold diggings and Mary then lived with a whaler named Tom Clark . Clark undertook to manage the whaling station at Fishery Creek, south of Cape Jervis from May 1850 and newspaper reports of the time have him living there with "Mrs Clark" who must have been Mary Louisa because in 1851, Mary gave birth to Tom's son, Robert Clark. In 1858, Mary (calling herself Louisa Stone) and Tom had a daughter, Eliza Jane. (They could not have married because Mary Louisa was still married to Joseph Stone.)

In 1859, Joseph Stone petitioned the South Australian Supreme Court for a divorce, naming his wife Mary Louisa and Thomas Clark as co-respondents. At the time, Mary was "living with her mother at Encounter Bay" (There is evidence that her mother was by this time Mrs Jane Thompson, wife of John aka William Thompson, licensee of the Fountain Inn at Encounter Bay.

The Fountain Inn in 1933.

Mary Louisa evidently did not raise any of her first 3 children. A court hearing in 1861 reveals what happened to her firstborn, Mary Ann Stone.

Mary's daughter Mary Ann Stone was raised by Mary's mother, landlady of the Fountain Inn, Encounter Bay. (See Note 4.) Mary Ann married whaler Ezra alias Anthony Moore in October 1861, when she was only 13 years old. There was a court case because Moore made a false statement about parental consent. Mary Louisa, now Mrs Frank Buckley, gave evidence. (See Note 3.) The court allowed the marriage.
Mary's daughter by Tom Clark, Eliza Jane, later lived with her grandmother on Kangaroo Island, where she was known as Eliza Jane Sylvia Thompson.

Robert Clark's obituary suggests that Robert went with his father to Kangaroo Island, On reaching adulthood, Robert acquired land for himself on the Island and became a well known farmer and grazier.
Now free of Joseph Stone, Mary Louisa married Frank Laurence Buckley/Buckler on the 14th January 1861  and their daughter Louisa was born 5 days later on 19th January 1861. Buckley was a very young man, only 20 years old at the time of the marriage. Mary Louisa gave her age as 24!  Buckley must have appeared only recently on the scene if he believed this, and surely could not have known about his new wife's son aged 10 and two daughters, 3 and 13 yrs old.

A son, Frank Buckley, was born in 1863  at Encounter Bay and passed away in 1868.

In 1865 Louisa Buckley of Rapid Bay applied to the Destitute Board and was assigned two rations for one month. 
In 1868 Mary Louisa Buckley, formerly Stone nee Connor gave birth to another son, John, without giving the name of the father. She called herself Lewisa Buckley and gave her residence as Rapid Bay.  She would have been 38 years old. The child only survived 7 weeks.  (Note 8).

Before 1869 was up, Francis Buckley had deserted Mary Louisa. A notice was published in the Police Gazette in December 1869. A warrant was issued from the Normanville Police Station but Buckley was thought to have gone to Queensland.  It seems he never returned and Mary Louisa, with two young children, had to try and survive without him.

Between 1873 and 1885 a Louisa Buckley, born in Hobart, ship of arrival not given, was admitted to the Adelaide Hospital 4 times. She gave various addresses in Adelaide and her occupation was recorded first as servant, then twice as prostitute and lastly as "Carwoman" (charwoman?). An 11 year old Louisa Buckley is recorded as being admitted at a similar time. This could have been Mary Louisa's daughter or another girl with a similar birth date.
In 1873 a boy, "young Buckley" is said to have been with Louisa in Adelaide in evidence given to a court on December 15th. It's uncertain who this was as both Louisa's sons to Frank Buckley seem to have died very young. Did she have another son, or was one of the children who died not hers?
In 1881, Louisa Buckley was sentenced to 21 days imprisonment with hard labour for being in a house knnown to be frequented by thieves and prostitutes -(Note 9.)
Georgina Ashley, Annie Fulham, Louisa Buckley, Thomas Cunningham, William Crocker, and Charles Ives were charged on the information of Inspector Sullivan with being the occupiers of a house frequented by thieves and prostitutes. A man named Jeremiah Dasey gave evidence of going to the house and being robbedof £5, a bottle of brandy, and some cigars.Evidence was also-given that defendants were continually loafing about the Phoenix and Shamrock hotels, and never did any work, The information against Crocker was withdrawn, and the other defendants were sent to gaol for twenty-one days with hard labor. 

The Phoenix Hotel was on Hindley St, Adelaide and appears
on the right in this 1851 sketch by S.T. Gill.

In 1886 Louisa Buckley, born in Tasmania, aged "49" with 2 children, "enceinte" (pregnant?) was admitted to the Destitute Asylum in Adelaide. She was recorded as living in Currie St. West, occupation domestic duties.We can presume she died in the Destitute Asylum because she passed away on 4th January 1886, aged 56.

The Destitute Asylum, Kintore Avenue, Adelaide (left)
next to the Mounted Police Barracks in 1868

At the time of her death, Mary Louisa had a mother, elderly but still living, a married daughter aged 38, a son, a man of property, aged 35 and a daughter aged 28 planning her own wedding on Kangaroo Island. Of the men whose children she had borne, Joseph Stone had a successful stevedoring business at Port Adelaide, Tom Clark a farm and a tribe of grandchildren on Kangaroo Island and Francis Buckley was missing, free of family commitments.


  • Birth:
Mary Louisa Connor
DOB 9th November 1830
Father: John Connor, Seaman
Mother: Jane Connor
Place of Birth: Launceston, VDL
Ref: Baptisms solemnized in the Parish of St John, Launceston in the County of Cornwall, in the year 1834. Pg 46, entry #5764
Per Tasmanian Names Index, Record#NAME_INDEXES:1083433
Groom: Joseph STONE, adult, single
Bride: Mary Louisa CONNOR, minor, single
Date: Feb 15, 1847
Place: Holy Trinity Church Adelaide
District: Adelaide
Ref: 2/25
(Data courtesy SA Genealogy and Heraldry Society ALSO: from
STONE / STOW Joseph,
Mary Louisa CONNOR
married 15 Feb 1847 at Holy Trinity Church, Adelaide, aged adult, minor
  • Birth of Mary Ann Stone:
STONE / STOW Joseph,
Mary Louisa CONNOR,
parents of child born 11 May 1848 named Mary Ann at Pt Adelaide
to parents Thomas CLARKE and Louisa STONE at Encounter Bay. Reg. District: Encounter Bay, Book/Page: 16/447 (Courtesy Genealogy and Heraldry Society of South Australia)
  1. Hearing re Marriage of Mary Ann Stone and Ezra Moore: "LAW AND CRIMINAL COURTS." South Australian Register (Adelaide, SA : 1839 - 1900) 30 November 1861: 3. Web. 13 May 2018
  2. Destitute Board:
  3. Birth of son John Buckley: Born: 1868, November 26, Father not named, Mother: Lewisa BUCKLEY @ (fmly) STONE (nee) CONNORS, Birth Place/Residence: Rapid Bay, Ref: District of Yankalilla 71/253 (Courtesy Genealogy and Heraldry Society of South Australia)
  4. Death of son John Buckley: Date: 03 Jan 1869, Age: 7w, at Rapid Bay, Ref: Yankalilla 34/302A (courtesy Genealogy and Heraldry Society of South Australia )
  5. Obituary Robert Clark: Penneshaw - Obituary 12 Nov 1932
  6. "Adoption" of Eliza Jane Mary Louisa's mother Jane Thompson and her husband William Thompson are buried in the Kingscote Cemetery. An inscription on Jane's grave reads: ::THOMPSON, Jane, nee Thomas of North Cape (Genealogist's Note: Jane Connor nee Thomas gave her name at her marriage as Jane Thomas), KI; Died 10 August 1904, aged 87 years, wife of William (1814-1884), who arrived on Kangaroo Island in 1835, and was associated with the early whaling industry, parents of Eliza Jane Sylvia Chapman." (1858-1952) (Genealogist's Note:This is Eliza Jane Clark, daughter of Mary Louisa Stone nee Connor and Tom Clark, so grandaughter of Jane Thompson) ; "Erected by her descendants; Unveiled 27 July 1996" Source: Kangaroo Island Pioneers Association.
  7. Marriage: Frank Laurence BUCKLER, bachelor aged 21 (born c. 1840) married Louisa Conner, spinster aged 24 [she was 31] on 14th January 1861 at the Registry Office, Port Elliot. Bride's father John Conner, Groom's father Samuel Buckler Reg. District: Encounter Bay, Book/Page: 45/369 (Courtesy Genealogy and Heraldry Society of South Australia)
  8. Birth of Frank Buckler/Buckley: Frank BUCKLER was born on 8 April, 1863 to parents Frank Buckler/Buckley and Louisa Cannan/Connor of Encounter Bay Reg, District: Encounter Bay Book/Page: 29/26 (Courtesy Genealogy and Heraldry Society of South Australia)
  9. Birth of Louisa Buckler/Buckley: Louisa BUCKLER was born 19th January, 1861 to parents Frank BUCKLER and Louisa Conner of Encounter Bay Reg. District: Encounter Bay Book/Page: 22/250 (Courtesy Genealogy and Heraldry Society of South Australia)
  10. Admissions to Adelaide Hospital: South Australian State Archives, Doc #GRG 78/49: Admission registers - Adelaide Hospital, later Royal Adelaide Hospital, entries #386, #726, #739, #1577
  11. Admissions to Destitute Asylum: State Records of South Australia: Destitute Asylum Admissions 1870-1906 Vol2/#1.
  12. Death: Louisa BUCKLEY of Adelaide, wife of Francis Buckley, died 4th January 1886 at Adelaide. Age given as 49 years (she was 56) Reg. District: Adelaide Book/Page: 151/400 (Courtesy Genealogy and Heraldry Society of South Australia)
  13. POLICE COURTS. (1873, December 16). South Australian Register (Adelaide, SA : 1839 - 1900), p. 3
  14. Prison Sentence: POLICE COURT—ADELAIDE. (1881, August 15). The Express and Telegraph (Adelaide, SA : 1867 - 1922), p. 2 (SECOND EDITION). Record for the Adelaide Gaol is Vol G, p 231. Can be viewed on microfiche at State Records of South Australia, Cavan Rd, Gepps Cross.
  15. Desertion: BUCKLY Francis, 30 y. Deserted wife Louisa. Warrant issued Normanville. Supposed in QLD. Source: South Australia Police Gazette No 50, 15-12-1869, p 191

Research Notes

Louisa Buckley - died 4 Jan 1886, married, aged 49? husband Francis Buckley. died at Adelaide. SA BDM shows this as Frank BUCKLER
Mary Buckley - no possible candidates
Mary Stone - died Adelaide 12/3/1911, married, b 1839 (too late I think)
Mary Stone - born 1831, died 2/4/1880, widow, died in Norwood, no relative named
Mary Connor - born 1820, died 12/4/1873 in Adelaide, no relative named, marital status not known. (This seems to be M. C. who came on the Thirteen.
  • 6. John Harris Arrived on the Adelaide (Schooner) June 1835 and there is a photograph taken of him in Adelaide in 1841. [ The Mysteries of Karta - Flinders Uni. Archaeology Dept.)
  • 7. Re lead that Mary Louisa Connor came to Adelaide on the Thirteen. No, this was not her. Adelaide Hospital records say this Mary Connor was born in Galway, Ireland. See: Hospital Admissions Register A-E Entries #336 and 1122 and Entry #248 Register of Admissions Destitute Asylum A-C, State Records of South Australia In 1871 a Mary Connor aged 49, resident North Adelaide, who arrived on the ship Thirteen and lived by selling milk applied for admission to the Destitute Asylum. The record said she had 3 children.
  • 8. A child, Francis Buckley, died aged 4 at "Rapid Bay, Second Valley" on 13th Jan 1868 (b. 1864) No relatives named. Ref: Yankalilla, Book/Page: 31/440 (No birth reg found for this child) No connection to Mary Louisa has been established. 
  • 9. The Shamrock Hotel: "
    There was also the notorious Shamrock Hotel (known also as the Colonel Light Hotel and the Heritage Hotel) in Light Square.. This hotel and its theatre where vaudeville shows were frequent, gained a notoriety that often attracted journalists. On 29 October 1877 one such reporter from the  Register reminded readers that it was 
    ‘one of the lowest amongst the low public houses of the city where men and women had sunk
    to the level of brut es’ and without exception seemed to attract the worst types of loafers, prostitutes, and
    other well-known ‘Police Court habitues’. The Shamrock Hotel’s reputation was so poor that each year when the licence came up for renewal, there were always objections by outraged respectable locals to
    it continuing at all. But the police and Licensed Victuallers' Association believed the hotel played an important role in the city and it was allowed to exist. They explained through theLicensed Victuallers' Gazette of 12 March 1881 that We must have these classes of public-houses. The Shamrock Hotel does not aspire to be a select house of call, but a house of its description is an imperative necessity, and acts as a proper channel for the loose people of Light-square to keep to themselves. We do not desire to see the contaminating influence of the Shamrock habitues spread over the face of the city, and therefore, where a house is specially appropriated for the use of such characters, to seek to deprive it of its licence for permitting prostitutes to congregate is utterly absurd."
    The City of Adelaide - A Thematic History, August 2006 McDougall & Vines Conservation and Heritage Consultants 27 Sydenham Road, Norwood, South Australia 5067

Saturday, 8 June 2019

Tom Clark - Off Shore Whaler 2

I now have all the low-down on Thomas Clark, whaler and farmer, of Encounter Bay and Kangaroo Island.

See also on this Blog: Mr &Mrs Clark of Cape Jervis  | Encounter Bay Whaling Station

Thomas (Tom) Clark aka Clarke
 Born about 1810 in England, United Kingdom
Brother of James Clark(?) according to two sources.
Father of Robert Clark and Eliza Jane (Clark) Chapman. Their mother was Mary Louisa Stone nee Connor. She had three other children from different fathers
Tom Clark died at Antechamber Bay, Kangaroo Island.

Thomas Clark, an Englishman (10), was present in the British Colony of South Australia in its early years. A biography of his son Robert Clark says that Tom arrived in Australia in 1835,(6) which was before the establishment of the colony of South Australia, and that he came to South Australia from Tasmania (then Van Diemen's Land) to join the whale fishery at Encounter Bay. Tom Clark's ship of arrival is not mentioned in his Obituary (2). He had a brother named James Clark, also a whaler at Encounter Bay.(1) A Thomas Clark, Whaler, left Launceston on the whaling vessel Thistle for Port Fairy on 20th October 1836. (12)
A Thomas Clark departed Hobart for Adelaide on the Will Watch on 19th March 1844 (4)
He is mentioned in newspapers as a headsman, and then chief headsman at the Encounter Bay whaling fishery from 1844. (3) He distinguished himself for his strength and the number of whales he caught. (1) His appointment as headsman implies some years of prior experience as a mariner and whaler. He was thus employed until at least 1851. Off-shore whaling was seasonal and he may have had other employment elsewhere in the off-season.(3)
In 1850 Tom Clark partnered with Barnett to hunt whales near Rapid Bay, in a spot now known as Fishery Beach. Whaling commenced in May 1850. Tom was manager and lived there with "Mrs Clark" in a slab hut, remains of which have been excavated by archaeologists. They kept ducks, fowls and pigs, probably for their own use and to supplement the diet of the whalers.(13,14,15)
There were twelve whalers, but few whales. Only one was caught in the entire season. (15) Tom had plenty of time to build three rowboats in sheds on site. At the end of the season, the fishery was sold to Bennett's (15) Tom is recorded as having been in Bennett's employ in 1851 (3) ; this could have been at either Rapid Bay or Encounter Bay, though his son Robert is said to have been born at "Port Victor" (Encounter Bay) (6).
The woman posing as "Mrs Clark" was Mrs Mary Louisa Stone (5) Tom and Mary's son Robert Clark was born in 1851.(6). One source says that a second son, William, was born in 1855. (7) In 1858 they had a daughter, Eliza Jane Clark. (8) By 1861 Mary Louisa had left Tom and was married to Frank Buckley. (9)
In 1853 Tom Clark was one of the locals who assisted survivors of the shipwrecked steamer Osmanli at D'Estrees Bay, Kangaroo Island. He offered to take charge of the salvage operation. (10)
Tom spent his later years on Kangaroo Island where his son Robert became a successful farmer and grazier.
He passed away in 1892, aged 82 at Antechamber Bay, Kangaroo Island. (11)

spondent writes from Hog Bay:-"Mr. T.
Clarke died at his son's (Mr. R. Clarke) resi
dence at Antechamber Bay on the 19th, after
a, short illness, aged eighty-two. Thus has
passed away the once celebrated Tom Clarke,
the noted headsman of bygone times, when
whaling was an important industry in the
colony. Tom Clarke was stationed at En
counter Bay for many seasons, and his reported
feats of great strength are well known in that
locality. He had resided on the island for
many years, and was highly respected. A
goodly number of neighbours attended his
funeral to show their respect for him."


  3. CLARK Thomas, headsman (1846 Hagen, 1847 Wilde, 1848, 1849 Barnett, 1851 Bennett) Names in brackets are his employers as a whaler. Source: South Australian Government Gazettes 1844-51
  4. SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1844, March 22). The Courier (Hobart, Tas. : 1840 - 1859), p. 2
  5. What we know of Tom Clark's and Mary Stone's relationship is from a newspaper report of a divorce suit brought by Mrs Stone's husband, Joseph.[ Supreme Court - Stone vs Stone and Clark
  6. 6. Cyclopedia of South Australia 1909, pp.1021-1022
  7. Bibliographical Index of South Australia, May 1986 There's no formal registration of this birth. Not known where the BISA got it from. In 1880, a William Clark, son of Thomas Clark, married Ellen Harris in Adelaide (BDM 124/835) but no certainty of connection.
  8. Mary called herself Louisa Stone: CLARKE Thomas, Louisa STONE, parents of child born 1858-03-08 named Eliza Jane at Encounter Bay (data courtesy Family History S.A.)
  9. Hearing re Marriage of Mary Ann Stone and Ezra Moore: "LAW AND CRIMINAL COURTS." South Australian Register (Adelaide, SA : 1839 - 1900) 30 November 1861: 3. Web. 13 May 2018
  10. Letter from Thomas Clarke to South Australian Free Press, , 4th March 1854
  11. Death Thomas CLARKE died 19 May 1892, aged 82yrs, born approx 1810, at An techamber Bay which was also his residence at time of death. Ref: District: Yankalilla Book/Page: 202/409 per South Australian Genealogy and Heraldry Society.
  12. Tasmanian Names Index - Departures
  13. New Whale Fishery at Cape Jervis
  14. Shipping - Cleared Out 


Thursday, 16 May 2019

Ladies of the Night

I love the way 19th century journalists wrote about the ladies of the night. 


Julia Julian of Hobart-town

 25 Jan 1833 

Julia Julian, appeared with downcast eye, labouring
evidently under great distress of mind, to answer
the charge of Mrs. Mary Thomas, residing on the
Jetty, where she now reigns the Sovereign Queen of
her frail sisterhood. Mrs. Thomas complained that
Julia, whom she had taken into her "discreet and
sober house," had so repeatedly strayed from the path
of virtue, and returned home drunk and outrageous,
that she could no longer keep her under her fostering
care ; and that on communicating her intentions to the
fair one, she flew in a rage and threw a tumbler at her
head ; for which she now prayed restitution and justice.
At the request however of the complainant,
at this stage of the proceeding, the charge was with
drawn, and both ladies withdrew in seeming friend


The Misses Moffatt of Adelaide

Here is an Amelia Moffatt with a number of other Moffats arriving in 1840:

MORGAN David (1st arr 1837 Lady Emma), Christina MOFFATT nee POPLE, Priscilla MOFFATT, Selina MOFFATT, Amelia MOFFATT, dau MOFFATT arrived in SA 1840-06-10 aboard Orleana from London 40-02-29. My goodness! What a lot of Moffatts, and all female! Mr Morgan apparently came to check out Adelaide in 1837, and went back to England to get the girls.

 Thursday, 18th November. (1847, November 20). Adelaide Observer (SA : 1843 - 1904), p. 3
Thursday 18th November,
Mary alias Pol. Pitman, and Sarah Cummings, two illus
trious .members of the ".ladies' society," of Light-square,
charged with annoying Amelia Moffatt and Sarah Lyons, at
the residence of the latter two, in Hindley-street, by the
use of abusive and indecent language, pleaded Not Guilty.
Police-constable Tarrant, who seems to be a thorough
adept in ferreting out the frail sisterhood, gave with admi
rable coolness, a verbatim report of the Billingsgate phraseology that constituted the charge; but as we cannot boast
of so much nerve as the worthy sprig of justice seems to
possess in such illustrations, we must-decline repeating the
many lingual elegancies that transpired,
Sarah Lyons, "dyer" and Amelia Moffat dressmaker,
who live in the same house in -Hindley-street, stated that
they were constantly annoyed by the "fair dames" in
question, who with a posse of Cyprians, besieged their
nunnery with the most unaccountable perseverance, and
from their threats and gestures they were apprehensive of
some injury to their persons or clothes. They could con.
ceive no reason why they should be so annoyed.
This being the charge the.Magistrate asked the prisoners
what they had to say in defence of .their conduct. .
Miss Pittman, in the absence of her standing-counsel, said
she was passing near the residence of the Mesdames Moffattt
and Lyons,when she was saluted with various unladylike
epithets which she of course resented, She looked upon
the complainant, Moffatt, as a prostitute like herself, and
considered the annoyance complained of was perfectly war.
ranted under the circumstances.
. Miss Cummings, with an air of virtuous indignation.said
that Miss Moffatt was in the habit of encroaching .upon the
exclusive rights of herself and companion in tribulation by
wiling away gents of their acquaintance to her lodgings, and
thus limiting their undeniable prerogatives in that aristo
cratic part of the town; and that whilst she (Moffatt) pro,
fessed to be kept by a Mr B**** at the time, in .question a
Mr F*'***, with.whom.she was desirous of communicating
was in the house. On her expressing a wish to that effect
to Lyons, she was threatened with being given in charge of
the Police, that thereupon she expressed her feeling some
what warmly and the result was that she and her friend
were unceremoniously hauled off to the Police station
The Magistrate told them the charge was fullyproved,
add that it could not be allowed that such conduct should
pass unnoticed. Whatever Amelia Moffatt's peculiarities
might be, she was entitled to protection. He should-there.
fore fine each prisoner 10s.
Two kindred sylphs were immediately despatched for the
necessary levy, which they soon produced,and the frail de-
linquents glided out of Court with the grace and haughty
bearing of a keen sense of injury, muttering a firm determi
nation to continue hostilities against the aforesaid nunnery
with energy and means that will probably lead to "glorious
deeds of fame," and bring the fair Joans again before the
admiring gaze of the public.
 So it's seven years after the arrival of the Moffatt sisters. Amelia is now a Hindley St. prostitute. "Miss Moffatt was about twenty one years
of age. She (witness) washed for her. Could not say
what business she followed. She might have been a kept
mistress. She might have been kept by several persons."
In 1850, Miss Amelia Moffatt is in Port Philip, (and who is the "celebrated Newberry/Newbury, now out of the colony"? Sounds like a purveyor of stolen goods. He was. He fled to avoid jail.) A Selina Moffatt, aged 26, married  James Samuel Watson, aged 40 at St James Church Blakiston (District: Adelaide Book/Page: 14/143) She died, still married to Watson, in 1866.

Further Reading

Monday, 6 May 2019

Encounter Bay Whaling Station

Some very scrappy notes. If you have any questions or comments, please leave me a message in the comments box below.

Ramindjerri name for Encounter Bay: Karraunda

Encounter Bay Whaling Station 1850 showing "The Bluff" (Rosetta Head)
at right, Granite and Wright Island, whaleboats drawn up on the beach,
whalebone on the beach and a row of whaler's huts.
Whaling begins 1837.
Two stations: Capt Blenkinsop's at first on the mainland, then on Granite Island.
S.A. Company managed by Samuel Stephens (of all people!) at Rosetta Head.

"To resolve the conflicts Parliament passed an Act for the Regulation and Protection of the Whale Fisheries in September 1839. The whale belonged to the party whose harpoon first struck the whale. If the line broke and a second harpoon was struck, the whale became joint property. The Act also specified the provisions to be supplied to the men - 12 lbs of beef or 9 lbs of pork, 12 lbs of bread or flour, 4 ozs tea and 2 lb of sugar per week. The lack of vegetables was compensated by the owners supplying two gallons of tea or half a pint of strong rum per day. Some reports indicate that the men had little to do between whale chases but "eat, drink and sleep, play cards, sing and make a noise". (FamilyHistorySA Maureen M. Leadbetter)


HEADSMAN - In charge of each boat, takes over steering once the whale is harpooned
BOATSTEERER usually also the harpoonist
TONGUER  Too horrible to think about

According to Mr Sweetman's memories: (Sweetman was there from around 1853)
Bob Cleeve, 
Billy Honeyman, HUNNIMEN / HONEYMAN/Honeymoon William, boatsteerer (1844 Hagen), boatsteerer (1845 Wilde)
Jim Clark
Tom Clark, CLARK Thomas, headsman (1846 Hagen, 1847 Wilde, 1848, 1849 Barnett, 1851 Bennett)
Jack Jones, JONES John, headsman (1844 Hagen, 1845, 1846, 1847 Wilde, 1848 Barnett)
Jack Taylor, TAYLOR Henry, boatsteerer (1844 Wilde), tonguer (1845 Hagen), pulling hand (1849 Barnett), boatsteerer (1850 Barnett)
Jim Long, LONG James, headsman (1844 Hagen, 1846 Wilde, 1847 Hagen, 1848, 1849 Barnett, 1850 Bennett), chief headsman (1845 Hagen, 1851 Bennett)
Alex Ewen, EWEN Alexander, pulling hand (1844, 1845 Hagen), boatsteerer (1847, 1848 Hagen, 1850, 1851 Bennett)
Bill Harris, HARRIS John, boatsteerer (1848, 1849 Barnett, 1850 Bennett)
Jack Gangel, 
Peter Morgan, 
Jack Parsons,   ??PARSONS Frederick, pulling hand (1845 Hagen)
 Jack McCarthy, 
Jim McDonald, 
Dan Budie,
Frank Buckley, 
George Bennett, BENNETT George, boatsteerer (1844 Hagen, 1845 Wilde)
Jack Foster, (real name John Harris)
Rube Earl, 
Tom Smith, SMITH Thomas, pulling hand (1846 Hagen)
Tom Atrill, 
Joshua Paterson (cooper)
Jack Hyde (boat builder) ??HYDE John, pulling hand (1844 Hagen)
Jack Beddow BEDDOW John, pulling hand (1844 Wilde)
Montgomery (steersman) MONTGOMERY William, boatsteerer (1844 Wilde)
Foster (headsman - drowned) 
Henry Lush

(John Barbank/Burbank) rescued after whaling/fishing boat capsized on the reef at Wright's island after 1850
("New Zealand Tom" ) Not sure if these two are whalers

The following are whalers whose names appeared in Government Gazettes 1844-1851. Source:
BENNETT Samuel, pulling hand (1844 Hagen)
BENNETT Thomas, pulling hand (1844 Hagen)
BUCK William, pulling hand (1844 Haynes, 1845 Hagen, 1851 Bennett)
BUDD William, boatsteerer (1845 Wilde)
CARTER John, pulling hand (1845 Hagen)
CLARK John, headsman (1844, 1845, 1846, 1847 Wilde, 1851 Bennett), pulling hand (1849 Barnett), tonguer (1851 Bennett)
CLARK Joseph, pulling hand (1845 Hagen)
CLARKE Isaac, boatsteerer (1844 Hagen)
CLARKE John, cook (1847 Hagen)
FAGAN James, pulling hand (1846 Hagen)
GANDEW Edward, pulling hand (1846 Hagen)

HARRISON George, pulling hand (1846 Hagen)
HARRISON John, headsman (1844 Haynes), cook (1847 Hagen)
HYDE John, pulling hand (1844 Hagen)
HYDE Morris, pulling hand (1848 Hagen)
HYDE Phillip, boatbuilder (1844 Wilde, 1846 Hagen), carpenter (1845, 1847 Hagen)

JONES Edward, pulling hand (1844, 1845, 1847 Hagen, 1848 Barnett, 1850 Bennett), tonguer (1847 Hagen)
JONES Richard, pulling hand (1846 Hagen)
JONES Thomas, pulling hand (1844 Wilde)
JONES William, pulling hand (1850 Barnett)
 MORGAN William, pulling hand (1845 Hagen)
SMITH Charles, pulling hand (1844 Haynes)
SMITH Grieve, headsman (1844 Hagen)
SMITH John, pulling hand (1844, 1845, 1847, 1848 Hagen, 1845 Wilde), boatsteerer (1846 Hagen)
SMITH Joshua, pulling hand (1845 Wilde)
SMITH Nathan, pulling hand & carpenter (1845 Hagen)
SMITH Thomas, pulling hand (1846 Hagen)
SMITH William, pulling hand (1845, 1846 Hagen)
S.A. Company
John Hart & Jacob Hagen
James Wilde & John Howard
J.T. Haynes


James Frederick Bennett, Samuel Elkington Boord, William Johnstone & S R Clarke (1850)
James Frederick Bennett, Samuel Elkington Boord & William Johnstone (1851)


Joseph Barnett (1848-49)
Joseph Barnett & Thomas Clark (1850) at Rapid Bay


John Hart & Jacob Hagen (1844)
Jacob Hagen, John Baker & John Hart (1845-46)
John Baker, Jacob Hagen & John Hart (1847-48)


J T Haynes (1844)


James Wilde & John Howard (1844-45)
James Wilde, John Howard & William Johnstone (1846)
James Wilde & William Johnstone (1847)

The Town

Was surveyed quite early by Light. Title deeds are dated as early as 1837.

Reading list
Colwell Max, 1969. Whaling Around Australia
Cumpston J S, 1974. Kangaroo Island, 1800-1836
Gibb R M, 1969. A History of South Australia
Kostoglou Parry & McCarthy Justin, 1991. Whaling and Sealing Sites in South Australia
Nash Michael, 2003. The Bay Whales. Tasmania's Shore-Based Whaling Industry
Parsons Ronald, 1986. Southern Passages. A Maritime History of South Australia
Sexton R T, 1990. Shipping Arrivals and Departures. South Australia 1627-1850
Flinders University. The Archaeology of Whaling in Southern Australia and New Zealand (web page now unavailable)

Sources (Bob Sweetman)

Whaling vessels:

Sarah Elizabeth - possibly Henty
Isabella  - Hart
Thistle - Griffiths

Sunday, 5 May 2019

Mr and Mrs Clark of Cape Jervis

In 1850 Tom Clark partnered with Barnett to hunt whales at Fishery Beach, just south of Cape Jervis. Whaling commenced in May 1850. Tom was manager and lived there with "Mrs Clark" in a slab hut, remains of which have been excavated by archaeologists. They kept ducks, fowls and pigs, probably for their own use and to supplement the diet of the whalers.
There were twelve whalers, but few whales. Only one was caught in the entire season. Tom had plenty of time to build three rowboats in sheds on site.

At the end of the season, the fishery was sold to Bennett's. Tom is recorded as having been in Bennett's employ in 1851. Was that at Fishery beach? Son Robert was born in 1851 "at Port Victor".

These dates confirm that Mary Louisa was Robert Clark's mother as she was definitely co-habiting with Tom Clark from May 1850, at Rapid Bay.

SAILED Wed May 1st
The cutter Jane and Emma, 20 tons, Shaw,
master, for Rapid Bay and Cape Jervis. Passengers
Mr and Mrs Clark, Mr and Mrs Chandler, and twelve
whalers. Cargo-Sundries lor the fishery.
3rd May 1850: CLEARED OUT.
May 1 -The cutter Jane and Emma, 15 tons, Shaw, for Cape Jervis. With stores for Barnett &
Clark's Fishery.

Mr Barnett's party started on the 1st inst., in the fine
cutter Jane and Emma (which he has bought) for the
fishery at Cape Jervis; and that nothing might be
wanting to give them a good start, he hired the steamer
to tow the vessel out to the lightship ; everything being
in his usual liberal style, gay flags flaunting in the
breeze, and champagne in abundance to enliven the
party of ladies and gentlemen who accompanied him in
the steamer to see the party off. When we say that
the famous headsman, Tom Clark, continues as
manager, we doubt not they will have that success
which Mr Barnett's liberality and enterprise so well
deserve.Adelaide Observer 4 May 1850
(Note it wasn't the party on board the Jane and Emma that was treated to champagne).

Sept. 23 1850.—The cutter, Jane and Emma, 35 tons,
Clark, master, from Cape Jervis.

 THE WHALING SEASON.-The whaling season this
year has not been very successful up to the present
time. Mr Barnett's new fishery at Cape Jervis, have
only caught one humpback, but this is partly owing to
the situation of the fishery, the tide running through
the straits so fast, that it is very difficult to come up to
a fish passing through. Messrs Bennett and Co's,
party, at the old spot, Encounter Bay, have been rather
fortunate, having taken, we believe, nine whales and
two humpbacks. 14 Sep 1850, Adelaide Observer

26th Sept ARRIVED The cutter Jane and Emma, 25 tons, Shaw,
master, from Cape Jervis, with a party of whalers.

No. VIII.-CAPE JERVIS (dated 1st Dec, presumably 1850) 
From Mr. Ransford's a level road runs parallel
with the coast, and for about a mile or two we were
able even to " bowl along " with comfort till we
came in sight of Mr. Barnett's fishery, which, with
its scattered sheds and buildings near the shore, we
saw from a rise which terminated in a slope where
the hut of Mr. Clark, the manager, was placed.
Mrs. Clark received us with much attention and
civility, in a slab hut, the picture of neatness and
order, though the premises were surrounded by
ducks, fowls, pigs, turkeys, four caged parroquets, a
tame magpie, a pet cat, and an infant cockatoo.
Mr. Clark was at Kangaroo Island. ...
...We looked at the oil-boiling coppers and
apparatus, and threading a maze of empty tuns
visited a boat-shed where were three new handsome
strong boats, built by Mr. Clark; the largest, a
.six-oared boat, valued at £25.

We were so fully in view of Kangaroo Island,
and could so plainly see the vegetation there, as to
make it appear singularly near, as it sometimes
does. The distance is 12 miles from the fishery,
and the passage is made in a few hours. Mrs.
Clark said that her husband and herself could
manage the boat without assistance on these occasions,
Mrs. Clark, as she technically phrased it,"hauling the sheet."
The whaling season here had
been unproductive, as we before affirmed, owing
chiefly, Mrs. Clark said, to the men employed not
being " up to their work," but it is also said that
the failure was more attributable to a spirituous
influence. Mrs. Clark had attempted a little garden
north of the house, a little above it, which she said
her husband laughed at, but we told her that it
might prove no joke. She was ambitious of grow
ing melons, which were thriving, and coveted
cucumbers, but had no seed.

... We have since
learnt that this fishery has been sold by Mr. Barnett
to Messrs. Boord, Johnson, and Bennett.
Adelaide Observer 3 May 1851

Friday, May 10th. 1850
Charles Morris, charged with deserting the Cape Jervis
whale fishery, to which he had articled himself for five
months, after receiving £3 wages on the 5th inst., pleaded
guilty, and said be had to cook for all of them at the fishery,
and there was nothing to do it with, so he left, as the men
complained of him. He intended to return the £3.
Mr Barnett explained that the things were not yet landed,
the man knew when he engaged that the fishery was not
established, and they must make a shift for a time.
Committed for a month.
Adelaide Observer 11th May 1850

Sunday, 16 December 2018

Hellwigs of South Australia

Variations: Hellwig, Helwig, Helbig.

Hellwigs were among the early Prussian immigrants to South Australia. They arrived on immigrant ships from Germany.

ARRIVALS 1838-1855
Source: Barry Leadbetter,

  • Zebra from Altona, 1838
    Friedrich HELBIG /HELWIG /HELLWIG (died at sea) family
    Elisabeth Eleonore nee Koch
    Johann Wilhelm, child
  • George Washington from Bremen 1845,
     Georg Carl Christian HELLWIG, aged 26, Miner single

  • Gellert from Bremen 1847,
    ADOLPH (Johann Carl Adolph) HELBIG / HELLWIG  family
    Clara nee Fritsche,
    Maria, child
    Carl, child
  • Hermann von Beckerath 1847,
    Christian Friedrich Valentine HELLWIG / HELWIG age 22  single
  • Ceres  from Bremen, 1849
     J. Carl Christian Gottlieb HELLWIG age 19, ore sorter, single
  • Helene from Hamburg 1855.
    Johanna HELLWIG single


These were found in sources other than ship passenger lists, eg BDMs, newspapers, gazettes.
  1. Carl  born c.1830, who married Anne/a Denecke/Donecke in 1854, arrived before Dec. 1854 and was the father (?) of Carl Wilhelm Eduard who changed his surname to Elvey. This is most likely J.Carl Christian Gottlieb, aged 19, ore sorter, who arrived on the Ceres, departed 1849, arrived 1850. He called himself Carl and is exactly the right age.
  2. Carl who died in the Destitute Asylum in 1872 after being in Hospital. Had one child.
  3. Carl, younger brother of Christian, who was ill a long time then died in 1872
  4. Carl Wilhelm Eduard son of Anne nee Denecke and Carl, born 1855, later changed his surname to Elvey
  5. Christian Friedrich Valentin; arrived 1847, on Hermann vov Beckerath farmer of Lobethal; native of Lautenthal, Hanover [Germany]; age 28 y; in SA 6 y; Memorial 12-8-1853; Oath 11-11-1854; Certificate 23-8-1853; Source(s) GG 12-1-1854, PP 1872, A821, A729 (v2). (Naturalisation record)
  6. Georg Carl Christian; miner of Balhannah; native of Lautenthal near Goslar, Germany; age 30 y; in SA 3 y; Memorial 9-7-1849; Oath 22-8-1849; Certificate 16-7-1849; Source(s) GG 28-12-1848, GG 5-7-1860, PP 1872, A821. (Naturalisation record)
    (Note: 4&5 came from the same district. Moved to area close to each other, both Naturalised. Could they be brothers Christian and Carl of #3?)