Saturday, July 30, 2022

T. Nevin cdv at the "Who Are You" exhibition, NGV and NPG 2022

Photographs by T. J. NEVIN 1860s-70s
WHO ARE YOU Exhibition NGV & NPG 2022
Wesley ENOCH contributor of cdv by T. NEVIN

Photographic works extant in public collections taken by Thomas J. Nevin  (1842-1923) in Tasmania during the 1860s and 1870s are regularly displayed at exhibitions held by Australian national galleries and museums. In many cases, a publication in book form accompanies the exhibition. For example, for their 2015 exhibition of The Photograph and Australia, the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney chose a stereograph taken by Thomas J. of Nevin of his studio in Elizabeth St. Hobart ca. 1868, one of at least a hundred rare stereographs and portraits by Nevin housed at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart.

Stereograph by Thomas J Nevin bottom of page 270
Catalogue for the exhibition The Photograph and Australia, Judith Annear (ed)
Art Gallery of NSW, 21 March - 8 June 2015.
Photo copyright © KLW NFC 2015 ARR

The accompanying publication to the exhibition, The Photograph and Australia, listed the stereograph on page 296 with these details:
Thomas J Nevin
Elizabeth St 1860s
7.3 x 7 cm (each)
8.5 x 17.4 cm (card)
Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart

"Who Are You" 2022
This year's exhibition titled WHO ARE YOU includes a hand-tinted carte-de-visite of a woman yet to be identified, taken by Hobart professional photographer Thomas J. Nevin in the 1860s. The exhibition of 230 works - 79 from the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra, and 160 from the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne - represent photography, painting, sculpture, works on papers and video.

The curatorial rationale of the exhibition:
WHO ARE YOU: Australian Portraiture is the first exhibition to comprehensively bring together the rich portrait holdings of both the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, and the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra. Revealing the artistic synergies and contrasts between the two institutions’ collections, this co-curated exhibition considers portraiture in Australia across time and media....
WHO ARE YOU: Australian Portraiture questions what constitutes a portrait - historically, today and into the future. The connection between the artist, sitter, and viewer is considered throughout the exhibition, creating opportunities for new perspectives to emerge from this relationship. The curators have organised the works into five key themes, each one occupying a separate area of the exhibition space.

Person and Place examines the connection between identity and the land on which we live.
Meet the Artists celebrates self-portraits and portraits that artists have made of fellow artists.
Intimacy and Alienation reflects on love, family, friendship, isolation, mourning and nudity.
Inner Worlds considers how identity can be perceived through psychology, imagination, surrealism and fetish.
Icons honours the sitter portrayed in each portrait, emphasising who is remembered and who has been forgotten.

Screenshots: Virtual Tour of Who Are You: Australian Portraiture
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne from 25 March 22 to 21 August 2022
National Portrait Gallery, Canberra from 1 October 2022 to 29 January 2023

The Book of the Exhibition
The exhibition is accompanied by a publication produced by the NGV and features written reflections by some of Australia’s foremost writers, thinkers, artists and poets. Each author was invited to choose an artwork in the exhibition that resonated with their lived experience. This publication centres portraiture within contemporary conversations around identity, belonging and representation in Australia.
Source: NGV Fact Sheet 1: WHO ARE YOU

Edited by Sophie Gerhard, Joanna Gilmour, Penelope Grist, David Hurlston, Hannah Presley and Beckett Rozentals, with contributors
NGV | National Portrait Gallery | Thames & Hudson

Who Are You: Australian Portraiture,NGV 2022
Introduction, p. xiii

Tony Ellwood AM
Director, National Gallery of Victoria

Karen Quinlan AM
Director, National Portrait Gallery

EXTRACT, Introduction
... With works spanning disciplines and chronologies, WHO ARE YOU challenges conventional assumptions around portraiture. The project celebrates the art form, revealing themes of inner worlds, intimate selves, identity, isolation, politics, celebrity and the social sphere. WHO ARE YOU features more that 200 works by renowned Australian artists, including Patricia Piccinini, Anton Ahem, Nora Heysen, Howard Arkely, Vincent Namatijira and Tracey Moffatt, and sitters including Cate Blanchett, Helena Rubenstein, Eddie Mabo, and Marcia Langton....

Carte-de-visite by T. Nevin

Who Are You: Australian Portraiture, pps 164-165
A selection of photographs by contributor Wesley Enoch.
(left to right) T. Nevin, Hobart No Title (woman wearing a bonnet with a pink bow), carte-de-visite 1865-67 National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
John Bishop-Osborne No title (Child standing on a chair and holding a whip), carte-de-visite 1879-83 National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Burman & Co., Melbourne No title (Man) , carte-de-visite 1876-77 National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
James E. Bray Madame Sibly, Phrenologists and mesmerist ca. 1870 National Portrait Gallery, Canberra

Who Are You: Australian Portraiture p.270
T. Nevin, Hobart Australia 1865-67
No Title (woman wearing a bonnet with a pink bow), carte-de-visite (1865-67)
albumen silver photograph,
9.5 x 5.8 cm (image and support)
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through the NGV Foundation
by John McPhee, Member 2003

Contributor Wesley Enoch

Who Are You: Australian Portraiture p.275
WESLEY ENOCH AM is a writer and director. He hails from Stradbroke Island (Minjerribah) and is a proud Quandamooka man. Enoch was artistic directror of Sydney Festival from 2017 to 2020, and was previously artistic director at IIbijerri Aborginal and Torres Strait Islander Theatre Cooperative and associate artistic director at Belvoir Street Theatre. He was creative consusltant, segment director and indigenous consultant for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. Enoch has written and directed numerous Indigenous theatre productions; his most recent is the Australian premiere of Appropriate by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins at the Sydney Theatre Company.

Who Are You: Australian Portraiture p.161

Contributor to the exhibition and publication, Wesley Enoch prefaced his choice of items from the NGV and NPG collections with this statement in which he raises the question significant to memorialising the deceased. The carte-de-visite by T. Nevin was one of a dozen included in his selection.

EXTRACT: Wesley Enoch's Preface, p. 161
Portrtaits are an act of love and care, of memory and storytelling, of finding a physical form to display the invisible and, most of all, a demonstration of belonging ...
... A long-ago tradition dictates that the death of a family member heralds the cessation of speaking their name and the burning or abandonment of their few treasured belongings. This tradition has slowly evolved into new cultural practices that respond to technological advances like photography (though we are slower to respond to video and social media - what do we do with Facebook pages of the deceased? The birthday reminders? Their online collection of pics, vids and comments?) ....

T. Nevin's cdv of Woman with Pink Bow
Apposite, perhaps, that the question posed by the exhibition's title "Who Are You?" applies to this unidentified woman who wore a houndstooth check dress and floral bonnet with large ribbons when she was photographed in the Hobart studio of Thomas J. Nevin. The drape, table, chair, carpet and pose featured in this cdv are identical to the decor and pose in a cdv of a younger woman he photographed around the same time, held at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart. This item, however, unlike the cdv of the younger woman, was delicately hand-tinted. The original presenter of this cdv to the NGV in 2003, John McPhee, who curated the exhibition of Nevin's 1870s photographs of Tasmanian prisoners (mugshots of "convicts") at the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston in 1977, has dated this portrait to the mid 1860s.

National Gallery of Victoria Catalogue Notes
No title (woman wearing a bonnet with a pink bow), carte-de-visite
T. NEVIN, Hobart (1865-1867)
Medium albumen silver photograph, watercolour
Measurements 9.5 × 5.8 cm (image and support)
Place/s of Execution Hobart, Tasmania
Inscription printed in ink on support on reverse c. AD ALTIORA / CITY PHOTOGRAPHIC ESTABLISHMENT / T. NEVIN. / LATE / A. BOCK. / 140 ELIZABETH ST / HOBART TOWN. / Further copies / can be obtained at / any time.
Accession Number 2003.395
Department Australian Photography Credit Line National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through the NGV Foundation by John McPhee, Member, 2003

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Monday, July 11, 2022

Indigenous elder Truganini and poet Ann Kearney, 1875

For NAIDOC WEEK July 2022

Genocide and the European aesthetic
In was only two decades ago that the Archives Office of Tasmania displayed online scratchy black and white photographs of Tasmanian Aborigines with the catalogue tag "Flora and Fauna" in the same category as the extinct thylacine (Thylacinus cynocephalus), known as the "Tasmanian Tiger".

The confections of the 19th century colonists of lutruwita/Van Diemen's Land/Tasmania displayed in public archives and museums of photographic images, sculptures and literary texts that represent Aboriginal people continue causing distress to viewers, whether proferred by these institutions as the antique artefact memorializing the reality of historic genocide, or as benchmarks in a progressive national narrative moving forward the Western reformation of indigenous peoples. The most frequently reproduced images since the 1860s have featured Tasmanian Aboriginal elder and leader Truganini, a Nuenonne woman from Bruny Island also known as Trucaninni, Lallah Rookh and Trugernanner (1812-1876).

This plaster bust representing Truganani was cast in 1836 by Benjamin Law. It was purchased at the time by Jewish merchant and former convict Judah Solomon. Law's sculptural aesthetic was simple: dressing down Truganini's right breast to reveal a naked nipple was only to dress up her femininity better in the neo-Classical tradition of beauty, the European ideal.

Cast plaster bust of "Trucaninny" [NPG, sic] 1836 by Benjamin Law (1807-1890)
Purchased by the National Portrait Gallery, 2010.
Photo taken at the National Portrait Gallery 2021
Copyright © KLW NFC Imprint & KLW NFC Group Private Collection 2021

Information re bust of Truganini by Benjamin Law, National Portrait Gallery, Canberra 2021.
Photo copyright © KLW NFC Imprint & KLW NFC Group Private Collection 2021.

Cast plaster bust of Woureddy, companion to bust of Truganini by Benjamin Law, 1835
Photo taken at the National Portrait Gallery July 2022
Copyright © KLW NFC Imprint & KLW NFC Group Private Collection 2022

The poem below titled simply "Lines", written by Ann Elizabeth Kearney in June 1875, is another representation of Truganini confronting to 21st century sensitivities, though the author might not have had the least inkling of the degree of racism she was parlaying with her celebration of the fair skin and rosy lips of 10 year old non-indigenous Trucannini Graves - the "TASMANIAN BELLE" - over and against the "dusky" darkness of the race believed soon to become extinct, represented by Truganini whose name John and Jessie Graves had appropriated for their daughter at birth in 1864.

The Kearney and Graves families
John Woodcock Graves the elder (1795-1886), famous for his composition of the song "D'ye ken John Peel", was a family friend and frequent visitor of Thomas Kearney's father, William Keaney (1795–1870) of Laburnam Park, Richmond, Tasmania. His son, lawyer and townsman John Woodcock Graves the younger (1829-1876), defended Thomas Kearney (1824-1889) in a dispute in 1875 over the conveyancing of a lease five years earlier, in 1870, to neighbour William Searle for use of a road on his property. The defense was Kearney's state of intoxication and severe delirium tremens prevented him from knowing what he was doing. Thomas Kearney's wife, Ann Elizabeth Keaney nee Lovell, showed her gratitude to John Woodcock Graves for his defense of the case in June 1875 by writing a poem praising his pretty youngest daughter Trucaninni Graves.

Though not indigenous, two of the four daughters born to solicitor John Woodcock Graves the younger and Jessie Graves nee Montgomerie were named after the two notable Tasmanian Aboriginal women who survived the colony's history of genocide, Truganini (1812-1876) and Mathinna (1835–1852). When Anne Elizabeth Kearney published this poem titled "Lines" in June 1875, Trucaninni Graves was ten years old, named at birth (with the variant spelling) to honour Truganini who was thought to be "the last one of a doomed race" by many, if not most, including Ann Elizabeth Kearney in this poem. The role John Woodcock Graves the younger played in Truganini's life was to provide comfort or "succour" in her last years, the poem suggests, and a promise of protection of her remains in death. She died aged 73 yrs, on 8th May 1876. He died six months later, aged 47 yrs, on 30th October 1876. The poem as displayed here from a private collection, was printed on silk.
Lines written on seeing the beautiful daughter of Mr. Graves, who is named after the last Tasmanian Native, and afterwards meeting Queen Trucaninni at the corner of Elizabeth and Macquarie Streets by Kearney, Anne Elizabeth, author.
Date 1875.


Written on seeing the Beautiful Daughter of MR.
GRAVES, who is named after the last Tasmanian
Native, and afterwards meeting Queen Trucaninni
at the corner of Elizabeth and Macquarie Streets.

I SAW thy dusky namesake, gentle child,
And still more fair by contrast did'st thou seem,
With rosy lips that on me sweetly smiled,
And eyes more lovely than a poet's dream.

I gazed upon poor Trucaninni's face,
And thought how sad her heart at times must be,
To think she was the last of all her race
Who once had wandered through the forests free.

I looked upon her, and I wondered not
That Trucaninni now is known to fame -
The last Tasmanian may not be forgot
While thou, fair girl, inheritest her name.

Thy noble Father, with a generous hand,
Succoured the last one of a doomed race -
Made her be happy in her native land,
And reign a Queen, if only for a space.

In after years, when I have passed away,
And other lips than mine the tale may tell;
Thou shalt be known in every poet's lay,

June 19th, 1875.

Published in the Jeanneret family files (p.75)

[Above]: Truganini (1812-1876) and John Woodcock Graves jnr (1829-1876)
Tasmanian Archives and Heritage Office.
Photo copyright © KLW NFC Imprint 2015 ARR

Above: An unattributed photograph of Tasmanian Aboriginal woman Truganini seated, with John Woodcock Graves the younger standing over her, taken shortly before her death, aged 73 yrs, on 8th May 1876. He died six months later, aged 47 yrs, on 30th October 1876 of congestion of the lungs and pneumonia.

Ann Elizabeth Kearney née Lovell (1827-1898)
When Ann Elizabeth Lovell married Thomas Kearney on 30th March 1848 according to the rites and ceremonies of the Wesleyan Church at the private house of her father, Esh Lovell of Carrington, Richmond (Tasmania), she was 20 years old. Her sister Margaret Rachel Lovell, 18 years old, married William Kearney the younger, Thomas Kearney's brother, on the same day.

Ann Elizabeth's husband Thomas Kearney (1824-1889) was a farmer, 24 years old, living on his grant of 32 acres at Richmond (Tasmania) at the time of their marriage. Thomas Kearney's father, William Kearney, ran a horse stud at Laburnam Park, Richmond until his death in 1870. The 1851 census registered nine people at Thomas Kearney's property, identified as Colebrook, Lower Jerusalem in the district of Richmond. Two daughters, Catherine who died at 10 days from convulsions in 1850, and Clara who died of "atrophy" (genetic disease causing spinal muscular weakness and wasting) also at 10 days in 1851 were born before their son William Kearney (named after his father's father) was born on 29th March 1852 . Their births were all registered by their father, Thos. Kearney, whose addresses varied from "Colebrook", Coal River, to "Colebrook Dale", Lower Jerusalem in the district of Richmond. The birth of William was countersigned by medical registrar Dr John Coverdale whose own wife Ann Harbroe had given birth at Richmond three days earlier to a son, William Percy Coverdale. More births followed, registered by their mother at various addresses either on the same property or in the same district: "Spring Hill Bottom", Coal River, and Enfield where her death was registered in 1898. In all, eleven births were registered to Ann Elizabeth Kearney between 1849 and 1866. For details, see Resources below and visit this wiki:

The circumstance of these addresses given by Thomas Kearney of his property at Richmond assumed critical importance in 1870 when he was approached by William Searle from a neighbouring property to sign a lease over an area of land which was later disputed as to whether it was a public or private road. The case brought by the plaintiff, Searle's trustees, before a jury five years later, in 1875 called on the defendant's wife Ann Elizabeth Kearney as a witness, who identified herself straight up as a poetess. Under cross-examination by the Attorney-General for the plaintiff, she told how she now regretted having written lines in thanks to Mr Searle when he had paid her husband Thomas for the lease in 1870 at a time he was heavily in debt and desperately ill from alcoholism because she thought Searle had saved her husband from committing suicide, but by 1875, she thought Searle's singular objective was to get hold of the Kearney's property by fraudulent means.

The Case, 17th June 1875
The plaintiffs are the trustees of the late William Searle, of Richmond, and they claimed to recover from the defendant the sum of £100 damages for the wrongful obstruction of a certain high road and right-of-way on the Laburnum Park estate at Richmond.

1974. Animals - Horses - Neptune Stud, Colebrook, Tasmania.
Copyright © National Archives of Australia 2022

The Case 1875
LAW INTELLIGENCE.The Mercury (Hobart, Tas) 17 June 1875: page 2.
Before His Honor Mr Justice Dobson, and juries of seven.

The hearing of this case was resumed.

The plaintiffs are the trustees of the late William Searle, of Richmond, and they claimed to recover from the defendant the sum of £100 damages for the wrongful obstruction of a certain high road and right-of-way on the Laburnum Park estate at Richmond. Defendant pleaded six pleas. (1.) That the plaintiffs were not possessed of the messuage or land as alleged. (2.) That they were not entitled to the said right-of-way. (3.) That plaintiffs claim to the said alleged right-of-way was made by virtue of a deed of agreement in writing made with William Searle, which agreement he (defendant) was induced to make by fraud, and had repudiated and abandoned. (4. ) That he was so intoxicated when he made the agreement as to be incapable of executing it. (5.) That the road was a public highway. (6. ) A general plea of not guilty. On these pleas issue was joined.

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL, instructed by Mr C. Butler, appeared for plaintiff ; and Mr BROMBY, instructed by Messrs Graves and Crisp, for the defendant.

Frederick James Windsor deposed : I am the chief draftsman in the Lands and Works department, and have the charge of charts and plans. I produce the original volume of diagrams of surveys in 1848, from which the grants were made. That contains the diagram of 32A acres of land granted to Thomas Kearney. It shows that the land was intersected by the main road from Richmond to Jerusalem, and it also shows the road from the main road to the road claimed. The road was surveyed by Mr Shaw, then contract surveyor, and now in New Zealand.

To Mr BROMBY : That plan merely shows the survey of the land in 1848. Of my own knowledge, of course, I know nothing about it.

Charles Searle deposed : I am the second son of the late William Searle, and the present tenant of Laburnum Park, under the trustees of my father's will. The plan produced represents the three roads near Laburnum Park. The road " B " is the road in general use by the public. Road " C " is a private road which leads from the main road to Laburnum Park. We have used that private road a little more than ten years. For some years before the lease was made, the road was in actual use. At the point where that private road joins the main road, my father had a large painted gate put up, upwards of ten years ago. That was the road always used by my father and family going to Richmond ; it was the carriage-way to the house. At the other end of the road, a ford was made at considerable expense. Kearney, frequently, before the lease in 1870, used the private road, and therefore knew of it and the gate and ford. We used the road up to July, 1874. Kearney asked me to use the old public road marked "A," saying at the same time that we had a right-of-way through the sixty acres called "The Park." I told him I would consult with my mother, and did so, after which I told Kearney that I would agree to his proposal. The old public road had been practically unused for years, it had a post-and-rail fence on one side and a hedge on the other. The private road was, however, a little nearer Richmond, and we seldom, if ever, therefore, used the old public road. Kearney's proposal to me was this - I met him in March, 1874, and he asked me whether mother would mind using the old public road, as he wanted to cultivate the sixty acre paddock. I said I did not think she would mind using it if he would make it good, and he then said that we had a right of way through the paddock. Between March and July, however, Kearney did not make the road good. In July I spoke to the defendant about the road. I asked him why his sons had ploughed it up, and he said that as soon as they had time they would make the old public road good. After that the gate was locked at the Jerusalem end. At the latter end of July, Kearney told me that he had had a fence put up across both the private and the old public roads. I formally told him that I should require him to open the road. He said he would not do so. The next morning I went to him and asked him for the key, and he said he would not give it. I then told one of my men to draw the fastening of the gate, and with that Kearney threatened to knock either of us off our horses if we threatened to touch the gate. That was the gate on the private road "C". We have never used the road since. The gate had been locked some months before, Kearney telling me it was to prevent other people going through. Kearney's house is just opposite the gate ; the key was kept there, and for some months the gate was always unlocked when we wanted to pass through. The fence across both roads " A" and " C" is still there and they are both ploughed up. We have now to come to Richmond by the road "B," and to cross by a different ford. The difference is half-a-mile. Besides the distance, the ford affects the value of the Laburnum Park property. The ford at the junction of reads "A" and "C" is a much better one ; it is the one made by my father, and is not so steep as the one on road "B." The closing of the road would make a difference in the value of the property of £10 a year. On the white gate, at the end of road " C," there was written " Private entrance to Laburnum Park."

To Mr BROMBY : I have been in possession of Laburnum Park for two years. I am 23 years of age. My father had the painting put on the gate more than ten years ago.

To His HONOUR : My mother has the house and garden, and I have the rest of the estate. I pay her £150 a year for it, under a verbal agreement.

Alexander Goldie deposed : I reside in Victoria, and was formerly the owner of Laburnum Park. I have known the old public road "A" since 1826. "B" was the public road from 1826 to 1846. Kearney is a very old resident. His father was one of a committee with me in 1833 to fix the roads in the neighbourhood: I made the road " B " in order to avoid the inconvenience of people passing just past my house along road "A," and I also made a good bridge. The road " B " was then used by the public, who ceased to use road " A," but I continued to use it. Neither the defendant nor anybody else ever interrupted me using that road. The Enfield people always used that road during the time I was there. It was a decided loss to the estate to have the road closed, a loss, I should say, of quite £10 a year. I knew the late Mr William Searle well ; he was as thoroughly honest as any man that ever lived.

John Gitters deposed :-I was last year in the employ of Mr Chas. Searle, of Laburnum Park. In August last I went, with Mr Searle to the gate at the entrance of the private road. Kearney was there. Mr Searle asked him for the key of the gate, but he refused to give it, and he took a panel out of the fence, and threatened to knock us both down if we attempted to go through.

Winston Churchill Simmons : I am a farmer at Richmond, and one of the plaintiffs in this action. I am well acquainted with the three roads "A," "B," "C." I consider the road "A," the old public road, to be of permanent advantage to Laburnum Park property, and I don't think the previous witnesses have over-estimated the loss to the estate by the closing of the road. The private road, " C," was a better road than "A"; it is more direct, and not so steep. Mrs Searle's lease has about two years to run, the unexpired term of a seven years lease.

That was the case for the plaintiffs.

Mr Bromby submitted that the plaintiffs should be non-suited on two grounds- (1) that they were reversioners of the property, and not in possession according to the first count of the declaration, and that therefore they could not bring the action ; (2) that the old public highway had not been a public highway, for more than 20 years.

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL contended that the reversioners, and not the persons who had transitory possession of the property, were the proper persons to sue ; and with regard to the second point, if a public way was once established, no amount of non-use by the public could extinguish that way. The learned counsel applied to be allowed to amend the declaration on the first count.

His HONOUR overruled both objections, and permitted the declaration to be amended.

Mr BROMBY addressed the jury for the defendant, resting his defence mainly on the allegation that the defendant was in a state of intoxication, and therefore did not know what he was doing when he signed the agreement in question. He called Thomas Kearney, who deposed : I am the defendant in this case, I remember the month of August, 1870, when I was asked to sign a lease by Mr Searle. Bills came in from Richmond, and I went to Mr Searle and asked him to advance me some money to pay them. He had previously advanced money on my wife's property, at eight per cent, and he said he would advance money on my property at the same rate. Just before the lease was signed Mr Searle asked me if I would allow him a right of road through the land. I said " no," but I told him he could use the road he was then using until I wanted to cultivate the land. I got the money from him on the 3rd of August. I had been drinking for some days before that, and when I got up that morning I told my wife that I would turn over a new leaf and not drink any more. I felt delirium tremens, however, coming on me, and I went to Richmond to get some more drink. When I got back at three o'clock, my wife told me that Mr Searle wanted me to go over to his house. I went there, I have an indistinct recollection of signing a lease then. I don't remember how many times I signed my name. Some cheques were given to me. I was anxious to get the money to pay the bills I owed, and the cheques were made out in the names of the various parties, and one also in my wife's name. The sixty acres are nearly all cultivated now. If there was a road through that land, it would greatly diminish its value, I was born on the property, 51 years ago. I remember the public road " B" being made by Mr Goldie. My father made the old public road " A " through my property ; but after Mr Goldie made his road " B," the public used it. The public used the other road, but only on sufferance. Mr Searle asked me to sell him the sixty acre piece ; he offered me £450, but I refused it.

To the ATTORNEY-GENERAL : The sixty acre paddock had not been in cultivation till last year. I never promised to make good the old public road, nor did I first make a proposal to young Searle about the road. He first came to me. I have now ploughed up both roads. I knew long before 1870 that Mr Searle was using the private road " C," and I knew it was a great convenience to him. I have been of intemperate habits for 35 years; I began young. Mr Searle on many occasions tried to induce me to give up drinking. In 1865, he got me to sign the pledge, and had been very kind to me in a variety of ways ; in fact he was so all the time I knew him, except on this one occasion. I think he cheated me then, because I was not in a fit state to sign an agreement. There are three signatures, and they are written in a firm hand. Mrs Searle and Sarah Roberts are mistaken in saying I was sober when I signed the lease. I went to Mr Searle's for the express purpose of signing the lease and obtaining money. I don't remember whether the lease was read to me or not. When my wife told me what I had done in signing the lease, I thought I had been tricked ; but I said nothing about it, nor should I have said anything, had not this action been brought.

John Woodcock Graves deposed : I am the attorney to the defendant. I have known the defendant a long time, and knew his father before him. During the time I have known the defendant, he has been frequently intoxicated. His property was being damaged by his intemperate habits, and I drew up a settlement of some property on Mrs Kearney. By that document I made Mr Searle the trustee. At that time Mr Searle had not made a claim of the right-of-way.

Ann Elizabeth Kearney, examined by Mr BROMBY : I am the wife of defendant, and have been married to him 27 years. I have lived a great many years in Richmond. My husband was given to intemperate habits, very much so five years ago. In 1870, in the month of July, my husband was suffering from delirium tremens, and continued drinking to the 2nd of August. On that day Mr Searle asked me where he was, that he had the lease ready for him to sign. I told him I was afraid he was not in a fit state to sign it. On the 3rd of August he was ill in bed, and begged of me for God's sake to get up and give him a drink. He went out while I was getting his breakfast ready, and did not return home till the afternoon. Mr Searle came to the house after, and I had a conversation with him about the lease of the land. I arranged with him about the rent to be paid for the 60 acres, and how it was to be paid in advance. Mr Searle spoke to me about the condition of my husband, saying that he was on the verge of insanity, and that if something was not done at once he would surely go mad. When my husband came home in the afternoon with the cheques he was very much agitated, and when I hesitated to sign the cheque drawn in my favour, he become so excited that I thought he would have murdered me. After Mr Searle died I saw Mrs Searle in reference to the document containing the right-of-way, and subsequently saw it at the office of Mr C. Butler. I remember the disturbance in reference to the fences of the public road being destroyed, but I have never seen that road used by the public since.

Cross-examined by the ATTORNEY-GENERAL : I fix upon the period the 3rd August from the violence of my husband, which was unusual, and from the date of the cheques which he brought, home, the reason the cheque I have spoken of was made payable to me was that he should not have the money, and he became violent because I refused to sign it, and he wanted to have it cashed. When he went to sign the lease he did so with the one idea of getting the cheques to pay his debts, and he did pay them. I cannot tell if the public road was used by the Enfield people for taking cattle to water. Mr Searle at one time I thought was very kind to us ; but I think differently now. I am a poetess. I wrote the lines produced in thanks to Mr Searle because he had saved my husband from committing suicide. I think now the object Mr Searle had was to get hold of our property.

Annie Kearney, daughter of defendant, gave evidence corroborative of the last witness as to the condition of her father on the 3rd of August.

Cross-examined : He was very tipsy before he went to Mr Searle. He had been drinking for three or four days before then. It was his custom, when he went to Richmond to return home drunk. I fix the date the 3rd of August, from the way in which he behaved to my mother on that date. The first I knew of the deed about the road was when my mother came from Mr Butler's, and said that Mr Butler had produced the paper, but that it was illegal. I cannot tell if she said that the paper was signed on the 3rd of August, 1870.

Ada Kearney, another daughter of the defendant, also testified that her father was tipsy on the 3rd of August, 1870. She fixed upon the date from the violent behaviour of her father towards her mother.

Alexander Gibbons, storekeeper, examined by Mr BROMBY : I have known defendant for 35 years. I have lived in the neighbourhood of Richmond a great length of time. I remember in August, 1870, meeting Kearney in the paddock coming from Mr Searle. He said he had been signing articles at Mr Searle's, and seeing that he was under the influence of drink, I made the observation, " I hope you knew what you were signing." Defendant had a piece of paper in his hand. I had frequently seen defendant tipsy before.

Cross-examined : It was Kearney who remembered our meeting in the first instance I remembered it afterwards.

S.B. Fookes, rector of Richmond, examined by Mr BROMBY, deposed to knowing defendant for many years as a very intemperate man. He did not know of the road in dispute ever having been used as a public road.

John Stonehouse, examined by Mr BROMBY, deposed that he knew Kearney's property. Knew it for 42 years. The road used to go to the Falls from the public road leading from Richmond to Jerusalem was abandoned in 1840, and the road called the public road, and now known as such, was adopted.

Richard Cook corroborated the last witness.

This concluded the case for the defendant, and Mr BROMBY summed up the same, contending that the evidence established beyond a doubt that the defendant when he made the agreement conveying the road to the late Mr Searle, was not in a fit state to execute such a document, and that therefore it was null and void, and ought to be so declared. As to the question that the road was a public road, he submitted that there was no evidence of that, and, further that if it was a public road it had been abandoned.

His HONOR : Do you contend, Mr Bromby, that a public road can be abandoned ?
Mr BROMBY ; Yes.
His HONOR : Have you any authority ?
Mr BROMBY : I have but I have not the books with me.

His HONOR said that the authorities laid down that a public road, even though it might have been fenced across, could not be abandoned, excepting by Act of Parliament. The principle was that " Once a highway, always a highway."

Mr BROMBY, (after some discussion) said he would confine his contention to the allegation that the road never was a public road.

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL replied on the whole case pointing out that the non-use of a public road did not amount to a cession of it as such, and in support of his view quoted Shelford on Real Property. He then proceeded at length to deal with the allegation contained in the defendant's plea that he was so drunk at the time he made the agreement as to be incapable of executing it, submitting that it was monstrous to suppose that a man having entered into a legal contract should be allowed to turn round and say - when the person with whom that contract was, laid in his grave, and was unable to confront him-that he was induced to enter into the agreement while under the influence of drink. It must be shown that he was so far drunk as to be wholly incapable of comprehending the meaning of the contract, and that Mr Searle must have known that he was in that state. He submitted that the evidence for the plaintiffs was entitled to belief, and if so, then the jury must find their verdict in their favour.

His HONOUR then summed up the whole case to the jury, telling them that if the defendant was so drunk when he signed the deed as not to know what he was doing and that Searle knew he was so drunk, there could be no doubt whatever that the deed would not hold water. He then reviewed the evidence on either side on that point, and left the case in the hands of the jury ; directing them if they found the road was a highway still it could not be abandoned by non-user, and plaintiff would be entitled to compensation for any damages they had sustained from the obstruction of that highway.

Mr BROMBY asked His Honour, to direct the jury in finding on the plea of drunkenness, to say whether the defendant when he executed the deed was drunk only, or whether he was drunk to the knowledge of Mr Searle.

HIS HONOUR assented, and desired the jury to decide on the plea as suggested by the learned counsel.

The jury retired at 5 p.m., and at 6 o'clock they came into Court with a question on which they desired His Honour's ruling. The question was whether, if the defendant was drunk, but not drunk within the knowledge of Searle, that would invalidate the deed.

His HONOUR replied that it would. That was how he had directed the jury in his summing up, and he had been fortified in his opinion by other authorities than that mentioned in the case, since the jury had retired. If the jury found simply that defendant was drunk, but that he was not drunk within the knowledge of Searle, then the bargain would stand good so far as Searle was concerned.

The jury again retired, and after twenty minutes deliberation, they sent to ask for information as to what damages would carry costs.

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL offered no objection, and the reply was forwarded that anything above £7 would carry costs.

Shortly after, the jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff on the first count, with 40s. damages. On the second count they found that defendant was drunk when he signed the deed, but not to the knowledge of Mr and Mrs Searle; and on the third count that the road marked "A" was a public highway, but that it had ceased to be used ai a highway since 1863.

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL asked what damage was assessed on the second count. The jury were bound to state some damages.

The Foreman : One shilling.

Mr BROMBY asked His Honour to take a note of his objection as to whether drunkenness with or without the knowledge of either was a good defence or not. If he could maintain that it was, then he should submit, on the finding of the jury on that count, that plaintiffs were not entitled to a verdict.

His HONOUR said he would do so.

The Court then adjourned until 10 o'clock next (this) morning.
Source: LAW INTELLIGENCE. The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954) 17 June 1875:page 2.
Before their Honors the Judges. SIMMONS AND OTHERS V. KEARNEY.
A rule nisi had been granted last week for arrest of judgment and nonsuit in this case, the right to a road being in question. The rule was enlarged for a week, and the Court strongly recommended that the parties should come to terms.
Source: SUPREME COURT—TERM SITTINGS. (1875, July 1). Launceston Examiner (Tas. : 1842 - 1899), p. 3.

The final decision in this case was published on 10th July 1875. Thomas Kearney as the defendant was fined 40 shillings for obstructing the road which he had signed over to the plaintiff Searle in 1870, but since the jury believed that Searle claimed that Kearney to his knowledge was not intoxicated at the signing of the deed, the accusation that Searle had acted fraudulently was dismissed.
Simmons and Others v. Kearney was a suit in which the plaintiffs sought to recover damages, assessed at £100, for the obstruction by the defendant of a certain private road and public highway in the Richmond district. The defendant pleaded several pleas, but that on which the greatest reliance was placed was that wherein he alleged that the deed of agreement, by which he had parted with his right to the plaintiff to use the private road, he being to the knowledge of the late Mr. Searle (whose trustees the plaintiffs are), intoxicated at the time it was executed, and therefore, unable to comprehend its meaning. The jury found a verdict for the plaintiffs on the first count alleging the obstruction, and awarded them 40s. costs. On the defendant's plea of drunkenness, they found that he was drunk when he executed the deed, but not to the knowledge of Mr. Searle ; and as to the obstruction of the highway, they stated that the highway was a public road, but that it ceased to be used as such in 1873. The verdict substantially is therefore for the plaintiff.
Source: LEGAL. Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), Saturday 10 July 1875, page 1
Photograph - Colebrook Mansion
Item Number:LPIC13/1/60
Start Date:01 Jan 1880 End Date: 31 Jan 1880
Location:Launceston 34 1 4
Creating Agency: Anson Brothers, Photographers (NG143)
Archives Office Tasmania

The four Graves sisters
It was during these court proceedings in June 1875, in which her husband Thomas Kearney was defended by solicitor John Woodcock Graves' instructions (to Mr. Bromby) that Ann Elizabeth Kearney wrote her poem about meeting Aboriginal elder Truganini (1812-1876)) on a street corner, prompting her to celebrate her namesake, the non-Aboriginal daughter of solicitor John Woodcock Graves, Trucannini Graves. The first-born of these four sisters, Jean Porthouse Graves, was photographed by Thomas J. Nevin in 1872:

Jean Porthouse Graves, 14 yrs old,
Detail of photograph (below) printed as both a stereograph and carte-de-visite
Stereograph in double oval buff mount with T. Nevin blindstamp impress in centre
Photo copyright © KLW NFC 2014 ARR
Taken at the TMAG November 2014 (TMAG Collection Ref:Q1994.56.5)

Jean Porthouse Graves, born 20th January 1858 at Hobart to John Woodcock Graves, solicitor, Upper Bathurst St Hobart, and Jessie Graves formerly Montgomerie. She was unnamed at birth. Jean Porthouse Graves married solicitor Francis Knowles Miller at Melbourne, Victoria in 1885. She died at her residence, Rembrandt Square London, aged 91 yrs, on 30th July 1951.

Mathinna Isabella Graves, born 1st August 1859 at Hobart to John Woodcock Graves, solicitor, Bathurst St Hobart, and Jessie Graves formerly Montgomerie. Mathinna Isabella Graves died at her residence, Orrong Rd, St Kilda Victoria, aged 88 yrs, on 29th June 1948.

Mimi Graves was born on 20th November 1862 at Hobart to John Woodcock Graves, solicitor and Jessie Graves formerly Montgomerie. Her birth was registered by a friend - H J D Baily (?) Argyle St.

Trucaninni Graves was born on 2nd November 1864 at Hobart to John Woodcock Graves, solicitor, Bathurst St Hobart, and Jessie Graves formerly Montgomerie. Her birth was registered by her mother Jessie Graves, Princess St. Hobart.

The eldest, Jean Porthouse Graves (1858-1951) was an admirer in her teens of photographer Thomas J. Nevin. She made his acquaintance in January 1872 when he was assigned official photographer of VIP's on a day trip to Adventure Bay, Tasmania, a trip organised by her father John Woodcock Graves the younger. In her album of photographs and newspaper clippings, some documenting the history of her grandfather's fame as the composer of the English folk song "D'ye ken John Peel", John Woodcock Graves the elder, she kept a half dozen photos by Thomas J. Nevin of that trip in 1872, plus a few taken later of all four daughters at the family home, Caldew, in West Hobart, after her father's death in 1876.

One of four extant photographs taken on 31st January 1872 and printed in various formats from Thomas J. Nevin's series advertised in the Mercury, 2nd February, 1872, as the Colonists' Trip to Adventure Bay (Bruny Island).
[From lower left]: John Woodcock Graves jnr, solicitor; his daughter Jean Porthouse Graves; above her, R. Byron Miller, barrister; on her left, Sir John O'Shanassy, former Premier of Victoria;
[Centre top]: Lukin Boyes, son of auditor and artist G. T. W. Boyes, leaning on stone structure
[Extreme lower right]: James Erskine Calder, former Surveyor-General, Tasmania

Single unmounted carte-de-visite photograph of large group at Advenure Bay 1872
From the Miller and Graves family album
Photos recto and verso: copyright © KLW NFC Imprint 2015 Private Collection

Verso of above: One of four extant photographs taken on 31st January 1872 and printed in various formats from Thomas J. Nevin's series advertised in the Mercury, 2nd February, 1872, as the Colonists' Trip to Adventure Bay (Bruny Island).
Verso with T. Nevin late A. Bock , 140 Elizabeth St. Hobart Town commercial stamp
Verso inscriptions include these identifiable figures at the "Picnic":
Father = John Woodcock Graves jnr,
Sir John O'Shanassy = former Premier of Victoria,
Self = Jean Porthouse Graves, daughter of John W. Graves,
L. Boyes = Lukin Boyes (?), son of G.T. W. Boyes
From an album compiled by the families of John Woodcock Graves jnr and R. Byron Miller
Private Collection © KLW NFC Imprint 2015

Truca Graves
A lion sculpture greeted visitors on the steps of Caldew, West Hobart, home of the family of solicitor John Woodcock Graves the younger, first photographed by Thomas J. Nevin ca. 1870 as a stereograph with Byron Miller, Lukin Boyes, Frederick Boyes, and sisters Jean, Matte, and Truca Graves.

Above: Group portrait of two male adults, one boy and three girls, members of the Graves, Miller and Boyes family taken by Thomas Nevin ca. 1870 at Caldew, West Hobart.
Stereograph in arched mount on yellow card
TMAG Ref: Q16826.10

Possible identification as follows:
Frederick Lukin Boyes: the boy seated on the grass who died in 1881, aged 16 yrs, son of Lukin Boyes.
Lukin Boyes, Customs Officer: the man seated on right in light clothing who is patting a goat or deer.
Jean Porthouse Graves (born 1858): the teenage girl sitting next to Lukin Boyes, daughter of John Woodcock Graves jnr (not pictured here).
Robert Byron Miller, barrister: sitting on the same bench, whose son Francis Knowles Miller later married Jean Porthouse Graves.
Two more of John Woodcock Graves four daughters: the two other girls, one sitting on a chair at extreme left, and the other seated on the grass, were possibly Mimi (born 1862), Trucaninni as Truca (1864) or Mathinna as Matte (born 1859). The latter two were given Aboriginal names at birth.

This photograph (below) was taken of Jean Porthouse Graves about seven years later, noted as "self" along the edge of the page on which it was pasted in her family album. She stood in the doorway of Caldew ca. 1877, gazing directly at the photographer. Her father, solicitor John Woodcock Graves jnr by this time was deceased. He had died suddenly in 1876 of congestion of the lungs and pneumonia, leaving a widow, pictured here seated in the doorway and four daughters. Listed as present here by Jean are two of her sisters, Trucaninni (Truca) and Mathinna (Matte), with their father's former colleagues R. Byron Miller standing next to Jean, and Lukin Boyes, seated with one of the Graves' daughters. Lukin Boyes was a witness at the marriage of John Woodcock Graves to Jessie Montgomerie in 1857.

Inscribed on page: "Caldew, Hobart, Mother, Matte, Mister Miller, Lukin Boyes, Truca, self"

Inscribed on page: "Caldew, Hobart, Mother, Matte, Mister Miller, Lukin Boyes, Truca, self"
From the Graves and Miller family album, complete page below
Photos copyright © KLW NFC Imprint 2015 Private Collection

Inscribed on page: "Caldew, Hobart, Mother, Matte, Mister Miller, Lukin Boyes, Truca, self"
From the Graves and Miller family album
Photos copyright © KLW NFC Imprint 2015 Private Collection

Earlier poetry by Ann Elizabeth Kearney née Lovell
The first, published in 1849 was penned a year or so prior to Ann Lovell's marriage to Thomas Kearney in 1848. Written in the voice of an unnamed widow who is at that moment relinquishing her child Agnes to death, the poem may have been based on real events in Ann Lovell's family. Then again, it may be little more than a generic poem expressing grief at death in the Romantic tradition, produced by a young poet practicising her art.

1848: "A Widowed Mother’s Lament on the Death of Her Only Child"

Source: Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957), Friday 17 August 1849, page 4 Original Poetry


And must I give thee up, my child ?
A fair young mother weeping said -
Long, long was this sad heart beguiled,
With hope, but that at last is fled.

Yes, death is stamped upon thy brow,
The clammy drops are gathering there,
And thou wilt leave thy mother now,
A pray to anguish and despair.

No more, no more, thy gentle smile
Shall wake this heart to hope again
No more, no more, wilt thou beguile,
With soothing words, thy mother's pain.

Thy lip hath lost its roseate hue,
Thy cheek 's deprived of healthful bloom,
And thy soft eyes, of heavenly blue,
Must soon be closed within the tomb.

Thou wert the only solace left,
Thy mother's widowed heart to cheer;
Death, cruel death, has me bereft
Of all, save thee, my Agnes dear.

I know 'tis useless to repine,
And murmur thus, 'gainst Heaven's decree
I must my only hope resign,
Yes, Agnes, I must part from thee.

I yield thee, though this bleeding heart
Can scarcely bear to let thee go,
Oh, Agnes ! thus from thee to part,
It is, indeed, excessive woe.

Forgive, dear child, my selfish love,
That would thy gentle soul retain,
That will not let it mount above
To that bright world, released from pain.

She wept in silence, as she gazed
Upon the corpse of that fair girl,
As, with her hand, she gently raised,
And parted back the clustering curl.

Then said - I will no more repine,
or murmur, 'neath the chastening rod,
Freely, my all I will resign,
And yield thee, Agnes, up to God.

A. E. Lovell.
Source: Original Poetry. (1849, August 17). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957), p. 4.

This second poem, written in 1872 can be taken as autobiographical in some part, written in the years when Ann Elizabeth Kearney suffered verbal and physical violence from her husband Thomas Kearney, details of which were stated before judge and jury in 1875 in the case SIMMONS v. KEARNEY (see transcript above of The Case). She told the court then of his alcoholism, his "intemperate habits" and her fear "he would have murdered me" when hesitating to give him money to buy more alcohol. His daughters Ada and Annie Kearney also testified to the violent behaviour of their father towards their mother. Richmond residents too remembered him as a "very intemperate man". Thomas Kearney's neighbour Mr. Searle thought " he was on the verge of insanity, and that if something was not done at once he would surely go mad". By his own admission Thomas Kearney said his intemperate habits began young, 35 years ago. His friend and lawyer John Woodcock Graves saw him frequently intoxicated and said in court that the damage he was causing to the property resolved his decision to draw up a settlement to sequester some portion for Ann Kearney. For her part, as this poem testifies, her life was a "harsh battlefield". She had grown old prematurely, without hope, her heart "stern and cold," betrayed by the inconstancy of "Man's love, ah!"

1872: "A Life's History: Sad but True"

Source: ORIGINAL POETRY. (1872, May 4). The Tasmanian (Launceston, Tas.), p. 2.



Life was once a scene of gladness,
All I look'd on bright and true;
Grief came not with brow of sadness
To mar the picture fancy drew.

The future seemed a landscape fair,
Deck'd with bright flowers that could not fade,
And loving friends were smiling there,
Who now are in the dark grave laid.

Yet even in childhood's happy day,
Too soon I learnt earth's joys are brief;
Death snatch'd my dearest friend away,
'Twas then I knew my first great grief.

But childhood's tears, though for a while,
In bitterness and sorrow flow,
Are quickly followed by the smile
Of roseate hope's delightful glow.

Then came a time, when at my feet,
One knelt my trusting heart to woo;
The words he spoke were passing sweet,
He fondly vowed he e'er be true.

Ah! then my girlish fancy dream'd
Of man's enduring love and worth,
And he I worshippped only seemed
A being all too bright for earth.

Alas! to see mine Idol fall,
To find he was indeed but clay,
Has strewn a dark funereal pall
O'er all that once was bright and gay.

Man's love, ah! 'tis a thing of change -
The fleeting passion of the hour;
Inconstant still he loves to range.
And gather sweets from every flower.

There was a time I sadly wept
O'er each harsh word, each broken vow;
Then hope its cheering beacon kept
To guide where all is darkness now.

Now o'er my soul the waveless calm
Of cold despair is darkly spread;
The future cannot bring alarm
Or gladness for all hope has fled.

Ah! years of weary care and strife
Have made me prematurely old;
In the harsh battle-field of life
This heart has now grown stern and cold.

Well, let that pass, 'tis mine to yield
Submission to the Almighty's will;
He knows my lot, and He can shield
The sorrowing heart that trusts Him still.


Ann Elizabeth Kearney's Will
The final apportionment of the combined properties of Ann Elizabeth Kearney's inheritance from her father's estate, Carrington, and the residue of her husband's estate at Laburnam, including her own portion at Enfield, Richmond, Tasmania, was finalised by her executor, her son Albert Kearney, at her death from influenza in 1898. This copy of her original will is held at the Archives Office of Tasmania.

In the Supreme Court of Tasmania
Ecclesiastical Division

Be it known unto all men by these present that on the fifth day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety eight the last Will and Testament of Ann Elizabeth Kearney late of Richmond in Tasmania deceased (widow of the late Thomas Kearney) deceased who died at Enfield Richmond aforesaid at or on about the thirteenth day of June one thousand eight hundred and ninety eight (a true copy of which Will is hereunto amended) was exhibited and proved before this Honorable Court and that administration of all and singular the goods chattels rights credits and effects of the said deceased proven [?] the Island of Tasmania and the Dependencies thereof was and is hereby committed to Albert Edward Kearney of Richmond aforesaid farmer one of the executors in the said will named (Reserving nevertheless to Thomas George Kearney William Kearney and Ernest Charles Kearney all of Richmond aforesaid the other executors in the said Will named full power and authority at any time hereafter to apply for and obtain Probate of the said Will and administration of the goods chattels rights credits and effects of the said deceased either jointly with the said Albert Edward Kearney or otherwise as the case may require). The said Albert Edward Kearney having been first sworn well and truly to perform the said Will by paying first all debts of the said deceased and then the Legacies therein bequeathed so far as the estate shall therein to extend and the law finds him and to make and exhibit unto this Honorable Court a true and perfect inventory of all and every the goods and chattels rights and credits and effects of the said deceased on or before the fifth day of May ?? ensuing and to render a just and true account of his executorship when he shall be lawfully called thereunto And further that he believes the goods chattels rights credits and effects of the said deceased at the time of her death did not exceed in value the sum of Fifty pounds in Tasmania and the Dependencies thereof.

Given under my hand and seal of the Supreme Court of Tasmania on the fifteenth day of November in the year of the Lord one thousand and eighthundred and ninety eight. By the Court - Philip Seager - Registrar

This is the last Will and Testament of me Ann Elizabeth Kearney Widow of the late Thomas Kearney of Richmond Tasmania in the County of Monmouth Tasmania shall this twenty seventh day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety three hereby revoke all wills made by me at any time heretofore. I appoint Thomas George Kearney William Kearney Ernest Charles Kearney and Albert Edward Kearney all of Richmond Tasmania to be my Executors and direct that all my Debts and Funeral Expenses shall be paid as soon as conveniently may be after my decease. I give and bequeath unto my son Thomas George Kearney the cottage where he now resides together with Ten acres of land including half the orchard the other half of the orchard I leave in trust to my son Albert Edward Kearney for the use of the house and to assist in the maintenance of my daughter Annie Lousia Kearney the cottage I now reside in known as Enfield Cottage together with the household furniture and all my personal effects also twenty acres of land adjoining house also eight cows and all young cattle I may be possessed of at the time of my decease. I bequeath to my daughter Florence Susanna ten acres of land adjoining Ada Emily's portion. I bequeath to my son Ernest Charles ten acres of land together with one horse iron harrows and D. F. plough. I bequeath to my son Albert Edward nine acres and one half of land with stables also one acre at present rented by P. Keady in the town of Richmond together with remainder of farming implements including winnowing machine plough dray etc I bequeath to my son William and my daughter Eva Alice thirty two and half acres adjoining the above properties to be equally divided between them I bequeath all my share and interest under the will of my father Esh Lovell deceased to my sisters to use or convert into money as they shall deem fit and expedient for the benefit of all my children share and share alike. Any sown [?] or growing crop on the property at the time of my decease to be left in trust to Albert Edward Kearney to divide as he may deem fit -

Signed by the said testator A. E. Kearney in the presence of us present at the same time who at her request in her presence and in the presence of each other have subscribed our names as witnesses - Samuel Skemp - Myrtle Bank - Rowland Skemp -
Last Will and Testament of Ann Elizabeth Kearney 1893
Archives Office of Tasmania

Resources: external links

1. University of Tasmania papers donated from the estate of John Rowland SKEMP
Skemp, John Rowland (ed.), Letters to Anne: The story of a Tasmanian family told in letters written to Anne Elizabeth Lovell (Mrs Thomas Kearney) by her brothers, sister and other relatives during the years 1846-1872, (Melbourne, Melbourne University Press, 1956).

Reference to the index of John Rowland Skemp (1900-1967), who was the son of Rowland Skemp

2. Australian Dictionary of Biography, entries on Keanery and Lovell
Kearney, William (1795–1870)

Lovell, Esh (1796–1865)

3. Archives Office of Tasmania, BDM documents
Ann Elizabeth KEARNEY
Marriage 1848

Birth of child Thomas George Kearney
Death of child Catherine Kearney 1850

Death of child Clara Kearney 1851

Census 1851 Richmond

Death of child Catherine Kearney 1850

Birth of child William Kearney 1852

Births of twins of Annie Louisa and Ada Emily Kearney 1858
Registered by her mother, address given "Spring Hill Bottom"

Birth of child Florence Susannah Kearney 1858
Registered by her mother, address Coal River.

Birth of child Ernest Clark Kearney 1864
Birth registered by mother at Lower Jerusalem

Birth of child Albert Kearney 1866
Birth registered by mother, address "Enfield"

Death of Thomas Kearney 1889

Death of Ann Elizabeth Kearney 1898

Will of Ann Elizabeth Kearney

Thomas Kearney suffered severely from alcoholism in the 1870s, yet he survived to the age of 65, his death registered from "natural causes" in the district of Richmond. His wife Ann Elizabeth Kearney died nine years later of influenza. Her address given by her son Albert Kearney to the registrar as informant was "Enfield".

4. Newspaper publications of poetry and law reports re Anne Elizabeth Kearney nee Lovell
ORIGINAL POETRY. (1872, May 4). The Tasmanian (Launceston, Tas.), p. 2.

Original Poetry. (1849, August 17). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 4.

LAW INTELLIGENCE. The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954) 17 June 1875:page 2.

LEGAL. Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), Saturday 10 July 1875, page 1

5. Descendant families
Thomas Kearney (1824 - 1889)
KEARNEY.— Died suddenly on December 26th, 1889, at his residence Enfield, Campania, Thomas, eldest son of the late William Kearney, aged 65 years.
Family Notices (1890, January 4). The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), p. 4.

Poem "Lines" addressed to Trucannini Graves 1875
Jeanneret family files (p.75)

1966. Carrington House, Richmond, Tasmania, home of Esh Lovell, father of Ann Elizabeth Kearney nee Lovell
Photographs of Tasmanian Buildings and Individuals Taken by Sir Ralph Whishaw (NS165)
Archives Office Tasmania:

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Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Thomas J. Nevin at William Snelling's inquest 1875

Transported convict William SNELLING (ca. 1814-1875), a lifer, coach maker and businessman
Photographer Thomas J. NEVIN, inquest juror and government contractor
Photographer James CHANDLER, beneficiary of the Nevin family collections

Source: Archives Office of Tasmania
Photograph - Hobart- Butcher shop - W. Snelling c 1870s
Item Number:NS869/1/452
Start Date: 01 Jan 1870
Creating Agency: James Chandler, Photographer (NG1231) 12 Aug 1877-08 Jul 1945
Hooper Family (NG434) 01 Jan 1920
Series: Photographs of General and Maritime Interest (NS869) 01 Jan 1870-31 Dec 1950
View online:

The original of this photograph of W. Snelling's family butcher shop featuring five smiling individuals posed out front at the curb may have been taken by commercial photographer and government contractor Thomas J. Nevin ca. 1872-1874 shortly before former coach maker William Snelling's death from lung disease in January 1875.

The image has been disseminated widely across the internet and even offered for sale, in every instance purloined from the Archives Office of Tasmania's Flickr collection of photographer James Chandler (1877-1945). Since James Chandler was not yet born when this photograph was taken in the 1870s, its inclusion by the AOT among dozens of his works taken in the 1900s on their Flickr page might suggest the date - 1870s - is incorrect, especially as there is no photographer attribution given to suggest another, earlier photographer. However, a number of works - stereographs as well as cabinet and cdv portraits - which Thomas J. Nevin produced in the 1860s-1880s were not imprinted with his stamp if they were one of several taken in the same sitting or of the same view in the endeavour to obtain the best shot. The fact that Thomas J. Nevin was required to attend William Snelling's inquest on 25 January, 1875, strongly suggests the date given to the photograph is correct, in the first instance, and that William Snelling and Thomas Nevin were closely acquainted. In the second instance, it is the photograph's provenance which supports Nevin's attribution. It was in the possession of James Chandler, a distant relative and beneficiary of Thomas J. Nevin's collections and indeed of his expertise, in the wider family network. James Chandler was related to Thomas J. Nevin by virtue of his mother Mary Chandler nee Genge's sister's late marriage - his aunt Martha Genge - to Thomas' father, John Nevin snr. Read more about these family connections in this post here (November 2021).

The five people featured in this photograph - a woman in a cap and apron, three men in white coats and butchers' aprons, a youth in suit and hat casually propped against a lamp post, plus a dog - are all unidentified. Perhaps the man standing next to the woman was W. Snelling since as a pair they appear to be closer to middle-age than the other two employees in butchers' aprons who appear several years younger. The teenager in street clothes leaning on the lamp post and grinning from ear to ear, as likely as not might have been the youngest son of the family, the delivery boy, or indeed the photographer's assistant.

There was no shortage of butchers' shops in Hobart in 1873. According to the statistician's report tabled in Parliament, of 203 butchers listed for the whole of Tasmania, 35 were in business in Hobart, 30 in Launceston and 24 in Oatlands. Only seven (7) coach makers for the whole island were listed: 3 in Hobart, and 4 in Launceston. The question remains therefore, was the butcher W. Snelling among the 35 listed, and was the coach maker William Snelling among the three listed in Hobart, or indeed, were they one and the same man? From statistics published between 7th February 1870 and 31st December 1873, eighteen (18) photographers were counted in Tasmania, Thomas J. Nevin among them, but by far the largest group were publicans - 443 in total in 1870; 403 in 1873 with 135 in Hobart compared with just 60 in Launceston. The next largest group were boot and shoemakers: 318 in total, 60 in Hobart alone, the rest spread out across the island.


The location of W. Snelling's butcher's shop is not certain. It may have been located at 60 Harrington Street Hobart when William Snelling resided there in 1860 in a house and shop owned by Joshua Jennings (Valuation Rolls, annual combined value £30). Another possibility is John Street where a number of businesses operated next to Weaver's Yard. John Street curved round the rear of premises between 212 and 214 Elizabeth Streets, North Hobart on the left looking north, between the Baptist Tabernacle and Tasma Street. It is still visible on Google maps running up the side of the Har Wee Yee Restaurant, now numbered 302 Elizabeth St. North Hobart.

According to the newspaper report of William Snelling's death in 1875, he was living at No. 4 John Street, Hobart, next door to Anne Gifford at No. 3 who discovered him dead on his bedroom floor. No mention in the report was made of family members residing with him at his death.

Friday, January 2, 1874.

Thomas Nevin at inquest, 25 January 1875
Thomas J. Nevin was one of seven Jurors to attend the inquest into William Snelling's death. His status as contractor to the Municipal Police Office, Hobart Town Hall may account for his presence as informant, since Mrs Gifford notified the police on finding the body:

SUDDEN DEATH.- On Saturday morning, an old man named William Snelling, a painter, by trade, died suddenly at his residence, John-street. Information was given to the police, who had the body conveyed to the dead-house at the General Hospital.
Source: THE MERCURY. (1875, January 25). p. 2.

If William Snelling was known as a "painter" and not a butcher by trade at his death, this happy photograph of five friendly smiling faces, possibly provided to promote the family's meat and poultry business, may represent another man by the name of W. Snelling, despite its provenance in the collection of Thomas Nevin's family, acquired through descent by his young relative, photographer James Chandler and dated 1870s when deposited at the Archives Office of Tasmania in 1974. Whatever his relationship to the deceased William Snelling, whether as friend or client, Thomas J. Nevin was there to witness in an official capacity the coroner's report and endorse his findings.

The wording of the "Inquisition" document required the witnesses, the seven jurors, to write their names and place an inked seal (or finger?) next to their signature, viz:
IN WITNESS whereof as well the said Coroner as the Jurors aforesaid have to this Inquisition set their Hands and Seals the day and year and place above mentioned.

Detail of image below: Thomas Nevin's signature and inked seal or fingerprint (?).
The seven Jurors were:
John Smith (Foreman);
Thomas Nevin;
James Davies;
Thomas Hill;
John Kalbfell;
Thomas McLoughlin; and
Richard Rice.

Name: Snelling, William
Record Type :Inquests
Ship to colony: Larkins
Remarks: Free by Servitude
Date of death:23 Jan 1875
Date of inquest:25 Jan 1875
Verdict: Lung disease
Record ID:NAME_INDEXES:1360294
Source: Archives Office of Tasmania


Source: INQUESTS. (1875, January 26). The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), p. 3.

An inquest was held yesterday morning, at Allen's Royal Exchange Hotel, before Mr. Tarleton and a jury of seven, on the body of William Snelling, who was found dead at his place of abode on Saturday. Ann Gifford, who resides in John-street, next door to where the deceased lived, deposed that he had been ailing for a long time, though he was not actually bed-ridden. The last time she saw him was on Friday night, about half past ten o'clock, he was then in bed. Next morning, about 11 o'clock, as she did not hear him about, she went into the house and found him lying on the floor by the side of the bed. Information was at once given to the police, and the body was removed to the hospital. The evidence of Dr. Macfarlane, who made a post mortem examination, was to the effect that the cause of death was disease of the lungs. The jury returned a verdict accordingly.

The weekly police gazette, Tasmania Reports of Crime for Police, published this notice of William Snelling's inquest with details of his status at the time of death - "F. S." - free in servitude, having arrived at Hobart as a transported convict on board the Larkins, sentenced to life:

Police Gazette, notice of 26 Feb 1875, p.31

AN Inquest was held at Hobart Town, on the 25th ultimo, before William Tarleton, Esq., Coroner, on the body of William Snelling, F. S., per Larkins, aged about 61 years. Verdict: - "Died from natural causes, to wit, disease of the lungs."
Provenance of the photograph
This original (i.e. a real print and not a copy of a scan) photograph of William Snelling's shop found its way into the Archives Office of Tasmania from the Nevin family collection of Minnie Drew nee Nevin, youngest daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Nevin. It was donated on her death in 1974 by funeral director and distant relative, Vic Hooper. One of a dozen or so photographs - some original cdvs but mostly just scans of the originals - which were taken by Thomas J. Nevin in 1860s-1880s and donated by Vic Hooper to the AOT were inherited by him from his uncle, photographer James Chandler (1877-1945) who was in turn the nephew of Thomas Nevin's  father John Nevin snr (1808-1887) when he married James Chandler's aunt, Martha Genge late in life, in 1879.

James Chandler (1877-1945) was born in August 1877 at Thomas J. Nevin's former photographic studio, 140 Elizabeth St. Hobart.  Hardly predictable but ultimately not altogether surprising is that he chose the vocation of professional photography from childhood. His father William Chandler had acquired the studio lease from owner John Henry Elliott on Thomas Nevin's appointment to the civil service with residency at the Hobart Town Hall in 1876. William Chandler snr operated a shoe-making business at Nevin's old studio up until 1890, when he moved with his son James to premises at 39 Liverpool St. Hobart.

James Chandler was Thomas Nevin's successor to professional photography within the extended family, his young "cousin-in-law". As a member of the Southern Tasmanian Photographic Society, James Chandler may have used this photograph in his lecture series in 1926 on "Early Hobart". The views presented from his collection recorded the growth of Hobart from ca. 1820 to 1880.

Archives Office of Tasmania holdings
NS434 Photographs of the Chandler, Genge and Hooper Families 01 Jan 1860 31 Dec 1960
NS869 Photographs of General and Maritime Interest 01 Jan 1870 31 Dec 1950
NS1231 Photographs of Hobart and Suburbs, Port Arthur and Ships 01 Jan 1910 31 Dec 1940

NS434 Photographs of the Chandler, Genge and Hooper Families 01 Jan 1860 31 Dec 1960

William Snelling: a brief biography
William Snelling (ca, 1814-1875) was a coach painter, coach maker, and possibly the owner of a Hobart family meat and poultry business. The son of a coach and herald painter, he was a mere 17 years old when he was transported for life in 1831. He was assigned to James Dickson in 1840, sought permission to marry Eliza Clark, also a transported convict, in 1842, and gained a conditional pardon in 1845. By the mid 1850s, he was an established coach maker at 247 Elizabeth St. Hobart, near the corner of Elizabeth and Warwick Streets.

TUESDAY, MARCH 16, 1858.
247 Elizabeth St. Hobart.
Occupant William Snelling
Owner - Taylor
Annual value £16
Type of dwelling House.

Source: Archives Office of Tasmania
Hobart Valuation Rolls

The business addresses Snelling advertised through 1855 and 1856 were located opposite the Jewish Synagogue and Bateman's livery stables, Liverpool St. Hobart:

May 1855: Tasmanian Daily News

July 1855: Hobart Town Advertiser

December 1855: Colonial Times Hobart

A cruel hoax 1855
Just when William Snelling's star was rising in business, he fell victim to a cruel prank. In November 1855 he was reported to police as an absconder called Michael Nugent by a former inmate James Edwards. None the wiser, the police locked up Snelling overnight at the station house. Since no motive was established subsequently at trial, Edwards walked free, leaving Snelling no recourse other than the press.

Yesterday a constable placed Mr Snelling, coach painter before Mr. Burgess. It appeared from his statement that he appreheded him in Elizabeth-street, the night before on the suspicion of being an absconder. He since found out his mistake. To justify his suspicion on the course he had taken in apprehending a free man he procured from the Comptoller-General's office the description of Michael Nugent, an old Sydney prisoner, of whose where abouts, the convict authoritiies are ignorant, and of which they appear to have been ignorant for some time. The difference between the description and that of Snelling, must have been patent to any man except a Tasmanian constable. The height was different the complexions different, and the very accent would show any man, accustomed to conversing with different men in this colony that Snelling was not an Irish man, while the document from the Comproller-General's office, proved that that Michael was a boy of the Nugent's from the Emerald Isle.
Snelling was most indignant at this unjustifiable interference with the liberty of the subject, and inquired whether there was no redress for so great an injury, as that of being falsely imprisoned and having been detained all night, and up to that hour from his home and business? No answer being given to his question, he said he should at all events have recourse to the press, to make known the injustice practised towards him evidently through bad feeling. He told the magistrate that he was well known to Mr. Symons the chief constable, as a free man, and he gave this information to the constable who looked him up. He left the court highly excited.
Source: Colonial Times (Hobart, Tas) Nov 21 1855

Extraordinary Case.- Last week Mr. Snelling, coach-maker, of Liverpool-street, was taken into custody, by two detective constables, old hands, Gordon and McGuire, as an absconded offender, named Michael Nugent. Mr. Snelling at the time was in company with three respectable innkeepers, who vouched for his freedom, offered to become bail for him to any amount, and solemnly declared, that they had known him for many years, as the veritable William Snelling, the coach-maker, and not Michael Nugent the bolter; it was of no use, Mr. Snelling was conducted to the watchhouse, locked up for the night, and at 3 o'clock the next day, and not before, brought before Mr. Burgess, when a remand was played for to produce the informer! But the anxious prayer was not granted, and Mr. Snelling was discharged.
And who was this informer, who thus stole away the liberty of a respectable tradesman?
One James Edwards, who has just obtained his Ticket of Leave, whose police record is, in the words of the Magistrate, "dreadful," and whose colonial career has made him acquainted with every penal settlement in the island, and out of it, and with all the especial virtues therein practised and upheld. And upon this man's word, in direct opposition to the solemn assertion of three well-known respectable citizens, was Mr Snelling dragged to the watchhouse, thrust into a loathsome "dirty" cell, and there imprisoned for many hours. There are circumstances connected with this monstrous case, which require the most rigorous investigation. We know how the police authorities, underlings included, hang towards the Police myrmidons [see definition below*], but times are not as they used to be, and public opinion, through its mighty organ, the Press, is now omnipotent, and, in this case, calls loudly and imperatively for the dismissal of men, who could have acted as these constables acted. With such a system at work, and with such men to carry out its abominations, what has happened to Mr. Snelling may happen to almost every one, and the curse of convictism be perpetuated, when its evils ought to be forgotten. The constables were merciful in this; they did not handcuff Mr. Snelling, but every other indignity was shown towards him by the Dogberrys at the station house. Suppose, however, Mr. Snelling had resisted this unlawful capture, as he would have been perfectly justified in doing? The manacles would have been quickly on his wrists, and the constables' batons in close companionship with his head, In short, the case is too monstrous, and in every respect too atrocious to be left where it is, and the sooner the proper authorities institute an investigation the better: it is open to Mr. Snelling to lay an information against these men, but that will be attended with personal expense to him, which he ought not to have added to his burthen: the chief constable must take the matter up, and that without loss of time. We may add, that Edwards was tried on Saturday before Mr. E. Abbott, for misconduct in misleading the Police, and on Monday, discharged, as His Worship could not dive into motives.
*myrmidon: a follower or subordinate of a powerful person, typically one who is unscrupulous or carries out orders unquestioningly.

Source: The Hobarton Mercury, Wednesday Morning, November 28th, 1855


RATHER STRANGE.—On Saturday last James Edwards was tried for misconduct as a prisoner of the crown, in having misled the constables, by representing to them that Mr. Snelling, the coach painter, (long known in town as a free man ) to be an absconder, of the name of Michael Nugent, was brought up yesterday before Mr Abbott, who stated that it was impossible to enter into men's motives, and as he did not know his motives for acting as he did, he should on this occasion dismiss him.
Source: Colonial Times (Hobart, Tas. : 1828 - 1857), Tuesday 27 November 1855, page 3

In 1857 William Snelling signed a petition to the Tasmanian Parliament in support of licensed victuallers. He listed his occupation as coach maker, of Elizabeth St. Hobart.

Source: Tasmanian Parliamentary Papers

To the Honourable the Speaker and Members of the House of Assembly
of Tasmania, in Parliament assembled

The humble Petition of the undersigned Inhabitants of Tasmania,


THAT your Petitioners recognise in the existing Laws for the Sale of Liquors in Tasmania enactments unsuited to a Free Colony dependent upon, and belonging to, the United Kingdom, and suited only to a Penal System now happily disappearing from this Colony.

That your Petitioners, being desirous of seeing the Laws by which they are governed keeping pace with the restored freedom of .the Colony, and assimilated as nearly as circumstances will permit to the Laws of England, beg respectfully to express their hearty concurrence in the Petition of the holders of Public-house Licences in Tasmania, and in the prayer of the said Petition for a revision of the Enactments which press so heavily upon them.

Your Petitioners therefore humbly pray that your Honourable House will be pleased favourably to consider the Petition of the holders of Public-house Licences in Tasmania, and grant the prayer of their said· Petition.

And your Petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray, &c.

Assault 1860-61
In 1860 William Snelling was working from premises at 60 Harrington St. when he was assaulted by a client, Thomas Bowden who was refusing to pay for Snelling's repairs to his carriage. The injuries were severe enough that Snelling may have decided to quit the coach business there and then and take his chances in the meat and poultry trade.

BEFORE Mr. Acting-Commissioner Browne, and Juries of four.
The Court sat by adjournment to dispose of the remaining cases on the list.
Mr. Lees for the plaintiff.
This was an action brought by William Snelling, coach painter, against Thomas Bowden, miller and baker, O'Brien's Bridge, for an assault ; the damages were laid at £30.
Mr. Lees said that the jury would have to assess the damages in this case as no defence had been entered. The learned counsel was proceeding to state the case to the jury when Mr. Crisp said that the defendant had instructed Mr. Graves to enter an appearance, and Mr. Graves was now out of town. He proposed, therefore, that the case should be put off on the payment of the costs of the day by the defendant, to enable him to file a defence.
This proposal was assented to, and the case postponed accordingly.
Source: Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), Tuesday 12 February 1861, page 2
THURSDAY, MARCH 16, 1861. (Before the Commission, Fielding Browne, Esq.) THIRTY POUND COURT.
SNELLING V. BOWDEN. An action for an assault. Damages laid at £30. Mr. Lees, for plaintiff, objected that no defence had been filed, and that the costs of the last hearing had not been paid, and therefore the defendant could not interfere with the assessment. Mr Graves contended that by the 13th Section of the Act his Honor had power to amend any defects if the opposite party had not been prejudiced. Mr Lees still objecting, Mr Graves claimed that he bad a right to cross-examine witnesses, and address the Court in mitigation of damages. Mr Crisp, (as the oldest practitioner), confirmed this, as the rule of the Court. Mr Lees then stated the case, and called Wm Snelling, the plaintiff who deposed -
— About four months ago, defendant came after a carriage I had repaired for him. I would not let the carriage go without the money, and finding I would not let it go out of the place, he knocked me down senseless. In a short time I recovered somewhat, and was knocked down again. He then went out, and I managed to get my key out, and locked my door. I was then going away, when defendant knocked me down again, and I remembered nothing more until I found myself in my bed. Dr Harvey attended me. My teeth are loose now. My stomach is injured and I cannot now use my left arm, nor sleep at night for the pain.
Cross-examined by Mr Graves — I did not agree to find new cotton and leather. I only was to make the carriage look decent to the sum of £11. Three persons have been pressing me to finish work since the assault, and I cannot do it. I have received the money for the carriage. I paid Mrs. White 2/6d for nursing me. I found myself in my own house after the assault. I did not walk home, nor do I know who carried me there.
William Vickers, detective constable, saw plaintiff on a day in the early part of January — did not see defendant.
Wm Parish, Charles Read, and George Smith corroborated the plaintiff's testimony; Parish and Smith deposing that when plaintiff was knocked down in the street the third time, he became insensible, and while in that state, the defendant lifted him up by the body, shook him as if he had been a dog, and then dashed him down on the ground. Mary White, nurse, proved the condition of the plaintiff, after the assault. Henry H. Harvey, medical practitioner, deposed that when he saw plaintiff, he was spitting blood, had extreme debility, and great pain in his extremities. He had a contused bruise in the mouth, and his arm was severely bruised. Ordered him twelve leeches for the breast, and appropriate medicines. I attended him between 2 and 3 weeks. My account amounts to £6 12s,
Cross examined — I have not yet received my bill.
Mr Graves addressed the jury in mitigation of damages, and admitted that the assault had been committed, but urged that the plaintiff had not stated the provocation he had given. He would undertake to say that the plaintiff's shop was empty, and that had the case been settled last Court, then the plaintiff would have been walking about rejoicing -, and would have discarded the sham of the sling. After a short interval, the jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff.— Damages £20. The Court was then adjourned until 10 o'clock, Friday morning. Friday, 8th March, 1861.
Source: COURT OF REQUESTS. (1861, March 16). Hobart Town Advertiser : Weekly Edt. (Tas. : 1859 - 1865), p. 8.
William Snelling, of Harrington-street, prayed sureties of the peace against William Duffy, for saying to him, on the 5th August, " I'll slaughter you."
Mr. Lees appeared for defendant.
Complainant stated that he had given defendant no provocation, was in bodily fear from his threat; defendant had never attempted to assault witness. Defendant said "If you interfere with me, I'll slaughter you."
Cross examined - Would take good care that he did not interfere with defendant.
Mr. Lees submitted, that as the threat was conditional the information must be dismissed.
The Bench directed the defendant to enter into his own recognisance of £10 to keep the peace for six months.
Source: POLICE OFFICE. (1861, August 14). The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), p. 3.

Less than a decade later, William Snelling would make the acquaintance of Thomas J. Nevin at the Working Men's Club, Barrack Street, Hobart, which had opened in October 1864 . The club's president, solicitor W. R. Giblin, later Attorney-General and Premier of Tasmania, acted on Nevin's behalf in the dissolution of the photographic partnership Nevin & Smith in 1868, and endorsed Nevin's government contracts with the Hobart City Council and police and prisons administration the same year through to 1886.

At the half-yearly meeting of the Working Men's Club held on Wednesday 21 April 1865, William Snelling seconded the motion put by Mr. C. Marshall that the report of probable receipts and expenditure be adopted (Cornwall Chronicle (Launceston, Tas) 22 April 1865, page 5). A review of the club's activities and amusements for members at the same meeting included mention of the steam pleasure trip to New Norfolk which was attended by 400 members and their families. On a similar trip in 1867, Thomas J. Nevin was reported to have taken "three photographic views of the animated scene" (Tasmanian Times 28 December 1867, page 3). On the 9th November 1865, William Snelling with five others petitioned the Colonial Treasurer and Director of Public Works to remedy the situation of hundreds of men rendered unemployed by private contractors when those men should have been employed by the government on the new portion of the Huon Road. The petition succeeded in gaining assurances that work would begin at once without calling for tenders on contract. (Tasmanian Morning Herald (Hobart, Tas) 10 November 1865, page 1).

Coach and herald painters
William Snelling was not the only coach painter to make the acquaintance of photographer Thomas Nevin. Tom Davis posed with one of Samuel Page's Royal Mail coaches for this photograph which bears verso Thomas J. Nevin's government contractor stamp. This print is held at the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston, Tasmania.

Above: original sepia print by T. J. Nevin with the figure of Tom Davis and Burdon's company name painted out (QMAG Collection Ref: 1987_P_0220).Tom Davis' scroll work would have included the colonial government's Royal insignia as well as decorative blazons. The verso bears T. J. Nevin's government contractor stamp with the colonial Royal Arms insignia used for commissions with the Hobart City Council and Municipal Police Office, in this instance for photographing Samuel Page's Royal Mail Hobart Town-Launceston coach service.

Above: this was the original capture by T. J. Nevin with the figure of Tom Davis and Burdon's company name visible (TMAG Collection Ref: Q1988.77.480). A copy with Tom Davis visible is also held at the Entally Estate, a 200 year-old heritage house located at Hadspen, eleven kilometres from Launceston.

Verso studio imprint: faded government contractor stamp with Royal Arms insignia which signified T. J. Nevin's joint copyright with the Lands and Survey Department, the Municipal Police Office, Hobart Town Hall and Hobart City Council, between 1865 and 1876.

Verso inscription: handwritten on the reverse of the original with Tom Davis painted out:
"From same photo held at Entally/ painted out background/ Burdons Coach Factory/ Man on r.h.s. of photo Tom Davis (has been painted out)/ 1872/ A.B. McKellar 328 Liverpool St/ coach body maker employed at Burdon and son when this coach was built"
Source: QMAG Collection Ref: 1987_P_0220

This is a clean example of T. J. Nevin's government contractor stamp
See more here: Trademarks copyrighted for fourteen years.

The craftsmen and their colours
A comprehensive article on coach builders and painters was published by Peter MacFie in 1996. The following extracts and summaries were taken from his article, Coachbuilding and related crafts in TasmaniaPapers and Proceedings, Tasmanian Historical Research Association, Vol 43, No. 2, June 1996, pp 77-88.

Many thanks to Jan Horton for providing access.
All of Peter MacFie's research is listed on his website:
The firm of James Burdon and Son became established in Hobart in 1849 on premises in Argyle Street, between Collins and Macquarie Streets. Burdon was originally employed by Alexander Fraser. Born in Nottinghamshire, England in 1822, James Burdon arrived in Tasmania via Victoria in 1841 aboard the Westminster. He married Mary, the daughter of merchant and former convict, Henry Burgess, at Hobart on 28 August 1846. He died at his home, Durham House, Hobart, in June 1893.
Burdon was an employer of assigned convicts. They included a rebellious Point Puer boy, George Maclean, 23-year-old Joseph Root, from Whitechapel, London, whose trade was 'Coach spring (maker?) can make vice and harness', and 25-year-old James WilIiams of Norwich, who was a 'Coach body maker'.
In 1850 William?/James Burdon coachbuilder of Argyle Street was complimented for his 'excellent work'. In 1855 Burdon constructed a new mail coach for James Lord. In 1860 he built a coach for Sam Backwell for the Bothwell-Melton Mowbray run, a fine vehicle".
In 1862 he patented a coach invention.
Another Hobart coachbuilder was McPherson's Coach Establishment of 55 Melville Street who acquired Burdon's premises, which later became Crouch's auction rooms.
In 1855 William Snelling operated as a coachmaker and coach painter in Argyle Street near Solomon's Temple. ie the Jewish Synagogue. Aged 17, Snelling, the son of a 'coach and herald painter' was transported in 1831. In 1837 he served briefly under Palmer, the Launceston coach builder, the same man under whom W. B. Gould served.
Other coachbuilders were David Yeoman of Kemp Street, off Collins Street in 1852; William Adamson of Bathurst Street in 1857; and in 1887 C. Dawson of Edward Street, Glebe; W. Easther of 27 St Georges Terrace, Battery Point; Henry Cripps at Kelly Street; E. Burrows of Melville Street; and N.P. Neilsen of the 'coach factory' at 67 Patrick Street....
[p.81, MacFie, THRA P & P 43/2]
...Finishing the vehicles required the coach painter and upholsterer. The more elaborate the decoration and finish, the more expensive. Learning coach painting included training in lettering and scroll work. These required a range of dozens of squirrel-hair brushes of varying degrees of fineness. With practice, these could be applied freehand; the greatest skill was to be able to paint scrolls with left and right hand simultaneously.
In 1833 B. Frost, coach painter, was in Liverpool St. In late 1836, the convict artist, William Beulow Gould, was assigned as coach painter to Palmer. These specialists continued to operate into the twentieth century. In 1857, William Snelling in Liverpool Street and John Atkinson of Murray street were Hobart coach painters, while Davis Howard in Patrick Street was a coach trimmer. In 1887 R.C. Dickens was a coach trimmer of 138 Argyle Street, D. Flood, coach painter of 183 Campbell Street, and Alfred Abbott was at 28 Goulburn Street. Bathurst Street, Hobart, was the location of three specialists, S. Terry, coach painter of 133, W. R. James, coach trimmer of 162, and Thomas Davis, coach painter, of 21O ....
[p.86, MacFie, THRA P & P 43/2]

Vibrant colours were used to paint the body, fine-line the scroll work and pick out the wheels. These particulars are summarised from Peter MacFie's article (1996: 77-88, THRA P & P 43/2 - with apologies, footnotes omitted):

E. A. Fawner, butchers, had a delivery cart painted in cream with gold and blue lines. The Lee Bros hay wagon was painted blue with white and yellow scroll work. Peter Barrett's delivery cart for ice and aerated waters was painted chrome yellow, picked out with blue and vermilion, fine-lined with chrome yellow and blue, with lettering done in gold. Crocker's coach constructed for F. W. L. Steiglitz of KilIymoon and based on a curricle owned by His Highness Said Pasha was painted sky blue and fine-lined in orange. Easther's Coach Factory built a cart for confectioner T. Gould painted dark green, fine-lined pale green, with cream wheels picked out dark green, fine-lined light green ... And  E.C.A. Nichols' Launceston cart was "painted in brown lake with fine white lines on the studs but none on the panels which adds to the appearance"...

Read the full article downloaded from the NLA here:

Extracts and summaries from Peter MacFie's article, Coachbuilding and related crafts in Tasmania. Published in Papers and Proceedings, Tasmanian Historical Research Association, Vol 43, No. 2, June 1996, pp 77-88.

ADDENDA: William Snelling's archival records

1. TRANSPORTATION per Larkins 1831
According to these partially legible notes, William Snelling was transported for crimes before 1831 which were serious enough to warrant a sentence for life and which included stealing tin pans and a pair of boots. On arrival in VDL his further offences included assault. He was granted a conditional pardon in 1845. His death in 1875 was also recorded here as the last inscription.

Snelling, William
Record Type: Convicts
Departure date: 18 Jun 1831
Departure port: Downs
Ship: Larkins
Place of origin: St Luke's, Middlesex
Voyage number: 89
Index number: 66509
Record ID: NAME_INDEXES:1436391

2. ARRIVAL at HOBART, Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania)
William Snelling was a coach painter, just seventeen years old, when he stepped ashore at Hobart to serve out a life sentence. He was short, fair and single.$init=CON14-1-3P73
Hobart Town Advertiser : Weekly Edt. (Tas. : 1859 - 1865), Saturday 16 March 1861, page 8

Snelling, Wm
Trade Coach painter St Lukes
Height 5/1
Age 17
Complexion fair
Hair brown
Whiskers -
Visage Oval Small
Forehead Perpend 'r [perpendicular]
Eyebrows brown
Eyes Blue
Nose Long
Mouth "
Chin [? illegible]
Remarks Large ears

3. PERMISSION to marry Eliza CLARK 1842
William Snelling's application to marry Eliza Clark, transported per Nautilus (1838) was approved on 10 March, 1842. She was nineteen years old on arrival, her former occupation was recorded as prostitute, and she had spent nine months in prison, received from Nottingham. The Nautilus surgeon on board recorded she was sick with diarrhœa on the 6th May, and discharged well on 8th May 1838.
The Principal Superintendent of Convicts, Josiah Spode, wrote to the Colonial Secretary on 14 September 1838 (AOT, CSO 5/140/3376 p.285) detailing the distribution of 133 female convicts received from England per ship Nautilus. 120 were assigned (from Hobart), two were forwarded to Launceston for assignment, five were not fit for assignment, three were sick, one died on board (Jane Brown) and two were unassigned (vacant).

Clarke, Eliza
Record Type: Marriage Permissions
Ship/free: Nautilus
Marriage to: Snelling, William
Ship/free: Larkins
Permission date: 31 Jan 1842
Index number: 12503
Record ID: NAME_INDEXES:1248404
Resource: CON52/1/2 Page 182
Archives Office of Tasmania

William Snelling
BIRTH 1814
DEATH 26 Jan 1875 (aged 60–61)
BURIAL Cornelian Bay Cemetery And Crematorium
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
PLOT Pauper, A, Number 146
MEMORIAL ID 212749474

Detail of oil painting by Hentry Gritten 1857
"The main road New Town with the coach Perseverance"
QVMAG ref: QVM:1949:FP:0440

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On board the "City of Hobart" 31st January 1872