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News from across New England, August 1870.

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The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser (NSW : 1843 – 1893), Tuesday 23 August 1870


(From the Armidale Papers. Aug 20.)

A fatal accident happened to an elderly married woman, named Rebecca Woods, on Friday evening last week. She and her husband were returning from Armidale to Gara station, on which Woods is a shepherd. They were on the road after dark, and in going along a rocky sideling the upper wheel of their dray was raised so high by coming on a rock that the dray turned over. The side of the vehicle fell upon the chest of the unfortunate woman, in whom life, it appeared, remained sufficiently long to enable her to tell her husband that she felt she was dying. Before she was removed from under the dray, which was done by Mr. Thomas Watt and others who were attracted by the cooeying of the old man, she was dead. Woods was fortunate to escape with only a few very severe bruises, and attended his wife’s funeral on Sunday. On Saturday the coroner held an inquest on the body of deceased, when a verdict of accidental death was returned. – In going out to Gara, while crossing a creek, the shafts of Mr. Markham’s buggy separated from the body. The horse went on, leaving Mr. Markham and the buggy surrounded by water. His position, however, not being very perilous, he escaped from it with no greater damage than wetted boots. On the following day, he and Mrs. Markham were both thrown out of the buggy, owing to a bolt coming out, but fortunately a few bruises were the only bad results.

On Thursday we received an intimation that, on the recommendation of Inspector Brown, Sen. Constable Walker, of Glen Innes, bad been promoted to the rank of Sergeant, for his gallant conduct with reference to Thunderbolt.

[The Telegraph says the promotion is to the rank of senior-sergeant]

GLEN INNES. – On Friday and Saturday last the district was visited by some of the heaviest rain known, even during these late months of wet weather. Thunder, lightning, and a high wind came in company with it. It began on Friday early, and lasted without ceasing until Saturday morning. The plains were a sheet of water, the creeks and rivers being higher than known for the last five years – in fact, there was a regular sea. The mailman to Grafton had to return to Glen Innes from the Beardy Plains, they being literally covered with water. Fortunately no damage or loss of life is reported. On Saturday, at ten a.m, I was told the river at Beardy was going down as fast as it had risen – so quickly that the Armidale mail coach came in about half-past four, having had, however, a narrow escape in crossing the Beardy at Stonehenge. Had it not been for the coolness and management of Mr. Leary, the driver, some accident must have happened. Mr. Patter left in the evening, and succeeded, also under great difficulties, in crossing at Yarrowford, on his way to Dundee and Tenterfield – The weather is now fine and frosty. There was a heavy storm on Sunday afternoon, after which it cleared up. – 15th August, 1870. Correspondent.

INVERELL. – On Friday last, at noon, it commenced raining heavily, and towards eight o’clock the River Macintyre was heard to murmur, which, increasing to a turbulent roar, soon became alarming. At two o’clock the water had attained its highest level, being within three feet of overflowing. Fencing alongside the river has in some instances disappeared. We have been informed that serious damage was sustained by the rising of the creek at Newstead, which partly destroyed the washpool, carrying away some of the sheep-washing apparatus. Aug. 15, 1870. – Correspondent.

DUNDEE. – We had a flood here in the River Severn (I believe that is the name of it) on last Friday night. The water rose ten feet, equal to the flood in 1863 – and it has done considerable damage. At Mr. Chappell’s wool scouring establishment, a large boiler was carried away, and has not been found as yet, and at Ranger’s Valley the dam on the river was swept away, while, amongst a great multitude of articles.carried off, were six casks of sheep’s tallow (1½ ton), some of which can be found. If we don’t get a bridge across this river, which is getting deeper every flood, we may expect to hear of the mail coach, horses, &c., being carried off some of those fine days – Correspondent. To the great regret of the residents generally here, the Rev. M. Keogan left Armidale for Grafton on Tuesday. As a number of his friends insisted upon his receiving from them some substantial token of their esteem, they presented him with an elegant gold watch and chain, the watch bearing a suitable inscription.

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May 21, 2013 at 8:30 am

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News from around new England, May 1869.

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The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser (NSW : 1843 – 1893), Thursday 13 May 1869

District News.


(Abridged from the Armidale Papers, May 8)

Since our last issue there have been a few light showers at Armidale, but on Saturday there was a pretty heavy fall at the Rocky and other places. The temperature is rather changeable, and hence colds are a common complaint. Express.

We understand that during the past fortnight the Gyra station, formerly in the possession of Mr. G. Allingham, and latterly in the hands of Messrs. Levy, has found a purchaser in the person of Mr. Montagu Marks, who we believe will take up his residence on the run. Rumour speaks of many intended improvements, and among others the erection of a new house for the owner. – Telegraph.

The Athletic Club at Armidale has now the large number of 67 members. – Express.

PASTORAL AND AGRICULTURAL ASSOCIATION OF NEW ENGLAND. – On Wednesday afternoon a Committee meeting was held, in the New England Hotel, to make arrangements for a ploughing match. There were present Mr. Thomas (in the chair), and Messrs. Markham, Miller, Waters, Fitzgerald, J. Moore, E. Baker, and W. L. Seeley. The committee being unanimously in favour of having a ploughing match, it was decided that it was desirable to invite special contributions towards that object, the present state of the funds of the Society not warranting additional expenditure ; and those of the public favourable to the proposal were requested to forward their contributions to the Treasurer before the 20th instant. – Express.

INVERELL. – On last Saturday night a storm of frightful violence occurred, the thunder literally shaking persons in their beds, accompanied by vivid and blinding sheets of lightning and torrents of rain. A tree was struck by lightning close to the Royal Hotel, and the fragments carried a considerable distance. – May 3. – Cor. of Express.

A serious robbery occurred on Sunday night at Mr. Ince’s Inn. It was discovered about half past ten o’clock that two boxes had been stolen from a bedroom. The police were at once informed of the occurrence, and they commenced to make a search, which resulted in the discovery of one of the boxes at some distance. This box contained clothing, and was all right when found. The other box was not found until next morning, when it was discovered near the creek, at the foot of Taylor-street. The box had been broken open, and £60 in a cash-box, together with some watches and papers, had been abstracted ; some deeds of land, however, were left. – Abridged from the Express, May 8.

CHINESE SWINDLING. – The Telegraph relates that on Saturday, May 1, a most rascally imposition was practised by a Chinaman at the store of Mr. Weston, at Maitland Point, which is managed by a Mrs. Jackson. Several Chinamen have long been in the habit of selling their gold at this store, among others one whose parcels have invariably been found genuine in quality. On the day in question John paid his usual visit, and handed Mrs Jackson a parcel of gold done up in the usual fashion. Taking it for granted that the parcel was genuine as usual, she weighed it, and handed him what she calculated to be the value (£67) with which he left the store. It was afterwards discovered by Mr. Weston that the parcel contained only sand and stones, ingeniously made up. The Chinaman is known to the police, and it is to be hoped he will soon be captured.

GLEN INNES. – We have had another change in the weather. After a few days’ severe frosts rain came on again; since then the weather has been soft and mild. – May 3. – Cor, Express.

INVERELL RACES. – These races came off on April 27 and 28. There was a pretty good attendance, and the races passed off with great spirit. The Maiden Plate of £20 was won by Mr. J. Gillespie’s Ding Dong. Mr. J. Bowman’s Slowboy carried off the Publican’s Purse, of £15. The Ladies’ Purse was won by Mr. F. McInnes’s Jack Spring. This formed the programme for the first day. On the second day the first race was the Town Plate, which was won by Mr. J. Bowman’s Slowboy. The Hurdle Race fell through for want of entrances, and a Hurry Scurry was substituted, which was won by Mr. J. Rose’s Topsy. The same owner’s Ranger took the Hack Selling Stakes, and the Forced Handicap, which was won by Slowboy, concluded the meeting. – Abridged from the Express.

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May 20, 2013 at 8:30 am

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News from around Armidale, August 1865.

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The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser (NSW : 1843 – 1893), Saturday 19 August 1865

District News.


GUYRA AND GARA STATIONS – This long-pending case, which had been referred to Messrs. Oliver and Greaves, has been submitted to an umpire, who, for a few days past, has taken all the evidence, which has been, as usual in cases of this kind, conflicting. The award, I hear, will shortly be made, and it may possibly end this lengthy affair, caused in the first instance, doubtless, by the different runs not having been properly described when taken possession of by the owners.

Grafton Road – A petition to the Minister for Lands is now being numerously signed, for transmission to Sydney, and it is hoped that this road, so beneficial to the interests of both this town and Grafton, will at once be placed under proper repair, at least so far as the sum voted will allow of.

Our Hospital – I am glad to report that the efforts of our collectors in town have been so far successful in the work of charity; and though not any of the lists have yet been handed in as complete, I hear that many of our townsmen have most liberally contributed to assist the funds.

Coroner’s Inquest – Mr Markham, our district coroner, held an inquest on Wednesday last, at Mr Galvin’s inn, on the remains of a shepherd who came into Armidale for medical relief. Several witnesses were examined, and the verdict was, “Died from natural causes.” The deceased was named William Weeks, and prior to his death gave over about £40 to Mr Galvin, requesting to be buried in a respectable manner. Mr. Galvin complied with his request, and the remains were consigned to the grave in a hearse and full-mounted coffin. The balance in hand will be given over to the Government, as it did not appear that he had any relations or friends near.

Our School of Arts. – We are most likely to have a boisterous meeting next Friday, which has been called for by three members and subscribers contending that the late election to the offices of president, vice-president, &c, was illegal, and not in accordance with the bye-laws of the institution. It will be, of course, an evaporation for the time being, and end in a nine days’ wonder. I do not offer any opinion as to these contests.

Rifle Corps. – This corps is likely, I hear, to be established. The preliminary meeting to propose rules, &c, was favourable to the affair, and it may be inferred that Armidale will shortly add, to other signs of advancement, a military force, consisting of many of our young men, possessed of ardour in the cause of “protection,” when needed against an aggression which at any future period may be attempted, the hon. secretary to the meeting will no doubt use his best endeavours to further the movement.

Streets. – A new culvert is nearly completed at the east end of Beardy-street; and, though these culverts are now and then complained of by a few, they seem to be well formed of the material to hand, and our municipal officers seem determined not to be in debt if possible – a praiseworthy resolution.

Our racecourse. – The appearance of the grandstand on this ground is most unsightly. We have a racing committee, and the repairs of this shed, or an improvement in its appearance, is worthy of notice, and I trust that the attention of the committee may be attracted to this scaffolding. Query, whether is be safe in its present shaky days?

Bridge in Marsh street – The tenderer for the getting and delivery of timber is to have it on the ground by the 1st September next. The sum tendered for £15.

Butchers Meat – I observed a large draft of cattle en route toward our town on Sunday last and no doubt these fetched full prices. The high price of cattle published in your and the Sydney papers, leave little doubt but that our friends of the “cleaver” will be making a good thing, consequent upon the sudden rise – I cannot say unexpected, for, with the severity of the season, no other conclusion could be arrived at.

Grafton Mail – It is impossible to state when the usual regularity of the departure and arrival of this mail will be resumed. On Sunday last, at four p.m., no mail, and due on Friday last, at six p.m. Our residents are much inconvenienced by this failure, and I trust that a fresh tended may be accepted on the 23rd instant, in order that we may have a regular transmission of correspondence.

Agricultural. – Our farmers are in good spirits at the appearance of the young crops, which is highly gratifying to those concerned, as well as generally. I hear that a large quantity of grain from the last season is still on hand, and our mills are now in full work; but fears are entertained that a rise in flour may take place, from the quotations at Sydney and elsewhere.

August 14.

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May 18, 2013 at 11:52 am

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News from Armidale, Feb. 1860

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The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser (NSW : 1843 – 1893), Saturday 11 February 1860

(Abridged from the Armidale Express, February 4.)

The weather, &c. – Since our last impression the rule has been warm days and cool nights. We are informed that on Sunday and Monday mornings there was white frost a short distance from town, but the maize did not seem to be injured by it. On Thursday the weather broke slightly, with thunder, but, although refreshing, the rain was too small in quantity to ensure permanent advantage. On a solitary farm or two a few hands may yet be seen employed gathering in a remnant of the harvest, but generally this work has terminated for the present. The farmers’ staple crop is now safely housed and no longer liable to damage from the elements. Labour has been abundant, and many reapers were met during the harvest enquiring where they could find a job. At the commencement of harvest we were visited by a few showers, but the water-holes away from main creeks are nearly dried up and others stagnant. Heavy rain would be a general blessing, and probably save the maize crop.

Fruit – On a visit to Gara station, about 12 miles from Armidale, lately, we were much surprised at the abundance of fruit in the orchard, and very much gratified in partaking of a considerable quantity, by which we can speak conscientiously of its excellent flavour. With regard to plums and apples, in particular, we never witnessed such extraordinary yields, the branches bending in some instances to the ground and in others breaking off with their abundant burdens. The American blight is still a stranger to Gara orchard, and long may it remain so. It is singular that the cultivation of fruit trees is so seldom attended to as it should be in New England.

(From the Tamworth Examiner’s Correspondent.) Patrick Hynes, charged with stabbing Constable Manning at Walcha, was this day (Feb. 2nd) brought before the Police Magistrate, pursuant to remand. Manning was able to attend, and the whole of the evidence was gone into. Hynes is committed to take his trial at the next Armidale Quarter Sessions, but allowed bail. Manning is in a fearful state; he will feel the effects of this brutal attack for a long time to come.

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May 15, 2013 at 8:24 am

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Outrage by the Macleay Blacks

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The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser (NSW : 1843 – 1893), Saturday 18 June 1864

Telegraphic Intelligence.

(From the Herald and Empire.)

Outrage by the Macleay Blacks.

On Sunday last about 50 Macleay blacks appeared on Gara, the head station of which is about 12 miles from Armidale. According to the information we have received, they went to a hut at an out station at Cooney’s Creek, and bailed up Mrs. Greves, one black standing over her with a tomahawk, while the others robbed the hut of flour and other articles. They also met a boy named Duberry, and, after robbing him of some tobacco, they halved his sheep and look away 400 or 500 to the edge of the Falls.

Mr. Edward Allingham, Jun., the superintendent, on receiving information of these outrages, went to Cooney’s Creek, accompanied by a stockman, and another man. When they came near a black ran from the hut, but on overtaking and threatening him he told them where the other blacks were. Mr. Allingham left him in charge of one of his men, and, in company with his stockman, galloped into the camp, scattering the blacks and shooting one of the dogs. The sheep being there, the blacks that remained were asked why they had taken them, when they said they did not want them ; they only wanted potatoes (of which there were some at the out station). They denied that they had guns, but eventually they delivered up four pieces. A fifth gun they had same trouble in getting a black to surrender.

In the camp were found two canisters of powder, one box of caps, some balls, and several blankets which appeared to have been distributed at Armidale. It is believed that the blacks had two other guns which were not got. None of the sheep had been killed, as the blacks said they were no good – not fat enough – but had Mr. Allingham been an hour later they would have been taken down the Falls, it is believed, and lost.

Armidale Express, June 11.

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May 13, 2013 at 8:43 am

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From the Armidale papers (Sept 4, 1869)

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The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser (NSW : 1843 – 1893), Thursday 9 September 1869


(From the Armidale papers, Sept. 4.) The weather at Armidale has been dry during the past week, with frosts every morning. The grass is springing, but it needs more rain From the imperfect manner in which many fruit trees are blossoming, a good crop of fruit is scarcely expected. — Express.

Shearing (according to the Telegraph) is to commence at Gyra (the station of Mr. Montague Marks) on October 1, and at Gostwyck shortly afterwards. Shearers were plentiful. — A growing desire on the part of squatters was recorded that a sheep-inspector should be appointed for New England.

John Muldoon, aged l8 months, son of Arthur Muldoon, a free selector at Baker’s Creek, was unfortunately burned to death on Thursday, during a brief absence of the mother. An inquest was held in Armidale yesterday, when a verdict of accidental death was returned. — Express.

Two Cornish well-sinkers have been very successful in procuring water in Armidale. — Telegraph.

Mr. Black, formerly Commissioner of Crown Lands, has been lecturing at Walcha, with a view to cause action in the matter of having a road opened between the Manning and Armidale, as an outlet for produce.

The Express publishes a telegram from the Colonial Secretary, received in Armidale on Wednesday, announcing that Lord Belmore will pass through New England on his way from Brisbane. A public meeting was to be held, to make arrangements for his Excellency’s reception.

INVERELL. — A man named Donald Ross, at the police court, Inverell, was fined £10, with the alternative of three months’ imprisonment, for illegally riding a horse.

A lad of fourteen, named James Leslie, was sentenced to be imprisoned for one month, for killing a young calf with a tomahawk. The boy, it appeared, was so ignorant that he could not repeat a prayer.

A barn belonging to a farmer named Phillip Wells was burned to the ground on the 28th August, and three or four hundred bushels of corn were destroyed.

On the 30th an old shepherd, named Donald Duff, was found dead on the Byron run.

A small party were prospecting at Middle Creek for precious stones; they had found some stones which resembled rubies. — Cor. Express.

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April 26, 2013 at 4:02 pm

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Bled to death

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The Maitland Mercury & Hunter River General Advertiser, Tuesday 15 October 1872


(From the Armidale Chronicle, Oct 10.)

Sudden Death – A shockingly sudden death occurred this week to a woman named Swift, the wife of a shepherd, residing on Gara Run. From what we been been able to learn, it seems that deceased’s husband had left the station to go lambing, and at that time his wife was apparently in good health. Swift was away from home several days, and on his return, last Tuesday, he was horrified to find his wife dead in bed, seemingly two or three days. The bed clothes were saturated with blood, and from the position of the body it was evident deceased had suffered much before death ensued, as her knees were almost doubled up to the chin. In the course of a magisterial inquiry, held at Gara, yesterday, before Mr. M. Marks, it came out that some three mouths ago Mrs. Swift received a fall from a horse, and had frequently since expectorated blood. Dr Spasshatt was in attendance, and having examined deceased, gave his opinion that she died from the bursting of a blood vessel. Mrs Swift, who will be better known as Mrs Faithers, was a very old resident in New England. Her funeral took place yesterday afternoon, and was largely attended.

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September 16, 2011 at 8:09 am

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