Christmas from our Archives

HAND-TINTED PORTRAITS as CHRISTMAS CARDS Red and green sprigs 1874
PHOTOGRAPHIC REDUCTIONS of LARGE DOCUMENTS Cdv of Mercury 1874; fire bell warnings 1878
CHARLES DICKENS and CAPTAIN GOLDSMITH The Gadshill mail box 1859
CHRISTMAS DRINKS at the MAYPOLE Drunk and disorderly at New Town 1885
PRISONERS partying 1881 and SAILORS hugging the holly 1850
CHRISTMAS CONCERT Theatre Royal Hobart ca. 1958 … More Christmas from our Archives

Prisoner John FITZPATRICK and/or John Fitzgerald 1867-1885

John Fitzpatrick per Lord Auckland 2 – not Lord Lyndoch 2 – was 52 years old when T. J. Nevin photographed him on being received at the Hobart Gaol during transfer of several dozen prisoners under remand and sentence between July 1873 and August 1874 from the derelict Port Arthur prison.  There may exist a mugshot taken on the arrest in 1880 of a younger prisoner called John Fitzgerald whose name John Fitzpatrick used in 1870 as an alias – or not, given the destruction of prison records during the Joseph Lyons era of government in the first decades of the 20th century. Fifteen year old John Fitzgerald arrived at Hobart on the same ship, the Lord Auckland 2, in August 1846 as 21 year old John Fitzpatrick. … More Prisoner John FITZPATRICK and/or John Fitzgerald 1867-1885

Captain Edward Goldsmith: imports to Tasmania, exports to everywhere, 1840s-1860s

By 1850 and less than half a century since British occupation, Hobart (lutruwita / Van Diemen’s Land / Tasmania) was a town abundant in exotic flora, in no small measure due to the importation of every kind of fruit, flower and vegetable by merchant mariner Captain Edward Goldsmith (1804-1869) of Chalk, Kent and Rotherhithe, Surrey, UK. The press reported on 19 December 1850 that “Captain Goldsmith … has more than any other skipper, added to our Floral and Horticultural treasures”. The botanical “treasures” originated from the Americas, Europe and South Africa, in addition to carefully chosen specimens from the Royal Botanical Gardens in Kew (UK) and Sydney (NSW). Several were from Captain Goldsmith’s own plantations and nurseries in Kent (UK). Many varieties were imported at his own expense, others were consignments such as Mammoth strawberries for nurseryman Mr. Lipscombe, hops for Mr. Sharland, and a variety of exotic species selected for the Tasmanian Royal Society’s Botanical Gardens which were expected to thrive in Tasmania’s temperate climate. On return voyages Captain Goldsmith exported Tasmanian varieties of potato to assist Ireland in the grip of famine, and Norfolk Island pines to inhabit the otherwise bare hills of the Falklands Islands. From NSW he also imported animal stock such as merinos to improve Mr. Bethune’s bloodlines, and from the bloodstock of the Duke of Richmond he imported three fillies to improve the racing stock of the Lord brothers. There were also quantities of blue gum (eucalyptus globulus), skins of native animals, and indigenous plants conveyed back to Europe, destined for the great exhibition halls of London and Paris (1851-1855). Captain Edward Goldsmith retired to his estate in 1856 at Gadshill House, Telegraph Lane, Higham, Kent, UK. The large marsupial thylacine known then as the “Tasmanian wolf” and in modern times as the “Tasmanian tiger” may have been among the exports of indigenous animals he carried on one of his return voyages to London up to 1855 but the only export of a live thylacine to survive long enough to be photographed in 1865 by Frank Haes arrived at the London Zoo almost a decade later, in 1863, under the auspices of Tasmanian botantist Ronald Gunn. … More Captain Edward Goldsmith: imports to Tasmania, exports to everywhere, 1840s-1860s

In a party mood: prisoner Michael LYNCH (as Horrigan, Harrigan or Sullivan), Christmas Eve, December 24th 1881

Sixty-five (65) year old cook, Michael Horrigan (or Lynch, Harrigan and Sullivan), transported as Michael Lynch per Waverley (1) in 1841, was feeling festive on Christmas Eve, 24th December 1881. He celebrated by breaking into the residence of Alexander Denholm junior at Forcett, south-east of Hobart near Sorell, helping himself to a gold watch and some very fancy clothes. In a party mood, and probably dressed to the nines in Denholm’s tweeds, he then sought out and made sexual advances to Robert Freeman. Charged with indecent assault on Freeman in March 1882, Horrigan received a relatively light sentence of 12 months’ incarceration at the Hobart Gaol. … More In a party mood: prisoner Michael LYNCH (as Horrigan, Harrigan or Sullivan), Christmas Eve, December 24th 1881