Australian English Genealogy

Descendants of Thomas Eather

Notes (Page 4)

24. Abraham Joseph Eather

DREADFUL DEATH -- Letters have reached this place from the Narran Creek given an account of the death of a young man John Griffiths, who perished on a journey from want of water. It appears that four young men, namely, Griffiths, James Ward, and two brothers named Eather, left the Barwin River with cattle and a horse-team, intending to proceed to the Narran Creek. They found all the waterholes dried up, and by the time they had got thirty miles on their route the horses were so knocked up for want of water that Ward and Abraham Eather started on foot with them to endeavour to make the Narran, 'and then return as quick as possible for their companions and the dray and cattle. Unfortunately they lost the track, and did not reach the hut on the Narran till the next morning being in a most deplorable state, from thirst, and having lost the horses. On informing the parties at the station how, they had left their companions , a man named Sparrow started with a number of blacks, taking some water with them : on arriving at the camp however he only found the dray there, the men and cattle being gone. Leaving the camp Sparrow then followed the track of the horses lost by Ward and Abraham Eather, but they proved too weak to be driven on the creek that night. He returned to the station, and found that the unfortunate men left with the cattle had not yet appeared. The next morning a man named William Thurlow started for the camp, and followed the tracks of the men and for some distance when he found the tracks diverge, the men proceeding in one direction, and the cattle in another, as if abandoned to themselves. By this time Thurlow's horses had got so weak, from the intense drought prevailing over the parched plains that he was obliged to make for the station at once, to save his own and their lives. On arriving there he found that young Eather had succeeded in making it; with the assistance of a blackfellow, who accidentally met with him about six miles from the station. Eather stated that Griffiths and himself waited at the camp all night, but finding their friends did not return, and that the cattle were very troublesome, they left it in the morn ing letting the dray remain there, but driving the cattle as well as they could. After going some distance they were obliged; to abandon the cattle, being too weak to drive them, and endeavoured to walk on to the Narran by themselves. When they had walked five or six miles Griffiths complained of being very ill from want of water, and laid down, and though, when urged by his companion, he rose; and went a little further, he laid down again, saying he could go no further. Eather urged him again and again to rise and go on, but he, would not, and Eather was obliged to leave him there, having marked the place well, so as to know it again. Eather then walked. on, although very weak, and at length happily met with the blackfellow, who took him to the station, having been two days and two nights without water. Having rested a little, Eather returned with Sparrow to the spot where he had left Griffiths, but the latter had left the place, and although the blacks tracked him for some distance, the ground then got so hard that all traces were lost, and their search was unavailing. The: next night a thunder storm fell, and all hope of tracking poor Griffiths was destroyed. The first letter that reached, us from the Narran, narrating this sad affair, was dated October 29th, and the second November the 5th, so that no hope remains that poor Griffiths's, life is preserved. He was a native of the colony, 'and about twenty years old. Wee Waa, Namoi River, Nov 29.

Source: The Australian 21 Dec 1847


Abraham spent time working as a jackaroo on his father's properties in the north west of New South Wales. On a trip to the Narran River, he and a friend left their two companions to go in search of water and became lost. Abraham was found, on the brink of death, by an aboriginal, after two days without food or water.

Abraham drove his fathers cattle and horses almost 500 miles, from Angeldool to Homebush (Sydney).

He settled at Belmore, NSW and worked as a produce merchant in Sussex Street, Sydney.


Last week we referred briefly to the death of Mr Abraham Eather, who passed away at his late residence, "Glendellen," Belmore, on the 12th instant, at the age of 77 years. For some time the subject of this notice had not enjoyed good health, but his end was somewhat sudden, though he died very peacefully, death being due to hemorrhage of the brain and senile decay. The late Mr Eather was a well-known and very much respected Hawkesbury identity. He was born in Windsor, and lived in the Hawkesbury district almost continuously until about four years ago — a period of 73 years — when he and his family went to reside at Belmore. Regarding his life and character nothing but good can be said. He was upright in all his dealings; honest and conscientious ; large-hearted and generous in words and deeds, and there are none to-day who knew him in the vigor of his youth and early man- hood, on through middle age, to the evening of his life, who could point the finger of scorn at good old Abe Eather, or say he ever performed a mean or un- manly action. He was a fine specimen of the race, one of the sturdy sons of which the Hawkesbury is so proud. His athletic feats are remembered by those who knew him fifty years ago. He was an athlete of remarkable prowess, fleet of foot, possessed of great endurance, and won many races. He owned several good racehorses, which also won for him a number of races. In later years he was known as the owner of the trotting horse Messenger, one of the fastest, of his day, and a successful sire of trotting stock. In the early days he helped to pioneer Angledool station, owned by his fattier, on the Narren, and as a man who could adapt himself to circumstances, a staid and plodding worker, and with the bush instinct of a typical colonial, he was worth half a dozen of the blustering sort, so often met with. The late Mr Eather was twice married, in Windsor on each occasion. There were two children by the first marriage, and eleven by the second. One girl by each marriage pre- deceased the father. His widow and twelve children survive him. The married daughters are Mrs A. Hentsch, Mrs R. F. Murphy, Mrs V. J. Gattenhof; the single daughters ; Tessie, Gertrude, May, Madge, and Eileen. The sons are : Abraham, Herbert, and Joseph, all in West Australia. Richmond people particularly will remember the Eather family. Most of them grew up there, and Mrs Eather, her late husband, and her daughters were always amongst the foremost workers for the Roman Catholic Church and charitable undertakings. The funeral took place at Rookwood on the 14th instant, and was largely attended. The chief mourners were the widow ; Mr and Mrs Hentsch, Mr and Mrs Gatten- hof, the Misses Tessie, Gertie, May, Madge, and Eileen Eather ; Mrs Ryan, grand-daughter ; Mr Casper Hentsch, Master Ralph Eather (grandsons), Mr and Mrs Geo. Eather (Richmond), Mr and Mrs John Wilkes (cousins), Mr and Mrs Joseph Murphy (niece).

Source: Windsor and Richmond Gazette 26 May 1906

Margaret Elizabeth McElligott

Died after a long illness.

181. Eileen Benedicta Eather

On Wednesday afternoon, the 7th April, St. Joseph's Church, Belmore, was the scene of a pretty wedding, the contracting parlies being Miss Eileen Ealher, youngest daughter , of the late Abraham Eather, of Richmond, SN.S.W., and Mrs. E. Eather, of 'Yablii,'' Wilison Avenue; and Mr. John Cole Medcalfe, of Gilinbine Station, Trundle. The church was tastefully decorated with palms and bamboo arches, by Mrs. Ingle and other friends! !The bride was attired in an ivory silk dress with overdress of lace, embroidered veil of tulle and wreath of orange blossoms. She carried a dainty bouquet of white bouvardias, cactus, dahlias and jonquils, this, with a travelling case, being the gift of the bridegroom. The bridesmaids, Miss Eileen Murphy and Miss Eileen Eather (nieces of the bride) wore shell pink silk crepe dresses with red shower bouquets, and Nellie Stew art bangles were gifts from the bridegroom. The bride was given away by her brother Corporal Joe Eather, who leaves for the front with the 12th Regiment of Light Horse. ? After the ceremony a reception was held at the residence of the bride's mother. The toast of the bride and bridegroom was proposed |by Rev. Father Kenny, in a few well-chosen. m words, the bridegroom responding. The happy couple then left by motor for Simpson's . Hotel, Port Hacking. The bride's travelling dress was a coat and skirt of maltier blue 'cloth trimmed with black mauve silk and black velvet hat.

Source: Windsor and Richmond Gazette 30 Apr 191

William Freeman

Murdered by his brother-in-law


A MAGISTERIAL enquiry was held at the residence of William Freeman, at Agnes Banks, on Wednesday last, before Mr. J.K. Lethebridge. J. P. An inquest was ordered, but sufficient jurymen could not be found, as the people in the locality were nearly all related to the principal parties. A man named Robert Williams was in custody at the enquiry, as it was reported that he had committed the murder A post-mortem examination was made by Dr. Jockel, aud Mr. Lethebridge, after viewing the body, took the following evidence : -
Wellington Freeman, a farmer, deposed that he is a son of the deceased's, who was 69 years of age at the time of his death ; he resided with witness, at Agnes Banks : on the 22nd of February witness was, between 10 and 11 o'clock, working at the back of the barn ; deceased was working in the granary, husking corn : Robert Williams slept there ; he did not know whether Williams was in the granery whilst deceased was working there ; he did not see Williams there that day; whilst witness was at work he heard his mother screaming ; he ran over towards the barn and met her in the barn ; from something his mother told him. he ran into the top granary where his father was working ; when he got there he saw his father lying on the floor, with his face dipping into the corn ; he was lying on his right side, and a chair in which he had been previously seated was upset ; his head and face were covered with blood ; witness called him three times but he made no reply ; there was no one in the granary except his father when he went up ; he appeared to be dead : witness then got on his horse and went for Dr. Jockel and gave information to the police at Richmond ; the prisoner before the Court resided with witness : he is uncle to witness, and has resided with them for about 19 years ; his father was paid for his maintenance by George Williams ; prisoner and his father never spoke to each other although living in the same house ; prisoner has been supposed to have been suffering from aberration of mind, but has not been looked upon as dangerous to be at- large : when witness was going for the doctor, he overtook prisoner near Devlin's gate, about a quarter-of-a-mile from Agnes Banks : he had a knife and stick in his hand and was going towards the road leading to Richmond ; prisoner and witness were, on friendly terms and he never heard him express any threat towards his father ; he was not frightened of his father.
To prisoner : His father never hurt him at the grindstone when he went there to sharpen his knife ; never saw his father carrying a bucket, going for potatoes with a hoe on his shoulder and strike prisoner with that hoe and down him ; he recollected assisting his father to mend the road about three months ago ; his father did not at that time strike or threaten to strike prisoner with a hoe; he never saw him strike him at anytime. (Prisoner here remarked that ever since " Farmer's Glory " was sold, now 30 years ago, that deceased had been murdering him every day, and knocking him senseless, and trying to rob him of his property.)
Edward Pearce, a farmer residing at Agnes Banks, said about 11 o'clock yesterday he was on the next farm to Freeman's, and saw the last witness running towards home ; he followed him as he thought something was the matter; witness went up into the granary and saw deceased lying on his back against a heap of corn, the head being in a quantity of blood : he rose him up and held him until his wife came up ; they gave him brandy, but to all appearance he was dead ; he did not see prisoner anywhere about : he is looked upon by the neighbours as not being right in his mind, although harmless.
Senior-Constable McNeelly said between ll and 12 o'clock on the 22nd instant he, in company with Constable Miles, proceeded to Agnes Banks, and found the prisoner lying on the side of the road leading to Castlereagh ; he arrested him ; prisoner had a knife in his hand and a stick was lying alongside of him ; witness secured the knife (produced, as also the stick) : prisoner said he had been at Richmond that morning : he then took him to the residence of deceased, and into a room where
deceased was lying, and asked him did he know him ; he replied " Is he dead ? he is not dead," stooping down and looking at the body : prisoner then said, " He tried to kill me " : witness then said to prisoner, " I charge you with wilful mu der, killing William Freeman, now lying there dead," cautioning him at the same time ; he made no reply to the charge : witness then confined him in the lockup at Richmond : he saw no signs of blood on the prisoner nor on his clothes ; there was no blood on the knife nor stick, which were then in the same state as now.
Wellington Freeman, recalled, identified the stick and knife produced as those the prisoner had in his hands when he saw him.
Thomas Freeman a son of the deceased's, who now resides at Gannon's Forest, near Sydney, said prisoner is a brother-in-law of his father's, and he saw a scrimmage between them about 18 years ago, and they never spoke to each other afterwards.  Sergeant Fowler, of the Penrith police, said he, that morning, examined the granary in which the deceased was said to have been killed ; on the corn there was a lot of blood : where the windows should have been iron bars were fitted, one of which was missing ; he found it standing against the chimney ; he produced that bar, on which are some grey hairs and marks of what appears to be blood ; he showed the bar to Dr. Jockel, and he and the doctor fitted it across the injury to the scalp of deceased. (The prisoner, when asked had he any questions to ask the Sergeant, said he never lifted that bar, but that he hit deceased with the stick produced,) Dr. Jockel having made a post-mortem examination of the deceased, found externally two wounds on the crown or poll of the head, two inches in length, laying bare the bone ; on the left temple one wound an inch in length, also ex posing the bone : behind the left ear a wound three-quarters of an inch long, and in the same situation, but lower down, two flesh wounds ; on reflecting the skull he found it extensively fractured ; from the first two wounds a fracture of the skull extended right across to the right ear, 5 inches in length, involving the two parietal bones and right temporal bone ; another fracture starts from the same wounds, four inches in length, involving the occipital bone : right underneath the wounds there was a diamond-shaped loose bone about an inch long ; on removing that the brain was perfectly visible ; it was highly congested ; underneath the wound, in the temporal region, the bone is extensively fractured and depressed, pressing heavily on the brain for about a fingers' length : the iron bar produced is a likely weapon to cause the wounds he has described, and in his opinion the instrument which caused those wounds ; in his opinion he is grounded by having fitted the instrument over the site of the wounds : such an instrument would make with one blow two clean cut wounds such as first described ; altogether he was of opinion there must have been three distinct blows ; the first wounds must have been inflicted from behind ; the other wounds are on the left side of the head : there is human hair and blood on the bar, the hair corresponding with that of the deceased. Any one of the three first wounds were sufficient to cause death : there were no other external marks on the body ; the stick found on the prisoner could not have produced the wounds described (the prisoner here remarked that the knot had been trimmed off a bit, and that he hit him once with that waddy, and no more, and he lent the knife to the little girl to peel a peach, and never struck him with the iron bar.)
Constable Miles assisted Senior-constable McNeelly to arrest prisoner, who, when in custody, made a statement as follows :-"The knife I had I got from the little girl, she had it peeling peaches ; they are starving me : Freeman wanted me to go and sow potatoes, and I would not go, because I had had nothing to eat yesterday or to-day ; he attacked me with a four pronged fork : I hit him a blow on the hand with my waddy : I hit him another blow, and he fell ; I then went away."'
Mary Ann. wife of deceased, said she was in the kitchen underneath the granary, on the 22nd instant, and heard a footstep ; .she thought at first that it was her grand-daughter, but it was too heavy for her so she then went out to go up to the granary, and she met her grand-child coming down ; she told her that uncle Robert had beaten her grand-father ; the prisoner was then present ; when she got up she met her brother (the prisoner) ; she passed him by;he never spoke, but had something in his hand; she afterwards heard him say as he pulled, up his trousers, " You b-------, I'll learn you to hit me " : she went to deceased and lifted him up, and asked him to speak one word to her, but his jaw had dropped, and he appeared quite lifeless ; she did not see prisoner from that time until now; she never knew prisoner to have any ill eeling towards her husband, or to be afraid of him ; this appeared to be a row upon the spur of the moment : for 20 years her brother has been wrong in the head, but they always considered him harmless, unless he was vexed; she knew prisoner was in the loft, as she had previously called to him to come and peel the potatoes, which he invariably did ; he answered her, but did not come ; prisoner has slept in a bed alongside the window ever since the " big flood " ; when at home prisoner would scarcely ever speak to any one.
His Worship delivered the following verdict : " That deceased met his death by being wilfully murdered on the 22nd day of February, 1881, at Agness Banks, by Robert Williams."
Prisoner was then committed to take his trial at the Central Criminal Court, to be held at Sydney, on the 9th May next.
Upon leaving the room Mrs. Freeman shook hands with the prisoner, and bade him good-bye. Some relations who were present also shook hands with the prisoner, and bade him good-bye.
The deceased was conveyed to the Richmond Cemetery, whilst the enquiry was going on, and was followed to his grave by a large concourse of people.

Source: The Australian, Windsor, Richmond and Hawkesbury Advertiser 26 Feb 1881

Benjamin Richards

INCLUDED in the sum of £3924, paid as probate duty last week, £3069 came from the estate of the late Mr. Benjamin Rich ards, who died at his late residence, " Kamilaroi," Richmond, on March 5. The will was dated February 22, 1896, and by it testator bequeathed the whole of his estate, valued at £61,390, and which consists mainly of property situate in the Counties of Cumberland, Northumberland, and the Hunter, to members of his family.

Source: Windsor and Richmond Gazette 10 Sep 1898


Horse Breeder

In 1837 opened a butchers shop at Richmond. Founded the Riverstone Meat Co. in 1881


The Late Benjamin Richards.
The desire to make some further remarks about the death of the grand old pioneer cattle-dealer is very strong in me. Such a lot of kind, nice things have been said abouti him.
Only a few days before his death I was at Bengalla, the home of Mr. R. T. Keys, in the Valley of the Hunter. There I saw a picture of old Mr. Richards, done by a Sydney photographer, and Mr. Keys said things about Mr. Richards — who was not then dead — that gave me a thrill of pride for knowing the old man. Mr. Keys knew Mr. Richards not in a casual way, but as an old acquaintance and friend. He had bought the cattle off Bengalla for the last 25 years, and it. seems to me that Mr. Keys won't feel offended if I quote his own words. He said, ' I have grown up respecting and honouring him as my father did before me, and as everyone, far and wide, in the Valley of the does He paid away in this district hundreds of thousands of pounds for stock, and through it all, for half a century, kepi his name as straight as a gun-barrel.' Those are strong words from a man like Mr. Keys, but they are echoed by thousands of others, who knew the old man as well. All I'm sorry for now is that I didn't get the chance to yarn with Mr. Richards before he died, and write down his recollections of the stock trade, as it was in his early days. We had arranged — he and I — to do that, but the last two years of my life have been very busy — and successful — ones, and the time never came, and now it's too late. Never mind, perhaps — ' We shall meet and greet in closing ranks In Time's declining sun, When the bugles of God shall sound recall, And the battle of life be won.'
Bing : ' Yes ; that's old Spriggins. Half-a-dozen doctors have given him up at various times daring his life.' Win» : ' What was the matter with him?" He wouldn't pay his bill.'

Source: Western Mail (Perth) 11 Mar 1898


SYDNEY, March 6.
Mr. Benjamin Richards, the head of tho Riverstone Meat Company, died on Saturday afternoon at his residence, Kamilaroi, ' Richmond, in his 8lst year. He had been identified «with pastoral pursuits all his life, and was universally esteemed.  

Source: The Sydney Stock and Station Journal 15 Mar 1898


37. Charlotte Eather Williams

Charlotte and Peter were second cousins