= o I
> ) ^
FROM ITS FOUNDATION TO THE
YEAR OF ITS JUBILEE.
OF ALL THE PRINCIPAL EVENTS OF INTEREST
UP TO DATE.
"MEMORIES OF NEW ZEALAND LIFE," "CITIES OF THE WORLD,"
'GEORGE FIFE ANGAS, FATHER AND FOUNDER OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA," ETC.
WITH TWO MAPS.
SAMPSON LOW, MAESTON & COMPANY
jt. Dungtan'g ?|ougc,
FETTER LANE, FLEET STREET, E.C.
[AM rights reserved.]
IT was the lifelong wish of Mr. George Fife Angas,
one of the Fathers and Founders of South Australia,
that a History of the Colony of his adoption, and
which he was mainly instrumental in establishing,
should be written. To this end he collected a vast
number of documents from all available sources, and for
many years employed a secretary to set them in order,
hoping some day to write the History himself. But that
day never came, and in 1879 Mr. Angas passed away.
Among his papers several were found that showed how
intensely keen his desire was that a full and compre-
hensive History, giving the story of the rise and
progress of the colony, should be written. His son,
the Hon. J. H. Angas, Member of the Legislative
Council of South Australia, determined that the wish
should be fulfilled, and kindly placed in my hands the
whole of the valuable and voluminous papers. Of this
material I have availed myself freely, and I have also
drawn from Memoirs, Diaries, Travels, Parliamentary
Debates, as well as from the Colonial Newspapers.
For the sake of easy reference, I have divided the
work into chapters dealing with the successive Ad-
i. a 3
ministrations of the various Governors, and have given
fuller detail in the earlier than in the later chapters.
A special feature is the " Chronological Summary of
Events," divided in like manner under the Administra-
tion of each Governor; and it is suggested that, after
reading a chapter of the History, the corresponding
portion of the Summary may be glanced through with
advantage. It has been impossible to verify every
date, the source from which a fact has been gleaned
having perhaps contained only vague phrases, such as
" recently " or " a short time since," in which case an
approximate date has been given. Neither has it been
possible to include every event of interest, and therefore
those only have been chosen which appeared to me best
worth recording, as marking progressive stages in the
development of the colony. The Summary cannot
fail to prove of interest to colonists, as it will keep
alive the memory of events in which many of them
were personally concerned, while the Obituary notices
will recall the names and deeds of men and women
who, like themselves, have been the " Makers " of the
I have to express my very hearty thanks to the
Hon. J. H. Angas for his untiring assistance during
the whole period covered in the preparation of this
work. I also gladly acknowledge my indebtedness to
the columns of the South Australian Register, to the
valuable library of the Eoyal Colonial Institute, and
to the kindness and courtesy of Mr. J. S. O'Halloran,
the Secretary to the Institute.
ST. AUBYNS, SllOETLANDS, KENT.
CONTENTS OF VOL. I.
Matthew Flinders and George Bass. Bass's Straits. The/-
vestiyat<<r. Discoveries of Flinders. Lincolnshire Names.
A Missing Cutter. Fate of Thistle and Taylor.
Spencer's Gulf. Kangaroo Island. Gulf of St. Vincent.
Encounter Bay. Le Geographe and M. Baudin.
Le Naturaliste and M. Peron. Circumnavigation of
Australia. Flinders sails for England in Colonial Cutter.
Imprisoned at Mauritius. Conduct of M. Peron.
Death of Flinders. Minor Explorers. Captain Sturt
and the Murray River. Confirms Discoveries of Flinders.
Suffering and Courage. Captain Barker. Ascent of
Mount Lofty. Murder of Captain Barker. The Future
Site of Adelaide ... ... ... ... ... 1
ATTEMPTS TO FOUND A COLONY.
How Colonial Questions became popular. Edward Gibbon
Wakefield. New Principles in Colonization. The Colon-
ization Society. Mr. Gouger and Colonel Torrens draw
up a Scheme. Lord Goderich annihilates it. The Error
of asjxing too much or too little. Further Schemes.
Official Rebuffs. The South Australian Association.
Chartered Colony v. Crown Colony. Leading Features
of the South Australian Act. Stringent Provisions. A
Difficult Problem and how it was solved 10
HOW THE COLONY WAS FOUNDED.
Mr. George Fife Angas. Necessity for a Joint Stock Com-
pany. Purchase of the stipulated 35,000 worth of Land.
Raising the Guarantee Sum of 20,000. Formation of
the South Australian Company. Objects contemplated.
Fleet of the South Australian Company. Choice of a
Governor. Colonel Charles James Napier. .Money and
Troops. Captain J. Hindmarsh. His Remarkable. Career.
First Colonial Officers and their Salaries. H.M.S.
Buffalo. Colonel Light and his Instructions. The
Founders of South Australia ... 34
THE PIONEER SETTLERS.
Arrival of Pioneer Vessels. " Governor " Walker. Mr.
Samuel Stephens. Kingscote, Kangaroo Island. Colonel
Light and the Survey Staff. Examination of St
Vincent's Gulf and Spencer's Gulf. First Contact with
Natives. Holdfast Bay. Lost in the Bush. Removal of
Settlers from Kangaroo Island. Captain Light decides
against Shores of Port Lincoln for Site of Capital.
Arrival of Governor Hindmarsh. Proclamation of the
Colony. First Banquet in South Australia. The
"Makers" of the Colony ... ... ... ... 47
ADMINISTRATION OP CAPTAIN HINDMARSH.
DECEMBER 28TH, 1836 JULY UTH, 1838.
The Governor and the Resident Commissioner. 'Site of the
Capital. Discussions thereon. Appeal to the Board of
Commissioners. Selections of Land. First Land Boom.
Removal of Settlers from Kangaroo Island. Hard
Work and Poor Pay. Delay in the Surveys. Too Rapid
Immigration and its Consequences. Harbour proclaimed
a Free Port. First Buildings in Adelaide. Operations of
the South Australian Company. The First Bank. The
Company's Land. Rise of Religious Institutions.
Schools and Schoolmasters. The Aborigines ; Origin,
Manners, and Customs. Protector of Aborigines. Early
Pastoral Pursuits. Overland Arrivals of Stock. First
General Gaol Delivery. Newspapers. Recall of Captain
Hindrnarsh. Interim Administration of Mr. G. M.
Stephens. 'Tribute to the Pioneer Colonists .,. .., 61
ADMINISTRATION OF COLONEL GAWLER.
OCTOBER HTH, 1838 MAY lOrn, 1841.
Offices of Governor and Resident Commissioner combined.
Difficulties of Colonel Gawler's Position. Financial Em-
barrassments. Resignation of Colonel Light and the
Survey Staff. Death of Colonel Light. Rapid Immigra-
tion and Unemployed Labour. Erection of Public
Buildings. Special Surveys. Explorations. Mr. E. J.
Eyre's Attempt to open up Overland Route to Western
Australia. A Story of Heroism. Murder of John Baxter.
Board of South Australian Commissioners disbanded.
Formation of South Australian Society. The " Com-
pany's " Road to the Port. McLaren Wharf. Bush-
rangers. Massacres by Natives. Treatment and Punish-
ment of Criminal Aborigines. Missionaries. Question
of Colonial Chaplains. Arrival of Germans. A Story
of Religious Persecution. Pastor Kavel. Fruits and
Vegetables. Prosperity. A Coming Storm. Colonel
Gawler's Bills dishonoured. A Critical Time. Colonel
Gawler's Defence. His Recall. Universal Bankruptcy
in Colony ... ... ... ... ... 107
ADMINISTRATION OP CAPTAIN GEORGE GREY.
MAY lOrn, 1841 OCTOBER 26iH, 1845.
The Financial Crisis. Views of Mr. G. F. Angas thereon.
South Australia a Crown Colony. The Governor and
the Imperial Government. Errors of the Commissioners.
Retrenchment. Unemployed Immigrants. Agitation.
Reports of Select Committee of House of Commons.
A Loan guaranteed. Colonial Creditors. Outrages by
Natives. Mr. E. J. Eyre. Native Schools. A Tide of
Commercial Misfortune. Universal Bankruptcy. Its
Causes. Governor Grey's Bills dishonoured. Serious
Consequences. New Waste Lands Act. Act for Better
Government of South Australia. Signs of Improvement.
Ridley^ Reaping Machine. Mineral Wealth. Mr.
Menge". Kapunda Copper Mine. Explorations. Captain
Stnrt. Mr. Drake. Ecclesiastical Affairs. Convictism.
Bush Fires. Burra-Burra Copper Mine. Port Ade-
laide a Free Port, Popularity of Sir George Grey.
Eulogies ... ... ... ... ... 150
ADMINISTRATION OF MAJOR ROBE.
OCTOBER 25rH, 1845 AUGUST 12TH, 1848.
A Tory of the Tories. A Bad Beginning. A Royalty on
Minerals proposed. Public Excitement thereon. Mr.
W. E. Gladstone on the Position of Colonial Governors.
Import Duty on Corn. Canada and South Australia.
Imposition of Royalty on Minerals. Specimen of South
Australian Oratory. Historical Scene in Legislative
Council. Unpopularity of the Governor. State Aid to
Religion. Political Dissenters. League for the Main-
tenance of Religious Freedom. State Aid granted.
Return of Captain Sturt from Interior. Geological
Observations of the Governor. Explorations of Mr. J. A.
Horrocks. Education Bill. Steam Communication with
England. Arrival of Dr. Short, Bishop of Adelaide ... 208
ADMINISTRATION OF SIR HENRY EDWARD FOX YOUNG.
AUGUST, 1848 DECEMBER, 1854.
Antecedents. Suspension of Royalties on Minerals. Irish
Orphans. A Policy of Progress. Municipal Corporation
for Adelaide. A New Constitution. Federation pro-
posed and rejected. The " Political Association." Uni-
versal Suffrage and the Ballot. A Lost Constitution.
Elections to New Legislative Council. Statistics. State
Aid to Religion permanently abolished. Education. City
and Port Railway Bill. Pensions. Californian Gold.
Anti-Transportation League. The Victorian Gold-fields.
Exodus from South Australia. State of Adelaide and
Suburbs. A Drain on the Banks. Proposed Assay of
Gold into Stamped Ingots. The Bullion Act. Govern-
ment Assay Office opened. Mr. Tolmer and the Over-
land Gold Escort. Exciting Adventures. Gold at
Echunga. Increased Cost of Living. Navigation of the
Murray. Captain Cadell. The Governor explores the
Murray. The " Murray Hundreds." Dreams that never
came true. A Parliament for South Australia proposed.
Opinions on a Nominee Upper House. A Civil List Bill.
Establishment of District Councils. Roads and Rail-
ways. Defence of the Colony. Military Ardour ... 23G
ADMINISTRATION OF SIR RICHARD GRAVES MACDONNELL.
JUNE, 1855 MARCH, 1862.
Antecedents of Sir R. G. MacDonnell. Unemployed Irish
Female Immigrants. An Amusing Incident. The Par-
liament Bill. Election Riots. Opening of the New
Legislative Council. Depression in Trade. Retrench-
ment and the Civil Service. A Mania for Select Com-
mittees. Adelaide Waterworks and Drainage. New
Constitution Act. Ballot and Universal Suffrage. The
First South Australian Parliament. A Noble Record.
Questions of Privilege. Originating Money Bills.
Frequent Changes in Ministry. Torrens' Real Property
Act. Mr. Justice Boothby. Australian Federation.
Poll Tax on Chinese. Colony attains its Majority.
Assessment on Stock. -Free Immigration. The Political
Association. The Destitute Asylum. Labour Tests.
The Working Men's Association. Defences of the Colony.
Wreck of the Admella. A Terrible Week. Political
Parties. Ministerial Programmes. Archdeacon Hale
and the Aborigines. Poonindie. Mr. G. F. Angas and
Missions to Natives. The Great Murray Railway Scheme.
Explorations. Sir R. G. MacDonnell on the Murray.
Mr. B. H. Babbage. A Fearful Death. Mr. Stephen
Hack. Major Warburton. John McDouall Stuart.
Journeys to the Interior. Mining Discoveries. Yorke's
Peninsula. Wallaroo and Moonta. A Mining Mania.
South Australian Wines. A Review of Six Years ... 289
ADMINISTRATION OF SIR DOMINICK DALY.
MAECH, 1862 FEBRUARY, 1868.
Coming and Departing Guests. An Irish Gentleman. War-
like Times. Volunteering. Explorations. McKiulay.
Burke and Wills. Return of J. M. Stuart after crossing
and recrossing the Continent. A Great Ovation. Geo-
logical Survey by Mr. Hargreaves. " No Man's Land."-
Ministerial Difficulties. The English Mail Service.
An Intercolonial Conference. " No Confidence " Motions.
Retirement of M.P.'s. Red Rust in Wheat. Party
Spirit. The Northern Territory. A Terrible Responsi-
bility. Waste Lands in North Australia. A Survey
Expedition. Mr. B. T. Finniss Government Resident.
A Pioneer Expedition. Misunderstandings. Recall of
Mr. Finnis. Mr. G. W. Goyder sent out. The
Squatter Question. Revaluations of Land. Unpre-
cedented Drought. Loss of Stock. Visit of H.R.H. the
Duke of Edinburgh. A Round of Gaieties. Attempted
Assassination of the Duke of Edinburgh at Sydney.
Death of Sir Dominick Daly. Funeral. Review of his
Administration ... ... ... ... 354
Matthew Flinders and George Bass. Bass's Straits. The Investi-
gator. Discoveries of Flinders. Lincolnshire Names. A
missing Cutter. Fate of Thistle and Taylor. Spencer's Gulf.
Kangaroo Island. Gulf of St. Vincent. Encounter Bay.
Le Geographe and M. Baudin. Le Naturaliste and M. Peron.
Circumnavigation of Australia. Flinders sails for England in
Colonial Cutter. Imprisoned at Mauritius. Conduct of M.
Peron. Death of Flinders. Minor Explorers. Captain Sturt
and the Murray River. Confirms discoveries of Flinders.
Suffering and Courage. Captain Barker. Ascent of Mount
Lofty. Murder of Captain Barker. The Future Site of
THE first authenticated discovery of Australia by a
European is believed to have been made by Manoel
Godinho de Eredia, a Portuguese, in 1601. Five years
later, Louis de Torres, a Spaniard, passed through the
Straits that still bear his name. In 1609 Be Quiros,
also a Spaniard, saw the land and is said to have called
it Australia. Then followed several Dutch exploratory
expeditions, and in 1664 the island-continent was
named New Holland by the Dutch Government.
VOL. I. B
2 THE HISTORY OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA. [CHAP. I.
Dampier, in 1686, is supposed to have been the first
Englishman who visited Terra Australis, as it was also
called. In 1770 Captain Cook carefully explored the
east coast, gave names to several localities, and took
possession of the country for Great Britain.
Before the commencement of the present century,
Bligh, Edwards, Portlock, Bampton, Alt, Vancouver,
Furneaux, and others had visited various parts of the
coast, but there were still 250 leagues of the Southern
and Western seaboard marked on the maps as the " Un-
known Coast." The honour of filling up this blank in
the chart of the Great South Land is due to Matthew
In August, 1794, Captain John Hunter set sail in the
Reliance for the then newly formed penal settlement
at Port Jackson, to succeed the first Governor, Captain
Phillip. There were on board the vessel two daring
young men panting for adventurous exploration George
Bass, surgeon, and Matthew Flinders, midshipman.
Soon after arrival at Sydney some scope was given to
their ambition ; they launched a little boat, eight feet
long, named the Tom Thumb, and with no other crew
than a small boy they sailed across Botany Bay and
ascended twenty miles further up George's Eiver than
had been previously reached. At another time in the
same boat they explored the Illawarra coast. After
sundry trips, taken together or separately, during one of
which Mr. Bass had observed a supposed inlet between
Van Diemen's Land and the mainland, the Governor
gave his consent to the proper fitting out of a boat
expedition for further explorations ; and Flinders and
Bass set sail in the Norfolk, a deck-built boat of twenty-
five tons, with a crew of eight men. As a result of this
voyage, Van Diemen's Land was proved to be an island
separated from the mainland by a strait ever since
known as Bass's Strait.
In 1800 Flinders returned to England in the Reliance,
and so successfully urged upon the Government the
importance of prosecuting the survey of the Unknown
Coast, that an expedition was at once fitted out, a war-
1802.] MATTHEW FLINDERS. 3
vessel, the Xenophon, renamed the Investigator on account
of the service in which she was to be employed, being
set apart for the purpose, and Flinders was promoted
to the rank of Commander. Every care was taken in the
outfit, and besides the provision made by Government,
the Honourable East India Company gave the sum of
600 for any additional necessities. The crew was
composed of picked men ; amongst the midshipmen was
Mr. (afterwards Sir) John Franklin, the great Arctic
navigator, and attached to the scientific staff was Eobert
Brown, the able botanist, and William Westall, a
celebrated landscape painter.*
Owing to the war between France and England then
in progress, a passport was obtained from the French
Government ensuring the expedition from molestation
by any of the armed ships of the enemy.
The Investigator arrived off Cape Leeuwin (or Lioness,
so named after a Dutch vessel that had made the head-
land in 1622) on the 6th of December, 1801, and after
proceeding to King George's Sound to refit, Captain
Flinders set forth on his voyage of discovery. The
map of South Australia still marks the course of his
route. Fowler's Bay was named after his first lieu-
tenant; Streaky Bay on account of the colour of the
water ; Smoky Bay from the smoke of bush fires ;
Denial Bay because of its proximity to St. Peter's
Island ; Investigator's Group, one of which was called
Flinders' Island, after the second lieutenant (the
captain's brother), and Coffin Bay named after Vice-
Admiral Sir Isaac Coffin.
On the 20th of February, 1802, Flinders arrived at
an inlet since known as Sleaford Bay. He was a
Lincolnshire man, and this was one of a series of places
he named after spots in his well-loved native county.
At Sleaford Bay he found that the coast took a sudden
turn, trending to the north, but that no land was visible
to the north-east, from which quarter a strong tide was
setting in. This gave rise to many wild conjectures.
* Westall's original sketches are now in the library of the Royal
Colonial Institute, London.
4 THE HISTORY OP SOUTH AUSTRALIA. [CHAP. I.
" Large rivers, deep inlets, inland seas, and passages into
the Gulf of Carpentaria," says Flinders, " were terms
frequently used in our conversations of this evening,
and the prospect of making an interesting discovery
inspired new life into every man in the ship." Next
morning Flinders went on shore, accompanied by Mr.
Thistle, the mate, and satisfied himself of the insularity
of the land. Soon after this a cutter was sent on shore
in charge of Mr. Thistle with a midshipman named
Taylor and others, to search for an anchorage and water.
It was a fatal voyage. For a long time the little boat
had been watched sailing hither and thither in her
search, and towards dusk she was seen returning from
the land. Then suddenly she was lost to sight, and
Lieutenant Fowler went in a boat with a lantern to
ascertain the cause. Two hours passed without any
tidings. A gun was then fired, and Lieutenant Fowler
returned soon afterwards, but alone. Near the situation
where the cutter had been last seen he met with so
strong a rippling of tide that he himself narrowly
escaped being capsized, and there was reason to fear
that this was what had actually happened to Mr.
Thistle and his companions. Had there been daylight,
some or all of the crew might 4iave been saved,
although only two out of the eight were good swimmers.
But the tide was running strong, the night was pitchy
dark, and hope was abandoned.
Next morning the missing cutter was found bottom
upwards, and although most careful and diligent search
was made in every direction, not a trace was ever dis-
covered of any of the crew. The sight of a large number
of sharks in the immediate neighbourhood furnished a
horrible suggestion of their fate.
Flinders called the island on which he had landed
Thistle Island, and caused an inscription to be engraved
on a sheet of copper, and set up on a post at the head
of the little inlet, which in commemoration of the sad
event he named Memory Cove ; the adjacent headland
he called Cape Catastrophe, and the surrounding islands
Grindal, Hopkins, Williams, Taylor, after men lost in
1802.] FLINDERS' EXPLORATIONS. 5
the cutter. When all attempts to find any survivor of
the missing boat's crew had proved ineffectual, Flinders
entered a magnificent harbour, Port Lincoln, where he
determined to refit and take in water. Almost every
place in this neighbourhood he najned after localities
familiar to him in Lincolnshire. Thus the bay, an island,
and a point of land bore the name Boston ; Cape Don-
nington commemorated his native village ; Louth Bay,
Spalding Cove, Kirton Point, Stamford Hill, Eeevesby,
Sibsey, Grantham and Spilsby Islands, Sleaford Bay
and Mere all memorialize more or less the county of
,, f J
On the 6th of March he left Port Lincoln and pro-
ceeded northwards. ' A cluster of islands was named
after Sir Joseph Banks, whose good offices with the
Admiralty had procured the equipment of the expedi-
tion ; Barn Hill, Mount Young, Middle Mount, Point
Lowly, Mount Brown, Mount Arden, and other places
further marked the course of his explorations, while the
whole range, of which these mountains formed a part,
was honoured with the name of Flinders himself.
The great gulf he was exploring pursued a northerly
direction, and Flinders entertained a strong hope that
a channel would be found by which he could reach the
Gulf of Carpentaria. Soon, however, the land began to
lose its bold appearance, and eventually the gulf was
found to terminate in desolate mud flats. On the return
of the Investigator on the east side of the gulf two
capes were named Points Eiley and Pearce, after two
gentlemen in the Admiralty, and on the 19th of February
he entered a bay and named it after the Earl of Hard-
wicke. On the following day he was again at the head
of the gulf named Spencer's Gulf, after Earl Spencer
who was First Lord of the Admiralty at the time the
expedition of the Investigator was determined upon.
The eastern point of land he called Cape Spencer, and
three islands near, the Althorpes.
Land was now seen from south to south-west, but
whether it was an island or part of the continent was
as uncertain as whether the wide opening seen at the
6 THE HISTORY OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA. [CHAP. I.
same time was an inlet or a strait. Overtaken in a
storm, Flinders stood across to the land, and, after
rounding the headland (named Point Marsden, after
the Second Secretary of the Admiralty), a bay was found
beyond offering good shelter, and here they anchored,
naming it Nepean Bay, after Sir E. Nepean, First
Secretary of the Admiralty.
On the 22nd Flinders went ashore, and found a number
of dark-brown kangaroos feeding beside a wood. " It
would be difficult to guess how many kangaroos were
seen," he wrote, "but I killed ten; the rest of the
party made up the number to thirty-one taken on board
in the course of the day, the least of them weighing
69 and the largest 125 pounds. ... I scrambled with
difficulty through the brushwood and over fallen trees
to reach the higher land with the surveying instru-
ments, but the thickness and height of the wood
prevented anything else from being distinguished.
There was little doubt, however, that this extensive
piece of land was separated from the continent, for
the extraordinary tameness of the kangaroos, and the
presence of seals upon the shore, concurred with the
absence of all traces of men to show that it was not
inhabited. . . . The whole ship's company," he adds,
" was employed this afternoon in skinning and cleaning
the kangaroos, and a delightful regale they afforded
after four months' privation from almost any fresh
provisions. Half a hundredweight of heads, fore-
quarters, and tails were stewed down into soup for
dinner on this and the succeeding days, and as much
steaks given, moreover, to both officers and men as they
could consume by day and by night. In gratitude for
so seasonable a supply I named the southern land
Kangaroo Island." And here, as we shall presently
see, the first settlers in South Australia landed in 1836.
While off Kangaroo Island the captain named the