Who Were They?

This site will be developed to record biographical Information about deceased people who have had places, landmarks, memorials, parks, lookouts, etc. named after them (e.g. Mary Brown Gardens, Joe Blow Grandstand or John Smith Park). Many places are named in recognition of the good works, heroic actions and even infamous actions of people within the community. However, after a couple of generations the memory of who these people were is often lost. The aim is to preserve this information.

If you can provide any details plus hopefully a photo of the place (showing the name) and what you know about the individual, please email it and it will be placed on the site. Please indicate which country is involved. A photo of the person, if available, can also be displayed. Below is a sample of what is envisaged.

John Owen

Name Index

HORGAN, Michael Daniel
NEWMAN, (Major) Charles
WARD, Frederick Wordsworth

Place Index

Horgan Walk, in Horgan Park, Jerilderie, NSW, Australia
Newman Rd, Templestowe, Vic, Australia
Partridge Creek, Port Macquarie, NSW, Australia
Thunderbolt's Way, NSW, Australia

Thunderbolts Way is a 290-kilometre New South Wales country road linking Gloucester to Walcha (where it crosses the Oxley Highway), Uralla, where it very briefly joins the New England Highway and then to Copes Creek, 16 km south of the Gwydir Highway intersection at Inverell.

F rederick Wordsworth Ward (15 May 1833 25 May 1870) was born at Wilberforce, New South Wales. His mother was Sarah Ward, daughter of Michael Ward, a convict. Frederick became a groom and horse breaker by the age of 20.

In 1856 Ward became involved in a scheme to sell 75 stolen horses at Windsor and was arrested, leading to a sentence of ten years with hard labour at Cockatoo Island. He was released after four years and given a ticket of leave to his mother's property at Cooyal near Mudgee in 1860. After his release, he followed Mary Ann Bugg to Stroud where he married her in 1860 and settled down, until he arrived late for monthly muster at Mudgee a few days before his first child was born and was accused of stealing two shoes and the horse he rode in on. He was sent back to prison to finish his sentence plus a further four years for horse stealing.

On 11 September 1863 he escaped with the help of Mary Ann Bugg, who swam to Cockatoo Island, carrying with her tools to help Ward escape. Ward, Bugg and another prisoner, Fred Britten, made a daring swim for freedom and the couple soon became notorious bushrangers, committing crimes ranging from highway robbery to horse stealing and earning Ward the name Captain Thunderbolt. They operated widely across the Hunter Valley-Tamworth-New England region from 1864 to 1870. On one occasion they even rode as far west as Bourke. During this time, Ward and Mary Ann Bugg managed to have four children.

It is claimed in nearly every book about Thunderbolt that, throughout his career, he never shot at anyone, including the police. However what is not so well known is the reason for this. Thunderbolt's wife, Mary Ann Bugg, by her aboriginal heritage, had a total hatred of guns due to the way so many of her people had been murdered by the white population of the time. During her time with Thunderbolt she instilled in him this same total hatred of guns and of shooting at people.

On 25 May 1870, it is alleged by authors such as Bob Cummins in his book Thunderbolt that Ward was shot and killed near Uralla by Constable Alexander Walker during a highway robbery. However, many Uralla locals claim that it was his uncle, William (Harry) Ward, who was killed at this time and not Fred Ward.

Source : Wikipedia

Submitted by : John Owen

Partridge Creek is located west of Port Macquarie, NSW on what is now known as the Oxley Highway. It flows through land which Stephen Partridge originally received as a grant and which was known as "Thrumster" which name is now applied to the district generally.

S tephen Partridge was born in January 1793 in Armitage (later known as Hermitage), Dorset. His early training was as a carpenter but in 1811 he enlisted in the British Army and saw service at Kingsbridge, Plymouth, Jersey and the Isle of Wight. In 1812 he joined the main body of the Regiment and in 1813 he was stationed on board the ship "General Hewitt" and was part of the military detail on that ship when it arrived in Sydney on 7 February 1814. From 1816 his skill as a carpenter along with an entrepreneurial spirit allowed him to supplement his Army pay and made his superiors take notice of him, such that records show him receiving payments for 'repairing carts damaged during Government expeditions by Military Detachment in search of absconding prisoners' and also for 'extensive work on Sydney Hospital'.

He was part of the parties led by John Oxley in the early exploration of New South Wales. On 5 September 1818 he was appointed Overseer of His Majesty's lumber yards, sawyers and carpenters in Sydney. Regular Police Funds payments to Stephen are noted in Governor Macquarie's diary and also in "The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser" much of it for work at Sydney Hospital. He held this position for just over two and a half years. He commenced duties in his new appointment as Superintendant of Convicts and Public Works in Port Macquarie, NSW and was part of the original party which established the penal settlement on 21 April 1821. He served under every Commandant. When Port Macquarie ceased being a penal settlement and was opened to the general public, he resigned his position and established the first inn in the town, known as "The New Inn". It took in guests as well as selling alcohol. Stephen held the licence for three years but lost it on 16 June 1833 when a Bench of Magistrates refused to renew it as they were 'not satisfied as to his moral character'. The details on how this judgement was arrived at were not revealed.

On 30 October 1830, Governor DARLING granted him 640 acres later to be known as "Thrumpster", located on the Oxley Highway, 10 kilometres west of Port Macquarie. He is known to have traded in a number of parcels of land in the district. The creek which was named after him flows through this land.

On 20 November 1835 he was appointed a special constable in Port Macquarie at a salary of 80 per annum. In March 1836 he was again appointed Superintendent of Convicts which position he held until the penal establishment closed in 1846. He requested compensation for the abolition of his office and was awarded a gratuity of 2 years salary of 88. He retired as a Constable in 1862 and lived out his days in the town until he died on 18 July 1878. He was buried in what is now known as The Historic Cemetery but the tomb was destroyed by vandals toward the end of the 20th Century.

More information about Stephen can be found on this page and on the links from that page.

Submitted by : John Owen

Major Charles Newman was one of the first settlers on the fertile flats along the Yarra River when he purchased 640 acres on what is now known as Newmans Road, Templestowe. He held a pastoral lease over 10,000 acres through Templestowe, Warrandyte and East Doncaster where he grazed sheep, cattle and bred horses.

C harles Newman was born in the village of Cranborne, County of Dorset, England on the 21 December 1783. At the age of 17, in 1801 he was nominated as a cadet for the Bombay Establishment of the Honorable East India Company under the sponsorship of Paul Le Mesurier, the Headmaster of Hailebury College. This college was the training facility for the civil and military officers, who were employed by the company in its virtual monopoly of the East India trade and the Administration of India such as it was in those days. Charles Newman was trained at the college for a further five years before entering the Madras Military Establishment in 1806. During the next 30 years he attained the rank of Major commanding the 51st Regiment Bengal Native Infantry.

As his sight had degraded, he retired from the army on the 10 September 1834 and with his family and two step-daughters migrated to the penal colony of Van Diemans Land (VDL), Tasmania, Australia. The Newman family arrived at Hobart on the "Princess Victoria" on the 10 November 1834. He expected to get a grant of land in VDL only to find out that free grants of land had been abolished. He procured a job supervising convict labour at Pontville where there was a Garrison and Barracks. He travelled to Port Phillip Bay in about 1837. Hearing that land was selling quickly in the newly formed town of Melbourne he followed the Yarra River on the north side from Heidelberg. Fertile flats along the creek attracted his eye and he purchased a large area of land that totalled 640 acres on what is now known as Newmans Road, Templestowe. He held a pastoral lease on 10,000 acres through Templestowe, Warrandyte and East Doncaster where he grazed sheep, cattle and bred horses.

Much has been documented about Major Newman over the years during the history of Templestowe. He had run ins with the local bushranger gang which he pursued relentlessly. The bushrangers were said to be former convicts whom he had harshly supervised in VDL. To get even they raided his farm and on one occassion led him away to the horse paddock with the intention of shooting him. His wife Catherine stepped in and demanded to go with them to the paddock. This saved his life. The bushrangers took his best horses and rode away. The second band of the bushranger gang raided his homestead shortly after this encounter and while they ransacked his home and stole priceless possessions they forced him to stick his head in a chimney while the robbery took place. Eventually the bushrangers were captured and hung in Melbourne. Most of his stolen property (military medals and artifacts) were later found hidden on a property not far away and returned to him.

Major Newman was also harsh on the local natives who constantly set fires in his paddocks and property. He insisted that his employees be armed and use their weapons against the natives. To get even for the harsh treatment a group of the local natives ascended onto his homestead armed with spears with the intent of killing him. Catherine hid him in the chimney and eventually the natives went away. He also had problems with the law and order procedures and decisions made by the magistrates in the colony. On several occasions he questioned the decisions of magistrates when things did not go the way he expected. On at least one instance he was threatened with contempt of court by the presiding benchman.

Major Charles Newman died on 12 September 1865. He was totally blind when he died. Both the Major and his wife Catherine were buried in the family crypt at Monckton located at the end of Homestead Road. Burial on private land was discouraged by the government and was finally abandoned several years later. After the area was divided into orchard lots, the Newman remains and their headstones were moved to the Templestowe Cemetery in 1910. Local history has it that the grave diggers who were supposed to relocated Major Newman's remains simply moved the headstones to Templestowe cemetery leaving the remains where they were originally buried at the entrance gates to Monckton homestead (now called Windrush).

More information about Major Newman can be found on this page.

Submitted by : Chris Horgan

In a tribute to Michael Horgan, Jerilderie Shire Council named the swimming pool park "Horgan Park" when the area was upgraded in about 1958. In 1987 "Horgan Walk" within the park was also named after him.

M ichael Daniel Horgan was a Councillor for 29 consecutive years. He began civic duties as a Councillor of the Wunnamurra Shire in 1908 and served continuously until 1918, when Wunnamurra Shire ceased to exist. He was Shire President in 1909 and 1916. He then was a Councillor from the inception of Jerilderie Shire in 1918 until 1937, being president from 1920 until 1937.

Jerilderie Shire Council in a tribute to him named the swimming pool park Horgan Park when the area was upgraded in about 1958. In 1987 Horgans Walk within the park was also named after him.

Apart from his services to the community as a Councillor for 29 years, Michael Horgan was also interested in most other organisations in Jerilderie. To name a few of these interests, he was over the years President of The Hospital Board; President and until his death, a Trustee of the Mechanics Institute; President of the Jerilderie Rifle Club and the Riverina Rifle Club Union; President of the Race Club; a Vice President of the Golf Club and was instrumental in obtaining the present club site for the purpose.

A keen rifleman, he competed at prize meetings at Anzac Range in Sydney quite regularly. His only other sporting interest was Australian Rules football, at which he performed quite creditably.

Michael Daniel Horgan died from a cancer to the throat on the 19 August 1961. His funeral was held at St. Josephs Catholic Church, Jerilderie on the following Sunday afternoon. A large gathering of Jerilderie and surrounding district residents attended. A guard of honour comprising members of the Holy Name Society and past and present Shire Councillors was formed at the Church and again at the graveside. There is a large framed picture of him in the foyer of the Jerilderie Shire Council Building.

More information about Michael Horgan can be found on this page.

Submitted by : Chris Horgan

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Updated : 19 Feb 2011