Hunter Valley Colonial Medical Practitioners

Henry W. Radford

Henry W. Radford of the 45th regiment was appointed assistant surgeon on 10 August 1815 (7).  He served in the Peninsula Wars and later in India.

In 1823 he was placed on half pay and decided to emigrate to Australia.

He arrived in Australia on the 'Greenock on 8th January 1824 with his wife Frances and son Henry as well as four year old Eliza Smith(3). Others making the voyage included Andrew Lang, Hugh Torrence and Alexander Warren.

On 15th January 1824 Henry Radford applied for a grant of 2000 acres. He stated himself to be on half pay of the 65th regiment. .....Having been placed upon the Half Pay and feeling desirous to become a settler in this Colony, I take the liberty of addressing you for the purpose of obtaining from Government the Indulgence of a grant of land and I further beg that state that should Government be pleased to assign to me two thousand acres I am prepared to accept of them in conformity to the Regulations. I have the Honor Sir, H.W. Radford, H.P. Surgeon 65th Regiment (1) The grant was confirmed in correspondence dated that same day. (2)

Before they took up residence on this grant near Patrick Plains the family resided in the lower Hunter River area.

it seems to be believe that not one prisoner in fifty in this district would have followed his example. The parties fired fourteen shots.

Convict servants assigned to Henry Radford in 1824 included:

William Walsh per John Barry (Newc) William Hickman per Recovery (Syd)
Henry Bodson per Mangles (Newc) James Hickman per Recovery (Newc)
Francis Gallagher per Minerva John Harrison per Mary (Sydney)
John Musgrove Guildford (Sydney) James Russell Earl St. Vincent (Syd)
James Burdett per John Barry (Syd) William Oram per Mangles

In the 1828 Census Henry Radford aged 38, wife Frances aged 25, Henry aged 3 and Charles age 2 are all recorded residing at Patrick Plains.(3)

In 1827/1828 the following convicts were assigned to Henry Radford at Hunter River:

William Hodgson per Asia William Johnstone per Asia
Maurice Tighe per Mangles William Maughan, (overseer)
William Oram per Mangles Margaret Russell per Midas
Cornelius Connolly per John Francis Burdett per John Barry
David Jenkins per Marquis of Hastings  

On 29th January 1829 Frances gave birth to a daughter Alicia Maria and in the church records their residence was given as Patrick Plains.(5) At this time they were residing at their estate Elderslie which had originally been a grant to Alexander Shand and can be seen on this map. Alicia married Mr. McClatchie on 11th November 1851 at Stoke Fleming, Devonshire. (8)  (Select here to see a portrait of Alicia Radford c. 1848).

On the 3rd February 1829 Henry Radford announced that he was leaving the colony. In April 1829 Elderlsie was advertised for lease....To new settlers or others requiring a temporary settlement - To be Let till June 1830, a house of four apartments, with a kitchen outside, five acres of cultivation ground, cleared and fenced, use of stock yard, and liberty of grazing 20 head of cattle. The rent is 35 and entry may be had  immediately. Apply personally to Mr. William Brooks at Dalziel, Hunter's River, the adjoining land to that on which the house is situated. (12)

In India Henry Radford served with the 62nd Regiment.  As can be seen from the following Return of sickness, the 62nd regiment endured appalling conditions in India.

Return of the sickness in 62nd Regiment on the march from Bangalore to Masulipatam from 18 February to 15 April 1833......

The family returned to Australia on the Merope in 1834 broken in health and spirit and without their two sons who had drowned the previous year.  A son John was born in 1834 and another, Henry Wyatt Radford was born in November 1835. Henry Wyatt Radford (junior) married Lydia Sloane, daughter of David Sloane at Newcastle in 1864.

The following convicts were assigned to Henry Radford at the Hunter River in 1836/37:

John Simpson per Parmelia Henry Hall per Andromeda
Joseph Chambers per Hooghley Daniel O'Malley per Blenheim
Peter Maine per Waterloo Richard Palmer per Burrell
Edward Everson per Waterloo Christopher Pennington per Mangles

Henry Wyatt Radford (senior) died in January 1836 aged 44. In January his land at Hunter River was advertised for auction.

His death notice appeared in the Colonist - DEATH at Newcastle on Friday 15th instant - Dr. Radford arrived in the colony in the year 1824 on furlough from his Regiment in India, having married an English lady at Algoa Bay during his stay at the Cape. He obtained a grant at Hunter River but returned a year or two thereafter to India to complete his period of service. His two sons were on their way from India to the Australian College when they were both drowned in the unfortunate vessel that was lost on Amsterdam Island about 3 years ago (Lady Munro). The melancholy tidings of this calamitous visitation preyed upon Dr. R's sensitive spirit, and the climate of India undermined his robust constitution, so that on coming to the colony, after having at length completed the regular period of service in India, he only came to spend the remainder of his days in sickness and to sink prematurely into the grave. Dr. R. died sincerely regretted by his numerous friends in NSW but we are happy to add he has left his widow and family in comparative independence. -  28 January 1836.

At the time of his death Henry Radford had acquired three estates in the Hunter - Elderslie, Radfordslie and Ravenfield. (9)  Elderslie was originally a 2000 acre grant to Alexander Shand made in 1823. When he departed the colony in May 1824, Alexander Shand gave his address as Eldersly, Hunter's River.  (6)

Henry Radford's widow Frances Maria (nee Biddulph) married Alexander Brodie Sparke in 1840. Read the following excerpt from St. George: Rockdale, Kogarah, Hurstville to find out more about Frances Radford's second marriage to A.B. Sparke and the sad fate of some of Henry Radford's children.

 

St. George: Rockdale, Kogarah, Hurstville, Lawrence, Joan., Kingsclear Books Pty Ltd, 2002, p.10

 

 

(1) (NRS 899) Memorials to the Governor, 1810-1825 Item: 4/1839A Number: 795 Page: 217-8. Ancestry.com. New South Wales, Australia, Colonial Secretary's Papers, 1788-1825

(2) (NRS 937) Copies of letters sent within the Colony, 1814-1825 Item: 4/3510 Page: 183. Ancestry.com. New South Wales, Australia, Colonial Secretary's Papers, 1788-1825

(3) Ancestry.com. 1828 New South Wales, Australia Census (TNA Copy) [database on-line].

(4) Sydney Herald 21 March 1836

(5) 1826 - 1827 Book of Births Marriages and Burials Christchurch Cathedral, Newcastle University of Newcastle Flickr

(6) Sydney Gazette 6 May 1824

(7) Asiatic Journal

(8)Births, Deaths, Marriages and Obituaries . The Standard (London, England), Tuesday, November 18, 1851; Issue 8509.

(9) Radford v. Duguid & others Sydney Morning Herald 2 August 1860 - An appeal from the decision of the Primary Judge, and the question is whether the children of Henry Wyatt Radford, who have all attained majority are entitled to have the shares indicated for them respectively by their father's will conveyed and assigned to them, the widow assenting.....

(10) Dawn in the valley : the story of settlement in the Hunter River Valley to 1833 /​ W. Allan Wood.  Sydney : Wentworth Books, 1972.

(11) Cross, Joseph. Map of the River Hunter, and its branches [cartographic material] : shewing the Lands reserved thereon for Church purposes, the Locations made to Settlers, and the Settlement and part of the Lands of the Australian Agricultural Company at Port Stephens together with the Station of the Mission to the Aborigines belonging to the London Missionary Society on Lake Macquarie, New South Wales 1828. MAP NK 646.

(12) Sydney Gazette 2 April 1829

 

 

 

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