19 March 2013

Stephen Tobin- Ch:9- sister Ellen Tobin

Ellen Tobin, born 1833, was the fourth of six children of John Tobin and Elizabeth Brien of southern Tipperary, in or near Newcastle in the barony of West  Iffa and Offa. John Tobin died in Dublin in 1837 aged 37 and was buried in Glasnevin cemetery, however, his wife and children remained living  in Tipperary. The children were born between 1821 and 1836- viz. Mary b.c.1821, Catherine b.c.1823, Stephen b.1825, Ellen b.c.1832, William b.c.1833 and John b.c.1834.

Barony of West Iffa and Offa, southern Tipperary

In a deposition dated 18 January 1894 Sydney, Stephen Tobin of Tallebudgera in the Colony of Queensland but at present temporarily of Mulgoa Penrithy in the Colony of New South Wales, declared that the said Ellen Koch late of Smithfield near Cooktown in the Colony of Qld, wife of Henry Koch, died at Smithfield on or about the sixth of April 1878. The said Ellen Koch was my sister. The said Ellen Koch was married to the said Henry Koch and left no children. The said Ellen Koch was formerly married to one Fahey by whom also she had no children. (QLD State Archives, N11667, dated 15/2/94)

Ellen Tobin arrived in South Australia on 10 September 1849 aboard the ‘Elgin’ which left Liverpool on 17 May via Plymouth on 1 June.  She was 16 or 17 years of age and was one of 190 ‘Orphan’ girls, including 15 girls from Clonmel, on board.
[ref: Irish Famine Memorial Sydney- Famine Orphan Girls database- http://www.irishfaminememorial.org/orphans/, and
South Australia Passenger Lists- Early Shipping Arrivals and Immigration, by Barry Leadbeater-  http://www.familyhistorysa.info/shipping/passengerlists.html,
and, Sources 6,7(J. Fahy), 20, 30- see below].

part of the passenger list for the 'Elgin'.

Ellen Tobin married James Fahy/Fahey on 13 June 1850.
 (S.A. Reg. No. 8/201)
(Ref: Historical South Australian Marriages 1836-1856, Barry Leadbeater-

South Australian Immigration Records

James Fahy and sister Anne Fahy arrived in South Australia on 7 December 1840 aboard the ‘Birman’ from Greenock via Cork on 24 August 1840.  (Sources 2,4,7(+ w. Holland), 20- see below). James was born between 1812-1813, and sister Ann about 1814.

The Fahys were from Knockanira, Parish of Killone, 8 kms from Ennis in Co. Clare, Ireland
Anne Fahy married William Holland on 9 August 1843. He was educated and a Catholic from Lincolnshire.
(information courtesy of Fahy descendant Marilyn Corica)

The ‘Birman’, carrying 218 passengers, was one of the last of the ships to arrive under the Emigrant Labourer Free Passage Scheme, proposed by Edward Wakefield, and accepted by the Colonization Commissioners of South Australia. The scheme ended at the end of December 1840 through lack of funds. By the end of 1840, there were approximately 17,366 persons in the new colony of S.A., including 5000 labourers and their families.

This marriage was not a harmonious union. Less than a year after their marriage, the following Police Court report appeared in the South Australian Register (Adelaide), Tuesday 8 April 1851 page 3:

Police Court, Adelaide Monday 7th April
James Fahey appeared on the information of his wife, Ellen Fahey, for ill-treating her and threatening to shoot a ball through her body, on the 3rd instant.
Ellen Fahey stated that her husband for a long time past had beaten and ill-used her to such an extent that she was obliged to leave her home, which she did on the day named, for the purpose of getting a situation in Adelaide. After she left the house, her husband followed her down the road, beat her about the face and head, and threatened to kill her. He also said he would strip her naked and tie her to a tree. Before she left the house, he threatened to set fire to it about her. After his abusing her in the road, she persuaded him to come into town to see the Catholic Priest. He was not at home, and her husband then renewed his attacks, which compelled her eventually to take refuge in the Police Barracks. His conduct was not the result of drunkenness; if it had been she would willingly have forgiven him.
The prisoner could not make any answer to the complaint of his wife, but confined himself to a declaration that he was a kind husband, and that his wife had a bad heart, as was fully proved by her causing him to be half devoured with bugs and fleas in the lock-up all night.
Prosecutrix said she could produce witnesses who could confirm her statement. The prisoner was bound over in £25 to keep the peace for one year.

Ellen stated that she had left her husband because of the constant abuse and was trying to find 'a situation in Adelaide'. Whether she returned to him or carried out her threat to leave him is not known. They had no children. For poor Ellen, the beginning of her new life in this new land was a very unhappy one, having married a cruel brute of a man. She must have wondered about her decision to emigrate. 

Sometime between this incident in April 1851 and her second marriage in Sydney in December 1854, her husband James Fahy/Fahey either died (no records found) or she obtained a divorce or annulment from him, which would have been an unusual step for a Catholic, but given the circumstances, she may have been driven to it, and certainly now had the evidence she needed for grounds for divorce- "this could have been a Church Divorce which meant that the Priest could convene a Church/Ecumenical Council Court, grant a divorce or annulment and they would be free to commence new lives. The Catholic Parish was St Patricks in Adelaide." ( per Marilyn Corica).
It may be the case that he divorced her on grounds of desertion. 
Descendant of Ann Fahy (who died in 1872) has found that a James Fahy appeared in the Wallaroo Court on a drink charge in 1877 and at the time, three of his nephews were working at Wallaroo, and that this could indicate that James had remained living near his family. 

The most likely record pertaining to Ellen Fahey's arrival in Sydney, is the record of the coastal schooner the 'Almeda' which sailed up and down the east coast between Melbourne and Newcastle, arriving in Sydney in February 1853. She would have had to travel from Adelaide to Melbourne first, either, via another coastal schooner, or overland. How she afforded these trips is a mystery, given her circumstances. And where and how she found work for the year preceding her marriage is also unknown. Maybe the Catholic Church helped her, and possibly found her a position in Sydney. She probably met her second husband through the church.

(Public Record Office Victoria)

(my grateful thanks to Marilyn Corica for her invaluable information and input on the Fahys)

By 1854, Ellen was in Sydney where she found her new husband, and appears to have found happiness at last.

Ellen’s background

As outlined in Chapter 2, Ellen’s father John Tobin died when Ellen was just 4 years of age. He was a 'provisions dealer' (seller of food items) selling from a small shop in Townsend Street, Dublin at the time of his death. He was possibly selling the produce from his farm in Tipperary.
Ellen was probably born in or near the place where her brother Stephen was born, viz. Newcastle, a few miles SW of Clonmel, in the barony of West Iffa and Offa, in southern Tipperary, near the border with Co. Cork and Co. Waterford. She may have been born in the town of Clonmel. Whether the death of her mother Elizabeth Tobin nee Brien occurred before or after Ellen left Ireland for Australia is unknown, but she grew up during the period of the Great Potato Famine in the 1840’s, when Tipperary was particularly badly affected. It would appear that she was placed in the Clonmel Workhouse, possibly with her mother and two younger brothers.

Ellen’s elder sister Catherine had migrated to NSW in 1842 and was living with her husband, Timothy Guinea, on the Berry estate at Gerringong by 1848. Their eldest brother Stephen was a sergeant in the British Army and would follow his sisters to NSW in 1857, paying for his and his wife’s passage from Ireland. Stephen Tobin was highly intelligent and well educated, proving to be a valuable community leader with excellent communication skills which he used effectively with local politicians to gain valuable infrastructure for his community, even becoming an alderman representing the Gerringong/Kiama residents at one stage, and continuing his role as a community leader following his move to Tallebudgera in QLD in 1869 where he was one of the original pioneers of the area.
Historian and author of two books on the history of the area from the Nerang to the Tweed border, Robert Longhurst described Stephen Tobin as “a determined lobbyist, an articulate man who obviously had previous experience in rattling the bones of government. In a community where many settlers could not sign their names, Tobin early on assumed a commanding role.” And, “An especially literate and forthright man, Stephen Tobin figured as a prominent community leader.

So even though Ellen ended up as a pauper in the Clonmel Workhouse following the untimely death of her father, she came from a reasonably well-off family background with sizeable landholdings in the area, not from the poor peasantry.

Clonmel Workhouse

The following description gives us an idea of life in the Clonmel Workhouse and the reasons why a young girl like Ellen would grab the chance for a new life in Australia with the offer of a free passage. She had probably received favourable reports from her sister Catherine who had made the journey seven years before her.

The first Clonmel Poor Law Union workhouse was located to the west of the town on the north bank of the Suir River, in a district known as Irishtown, at the junction of Upper Irishtown and Convent Road, and was an adaptation of the existing House of Industry set up in 1811 by the Quakers as ‘a common receptacle for all descriptions of malfortunes, serving at the same time as a place of confinement for vagrants and lunatics as well as an asylum for the poor and helpless’.
(ref: Eamonn Lonergan, St Joseph’s Hospital, Clonmel: An Historical and Social Portrait, self published, 2000)

(ref: clonmelgraveyards.com/indexphp/other-stuff/clonmel-workhouse)

The Clonmel Poor Law Union was officially formed in March 1839 and was responsible for the running of the Clonmel Workhouses. Financing for the Poor Law Union was via the 'rates' or property tax collected from property owners, under the Act.
The government took  over the House of Industry in 1841 as Clonmel’s first workhouse.
The upgraded building could accommodate 600 and was declared fit for the admission of paupers on 1 January 1841 and admitted its first inmates the same day.
Margaret Rossiter wrote:
 In 1842, there were 506 inmates, classified as ‘paupers’, whose diet consisted of oatmeal, skimmed milk and potatoes, and as potatoes became scarce, bread was substituted and other items such as Indian Meal (maize) were added. By February 1847, 1,365 men, women and children were in the Clonmel Workhouse, where overcrowding had become such that Auxiliary Workhouses had to be established, one on the Quay and another in the Northgate Brewery.
In the Clonmel Workhouse, its policy was segregation and families were parted, causing much distress to parents. Whether Ellen was placed with her mother and two younger brothers is unknown.

Eamon Lonergan gives a fascinating account of life in the Clonmel workhouse, and looks at the operation and management of Clonmel’s Workhouse, which was in the hands of the Board of Guardians, appointed from amongst the country’s largest ratepayers.
The Workhouse Master and Matron took charge of the day-today management, some of whom were decent and kind, and others “disreputable and incompetent. In the first years of its operation, the workhouse seems to have been plagued by staffing problems.
The first Master of the workhouse was Edward O’Riordan who had previously been Master fo the old House of Industry. His daughter Mary became Matron. O’Riordan was forced to resign in 1842 when the unmarried inmate mother of a newborn male child revealed that O’Riordan was the father. The mother and child were also ejected from the workhouse.
In 1845, the O’Riordan’s successors, a Mr and Mrs Lumley, were dismissed after two inmates were found drunk. The next incumbents were Patrick and Catherine Ryan had a relatively brief tenure- Catherine died of fever in Feb 1847 and her husband was dismissed a month later, being considered unable to perform his duties adequately. Two further appointees both resigned after brief tenures.
The rules were strict and infringements punished. In 1847, “Biddy O’Meara was caught climbing the wall and ordered to be confined for 24 hours and have her hair cut.”. “Five boys who refused to work on the farm were given 12 lashes each.”
By November 1849, with increasing and intolerable pressures on the institution and its inmates, consideration was given to the construction of a new Workhouse.
At the end of 1850, land for a new workhouse building was leased, and the building to hold 1,200 inmates was begun in 1851.

Earl Grey’s Emigration Scheme

This was when Earl Grey’s Emigration Scheme began, and young girls from the Workhouse, some aged only 15 or 16 were shipped to Quebec and to Australia.

Ellen was selected under Earl Grey’s Famine Orphan Scheme which ran between 1848 and 1850. He was Secretary of State for the Colonies and designed the emigration program to meet the demand for domestic servants and marriageable young women, at the same time reducing overcrowding in Irish workhouses.
The young women selected under this scheme during the Famine years were from Workhouses throughout Ireland. Although some were orphans, or had lost the breadwinner of the family, while others were destitute and unable to support themselves due to their family situation. Approximately 4000 Irish female orphans under the Earl Grey Scheme made the journey between October 1848 and August 1850. While some suffered at the hands of their employees and husbands, others, such as Ellen, found happiness and prosperity. The scheme only lasted two years, as objections rose about the colony being flooded with unskilled Irish Catholic immigrants which was undesirable and a drain on the economy. The newspapers warned that most of the Belfast Irish Orphans were addicted to bad language and behaved in a mutinous manner, and that the colony would become a receptacle for thieves, juvenile bastards and prostitutes. The SA Register (Oct 25, 1848) reported “Irish orphans looked to be a tough lot”. So the scheme was brought to an end by 1850 due to such negative reactions.
and : Irish Orphan Girls, 'Barefoot And Pregnant? - Irish Famine Orphans In Australia' ISBN 0 949672 25 4

The three masted barque, 548 ton, ‘Elgin’, brought 190 female orphans from southern Ireland (Cork, Waterford and Tipperary)-- 85 from Skibbereen, 35 from Killarney, 30 from Fermoy, 25 from Lismore, and 15 from Clonmel. Reportedly, almost half of them had their period for the first time on this trip. While the age ranged from 15 to 20, the majority appear to have been aged 16 or 17. All the Irish orphans were provided with- 6 shifts, 6 pairs stockings, 2 flannel petticoats, 2 pairs shoes (not boots), and 2 gowns (one of warm material). The Board was also required by the Emigration Board to provide each Catholic girl with a Douay bible and a R.C. prayer book, and a box measuring 2 feet long 14" high and 14" wide in which to hold their allocated provisions and personal items.

The ‘Elgin’ departed from Liverpool on May 17, 1849 and made its way around the coast to Portsmouth from which it finally departed on May 31 1849 and arrived at McLaren Wharf at Port Adelaide on September 10, 1849. 
(Ref. http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/fh/passengerlists/1849elgin.htm )
Where it picked up the 190 Irish orphans is not specified, but it was possibly at Cork after the ship departed Liverpool. The Clonmel Board of Guardians reported that 'In reference to the letter of the Poor Law Commissioners... date 9 May 1849, the Board resolved to fit out 15 young girls for emigration to Australia, their names and ages are as follows.... Ellen Tobin 17...  these names and the corresponding characters are to be sent to Lt Henry R.N. without delay, the outfit of 8 of the above is already prepared and Col. Philpps and Dr Scully are in power to cause the necessary articles of dress etc to be got for the remaining 7 so as to have them ready for embarkation and to make arrangements for the conveyance of the whole party to Cork by the appointed time 24th May instant".
After the first 28 girls were selected for emigration in 1848, the Board reported on 14 April 1849 that "there are several other families in the workhouse eligible and willing to go and for whom the Guardians are satisfied to defray the expenses of outfit etc when sanctioned by the Commissioners."
On 21 April 1849, "In reference to an enquiry made by the Poor Law Commissioners as to the number of young females the Board would be willing to fit out for emigration they have caused a search to be made and find there are a considerable number in the house eligible and willing to emigrate: the number of such persons may be set down at 69. The Guardians are willing to comply with the necessary conditions to send out 60 of these persons and will commence the required preparations on being instructed to that effect by the Poor Law Commissioners." 
Only the 15 on the Elgin went to South Australia, the others chosen went to Sydney, Port Phillip or Hobart.
(Clonmel Board of Guardians Minute Books 14 May 1849 p.306-- from typescript supplied by Dr B. Taylor sometime Deputy Keeper, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland- sourced in Barefoot and Pregnant? Irish Famine Orphans in Australia, Volume 2, p.11-12, compiled by Trevor McClaughlin, pub. Genealogical Society of Victoria, 2001.)
The first 28 girls selected by the Clonmel Board of Guardians for emigration on the ship 'Roman Emperor', were sent to Dublin, the Board paying 8 shillings car and railway fare, and 13s. 6d. for the passage from Dublin to Plymouth.

Of the first shipload of 246 orphans sent to South Australia on the ‘Roman Emperor’, according to the Lieutenant Governor, all were engaged by the Colonists within 14 days from their arrival in the Colony. However, by the time of the arrival of the ‘Elgin’ in September 1849, the situation was very different, and this shipload of orphans found difficulty finding positions.

The South Australian Register reported:
September 12, 1849- The female orphans aboard the Elgin expressed themselves highly satisfied with their treatment, and the Captain (John Mann) says he has not a fault to find with the young women.
September 15, 1849- Saturday- the Office of the Children apprenticeship Board advertised that: The ‘Elgin’, with female orphans, arrived. Applicant desirous of availing themselves of their Services, are requested to attend, in person or by proxy at the Office of the Secretary, Native School, on and after Friday next, the 14th instant. It is recommended that the orphans be removed immediately after the arrangements have been made.
Signed M. Moorehouse, Secretary to the Board.
October 13, 1849- Shipping Intelligence- the ‘Elgin’ was ‘Lying in the stream’.
October 13, the Report of the Board mentioned that “.. The orphans per the Elgin arrived on the 10th September last, but are meeting with situations at a slow rate. The vessel has been nearly one month on Port, and there are at this date, 109 unhired…”
November 14, 1849- the ‘Elgin’ was “loading for London”.
December 29, 1849- the ‘Elgin’ was still in Port Adelaide awaiting loading. Most of this delay was attributable to the delay in finding places for the orphans.

Ellen Tobin’s Second Marriage

By 1854, Ellen found herself in Sydney where she married Henry Koch, on 6 Dec 1854 at St Mary’s Catholic Cathedral Sydney.
(NSW Reg. V.1854 100/708) 

Newspapers stated that Henry Koch was from America. It would appear that Henry Christopher Koch was from St Louis in Missouri, USA, and a possible death record states that he arrived in the colony of NSW at the age of 21, ie. c.1852. The funeral notice said that he was from Illinois- St Louis is on the Mississippi river dividing Missouri from Illinois. Steamboats first arrived in St Louis in 1818, improving connections with New Orleans and eastern markets. Missouri was admitted as a state in 1821, in which slavery was legal, working in many jobs on the waterfront as well as on riverboats. Neighbouring Illinois was a free state. Immigrants from Ireland and Germany arrived in St Louis in significant numbers in the 1840's and the population of St Louis grew from less than 20,000 in 1840 to 77,800 in 1850. Settled by many Southerners in a slave state, the city was split in political sympathies and became polarized during the American Civil war beginning in 1861. By then Henry had left for New South Wales. The death record states he was born in St Louis, c.1831, so his father, also named Henry Christopher Koch, a miller, had settled in St Louis before the majority of German immigrants in the 1840's.

Not long after their marriage, Henry and Ellen Koch travelled north to QLD and settled in Dalby sometime around 1856. 
Dalby, on the Myall Creek was declared a township in 1854 and became a municipality in 1863. It is on the Darling Downs, about 216 km north west of Brisbane. It is said that it was named after Dalby on the Isle of Man. The railway arrived at Dalby in 1868.
So the Koch's played an important part in the early history of this town.

By June 1857, Henry was regularly importing goods into QLD, and in September 1857 Koch was one of those praised for their efforts in fighting a fire in the Dalby Arms Hotel.  By all accounts, Koch appears to have been financially well-off. Whether he made his money on one of the gold-fields is not known.

The Kochs were prominent and quite affluent town citizens, owning extensive property and shops. In the early 1860’s, the Kochs were renowned throughout the district  for hosting grand balls to which over 100 of the leading residents in the town and district would be invited, which were reported in local newspapers.

Unusually, on 29 December 1862, Ellen Koch was named as the purchaser of Allotment 11, Section 66, in the township of Dalby, 2 roods, for ₤9. 17s. This land was acquired by Ellen’s named heir, her brother Stephen Tobin in April 1895 and transferred to Edward Michael O’Keefe in August 1895. Oddly her husband was not named as her heir, nor could he claim her inheritance, possibly because he was not an British citizen.

Dalby in 1896 taken from the Dalby Pictorial Book

By 1863, descriptions of Dalby included ‘Mr Koch’s extensive stores’. He sold his stores in July 1865 and left for Sydney, only to return to Dalby in December, due to ill health.
In September 1867, Henry applied for 320 acres of the land released upon the Cumkillenbar Reserve. He built a grand seven room house, approached by an avenue bordered by fruit trees and a vineyard, which masked the stockyard and a paddock under cultivation. He grew cotton with fair success, however the farming experiment ultimately proved a failure and was later sold at a loss. A report in 1874 on the Cumkillenbar Agricultural Reserve, described the Koch homestead: at one time it had been the ‘beau ideal’ of what a prosperous farmer’s residence ought to be. Koch is said to have laid out ₤1500 on the whole property. To support him in his attempt to make his farming experiment pay, he had the benefit of an income from property in Dalby to the amount of ₤250 p.a. The property passed into the hands of Messrs Bell of Jimbour for ₤300.

Koch was appointed to the Commission of the Peace in 1868. In June that year, the R.C. Bishops of Brisbane, Maitland and Goulburn  visited Dalby and were conveyed to the church in the carriages of Mr Koch and Alderman O’Keeffe. The Bishops then stayed the night at the Koch residence, before moving on to Toowoomba.
In October 1868, the great fire in the main street of Dalby destroyed Koch’s extensive premises- damage was estimated at ₤1500 and Koch was unfortunately uninsured.

In August 1870, Koch stood as a candidate for the Northern Downs, losing to Mr Bell at the election. His electoral speech revealed he held rather controversial views re the extension of the railway which he stated had been a curse to the colony; he also supported the idea that all land bordering rivers and dams should be resumed by government as reserves; and that every farmer in QLD should be allowed on the land on the same terms as squatters, which would encourage immigration to the state.

Koch held several positions of importance in the town, including J.P.
In 1870, he was appointed one of the trustees of the Dalby General Cemetery.

In December 1871, the Kochs decided to leave  Dalby- the water supplies in the area had completely dried up and Henry announced  his plan to return to America. Whether they went to America first before returning and trying their luck in the newly developing area opening up in the far north of the state near the Hodgkinson goldfields near Cooktown, or whether they went straight there is uncertain.
The Koch’s selected an allotment in the newly opened town near the Palmer goldfield named Cooktown followed by  two allotments in the town of Smithfield near Cairns in Nth QLD,  becoming pioneers of that area which was fast developing as a gold mining area.
Having purchased land in September 1875, Henry opened a saddlery and harness store in Cooktown, and was elected as an alderman. In May 1877, he and Ellen both purchased land at Smithfield, upriver from the newly developing township of Cairns.

Ellen died of jungle fever at Smithfield in April 1878, and was buried at Smithfield the next day. She left no issue. (QLD Reg. 1878/C427)
Strangely, it was her brother Stephen Tobin  who claimed her properties in Dalby, Cooktown and Smithfield in 1894,  as her 'heir-in-law', not her husband.

The following year, in 1879,  Henry had a narrow escape from a cruel death, in an encounter with a crocodile determined to have Koch for dinner. In that same year it was reported that he found two nuggets of gold at Tinaroo south of Cairns.

Henry Koch was last heard of when a wrote a commentary on the Land Act for 'The Worker' (Brisbane) newspaper on 28 June 1902. 


The following newspaper reports reveal the details of the Koch’s lives in Dalby and Smithfield:
North Australian, Ipswich and General Advertiser , Tues 9 June 1857, p2:
Shipping Intelligence
Yarra Yarra: 1 case saddlery, Koch

North Australian, Ipswich and General Advertiser Tues 29 September 1857,  p.3 -Fire at Dalby
On Saturday night last, about midnight, the Inn  known as the Dalby Arms, was discovered to be on fire. It was first discovered by a neighbour and by the time the alarm was given the whole building was enveloped in flames.... All the inhaitants of the town were promptly on the spot, and a line was formed for the purpose of conveying water from the creek, and thanks to their exertions, the large stable adjoining was saved. There was but one lodger in the end of the house where the fire originated, and he has been arrested on suspicion of setting fire to the premises. Great praise is due to the following parties who signalised themselves by their untiring exertions to extinguish the fire:- Messrs Roche, Burns, Sapthurn, Taylor, Clarke, Koch, etc.

Darling Downs Gazette and General Advertiser, Thurs 22 July 1858 p.2
Register of Lost Stock
From Green Bank, 9 months ago, as Iron Gray Mare, long tail, branded HK WG on shoulder: owner H Koch, Dalby.

The North Australian Ipswich and General Advertiser Tues 15 Nov 1859 p2

Roman Catholic Church Ipswich

The following is a complete list of all Subscriptions paid towards the erection of the Ipswich Catholic Church during the period of one year.

Includes Henry Koch £1
Moreton Bay Courier Sat 12 Jan 1861 p3- DALBY
Jan 5th 1860 (sic)
Another private ball took place in the same hall on the Thursday night, Mr and Mrs. Koch of this town being the donors. About 120 of the leading residents in the town and district, availed themselves of the invitation, the Messrs. Smith were in attendance and their fine music was duly appreciated by the number of persons joining in each dance. About 80 or 90 sat down about 12 o’clock to a supper composed of every luxury the “Downs” could afford, and dancing was resumed until daylight, when the guests separated, highly delighted with their entertainment. Mr and Mrs Koch may pride themselves upon the success of the festivities, which could not have passed off better in the city. Only one slight circumstance occurred to mar the harmony of the evening. A puppy calling himself a north squatter, having more assurance than sense, grossly insulted some of the company, but the door was opened and he was politely handed out to enjoy the scenery of Dalby by moonlight.

Darling Downs Gazette and General Advertiser Thurs 21 March 1861 p2

Public Notice

In reference to an advertisement in last week’s ‘Gazette’ I hereby give notice that HENRY KOCH of Dalby has no claim whatever over any horses or cattle belonging to me; and that any person purchasing from the said Henry Koch cattle of the following brands will be doing so entirely at their risk: on the rib and rump WC on rear ribs and C on JC near shoulder.

I also caution anyone from purchasing from Henry Koch, a Roan Mare, branded JSC near shoulder and a Yearling Foal branded J near shoulder

John Collins

The North Australian Ipswich and General Advertiser Fri 3 May 1861 p.4


Those eligible Premises, situated in Drayton-street Dalby, now in the occupation of Mr H. Koch, and one of the best business sites in that town. The buildings stand on a half-acre allotment, and comprise a Store 20x14, a Parlour 12x14, and two Bedrooms each 10x12, a Sitting-room 10x12, with the necessary Outhouses, Ac. The Allotment was sold as No. 4 of Section No. 6 and is securely fenced in with a good paling fence. The whole will be sold on liberal terms, and is to be parted with solely on account of the proprietor leaving the colony.

Applications to be made to Mr H. Koch, Dalby or to Messrs T Jones and Co. Ironmongers, Ipswich.

The Courier Tues 20 May 1862 p3- DALBY
A ball was given on Monday night by Mr Koch, at his private residence. About eighty persons were present, who apparently enjoyed themselves exceedingly, as they did not “go home toll Morning”.

The Courier Tues 27 May 1862 p3- DALBY
An accident occurred here the early part of this week, the results of which might have been serious, but which fortunately resulted in nothing worse than a broken arm. Quite enough at once, most people will say, but when a man’s horse falls with him, and amuses itself by rolling over him, I think the man has cause to congratulate himself that it is no worse. All this happened to Mr. Koch, storekeeper here, and to the surprise of those who saw the occurrence, he escaped with a broken arm only.

Henry Koch was not shy to take out writs against people (various Brisbane Couriers):
Police Court 25 Jan 1862
Henry Koch v. F. Atkinson: goods sold and delivered amounting to to ₤8 5s 6d, settled by private arrangement.
Police Court 24 July 1862
Before F Rawlins Esq. P.M. and F. Roche, Esq. J.P.
H. Koch v. John Cahill: Cruelty and injury to horses- no wish to push the case: dismissed
H. Koch v. Mrs Lavercombe: Summons for using abusive language: withdraws
John Barry, charge with stealing a quabtity of spurs, the property of H. Koch; sentenced to three months’ imprisonment
Petty Debts Court 24 July 1862
H. Koch v. W. Parkes: Summons for £10 for goods delivered; verdict for plaintiff
H. Koch v. Thomas Bateman: Summons for £2.12s.6d. for goods supplied; verdict for plaintiff
Police Court 2 Sept 1862
H Koch v. R. Heales: Summons for ₤3.7s.6d. good sold and delivered: verdict for plaintiff.
Police Court 23 Sept 1862
Wm Mann charged with illegally working a horse, the property of H. Koch: case dismissed; Court not having any jurisdiction

The Courier Sat 1 Aug 1863 p.4- DALBY
July 28 1863
Report on the town of Dalby (Dalby declared a township in 1854 and became a municipality in 1863):
Anyone who knew Dalby four or five years ago, and who has been absent since that time, would now scarcely recognize it. The numerous buildings springing up- the many improvements that are intended to be made by our future corporation (now undergoing the process of incubation)- the number of the population- the increasing commercial enterprise- and the annual amount paid for carriage of goods and wool in the Dalby district (estimated at £30,000)- are conclusive evidence of the growing importance of Dalby, etc. etc.
The streets now being defined- the different buildings are brought prominently into view, the number of which astonish even the residents. Bark huts have given way to more substantial erections, which will bear favourable comparisons with any buildings out of Brisbane, and many of them would not disgrace even the leading streets of the metropolis. (Follows with description of hotels, shops etc. and continues). Of stores, I may more particularly mention the business like building erected by Mr John Disney, Mr Koch’s extensive stores, and the new premises of Messrs Trundle and Cottell.

The Courier Thurs 17 Dec 1863- DALBY
Auctioneers’ licenses have been granted to , etc. etc. Mr Henry Koch had applied for and obtained a general auctioneer’s license.

The Northern Australian Brisbane Tues 2 Feb 1864 p4.


To Let, for a term of years, the well known General Stores, situated in Drayton-street Dalby, at present in occupation of Mr Henry Koch, who is retiring from business.

The premises consist of a Retail Store with House combined, the latter containing two Parlours and four Bedrooms.

Large Wholesale Store, with loft and two rooms attached, capable of storing 100 tons of goods.

An excellent Kitchen, adjoins the house, with store-room and bed-room.

The premises are centrally situated in Drayton-street, and well known to the Mercantile Houses in Brisbane, having been established for Seven Years.

For Further particulars apply to Henry Koch Dalby

Brisbane Courier Sat 23 July 1864 p5
A sale of 56 allotments of land, situate in the township of Jandowae, was held in the Dalby Court-House on the 18th instant. The attendance was very poor, and not a single allotment underwent competition. The following is the result of the sale:- Lot 15, purchased by Mr Henry Koch. (NB another 2 lots went for “the upset price of” £8 per acre.

Brisbane Courier Wed 15 Feb 1865 p.2 IPSWICH
(From the QLD Times Frb 14)
A serious robbery was committed on Saturday night as Ross’s Victoria Hotel, East-street. Mrs Koch, wife of Henry Koch, storekeeper of Dalby, came down in the Toowoomba coach on Saturday evening, en route for Victoria, accompanied by two friends, Mrs Brown and Mrs Skelton, both of Dalby. They stopped at the Victoria Hotel., and, having booked themselves for the morning coach for Brisbane, retired to rest. Mrs Koch having in a pocket-book the flowing moneys:- Two ten-pound notes (new) of the Commercial Bank, issued at Dalby; two or three five-pound notes of the same Bank; a cheque for £5 drawn by ___ Vukgour, of Jingle Jingle Station, on the Orient Bank, Sydney; an order for £5.1s, by Watson and Roebuck, Halliford, in favor of a German, and endorsed by him, on a Sydney firm; some one-pound notes and gold and silver; as also a draft on the Commercial Bank, Sydney, in her favor, for £57. Mrs Koch and Mrs Brown occupied a room opening into the front balcony, adjoining the drawing room; and she felt the money in her pocket before undressing. She placed her clothes on the floor of the room, and the balcony door was left open; the other doors were closed, but not fastened. During the night Mrs Koch slept soundly, but Mrs Brown twice thought she heard someone in the drawing room. They rose early next morning, having to leave by the early coach, and Mrs Brown noticed a half-sovereign on the floor; this cause Mrs Koch to examine her pocket when she discovered that her money was gone. The clothes of both had been moved, but a gold watch and two brooches which were on the table had not been touched. Mr Ross was called, and it appearing that the room next to Mrs Koch’s which had been occupied by a drover, was vacant, the man who was then on his way to Brisbane with a mob of cattle, was brought back and searched, but nothing belonging to Mrs Koch was found on him. Afterwards the whole of the inmates and their apartments were searched, but without any result. An investigation was held yesterday by the Police Magistrate and Messrs Torn and Muchinson at the Victoria Hotel, but nothing calculated to afford a clue for the discovery of the thief was elicited.

Darling Downs Gazette and General Advertiser Sat 10 June 1865 p2

Preliminary Notice

Skelton and Hughes

Will sell by public auction, on Monday 26th June and 3 following days,

The whole of the Stores, Stock-in-trade &c., of Henry Koch Esq., who is retiring from business, comprising a general assortment of Merchandise.

Will be sold on the premises, Drayton Street, Dalby

Darling Downs Gazette and General Advertiser Sat 17 June 1865 p3 advert

To Squatters, Storekeepers and Others

Skelton and Hughes

Are instructed by Henry Koch Esq., to sell by public auction at his store, Drayton-street, Dalby on Monday 26th June, the 3 following days, a Large Stock of General Merchandise comprising:

Clothing, Blankets, Drapery, Flour, Tea, Sugar, Groceries, Oilman’s Stores, Ironmongery, Hardware &c. &c., Being the whole Stock of the proprietor, who is retiring from business.

The whole will be sold without reserve.

Darling Downs Gazette and General Advertiser Sat 12 August 1865 p1. Advertisement

Re-opening of Business Premises

The undersigned (J. Al Baxter) begs leave to inform the above that he has taken those eligible premises (lately occupied by Mr H. Koch, General Storekeeper) for a term of years, and has made considerable alterations nd improvements etc. Each department now being distinct and consisting of the following:

The Drapery, The Millinery (Ladies and Children), The Boots, The Clothing (Gentlemen and Boys), The Grocery, Wines and Spirits, The Ironmongery and Saddlery.

The Koch’s returned briefly to Sydney, but returned at the end of the year:
Brisbane Courier Mon 18 Dec 1865 p.3 DALBY
Many of the inhabitants will be glad to learn that Mr H. Koch has returned to take up- his residence permanently in Dalby. Some time since Mr Koch disposed of his business here, and went to reside in Sydney. At that place, we are informed, his health began to fail, and he determined to return to Dalby, where he has resided many years. He arrived a few days since, and doubtless the presence of his “familiar face” will afford gratification to his numerous friends.

Brisbane Courier Mon 19 Nov 1866 p.3 DALBY
On Thursday November 8, Mr Edward Phillip O’Dwyer, teacher of the Catholic School in Dalby, attended to his duties as usual, and while at tea, about half-past 7 o’clock in the evening, had a fainting fit. A scream from his wife attracted the attention of Mr H. Koch, his next-door neighbor, who at once attended, and by the application of cold water caused a temporary revival. Mr Koch took Mr O’Dwyer on to the verandah, when the latter said that he had not felt well for two or three days. Mr Koch then left with the view of procuring some assistance. After an interval of about ten minutes, Mrs O’Dwyer’s servant came into Mr Koch’s residence and said her master was dying. Mr Koch immediately went over. Dr. Howlin, who had been summoned after the first attack, immediately attended, but the vital spark had fled a few minutes before his arrival. A magisterial inquest and post mortem examination were held on the following day, and a verdict returned, “Died by the visitation of God”.

Brisbane Courier Tues 3 Sept 1867- DALBY
Free selection has caused no little stir and excitement during the present week in our usually quiet community. Already 720 acres have been taken up on the Cumkillenbar Reserve, and the deposits duly paid; and it is confidently anticipated that by Saturday next more than 2000 acres will have been applied for. Everyone speaks highly of the action taken by the Minister in thus throwing open the agricultural lands of the colony for occupation. Those amongst us who cannot just now raise sufficient of the “ready” to make a selection, good humoredly banter the lucky fellows who have manifested such alacrity in securing the first pick of the choicest blocks- if there can he any that is entitled to the term “choicest” where all the land is represented to be the very best in the colony. The scenery too, is said to be really beautiful; and lying as the reserve does near the foot of the lofty ranges comprising the Bunya Mountains, there is a much greater rainfall throughout the year than on the level country in the immediate vicinity of Dalby. To-morrow (Sunday) the town will be comparatively deserted, that day having been fixed upon by many of the inhabitants for a trip to the locality where so many hope permanently to settle down and found a home. The following persons have already applied for land selected by them- Henry Koch 320 acres, Alexander Macarthur 320 acres, Charles Barlow 100 acres.
The cottons seed sent by Mr Cozen for gratuitous distribution, arrived on Saturday last. Mr Roche has already distribute a considerable quantity, and those persons who intend to cultivate the plant had better secure a supply of seed at once.

Brisbane Courier Mon 17 Feb 1868 p.3- THE GAZETTE
We summarize from the Government Gazette of Saturday last, the following:
The Magistrate- the following gentlemen have been appointed to the Commission of the Peace:- Henry Koch, Dalby; etc. etc.

Brisbane Courier Mon 1 June 1868 p.2 DALBY
On Monday afternoon last, the Right Rev. Dr. Quinn, Bishop of Brisbane, accompanied by the Right Rev. Dr. Murray, Bishop of Maitland, and the Right Rev. Dr. Lanigan, Bishop of Goulburn, arrived at Dalby by the half-past 5 o’clock train. They were welcomed at the station by the Very Rev. D.J. D.Arcy, and a large body of members of the Church. The right rev. gentlemen were conveyed to the church in carriages of Henry Koch, Esq., J.P. and Alderman O’Keeffe, followed by the members of the Church where an address was read by the Rev. Father D’Arcy, on behalf of the congregation. After the reading of the address, a purse of sovereigns, subscribed by the Catholics of Dalby, was presented, in accepting which His Lordship addressed the congregation at some length. The three Bishops then severally blessed the persons assembled, and were afterwards conveyed to the residence of Mr Koch. On Tuesday morning the Right Rev. De Quinn celebrated mass and preached. There was a large attendance. In the afternoon the right rev. gentlemen took a drive through the town, and in the evening were occupied in the church to a very late hour preparing penitents for most holy communion. On Wednesday morning the Bishops left Dalby for Toowoomba.

Dalby Herald & Western QLD Advertiser, Sat 13 Feb 1869
The Nunn Brothers have determined on clearing out the whole of the Damaged Stock,
Before Removing into their New Premises,
Lately built by Mr Henry Koch, on the site where the late Dalby Exchange stood in Drayton-street, etc.

Brisbane Courier Tues 6 Oct 1868 p5 DALBY
From the Daily Herald of Saturday last we take the following detailed account of the fire, briefly described in the Courier yesterday by our Daily correspondent:-
A fire occurred in Dalby on Thursday night last which in a few hours reduced a large proportion of the most valuable property in the town to a heap of ruins. The present aspect of Drayton-street brings forcibly to mind the devastation which resulted from the fires in Brisbane four years since, and which made such terrible havoc n the principal street of the metropolis. About 9 o’clock on Thursday night the groom at Mrs Hartley’s Post –office Hotel was in the harness- room attached to the stables; in this room a “fat-lamp” was burning, and during the temporary absence of the groom it is supposed the flame of the lamp was blown against the lining, causing it to ignite. The intense glare of light in the harness-room attracted the attention of Mr Seckington, who at once went to ascertain the cause, and found the whole of the lining ablaze. In two or three seconds afterwards the fire had ignited the hay in the loft over the stable, and Mr Seckington, seeing it was impossible to save that portion of the premises, raised an alarm, and then turned his attention to getting the horses out of the stable. The whole of the horses- ten in number- were fortunately set free without injury, and they immediately galloped away. In a very short time the stables were completely enveloped in flames, and the fire spread with great rapidity to the adjoining wooden buildings. The alarm was quickly carried over the town. In a short time Sergeant McKiernan with a number of constables arrived, and these were speedily followed by a general muster of the townspeople who rendered material aid in removing the contents of the adjacent stores and dwellings. A number of men exerted themselves in trying to save the kitchen at the rear of the hotel, and in this they happily succeeded, although it was ignited two or three times on the side nearest to the burning stable. Had the fire got control of the kitchen, nothing could have saved the main building from destruction. Another body of men was busy removing the carriages form the coach-house to a place of safety, and in tearing down the garden fences so as to cut off all communication with the buildings in Cunningham-street. By this time the fire had spread to Mr Murray’s fruit shop in Drayton-street, which burnt like a bundle of sticks, and then set in flames the extensive stores of Messrs Nunn Brothers, who lost a portion of their drapery stock and household goods, notwithstanding that every exertion was made to save them. The grocery store of Mr Spriggs was next in flames, and also the extensive wooden premises at the rear. At this stage of the conflagration the column of fire was the greatest and the heat most intense. It was hoped that the range of handsome two-story brick buildings belonging to Mr P. Hallimam, and only recently erected, would effectually prevent the flames spreading further in that direction; and such would doubtless have been the case had there been a good supply of water handy, to beat down, even for a brief period, the immense volume of flame which was lapping and climbing up the gable higher than the roof. But although the brick wall and iron roof did resist the progress of the fire for a considerable time, it was found when the huge blaze from the burning timber began to diminish that the flame had insinuated itself beneath the roof and had ignited the ridge-board, along which it gradually and slowly crept to the rafters, and along the other timber work in the roof. The slow progress the fire now made, however, enabled the occupiers of the shops beneath to remove most of the articles of value which they contained. The documents and other property belonging to the Commercial Bank were safely deposited in the vestry of the Church of England on the opposite side of the street. The stock of Mr Walter Taylor, chemist and druggist, was also removed, but sustained injury in the hurry attending the calamity of this nature. The stock of valuable jewelry in Mr Harris’ premises was also secured, without, so far as we can learn, any damage being done. As soon, however, as it became manifest, that Hallinan’s Buildings would be consumed, exertions were directed towards saving the wine and spirit stores of Messrs Landy Brothers, and also those adjoining belonging to Messrs Benjamin and Co., known as the old School of Arts, and in which a miscellaneous collection of merchandise usually found in spirit and grocery stores were accumulated, to the value of £9000 or £10,000. The Police Magistrate and the Mayor, both of whom, with many others of the principal residents, had arrived early at the scene of the conflagration, were indefatigable in their endeavors to direct to the best advantage the efforts of the crowd of men who had by this time assembled, and who were only too anxious to be of service. By the direction of the Police Magistrate, the small fruit shop which occupied the narrow space between Hallinan’s Buildings and Messrs. Landy’s establishment was cleared away; the contents of the stores were turned out, hogsheads of spirits, &c., being rolled away to a place of safety; wet blankets were spread over the entire roof, while a string of men attending to the creek passed up hundreds of buckets of water to be used to prevent Landy’s building taking fire. In addition to these precautions, the whole of the timber work likely to catch fire was knocked away, including the eaves, verandahs, and fences at the rear &c., &c.
These arrangements had scarcely been completed when the upper floor in Hallinan’s Buildings fell with a loud crash, sending up myriads of sparks, causing the fire to rage with increased fury. The brick walls, however, kept the fire back until it had almost exhausted itself. The men on the roof at Landy’s store directed their attention to a doorway in the upper story of the wall, and to a small wooden landing that overhung the narrow passage. As the flames burst through the doorway, buckets of water were thrown upon this landing and against the framework of the door. In spite of the great hear, the men resolutely stuck to their places on the roof, and kept the blankets well saturated with water. By this means the fire was prevented spreading further, and the valuable properties belonging to Messrs Landy and to Messrs Benjamin and Co. were saved from a very narrow escape, and it is entirely owing to the exertions of the numerous volunteers, who came forward in the most praiseworthy manner, that the work of destruction was arrested. Both Messrs Landy and Messrs Benjamin are sufferers to a considerable amount in consequence of the hurried removal of their property; but Messrs Landy more particularly because the whole of their stock of drapery and other goods were bundled out into the street, and several of the cases of spirits were broken and their contents spilled. By about 1 o’clock yesterday morning the fire had so far abated that no further apprehensions of danger were entertained. The police authorities took possession of the property lying scattered about the streets, and watched the smoldering beams and heaps of rubbish until long after sunrise, when they were relieved. The scene now presented is desolate in the extreme. The fire has made a clean sweep of what was the best property in town, and has brought ruin upon several persons. It is estimated that Mrs Hartley is a sufferer to a large amount, a large quantity of valuable household furniture brought from Jondaryan, which was stored ion the coach-house, having been consumed. She also lost a large quantity of harness, saddler, a dray, &c. So far as we can learn, none of the goods were insured. Mr Murray’s loss will be about £100; not insured. Mesrrs Nunn Brothers saved a large portion of their stock, which we believe was insured for £1500. The building however, as well as that occupied by Mr Spriggs, said the dwelling-house and back premises were the property of Mr Henry Koch, J.P. and were not insured. The damage is estimated at £1500. Mr Sprigg’s loss (uninsured) will be about £200. Mr Hallinan’s loss, however, will prove the heaviest. The range of handsome buildings he had erected on his allotment has, we are informed, cost him, with improvements recently made upwards of £3400; but the stock was insured for £1000 in a Sydney office. The loss to the Commercial Bank wa unimportant, and consisted principally of injury to furniture. Mr Walter Taylor’s stock was not insured, and the loss he has sustained must be considerable. Mr Harris, jeweler, did not sustain any damage beyond the loss of shop fixtures and furniture. Mr Landy’s stock is valued at between and £5000; but the loss altogether resulting from injury by removal will not exceed £400 or £500. The stock was, we understand insured for £2500. The damage sustained by Messrs Benjamin and Co. is also very small in proportion to the value of the stock endangered, over which there was no insurance whatever. Too great praise cannot be awarded to our townspeople for the readiness with which they came forward to render whatever assistance it was possible to give. Prominent amongst them were the ministers of religion, whose energy upon the occasion deserves special mention. Good service was also rendered the police; and a blacksmith, named Adcock, distinguished himself by his persevering efforts. Other persons were very active in helping to put out the flames, and also in saving Landy’s store, but they were so numerous that it would be invidious to mention one or two among so many. At one time Ford’s Hotel was considered to be in danger, and the proprietor took the precaution to protect his establishment by spreading wet blankets on the roof; but the measures taken to prevent the conflagration gaining full possession of Landy’s store proving successful, Mr Ford’s premises have not sustained any damage whatever. We are glad to be able to state that no person was injured.

The Queenslander Sat 20 March 1869 p8

A serious accident we regret to have to record, occurred last week to Mr F. McKeon, a settler on the Cumkellenbar Reserve. Mr McKeon was preparing to accompany Mr H. Koch J.P. into town on the morning of the above day, and saddled a young horse he had recently purchased for the purpose. When attempting to mount, the horse became restive and plunged throwing Mr McKeon to the ground. He was found to have sustained a fracture of the collarbone. In the evening he was brought into town, when Dr Howlin reduce the fracture and the patient is now progressing favourably.
Brisbane Courier Mon 20 Dec 1869 p3- DALBY
The usual monthly Court at the Land-office, Dalby, was held on Wednesday by the new Commissioner Mr A. McDowall. Two applications were sent in for a small piece of land of the Cumkillenbar Reserve, of about 35 acres, the applicants being Mr H. Koch and Mr F. McKeon. Mr Koch’s application was approved.

Brisbane Courier Mon 1 Aug 1870 p.2- DALBY
The Dalby Herald of Saturday last-
“The election rumours mentioned in our last issue have scarcely yet assumed tangible form. Two days since, many persons began to feat that Mr Bell would ‘walk over’ after all, and there was no little doubt and dissatisfaction manifest in the various visages of the expectant deputy returning-officers, of whom we learn there are far more applicants than billets to give them. Ion the earlier part of the week an attempt was made to get up a requisition to Mr F. O’Sullivan, but somehow it failed. Since then reports have been current of a working man being brought out, but that also appears to have ended ‘in smoke’. A requisition to Mr H. Koch J.P. of Cumkillenbar, is, however, in course of signature, and many persons hope that he will allow himself to be nominated, as he is familiar with the wants of the district, and the great necessity which exists of settling on the adjoining lands a class of farmers, who will be independent to a certain extent of the vicissitudes of the seasons- a  number of small squatters in fact, who may lease from the Crown areas of land, varying from 3000 to 10000 acres. We understand that a meeting of electors favourable to Mr Koch’s return was held at the Post Office Hotel, last night, and that they are so farm in earnest as to have determined upon raising a fund with which to defray Mr Koch’s election expenses. Since writing the above we have received the copy of the requisition and Mr Koch’s reply, in which he consents to come forward and announced that he will address the electors in the School of Arts on Tuesday evening. Mr Bell arrived in town last night. It is not improbable, therefore, that something of interest will be talked about during the ensuing week. The visages of expectant ‘deputies’ are already assuming a cheerful and satisfactory aspect, while the publicans and sinners are becoming jubilant.

Brisbane Courier Wed 10 Aug 1870 p3.
To the Editor of the Brisbane Courier.
Sir, Everyone who desires the welfare and permanent prosperity of QLD, will, I am sure, heartily concur with the sentiments of the leader (in your Tuesday’s issue) on the subject of the so-called “Royal Agricultural Society of QLD”. That leader states- and its statement is beyond contradiction- that “the great want of QLD is a Colonial Agricultural Society, worthy of its name;”- a society having in view “the progress of agriculture and the improvement of live- stock.” Of a truth, that is the great, nay, the main, want of Qld. The society that held its exhibition in Toowoomba last week is as much a travesty on what an agricultural society should be, as the one that lately held its “Shoe” in Brisbane.

In his able letters in your columns, “Jumbuck” has pointed out that, until there is a combined and comprehensive system of farming initiated and carried out in Qld, there never can be any really substantial class of settlers or settlement in her midst. He also drew a very striking contrast between two descriptions of settlers he saw in NSW:- the one, a motley and miserable class, ill-clothed, ill0fed, and ill-mounted; the other, a body of men pleasant to look upon- the true prototypes of the well-to-do yeomen of the old country. After drawing the picture of the two groups, “Jumbuck” tells us, in plain terms, the cause of the contrast. The bluff, well-looking, and evidently thoroughly prosperous men were those who had combined, with cultivation, the keeping of stock: the other group (the analogues of the greater portion of our Qld farmers), a class that merely subsisted upon the raising of maize, pumpkins and an acre of two of wheat.
Now, Sir, the sooner Qld is stimulated to settle a class of yeomen on her waste lands the better for us all- the better, also, for yourself, who must, I am sure, be (as most of your readers are) sick at heart at hose innumerable letters on “Protection”, which rob the Courier of the space that should be allotted to useful intelligence. Owing to the on-substantial settlement of our waste lands it is that these wearisome scribes (by some of whom, I perceive, John Stuart Mill is regarded as nil) are so continuously clamorous in our midst. They have not employment; but look not as the real cause of the slackness in their several trades. With our interior depopulated, whence can come their customers? But were there (as there should and might be), throughout the length and breadth of beautiful Qld, thousands upon thousands of substantial families on substantial farms, the mechanics and tradesmen of metropolis would then soon find a wonderful tide of prosperity come to their very doors- and all without the aid of their pet nostrum of “Protection”.
During all our electioneering hubbub, it is pleasing to see that the substantial idea for Qld has been enunciated by at least one (and it may be said by only one) candidate Mr Henry Koch of Dalby, has told the people of that town that the great fault of the present land law is, that it takes from a man the money that, at first, ought to be invested in stock, and posts and rails for paddocks wherein to improve and cultivate fodders for that stock. He maintains that every farmer in Qld ought to be permitted to go on to the land on the same terms as the squatter- ought to be permitted to take up from 1000 to 5000 acres for that purpose of stock raising and wool-growing, on whatever portion of the resumed ___ of runs he might choose to select. Mr Koch believes- not in wholesale alienation, but in the rental of the public estate by the farmers of the Colony.
Had the above proposition been the main feature of Qld’s land policy, of one thing the present writer is assure, that our Darling Downs especially would have now teemed with a wealthy and (as would have been found by the colony at large) a most substantial and all-enriching yeoman population.
One gratifying fact should be noticed. Our excellent Governor seems fully alive to the fact (as was evidenced from his speech both at Toowoomba and at the late Brisbane agricultural show meeting) that a combined system of husbandry- a blending of the crook and ploughshare- is the sine quo non of Queensland’s agrarian prosperity- and, with that, the prosperity of all. Sir George Bowan, also, held the like opinion; as was evidenced from the conversation (reported in the Courier at the time) held by him with Mr Moses Adsett of Enoggera.
Let this be the election cry throughout Queensland- Stock for the farmer; and land at a low rental, whereon to keep it.
Yours &c.,

Brisbane Courier Fri 12 Aug 1870 p.3
Mr H. Koch, one of the candidates for Northern Downs, held a meeting in the School of Arts hall, at which a respectable and numerous body of electors and others interested attended. The chair was occupied by Mr. Alderman Jessop. Mr Koch very briefly laid his views on the position of the colony before the meeting. These views were comprised under a number of headings. This, He was not in favor of railway expansion, either from Dalby westward or from Ipswich to Brisbane, nor would he support any continuation of the railway in the North at present. He considered the railways to have been a curse to the colony, in so far as they had led up to fully one-fourth of all the distress and disaster the colony had suffered since they were began. He would support the Palmer Ministry, and believed in the members of it. He advocated a land law that would extend the area of the settled districts to Roma and the Dawson. He was an advocate for economy and retrenchment, therefore could not but support a Ministry pledged to measures having economy and retrenchment for their basis. He would have- if he could- all the lands of the colony open for the people to go upon them with the greatest facility, and to further this view would support the idea of the Government resuming all water frontages and reserving them for the use of the people by proclamation; and he thought reserves of 1000 to 5000 acres should be further made around the dams that were now in existence or to be made. All dams at present made should be resumed, and the Government should make more reservoirs or dams wherever they were required throughout the colony. Unless this were done many other things must remain undone in the way of settling the people upon the lands, and the population now brought to the colony at such great expense would continue to be drained off into the other colonies. He advocated free selection before survey, on the American system- the lands to be taken up at £1 per acre and paid for by yearly installments for five years, in the event of any default the land to revert to the Crown, and be immediately open for selection by any other colonist. He was also in favor of leasing large blocks of from 1000 to 5000 acres of land for grazing or agriculture. His reason for objecting to railway extension was that if they were extended in the South they ought also to be gone on with in the North, and the colony could not stand that at present. It returned, he would support the necessary motion for a sum of money to make Cunningham-street, as by the action of the Government that street had become the main thoroughfare of the town. On immigration he was particularly clear that we did not require any more Government immigration at present. What was wanted was a good land bill well administered, and the money that was at present paid for immigrants spent in the colony, to make the people prosperous who were here, and thereby endure spontaneous immigration. The meeting was afterwards addresses by Mr. P. Hallinan, who afforded much amusement by the peculiar style of oratory he uses, and at intervals tow inebriated electors entertained those present by a little dancing and hooraying peculiar amongst excited temperaments of a certain type. A vote of te usual kind was carried in Mr Koch’s favor, and the usual compliment to the chairman closed the proceedings. Of the entire affair, I quote an opinion offered by one of the free, &c., at the close of the meeting, viz., “Well, it is jolly good fun, but awful rot.” Whether this opinion obtained with the general body I cannot say, but think the meeting was a very pleasant if not a very important affair. It is now the turn of someone else, and as the thirst for political excitement is at present very great, candidates should be considerate enough to “walk up at once.”

Brisbane Courier Tues 16 Aug 1870 p.2
The Dalby Herald of Saturday last says:-
“Election affairs continue to absorb public attention, and speculation of all sorts are in circulation as to which of the candidates will be returned. Mr Bell addressed a large meeting at the Union Hall, on Wednesday night, and everything passed off very decorously, yet sufficient feeling was manifested to show Mr Bell that he will have plenty of work to do before he can make sure of the result. Indeed, there will be no certainty about it until the ‘numbers are up’ on polling day. The fact of so few holding up their hands, wither for or against the vote of confidence was not a favourable indication, and has given rise to much comment. On Thursday night, Mr Slaughter addressed a large number of persons at the School of Arts, and he was loudly cheered. He reviewed the policy of the candidates, and their claims upon the support of the electors, in an eloquent speech, and concluded by announcing his resolution to withdraw from the contest, but urged upon them the importance of returning Mr Koch as their representative in the present crisis. Mr Slaughter’s withdrawal is regarded with satisfaction by Mr Koch’s supporters, and they appear to be confident their candidate will be returned, while those who espouse Mr Bell’s side are equally sanguine of success. Mr. Thorn is hardly spoken of, and now that Mr. Slaughter has retired, it would be a pity to mar the interesting contest between the two prominent candidates by a third one going to the poll. As Sir Lucius O’Trigger would observe, ‘It is a very pretty quarrel as it stands and the slightest interference will spoil it.’ “

Henry Koch was defeated by Mr Bell at the election

Brisbane Courier Mon 14 Nov 1870 p2
The following notifications appear in Saturday’s Government Gazette:-
The following gentlemen have been appointed trustees of Dalby General Cemetery, under the provisions of the Cemetery Act: Messrs James Skelton, Henry Koch, William Twine, Richard Sexton, and John Bronchhurst.

Brisbane Courier Wed 22 March 1871 p.3 Supreme Court Insolvency

In the Estate of Murty Meade- Insolvent was not present Debts proved by Henry Koch £29.11s.2d. (rent, allowed as preferent), &c

Dalby Herald and Western Qld Advertiser, Sat 7 October 1871 p3

The Kochs decided to leave Dalby at the end of 1871:

The Queenslander Sat 10 Dec 1871 p11.


Dec 28 Another week or two and Dalby will have to emigrate to a more favourable spot. The water is all but gone- a nice position for a town under responsible Government!

Mr H. Koch, a well known and highly respectable inhabitant is leaving here in a few days; his property is to be sold off this week. Mr Koch is a magistrate of the colony, and is bound for America, of which country he is a native. He does not give a very sanguine view of farming in this locality.

Whether the Koch's left for America as planned, only to return a short time later is undetermined.

The following adverts for the sale of Koch's property appeared:

Dalby Herald and Western QLD Advertiser, Sat 16 December 1871 p3

Dalby Herald & Western QLD Advertiser, Sat 25 November 1871 p3

Description of the Cumkillenbar property:

Brisbane Courier Sat 1 Aug 1874 p.5.
The Darling Downs Selections
By our special commissioner
Cumkillenbar Agricultural Reserve being settled under the Act of 1866 does not strictly come within the scope of my mission. The experience in agriculture gained by the occupants of the farms of which it is composed bears, however, so directly upon the prospects of all settlers in this part of the Darling Downs, that I considered the public would be benefitted by an account of what has been effected here. The position is well chosen where a series of gentle ridges meet the plain through which the Bunya Creek runs to join the north branch of Myall Creek. It is simply a continuation of the same country as is included in Mr Moffatt’s selections, recently described by me. On the ridges the soli is reddish and somewhat lighter than along the creek, and was supposed to be similar to the fertile chocolate loam which surrounds Toowoomba. It was also judged that the neighbourhood of the ridges would attract to this area a more frequent rainfall than nature had allotted to the rest of the district. How far these expectations have been fulfilled, I shall show as I proceed. I may commence by stating that agriculture here has not proved a success. The number of farmers cultivating land on this reserve was, I am informed, originally eleven. Of these but four retain their holdings. The rest have sold out and left the place, with the exception of one, who still cultivates his original holding as the employee of the purchaser.
In all directions fenced farms or paddocks present themselves to the view. The number of patches now under cultivation is, however, but three. Mr Donovan, an original selector, farms one of these, and has some 20 or 30 acres under corn and green fodder. He has, however, long given up the idea of making a living by this means, and gains his chief subsistence by a small herd of cattle, which he is permitted to run in the neighbourhood.

The next farm has a fine house upon it, which contains seven rooms, and, although wearing now a somewhat neglected air, has evidently at one time been the beau ideal of what a prosperous farmer’s residence ought to be. You enter the place through neat gates, and approach the house by a straight avenue bordered by well-grown fruit trees, comprising the apple, peach, quince, loquat, apricot, orange, and fir, besides a patch of vineyard. These mask on one hand the stockyard and on the other the paddock now under cultivation, which is about 30 acres in extent. The formed the home and part of the estate of a Mr. H. Koch, who is said to have laid out £1,500 on the whole property, which comprised, I believe, two or three hundred acres. To support him in his attempt to make his farming experiment pay, I understand he had the benefit of an income from property in Dalby to the amount of £250 per annum.
This, it must be granted was a fair start. The result, however, was failure. The property passed into the hands of Messrs Bell of Jimbour for the sum, if my informant was correct, of £300. Mr Moffat, the manager of Cumkillenbar station (part of Jimbour) keeps here, on Mr Bell’s behalf, a married man, who resides with his family in the house, and himself cultivates the land. He was at work at the time of my visit, and his account of recent crops left little room for surprise at Mr Koch’s want of success. Of some seven acres of this ground the last crop of corn only amounted, he said, to about 50 bushels. Not 50 bushels per acre, but that quantity from the whole seven. This statement I could hardly have ventured to reproduce had it not been corroborated by another informant who was known to me by repute as a reliable man, and who had himself husked the produce stated. The crop of oaten hay was also very poor. To Messrs Bell this mattered little. It very possibly was half enough to pay wages, altogether. But the effect upon a farmer who would have to rely for his living upon such returns can be readily imagined. Behind a wall built up of the stones turned out of the ground probably when first broken up, and still retaining a few creepers once meant to convert it from a disfigurement into an ornament to the place, I noticed a broken machine of an appearance which did not seem to connect it with tillage. On enquiry, I learnt that this was a cotton gin, once the property of Mr Koch, who had cultivated the staple at one period with fair success. Trifles such as this marked the place as a scene of disaster, and lent a depressing atmosphere to all the surroundings. The half-empty house, the unnatural stillness, where the choices of numerous occupants might have been expected, the half-finished embellishments and broken appliances, made this stage of my journey a sentimental one, and disposed me to reflections in the manner of Sterne’s genius. I recommend these hints to the notice of Mr R. West Mayne, the talented dreamer of “The Two Visions”, who resides at Jimbour…….
For these disheartening results the climate appears to have been chiefly blamable. The rainfall is too intermittent. The ground is alternately parched and drowned. For two years at one stretch, the creek skirting the
Reserve has been entirely waterless, and all the wells on the farms have run dry at the same time, including one sunk to a depth of 102 feet. The red soil which was believed to be identical in character with the loam about Toowoomba, appears also to have been a delusion. Its lightness of color seemed to me to be due rather to the admixture of sandy constituents than to any other cause, and the unanimous opinion of the farmers pronounced it wanting in some constituent of fertility. They also allege that, except along the creek, it has no great depth, and attribute the early exhaustion of the Lucerne to its roots reaching after a year of two of growth, a substratum of cold and barren pipeclay, or gravel.

Relocation to Cooktown

Sometime between 1872-1875, Henry and Ellen Koch left the Dalby district to try their luck in the newly developing area opening up in the far north of the state, near the Hodgkinson and Palmer goldfields. Koch opened a store in the new township of Cooktown servicing the Palmer goldfields which opened in 1873,  and then by 1878 they had moved  further south to Smithfield  (now a suburb of Cairns), on the Barron River, which served the newly opened Hodgkinson goldfield. 
Whether they had first travelled back to Henry's homeland in America, which was their original intention, and had returned to QLD, is uncertain.

In The Courier 1 December 1875, Henry Koch advertised as a saddle and harness maker at Cooktown.

On 22 September 1876 Henry Koch was a candidate for alderman:

Brisbane Courier Sat 30 Sept 1876 p5.
Sept 29
Mr Henry Koch was elected an alderman today by a majority of 27 votes over Mr Menzies.
The revenue for the month up to today amounts to £7848. The export of gold for the same period is 46,701 ozs and for the quarter 125,533 ozs.
The weather is hot, and large bush fires are raging.

H. Koch and Co. was listed in the Cooktown Post Office Directory in 1876.
In 1875/ 76/ 77, H. Koch was listed as a saddler/harness maker, and an alderman in 1877. (The Courier 1/12/1875)

The Herald 7 July 1875 Louis (?) Koch was a Police Court witness.
In the Cook Shire Council Minutes:
1885:  E. Cock- Hope Street- Section 19 Lot 19;
H. Cock- Hope Street- Section 19 Lot 17

Cookshire Council Minutes 30 July 1891
Land- Leases Application for release by H. Koch- Allotments 17 and 19, Sect 19

1893 Rates: Lot 17 owned by W. Northcott;  
Lot 19 owned by S. Tobin (Ellen’s brother)
In 1896, Lot 19 was taken over by W.R. Humphreys

An article in the Brisbane Courier Sat 17 Feb 1877 p6- SMITHFIELD, describes this newly opening area on the Barron River, near the Hodgkinson gold diggings:
After a sojourn of six weeks at the town of Cairns, I took a trip to Smithfield, which town is situate on the north bank of the Barron River, and which I think is sufficiently high to be free from the action of floods during the rainy season.
The town of Cairns, now being built on the bank of Trinity Inlet is but slightly elevated above the ordinary sea level, and a great portion of it must be liable to floods during spring tides, the water marks on the trees bearing sufficient evidence thereof. The soil there is sandy, and totally unsuited for cultivation for several miles adjacent to the township. Some five miles seaward, the Barron river emptied itself into Trinity Inlet. The river is navigable for vessels of light draft up to Smithfield, a distance of ten miles. From this place the packers from the Hodgkinson diggings get their supplies, which are brought thither by boats from Cairns. Toe steamers and a number of smaller boats ply daily between the two townships. What a contrast do the north and south banks of the Barron Rover present! The land on the south side is a sandy waste, where the usual forms of Eucalypti grow. The north bank is a fertile valley, the soil of which in most places is a rich humus, while the valley itself is intersected with belts of forest timber, forming at places jungles as dark and dense as any that I have seen in India. The mountains bounding the valley to the west are covered with forests of the most valuable timber in the world, resulting from the rich deposits of volcanic soil covering the mountains from base to apex. Huge cedars grow thereon, some of which I found fifteen feet in girth, the trunks upwards of forty feet above ground before branching; Kauri pine of enormous dimensions, some twenty feet in girth and fifty feet in height above the ground, the trunks as round and straight as could be wished. Here also were to be seen silky oak, mahogany, and other kinds of hardwood. Fruits of various kinds were abundant. I also found nuts in unlimited quantities. At the top of the mountain range, adjacent to Douglas’ Track, I found gold in the ravines, but not sufficient to pay. I do not doubt, however, but payable gold will be found thereabouts in the alluvial, while the numerous reefs of quartz jutting out of the ground lead one to believe that he is on a goldfield which requires but time and capital to develop. A road has now been made by Mr C. McDonald through the dense scrubs which cover the coastal range. This road enables the packers and miners to get their supplies, and without it great suffering would inevitably have been experienced on the Hodgkinson from the high prices concomitant on the long carriage on goods from Cooktown. On the range north of the Barron is the only place as yet known where a dray road can be made and this ought to be done as soon as possible.
I will next call your attention to the Barron River which is navigable to the foot of the mountains, carrying a large stream of water during the driest season of the year. After entering the gorges, a splendid waterfall exists, and above that a short distance is another. Within a few miles of the sea, over the Valley of the Barron, and the mountain ranges up to a few miles of the diggings, are the richest agricultural lands on the Australian continent, while the water in the river will furnish a cheap motive power of dispensing with the costly steam engine, and can be further utilized in dry seasons or in seasons of drought, in fertile land, mines, timber, and water, are rarely met with in the most favored portions of the world, and must, in the end, be put to the use for which they were designed by a bountiful Providence.
When returning from the mountains, I found the town of Smithfield (what a name!) had progressed a little, some permanent buildings having been erected. The first met with was a frame house over the door of which was a sign “Pioneer Hotel, Old Bill Smith”; there was also an iron building used as a drapery store, and several others, including a store and public house larger than any of the others.
A post office is wanted in Smithfield; at present, one has to go to Cairns and lose from one to two days to post or receive a letter. A mail service is wanted to the Hodgkinson, instead of having to send by way of Cooktown, as the packers and others travelling on foot to the diggings being papers and letters thither in from four to six days less time than those sent by mail via Cooktown. The Government should set about this at once for the convenience of the public, and no doubt some of the storekeepers would act the part of postmaster, and save the price of a post office by using his store instead, as is commonly done elsewhere.
It is sufficient argument in defence of the healthiness of this region, that, having no doctor, we have not as yet felt the need of one; while the undertaker is compelled to give up his business and take to house-building, as no one requires his services in the former capacity.


Ellen Koch nee Tobin died 6 April 1878 at Smithfield and was buried the day after. She was 43 years of age and died of jungle fever which she contracted 4 days before. 
She had not had children by either of her husbands.

Dalby Herald & Western QLD Advertiser Sat 27 April 1878 p2

and also an obituary in the same paper:

At the time of Ellen Tobin's death, Smithfield was a township in its own right. It was on the banks of the Barron River, which was navigable up to Smithfield. The old cemetery is still there but with only one headstone which is unreadable. It is still gazetted as a Cemetery although no one has been buried there for many years. Cooktown was the registration town for this area of the far north. Cairns births, deaths and marriages were all registered there until about 1886. Nowadays Smithfield is a suburb of Cairns.
Cooktown was the major port past Townsville, when the gold rush started on the banks of the Palmer River in 1872, known as the Palmer field. This area is east of Cooktown and approximately 370 km northwest of Cairns. Thousands of fortune hunters, European and Chinese,  were lured to this area as news of the gold rush spread throughout the country and as soon as news of the discovery reached the south diggers arrived in Cooktown by the shipload.

Cooktown in 1887

Cooktown in 1880

Cooktown today
The goldfield, called the Hodgkinson was discovered in 1876. In contrast to the Palmer goldfield which was rich in ‘Alluvial” gold, the Hodgkinson was a “reefing’ filed and had to be dug out with explosives, then loaded onto carts to be taken to a crushing mill to pound the rocks to get out the gold, all of which took time and money. The towns of Cairns, Smithfield and Port Douglas were founded as a result. With a rich hinterland which Hodgkinson gold was to be the key to its opening, Cairns would completely supersede Cooktown as the major port north of Townsville. Cairns soon had its Hodgkinson trade strangled first by Smithfield then by Port Douglas, and with a seemingly impassable mountain barrier at its back, it withered and almost died. Smithfield, named after William Smith who cut a track across the Lamb Range to Trinity Bay (Cairns) was created as a landing place on the Barron River in 1876, but it was prone to flooding and superceded when better overland routes were created.
On the 15 February 1877 the first land sale was held in Cairns. Ten days later, the township of Smithfield narrowly escaped destruction from a flooded Barron River. After 24 hours of rain, the river reached within 3 feet of the highest part of the town. After severe flooding in 1878 and 1879, Smithfield was practically deserted. On March 8th 1878 a cyclone threatened to wipe Cairns off the map, but somehow the place survived.
Henry Koch was to found in many of these areas during the succeeding years- Cooktown, Smithfield, Cairns and Tinaroo.
He began prospecting at a place called Tinaroo south of Cairns, and the following windfall was reported:

The Capricornian Sat 20 Sept 1879 p15
From Tinaroo
Our correspondent reports that twelve persons have been engaged in the gullies prospecting for gold, and that we believe all are doing fairly; that Mr H. Koch had picked up two nuggets, one weighing six and the other four ounces, at the bottom of a shaft he had constructed.
(Also reported in The Queenslander Sat 27 Sept 1879 p.402)
NB Tinaroo is about 40 kms SW of Cairns

Brisbane Courier Tues 9 Dec 1879 p.2- Crocodile Attack
The following items are from the Cairns Advertiser of the 29th ultimo:-
Mr H. Koch had a very narrow escape from an untimely and cruel death in an encounter with an alligator while fishing at the landing place at Smithfield on Wednesday evening last. It appears that while Mr Koch was so occupied an alligator approached him so near indeed as to have touched his boot, but the bank was too steep for the monster to drag himself up and he slid back into the water to land at another spot, where he faced Mr Koch with a determination to have him of possible. Mr Koch ran behind a log beside a large tree, and it is said the alligator blocked him from getting away, but fortunately, it became entangled amongst some roots and had to draw itself back. During the rencontre , which could not have been a short one, Koch was loudly crying for help, and was heard by Messrs Fretwell and Audaer, who were engaged about a quarter of a mile away, and who immediately ran towards the landing place. Upon their arrival the alligator made for the river, roaring loudly. Dogs were sent into the water to induce the animal to return, and it did, and came on shore a second time when a bullet caused it to retreat, but it is unknown whether it was wounded.

There are various reports of different men named Henry Koch living in Queensland ( at Clermont, and Toowoomba in the newspapers), so it is difficult working out where Henry Koch was living following Ellen's death.
As it appears that Henry Koch may have married again in 1880 in Sydney, it is not certain if the following newspaper accounts apply to him:

Cairns Post Sat 11 June 1887 p.3- Cairns Echoes
Henry Koch tendered for some Divisional Board work. At the first blush we were in a fever- we thought it was our noted Dr. Koch reduced to this. (Famous and beloved doctor in Cairns at the time)

Cairns Post Sat 9 July 1887 p.3
Divisional Board Meeting
Henry Koch applied for £33 in part payment of his work on Norris’ selection, also for two weeks extension. Granted on the motion of Mr Fuller, seconded by Mr Thomas

The last mention of Koch in a newspaper was a letter written to the editor of The Worker (Brisbane) Sat 28 June 1902 p.10:
Henry  Koch (Eton) writes:-
“Whatever measures the House may take to assist the squatting industry, and whatever alternatives may be deemed necessary in the Land Act to induce people to settle on our Western Lands, I hope there is one change in the old Act which will remain unaltered, notwithstanding any attempt to alter it. I refer to the tender clause. As one who has been living for a good few years out West, and wishes to see fair play, I affirm that there is nothing like the tender system to give the man really in want of land a fair chance of acquiring a selection direct from the Government instead of having to buy the same second or third hand, at greatly increased prices, from a private individual,” Under the old ballot system, our correspondent says the odds were 20 to 1 against a bone fide selector acquiring a selection, and “this was conclusively proved during the time the old Act was in force, when men were travelling about from one district to another in vain trying to get a home,” He concludes by saying: “I hope our men in the House, backed up by the influence of the WORKER, will do their best to prevent any alteration in this respect.”

The 1903 Electoral Roll for QLD, District of Herbert, at Eton, shows a Henry Koch listed as a mill overseer. Eton is near Mackay in North QLD. Construction on the North Eton Central Sugar Company Ltd was registered in 1886, and work on construction of the sugar mill began in early 1887. A branch line was laid from Mackay/Eton railway line to the mill site. The mill was officially opened on 1 January 1888 and completed in August 1888, the first government financed Central Mill in Queensland crushed for the first time.  

The above record would appear to relate to a newspaper report in the Daily Mercury (Mackay) Tues 26 June 1906 p2, as it is in the same area:

It is difficult to determine whether this refers to 'our' Henry Koch', or the Koch working at Eton Mill, or the Henry Koch named in the death record below, but it is in the same area as Eton. Clermont is about 150 kms SW of Eton. It would be interesting to know the circumstances for his state of mind. 


A death record has been found for a Henry C. Koch in Sydney- 27 August 1914. Although some of details are pertinent, other details don't match with our Henry Koch.
The following notices relate to the Henry C. Koch who married Ann Gahan in Sydney in 1880.

Catholic Press, Thurs 24 Sept 1914 p30

Sydney Morning Herald, Wed 2 Sept 1914 p10

Sydney Morning Herald, Fri 28 August p5

Catholic Press, Sydney, Thurs 26 August 1915 p28

(NSW death record- 10926/1914). Henry Koch's death record has the following information:
Name: Henry Christopher Koch
Date of Death: 27 Aug 1914
Place: 18 Westbourne Street, Petersham
Occupation: Independent
Age: 83 (b.1831)- burial record has birth: 27 August 1831
Place of Birth: St Louis, USA
Time in Aust Colonies: 62 years- 15 yrs QLD, 47 yrs NSW (?)
Father: Henry Christopher Koch
Occupation: Miller
Marriage 1- unknown; no issue
Marriage 2- Annie Gahan, place: Sydney; age of groom 49 (m.1880); no issue
Informant: Thos Loseby, Nephew, 54 Norton St, Leichhardt.
Cause of Death: Haemorrhage into spinal cord, cerebral effusion
Place of Burial: Roman Catholic Cemetery Rookwood, Catholic Mortuary 2 & 3- Plot: Section E, Row 13, No 1325

Marriage record of 2nd marriage:
1435/1880- Groom: Koch, Christopher Ho; Bride: Gahan, Ann, District: Sydney

The information was supplied by Henry's 'nephew Thos Loseby', so his knowledge of Henry's early life may have been scant, but, this Henry Koch was described as 'late of Queensland' and had remarried, and was a Catholic from America. He was 83 years of age, viz b.1831 so was an appropriate age for Ellen. 
At the time of his death he was living at 18 Westbourne Street, Petersham, just south of the Parramatta Road (for what period of time is not recorded). The record also says he had lived in Queensland for only 15 years, and in NSW for 47 years, so, unless this was a clerical error, or mistaken reporting by Loseby, the record would appear not to match our Henry Koch.
However, the 1903 Electoral Roll above has a Henry Koch listed as a mill overseer at Nth Eton Sugar Mill near Mackay, Nth QLD, and the death record above lists Henry Koch's father as a "miller", so does this suggest a connection? 
The 1913 Electoral Roll has Henry Koch and wife Annie living in Westbourne Street Petersham, with his occupation listed as "retired".

Death of wife Annie Koch in 1919.

A shipping record  in the 'Sydney Morning Herald', Sat 2 May 1914 p24, just four months before the death of Henry Christopher Koch, has the following:

List of passengers sailing by the steamer Ventura for San Francisco via Pago Pago and Honolulu from No 4 Wharf Darling Harbour:
Mr and Mrs Henry Koch.

It is also possible that Henry Koch died somewhere in Queensland and his death was unregistered, or he may have returned to America at an earlier time.

Ellen Koch's properties

Unusually for a woman living in that era, a number of properties in Dalby, Cooktown and Smithfield  were purchased in Ellen's name only. Whether the reason for that was because Koch was not a British citizen is not known.
For some reason Koch could not claim the properties held in Ellen’s name as her heir. Her brother Stephen Tobin claimed all four properties as her ‘Heir-in-law’, the reason for which is not understood.

Stephen Tobin in a deposition attached to his claim, stated:
The document hereunto annexed is an affidavit signed and made by Henry Koch the husband of the said Ellen Koch. When the said Henry Koch discovered that he was not the heir at law of his deceased wife (the said Ellen Koch) he caused the said document to be given to me. I claim that the Estate or Interest of the said Ellen Koch deceased has become transmitted to me as the eldest brother and heir at law of the said Ellen Koch deceased in consequence of the death of the said Ellen Koch Intestate and without issue.
(QLD State Archives, N11667, dated 15/2/94- In the Matter of Deeds of Grant No. 34143, Vol. 306, Folio 153; and No. 30516, v.266, f.26; and No. 33453 v.297 f.214)
One of these properties was at Dalby. The piece of property was Allot 11 of Sec 66 Town of Dalby, Vol 13 Fol 198. This was acquired by Stephen in April 1895. It was transferred to Edward Michael O'Keeffe in August 1895, presumably sold.
There was another lot in the town of Cooktown. Allotment 19 Section 19, which also appears to have been sold.
The other two properties, both in Smithfield, Allotment 6 Section 3 and Allotment 14 Section 2, were transferred under Local Authority Act possibly for non-payment of rates- one in 1924 and the other in 1932. Both of these were after Stephen's death which was in 1904. Stephen left no will, so maybe the family didn't know of their existence and as such they were reclaimed by the Lands Department.

Brisbane Courier 26 Feb 1894 p.8

The Telegraph (Brisbane), Mon 18 March 1895 p8:
NOTICE is hereby given that I intend, on or after the 6th day of April, 1895, in conformity with the provisions of the 95th section of the Real Property Act of 1861, to dispense with the production of Deed of Grant No 5433, in the name of Ellen Koch, for allotment 11 of section 66, town of Dalby, and more particularly described in Register Book volume 13, folio 198, and will then permit a Transmission by Death, No 285271, in favour of Stephen Tobin, of all the land aforesaid, to be entered upon the duplicate of the said Deed of Grant in the Register Book, volume and folio aforesaid, which entry will complete the registration of the said Transmission by death; the aid original Deed of Grant having been either destroyed, lost or mislaid.
J.O. Bourne, Registrar of Titles
Registrar of Titles' Office
Brisbane March 16, 1895

The following article, in 1903, concerns the Koch's Dalby property:

Queensland Figaro Thurs 12 Nov. 1903 p.21
Registrar of Titles’ Office Brisbane 7th Nov 1903
Notice is hereby given that I intend on or after the Twenty-eight day of November 1903, in conformity with the provisions of the 95th section of the ‘Real Property Act of 1861’, to dispense with the production of duplicate Bill of Mortgage No. 7920, from Susan King to Henry Koch, over subdivision 3 of part of allotment 1 of section 46, town of Dalby, being part of the land described in Certificate of Title No 2287, volume 23, folio 55, for the purpose of registering Transfer No. 393203 of the said land made by Henry Koch in favour of Ellen Agnes Sweeney; the said duplicate having been lost, mislaid, or destroyed.
J.O. Bourne Registrar of Titles

An Ellen Agnes O'Neill (b.1880/81) married Hugh Michael Sweeney in 1898 in QLD. Hugh raced horses in the 1880's and was running a pub in Dalby, the Golden Fleece Hotel in the early 1900's. 

© B. A. Butler

email contact: butler1802 @hotmail.com (no spaces)

Link back to Introduction:


Links to all other chapters in this blog:

Tobin and Driscoll family in Tipperary Ireland

Tobin family settle in Gerringong, NSW, Australia in 1857

Tobin family settle in Tallebudgera Queensland in 1870

Life at Tallebudgera for the Tobin Family until 1892

Tobin family move back to NSW and Western Australia- deaths of Stephen and Mary

Stephen Tobin's sister Catherine Tobin- marriage to Timothy Guinea

Bushrangers in the family

Stephen Tobin's sister Ellen Tobin- an Irish female orphan immigrant in 1850

Stephen Tobin's daughter Katherine Tobin- marriage to Adolph Poulsen

Sons of Stephen Tobin and Mary Driscoll

Daughters of Stephen Tobin and Mary Driscoll

Irish Roots of Tobins, Driscolls, O'Briens, and Whites

Refs: Family History South Australia website by Barry Leadbeater


South Australian Emigrant Sources- 2,4, 6,7, 20, 30:

2. Register of Emigrant Labourers Applying for a Free Passage to South Australia 1836-41, PRO CO 386/149-151

4. South Australian Birth Registration Certificates Index 1842-1928,  Genealogy SA, 2012

6. Newspapers - shipping intelligence, imports, obituaries, etc

7. Biographical Index of South Australians 1836-1885, SAGHS, 1986

20. South Australian Marriage Registration Certificates Index 1842-1937,  Genealogy SA, 2012

30. Official passenger lists mainly of immigrants arriving in SA under UK assisted passage 1845-86, SAA, GRG35/48A (A313)

Other sources:
Robert Longhurst, Nerang Shire: A History to 1949, Albert Shire Council 1994, p.62
Robert Longhurst, Tallebudgera to the Tweed, Gold Coast City Council 1996, p.40