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A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–F

Dr GRAEME SKINNER (University of Sydney)


To cite this:

Graeme Skinner (University of Sydney), "A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–F", Australharmony (an online resource toward the history of music and musicians in colonial and early Federation Australia):; accessed 3 April 2020

- F -


Bassoon player, bandsman (12th Regiment)

ASSOCIATIONS: Band of the 12th Regiment


[Advertisement], Empire (4 July 1859), 6

SYDNEY UNIVERSITY MUSICAL FESTIVAL . . . SOLO BASSOON, Mr. J. WINTERBOTTOM. 1st BASSOON - Mr. E. Fahey, 12th Regiment. 2nd BASSOON - Mr. G. Wright, 12th Regiment . . .

FAHEY, Patrick

Drum major (1st/12th Regiment)

Born Ireland, c.1832
Active Australia, from 1854
Died Sydney, NSW, 14 May 1899, aged 67 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

ASSOCIATIONS: Band of the 12th Regiment


"In memoriam", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 May 1901), 1 

FAHEY - In loving memory of Patrick Fahey, who died at his residence, Liverpool-street, Hyde Park, May 14th, 1899, aged 67, late drum major 1st, 12th Regt., N. Mayo Militia, and Irish Rifles. Inserted by his wife and daughter, N, and M. Fahey.

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (1 April 1930), 10

FAHEY - March 31, 1930 at the residence of her son-in-law Edward Palmer, Narrabeen North. Naomi Beulah widow of the late Patrick Fahey Drum-Major of the 12th Regiment East Sussex, England and beloved mother of Mrs. Nellie Carter. of Arncliffe; Mrs Minnie Palmer of Narrabeen North, Edgar Fahey, and the late Edward Fahey, in her 92nd year.


Bass-baritone vocalist, vocal and choral trainer

Arrived Adelaide, SA, 1 July 1894"Albert+Fairbairn" (TROVE search)




"ADELAIDE COLLEGE OF MUSIC", The Advertiser (2 July 1894), 6

"MR. AND MRS. FAIRBAIRN", South Australian Register (28 March 1900), 6 



Active Sydney, NSW, 1855


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (18 July 1855), 1 

SCHOOL OF ARTS. - Miss BASMANN and Mrs. FAIRBURN beg most respectfully to inform their friends and the public that their second CONCERT will take place at the above institution, on WEDNESDAY evening next, 18th July. They will be assisted by the celebrated tenor, Mr. J. Fairchild; Mr. Stewart; and the renowned comic singer, Mr. Frederick Sams; and Miss A. Hart, her second appearance as vocalist.
Duet, Piano - Overture (Barnett)
Cavatina - I'm a merry Zíngara - Miss Basmann
Song - The Flag of the Free - Mr. Stewart
Scotch Song - The Highland Laddie - Mrs. Fairburn
Irish Ballad - Savourneen Deelish - Mr. Fairchild . . .
Piano Solo - Vive tu (Dohler) - Miss Basmann
Ballad (by desire) - I'm thinking now of thee, Jamie - Mrs. Fairburn . . .

FAIRCHILD, Joseph William (senior; ? alias Mr. FAULKNER)

? Tenor vocalist, pianist, piano tuner, pianoforte maker

Born Lambeth, England, 20 June 1810
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 16 November 1852 (per Delgany, from London, 30 July)
Died South Yarra, VIC, 5 July 1885 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

FAIRCHILD, Joseph William (junior 1)

Piano tuner, pianoforte maker, music seller

Born London, England, 1833 (son of Joseph FAIRCHILD senior and Ann GARRETT)
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 27 March 1869 (per Gresham, from England)
Died Sandhurst, VIC, 6 March 1870, aged 37 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

FAIRCHILD, Joseph (junior 2)

? Tenor vocalist, piano tuner and maker

Born Lambeth, London, 27 April 1835 (son of Joseph FAIRCHILD senior and his 2nd wife Elizabeth DUNAWAY)
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 16 November 1852 (per Delgany, from London, 30 July)
(? a Joseph Fairchild died VIC, 1853)


This investigation into the Fairchild family began with attempts to identify the tenor vocalist, variously "Mr. Fairchild", "Mr. J. Fairchild", active in Sydney and Bathurst, NSW, in 1854-55, and at Sandhurst/Bendigo, in 1858-59. Perhaps the most likely option is that the vocalist and piano-maker were the same person, Joseph Fairchild senior. However, another option that cannot yet be closed off, is that the singer was his son by his second marriage, a second Joseph junior.


1841 England Census; Middlesex, St. Pancras, Regents Park, District 4, shedule 27, 47

Mary Street / Joseph Fairchild / 30 / Pianoforte maker
Elizabeth [Fairchild] / 25
Joseph [Fairchild] / 6
Elizabeth [Fairchild] / 3
Frederick [Fairchild] / 19 months
Jane [Fairchild] / n.k.

? "INSOLVENT DEBTORS COURT, JUNE 30", Morning Advertiser (1 July 1848), 4

. . . IN RE JOSEPH FAIRCHILD. This insolvent, known by the name of Faulkner, one of the Ethiopian Serenaders, was opposed by Mr. Peel, a printer, and a Mr. Winch. The insolvent had put Mr. Peel to 48l. law costs in an action on debt of 31l., and had, it was alleged, improperly contracted a debt to Mr. Winch. The Court remanded the insolvent to the full period of the discretionary clause, viz., six months.

"POLICE. MANSION HOUSE", London Evening Standard (8 August 1851), 4

Messrs. William and Edward Thomas, of Leadenhall-street, auctioneers, appeared before Sir Peter Laurie, upon a summons "for that they, being brokers and dealers in second hand property, were in the possession of certain goods, viz., a pianoforte, unlawfully obtained from Mr. Joseph Fairchild, of High Holborn, pianoforte-maker, and unlawfully deposited with them by a person named Metz" . . . Mr. Joseph Fairchild, the complainant, said, - In the month of June last an application was made to me by Mr. Metz for the hire of a pianoforte, and I agreed to let him have one on hire at 12s. a month I sent it to his house on the 17th of June. The book which I produce purports to be the receipt for the pianoforte. I received 12s. in advance on the same day, and on the 17th of July I went again for another 12s. for another month's hire. I then ascertained that the pianoforte was not in the house. I demanded it, and did not succeed in getting possession of it. In consequence of information which reached me I went to the auction-rooms of the defendants. My name was on the pianoforte when I parted with it, but it bas since been obliterated, and the part on which the name was inscribed has been newly polished. The value of the instrument was 14l. A Mr. Webb went with me to the auction-rooms. On Monday last I saw Mr. E. Thomas at his place of business, and I there saw my pianoforte, which has upon it the number corresponding with the number in my book. I required the delivery of it to me. He said that he could not part with it, having advanced 16l. upon it. I asked him what inquiries he had made respecting Metz, and he replied that he was perfectly satisfied with the inquiries he had instituted. Cross-examined. - I did not know Metz till I lent the pianoforte. Nothing was said to Metz about the sale. The purchase of it was never mentioned. I had made inquiries about the respectability of Metz. I have never seen him since I lent the instrument to him. He applied to Mr. Webb for another pianoforte three weeks after he had received mine. Mr. Webb, I believe, had the same reference. I had no reason to believe that Mr. Webb's pianoforte was of my make. I learned from Mr. Webb that Metz had got another pianoforte. Mr. Thomas told me that my pianoforte and another had been brought to bim for sale. I do not recollect that he said my pianoforte was bought in at 15l. I had not written for payment of the value of the piano. Mr. Metz is away, and I cannot find him. Nobody was present when Metz came to borrow the instrument from me . . .

"POLICE. MANSION HOUSE", London Evening Standard (17 October 1851), 4

Josiah Westley, bookbinder of Blackfriars, was brought . . . upon charges of having forged bills of exchange . . .
[Witness statement] Mr. Joseph Fairchild, jun.: I reside with my father, who carries on the business of a pianoforte maker at No. 200, High Holborn. We have lived there a little more than three years . . .

[Advertisemment], Empire (30 January 1854), 1 

"MUSICAL NOTICE", Bathurst Free Press and Mining Journal (21 July 1855), 2 

We are happy to be able to inform our readers that Mr. Fairchild who has gained some celebrity as a Tenor singer at the different concerts in Sydney, Miss Bassman a pianist and vocalist of high standing and Madamoiselle Lorette, from the Royal Academy of music, London, and late of the Victoria Theatre, Sydney, intend shortly visiting Bathurst and the adjacent towns, the particulars of which will be advertised in our columns. This company have also secured an addition in the person of Mr. Frederic Sams, a celebrated comic singer, delineator and comedian, from the Melbourne and Geelong theatres, who will appear in character in some of his favourite songs, and extravaganzas. - Communicated.

"PUBLIC AMUSEMENTS IN BATHURST", Bathurst Free Press and Mining Journal (15 September 1855), 2 

[2 advertisements], Bathurst Free Press and Mining Journal (24 November 1855), 3 

. . . Pianofortes Tuned, &.c. J. FAIRCHILD (practical tuner and Pianoforte maker) will remain only a few days in Bathurst . . . Terms for tuning within two miles of Bathurst, one guinea.

"SHAMROCK CONCERT HALL", Bendigo Advertiser (11 January 1855), 3 

. . . Madame Vitelli . . . was assisted by Messrs. Thatcher and Fairchild, who materially enhanced the success of the evening's entertainment. The latter gentleman is almost an entire stranger on Bendigo, but as he evidently is, if not a first class, at any rate a really good singer, we trust that we shall have many more opportunities of hearing him . . .

"THE CORONER", The Age (26 March 1857), 5 

. . . Edwin Fairchild, son of Mr. Joseph Fairchild, piano-forte maker, Prahran, stated that he, Frank Howard, and deceased, were in the South Park the previous afternoon shooting birds with a gun which belonged to his brother . . .

"VICTORIA THEATRE", Bendigo Advertiser (15 August 1859), 3 

. . . The singing of Mrs. Stone, both in the comic line and characteristic songs, is much admired both in solo and concerted pieces. Mr. Leeman, in the RUSSEL style of descriptive music, still stands pre-eminent for his very successful treatment, of this class of composition. Mr. Fairchild, a tenor vocalist of considerable professional reputation, is also engaged here, and forms an additional attraction to the lovers of harmony. The entertainment in its entirety forms a very pleasant evening's amusement . . .

1860, marriages solemnized at St. Pancras's Church in the Parish of St. Pancras

260 / March 10 / Joseph William Fairchild / Musical Instrument Maker / College Pl. [St. Pancras] / [father] Joseph Fairchild / Musical Instrument maker / Emily Totterdell / [father] George Totterdell / Oil & Colour man

The Victoria Post Office directory (1866), 239

[Sandhurst] . . . Fairchild, Joseph, pianoforte maker, Williamson st

"INTERCOLONIAL AND LOCAL EXHIBITION", Bendigo Advertiser (18 August 1866), 2 

Letter, from Joseph Fairchild senior, Sandhurst, VIC, to Joseph Fairchild junior; family collections

Sandhurst March 18, 1868 / My Dear Joseph, I have not much to say, my opinion about Australia you have had, but I think by this last you do not care much about coming at all events it could not be done just yet. You have new orders for three P.F.s . . . The one from Squires is an improvement on the last in fact with a few alterations they ought to do a good trade. I have not used the name plates. The usual is in the enclosed note which please deliver. I will send order for the 7 octave at £19 net next mail but as a rule I should not like any Instrument inferior to the last by Squires . . . With love to you all, . . . Your affectionate Father, Jos. Fairchild.

ASSOCIATIONS: Probably Henry Squire, piano maker of London, active from c.1860

. . . Joshua Fairchild, Sandhurst - Piano . . . [sic]

Passangers on the Gresham, from Plymouth, England, landed at Melbourne, VIC, 27 March 1869

Fairchild, Joseph / 36 / Piano forte maker
[Fairchild], Emily / 30; Emily / 7; Joseph / 5; Fredk / 4; Sidney / 2; George / Inft

"DEATHS IN THE HOSPITAL", Bendigo Advertiser (7 March 1870), 2 

. . . Joseph Fairchild, pianoforte-maker, who has been an inmate of the hospital since 8th February, died there yesterday from disease of the liver . . .

[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (26 June 1875), 3 

WANTED KNOWN - That J. Fairchild, music seller, Williamson-street, is Retiring from Business. The valuable stock of Pianofortes, Harmoniums, &c., will be Sold at greatly Reduced Prices. A very large stock of Concertinas - English, German, and Anglo-German, will be sold under cost. Flutes, Violins, &c., &c., equally cheap. Music at less than half-price. The premises to be sold or let.

[Advertisement], Bendigo Advertiser (4 August 1876), 3 

Other resources:

Thou art gone from my gaze; ballad, as sung by Mr. J. Fairchild, composed by George Linley, Esq. (Sydney: H. Marsh & Co., [1854]) (DIGITISED)

Our national defences, sung by Mr. J. Fairchild . . . (Sydney: H. Marsh & Co., [1854]) 


Actor, singer, delineator of Irish characters

Active Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), by January 1836
Active Sydney, NSW, from March 1838
Died ? after 1852 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Though principally an actor, Falchon was regularly programmed to sing between or within the pieces at Hobart and Sydney theatres during the 1830s and 1840s. He also sang in Isaac Nathan's Oratorio in Sydney in June 1841. His last advertised benefit was in Launceston in May 1851. His wife, Anne Falchon, was also an actor.


[Advertisement], Colonial Times (5 January 1836), 3

[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 March 1838), 2

[Advertisement], The Courier (15 December 1840), 3

"The Oratorio", The Sydney Monitor (2 July 1841), 2

"Insolvent Debtors' Court", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (30 November 1841), 2


[Advertisement], The Melbourne Argus (9 April 1847), 2

"Olympic Theatre", The Cornwall Chronicle (21 May 1851), 317

Departures, from Launceston, per City of Melbourne, for Melbourne, 18 April 1852; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:547538; POL220/1/1 p653 

"SOME UNRECORDED PASSAGES IN THE HISTORY OF VAN DIEMEN'S LAND (From a Very Old Stager)", The Courier (25 April 1854), 2

. . . It would be, however, painful to narrate the reverses which befel the performers; the career of Nesbit, Falchon, and others are well known, and the only one remaining "of the old school" is ekeing out a miserable existence in the north, although his talents as an actor, if his conduct was regulated by the rules of prudence, would rank him high in the public favour; others have turned their attention to the industrial arts, and some have tried their fortunes and been successful in the "golden lands" across the Straits . . .

"THEATRE ROYAL", Tasmanian Morning Herald (13 November 1866), 2 

. . . Many years back this piece used to be a great favorite with the Hobart Town Theatre goers, the principal character, Paddy Murphy, being played by the the popular delineator of Irish character, Mr. Falchon. Poor Falchon has now passed away from this worldly stage after undergoing many ups and downs. Mr. Collins reminds us of our old friend in many of his characters, especially in Paddy Murphy; he, however, poor fellow was wanting in that finished style of acting which is one of the great characteristics of our present comedian . . .



Born c.1860
Active Bungendore, NSW, by 1887
Died Dudley, NSW, 3 May 1930, aged 70


"BUNGENDORE BAND", Goulburn Evening Penny Post (17 March 1887), 4

On last Thursday evening the members of the above band, under the leader ship of Mr. F. Falconer, played several well executed pieces of music on the flat opposite the   Lake George Hotel. A great many persons were present, and expressed themselves well pleased with the progress made by the members of the band.

"BUNGENDORE", Goulburn Evening Penny Post (31 March 1898), 4

"BUNGENDORE", Goulburn Herald (4 January 1899), 4 

LAKE GEORGE BAND. - I nearly forgot to mention that on Christmas Eve the Lake George Band, under the leadership of Mr. F. S. Falconer, played Christmas carols in different parts of the town. The music was excellent and much appreciated by the inhabitants.

FALCONER, Travers (James Travers FALCONER)

Professor of music, musician

Born Balmain, NSW, 1860 [2398/1860]
Died McMahon's Point, NSW, 20 February 1938


= LAMBERT, Nellie (Ethel)


"Observations", Balmain Observer (24 March 1888), 1

A sequestration order on petition of creditors was made in the Bankruptcy Court on Monday, in the estate of Travers Falconer, Wharf-road, Balmain, professor of music. Mr. Lloyd official assignee.

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 February 1938), 10


FANING, Edward (Edward Thomas Reynolds FANING; Mr. FANING; FANNING)

Professor of Music, violinist, bandleader, composer

Born ? Jersey, c. 1819, son of Charles M. FANING and Mary FANING
Married Catherine SULLIVAN, NSW, 1843
Active Maitland, NSW, by c. 1843/4
Died Lambton, NSW, 27 August 1870 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

FANING, Charles Frederick

Musician, violinist

Born NSW, c. 1844/45; son of Edward and Catherine FANING
Died Newcastle, NSW, 12 April 1879, aged 35 years

FANING, Edward (junior)


Born NSW, c. 1854, son of Edward FANING and Catherine SULLIVAN
Died Newcastle, NSA, 27 March 1891, aged 37

FANING, Charles (junior)

Vocalist, comedian

Born NSW, 1864, son of Charles Frederick FANING and Catherine JONES
Died South Africa, 6 December 1915


According to his obituary in The Maitland Mercury, Faning was "justly termed the father of music in this district". At his burial, a band was formed numbering 56 district musicians to play The dead march from Saul. Fanning was already active as director of "the Orchestra" at the Maitland Amateur Theatre in May 1844, and continued throughout that season. In June he also directed his new teetotal band at a meeting of the Total Abstinence Society. Again for the Society in September 1845, the Mercury reported:

the evening was much enlivened by the exquisite performance of that prince of fiddlers, Mr. Fanning.

At the opening night of the Queen's Theatre, West Maitland, in August 1856, it was advertised that there was to be:

the new overture, by Mr. Faning, composed expressly for this occasion, entitled "The Queen's".


[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (27 April 1844), 3

ON MONDAY, 6th May next, the Select Company of Amateurs will perform Townley's celebrated Farce of
After which, a variety of SONGS, including an ORIGINAL ONE composed expressly for this occasion.
The whole to conclude with the comic Farce of
Several New Scenes have been painted, and the Orchestra
Will be under the direction of Mr. Fanning . . .

"AMATEUR THEATRICALS", The Maitland Mercury (11 May 1844), 2

"TOTAL ABSTINENCE SOCIETY", The Maitland Mercury (15 June 1844), 2

"SINGLETON", The Maitland Mercury (20 September 1845), 3

"SINGLETON", The Maitland Mercury (14 February 1846), 2

. . . Mr. Fanning, we must say, contributed not a little to enliven the hilarity of the occasion; and from the manner in which he made his violin discourse sweet music, we almost fancied that Orpheus had visited the Ark of Peace and had become a teetotaller.

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (16 December 1846), 3

"Government Gazette", The Maitland Mercury (25 December 1850), 4

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (19 August 1856), 3

"MAINTENANCE", The Maitland Mercury (13 December 1859), 3

Catherine Faning summoned Edward Faning before the bench, at West Maitland, yesterday, for maintenance. This case was postponed till yesterday for the evidence of defendant's witness. The defendant said the witness declined to appear. The bench adjudged defendant to pay 5s. a week for the maintenance of complainant, to commence yesterday.

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (30 December 1865), 1

"DEATH", The Newcastle Chronicle (30 August 1870), 2 

DEATH. FANING. - On the 27th August, at his residence, Old Lambton, MR. EDWARD THOMAS REYNOLDS FANING, aged 51 years. Sydney papers please copy.

"DEATH OF MR. EDWARD FANING", The Maitland Mercury (1 September 1870), 3

Old residents of this district, and especially all who have ever taken an interest in musical matters, will read with sincere regret of the death of Mr. Edward Faning, which took place at Lambton, on Saturday last. Mr. Faning had been ailing for some time past, but fatal results were not apprehended until a few days before his death, when his complaint turned to dropsy, and notwithstanding the unremitting attention of his medical attendant, he expired as above stated. Mr. Faning has been justly termed the father of music in this district. In all matters where the art he professed was in question he took a deep interest, and among the many musicians on the Hunter (who in a great measure owe to Mr Faning's teaching the knowledge they possess), there should be a general feeling of sorrow that one so useful should have been taken away. The remains of the deceased were interred in the Roman Catholic cemetery on Monday after noon, and were followed to the grave by a large number of persons. Musicians from all parts of the district testified the respect they entertained for the memory of the deceased, by forming a band, numbering in all fifty six performers, and playing the Dead March in Saul in front of the body. At the grave the burial service was read by the Rev. Father Ryan.

[Advertisement], The Newcastle Chronicle (30 August 1870), 1 

ALLOW ME to tender my sincere and heartfelt THANKS to the Members of the LAMBTON BAND, Mr. Blimm, Mr. Prince, the Members of the Waratah Band, the Newcastle Amateurs and Professionals, and the public of the mining districts, and the city generally, for the marks of respect and esteem accorded to my late father, Mr. Edward Faning, both before and after his death. Again heartily thanking them in a manner I cannot explain in an advertisement, I have the honor to remain, respectfully, CHARLES F. FANING.

"THE LATE MR. EDWARD FANING THE MUSICIAN", Empire (3 October 1871), 2

"DEATH", Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (12 April 1879), 4 

FANING. - On April 10th, at his residence, Market Square, Newcastle, CHARLES FREDERICK FANING, Compositor, aged 35 years.

"The Late Monsignor Lynch", The Maitland Mercury (19 February 1884), 4

"AN ORIGINAL SONG", The Maitland Mercury (24 December 1892), 5s

"THE LATE CHARLES FANING", Sunday Times (16 January 1916), 6 

Charles Faning, who died in South Africa on December 6 last, was the son of the late Mr. Charles Faning, musician, of Newcastle. For thirty years he has been before the theatrical public in Australia, England, and South Africa as a comedian. Stage efforts commenced early - at 16 years of age - when he took a leading part in the entertainments in connection with St. Bridget's Church. His first big professional hit was at the Sydney Alhambra. Here he stayed for years, and also had a company of his own at the Protestant Hall. Mr. Faning visited all parts of Australia, and was for a long time with Harry Rickards' Tivoli Company. In 1900 he went to England, and later made a big name at the Brighton Alhambra as an Australian entertainer. His next great success was achieved in South Africa, where he remained until his death last month.

Bibliography and resources:

Garrett Prestage, "Catherine Sullivan", Convict tales

Catherine SULLIVAN, aged 16, was a nurse's girl, who was tried in Middlesex for larceny and transported for seven years. In 1840 she was indicted for stealing a shirt, but she eventually received her ticket of leave in 1842 in Maitland. Not long thereafter she married Edward Fanning, a well-known musician in the Hunter, but by 1860 it appears their marriage was at an end. Catherine appears to have spent her remaining years in and out of prison in Maitland and Newcastle, and she eventually died in Maitland Gaol in 1887.

Helen English, "Music and musicians and their impact on the emerging music making of the Hunter Valley, 1840-1880", in Dorottya Fabian and John Napier (eds), Diversity in Australia's music: themes past, present, and for the future (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2018), 73-100 (PREVIEW)

FANNING, Bernard ("Barney the blind fiddler")

Violinist, blind fiddler (at the Crooked Billet Inn)

Died Bathurst, NSW, September 1851


"INQUEST", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 September 1851), 4s

On Tuesday, the 16th instant, an inquisition was held by Captain Sutherland, at the Crooked Billet Inn, Bathurst, on view of the body of Bernard Fanning, who had been found dead with his throat cut, on the afternoon of the previous day. The evidence of the different witnesses who were examined, showed that the deceased was living, as fiddler, at the Crooked Billet, and that on the last Sunday night he was ill after drink, and had been to Dr. Machattie, who administered some medicine to him. After dinner on Monday, he obtained from the cook some hot water, a razor, and looking-glass; and after having shaved himself he went into the kitchen, which he shortly left, and was about an hour or an hour and a half afterwards found lying on the floor of a little bed-room with his throat cut, he being then quite dead. When found his throat was frightfully gashed, and the floor of the room was deluged with blood. The razor was lying open on the floor alongside of him, and on a wooden bench was the little looking-glass raised up against a brick, both the razor and looking-glass were covered with blood. The deceased was much addicted to drinking, and was deposed to by one witness as being known by the name of Barney, and by another as being commonly called the blind fiddler. Dr. Machattie deposed, that on Sunday night last, about twelve o'clock, the deceased came to his house, and was then suffering from delirium tremens. He seemed to be in great despair, and said he had been drinking very hard for some time past. He prescribed for him, and deceased then went away; he returned next day, and seemed better, and he did not see him again until he was dead. On examining the body he found a deep cut on the left side of the neck, penetrating through the skin, cellular tissue, and muscles; the left carotid artery was also cut, and the larynx was cut through. He had no doubt that death was produced by the above described injuries, as when the carotid artery is cut through it is always fatal, from the hemorrhage that ensues, except the artery is instantly tied. The deceased, he believed, told him his name was Bernard Fanning. The wound had been made by a sharp cutting instrument, such as a razor, and might have been inflicted by his own hand. The jury returned for their verdict, that the deceased cut his throat whilst in a state of insanity, during a fit of delirium tremens, produced by continued intemperance.


Bass baritone vocalist

Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1870
Died Waverley, NSW, 10 March 1916, aged 69


[2 advertisements], The Argus (4 May 1871), 8

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 March 1916), 16

"DEATH OF MR. EDWARD FARLEY", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 March 1916), 8

Old operagoers will regret to learn of the death of Edward Farley which occurred at his residence Canberra, Ashton street, Waverley on Friday evening. His last stage appearance was as Monthalbor, the grizzled drum major in William Anderson's production of "La Fille du Tambour Major" at the Theatre Royal in February 1906 after which he was seen at his benefit at the Royal Standard Theatre at the end of 1907. The veteran basso or baritone, for the range of his voice enabled him to sing either class of operatic character effectively, had been ill for some years. The late Edward Farley (whose surname was originally Hughes) was born in Wales and began in the chorus of the Carl Rosa Company, but his grand opera career in Australia dates from 1870 at the Melbourne Theatre Royal, and the following year he made a hit in opera-bouffe as General Boom in "The Grand Duchess". Under Lyster he created several then famous roles in French opera-bouffe. In 1875 Mr. Farley visited the United States, returned here with Emily Soldene's opera-bouffe combination in 1876; he was much associated with Mr. and Mrs. Henry Bracy and he then sang in London for a time with D'Oyley Carte's English Opera Company. Whilst in England, the baritone appeared as Escamillo to the Carmen of Emily Soldene, and then he returned to Australia singing for many years with Lyster's Italian Opera Company and with the Montague-Turner English Opera Company, varied by a long tour of India and the East with Emily Melville's company, and by residence as a teacher in Newcastle (New South Wales) until he settled down in this city. Mr Farley, who possessed a fine voice, sang frequently in oratorio before his final retirement . . .

Associated works:

The ship in full sail (a jovial song sung with unbounded applause by Edward Farley; words and music by Fearnleigh L. Montague) (Melbourne: Allan & Co. (Wilkies), [1876]) 


Bass vocalist, pianist

Born Hoxton, London, England, 26 May 1820; son of John and Mary SMITH
Married Sophia BUTTERWORTH, by c. 1857
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 27 June 1856 (per James Baines, from Liverpool, England, 6 April)
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 30 June 1856 (per London, from Melbourne, 28 June)
Departed Geelong, VIC, 4 November 1865 (per Giant's Causeway, for England)
Died London, England, 12 February 1880, "aged 60" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Robert Farquharson, c.1860 (Davies & Co., Melbourne); State Library of Victoria


According of Boase, Robert Farquharson Smith was apprenticed to James Thomas Harris, chorus-master of Drury Lane, perhaps around the same time that his almost extact contemporary, Eliza Poole, was likewise apprenticed to Harris in 1829. Boase also placed him thereafter among the children who sang at the coronation of William IV on 8 September 1831.

He was living with his elder brother John Robert Smith at Dartford, Kent, at the time of the 1841 census, already describing himself as a "professor of music". From 1842, he performed in London and the south as Mr. R. F. Smith, and after 1845 increasingly often as Mr. Farquharson Smith.

In 1853 he began appearing in Sim Reeves's opera troupe, along with his later Australian colleague, Julia Harland.

He arrived in Australia in 1856 as bass of the touring English Opera Company formed by Harland and her husband, William Hoskins, with tenor Walter Sherwin, and musical director Linly Norman. Though much feted by city audiences, latterly as a principal with the Lyster Opera Company, he also toured widely in regional areas, and appeared in country concerts at Wangaratta and Beechworth with Sherwin and Maria Carandini less than a month before his final departure from Melbourne in November 1865.


Baptisms solemnized in the parish of St. Leonard, Shoreditch . . . in the year 1820; register 1820-21, page 151 

No. 1206 [Baptised] 11 [Aug't] / Robert Farquharson / [son of] John & Mary / Smith / Moneyers Street / Feather manufacturer / [born] 26 May 1820

1841 English census, Dartford, Kent, page 47; UK archives, HO 107 / 482 / 2 

John R't Smith / 35 / Lawyer's clerk
Ann Hall [Smith] / 21 . . .
Robert F. Smith / 21 / Profs'r of Music

[Advertisement], The morning post [London, England] (14 September 1842), 1

ROYAL ADELAIDE GALLERY, Adelaide-street, Lowther Arcade, Strand . . . every EVENING. - A GRAND MUSICAL PROMENADE . . . Musical director and conductor, Mr. T. Julian Adams, who presides at the grand pianoforte. Vocalists - Mrs. Wilson, Miss Thornton, Miss Taylor, Mr. F. Martin, and Mr. R. F. Smith. Performances this evening and tomorrow evening - Negri's selection from Meyerbeer's opera of Robert le Diable . . .


The concert of Mr. Genge, on Monday evening, attracted a very full attendance. Many glees and chorusses were performed on this occasion with a precision of execution which elicited repeated plaudits from the auditors. Mr. R. F. Smith ably presided at the piampoforte, and also contributed his quota to the entertainment by several vocal efforts . . .

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in London and Sporting Chronicle (20 April 1845), 1

CROSBY HALL, Bishopsgate-street Mr. GEORGE GENGE respectfully announces that his ANNUAL CONCERT, will take place in the above Hall, on WEDNESDAY evening, April 23, 1845 . . . Principal vocalists: Miss A. Williams, Miss M. Williams, Mrs. C. Horn, Miss Thornton, Miss O'Brien, Miss Emily Badger, Mr. N. J. Sporle, Mr. F. N. Crouch, Mr. Henry Smith (from America), Mr. Ransford, Mr. Shoubridge, Mr. Rennie, Mr. R. F. Smith, Mr. Hutchinson, Mr. G. Genge, and Mr. John Parry. Concertina: Mr. G. Case. Grand Pianoforte: Miss Julia Warman. In the course of the evening will performed for the first time, Donizetti's Opera, "L'Elesir d'Amore," arranged for four voices, by Mr. R. F. Smith. Conductor: Mr. R. Farquharson Smith . . .

"LITERARY INSTITUTION", West Kent Guardian (26 April 1845), 5

The vocal entertainment' followed by Cox's dissolving views, on Tuesday evening [22 April], was a firstrate and splendid affair. The Ship on Fire, and the Maniac, sung by Mr. R. F. Smith, quite in the style of Russell, that celebrated vocalist, each accompanied by an appropriate illustration in lime-light, was a novel idea, and admirably performed . . .

"MESSRS. BRUTON AND MARTIN'S CONCERT", Morning Advertiser [London] (28 March 1848), 3

Last night a concert, for the benefit of these gentlemen, took place at the National Hall, Holborn . . . Mr. Farquharson Smith presided at the pianoforte, and, notwithstanding the wetness of the evening, there was large audience present . . .

MISS FANNY WHEADON'S CONCERT, CROSBY HALL", The era (25 February 1849), 11

. . . Mr. Genge's "Sally in our Alley," created a storm of applause; and upon its being required for repetition, "Free as the air" was substituted; the extemporaneous accompaniments to this song, by Mr. Farquharson Smith, were really clever and musician-like - the singer and the player acted in admirable concert, and in neither case was the modesty of nature overstepped. Mr. F. Smith, both from his singing and conducting, is a very useful and valuable man in any department of the concert room. "Philip the Falconer" (Mr. Genge), was redemanded; likewise "The Lugger" (Mr. Smith) . . .

1851, 30 March, English census, Surrey, Camberwell, St. George; UK archives, HO 107 / 1582 

47 Peckham Grove / Robert F. Smith / Head / 30 / Professor of Music / [born] Middlesex London Sophia [Smith] / Wife / 32 / [born Middlesex London]
Edwin [Smith] / Son / 3 / [born] Middlesex London
William / Son / 1 / [born] Middlesex London
Ann Macfarlane / Serv / 19 . . .

"WINCHESTER", The era (9 October 1853), 10

Mr. and Mrs. Sims Reeves, Mr. Farquharson Smith, Mr. G. Case, and M. Emile Prudent, the eminent pianist, who have lately commenced a tour in the west, gave a grand concert here on Wednesday last, at St. John's Room, which was attended by one of the most crowded and fashionable audiences this season. Our English tenor was in admirable voice, and most fully sustained his well-carned name. Prudent (who made his faist appearance here) delighted us by the elegance and beauty of his style. Mrs. Reeves was encored in the Scotch song of "There's nae luck aboot the house," and a similar compliment was paid to Mr. Farquharson Smith for his interpretation of John Parry's "Blue Beard" . . . Mr. J. Smith presided at the pianoforte.

[News], The globe (7 November 1853), 2

An English opera company, comprising Messrs. Reeves, Weiss, Farquharson Smith, Horncastle, Manvers, and Mrs. Sims Reeves and Miss Julia Harland, commence the season at Birmingham this evening.

"GLOBE LODGE (No. 23)", The era (16 July 1854), 13

The summer festival of the members of this Lodge was celebrated at the Star and Garter, Richmond, on Wednesday . . . The musical arrangements were conducted by Br. Perren, assisted by Brs. Genge and Farquharson (better known as Farquharson Smith). A selection from William Tell was rendered by Brs. Farquharson and Perren, with a fervour and beauty we have rarely heard equalled - never excelled . . .

"LYCEUM THEATRE", The musical world (19 August 1854), 555 

aking advantage of the recess, Mr. Allcroft engaged Mr. and Mrs. Sims Beeves for a series of three farewell performances in English opera previous to their departure for the provinces. These commenced on Wednesday with Balfe's Bohemian Girl, which not having been heard in London for a long time was almost as good as a novelty . . . Besides Mr. and Mrs. Sims Reeves, Mr. Weiss, and Mr. Manvers, the cast included Miss Julia Harland as the Gipsy Queen, and Mr. Farquharson as Devilshoof . . .

"HAYMARKET", The athenaeum (9 June 1855), 680 

After a series of successful performances of those translated French and Italian operas, in which Mr. and Mrs. Sims Reeves have gained well-deserved popularity, Mr. Buckstone produced on Saturday last a new opera, entitled "The Gnome of Hartzberg," -the words of which are by Mr. Fitzball, the music by Mr. Henry Smart . . . High praise is due to Mr. and Mrs. Sims Reeves, Mr. Weiss, Miss H. Gordon, Mr. W. Farren, Mr. Manvers, and Mr. Farquharson for the good will and nerve brought by them to bear on the performance . . .

"Covent-Garden", The Era (24 February 1856), 10

Mr. Anderson is now courting success in a new direction . . . He has obtained an extension of tenancy from the lessee of the Royal Italian Opera, and plunges, as we have intimated, into the realms of music. The provision that he has made for the embodiment of the operas which he contemplates producing consists of Madame Lucy Escott, Mr. Henry Haigh, Mr. Durand, and Mr. Farquharson . . . Mr. Farquharson, now that Stretton has vanished from the stage, has appropriated the part of Devilshoof solely to himself; and he, too, like his predecessor, has so far obtained the ear and the eye of the public, that he can indulge in any extemporaneous escapade without awakening resentment. He, however, possesses much natural humour, and the laughter he generates is by no means without comic warrant. The choral force is tolerable, and as all chorus singers are familiar with the music of Balfe's pleasant opera, there was not much to complain of on this score. The orchestra, we presume, has been enlarged for the more important labours that now devolve upon it. Mr. Edward Loder conducts . . .

"THEATRICAL ARTISTES FOR AUSTRALIA", The morning chronicle (7 April 1856), 3

Mr. J. H. Wilton has engaged a corps of theatrical artistes, who will take their departure for Australia in the ship James Baines, which was expected to sail from Liverpool for Melbourne on Sunday morning. They have been engaged for the Theatre Royal, Melbourne, and will be accompanied by Mr. Black, the lessee and builder of that establishment, and by Mr. W. N. Lyons, Mr. Wilton's locum tenens. The artistes already engaged by Mr. Wilton are Miss Fitzpatrick, Miss Julia Harland, Mr. Hoskins, Mr. Farquharson, Mr. Sherwin, and Mr. Linley Norman, Mddle. d'Antoine, and Mons. Martin. Mr. Wilton is also in treaty for an Australian trip, with Mr. Anderson, Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Wallack, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Dillon, and Miss Cushman, Mr. Charles Matthews having for the present declined Mr. Wilton's offer, on the score of the ill-health of his wife (Madame Vestris.)

Australia (from 27 June 1856):

"THEATRICAL", The Argus (27 June 1856), 5 

By the James Baines the following members of the musical and theatrical professions have arrived: - Miss Julia Harland, soprano; Mr. Walter Sherwin, tenor; and Mr. Robert Farquharson, bass. Mr. Linley Inman has accompanied these artistes as musical director and conductor, and they bring with them a repertory of thirty operas, with dresses and personal appointments complete. Mr. Hoskins, a light comedian of ability, formerly attached to the Sadler's Wells Theatre, also forms part of the troupe, and will proceed forthwith to Sydney, where they are under engagement for the present.


June 27 - James Baines, R.M, ship, 2315 tons, C. McDonald, from Liverpool 6th April . . .

"THEATRICAL AND MUSICAL", The Age (28 June 1856), 3 

The James Baines, among other valuable freights has brought . . . Miss Julia Harland, soprano; Mr. Walter Sherwin, tenor; and Mr Robert Farquharson; bass. A private letter from London informs us, in reference to this latter gentleman, that "Melbourne will find him an acquisition, and that he stands well in his profession" - we do not doubt that they all do . . .

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Age (28 June 1856), 2 

JUNE 30. -London (s.), 700 tons, Captain Watts, from Melbourne 28th instant. Passengers . . . Miss Harland, Mrs. Farquharson . . . Messrs. . . . Norman, Hoskins, Sherwin, Farquharson . . .

"ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 July 1856), 5 

The opera season commenced on the evening of Tuesday last, with Bellini's never-tiring "La Sonnambula." The occasion introduced to the Sydney public the new company who arrived in this colony, per the James Baines. The opera was supported in a manner worthy the patronage of "the lovers of the divine art." The performance being indebted for its success to a combination of talent, rather than to individual display. The musical firmament resembled a galaxy of lesser luminaries, unattended with any "bright particular star." The result of this union caused an evenness and compactness that perhaps has not been so complete and finished on any former representation. The prima donna, Miss Julia Harland, is a lady possessing considerable musical qualifications, and the impression she made as Amina was attended with success, both decided and enthusiastic. She was well supported by Mr. Walter Sherwin, as Elvino; his voice is a rich tenor, of good compass, flexibility, and sweetness. Although in those scenes where he doubts the fidelity of Amina, she sang with expression and feeling, and gave evidence of much study and careful training, he nevertheless lacked somewhat the skill of the dramatic artiste, and would tender the role more effectively by using a greater amount of earnestness and energy in his impersonation. Mr. Farquharson, as the "Count Rodolpho," enlisted the audience entirely in his favour. His voice is a fine basso, and his style artistic and descriptive . . .

"THEATRE ROYAL. OUR LYCEUYM. ENGLISH OPERA", The Argus (1 September 1856), 5 

The Queen's Theatre, re-baptized under the title of "Our Lyceum," opens this evening with an English operatic troupe, under the management of Mr. John Black. The opera selected for the occasion is the "Bride of Lammermoor," and it will be the first time Donizetti's celebrated work has been presented in an English dress to a Victorian audience. Having had the advantage of witnessing a rehearsal we are enabled to give as an opinion that success will be found to be merited by the new arrivals, and we therefore look to see it achieved. Miss Julia Harland, the prima donna, is a daughter of Mr. Henry Wallack, well known to the British and American boards. From the slight opportunity we have had of judging of her professional qualities we are inclined to augur for her a flattering success. We have also a good opinion of the qualifications possessed by Mr. W. Sherwin, the tenor, and hope to see him ere many nights have elapsed a favorite with our Melbourne play-goers. Mr. Farquarson is decidedly an immense acquisition to our corps d'opera, and although Ashton is not a telling part for him, we anticipate a grand treat for the patrons of Our Lyceum this evening from the thoroughly established reputation which this excellent singer has acquired in the mother country, and which has been fully endorsed by our Sydney neighbors. Mr. Gregg and Mrs. Fiddes will, we believe, also appear. The orchestra and chorus have been judiciously selected. The former is under the direction of Mr. Linley Norman, with Strebinger for leader, and numbers several of our most popular instrumental performers, including Messrs. King (first violin), Johnson (clarionet), Hartigan (ophecleide), and in addition a Mr. Siche [recte, Siede], a flautist of high reputation in England and Germany, and who has only very recently arrived in the colony. Mr. Hosking, an admirable light comedian, who will be well remembered by the ci-divant patrons of Messrs. Phelps and Greenwood, also makes his debut this evening as Colonel Jack Delaware, a Yankee "patter" part, in the farce of "A Fast Train."

[Advertisement], Empire (17 October 1857), 1

LAST APPEARANCE, SATURDAY, OCTOBER 17TH.- It having been reported that Mr. Farquharson will most likely have two or three more "last appearances" in Sydney in the course of the ensuing week, Mr. F. begs to inform his friends that there is no foundation for the same. Mr. Farquharson is aware that a practice has obtained of announcing "a last appearance" then "positively last appearance" then "A farewell" "A last farewell" "A last final farewell" "A positively last final farewell." and, perhaps, to conclude with, by special desire of a number of friends, a "Most positively last final farewell." Mr. F. objects to this fashion, and therefore simply announces his farewell performance for SATURDAY, the 17th instant

[news], The Argus (6 November 1865), 5 

Mr. Farquharson, the popular vocalist, has sailed for England, per the ship Giant's Causeway. On Friday morning, previous to his sailing by the Resolute tug, which left Sandridge to tow the ship from Corio Bay, he was wished a cordial "good-bye" by a number of his professional and personal friend, who assembled for the purpose, at the Port Phillip Club Hotel. Mr. Farquharson has spent eight years in the Australian colonies, and wherever he sojourned he secured a high place in public favour.

After Australia (from November 1865)

"THEATRICAL AND MUSICAL MEMS.", The Sydney Morning Herald (8 December 1868), 5

"DEATH OF A VOCALIST", Edinburgh Evening News (27 February 1880), 2

The decease is announced of Mr. Farquharson, once a well-known baritone vocalist, at the age of 60. His real name was Robert Farquharson Smith. In 1855, Farquharson went to Australia and New Zealand with William Hoskins, a popular tragedian under the Phelps and Greenwood management, and the success accompanying his concerts in the colonies enabled him to secure a provision for his after years of leisure in this country.

[News], Surrey Mirror (28 February 1880), 10

On Saturday last Mr. Robert Farquharson Smith (latterly known as Mr. Farquharson) expired, after a painful illness. He was one of the few artists remaining among us, identified with what used to be called "The palmy days English opera," he having been associated with Miss Birch, Miss Romer, Miss Poole, Templeton, Henry Phillips, and others.

"OBITUARY", The Musical Times (March 1880), 143

On the 12th ult, at the residence of his son, No. 2, Wilberforce Road, Finsbury Park, ROBERT FARQUHARSON (ROBERT FARQUHARSON SMITH) . . .

"FARQUHARSON", The Argus (17 April 1880), 8

Twenty five years ago there came to this colony from England a small dramatic and musical company, one member of which was Robert Farquharson who had been known in England as Robert Farquharson Smith. For a while the little company kept together appearing first at the old Queens theatre in Queen street but afterwards they separated and went their several ways and Farquharson at once became the most popular vocalist in the colonies. He had one of the finest baritone voices ever heard - clear rich deep, resonant and flexible - but he had also a manner which for brightness, geniality, cheeriness could not be excelled. Accordingly in that sort of entertainment which poor John Parry may be said to have invented he was delightful. He could keep an audience in good humour for two hours without any flagging, and send them away wishing for more. At that time we had no room in Melbourne for concert and other like purposes larger than the upper room of the then Mechanics Institute, and among the many pleasant associations belonging to this place is the recollection of Farquharson's entertainments. He was an excellent pianist, and nothing could be pleasanter than listening to his comic ballad romances or those serious descriptive songs with which the name of Henry Russell is associated. But in ordinary concert work, Farquharson was equally at home, and equally popular, and in oratorio, too, when the Philharmonic Society was the chief musical body in this city, his name in the programme was always a powerful attraction.

When opera in its more complete form was presented on the Melbourne stage, Farquharson's name, after a while, was included in the company, and if he had been known only in connexion with the earlier lyric performances in this city, he would deserve to be held in high regard. His Marcel in "The Huguenots" is a memory of the most enduring kind to all who remember what was substantially the beginning of our opera experience here, for it was not only a grand example of vocalisation, but it surprised even his warmest admirers by its rare and true dramatic force. No Marcel has ever in this city approached it, either for vocal or histrionic excellence. This, however, is only one of many evidences he gave of the high degree of ability he possessed for lyrico-dramatic interpretation, and there can be no question that if he had devoted himself exclusively to this branch of his art, he could have defied competition, for in comic opera, as well as opera seria, he was equally excellent, indeed, in the quality of rich humour he was unsurpassable.

Thus of his public life. But the feelings which have been awakened in many minds by the mention of his death (which, as already announced, took place in February last) have reference more to his private than his public relations. Farquharson was one of the largest-hearted, happiest-dispositioned men it was the good fortune of any one to know. No member of the theatrical or musical profession in Melbourne ever had a larger number of private friends, and he had only one enemy - himself. Like many other brilliant men, he had a single weakness, but it was in company with such a host of good qualities that you at once forgave him. He seemed to diffuse brightness where ever he went, his handsome, merry face involuntarily brought smiles upon the faces of those about him.

He left these colonies a good many years ago, and probably it would have been better for him if he had stayed in Melbourne instead of going back to London. For some time but little has been heard of him, and to many here now the announcement of his death revives no memories. But to those who knew him at his best, and especially to those who knew him in that large circle of private friends by whom he was beloved, the news of his decease comes as a sorrowful record, for he was one of those sunny influences which help to make life less dreary and weary, and he will always be thought of therefore with a warmth of affection far beyond the mere liking which the average public favourite evokes.

"STAGE GOSSIP", The bulletin (24 April 1880), 6 

Robert Farquharson - or, simply, Farquharson, as he was best known amongst us - the most eminent bass singer in concert or opera that has ever visited Australia, died in London on the 14th of February, aged sixty years. He was one of two brothers, Robert Farquharson Smith and Henry Smith, who gave entertainments in England forty years ago in the style of Henry Russell, and for singing the songs of the latter Henry Smith was involved in a law suit with Russell. His Marcel in the "Huguenots," and Giorgio in "I Puritani," has seldom been equalled, and he was one of the main supports of the Lyster Opera Company. He was a genial companion, kind hearted to a fault, and the least egotistical of artists. Had he lived he was to have revisited us this year, and many of his old friends in every part of Australia will regret to hear of his decease. May he rest in peace!

"Victoria", The Brisbane Courier (28 April 1880), 3 

The mail brought us news of the death of Robert Farquharson Smith, better known as Farquharson, the baritone singer, who has never had his equal here as Marcel, in the "Huguenots." He was a genial, bright spirit, a good vocalist, and no man's enemy save his own.

"DRAMATIC AND MUSICAL NOTES", Otago Witness (1 May 1880), 19 

Musical sources:

Manuscript of the music for the part of Marcel, in Meyerbeer's Les Huguenots; University of Melbourne, Library 

In contemporary cloth binding with stiff covers and a gilt-embossed red morocco label, this part was evidently prepared for and/or by Robert Farquarson, in the role of Marcel in its first season by the Lyster Opera Company from 15 November 1862

Bibliography and resources:

Frederic Boase, Modern English biography . . . volume 1, A-H (Truro: Netherton and Worth, 1892), 1858

FARQUHARSON, ROBERT, stage name of Robert Farquharson Smith. b. 1820; articled to Harris of Drury Lane, chorus master; sang at coronation of William IV, 1838; sang in opera at Drury Lane and Surrey theatres, also at concerts; member of the Sims Reeves opera troupe; went to Australia 1856, sang there in opera and concerts; sang at the Opera Comique, London. d. 2 Wilberforce road, Finsbury park, London 12 Feb. 1880.

Kurt Ganzl, Victorian vocalists (London: Routledge, 2017), 224-29 (PREVIEW) (PREVIEW)


Teacher of music and singing

Active Sydney, NSW, 1854


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (23 May 1854), 1

FARRELLY, Florentine (Florentina FARRELLY; Madame FARRELLY)

= Florentine DUDEMAINE

FATHERLEY, Charlotte Crofton (Miss ROWE; FATHERLY; Mrs. George Crofton FATHERLEY; Mrs. CROFTEN FATHERLEY; Charlotte FATHERLEY)

Organist, pianist, violinist, composer, actor

Born Brighton, England, 1829
Arrived Victoria, c.1855
Active Bendigo, VIC, by 1866; Hamilton, 1876
Died Hamilton, VIC, 10 January 1877 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"Royal Academy of Music", The Literary Gazette (26 April 1851), 303

CHARLOTTE ROWE Is a native of Brighton, and learnt music at first only as young ladies usually do at school; but showing a decided fondness for it, when eleven years old she was removed to London, and studied some time under Mr. Haydon, making such progress that it was considered advisable to educate her for the profession, and with this view she entered the Royal Academy of Music in 1846. Here, for four years and a half, she pursued her studies with much industry, and was appointed a Sub-Professor for piano, and, on leaving the Academy, was raised to be an Assistant Professor, and subsequently was made an Associate. Miss Rowe has had her compositions frequently performed at the Academy Concerts, embracing both the secular and sacred styles. In conclusion, we may be allowed to hope, that the talent and industry which have placed her in so good a position in the profession will not be suffered to flag, and that her previous efforts, however creditable, are but an earnest of future and greater excellence.

"ROYAL ACADEMY CONCERTS", The Musical World (30 April 1853), 272

William W. Cazalet, History of the Royal Academy of Music (London: T. Bosworth, 1854), 314

[Advertisement], The Illustrated London News (15 August 1857), 182

[Advertisement], The Argus (15 January 1858), 3

MUSIC- On the arrival of the Windsor from London, MISS CHARLOTTE ROW, Associate of the Royal Academy, will be prepared to TEACH PIANOFORTE, Concertina, also English and Italian Singing.

"TOTAL LOSS OF THE EMIGRANT SHIP WINDSOR", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 April 1858), 3

"THE EXHIBITION", The Argus (7 October 1861), 5

. . . and a lady rejoicing in the name of "Charlotte Fatherly," has sent some manuscript music, which, it is to be presumed, has a local application.

"THE CONCERT IN AID OF THE GERMAN COMMON SCHOOL", Bendigo Advertiser (1 May 1866), 2

. . . The second portion of the programme was of a miscellaneous character; in it were several choice morceaux from "Gideon", an oratorio composed by Mrs. Fatherly, and just enough to make one wish to hear more of the composition, which we understand, is to be sung, at an early date, by the Philharmonic Society.

"SANDHURST PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", Bendigo Advertiser (13 August 1866), 2

"ALL SAINTS CHURCH" & "SONG OF LOYALTY ", Bendigo Advertiser (11 October 1867), 2

. . . Mrs. Fatherley presided at the new organ and led the choir, which consisted of between twenty and thirty singers. A number of pieces of sacred music were performed . . . The members of the choir who are, on the occasion of the Duke of Edinburgh's visit, to sing "the song of loyalty", composed by Mrs. Fatherly, are requested by advertisement to meet for rehearsal at the Town Hall to-night.

"OPENING OF THE VOLUNTEER RIFLE CORPS' ORDERLY ROOM", Bendigo Advertiser (19 December 1867), 2

"AMATEUR CONCERT", Bendigo Advertiser (8 May 1868), 2

"SANDHURST FINES ARTS EXHIBITION", The Argus (31 July 1869), 5

"THE HAWTHORN. A BALLAD", The Mercury (18 January 1870), 2

"MISS KATE WARDE AT THE TOWN HALL", The Cornwall Chronicle (15 April 1870), 2

"THEATRE ROYAL", Launceston Examiner (30 April 1870), 5

. . . Mrs. Fatherley is a host in herself, and her appearance on the stage is always the signal for that peculiar general movement of the audience indicative of anticipated amusement. Her Cornelia is the very broad light acting as a foil to the rather sombre and deep shadows of the plot. Her son, Master Willie Fatherley, performs his by no means easy part with remarkable fidelity to the meaning of the author . . .

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Cornwall Chronicle (6 June 1870), 2

"THEATRE ROYAL", The Cornwall Chronicle (13 June 1870), 2

"WEEKLY REGISTER", Empire (30 October 1871), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (25 November 1873), 1

MRS. CROFTON FATHERLEY, associate R.A.M. (pupil of Thalberg, Sterndale Bennett, Schira, Crivelli), PIANO, English, Italian Singing, Organ, Composition. 120 Moray-street, Emerald-hill.

[Advertisement], Border Watch (10 April 1875), 1

[News], The Argus (8 October 1875), 6

"NEW MUSIC", South Australian Register (30 December 1875), 5

"MUSIC RECEIVED", Portland Guardian (11 January 1876), 2

"DEATH OF MRS. FATHERLEY", Bendigo Advertiser (12 January 1877), 2

It will be learnt with regret by her wide circle of friends and acquaintances that this talented lady expired at residence, Hamilton, between three and four o'clock on Wednesday. The deceased lady, nee Charlotte Rowe, was a pupil in the Royal Academy of Music when Sir Cypriani Potter was the principal, and through that celebrated man obtained a license to teach music, singing, and harmony, which in those days was considered a great thing for any lady pupil to obtain. A gentleman in Hamilton remembers Miss Rowe very well, he being from 1839 to 1849 proprietor of "The Musical World." This gentleman states that in addition to being an accomplished instrumentalist, Miss Rowe possessed a clear, ringing soprano voice of good compass. Miss Rowe came out here in 1858, and first proceeded to practice her profession, that of a teacher of music, at Castlemaine. Subsequently, she removed to Sandhurst, where she was married to Mr. Fatherley, and on leaving that town came to Hamilton, where for years previous to her death she taught at the colleges, and also gave private tuition. As a conductor of a large number of vocalists, we have never seen her surpassed by any member of the weaker sex. Those who saw her conduct the singing at the opening of our State school, will agree with the remark. She leaves one son, and although she was kept very busy, it is to be feared her circumstances when she died were not affluent.

"DIED", Hamilton Spectator (23 January 1877), 2 

FATHERLEY - At Hamilton, on the 8th January, Mrs. Fatherley, A.R.A. Lond., aged 44.

"DEATHS", The Age (17 September 1912), 1 

Musical works:

A motet by Miss C. Rowe (London, 1851)

Conrad (a scena from an opera entitled Conrad, including choruses and solos for soprano and tenor, by Miss Charlotte Rowe) (London, 1853)

The fairy dream [?] (Miss Lascelles's New Ballad. composed by Charlotte Rowe)

All the air is filled with sound (MS cantata) [? LOST]

Gideon (MS sacred oratorio) [? LOST]

The hawthorn (a ballad written and composed by Charlotte Fatherley) (Melbourne: Clarson, Massina, [1870]) 

The Exhibition waltzes (composed in commemoration of the Melbourne and Philadelphia Exhibition by C. C. Fatherley) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen & Co., [1870]) 

Leah, the forsaken (play, given at Kate Warde's Benefit, "the music for which has been composed and arranged expressly for the occasion by Mrs. Crofton Fatherley, Associate Royal Academy of Music, London." (Launceston, June 1870)

Cordelia (morceau de salon) (in Colonial musical cabinet, Christmas number) (Melbourne: W. H. Glen & Co., [1875]) (DIGITISED)

Bibliography and resources:

George Mackay, Annals of Bendigo, 115; rootsweb

FAURE, Gustave (Gaspar FAURE; Mons. FAURE)

Clarionette / clarinet player(s)

Active Ballarat and Melbourne, VIC, from 1857


For his QUADRILLE ASSEMBLY at his Academy, 80 Fitzroy street, Collingwood. Mr J. Watts in August 1858 "engaged the celebrated clarionet performer, Mons. FAURE, late of Jullien's Concerts at the Crystal Palace, Sydenham, who, on this occasion, will perform Bear's Great Solo, accompanied by Mr. Piper, the eminent pianist". Faure was playing for Fleury's bands is Ballarat in 1858 and 1859, where in November 1857 a Gaspar Faure also signed a published petition as a Ballarat East ratepayer. In Melbourne in October 1853, "CLARIONET SOLOIST, Gaspar Faure, Belgian Horseguards" advertised that he was open to engagement, from 41 Hanover-street, Fitzroy. With Edward King, violin and Henry J. King, piano, Gustave Faure appeared in concert at the Wesleyan Bazaar, Emerald Hill, in December 1863. In 1864 Faure was playing in Frederick Coppin and Frank Howson junior's orchestra at Melbourne's New Haymarket Theatre.


[Advertisement], The Star (4 November 1857), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (2 August 1858), 8

[Advertisement], The Star (23 December 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (6 June 1859), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (19 October 1863), 1

[Advertisement], The Argus (5 December 1863), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (16 January 1864), 8

"THE NEW HAYMARKET THEATRE", The Argus (5 August 1864), 7

FENTON, Charles

Actor, comedian, vocalist

Born c. 1791
Active Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), by December 1833
Active Sydney, NSW, by July 1838
Died Darlinghurst, NSW, 21 October 1851, aged 60 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"THE THEATRE", The Austral-Asiatic Review (31 December 1833), 4 

. . . Mr. Fenton also is an old London performer . . .

"Theatricals", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 January 1842), 3 

Our old and deserving favorite Fenton, took his benefit last Monday night, at the Theatre, in co-partnership with Peat, and we are pleased to say, had a very good house. We have always been partial to Fenton, from the decent manner in which he goes through the most of his parts, whilst some of his characteristic old men are really inimitable. The play of the "Last Stake" was well got up and acted. After the piece, Fenton sang a comic song, for the amusement of his friends. We know well, and so does all Sydney, that Fenton cannot sing, but it was for the novelty of the thing, and to please his patrons, in which ho happily succeeded, being loudly encored . . .

"DIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 October 1851), 4 

At his late residence, Crown-street, on the 21st instant, after a long and painful illness, Charles Fenton, aged 60 years, many years connected with the Victoria Theatre, and much beloved and respected by all who knew him, leaving a wife and family to deplore their loss. The funeral will take place on Thursday morning at 8 o'clock.

FERARI, Madame


Announced Melbourne, VIC, and Sydney, NSW, 1853


Advertisements for Coleman Jacobs's farewell in Sydney in October 1853 announced the "Celebrated Vocalist from the Italian Opera in Paris - her first appearance in this country, who is expected from Melbourne daily". However, neither she nor fellow debutant, Ernesto Spagnoletti, appeared for the concert. While Spagnoletti did eventually make his Sydney debut, nothing more is heard of a Madame Ferari (Ferrari/Ferarri).


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (15 October 1853), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (25 October 1853), 2

"MR. COLEMAN JACOBS'S CONCERT", Illustrated Sydney News (29 October 1853), 6

"MR. COLEMAN JACOBS'S CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 October 1853), 5

"MR. COLEMAN JACOBS'S CONCERT", Empire (27 October 1853), 3

"MR. COLEMAN JACOBS'S CONCERT", Bell's Life in Sydney (29 October 1853), 2


Musician, vocalist, composer, artist

Born England 1818
Arrived VDL (TAS), 1846 (per Aden)
Died Sale, VIC, 21 October 1878



The Tasmanian artist, Susan Fereday composed an unidentified song (words by W. A. Gardiner) that was advertised for publication in Huxtable and Deakin's The Tasmanian lyre in 1854, but which, inexplicably, does not in fact seem to have been included in the finished series. She was an active musician, appearing as a vocal soloist for the Launceston Philharmonic Society in February 1856, in a duet composed by its director John Adams. The words of her song were written by a former Manchester philanthropist, William Atkinson Gardiner (d.1855), who in 1851 brought out to Launceston, Tasmania "at his own entire charge and expense, twelve young women, as a donation to the colony".


[Advertisement], The Courier (13 November 1854), 3

[Advertisement], The Courier (15 November 1854), 1

"ANNUAL COMMEMORATION. CHRIST'S COLLEGE", The Courier (26 December 1854), 2

"LAUNCESTON PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", Launceston Examiner (28 February 1856), 2

"George Town", The Cornwall Chronicle (17 July 1867), 5

"George Town", The Cornwall Chronicle (20 January 1869), 3

"DEATH", Gippsland Times (23 October 1878), 2

Documentation (Gardiner):

"FEMALE EMIGRATION", Launceston Examiner (12 March 1851), 3

"THE LATE W. A. GARDINER", Colonial Times (27 June 1855), 3

Bibliography and resources:

"Fereday, Susan", Biography, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, Australian National Herbarium

(from Women of flowers, by Leonie Norton (2009), National Library of Australia)

"Susan Fereday", Design & Art Australia Online (DAAO)


Comic vocalist, delineator, ? black-face impersonator

Active Sydney, NSW, 1838


The American black-face vocalist and impersonator Thomas D. Rice (1808-1860) in his famous role as Jim Crow" had already come to the attention of the Sydney press in 1833, when this extract was reprinted from a New York paper: An earlier American performance of the song by Rice was mentioned:

When Mr. Rice came on to sing his celebrated song of "Jim Crow," they not only made him repeat it some twenty times, but hemmed him in so that he actually had no room to perform the little dancing or turning about appertaining to the song . . .

Rice later introduced his character and song ("I come from ole Kentucky . . . I jump Jim Crow") to British audiences at the Surrey Theatre, London, in 1836. Rice's performance was much commented on the press (several reports copied in the colonial press during 1837), and a copy of the first British sheet music edition of the song was plausibly used by Ferguson for his first Sydney performances at the Royal Victoria Theatre on 28 August and 1 September 1838, and in the following fortnight also by John Herman Selwyn Lee. There had been an earlier performance of the song at Hobart theatre on 15 January 1838. In April 1838, retired captain John Piper entered a 5-year-old horse named Jim Crow in the Bathurst Races, and on the last Sunday of that month in Sydney the Band of the 50th Regiment reportedly played the tune at as it marched back to Barracks Square from the service in St. Phillip's Church.

There is no other record of someone called Ferguson being associated with Sydney theatre, or indeed with singing, around this time.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (25 August 1838), 3 

. . . After which (for the first time in this Colony), Mr. Ferguson will sing the celebrated popular Comic Song, entitled "JIM CROW."

"THE VICTORIA", The Sydney Herald (12 September 1838), 2 

. . . A mass of vulgar buffoonery and impiety, called "Jim Crow," has been sung several times, but we trust the managers will not allow the ears of decent people to be annoyed by it any more.

Musical source:

Jim Crow, the celebrated Nigger song, sung by Mr. Rice with unbounded shouts of applause at the Royal Surrey Theatre (London: [?], n.d. [1836]) (DIGITISED)

Australian copy of the same London edition, as above, in owner bound album originally belonging to Lillias Dowling (1818-1869; Mrs. Willoughby Dowling), of Sydney and Bathurst; collection of Rouse Hill Farm and House, Sydney Living Museums (Historic Houses Trust of NSW) 

Bibliography and resources: (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

"RICE, THOMAS D.", in Brown's history of the American stage (New York: Dick & Fitzgerald, n.d. [1870]), 310 

Matthew Stephens, "Songs and scandal uncovered: the Dowling music project", Sydney Living Museums (Historic Houses Trust of NSW), website 

FERNANDEZ, Lucy Knight (Mrs. George Frederick SMYTHE; SMYTH)

Pianist (pupil of Cramer and Moscheles)

Born London, England, 31 January 1809; baptised St. Pancras Old Church, 17 April 1809
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 24 July 1839 (passenger per Ferguson, from the Downs, 29 March)
Married George Smythe, Sydney, NSW, 15 February 1840
Died East Melbourne, VIC, 2 January 1862 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Lucy Fernandez appears only to have performed in public between her arrival in Sydney in mid-1839 and her marriage early in 1840. However, the impression given in other sketch histories that she was merely a visitor to Sydney proves to be incorrect, as I reckon also incorrect is their unfounded imputation that her claim to be a pupil of Cramer and Moscheles must, by her very presence in Australia, have been bogus. Having meanwhile given birth to and raised several children, she advertised again as a teacher of the pianoforte in May 1847, and in July announced the publication of:

EXERCISES AND STUDIES FOR THE PIANOFORTE, selected, arranged, and fingered expressly for the use of her pupils, by MRS. SMYTH. To be had at her residence, Wyatt's Cottages, Hyde Park.

Having again advertised as a teacher in 1849 and 1852, in March 1853 she offered her piano for sale "in consequence of the owner removing to Melbourne", following her husband who had already taken up a position there in an insurance company. I have found no record of her teaching in Melbourne.


"ARRIVALS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (25 July 1839), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (30 August 1839), 3

"Miss Fernandez' Concert", Australasian Chronicle (24 September 1839), 1

Truly this is becoming a musical people. Night after night, we see crowds assembling to enjoy this innocent and enobling amusement, and every Concert surpasses its predecessor in presenting before us concatenations of all that is beautiful, and elegant, and dignified. This was really a fashionable Concert. The Governor, with his Lady and Suite, the families of Sir J. Dowling, Sir Maurice O'Connell, the Colonial Secretary, the Attorney General, &c., were present; nor could we distinguish the absence of any whose names could have added to the brilliancy of the scene. Come we then to the performances, and first of all to those of the "star of the evening", Miss Fernandez, whom we have no hesitation in saying, has no rival as a pianiste in the Colony. Her playing is really faultless. She has abundant execution - so have others, but she understands what she executes. She has great powers of wrist - so have others, but she knows when to exert and when to diminish these powers. Above all, she has feeling and expression, which constitute the soul of music, and without which mere execution is nothing better than tricks of legerdemain. Her performance of Herz's Solo, introducing the air "Suoni la tromba", was exquisite; and we do not recollect to have heard anything that gave us more pleasure than the fugue which concluded the admirable Trio from Beethoven. This is music, both in composition and performance . . .We are sorry to say . . . that the Orchestra was a failure. Fortunately Miss Fernandez had an Orchestra in her own hands, which went far to make up the deficiency. In fact there is a such a soul of music joined to such a modest, domestic appearance in this young lady, that if the young Colonists are at all of our taste, we are much afraid the musical world will soon have to regret her loss, TO IT. Happy he whose home shall be blest with such harmony. We wish Miss Fernandez every success.

"MISS FERNANDEZ' CONCERT", The Australian (24 September 1839), 2

"Married", The Australian (18 February 1840), 3

"BIRTH", The Australian (16 March 1841), 3

[Advertisement], Sydney Chronicle (8 May 1847), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 June 1847), 1

"BIRTHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 February 1849), 3

[Peregrine Fernandez Smyth]

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 April 1849), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 March 1852), 1

MRS. GEORGE SMYTH, formerly MISS FERNANDEZ, Pianiste, many years pupil of CRAMER and MOSCHELES, begs to acquaint her old pupils and friends, that she intends resuming her profession, and will be happy to give lessons at her own residence, Terry's Buildings, Pitt-street, near Hunter-street.
For sale, a very handsome new Pianoforte.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 March 1853), 3

"DEATHS", The Argus (12 November 1859), 4

"DEATHS", The Argus (3 January 1862), 4

"DEATHS", The Argus (27 April 1867), 4

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (1 July 1871), 1

Bibliography and resources:

HRA 1/23, 1843-44 (1925), 477-78

[Letter, George Gipps (governor NSW) to Lord Stanley (London), 14 August 1844] In my Despatches enumerated in the Margin, the suspension of the Matron, Sub-Matron and House Steward of the the Female Factory at Parramatta . . . and I have appointed Mr. and Mrs. George Smyth to be House Steward and Matron of the Establishment . . . He was until lately a Merchant in Sydney; and though he, like numbers of others, sank beneath the Commercial embarrassments of the last three years, his failure was attended with no circumstances impeaching his [478] conduct or integrity. He was employed by me a short time as an Inspector of Distilleries, and disclosed to the Government some attempts which were made to corrupt him. He is a Member of the Society of Friends, but does not object to attend the Church of England. Mrs. Smyth, his Wife, is a member of the Church of England, and fitted, I think, in a remarkable degree for the employment in which I have placed her; during the few weeks she has already been at the Factory, she has given me entire satisfaction. She was formerly a Miss Fernandez, the daughter of a British Officer (I think a Lieut. Colonel Fernandez), and is known to Mr. Frederick Elliot of the Colonial Land and Emigration Board . . .


Music lithographer, printer

Born Rugeley, Staffordshire, England, 17 March 1809
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1836
Died Sydney, NSW, 15 August 1849, aged 40 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

See also: 


Fernyhough produced two musical prints, of which the earlier is probably the undated Vincent Wallace piece Walze favorite du duc de Reichstadt ("arranged with variations for the piano forte", "printed from Zinc by W. H. Fernyhough"). The title-page lists 3 other works by Wallace available at his "Academy", though these had evidently been printed previously in Britain. Wallace first announced his Academy in March 1836, and nothing is heard of it after that year, so the waltz print can be tentatively dated to late 1836. Fernyhough, a recent arrival, had commenced business and produced his first prints for sale by September 1836. Fernyhough's second musical print, of Thomas Stubbs's Australian Jubilee waltz ("arranged for the piano forte by Wm. Wallace") can be very precisely dated to January 1838.


[News], The Colonist (22 September 1836), 3

[Advertisement], The Australian (19 January 1838), 1

"THE JUBILEE WALTZ", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (6 February 1938), 2

"DIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 August 1849), 3

Bibliography and resources:

Richard Neville, "William Henry Ferneyhough", Design & Art Australia Online (DAAO) (1992; 2011)

Neidorf 1999, 167-68


Musician (Achille Fleury's band)

Active Ballarat, VIC, 1857



Vincent v. Fleury de Recuillon. -
Mr. Cope appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. Wigley for the defendant.
This was a plaint to recover £29 10s. for the performance of the plaintiff, his wife, and a Mr. Youle, for singing and playing the piano for M. Fleury in Melbourne.
The defendant was the well-known M. Fleury, formerly the leader of the band at the Victoria Theatre . . .
A witness named Quinn, who had been one of Mr. Fleury's band, was called, and said he had performed at Mr. Fleury's concerts for five months before the plaintiff, his wife and Mr. Youle came, and they were well attended. After these parties came, the attendance fell off.
The extra night charged £2 10s. for, was for the benefit of Mr. Fleury.
"The musicians agreed to take half salary. The Vincents and Youle sang only two songs.
Cross-examined by Mr Cope. - One of these songs was the "Rat Catcher's Daughter," the other a comic duet between Mr. Youle and Mrs. Vincent.
Auguste Feuillen gave similar testimony to the preceding witness.
The Assessors found a verdict for the plaintiff for £13, being the balance, allowing for £14 already received.

FIDDES, Harriet Catherine (Miss H. CAWSE; Miss Harriet CAWSE; Mrs. FIDDES; Mrs. Harriet FIDDES)

Contralto vocalist, professor of music, composer, actor

Born London, 5 October 1811; baptised St. George, Bloomsbury, 25 October 1811
Married John FIDDES, St. Pancras Old Church, London, 16 April 1835
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 4 November 1852 (per Marlborough, from London, 14 August)
Departed Australia, ? before 1860
Died Luddenden, Yorkshire, England, 18 February 1889 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)

FIDDES, Josephine Marianne (Mrs. Dominick MURRAY; "Miss Josephine FIDDES"; Josephine Fiddes MURRAY)

Vocalist, actor, playwright

Born Kilburn, London, England, May 1839
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 4 November 1852 (per Marlborough, from London, 14 August)
Departed Australia, after January 1862 (for England; arrived there by June 1862)
Died Steyning, Sussex, England, 12 March 1923, "aged 85" (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)


On 14 August 1852, the day of her departure, The Illustrated London News reported: "Mrs. Fiddes, late Miss H. Cawse, is about to imitate the example of Miss Sara Flower, the contralto, by visiting Australia, where the amateurs, instead of bouquets, throw nuggets and ingots to the singers". In 1825, she advertised that she was a "Pupil of Sir G. Smart." As Miss Harriet Cawse, she sang Puck in the premiere season of Carl Maria von Weber's Oberon in April-May 1826. Weber wrote to his wife from London on 9 March 1826:

The young fellow who was to have sung Puck has lost his voice, but I have a charming girl, who is very clever and sings capitally.

Miss Fanny Cawse, also active on the London stage in the 1840s, was her younger sister (b. 1825).

A well-known vocal veteran of the London stage, and since the 1840s also a prolific song composer, she arrived in Melbourne in November 1852, with her daughters. That month she advertised that she:

(formerly Miss H. CAWSE, of the Theatres Royal, Drury Lane, the Italian Opera House and Opera Buffa, the Philharmonic and Ancient Concerts, and likewise one of the Choir of the Foundling Hospital Chapel), begs to announce that she has just arrived from London, and intends taking up residence in Melbourne for the purpose of giving Lessons in Singing, pianoforte, guitar and the harp.

In December she sang in concert for Edward Hancock, and at the Melbourne Mechanics' Institution beginning in January 1853, gave a vocal masterclass, or "Select Vocal Academy for Young Ladies", in eight sessions covering a substantial repertoire of oratorio and opera arias by Handel, Mendelssohn, Donizetti, Kucken, Benedict and others. At Rachel Lazar Moore's concert in February she sang Il segreto from Donizetti's Lucia, and her own composition, the duet Childhood (words by Walter Scott) was sung. In Sydney in April, from her residence on the North Shore and care of Henry Marsh, she offered to teach "Singing, Pianoforte Playing, Harp, Guitar, &c, likewise [. . .] Harmony and Composition".

In August 1855, she and her daughters (Josephine and Harriet F.) arrived back in Australia, via Hawaii, with Lola Montez and company, having spent eight months touring in California. By October 1855 she was back in Melbourne. There in December 1857 and January 1858 she was advertising her school, Hamilton House, in Richmond. Several of her compositions are documented. In April 1856, at Coppin's Olympic:

"The Australian schottische", composed by Mrs. Fiddes was performed by the band subsequent to the tragedy [Macbeth] and was pronounced a success, by those who heard it. The melody is striking and rather Beethovenish, but the noise in the house and general restlessness of the audience prevented its reaching the ears of many.

In November 1856 a pair of songs entitled The souvenir was published in Melbourne.

Jospehine Fiddes last performed at the Lyceum in Sydney in January 1862, and again in 1870 it was reported that "Mr. and Mrs. Dominick Murray (Miss Josephine Fiddes), are coming to Australia (under engagement to Mr. Coppin), by way of San Francisco". Shortly after it was reported that they had divorced and Fiddes never returned to the colonies.


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Argus (6 November 1852), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (15 November 1852), 7

"MUSIC AT THE DIGGINGS", The Maitland Mercury (1 December 1852), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 December 1852), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (20 January 1853), 8

 [Advertisement], The Argus (26 February 1853), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 April 1853), 6

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Maitland Mercury (22 August 1855), 3

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", Empire (27 August 1855), 4

"MUSICAL", The Courier (16 October 1855), 2

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 November 1855), 1

"COPPIN'S OLYMPIC", The Argus (22 April 1856), 7

"NEW MUSIC", The Argus (25 November 1856), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (14 January 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 February 1859), 1s

[Advertisement], Empire (9 January 1862), 1

"Death of an Old Theatrical Favourite", The Era [London] (2 March 1889), 16

We have to record the decease, at the advanced age of seventy-seven, of Mrs. Harriett Catherine Fiddes, who expired on Feb. 18th, at the residence of her son-in-law, Luddendenfoot, Yorkshire. As Miss H. Cawse her memory will be pleasantly cherished by old playgoers on account of her personal attractions and the extent of her musical accomplishments. Miss Harriett Cawse was the youngest daughter of Mr. Cawse, a portrait-painter held in considerable estimation half-a-century ago, and made her first appearance upon the stage at Drury-lane Sept. 22d, 1832, as Daphne, in Midas. The next year her services were transferred to Covent-garden Theatre, where her elder sister had established herself as a popular vocalist. As the Fairy Queen in the opera of Cinderella, and in similar characters, Miss H. Cawse attracted general admiration. Her retirement from professional life took place on her marriage with Mr. Fiddes. The deceased had been for many years a member of the Covent-garden Theatrical Fund.

"An Old Annuitant", The Stage [London] (22 March 1923), 16

The death took place last week at Brighton at the age of 85 of Miss J. Murray [sic], better known to the public ot fifty years ago as Miss Josephine Fiddes. Miss Fiddes made her first appearance in London at Astley's in May, 1864, in a play called "The Spy of the Republic." She was later seen as the heroine in "The Flying Scud" at the Holborn, and made a name for herself in such parts as Leah, Lady Isabel in "East Lvnne," and Nan in "Good for Nothing." Miss Fiddes was a well-graced actress with varied talents. She wrote a play, which, however, did not meet with much success, and at one time appeared at Astleys in a revival of "Mazeppa." For many years she had been living in retirement. It is of interest to note that Miss Fiddes years ago be came a subscribing member of the Royal General Theatrical Fund. Her annuity became due when she reached the age of sixty, and she enjoyed it for twenty-five years, living comfortably in a little house in Brighton.

FIEBIG, August (Friedrich August FIEBIG; August FIEBIG; A. FIEBIG)

Musical instrument maker, repairer, and retailer, violin maker, apiarist

Born Silesia, Germany, 1833
Arrived Adelaide, SA, c. 1881
Arrived Onetree Hill, SA, 6 January 1908 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], Frearson's Monthly Illustrated Adelaide News (1 June 1884), 18 

AUGUST FIEBIG, PIRIE STREET, EAST, Begs to inform the musicaL public that he has started business at the above address as REPAIRER OF MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS. VIOLINS A SPECIALITY. Manufacturer of the noted Dzierzon Beehive, including the improved system of Baron Berlepsch.

"DEATHS", The Express and Telegraph (8 January 1908), 1 

FIEBIG. - On the 6th January, at his residence, Onetree Hill, Friedrich August, dearly beloved husband of Louisia Fiebig, aged 74 years.


Violin and case by August Fiebig, 1891; National Museum of Australia 

Bibliography and resources:

Bridget Jolly, "South Australia's early Ligurian beekeeping - and a lingering Kangaroo Island fable", Journal of the Historical Society of South Australia 32 (2004), [69-81], 71;dn=200500688;res=IELAPA (PAYWALL)

. . . [J. H.] Weidenhofer obtained a queen and colony from Sydney in late 1883, and on 4 January 1884 the steamer Birksgate brought him a "case" of 40,000 Ligurian bees (weighing abour three kilograms) for his apiary at Rundle Street, Kent Town. When the Silesian, August Fiebig (1833-1908), established his premises in Pirie Street (East) as a stringed musical instrument-maker (probably in 1883), he was close to Kent Town. There he managed the apiary and instructed its proprietor, Weidenhofer, who was said to have been assisted by a "practical" apiarian, undoubtedly Fiebig, who was a witness to Weidenhofer's father's will of December 1885.

FIELD, Barron

Transcriber of Indigenous song, judge, opera and drama reviewer (The Times)

Born London, England, 23 October 1786
Arrived Sydney, February 1817 (per Lord Melville)
Departed Sydney, February 1824 (per Competitor)
Died Torquay, England, 11 April 1846 (NLA persistent identifier) (TROVE tagged)


On account of his collections of poetry, First fruits of Australian poetry ([Sydney: George Howe, 1819]) ("I first adventure. Follow me who list; / And be the second Austral Harmonist"), Field has been called the "First Austral Harmonist". He was one of the seven foundings member, in June 1821, of the Philosophical Society of Australasia.

As a former dramatic and opera reviewer for The Times (see Fenner), it is likely that Field had sufficient musical skill to have made his famous transcription of an Australian National Melody from the singing of Harry, printed in an article that he sent to London, for publication in 1823.

For full details of original source and later printed copies, see: 


"ELIA" [Charles Lamb], "THE OLD AND NEW SCHOOLMASTER", The London Magazine (May 1821), 492;view=1up;seq=516 

. . . I know less geography than a school-boy of six weeks' standing. To me a map of old Ortelius is as authentic as Arrowsmith. I do not know whereabout Africa merges into Asia; whether Ethiopia lie in one or other of those great divisions; nor can form the remotest conjecture of the position of New South Wales, or Van Dieman's Land. Yet I do hold a correspondence with a very dear friend in the first-named of these two Terrae Incognitae . . .

"ELIA" [Charles Lamb], MACKERY END, IN HERTFORDSHIRE", The London Magazine (July 1821), 30 

. . . We were made welcome by husband and wife equally - we, and our friend that was with us. - I had almost forgotten him - but B. F. will not so soon forget that meeting, if peradventure he shall read this on the far distant shores where the Kangaroo haunts . . .

"B. F.", "NARRATIVE OF A VOYAGE TO NEW SOUTH WALES", The London Magazine (March 1822), 221-28;view=1up;seq=277 

"ELIA" [Charles Lamb], "DISTANT CORRESPODENTS. In a Letter to B. F. Esq. at Sydney, New South Wales", The London Magazine (March 1822), 282-85;view=1up;seq=338 

B. F. [Barron Field], "Journal of an excursion across the Blue Mountains of New South Wales (October 1822)", The London Magazine (November 1823), 461-75; especially 465 

[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (3 February 1825), 2

"REVIEW OF JUDGE FIELD'S POETRY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (25 November 1826), 3

"MR. BARRON FIELD", The Australian (8 December 1825), 2

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 August 1846), 3

Other resources:

Letter from Charles Lamb to Barron Field (31 August 1817)

Letter from Louis de Freycinet to Barron Field (6 July 1820)

Papers relating to Barron Field (1820-ca. 1930)

Bibliography and resources:

C. H. Currey, "Field, Barron (1786-1846)", Australian dictionary of biography 1 (1966)

Kenneth E. Kendall, Leigh Hunt's "Reflector" (Studies in English literature 59) (The Hague: Mouton, 1971), 99 (PREVIEW)

David Higgins, "Writing to colonial Australia: Barron Field and Charles Lamb", Nineteenth-Century Contexts: An Interdisciplinary Journal 32/3 (2010), 219-33

Theodore Fenner, Opera in London: views of the press 1785-1830 (Southern Illinois University Press, 1994), esp. 25 (PREVIEW)

Barron Field (1786-1840 [sic]), another Blue Coat boy who became well acquainted with the Lambs and Hunts and their literary circles, was appointed to the Times that year, and the History ([of the Times (1935)], I, 89-91) cites Leigh Hunt's influence on him about that time; . . . several [theatrical reviews] can be identified as his [in 1807] as well as three in late 1808 and one in 1809, when he . . . resigned from the paper and began his [legal] studies at the Inner Temple . . .

FIELD, Robert


Died Reid's Creek, Ovens area, VIC, 3 January 1858


"The late Disastrous Fire at Reid's Creek", Mount Alexander Mail (11 January 1858), 2 

We learn from the Ovens papers, that an inquest was held on Monday last on the remains of the bodies of five persons who lost their lives in the fire at the Welcome Inn, on the 3rd instant. The evidence went to show that there were from 15 to 20 persons in the house on the night of the fire; that the fire originated in the bedroom of a Mr. Newey, who, with his wife and family, were staying in the house; and that six persons had been burned to death. There is strong reason for believing that two others have shared the same fate. The jury returned a verdict to the effect - That Mr. and Mrs. Newey, their child, two musicians, of the names of Robert Field and Charlie --, and a man supposed to be one Cuthbert, a splitter, came to their deaths by accidental circumstances.

FILHON, Auguste

Violinist, artist

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1855-67 (also later active in Paraguay)


[Advertisement], The Argus (23 June 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (18 August 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (11 September 1855), 3

[Advertisement], The Star (23 December 1858), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (10 February 1866), 1

"INSOLVENCIES", The Victorian Gazette (15 February 1867), 356

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 December 1867), 8

FILLMORE, Henry William

Pianist, violinist, comic vocalist, "public house player on the Pianoforte", piano tuner

Born London, England; baptised St. Martin-in-the-Fields, 20 September 1818 (son of William and Harriet FILLMORE)
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 4 February 1841 (assisted immigrant per Marquis of Hastings; age 22, from parish of St. Paul, Covent Garden)
Died Sydney, NSW, November 1848 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Son of a glazier from Covent Garden, in March 1841, H. W. Fillmore advertised that "he has lately arrived in Sydney for the purpose of playing the Pianoforte at Quadrille parties". He was advertised regularly as pianist at George Coppin's (later George Skinner's) Saloon from April through to November 1844 (most not referenced below, but easily to be found in Trove). Described as a "public house player on the pianoforte", Henry Fillmore was before the court for, by reason of drunkenness, "having committed a breach of his agreement sa a musician and general servant, with William Stone, publican, of Pitt-street." On 9 November 1848, the Herald ran a private advertisement: "THE friends of the late Henry William Fillmore, are requested to attend his Funeral, at four o'clock, this day, from Wilmot-street, Pitt-street."


[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (29 March 1841), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 April 1844), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (14 June 1844), 4

"A HIRED SERVANT", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 March 1847), 2

[Advertisement], The Sentinel (10 August 1848), 4 

[A CARD.] HENRY FILLMORE, Teacher, Tuner and Violin Quadrille Player, enquire at Mr. Steel's Wilmot-street opposite the Currency Lass George-street South.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (9 November 1848), 1

Bibliography and resources: cites original passenger list that Fillmore arrived in Sydney in 4 February 1841; that he was born about 1819, and that he was previously in the parish of St. Paul's, Covent Garden, London.


Organ Builder, Tuner, and Cleaner

Born St. Pancras, London, England, 20 August 1828
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 9 July 1852 (per Duke of Cornwall)
Died Hawthorn, Melbourne, VIC, 21 December 1910, in his 83rd year (NLA persistent identifier)



[Advertisement], The Argus (17 February 1853), 3

"MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS", The Argus (6 November 1872), 4s

"DEATHS", The Argus (23 March 1901), 9

"PERSONAL", The Argus (23 March 1901), 12

"PERSONAL", The Argus (25 March 1901), 5

"DEATHS", The Argus (22 December 1910), 1

"PERSONAL", The Argus (22 December 1910), 7

Bibliography and resources:

John Henwood, "Fincham, George (1828-1910)", Australian dictionary of biography 4 (1972)


Amateur musician, vocalist, violinist

Born Scotland, ? 1819
Arrived Australia, ? 1842
Died Towong, VIC, 8 November 1905


James Findlay migrated from Scotland c.1842. He took over the Towong Station in 1854 after managing the Bonagilla run, just east of Wodonga and employment with the Buchanans further east again at Tallangatta. The naturalist Ferdinand von Mueller sometimes stayed with Findlay, and named a red-flowered shrub found in the vicinity of Yellow Boy Creek "Berlayii Findlayii" after his host. Findlay and his wife and family lived on the Towong Station until 1889, when they moved to Upper Towong where James died in 1905, aged eighty-six.


"RENTS OF RUNS FOR 1867", Gippsland Times (7 December 1867), 3

"LAND TAX COURT", The Australasian (16 November 1878), 20

"A TRIP TO MOUNT KOSCIUSCO", North Melbourne Advertiser (13 May 1887), 3

"TURF GOSSIP", The Australasian (20 April 1889), 21

"CORRYONG TO JINGELLIC", Albury Banner and Wodonga Express (5 March 1897), 35

"DEATHS", The Argus (9 November 1905), 1

"Upper Murray", Albury Banner and Wodonga Express (24 November 1905), 3 

Death of an Old Resident. Mr. James Findlay, sen., formerly of Towong Station, Upper Murray, Victoria, died at his son's residence on Tuesday, 7th inst., and was interred in the Corryong cemetery on the following Thursday. The deceased gentleman was in his 87th year, and leaves a family of six sons and five daughters. Mrs. John Pierce, of Greg Greg, is one of the latter. Mr. Findlay was a fine specimen of the old school of settler, and was one of the earliest pioneers of the Upper Murray. He was a well-known horse breeder, and his equine stock and their progeny have a more than local fame. With James Findlay passes away one of the few remaining links between the past and present of this district.

Bibliography and resources:

"Findlay, James (1819-1905)", Australian National Herbarium (2011) 

James Findlay's manuscript:

This mainly manuscript volume consists of songs tunes with words and dance tunes for violin. The book is twice inscribed "James Findlay, 12th December 1841" and, in a different hand, "Mr James Finlay, Penpont Nov. 11th 1841". There is a printed vocal item, Where the thistle proudly waving (Sung by Mr. Wilson at the London Concerts written, composed . . . by George Croal (Edingurgh: Wood and Co., [n.d.]), and 2 folios from an unidentified large-format printed collection of violin or flute tunes, the four pages, 69-72 (each with an issue mark at bottom left: "No 18. 500 M."), containing 21 complete items. It can be tentatively dated to c.1846-40 by the presence of Herz's "Now the night her mantle closes", other English editions of which date from no earlier than 1836. The manuscript section is in several layers and hands. Graham Dodsworth has digitised the manuscript at the request of Findlay descendants: (NLA PANDORA)

According to Dodsworth:

It is assumed at this point [2002] that James (also known as Jim) Findlay from Penpont in Dumfrieshire Scotland compiled this mainly handwritten collection of tunes, which was found alongside four leather bound volumes, two each of Sir Walter Scott and Robert Burns, in a sea chest, in a barn, on a farm in the Upper Murray at Towong Upper by his grand-daughter, Ada Findlay [in 2000] . . . the notation of music within the book varies from tune to tune in style of notation in ways that suggest the type of quill alone is not explanation enough and that perhaps it was the owner of the books habit to ask others to notate tunes within its pages which the owner may have wished to play. Many of the tunes appear to be attributed to a 'P. McLeod' and there are other references to persons such as Wilson, Riddle, Braham, Neil Gow (fiddler) and other members of the musical Gow family from Dunkeld.

The full contents, as indexed by Dodsworth, can be accessed directly 

Dodsworth (2003-04) also taped interviews, concerning the collection and the family's musical history,

with Harry Findlay:

and Jill Findlay 



Died Bright, VIC, January 1877


"COUNTRY NEWS", Advocate (13 January 1877), 15 

A MOST distressing case of drowning (says the Ovens Register) has happened at Freeburgh, to a man named Finney, who is an old resident, and well-known in the Bright district. He had been attending a bazaar at the Chinese Camp, German Town, in the capacity of a musician, and was found dead the next morning in a waterhole. He was supposed to have fallen in on his way home. He leaves a wife and six children totally unprovided for.

FINSTER, Arthur Guido

Musician, music teacher

Active Sandhurst, VIC, by 1866



FINSTER, Alwyn Guido (Mr. FINSTER junior)

Bandmaster, piano tuner


Ballarat and Ballarat District Directory (1865), 59

The Victoria Post Office Directory (1866), 240

"FINE ARTS EXHIBITION", Bendigo Advertiser (13 September 1869), 2

Miss Finster, a lady of tender years, proved herself quite a prodigy in her brilliant execution of solos on the piano from "La Somnambula" and "Robert le Diable".

"THE LYCEUM THEATRE", Bendigo Advertiser (22 October 1870), 2

"COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT AND BALL", Bendigo Advertiser (14 November 1870), 2

"COMMERCIAL INTELLIGENCE", Bendigo Advertiser (7 January 1878), 2

[Advertisement], The Mercury (11 October 1919), 1

FIREBRACE, William Piggott

Amateur musician, vocalist

Born New Amsterdam, Guyana, 24 January 1832
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, March 1850
Died Prahran, VIC, 25 June 1908 (NLA persistent identifier)


"MR. W. P. FIREBRACE'S FUNERAL", The Argus (29 June 1908), 8 

Mr. Firebrace was born at New Amsterdam, Berbice, British Guiana, and was the eldest son of Judge Firebrace, of Demerara, a division of British Guiana. He was educated in Great Britain, and came to Melbourne in March 1850. In the following year he entered the service of the Victorian Government as a clerk in the office of the registrar of the Supreme Court under Mr J. D. Pinnock and subsequently became chief clerk. On the death of the prothonotary (Mr J. Alfred Carter) he carried on the duties of the department until 1883, when he received the appointment of prothonotary - a position he held until his retirement from active duty about 12 years ago. Besides being a great reader and collector of books, Mr. Firebrace was an enthusiastic musician. For many years he was a leading member of the choirs at St Peter's Eastern hill, and All Saints', East St Kilda. Latterly he was a constant attendant in St Paul's Cathedral, and a generous contributor to its musical library, his gifts being always representative of the soundest school of English church music.

Bibliography and resources:

"Firebrace, William Piggott (1832-1908)", Obituaries Australia


Family of Georg Caesar FISCHER and Emma Carolina Antoinetta SOBELS

FISCHER, George (George Frederick William; George Caesar; FISHER)

Musician, baritone vocalist

Arrived Adelaide, SA, 6 December 1848 (per Alfred, from Hamburg, 20 August, via Rio de Janeiro, 17 October)
Died Jolimont, Melbourne, VIC, 9 February 1882, aged 59 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


In December 1848, Fisher "lately arrived from Hamburg" advertised his willingness to sing at parties and tune pianos. With his fellow new arrivals, Frederick and Albert Seyler, he appeared in a quarterly Conversazione with Mrs. Murray in January 1849. He presented his own concerts in Adelaide in 1850 and 1851. He later settled in Tanunda, but died in Melbourne in 1882.


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", South Australian Register (9 December 1848), 3

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (23 December 1848), 2

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (17 January 1849), 2

[Advertisement], South Australian Register (27 January 1849), 2

"LOCAL NEWS", South Australian (2 February 1849), 2

"NATURALIZATION OF ALIENS", South Australian Register (21 July 1849), 1s

[Advertisement], South Australian (18 December 1849), 3

"MR. FISCHER'S CONCERT", South Australian (22 January 1850), 2

"DECLARATION OF CONFIDENCE IN MR JOHN STEPHENS", South Australian Register (7 March 1850), 2s

[Advertisement], South Australian (2 April 1850), 3

[Advertisement], South Australian (19 April 1850), 3

[Advertisement], South Australian (10 January 1851), 3

"DEATHS", South Australian Register (11 February 1882), 4

FISCHER. - On the 9th February, at Jolimont, Melbourne, George Fischer, aged 59, formerly of Tanunda.

FISCHER, Hugo (Johannes Hugo FISCHER)

Baritone vocalist, concert manager

Born Hamburg, Germany (then free state), c.1851
Married Anna Christiane CLAUSEN, Adelaide, SA, 4 December 1878
Died (suicide), Colac, VIC, 20 March 1901


Baritone vocalist

Born Tanunda, SA, 2 May 1862
Died South Yarra, VIC, 14 January 1934


"The Adelaide Liedertafel", South Australian Weekly Chronicle (22 June 1889), 15


[News], Camperdown Chronicle (26 March 1901), 2

. . .The deceased [Hugo] was about 50 years of age, and was a widower, his family being all grown-up. He was a well-built man, over six feet in height, and was a native of Germany. He came to Victoria many years ago with his brother, Mr. Otto Fischer, who is now a baritone singer in London. The deceased was also a good baritone singer, and had been a concert manager for many years, and in this capacity he was well-known through the state. He was at times agent for Mr. Ernest Hutcheson, Mr. Phillip Newbury, and other popular concert organisations, and was also a fair pianoforte player himself. The deceased was of a genial disposition, and during his short stay in Colac made many friends who will regret to learn of his tragic end.


Adelaide Liedertafel; manager for Ernest Hutcheson, Philip Newbury

FISCHER, Minna Paulina (Minna Pauline; Miss Minna FISCHER; Mrs. FLEMING; Mrs. George CLUTSAM)

Vocalist, vocal teacher

Born Tanunda, SA, 28 January 1858
Married (1) Herbert FLEMING (FLEMMING), St. Peter's, Melbourne, 28 May 1879
Married (2) George Clutsam, London, 1908
Died London, England, 7 August 1941 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Summary (NLA):

She received her early music education from Frederick Ellard in Adelaide and Lucy Chambers in Melbourne, and aged 16 joined the Italian Opera Company. After touring New Zealand and Australia and undertaking further study in Germany, she performed concerts in London and taught voice production. She married George Clutsam in London in 1908. Her pupils included her niece Elsa Stralia (d.1945)


"MUSIC AND DRAMA", Australian Town and Country Journal (20 October 1877), 24-25  

Bibliography and resources:

FISCHER, J. N. (John ? Nepomuck)

Lithographic printer, engraver, music engraver and printer, music publisher, music seller

Active Sydney, NSW, by September 1867
Died Sydney, NSW, June 1902 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[2 advertisements], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 October 1867), 1 

LOST, about the Markets, some Written MUSIC, 6s reward. J. N. FISCHER, 266, George-street.

LOST, Yesterday, four sheets of Manuscript MUSIC, in George-street, by Mr. Fisher, engraver. The finder will be rewarded by leaving the same with him, or Messrs. ELVY and CO.

"NEW MUSIC", Empire (14 November 1868), 4 

Mr. J. R. Clarke of Hunter-street, is now displaying a commendable activity in the line of publishing new music, and his enterprise should meet the approbation of connoisseurs. The last production is the "Un Ballo in Maschera Quadrilles," arranged by a gentleman who has chosen to adopt as his nom-de-plume the designation of "Carl Roslein." The engraving of the music has been executed by Mr. Fischer, a clever German . . .

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (8 January 1897), 2 

MUSIC.- Pieces for Violin and Piano, Violin Duets, Trios and Quartets by Beethoven, Mozart, Haydn, Hummel, Grieg, Schubert, Schumann, &c. J. N. FISCHER, 101 Clarence-street.

"Funerals", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 June 1902), 10 

FISCHER.- The members of the German Club and the Friends of the late Mr. J. N. FISCHER are kindly invited to attend his Funeral; to move from 10 Castlereagh-street, THIS THURSDAY [19 June], at 1.30 p.m., for the Necropolis . . .

"MUSIC", The Daily Telegraph (21 June 1902), 6 

An old musical identity in the person of Mr. J. N. Fischer passed away this week. The old viola player was the sole engraver of music in the Commonwealth, and was constantly engaged turning out music plates for the local publishing houses. His loss is a peculiar one; hitherto it has been impossible to induce skilled engravers to come out to Australia, and when the press of work was too great, manu-lithographic means have had to be resorted to, especially when the want of time precluded sending manuscripts to Europe. Consequently our music publishers now have a troublesome difficulty to face, and for some months at least all music plate work will have to be sent abroad for execution.


The name Fischer (or Fisher) does not appear anywhere in Carne's A century of harmony. But a Fischer was leader of the Philharmonic band in 1853, and (almost certainly another man) W. C. Fischer was honorary leader of the band for 5 years in the 1860s. Pending closer identification of the earlier Fischer(s), the entries are given together below.


Violinist, leader (Melbourne Philharmonic Society)


Violinist (Melbourne Philharmonic Society)

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1853


A "Mr. Fischer" ("Mr. F. Fischer") was listed as leader of the band of Melbourne's Philharmonic Society, and "Mr. Fischer" ("Mr. A. Fisher") as a violinist, in press advertisements in April 1853; by November 1854, when membership had expanded and Joseph Griffiths had taken over as leader, "Mr. Fischer" was listed among the Philharmonic's rank-and-file violins.


[Unclaimed letters], The Melbourne Daily News (6 December 1850), 4 

. . . F. Fischer . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (21 April 1853), 8 

MELBOURNE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY, PROTESTANT HALL. THIS Society has been formed for the purpose of presenting to the public a series of Concerts at which no expense shall be spared to secure the services of the first musical talent in the Colony, and to perform the compositions of the most eminent composers. The Committee also beg to state that their first Concert takes place on Monday Evening, the 25th instant, at the Protestant Hall, on which occasion they hope to receive a liberal patronage. For particulars see future advertisements. Leader of the Band, Mr. Fischer. Musical Director, Mr. George Chapman.

[Advertisement], The Argus (25 April 1853), 12 

[Advertisement], The Argus (27 April 1853), 12 

SECOND GRAND CONCERT. MELBOURNE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY, Protestant Hall, THIS EVENING, WEDNESDAY, 27th April. Principal Vocal Performers - Miss Graham (her second appearance); Mr. Moran. Leader - Mr. F. Fischer. Director - Mr. G. Chapman. THE Band will consist of the following talented performers: Violins - Mr. A. Fischer, Mr. Strebinger, Mr. Thomson; Viola - Mr Thomas; Basso - Mr. C. Elza and Mr. Hardman; Cornet-a-Piston - Mr G. Chapman; Clarionet and Oboe - Sig. Blume; Flute- Mr. Rosenstengel. Pianoforte - Mr. Hertz and Mr. Thomson . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (11 May 1853), 12 

GRAND GERMAN BALL . . . On FRIDAY EVENING, MAY 18th . . . Musical Director, Herr Fischer . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (25 August 1853), 8 

MR. FISCHER'S Subscription Ball will be held This Evening, 25th inst.. at the Tersichorean [sic] Hall, Collin's-street . . . PROGRAMME. Quadrille- First Set Quadrille, Waltz, Polka; Quadrille-Lancers, Schottische, Valse a' deux tems [temps]; Quadrille - Parisienne, Polka; Cellarius and Galop; Quadrille-Polka, Waltz Valze a' deux tems, Schottische; Quadrille Caledonian, Polka, Galop Quadrille - Parisienne, Schottische, Polka; Save the Queen! . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (12 September 1853), 8 

MECHANICS' INSTITUTION - Mrs. Hancock's Grand Vocal and Instrumental Concert . . . Leader of the Band - Mr. Fischer . . .

[Advertisement], The Age (2 November 1854), 1 

. . . The PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY Will perform Handel's Grand Oratorio, THE MESSIAH . . . VIOLINS. Messrs. Griffiths, King, Fleury, Strebinger, W. Radford, M. Radford, Ryder, Peitzker, Fischer, Newton, Lewis, and Hurst . . .

FISCHER, Wilhelm Carl (W. C. FISHER [sic, usu. 1860s]; W. Carl FISCHER; William Carl FISCHER)

Amateur violinist, conductor, composer (leader, Melbourne Philharmonic Society)

Active Melbourne, VIC, by January 1862 (or earlier)
Departed Sydney, NSW, 13 March 1897 (per Ormuz, for Europe)

FISCHER, Mrs. Carl (Sarah Jane; "Jenny" DREDGE; Mrs. William DREDGE; Mrs. W. Carl FISCHER)

Music reviewer/critic, concert annotation (program note) writer, journalist

Born Gloucestershire, England, 1834
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 1856
Married (1) William DREDGE
Married (2) Wilhelm Carl FISCHER
Died Darlinghurst, NSW, 6 October 1896, aged 62


Carl Fischer's March, "composed especially for the Festival of the German Association", was first performed on that occasion in Melbourne in December 1863. During that year and the following Fischer led the orchestra for the Melbourne Philharmonic Society, and his personal music library was source of two sets of parts performed in 1863, as the Society recorded its thanks:

At the third subscription concert, the honorary leader of the society placed at the disposal of the committee the complete parts of Meyerbeer's overture "L'Etoile du Nord," and of Weber's overture "Euryanthe." By this means these two compositions wore introduced to the Melbourne musical world. A vote of thanks was accorded by the society to Mr. W. C. Fischer for his kindness.

In 1866 he married Mrs. Sara Jenny Dredge, widow of his friend, the Philharmonic's late secretary W. G. Dredge; and in 1870, shortly before they moved to Geelong to open a ladies academy, Fischer auctioned:

Two genuine Cremorna violins, one an undoubted "Stradivarius" . . . to be disposed of by Art Union in Melbourne, on the 12th inst. They are the property of Mr. W. C. Fischer, an amateur musician of some note in Melbourne. The two instruments are valued at 200 guineas.

The Fischers were well-established in Sydney by the time this report appeared in 1881:

Some time since Mr. Lewis Scott, a well-known adapter and play-writer, in proposing the toast of 'The Press' at a picnic, said: 'The press and pressmen; may they never wear petticoats'." This was considered to be an allusion to Mrs. Carl Fischer, the [Sydney Morning] Herald critic, who is not very popular; and the other night, at the Austrian Band performance, Mrs. Fischer's husband took the opportunity to insult Mr. Scott, calling him derogatory epithets, for which Fischer was fined to-day at the Police Court in a sum amounting to three guineas. Judge Windeyer was a witness in the case.

Bankruptcy proceedings were taken against Fischer in 1890-91; nevertheless, in February 1892, he was appointed a NSW commissioner for the 1893 Chicago World Exposition. After his wife's death, Fischer and his daughter (Mrs. Inskip) sailed for Europe.


"MARRIED", The Argus (9 June 1857), 4

[News], The Argus (22 January 1862), 5 

The annual meeting of the Melbourne Philharmonic Society was held last night, in the Mechanics' Institute. There was a large attendance of members, and Mr. John Russell was voted to the chair . . . The committee also suggested that the society should consider . . . the thorough revision of the constitution and rules of the society, and the appointment of a committee of twelve of the senior members of the society, whose business would be to draw up a report on the subject generally. The report, on the motion of Mr. Williams, seconded by Mr. Jones, was adopted unanimously. On the motion of Mr. Rutter, a committee, as recommended in the report, was appointed for the objects specified. The committee consisted of Messrs. Sumner, Russell, W. G. Dredge, Rutter, Elsasser, Gould, Fischer, G. L. Allan, Jones, Moxon, Johnson, and W. H. Williams. The committee was instructed to report to an adjourned general meeting, to be held on the 18th February.

"SHIPPING", The Age (7 October 1862), 4 

IMPORTS. - OCTOBER 6 . . . D. F. Weber, Sen., from Hamburg . . . 1 case music, Carl Fischer . . .

"The Festival of the German Association", The Argus (29 December 1863), 5

"Das zweite deutsche Turn und Musikfest in Melbourne", Süd Australische Zeitung (15 January 1864), 3

"THE MELBOURNE PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY", The Argus (20 January 1864), 5

The following wore elected office-bearers for the year 1864: . . . conductor - Mr. C. E. Horsley . . . leader of the orchestra - Mr. W. C. Fisher . . . honorary secretary - Mr. W. G. Dredge . . .

At the third subscription concert, the honorary leader of the society placed at the disposal of the committee the complete parts of Meyerbeer's overture "L'Etoile du Nord," and of Weber's overture "Euryanthe." By this means these two compositions were introduced to the Melbourne musical world. A vote of thanks was accorded by the society to Mr. W. C. Fisher for his kindness; and also to Mr. W. G. Dredge, for the use of Mozart's "Jupiter" symphony, performed for the first time in Victoria at the same concert . . .

"MARRIAGES", The Argus (25 June 1866), 4

FISCHER - DREDGE. - On the 23rd inst., at Christ Church, St. Kilda, by the Rev. D. Seddon, M.A., incumbent, Wilhelm Carl Fischer, of Melbourne, only son of the late Johan Wilhelm Fischer, banker, Berlin, to Sara Jenny, widow of the late William Gilpin Dredge. No cards.

[News], The Argus (10 September 1868), 4

[News], The Maitland Mercury (5 February 1870), 2

"NEW SOUTH WALES", The South Australian Advertiser (8 March 1881), 5

"Orchestral Concerts", The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (31 May 1890), 1193 

The movement for continuing the Orchestral Concerts has so far taken definite shape that an executive committee has been appointed from the 60 ladies and gentlemen already enrolled . . . G. Norton Russell and W. Carl Fischer were appointed joint hon. secretaries and treasurers at the previous meeting . . . Mr. Fischer, from many years' connection with music in Europe and Australia, his five years' honorary leadership of the Melbourne Philharmonic orchestra, and his experience in the management of that society, brings good qualifications for the office he has undertaken . . .

"Bankruptcy Court", Australian Town and Country Journal (16 August 1890), 13

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 October 1896), 1

"DEATH OF MRS. CARL FISCHER", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 October 1896), 5

. . . Mrs. Fischer was from 1870 to 1877 the conductor of a ladies' school in Geelong, which was established on a large scale. During that period her taste for journalism induced her to contribute musical critiques to several of the Melbourne papers. In 1879 she came to Sydney, and became associated with the Sydney press. She was an indefatigable, as she was a talented writer, her specialties being musical and dramatic contributions and social notes . . . Mrs. Fischer was entrusted with the responsibility of writing annotations for the organ recitals given by M. Wiegand, the City Organist, and she also discharged a similar commission in respect of the Hazon series of concerts. In respect of Mrs. Fischer's annotations for the organ recitals Sir W. P. Manning wrote a flattering letter in acknowledgment of the ability she brought to bear upon the work . . .

"THE WEEK", The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (9 January 1897), 65 

On Monday, the 21st December, a meeting of subscribers to the late Mrs. Carl Fischer memorial fund was held at Miss Pedley's studio, Hunter street, with a view to closing the subscription list, and deciding as to the best means for disposing of the fund. Mrs. Theodore Boesen presided . . . the meeting resolved that in view of the proposed departure of Mrs. Inskip and Mr. Carl Fischer for England at an early date Captain Inskip should be empowered to place Kenneth Andrew, the grandson of the late Mrs. Carl Fischer, for whose education and support the fund has been raised, at an English school, and preferably at the school of the Rev. James Inskip.

"SOCIAL", The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (13 March 1897), 545 

FISHER, James Churchill (later CHURCHILL-FISHER)

Singing master, composer, music educator

Born Portsmouth, England, 22 March 1826
Arrived Sydney, NSW, ? December 1852
Died Parramatta, NSW, 22 March [sic] 1891, aged 65 ("his 65th birthday") (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)

Summary (after Stevens):

Fisher arrived in Sydney in 1852 and brought with him a knowledge of Curwen's method employed in his adult singing classes in Sydney. He produced the first Tonic Sol-fa publication in Australia The singing class manual in 1853 [recte 1855]. Fisher's work led to his appointment as conductor of the Sydney Choral Society. William Wilkins, secretary to the Council of Education, arranged for Fisher's appointment in 1867 as singing master to the Fort Street Model and Training School, and his method was officially adopted in public schools. Fisher also published a Manual of the tonic sol-fa method (1869) and several school song books. As a composer Fisher produced school cantatas and a secular cantata entitled The emigrants (c.1880).

Of considerable historical interest, in 1879 Fisher addressed the dispute raised by Hector McLean, among others, over Paolo Giorza, a "foreigner", being appointed musical director of the Sydney International Exhibition (McLean himself "British", despite only having arrived in Sydney from London five years earlier):

Sir. In troubling you with a few remarks on the letter of Mr Hector R. McLean, in your issue of Tuesday last, I do not share Mr. McLean's alarm and dissatisfaction at the appointment of Signor Giorza . . . I agree with Mr. McLean in his opinion that the cantata and march should perhaps have been thrown open to com petition. But I question whether much would have been gained by such a course. All experience proves that compositions 'got up to order' for special occasions are almost invariably very doubtful successes. The subjects being generally of local and ephemeral interest musical works of that character are seldom heard more than once, and certainly never by their publication repay the time, trouble, and brain waste of their production. We have few 'laureates', whether poetical or musical in Australia, and I do not think any of us, however ambitious of artistic renown, need envy Signor Giorza the barren honours he may gain by the performance of his cantata and march. Neither do I think that his nationality will induce him to ignore the claims of compositions other than those of the Italian school . . .


"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 March 1854), 8

[Advertisement], Empire (11 July 1855), 1

"CHORAL SOCIETY'S CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 May 1855), 4

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 January 1862), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (27 January 1866), 12

"TELEGRAPHIC", The Brisbane Courier (26 March 1866), 2

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (19 February 1868), 8

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (28 December 1868), 1

Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 November 1868), 6

"INSOLVENCY COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (14 November 1870), 2

"NEW MUSICAL WORK", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 June 1875), 5

"TO THE EDITOR", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 May 1879), 5

"Mr. James Churchill Fisher", Australian Town and Country Journal (22 July 1882), 17

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 March 1885), 3

"Death of Mr. J. C. Fisher", Australian Town and Country Journal (4 April 1891), 25

By the death of Mr. J. C. Fisher, which occurred at Parramatta on March 22, Australia has lost a true son of art. As a composer and musician he had few equals in Australia; and although it is not generally known, the deceased gentleman was also an artist of no mean order, some of his landscapes being worthy of more than passing praise. His first great musical composition was the Christmas cantata, Under the Holly, first produced in the old Masonic Hall, Sydney, about 1864 [recte 1866], when it made a great impression, and established for Mr. Fisher a reputation which he enjoyed till his dying day. The words of the cantata were by Mr. E. P. Whitworth. The emigrants [1875], the libretto of which was from the pen of "Australie", was produced some years later, and in some respects was more successful, than the first. The bass solo in this cantata took first prize at the New Zealand Exhibition in a contest among resident Australians for best original solo. Mr. Fisher also composed numberless capital voice exercises, dance pieces, and school songs, the latter being noted for their beautiful harmony. Mr. Fisher at one time was the possessor of an excellent tenor voice and sang with Mr. C. Santley in a duet on the occasion of that gentleman making his first public appearance in the old country. He also often sang with 'Jack' Hatton, with whom he was a fast friend. He was for several years teacher in the national schools of this colony, and his great musical abilities soon manifesting themselves he was appointed, a few years later, musical instructor under the Council of Education, which position he held till a few years back. Mr. Fisher's name is also associated with many of the leading musical societies of Sydney. The deceased gentleman had been ailing for a long time past from paralysis, and his death on March 22 cannot be considered other than a happy release. His remains were interred at Rookwood on March 23, the Rev. C. Taylor, of Parramatta, officiating.

Musical works:

Good night (MS partsong: "composed expressly for this occasion by Mr. J. Fisher" [GRAND COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT [to] W. J. CORDNER] (1862)

Under the holly (cantata; words: R.P. Whitworth) (word book only: Sydney: Reading & Wellbank, 1865

Numbers including:

The land of gold (song) (Sydney: G. Elvy, [1866]) 

I've waited and watched (ballad) (Sydney: J. Reading, [1868]) 

He's leaving his own native shore, mother (MS ballad) (1868)

The emigrants (cantata; words: 'Australie' [Emily Matilda Manning (1845-1890)] (1875) [text

Hang out the banner ([Sudan campaign] "Australian patriotic song and chorus; [words] written by O. S. Wheeler") (Sydney: By the composer, [1885]) 

Bibliography and resources:

Robin S. Stevens, "James Churchill Fisher: Pioneer of Tonic Sol-fa in Australia", in Jane Southcott and Ros Smith (eds), Community of Researchers: Proceedings of the XXIInd Annual Conference (Melbourne: Australian Association for Research in Music Education, 2002), 172-182

FISHER, Thomas Edmondson

Musician, bandmaster, mayor of Grenfall, composer

Born France, February 1830
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 1852
Died Grenfell, SA, December 1912


[Advertisement], The Grenfell Record (4 October 1879), 2

"SONG", The Grenfell Record (25 November 1882), 2

"The Hospital Ball", The Grenfell Record (12 November 1898), 2

. . . For some time past, there had been indications that the mobilisation of Mr. Fisher's orchestra was in progress: oft in the stilly night the air vibrated with the deep tones of the double bass, at the offset, causing dwellers in suburbs or the stranger within the gate to wonder whether they heard a voice from the tombs, or the warning note of Mr. Wragge's latest meteorological demon, Marco Polo. Coming nearer, many other instruments were heard under skilful manipulation, and one harmonious whole evidenced the successful efforts of a strong combination: cunning players upon stringed instruments, persuasive whisperers into brazen ears; a deft tintinabulator of ivories, and a r-r-r-rat-tat-tatter on the tenor-drum . . . On Wednesday night, the music was a great attraction, and completely justified anticipation. The band, winch was stationed below the stage, and occupied an orchestral-like enclosure, not far from the madding crowd, consisted of: - First violin, Mr. T. E. Fisher; second violin, Mr. R. Newman; cornet, Mr. J. Quigley; piano, Mr. E. H. Howarth; 'cello, Mr. T. Rabbets; double bass (string), Mr. W. Rabbets; tenor drum, Mr. H. Howarth (Mr. J. Dickinson - trombone - was unavoidably absent). Conductor, Mr. T. E. Fisher.

"OBITUARY", The Grenfell Record (17 December 1912), 2

. . . Mr. Fisher was born in France, but his school days were passed at Everton, Lancashire; he would have been 83 in February next. He received a superior education, and had travelled in many parts of the world. He was an excellent musician, and was at home with many instruments, and this accomplishment enabled him to render invaluable service, both in the social life of the town and in aid of its many institutions. Mr Fisher came to Grenfell in 1866, and with the exception of a short residence in Parkes, from whence he returned in 1875, has been here ever since, and for many years and until quite recently, was senior partner in the well-known firm of Fisher and Frazer, of the Union Brewery. For many years he took an active part in the chief affairs of the town, and was perhaps the most outspoken and independent of all our public men . . .

FITTIPALDI, Eduardo (Chevalier FITTIPALDI; Signor; Edvardo)

Pianist, teacher, conductor, composer

Born Italy, 1844/5
Arrived Victoria, by February 1884
Died Mosman, NSW, 27 June 1910, aged 65 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"INVITATION CONCERT", Hamilton Spectator (21 February 1884), 2 

[Advertisement], The Horsham Times (14 March 1884), 4

[News], The Argus (24 October 1890), 4

[News], The Argus (9 January 1891), 5

The Victorian Orchestra gave its usual bi-weekly concert at the Town-hall last evening. There was a good attendance, and the programme proved thoroughly interesting to the audience. The opening number was a novelty in the shape of an overture by Chevalier Fittipaldi, a Melbourne musician. It was composed in 1887 as the prelude to an opera under the title of "Bianca Capella" which has never seen the light of the stage. The overture is written in a good style, and met with a favourable reception . . .

"SIGNOR FITTIPALDI'S ARRIVAL", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 July 1907), 12

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 June 1910), 8

Musical works:

List unto my pleadings (romanza; words from the Italian by Albert G. Dawes; music by E. Fittipaldi) (Melbourne: Atkin, Crawford &​ Co., [188-]) 

For Britain, one and whole (song for one or two voices written and composed for the Imperial Federation League of Victoria, words by H. D' Esterre Taylor; music by Chevalier Ed. Fittipaldi) ([Melbourne]: G. Tytherleigh for the Imperial Federation League of Victoria, [1895?]) 


Theatrical dancer, professor of dancing, school-master

Born c. 1802
Active Sydney, NSW, by January 1834
Died Forest Lodge, Sydney, NSW, January 1886, aged 84 years (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (11 January 1834), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Herald (13 January 1834), 3

"THE THEATRE", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (14 January 1834), 2

Between the play, and After-piece, Mr. Fitzgerald performed a Comic Dance in such a manner, as justly called forth the warmest plaudits of the audience. Mr. F. would be considered no contemptible acquisition at the second rate London Theatres.

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", Australasian Chronicle (9 January 1841), 2

[Advertisement], The Australian (27 October 1846), 2

. . . Aboriginal dance, by Mr. Fitzgerald . . .

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 May 1847), 2

"Funerals", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 January 1886), 14 

THE FRIENDS of the deceased Mr. DENNIS FITZGERALD (first dancing master of Sydney) are respectfully invited to attend his Funeral; to move from his late residence, 77, St. John's-road, Forest Lodge, THIS (Monday) AFTERNOON, at quarter to 2 o'clock, for the Necropolis. ROBERT F. WOOD and CO., Undertakers, 807, George-st. S.; and Darling-st., Bal'n.

"THE LIVES OF GREAT MEN", Western Herald (4 February 1891), 2 

JOSEPH STAUNTON DONOHOE, ESQ. . . . Mr. D. married in 1879, Miss Rebecca Ryan, the daughter of well-known Sydney journalist. Mrs. D's. grandfather (Mr. D. Fitzgerald) was the first professor of dancing in the colony, and was master of the King's School, Parramatta . . .


Musician, choir trainer, school-mistress

Born Ireland, 1785
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 2 July 1811 (per Providence, with convict husband)
Died Sydney, NSW, 31 July 1861, aged 76


Choral singer, historian

Born Dublin, 1810
Died Goulburn, NSW, 8 November 1877, in his 68th year


Having lived at Parramatta and Windsor, the Fitzpatricks moved into Sydney in 1817, and shortly afterwards Catherine formed a choir for the Catholic chapel, which originally met at the house of James Dempsey, as her son Columbus remembered in 1865:

I knew [James Dempsey] when I was a boy; he was then a rich man and used to often say nothing on earth gave him so much pleasure as to have it in his power to oblige a Catholic . . . when Father Therry came to the Colony [in 1820] he was surprised and delighted to find a couple of boys able to serve Mass and a good few people who could sing the church services, for my mother and a man named McGuire used to meet at Mr. Dempsey's to teach the youth of both sexes to sing, long before the arrival of Father Therry.

Catherine apparently continued to train and direct the choir into J. J. Therry's tenure, though, on Columbus's testimony, probably handed over control to the military bandmasters Joseph Reichenberg and Thomas Kavanagh while they were in Sydney between 1824 and early 1827.

Thereafter, according to Lea-Scarlett and Smith, Catherine continued directing the choir, and Waldersee noted an incident, one Sunday in April 1829, when she engaged in a dispute with the priest Daniel Power, who "went up into the gallery where Catherine and two of her sons were singing in the choir. An argument ensued and the priest finally turned the Fitzpatricks out." A year later when St Joseph's Chapel opened, she continued to conduct a choir there into the early 1830s. Columbus's Reminiscences, published originally in newspapers in the 1860s, are our main source of specific information about Catholic chapel music in the 1820s, and in particular details of the activities of Reichenberg and Kavanagh and their bands.


"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 August 1861), 1

"DEATHS", Australian Town and Country Journal (17 November 1877), 41


"REMINISCENCES OF CATHOLICISM IN THE EARLY DAYS OF THE COLONY (To the Editor of the Goulburn Argus.)", Freeman's Journal (25 November 1865), 741

Bibliography and resources:

E. J. Lea-Scarlett, "Fitzpatrick, Columbus (1810-1877)", Australian dictionary of biography 4 (1972)

Kit Smith, "The Veech Library Australian church music collection", The Australasian Catholic Record 82/2 (April 2005), 189-201

Edmund Campion, "A Tradition in Voice: Catherine Fitzpatrick", in Great Australian Catholics (Richmond: Aurora Books, 1997), 14

J. Waldersee, "Father Daniel Power", Journal of the Australian Catholic Historical Society 2 (1967), 37

C. J. Duffy (ed.), Catholic religious and social life in the Macquarie era: as portrayed in the letters of Columbus Fitzpatrick (1810-1878) (Sydney: Catholic Press Newspaper Company, Ltd., 1966), 17-19

Patrick O'Farrell, Documents in Australian Catholic history: 1788-1883 (Sydney: G. Chapman, 1969), 32-33


Blind musician

Born Ireland, 1804/5
Died Sydney, NSW, 26 September 1879, aged 74


"Coroner's Court. SUICIDE BY DROWNING", Evening News (29 September 1879), 2

The city coroner held an inquest this morning at his offices in Hyde Park on the body of Thomas Fitz-Patrick, aged 74, a musician, and a native of Ireland . . .

"CORONER'S INQUESTS", The Sydney Morning Herald (30 September 1879), 3



Active Beechworth, VIC, 1858 (? see above)


"SMALL DEBTS", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (25 May 1858), 2

Thomas Fitzpatrick v John Mitchell. A claim for £2 10s for services as a musician. Verdict for complainant 16s and costs.



FITZ-STUBBS, Madeline Schiller (Mrs. Frank BLADEN)


FITZ-STUBBS, Percy (Thomas)

Go to main page Thomas Stubbs and his descendents: 

FLANNAGHAN, James (bandmasterm 58th Regiment)


FLATAU, Berta Maud

Composer (aged 10 years)

Born Morpeth, NSW, 28 June 1871
Died Forest Lodge, Sydney, NSW, 17 November 1882, aged 11 years


"BIRTHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 July 1871), 1

[News of the day], The Sydney Morning Herald (16 May 1882), 5

"Music and Drama", Australian Town and Country Journal (27 May 1882), 12

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 November 1882), 1

Musical work:

The Berta waltz (composed by Berta Maud Flatau, aged 10 years) (Sydney: Elvy & Co., [1882]) 


Lecturer on music

Active Kew, VIC, 1859


[News], The Argus (27 August 1859), 4 


Musician, band musician

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1850


"THE VAGRANT ACT", The Argus (12 December 1850), 2

. . . Charles Fletcher . . . was also charged with being a vagrant. He admitted that music was his "profession", and that he had been brought up to it from infancy. He was . . . discharged upon the distinct promises that he would eschew music for the rest of his life . . .


Violinist, band and orchestra leader

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 1853 (from Mauritius)
Died Calcutta, India, 31 October 1875 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Possibly the Achille Fleury active in opera orchestras in Rouen in 1833. Billed as "M. Fleury, from the Mauritius, the best solo violin known in the colonies", he first appeared for fellow violinist Joseph Megson in Melbourne in April 1853. In June, at James Ellis's new Salle de Valentino, he advertised a series of Promenade Concerts a la Muzard. "The Modern Paganini", as he was billed by George Lewis as Astley's in 1855, stayed on in Melbourne leading theatre and concert bands throughout the 1850s. An advertisement from August 1855 lists the members of his band at the Salle de Valentino.

Fleury relocated to Ballarat between 1858 and 1862, and, in addition to continuing his musical activities, was contentiously granted a publican's license in 1859. He toured to New Zealand with George Loder in 1862, and stayed on in Otago, later in Canterbury where in 1872 he was declared insolvent, and Dunedin. During these years he returned to Australia to lead George Loder's Lyster opera orchestras in Sydney and Brisbane in 1865, and Allen's Royal English Opera Company on tour in 1875. He died of dysentery while with Allen's company in Calcutta.


[Advertisement], The Argus (5 April 1853), 12

[Advertisement], The Argus (13 June 1853), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 June 1853), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 June 1853), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 June 1854), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (24 May 1855), 8


[Advertisement], The Argus (18 August 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (2 August 1859), 8

"News and Notes", The Star (16 November 1859), 2

[Advertisement], Otago Daily Times (22 October 1862), 3

"THE OPERA", Empire (25 April 1865), 4

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (1 July 1865), 1

"MEETING OF CREDITORS", The Press (31 January 1872), 3

"DEATH OF MONS. ACHILLE FLEURY", Bendigo Advertiser (21 December 1875), 2 

The mail from India brings news of the death of Mons. Achille Fleury, composer and violinist, the leader of the orchestra of Madame Alice May's Opera Company, and one of the oldest, as he was one of the best, conductors of an orchestra in the colonies. Mons. Fleury will be best remembered in Melbourne in connection with a grand series of promenade Concerts given at the Salle de Valentino, Spring-street (after the style of Jullien, with whom he was a fellow-worker at the Parisian Conservatoire), some twenty years since. He succeeded in making a very considerable fortune from his profession, but lost it afterwards in mining speculations. Mons. Fleury was one of the earliest to leave the colony during the first New Zealand rush, and after trying the goldfields he settled at Dunedin, where he played during the visit of H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh, at his H.R.H.'s request, a solo of his own composition, the merits of which were rewarded by the Prince with a present of a handsome diamond ring. He also ordered it to be printed, and took a thousand copies. M. Fleury was of an advanced age, and had for years been a martyr to rheumatic gout. The change of climate from the acute colds of New Zealand to the equally acute heat of India doubtless accelerated his death. He will be universally regretted in the profession. - Herald.

"DEATH OF M. FLEURY", Southland Times (27 December 1875), 2

[News], The South Australian Advertiser (11 March 1876), 4

"VIOLINS AND VIOLINISTS", The Ballarat Star (11 June 1888), 3 

. . . It comes next to say something of violin players; not of birds of passage like Miska Hauser, Wilhelmj, Remenyi, Rhodes and Poussard, but of performers who are or have been identified with our own City of Ballarat. Those whose memories carry them back 30 years, to the days of uncomfortable tents, and dirty stringy-bark huts, will of course remember two popular places of resort, the "Charlie" and the "Victoria," each supporting a capable orchestra, led respectively bv two French musicians, Mons. Fleury and Mons. Palzer [wic]. Mons. Fleury, with his long fair hair floating over his shoulders in massy curls, his coat sleeve lined with pink silk well turned back, is described as presenting an airy and fantastic appearance. He handled his violin with a light and jaunty air, and his playing was of that brilliant rippling kind, which charms the ordinary listener without allowing the artist to be lost sight of. Of Palzer it is said that he disdained the whimsical style of Fleury, aiming at a solidity that accorded well with his personal appearance. Dark, with close cropped hair, and scrupulously neat and prim in dress, his violin-playing was neat and crisp, without a trace of slovenliness, but wanting in the dash and go which characterised the performances of Fleury. Both appear to have been really good violinists, and when playing side by side, as sometimes occurred at the Philharmonic concerts, their styles united with excellent effect, each seeming to supply what the other lacked; Fleury impatient when a solid passage had to be negotiated which did not admit of display - Palzer in his element; for his breadth of tone and rigid accuracy found here their appropriate sphere. How a passage would occur in which the fairy whispers of Fleury's fancy revelled, and as his lingers flew along the instrument he would shake back his wavy ringlets, his visage beaming with enjoyment; while Palzer, rarely smiling, peered through his spectacles, and bending to his work, did it conscientiously, but apparently with less interest than possessed him in the more difficult passages. Those were the days of Lola Montez, the famous dauseuse, to whom Palzer dedicated a pretty schottische, named after that erratic but fascinating creature. In a few years, however, a change came over Ballarat. People began to settle in homes, and to incline less to the "Charlie" and "Victoria," with the play first and the dancing afterwards; music in its higher branches became neglected; the talented violinists, Fleury and Palzer, had to go, and with them went the orchestras, which for years in the rough times had given delight to all who had a taste for the good things they remembered to have heard in the European centres . . .

"OPERAS OF LONG AGO", The Register (11 April 1925), 10

Bibliography and resources:

Adrienne Simpson, Alice May: Gilbert and Sullivan's first prima donna (New York & London: Routledge, 2003), 61 (PREVIEW)

Joann Élart, Catalogue des fonds musicaux conservés en Haute-Normandie: Tome I (Rouen: Universite de Rouen, 2004), 154, 239, 250

Doggett 2006

Clare Gleeson, "Begg's: the musical and electrical centre", Audio Culture: the noisy library of New Zealand music, posted 12 January 2016 

The second original musical edition published by Begg's, Dunedin polka (1869) was dedicated to a visiting royal [prince Alfred]. The composer, Monsieur Achille Fleury de Reaisson [sic], was a Frenchman who led the orchestra at Dunedin's Princess Theatre.

FLIGHT, Oscar (senior)

Musician, violinist, conductor

Active Bendigo, VIC, by c. 1884


Flautist, songwriter, navigator

Born Donington, Lincolnshire, England, 16 March 1774
Active Australia, 1795-1800, 1801-03
Died London, England, 19 July 1814, aged 40 (NLA persistent identifier)


Flinders's father recorded spending 8 shillings buying his son a German flute in November 1788, when the boy was 14 (Dooley). Flinders's journals and letters, especially during his detainment at Mauritius, mention music and playing his flute among his principal solitary and social pastimes (also briefly noted in his A voyage to Terra Australis, vol.2, 393:, especially playing his part in duos and quartets by Ignace Pleyel.

Original lyrics:

My Evening Song (Why Henry didst thou leave me, thus leave me here to mourn?) (MS song, music "by Haydn" [unidentified], words by Flinders, left incomplete at end, sent from Mauritius to his wife Ann, November 1805)

MS at National Maritime Museum, Greenwich; facsimile in Catharine Retter and Shirley Sinclair, Letters to Ann (Sydney, Angus and Robertson, 1999), 76. Edition by Gillian Dooley

Bibliography and resources:

H. M. Cooper, "Flinders, Matthew (1774-1814)", Australian dictionary of biography 1 (1966)

Gillian Dooley, "My Evening Song", Alas! for the pelicans: Flinders, Baudin and beyond: essays and poems (Adelaide: Wakefield Press, 2002) 123-25;  archived at Flinders University academic commons

Gillian Dooley, "'When tired of writing, I apply to music': music in Matthew Flinders' life", Journal of the Britannia Naval Research Association 5/1 (2011); archived at Flinders University academic commons

"Matthew Flinders", Wikipedia

FLOOD, William Haydn

Professor of music, teacher of the pianoforte, composer

Born England, 1830
Active Melbourne, VIC, 1862-63 (formerly organist of St. Mary Redcliffe, Bristol [1855-62])
Died Wellington, NZ, 17 July 1908


"ST. GEORGE'S, GLOUCESTER", The Music Times (1 April 1860), 252

[Advertisement], The Argus (6 December 1862), 3

[Advertisement], The Argus (24 February 1863), 7

Le Bouquet de Victoria Quadrilles (most respectfully dedicated to the Ladies of Victoria, by W. HAYDN FLOOD, professor of music, teacher of the pianoforte.

[News], The Argus (4 March 1863), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 March 1863), 7

"BIRTH", Daily Southern Cross (20 July 1866), 4

"PERSONAL", Wanganui Chronicle (21 July 1908), 4

Mr. William Haydn Flood, who died in the Ohiro Home on Saturday, says the "Times" at the age of 78 years, was an old Maori war veteran, having served in the Wanganui Cavalry. The deceased, who was an able musician, practised as a music teacher in Napier many years ago. He was a First Life Guardsman and witnessed the funeral of the Duke of Wellington. In 1867 he was appointed conductor of the Wanganui Choral Society, and was also for a time organist of Christ Church, Wanganui.

Bibliography and resources:

"William Haydn Flood", Wikipedia

Works (NZ):

The Akaroa waltz (for the pianoforte by W. Haydn Flood) 

The Canterbury Volunteer galop (for the piano forte by W. Haydn Flood) [1875] 

The Clifton waltz (for the piano forte by W. Haydn Flood) [18-?] 

FLOWER, Sara (Miss FLOWER; Miss S. FLOWER; Madame Sara FLOWER; Mrs. Sam HOWARD)

Go to mainpage: 

FOANS, James Milton (J. M. FOANS)

Serenader, minstrel, publican

Born USA, c. 1816
Active Sydney, NSW, by November 1852
Married Margaret HENSHAW, Sydney, NSW, 27 July 1853
Active Brisbane, QLD, until c. 1876
Died ? (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


[Advertisement], Sacramento Transcript (8 February 1851), 2 

THE SABLE HARMONISTS respectfully announce to the public of Sacramento that they will give another Concert on Saturday Evening, February 8, 1851, At Lee's Exchange. The company consists of the most taleuted performers that have visited this country, viz: H. MESTAYER, R. MOORE, H. DONNELLY, T. KING, E. VAN RENSSELAER, J. M. FOANS. On which occasion they will produce all the latest Songs, Glees, Choruses and Dances of the day. Prices of Admission First Tier, $1; Boxes, $1.50. The room will be well lighted. jan24

United Grand Lodge of England Freemason Membership Registers, 1751-1921

Australian Lodge of Harmony / Sydney, N.S.W. / James Milton Foans / 37 / Musician / 17 August 1853

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 May 1858), 1 

AMERICAN AMPHITHEATRE, Prince of Wales Theatre. - Complimentary BENEFIT to JAMES M. FOANS, under the special patronage of Captain O. S. Lovell, of the Royal Artillery, who has kindly conceded, for this night only, the services of his celebrated band. The present appeal to the Sydney public originates from the numerous kindly feelings manifested towards Mr. Foans by a large circle of friends and admirers, amongst whom he is proud to state Messrs. Rowe and Marshall stand prominently forward; they having, upon hearing the circumstances attending Mr. Foam's loss of license, proffered, in the most handsome manner, the use of their noted troupe and stud for a FREE BENEFIT on his behalf. Mr. Foans engages that bis "bill of fare" shall satisfy the greatest of theatrical gourmands, the most hypercritical of judges, and the laughter-loving, mirth-seeking community at large; and when, in corroboration of the above, it be told that the Incomparable and world-famed Hernandez, the classic Raphael, the astounding De Vere on the corde volant, the Gymnasts in their feats of strength, the Shakespearian Clowns in their "motley garbs," with their "quips, and cranks, and merrie gibes," - and the best vocal and Instrumental performers in Sydney, including the Artillery Band, - will be in the programme for that evening's entertainment, together with Mrs. Oates, the pleasing soprano, who will sing with Mr. Foans the favourite duett of "What are the Wild Waves saying!" and Mr. F. himself, in his much admired ballad, "We met by chanoe," as well as in the characteristic dance and chorus of "Lucy Long." The beneficiaire feels assured that a numerous and discriminating auditory will not be wanting on this occasion to show their estimation of him as one of the original Rainer's Serenaders, a general caterer for their amusements, and also aa a respectable member of the corps dramatique. N.B.- Further particulars in future advertisements.

Bibliography and resources:

Lois M. Foster, Annals of the San Francisco stage, 1850-1880, volume 1 (San Francisco: Federal Theatre Projects, 1936), 82 

On January 15 [1851] the "Sable Harmonists" made their first appearance at the Jenny Lind. McCabe lists members of this company as follows: R. Moore, H. Mestayer, C. Fisher, H. Donelly, T. King, J. M. Foans, E. Van Ranselaer. The troupe played here until the 19th, returning in February for a run which began in the Parker House saloon and ended in the theatre upstairs, February 22 to 28. This troupe, with some changes, appeared two years later under the same name at the Adelphi and did its part to further the momentum of minstrelsy in the west.


Itinerant musician

Died Richmond, VIC, 5 August 1874


"NEWS OF THE DAY", The Age (6 August 1874), 2 

Yesterday morning, between seven and eight o'clock, a man named John Fogart, an itinerant musician, was taken to the Richmond lockup in a dray, having been found lying in an insensible condition on a footpath in Rule-street. The watchhouse-keeper at once sent for Dr. Ryan, who attended immediately, but found Fogart in articulo mortis, and he died shortly afterwards. From inquiries made by the police it appears that the unfortunate man has been in the habit of playing at night in the bars of public houses, and that he was a hard drinker. On Tuesday night he and a mate named Cleary were playing in the Rose of Richmond Hotel, which place they left about midnight, both being then under the influence of liquor. They went to Clenry's lodging, where they arrived between two and three o'clock and Cleary went to bed, but the deceased went into an outhouse and lay down there. Shortly before seven o'clock Cleary's land lady got up and went to the shed for some wood to light her fire, and found the deceased lying there. She told Cleary, who got up and called deceased, and they went away together. Subsequently they went to the house of a man named Chester, living in Rule-street, and deceased asked to he allowed to go to bed there; but as Chester did not know him he would not permit him to do so, and he then proceeded up the street alone, and was not again noticed until found as described. The deceased appears to have been about forty-five years of age. He was very lightly and wretchedly clad. It is said that he was unmarried, but that there are four children dependent on him. An inquest will be held.

FOLEY, Bartholomew

Hymn singer, executed convict

Executed Sydney, NSW, 14 July 1814


"EXECUTIONS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (16 July 1814), 2

On Thursday Bartholomew Foley, condemned for sheep stealing at Port Dalrymple, was also executed. He came a prisoner to this Colony about 13 years ago, a boy not exceeding 12 or 13 years of age . . . From the moment of his condemnation, however, he became the repentant sinner - the prodigal restored to hope. His temporal destiny he acknowledged to be just, and hoped forgiveness of his crimes in Heaven, as his penitence was sincere and full. At the place of execution he appeared with that firmness which the hope of mercy can alone bestow upon a suffering criminal. He sung two hymns, loudly, distinctly, and with such animated fervour as to give peculiar melody to his accents . . . About nine o'clock he was launched into eternity . . .

FOLLY, Mr. (? William JOLLY)


Died Melbourne, VIC, 1 August 1862

But see also William Jolly


[News], The Argus (2 August 1862), 5

Yesterday forenoon, a Frenchman named Folly, a musician, residing in Lansdowne-street, North Melbourne, was found dead in his own house, his throat cut, and a razor covered with blood lying at his feet. The last time he was seen in life was about four o'clock on the previous afternoon, when he appeared to be sober; but he had been drinking lately. He was also understood to be in trouble about his wife and family, who are in France. It is presumed that the deceased committed suicide, and an inquest will be held on the body to-day.

"THE NEWS OF THE DAY", The Age (2 August 1862), 5 

A musician, named Wm. Jolly, a Frenchman, was found dead in his own house, Lansdowne street, North Melbourne, yesterday, with a deep incision in his throat . . .


Professor of the Flute on Nicholson's principle, flautist

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1856


[Advertisement], The Argus (13 February 1856), 1

[Advertisement], The Argus (29 March 1856), 10

FORD, A. F. (Mr. A. F. FORD; Mr. A. FORD; Mr. FORD)

Comic vocalist, agent

Active Sydney, NSW, 1853


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 September 1853), 5 

ROYAL HOTEL. MR. SINCLAIR has the honor to announce that he intends giving a Vocal and Instrumental Concert, at the above Hotel, on THURSDAY, September 8th, when he will be assisted by the following artistes: Mrs. St. John Adcock, Miss Flora Harris, Mr. Roby, Mr. Ford, and Herr Hoffman. A. F. FORD, Agent.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 September 1853), 1 

ROYAL HOTEL. GRAND CONCERT. THIS EVENING, Monday, September 12th, 1853.
Miss Florra Harris, Mr. Sinclair (from the London and Provincial Theatres, his first appearance in this colony.) Mr. John Howson, Mr. Roby, Mr. A. Ford, and Mr. Ferdinand Rosenstein, the celebrated Pianist. MR. SINCLAIR begs to inform the public that his concert, which was postponed on Thursday Evening, in consequence of an accident in the family of Mrs. St. John Adcock, will positively take place THIS EVENING, when he hopes to meet with the same support so generously afforded him on that occasion.
Programme: - PART I:
Overture - Mr. Ferdinand Rosenstein
Ballad - The Voice that bids us Welcome
Home - Wrighton, - Mr. John Howson.
Ballad - In Happy Moments - Wallace,- Mr. Roby
Ballad - There is a Flower that Bloometh Wallace - Mr. Sinclair.
Ballad - Phoebe Morel - Miss Flora Harris.
Grand Scena - All is Lost Now - Bellini - Mr. John Howson.
Duet - Gently Sighs the Breeze - Miss Flora Harris and Mr. John Howson.
Overture - Mr. Ferdinand Rosenstein.
Ballad - I Must Depart from Thee - Glover - Mr. Sinclair, first lime in this colony.
Pestal - Mr. Roby.
Ballad - When we Recall the Happy Scenes - Balfe - Mr. John Howson.
Ballad - When I left my Nornma Valleys - Meyerbeer - Miss Flora Harris.
Comic Song - Mr. Ford.
Recitative and Air - Death of Nelson - Braham - Mr. Sinclair.
Duet - What are the Wild Waves Saying - Miss Flora Harris and Mr. John Howson.
Tickets for front seats only, to be had at the Royal Hotel, and all principal music sellers. Admission - Front seats, 4s.; back seats, 3s. Commence at Eight o'clock precisely.

FORD, Thomas

Professor of music, choral conductor, tenor vocalist, government singing master, singing class instructor, conductor and secretary (The Musical Union)

Born Bristol, England, c. 1826; son of Thomas FORD (d. VIC, 1883) and Elizabeth CARRIER (d. VIC, 1878)
Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1861
Died Ivanhoe, VIC, 19 June 1921, aged 89 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


His brother, Alfred (d. 1921), a public notary, was also an amateur singer, as was his sister, Miss Ford.


{Advertisement], The Argus (29 September 1860), 8 

[Advertisement], The Argus (23 February 1861), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (25 July 1861), 8 

MUSICAL UNION-REHEARSAL THIS EVENING. Band at 7, Mozart's Symphony in D. Chorus at 8, Mendelsohn's St. Paul. THOMAS FORD, Hon. Sec.

[Advertisement], The Argus (9 October 1861), 8

"THE ORPHEUS UNION", The Herald (6 November 1862), 5 

"AMUSEMENTS, &c.", The Age (25 April 1863), 6 

On the ovening of Good Friday, the oratorio of "Elijah" was performed at the Theatre Royal, in accordance with our usual custom, by the Musical Union, the chief singers being Mr. Farquharson, Mr. Ford, Miss Octavia Hamilton, Miss Mortley, and Miss Beaumont. The oratorio was most successfully rendered.

[Advertisement], The Argus (25 March 1867), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (3 July 1867), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (7 October 1867), 8

"THE ORPHEUS UNION CONCERT", The Argus (15 October 1867), 7

After a long and unexplained silence, the Orpheus Union gave last night the third concert of the season, leaving on the minds of the audience at its conclusion a sentiment of thankfulness that this excellent little society still remains intact. Were there a dissolution, it would be greatly missed, for it has a sphere of large usefulness to occupy, not only in nourishing a love of part-singing, which is apt to be too much neglected in favour of more pretentious displays, but in supplying a want only purtially met by the "philharmonic" associations of the metropolis. We may then sincerely congratulate the Union upon its re-appearance, and hope that, under the able conductoiship of Mr. T. Ford, its future career will increase its credit.

"RECEPTION OF THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH", The Argus (21 November 1867), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (13 January 1868), 8 

MR. THOMAS FORD'S SINGING CLASSES, Mechanics' Institution, Melbourne. - Members are respectfully requested to attend on Wednesday evening next, January 15, 1868. Elementary class, half-past 7; advanced class, half-past 8 o'clock precisely.

"HORSLEY AND KENDALL BENEFIT CONCERT", The Argus (29 August 1870), 7

[Advertisement], The Argus (19 January 1871), 8

[News], The Argus (13 September 1872), 5

[News], The Argus (8 May 1876), 4

[Advertisement], The Argus (6 February 1880), 8

"SIDELIGHTS ON THE SIXTIES", The Argus (5 December 1916), 5

Among those classes for whom these forms of amusement had no attraction we find at this time a widespread interest in the cultivation of vocal and instrumental music. The Philharmonic Society was already an institution of some years' standing; while in the late fifties various suburban singing classes and glee clubs had come into being. In 1860 a "Musical Union" which strove to foster the formation of a good amateur orchestra, and an "Orpheus Union", in which part-singing was to have its highest development, began their closely-associated career, Mr. Thomas Ford, who is still enjoying a green old age amongst us, being honorary secretary of both bodies. It is noteworthy that at the first public concert given by the Musical Union, on May 10, 1860, when the "Creation" was produced in a church in George street, Fitzroy, the tenor soloist was a young clerk of 17 or 18, named Edward Armes Beaumont, who shortly afterwards was to enter upon a career as an operatic singer, which terminated recently enough to make it a sort of connecting link between present and past generations of music-lovers . . . The Orpheus Union practised for about twelve months in private before venturing to invite public criticism. On February 27, 1861, they took part in a concert given in the Mechanics' Institute (now the Athenaeum), in Collins street, before an audience consisting of the Governor (Sir Henry Barkly), Lady Barkly, and "nearly all the professional celebrities and well-known amateurs and musical connoisseurs in the city". Mr Ford's recollections of this occasion are interesting. The first item, rendered by the part-song society, was Mendelssohn's "Song of the Night", and when its members, taking their cue from a softly-hummed keynote, rose to their feet and burst forth into harmony without any instrumental accompaniment, the audience sat spell-bound, under a new sensation. The close of the number was received in breathless silence, and as the singers resumed their seats a whisper went round among them that their initial effort had been a failure. But the rapturous applause which greeted them when they stood up to essay their second number soon re- moved the misapprehension; and the news-paper report of the concert admits that "the Orpheans established their right to high consideration".

"Reunion of old Pupils", The Argus (19 November 1917), 8

More than 150 former pupils of the Church of England Grammar School, North Melbourne, of which the late Percy Walker was principal, met in a reunion at the Francatelli Cafe on Saturday night. The "girls" were specially invited. Representatives of Essendon and the John Marshall associa tions were present, as were Captain J. Haughton, a former teacher, and the old singing master, Mr. Thomas Ford. The director of Education regretted his inability as an old boy to be present . . .

"DEATHS", The Argus (20 June 1921), 1

FORD. - On the 19th June, at his residence, 130 Ford street, Ivanhoe, Thomas Ford, J.P., beloved brother of Alfred Ford, of Ivanhoe, aged 89 years. (No flowers.)


Orpheus Union/Musical Union (founded 1860) (honorary secretary, conductor); South Melbourne Glee and Madrigal Society (conductor)

Bibliography and resources:

"Thomas Ford", Residents of Upper Beaconsfield, Upper Beaconsfield One-Place-Study, Person Page 158 

John Houghton Hinds . . . applied for a license to occupy his selection of 320 acres (amended to 319 acres 3r 38p) in the Parish of Gembrook on 7 May 1874 . . . On 2 June 1880 he transferred the leased property to Thomas Ford of St Vincent's Place Albert Park, Professor of Music - Music Master. The transfer fee was 5/-. Ford applied to pay the difference between the total rent paid and the value of the property @ £1 per acre. Ford obtained freehold title to the land on 17 November 1881 when he paid the balance of the money for the land [Property Titles.; Public Records Office Victoria, C/T 1315-927 - Thomas Ford of Albert Park Music Master]

FORD, William

Bookseller, printer, music retailer, music publisher

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1844
Died Pambula, NSW, 6 January 1901, "a colonist of 57 years", aged 82 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

FORD, Frederick


Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1847

See also; 


Formerly of Exeter, England, the "master printer" William Ford arrived in Sydney in 1844. As a stationer and bookseller and printer, William first traded alone in George Street, often advertising catalogues of large shipments of music. In October 1847 he advertised that he had "admitted my brother, Mr. Frederick Ford, recently arrived from England, a partner." Ford printed and published Isaac Nathan's musical and literary works from 1846 until 1848. Their business was taken over by Waugh and Cox by October 1853.


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (4 February 1847), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 October 1847), 3

"EXPORTS", The Shipping Gazette and Sydney General Trade List (18 March 1848), 71

. . . 1 case music, 1 case books, 2 cases China goods, W. and F. Ford; . . .

Query - Isaac Nathan's Southern Euphrosyne and offprints? 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 August 1850), 1 

THE PEOPLE'S TUNE BOOK, a collection of OLD, NEW, AND ORIGINAL CHURCH MUSIC, suited to all the varieties of METRICAL PSALMODY, and adapted as well for Social and Domestic Devotion as for Public Worship. ARRANGED FOR FOUR VOICES, with an Accompaniment for the Organ or Pianoforte.
Booksellers and Publishers,
554, George-street.

"MARRIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 April 1851), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (21 October 1853), 1

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 January 1901), 1

Bibliography and resources:

Neidorf 1999, 169

FORD, William Henry (W. H. FORD)

Theatrical and musical memorist and historian, costumier, "Father of the Australian stage"

Born Bermondsey, London, c. 1830
Arrived Sydney, NSW, by c.1850
Married Catherine SNELLING, Sydney, NSW, 1857
Active Melbourne, VIC, by c. 1869
Died Fitzroy, VIC, 26 June 1916, aged 87 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)



Stepson of William Henry FORD
Married Phoebe SIMMONS Died Balmain, NSW, 1914

FORDE, Florrie


Born Collingwood, VIC, 1875
From . . . stepdaughter of Tom FORD
Died 18 April 1940


? Register of baptism, Wesleyan Chapel, China Terrace, Lambeth, 1808-1837; RG4/4345 

William Henry son of William and Ann Ford was born on the sixteenth Day of August in the Year [1831] in the Parish of St. Mary Lambeth in the County of Surry Registered this 30th day of Oct. 1831 by me Jos'h Entwisle Minister.

"MUMMER MEMOIRS", Sydney Sportsman (16 December 1908), 2 

. . . I am not quite 80 years old, I am now in my 79th year . . . I came to Sydney in 1848, just 60 years ago. I did not play in Charles Kean's Company, as I was with Barry Sullivan the whole time the Keens were in Australia. They may intend McKean Buchanan; I was with him. I was not with Charles Mathews; I was travelling when he was here. Likely enough they mean Julia Mathews. I was for some years in the same company with her. That I did appear at 6 years of age is quite true, not that I did anything wonderful, but I admit I was a "hard case" when I was that age, and being my grandmother's "boy". I pretty well hard "the run of the ship." My grandmother was connected with Astley's years before I was born; she was a great favorite with every one in the theatre, and "Little Billy," meaning my self, was petted by the ladies of the company. I was a favorite with the stable hands; I loved to be among the horses. I was on the stage in nearly every piece, as Mr. Ducrow used to admire scenes that had youngsters in them. It is also correct that I was at both the Surrey and Victoria Theatres. I was nothing great, but I was useful. I did much better as a nipper at 6. I used to hear my grandmother speak of the Kings. The fourth George was a great patron of Astley's. On the tops of the bills were always the words, "Under the patronage of King George IV.", with the Royal arms. King George IV presented the theatre with a magnificent chandelier, as I mentioned previously. I may be the oldest living actor of the English stage, as it is 72 years since I commenced (in 1836). When Mr. George Coppin was alive, he was the "father" of the English stage; I know that I come next. However, it does not matter. I am very poor, and the honor of being "father" of the English stage will not bring grist to the mill. Mr. Coppin, Mr. R. Stewart, senr., dear Nellie, and Mr. Bland Holt, were all good to me. I would have been all right but for the financial crisis of 20 years ago, when I lost all my savings, some thousands, as did many other retired members of the profession. I have one "friend," however, that always sticks to me - the gout. I have him in both feet and both hands; it is a terrible affliction . . .

"AT POVERTY POINT", The bulletin (6 August 1914), 9 

Tom Ford, recently dead in Sydney, was for a long term an identity in Melbourne. His step-father, W. H. Ford, ran a theatrical costumier’s business, and Tom was his right-hand man. Ford, sen., was dresser to G. V. Brooke, who was very partial to young Ford. The latter was a good vocalist and banjoist. A few years ago he returned to his native land, and there snuffed out. He had a sister, Maggie, well known on the stage, now resident in Sydney, and better known as Mrs. Allan Hamilton. W. H. Ford may be safely called the father of the stage, as some 80 years ago he was appearing in an act with his parents, who were members of Ducrow’s famous equestrian company in London. He also strutted his hour or so upon the stage, running shows in N.S.W. and Queensland as far back as 60 years ago. He claims to have given Shiel Barry (Andy Donohue) his first start, and was costumier to Wm. Saurin Lyster through most of his operatic campaign. Although hurrying on to his 90th year W. H. F. still enjoys fair health.

"DEATHS", The Argus (27 June 1916), 1 

FORD. - On the 26th June, at 170 Brunswick street, Fitzroy, William Henry Ford, the beloved father of George, Jack, and Cyril Ford, Mrs. G. P. Carey, Mrs. G. Lister, Mrs. Allen Hamilton, Mrs. Phillips, and Mrs. MacDonald, in his 87th year. Requiescat in pace.

"FUNERALS", The Argus (28 June 1916), 1 

"THEATRICAL PERSONALITIES", Winner (28 June 1816), 10 

"AT POVERTY POINT. T. O. I.", The bulletin (6 July 1916), 9 

W. H. Ford, the reputed "Father of the Stage," died last week at Fitzroy (Vic.), in his 86th year. He had been an invalid for many years. Born in London, of theatrical parents, in 1830, he was on the stage at Astley's at seven years of age. In the late 'forties he came to Sydney and applied for employment at the Victoria, then open only three days a week. The caretaker advised him to look for some other job, as the stage meant starvation in Sydney. So he went on a station in what is now Queensland; and at Christmas he converted the woolshed into the Theatre Royal, Tarampa, for the amusement of the Cameron family and visitors. Several entertainments were given, and two cattle-buyers from Brisbane advised him to start shows in that township. On this suggestion he built the first theatre in Brisbane, and later another in Ipswich. Thus he drifted back to Poverty Point. When Johnson built the old Scandinavian Hall, Castlereagh-street (the Sydney Tivoli is now on the site), W. H. Ford became the mana ger. Prior to that he had been associated with G. V. Brooke, and later with Barry Sullivan, as costumier. He tried Maoriland with Clarence Holt in the early 'sixties, but the climate crippled him. He had numerous children well known in the profession, among them George, Jack and Cyril Ford, Mrs. G. P. Carey, Mrs. G. Lister and Mrs. Allan Hamilton.

FORDE, Joseph Michael (Joseph Michael FORDE; J. M. FORDE; "Hayseed", "Old Chum")

Theatrical and musical memorist

Born c. 1840/41
Died Hazelwood, NSW, 10 May 1829, aged 88


Blind musician, organist

Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1869


[News], The Argus (1 February 1869), 5

. . . a boy named Henry Forder, only ten years of age, and so small that those in the room could scarcely see him perched on the organ stool, performed a voluntary on that instrument, the theme of which was Handel's Hailstone Chorus. He had only been a pupil for four or five months, and his instrumentation was surprising. The musical education of the children reflected great credit upon Mr. Greenwood's teaching, as did their general appearance upon the general management.


H. Forder, the well-known blind musician, who is an inmate of the asylum, played on the organ. 1882: It has been mentioned to us that Henry Forder, a former pupil of the institution has lately been appointed organist at the Presbyterian Church, St. Kilda.

[News], The Argus (31 March 1882), 5

"A WORLD WITHOUT LIGHT", The McIvor Times (26 April 1883), 3

"BLIND MUSICIANS", Grey River Argus (23 August 1898), 3

"A SENSATIONAL BOLT", The Argus (12 December 1900), 8

A sensational bolt took place in High street, Armadale, yesterday afternoon about 4 o'clock, which resulted in injuries to Mr Henry Forder, a blind piano-forte tuner, living at 110 Newry street, North Carlton, and also to his wife, Kate.

"MELBOURNE GOSSIP", Examiner (18 January 1907), 8

"HARMONY AND DISCORD", The Argus (22 January 1907), 8


FORSYTHE, Sophia Maria (Miss FORSYTH, the juvenile pianiste)

Juvenile pianist, vocalist, dancer

Born ? Scotland, c.1835
Arrived Sydney, NSW, July 1842 (assisted immigrant per Earl of Durham, from London)
Departed Sydney, July 1845 (for England)
Married Charles BATLEY, Paris, France, 24 July 1852 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Sophia arrive in Sydney in July 1842 with her mother Margaret (widow of a Major Forsythe), apparently as assisted immigrants per the Earl of Durham, the same ship on which Maria Hinckesman came. Sophia first appeared in public, billed as "a JUVENILE PIANST, from London (only eight years of age), pupil of Miss Hinckesmann" at her teacher's 12 October concert at the Royal Hotel. According to W. A. Duncan, she "played some variations on Rossini's Non più mesta exceedingly well . . . and a waltz of no very thin or juvenile construction" (the variations most likely some, if perhaps not all, of Henry Herz's famous op. 60 set).

Another concert was organised for Sophia's own benefit by leading local professionals (including the Band of the 80th Regiment) in January 1843, no doubt in response to her mother's financial plight (Margaret was declared insolvent later that month). Having meanwhile taken vocal lesson with Madame Gautrot, she was advertised, as well as playing a piano solo, to sing a duet with Eliza Gibbs. Hinckesman, however, did not appear at the benefit (plausibly, as Sophia's teacher, she was one of Margaret's creditors). The press documented nothing further of Sophia until January 1845 when a fancy ball was advertised, again for her benefit, at the Royal Victoria Theatre. A second benefit ball was held for Sophia in July, "previous to her departure for England", during which she introduced another new talent, dancing the "much admired Cachouca".

Sophia was not the first to dance the "much admired Cachouca" (perhaps to the castanet song Cachoucha by Charles Blondel) in the colonies. Rachel Lazar had done so in 1839 in Sydney and 1841 in Adelaide, and Mrs. Brock and Mr. J. Chambers had done so again in Sydney in March 1842. A import parcel of music sold by J. K. Heydon in June 1843 included print editions of "Quadrilles, waltzes, mezourkas, cachouchas, galops, contre dances, &c."


"THE MUSICAL WORLD", The New South Wales Examiner (13 July 1842), 3

We are informed that by the Earl of Durham, the musical world has received a valuable addition by the arrival of Miss Hinckesmann, together with Mrs. and Miss Forsythe. Miss Hinckesmann, it is said, was pianist to her Majesty Queen Victoria, and will in the course of a few weeks give a concert in Sydney - the full particulars of which will be shortly announced.

[W. A. Duncan], "MISS HINKESMANN'S CONCERT", Australasian Chronicle (13 October 1842), 2 

. . . In fact, [Miss Hinckesman's] style, particularly in legato passages, may be characterised as decidedly good, and we have no doubt shat she will prove a very eligible instructress, as indeed the debut of her young pupil proved. This very young lady played some variations on Rossini's "Non più mesta" exceedingly well, and on being encored, substituted with good taste a waltz of no very thin or juvenile construction. There was a fair attendance, though a much larger audience might have been expected if sufficient publicity had been given to the intended performance.

"Miss Hinckesmann's Concert", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 October 1842), 2 

We were much pleased to see a good attendance at Miss Hinckesman's concert on Wednesday evening. The fair Bénéficiare, though labouring under great nervous excitement, displayed talents as a pianiste, that decidedly qualify her as a teacher. Her juvenile pupil contributed at least as much as her own performance to justify her claim to the latter title . . .

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 January 1843), 3 

Mr. and Mrs. Gibbs's first appearance at a Concert in Sydney. A GRAND EVENING CONCERT will be given at the Royal Hotel, on Wednesday, January 11th, to commence at eight o'clock for the Benefit of Miss Forsythe, the JUVENILE PIANIST, who will appear as a Vocalist on this occasion . . . Mrs. Gibbs (who will sing a duet with Miss Forsythe, pupil of Miss Hinckesmann, and Madame Gautrot) . . .

"CONCERT", The Australian (11 January 1843), 2

"THE CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 January 1843), 3 

"INSOLVENT COURT", The Australian (27 January 1843), 3 

SCHEDULES REGISTERED JAN. 24. Margaret Forsyth of Castlereagh-street, Sydney widow: amount of debts, £120 1s.; assets. £89 15s.; deficiency, £31 6s.

"SCENE AT THE ROYAL HOTEL ON THE CONCERT NIGHT OF THE JUVENILE PIANIST", The Satirist and Sporting Chronicle (4 February 1843), 2 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (28 January 1845), 3

"FANCY BALL", The Australian (29 January 1845), 3

A Fancy Ball is to take place at the Royal Hotel this evening, for the benefit of Miss Forsythe, whose precocious musical accomplishments have obtained for her a name and celebrity in New South Wales. We hope that the young lady will be well supported, and from the preparations that have been made, we doubt not that a numerous assemblage of the young ladies will take place. Mr. Alderman Wilshire and other respectable citizens have, we are informed, signified their intention of patronising Miss Forsythe.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 July 1845), 1

A GRAND FAREWELL BALL for the benefit of MISS FORSYTHE, previous to her departure for England, at Mr. Clark's Assembly Rooms, King-street on WEDNESDAY, July 9, 1845 In the course of the evening Miss Forsythe will play some favourite airs on the pianoforte; and will also dance the much admired Cachouca.

"MARRIED", Empire (7 January 1853), 2 

MARRIED, At the British Embassy, Paris, on the 24th July, 1852, Sophia Maria, only daughter of the late Major Forsythe, to Charles Batley, Esq., Maida Hill, London. Miss Forsythe gained much celebrity in Sydney, some few years back, as the Juvenile Pianiste.

FORTUNE, Mary Helena

Poet, songwriter

Born Belfast, Ireland, c.1833
Arrived Victoria, 1855


"SONG OF THE GOLDIGGERS. By M. H. F.", Bendigo Advertiser (27 December 1855), 3

Bibliography and resources:

"Mary Fortune", Wikipedia

FOSTER, Joseph

Musician, cornet player, teacher, drum-major (40th Regiment)

Born c. 1826
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 5 November 1852 (with regiment per Vulcan, from Cork)
Died Hotham, VIC, 1 October 1872, aged 46 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

See also Band of the 40th Regiment (second tour)


"DEATHS", The Argus (10 October 1872), 4 

FOSTER. - On the 1st inst at his residence, Cobden Street Hotham after a long and painful illness, Mr. Joseph Foster, formerly drum-major H.M. 40th Regiment, and late of the Victorian Volunteer Carlton Rifles, aged 46 years. Home papers please copy.

"FLAGSTAFF HILL. By EDWARD C. O. HOWARD", The Argus (24 March 1823), 9 


. . . In 1851 I lived near the west end of Latrobe street close to the spot where the soldiers of the 40th Regiment were under canvas pending the completion of the iron barracks close by. The band of the regiment, under the conductorship of Mr. Johnston, whom I remember well, was exceptionally good. It played frequently at the officers' quarters in the evenings, and the music was much appreciated by neighbours. Drum-Major Foster was a fine looking man, more than 6ft. in height, and at the head of the regiment he was a commanding figure. He was a wonderfully good cornet player, and he gave lessons on that instrument. One could hear the bugles and kettle-drums in the early mornings on the slope of the hill leading down to the swamp . . .

ASSOCIATIONS: Edward Cussen Ormond Howard 1839-1934

FOWELL, Newton Digby

Midshipman, amateur musician, guitarist, contact reporter

Born South Brent, Devon, England, 30 July 1868
Arrived Botany Bay, NSW, 20 January 1788 (midshipman per Sirius, from Portsmouth, 13 May 1787)
Died at sea, 25 August 1790 (NLA persistent identifier)


Fowell was a junior officer on the Sirius on its voyage to Australia in 1787-88. Before leaving England, he added at the end of a letter to his parents dated 4 March 1787:

There is Music for Rosina set for the Guitar. Thank you to send it if the ship comes to Porstm[ou]th.

Presumably from Shield's Rosina, if it did indeed arrive with him in Australia, it is the earliest identification of an actual copy of a piece of art European music to have been landed. If he also brought a guitar, it may have been, along with Worgan's piano, one of the first European instruments imported. So, too, the fife Fowell mentioned in another letter (12 July 1788), reporting on events on his third day in the colony:

January 21 [1788]. The Governor accompanied by Capt. Hunter & some other officers went in Boats to examine Port Jackson . . . The next day [22nd] one of the Party took a fife on Shore played several tunes to the Natives who were highly delighted with it especially at seeing some of the Seamen dance.

See in chronicle: 


Letter, Newton Fowell to his parents, 4 March 1787; SL-NSW, ML MSS 4895/1/7 (PAGE IMAGE)

Letter, Newton Fowell to his parents, 12 July 1788; SL-NSW, ML MSS 4895/1/18, page 5 (PAGE IMAGE)

Bibliography and resources:

Newton Fowell Papers and Letters in the Mitchell Library [transcripts], University of Sydney, SETIS

Heather Clarke, "Sailor's hornpipe", posted 10 February 2011, Australian colonial dance


Clarinette player (Band of the 12th Regiment)

Active Sydney, NSW, 1859


[Advertisement], Empire (4 July 1859), 6


Band of the 12th Regiment

FOWLER, Frank (Francis Edmund Town FOWLER; Frank FOWLER)

Journalist, playwright, writer on music

Born Pimlico, London, England, 12 August 1833; son of Charles and Jane FOWLER
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 4 December 1855 (assisted immigrant per Kate, "22 / short hand reporter")
Married Rachel CLARKE, NSW, 9 February 1856
Departed Melbourne, VIC, April 1858 (per Royal Charter, for Liverpool)
Died Kensington, London, England, 22 August 1863 (NLA persistent identifier)

FOWLER, Mrs. Frank

= Rachel CLARKE, Mrs. G. F. JACKSON


Fowler wrote a characteristic preface for the deluxe Australian album 1857 published by Jacob Clarke, who also published Fowler's literary journal The month. Fowler's Eva ("ostensibly based on Uncle Tom's Cabin") played at the Lyceum in Sydney in August 1856, with music by John Winterbottom.

Fowler also commented on Sydney and Melbourne music in his Southern lights and Shadows (esp. page 34 below), published after he returned to London. However, an editorial in the Sydney Empire in July 1860, on the subject of mendacious testimonies of returned Australian colonists, cited as bywords:

. . . the ridiculous falsehoods of FRANK FOWLER, or the inventions attributed to MISKA HAUSER.

Fowler's most interesting and substantial musical remain, however, is the bullocky song, transcribed in Southern lights, below

While in Sydney in 1856, Fowler married Rachel Clarke. Their eldest son was Frank Harry Fowler (below), musician and composer. Rachel and her children returned to Australia after Fowler's death. She remarried, and was active as a singer and music teacher as Mrs. G. F. Jackson.


List of immigrants per ship [Kate] . . .; December 1855; State Records NSW 

Fowler Frank / 22 / Short hand reporter / Pimlico Midd'x / Charles & Jane Mother at Pimlico Father dead / . . .

[Advertisement], Empire (25 December 1855), 1

"OUR LYCEUM. EVA", Empire (26 August 1856), 4

"REVIEW", The Sydney Morning Herald (6 July 1857), 8

[Editorial], Empire (17 July 1860), 4

"DEATH OF MR. FRANK FOWLER", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 October 1863), 8

Published works:

Preface to Australian album 1857 (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, 1857)

. . .The idea of a purely musical album - that is, a book filled with the original productions of our own artistes - is, I think, peculiarly happy, and one which the Australian public will readily appreciate. The value of such a work must be apparent to every one. For instance: Miska Hauser - may the shadow of his Cremona never grow less! - enraptured us all with that glorious bit of musical tessellation called the Bird on the Tree; and yet had not the publisher of this book obtained the composition from the Miska it must have been entirely lost and forgotten . . . And so with other pieces in this volume. They are all new - all colonial. Here, in this city - they were played, printed, and published. True, some of the composers are foreigners; but still this book is as much an Australian production as a cluster of grapes from the German vineyards at Kissing Point. We can send the work home as a specimen of what we can do out here at Botany Bay - as an index of our education, refinement, art-feeling. And it is fitting we should attest our social progress by some unusual publication of this character. Nothing else will do it so completely and so well. It vindicates our connexion with old-world genius and skill; and proves that we are not destitute of some of the haughty lineaments of European civilization.

Southern lights and shadows: being brief notes of three years' experience of social, literary, and political life in Australia (London: Sampson Low, 1859)


(34) . . . The "Prince of Wales" was generally devoted to opera, and here I have heard Bellini, Meyerbeer, and even Verdi and Beethoven as carefully rendered as at any theatre in London, the two Italian opera houses only excepted. Madame Anna Bishop was generally first-lady, Miss Sarah Flower contralto; Messrs. Laglaise and Coulon - not quite unknown names - tenor and bass; and Messrs. Lavenu and Loder, men of some English reputation, leaders of the orchestra. At the "Prince of Wales" I heard a Miska Hauser fiddle. He plays Beethoven like Ernst, Paganini like Sivori . . . 

(108) . . .. . . This bullock-driving cannot be a very pleasant life, although there is a certain smack of romance in camping out at night with a mob of oxen bellowing around, and the companion-drivers on watch attending to the fires - where the damper is cooking and the iron kettle boiling for to-morrow's breakfast - or only leaving their warm occupation for the warmer one of driving in "strays," with song and shout loud enough to make the deserters scamper. These bullock-songs are uncouth snatches generally improvised by the drivers themselves, but not destitute of a wild, runic poetry, as the following verses from one of them will show: -

Olle! heigh-ho!
Blow your horns, blow,
Blow the Southern Cross down if you will;
But on you must go
Where the fresh gullies flow,
And the thirsty crane wets his red bill.

Olle! heigh-ho!
Drink, boys, as we go,
Pass the brandy - let each take his fill:
On, "Strawberry," on,
Run, "Blossom," come run,
There is light enough left for us still.

Olle! heigh-ho!
"Blossom," gee-woh,
There is water spread out for us here,
Fill horns while you may,
There is no one to pay,
But Mine Host up above, for such cheer!

[Of course "any schoolboy" knows the Southern Cross is the great Constellation of Transpacifica.]

[109] Now, there may be some who object to that last line; but to me, when I heard it roared out by an olive-complexioned semi-ruffian tearing along after a mob of cattle with a brandy flask and revolver at his side, and the moon rising above a mass of "mackerel" clouds, and throwing long level lines of light upon a more advanced portion of the herd standing, some with their heads turning back, upon the summit of a wooded hill, in the distance, - I thought that same last line, rudely clothed as the idea involved in it may be, really orthodox and devotional. Strange that the boisterous fellow who, in these Australian solitudes, first thundered out the song after his loitering cattle, should have thought of Mine Host at all!

Bibliography and resources:

S. B. Clark, "Fowler, Francis Edmund (Frank) (1833-1863)", Australian dictionary of biography 4 (1972)

FOWLER, Frank Harry (Frank FOWLER junior)

Musician, teacher, composer

Born Sydney, NSW, 11 March 1857
Died Sydney, NSW, 10 December 1893, aged 36 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

FOWLER, Fannie Adele (Mrs. Frank Harry FOWLER)

= Fannie Adele ELLARD = Miss Ethel ADELE


Son of the author and journalist Frank Fowler (1833-1863) (above). In 1885, Frank junior married the pianist, and later actor, Fannie Adele Ellard (who appeared in public as Miss Ethel Adele), only daughter of the pianist and composer Frederick Ellard. Having returned to Sydney with his Sydney-born mother and musician, Rachel, after Fowler senior's death in London in 1863, Frank was a pupil of Charles Packer.

His mother, who had since remarried the singer and composer G. F. Jackson, had been a pupil of Bennett Gilbert in London, and in September 1875, mother (as Mrs. G. F. Jackson) and son advertised jointly in Sydney as teachers of singing and piano.


"BIRTHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 March 1857), 1

"SCOTTISH CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (25 May 1875), 5

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 September 1875), 1

"Marriages", The Sydney Morning Herald (24 November 1885), 1

"MISS SHERWIN'S FAREWELL CONCERT", The Brisbane Courier (10 October 1887), 7

One of the notable features of [Amy Sherwin's farewell] concert was the excellent performance by the orchestra under Dr. Walters's baton, of a set of waltzes entitled "Triste Pensieri", which has just been written by Mr. Frank Fowler, of Brisbane. This gentleman has long enjoyed a high reputation both as a pianist and composer, but we think this latest work excels anything he has as yet given to the public. These waltzes contain none of those tiresome musical, or rather non-musical, maunderings which seem to be the stock-in-trade of most waltz writers of the day. They are original conceptions, crisp and tuneful, and treated in a thoroughly musician-like manner.

"THE AUSTRALIAN MARSELLAISE", Warwick Argus (28 July 1888), 2

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 December 1893), 1

[News], The Brisbane Courier (20 December 1893), 5

Mr. W. A. Caflisch, in a letter warmly appreciative of the late Mr. Frank Fowler, a well known Brisbane musician, who died very suddenly in Sydney a few days ago, makes an appeal which is likely to meet with hearty response. Mr. Fowler, he tells us, has left a widow and four children, the youngest only a few weeks old, almost if not quite unprovided for. The appeal is to Mr. Fowler's old friends, to his pupils, and to all musicians, both professional and amateur, that they will do something to help in their deep affliction the family of one who never allowed the suffering to appeal to him in vain.

"BRISBANE LIEDERTAFEL", The Brisbane Courier (23 May 1894), 6

"MARRIAGES", The Argus (17 January 1914), 13

"FUNERALS", The Sydney Morning Herald (13 August 1928), 9

"Miss Ethel Adele", The Brisbane Courier (20 August 1928), 12 

? "FIFTY YEARS AGO", The Courier-Mail (7 December 1937), 12

Musical works:

The Australian Marseillaise (words: A. Meston) (Brisbane: H. J. Pollard, [1888]) 

The Queensland national march; supplement to Queensland Figaro (26 May 1888) 

FOWLER, George

Serpent player, bandsman (Band of the 99th Regiment)

Born Tottenham, Middlesex, 17 January 1822
Regiment active Australia, 1843-56
Died Hobart, TAS, 14 August 1910


"THE BAND OF THE 99TH", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 September 1844), 3

[Advertisement], The Australian (29 November 1845), 1


Band of the 99th Regiment

FOWLER, Robert

"Professor of dancing"

Active Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 1846


Fowler, sometime barber, was before the court in Hobart in 1846 for running an unlicensed "dancing school" at which Barnard Hill assisted as violinist.


"DISORDERLY HOUSES", Colonial Times (31 July 1846), 3

We are pleased to find that some attention has been bestowed upon the prevention of a nuisance - to call it by the mildest term - which prevails to some extent in this city: we mean the existence of disorderly houses, unlicensed, and therefore illegal. On Wednesday, a case was brought forward at the Police-office, by the Senior District Constable, Mr. Symonds, against Robert Fowler, on an information charging him with keeping, on the 18th of July, a certain room for the purposes of public entertainment, to wit, dancing, &c., the same not being licensed according to law: for this offence the defendant had rendered himself liable to a penalty of £50 and costs. Mr. Symonds conducted the case for the prosecution, and Mr. Wynne appeared on behalf ot Mr. Fowler.

"POLICE", The Courier (1 August 1846), 2

Robert Fowler was brought before the Bench on Wednesday, on an information preferred by Senior District Constable Symons, charging him with keeping a disorderly house. Mr. Wynne appeared for the defendant, and the case occupied a great part of the morning. It appeared in evidence that the wile of the defendant has recently advertised the opening of a Board and Lodging House, "in the London style," in Macquarie-street, the defendant carrying on his business of a barber, in Liverpool-street, but eating and sleeping at the new establishment. Over the stairs leading to the first floor, the defendant had caused to be painted, in conspicuous characters - "Dancing School!" - The large upper front room was cleared of every vestige in the shape of furniture, except two or three stools, upon one of which sat an aged man of the name of Barnard Hill, with a cracked fiddle, from which he produced, for the dancers, not notes "in liquid sweetness long drawn out," but the description of rude sounds which it is his wont to draw forth for the boisterous revellers alt wakes and weddings. It appeared that the persons who resorted to the school to take lessons of this antediluvian "professor" of the divine arts of music and graceful motion, were men and women of bad character; so much so, indeed, that several respectable residents of the neighbourhood have been afraid to leave their premises after night-fall, under an impression that their property would be insecure. Dancing, quarrelling, and fighting were kept up all night, to the scandal of public morals and the peace of the neighbourhood. Fowler's defence was, that he was not responsible, as the establishment belonged to his wife, and not to himself. It was proved, however, that he stood at the door of the "Dancing School" every night, and exacted an admission fee . . .

FOX, Mrs. (Mrs. FOX)

Vocalist, pianist (Castlemaine Philharmonic Society)

Active Castlemaine, VIC, 1850s-60s


FOX, Sarah Hannah (Miss BEAUMONT; Mrs. J. H. FOX)

Soprano vocalist

Baptised 16 December 1838, Ingham, Norfolk, England
Married John Henry Fox, Victoria 1856
Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1857
Active Adelaide, SA, 1861-63
Died North Melbourne, VIC, 17 June 1913, aged 74 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


One of two active singer sisters of tenor Armes Beaumont, Sarah (married John Henry Fox, ? Melbourne 1856) was one of Melbourne's leading soprano vocalists for over 20 years, first as an oratorio soloist for the Melbourne Philharmonic in the late 1850s and 1860s, and later, following her brother's move to the dramatic stage, appearing in opera roles in the early 1870s.


[Advertisement], The Argus (23 December 1857), 8

"PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY'S CONCERT", The Argus (26 December 1857), 4

"TOPICS OF THE DAY", The South Australian Advertiser (23 July 1863), 2 

In reference to a paragraph which appeared in yesterday's paper, we are requested by Mrs. J. H. Fox to state that her brother, Mr. E. A. Beaumont, was at Canterbury with Messrs. Poussard and Douay's company, convalescent, on June 19. The party had been so successful there, that they intended performing throughout New Zealand.

"PHILHARMONIC CONCERT", The Argus (6 September 1865), 5

"GALATEA SECUNDA", The Argus (4 October 1867), 5


[Advertisement], The Argus (16 June 1870), 8

"ORPHEE AUX ENFERS", The Argus (30 March 1872), 6

"DEATHS", The Argus (21 June 1913), 13


Bibliography and resources:

"Beaumont, Edward Armes", Obituary Australia



Died Dapto, NSW, 1856


Mark St. Leon reports a German musician, Harry FRAHLIG, who died at Dapto NSW in July 1856 while travelling the Illawarra with Ashton's circus (possibly also identified as H. Felix).

Bibliography and resources:

Mark St. Leon, "Horseman or no horseman: circus in Van Diemen's and, 1847 to 1851", Tasmanian Historical Research Association: Papers and Proceedings 55/2 (July 2008), 86-107

FRANCIS, Benjamin

Amateur vocalist, merchant, publican

Born ? UK, c.1796
Active Sydney, NSW, 1826 (Sydney Amateur Concerts)
Died Sydney, NSW, 18 May 1873, in his 78th year


[Advertisement], The Australian (29 December 1825), 4

"MR. SIPPE'S BENEFIT CONCERT", The Monitor (13 October 1826), 5

Braham's delightful song, "Is there a heart that never loved", introduced a candidate for vocal fame, viz. Mr. B. Francis; this gentleman possesses a voice at once melodious and powerful, and needing only cultivation and a greater degree of confidence. Reiterated cries of encore were at length silenced by a repetition of this universal favourite.

[Advertisement], The Australian (3 January 1827), 2

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 May 1873), 1 

FRANCIS, Sophie (Madame FRANCIS)

Pianist, teacher of music and French

Arrived Melbourne, VIC, October 1854
Died Fitzroy, Melbourne, VIC, 29 November 1873, aged 57


"Pianist, pupil of Thalberg and of the Conservatoire Opera de Paris, arrived by the Calcutta, begs to inform the nobility and gentry of Melbourne, that she will give instructions on the pianoforte, after a new method, which has been so successful in England." Her death was reported in Fitzroy late in 1873: "Sophie Francis, aged 57, a teacher of music and French. She was always called 'Madame Francis,' and said she had no relatives."


[Advertisement], The Argus (21 October 1854), 8

"INQUESTS", The Argus (5 September 1873), 6


Organ-blower (amateur)

Active Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 1834


? Died Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 30 December 1838 (NLA persistent identifier)


"Mr. Gordonovitch's concert . . .", The Hobart Town Courier (31 October 1834), 3

. . . Mr. A. Frankland kindly assisted Mr. Leffler in his performance on the Seraphine, a new instrument, combining in a small compass the sostenuto effect of the organ with the distinctness and sweetness of the piano forte; Mr. A. Frankland, on this occasion, by means of a pedal, inflated the instrument with air - he was much applauded.

[Advertisement], The Austral-Asiatic Review, Tasmanian and Australian Advertiser (14 April 1840), 3 

Seraphine. FOR Sale, a remarkably fine-toned Seraphine, late the property of Mr. Frankland, deceased; or it will be exchanged for a Piano Forte. Apply to Mr. Reichenberg, opposite the Barrack Gate. April 13, 1840.



Active Tasmania, 1854-55


The early advertisements for The Tasmanian Lyre in November 1854 refer to the inclusion of a "Galop, by Miss Fraser", though the work that finally appeared in March 1855 was the The Louisa Schottische (Hobart: Huxtable & Deakin, [1855]).


[Advertisement], The Courier (13 November 1854), 3

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (9 March 1855), 4


Precentor, singing class instructor

Active Bendigo, VIC, 1856


"PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH", Bendigo Advertiser (15 August 1856), 3

. . . the chief object of the meeting . . . was to present their late Precentor, Mr. Fraser, with a mark of the esteem and respect the congregation bore him, and a slight memento of their grateful appreciation of his valuable services during the last eighteen months, while leading the psalmody of the congregation . . . They afterwards proceeded to elect a Precentor in the place of Mr. Fraser; and the establishment of two flinging classes was agreed on - one perfectly elementary, the other more advanced.

FRASER, Katherine Sandell (HILL; Madame Colborne FRASER)

Pianist, teacher, composer

Arrived Sydney, NSW, by January 1876 (from Canada and USA)
Died Surry Hills, NSW, 26 October 1883, aged 39


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 January 1876), 2

MRS. COLBORNE FRASER, Teacher of Vocal and Instrumental Music. Pupil of "Thalberg" "Brinley Richards" and "Loder." Mrs. Fraser has been a teacher for ten years - was organist at the Church of the Ascension, in Chicago, U.S., but ill-health obligated her removal to a warmer climate, The following testimonial from Mdlle. Ilma De Murska will speak for itself: - "I have heard Mrs. Fraser, play, and can certify that she is a very good musician and can recommend her as a clever teacher of music . . .

"PROTESTANT HALL", The Sydney Morning Herald (5 October 1881), 6

[News], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 January 1882), 6

"PENRITH POLKA", Australian Town and Country Journal (29 April 1882), 27 [795]

"READING AT THE TEMPERANCE HALL", Evening News (29 August 1882), 3

"MRS. COLBORNE FRASER'S CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (19 July 1883), 8

"Deaths", The Sydney Morning Herald (27 October 1883), 1

FRASER, Simon (junior)

Precentor, singing instructor

Active Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), by 1847


? [Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (14 July 1821), 1s

[Advertisement], The Courier (27 November 1847), 5

Vocal Music. THE undersigned intends, on the second Monday of January next, to open a VOCAL MUSIC SCHOOL for the reception of pupils (juvenile and adult), where the advantage of all the scales will be correctly explained and taught, and especially adverting to the table of transposition, without a knowledge thereof many who are not readily brought to see the necessity of thus transposing the semitones in the manner described, because they cannot perceive more difficulty in singing a tune in E with four sharps, than in C without any. The table of transposition will be taught with the solfeggio, which is according to the established rules of modulation and harmony; this will at once strengthen the pupil's mind, and show forth the science in its true light. The solfeggio, on which the science so much depends, will be taught and read in every key in the different series; after the learner has made himself perfect master of the scales and tables will attend to the first lessons for practice, &c. Terms for teaching, £3 3s. per quarter. Simon Fraser, Junr., Precentor, St John's Church, Macquarie-street.

"DIED", Colonial Times (13 January 1853), 2

"THIRTY POUND COURT", The Mercury (8 February 1861), 2

"COURT OF REQUESTS", The Mercury (8 March 1861), 2

Simon Fraser sued John Ross, Henry Davidson, and Robert Mc'Cracken wardens of St. John's Presbyterian Church, for £25, two quarter's salary as Precentor, to the 31st December 1860 . . . Plaintiff deposed that he performed the duties of Precentor at St. John's to the 30th June 1860, after which he was prevented by Mr. Keene and Mr. Carmichael, two of the Elders, from performing his duties . . . [Mr. Crisp] contended that plaintiff, who was minister's clerk, was properly dismissed for misconduct. He then detailed the circumstances of the refusal of Mr. Fraser to allow Mr. Lowe to teach the children singing . . .

The duties of the Precentor were here explained by the witness [Rev. John Storie, officiating minister], to be present on all occasions of public worship at the direction of the minister, to sing the Psalms, to lead the congregation in the vocal part of worship, to publish banns of marriage, in requests for public prayer, he makes the intimation from the clerk's desk, and occasionally he is employed to act as Session clerk . . .

Mr. James Reid, an Elder of St. John's Church, deposed that on the Wednesday evening in question plaintiff and witness went to the school room, where Lowe had some of his own school children from Sandy Bay and half-a-dozen little children of the Sunday-school, and Fraser objected to their singing ranting Methodist tunes (a laugh), and said he would go out till the service began. Mr. Keene, who was there, said they should come and sing if "all the devils in hell opposed it" (a laugh) . . . By the Jury - The Precentor is a leader of the psalmody: we have at St. Andrew's, what I consider the same thing, the organist. If that person were to offend Mr. Storie, he could have no voice in dismissing him; that is a matter for the managers who are appointed by the congregation . . .

After an hour's deliberation the jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff, damages, £8 6s. 8d. Jury- Messrs. E. Allen, R. Ballantyne, G. Cherry, and S. Clifford.


Bagpiper, violin, flute, concertina, and accordion player, stockman

Born Port Arthur, VDL (TAS), 1845
Died Mansfield, VIC, 17 April 1934 (NLA persistent identifier)


Bagpiper, pipe major


Summary (from Gillison):

The Frasers were all musical and Simon played the violin, flute, concertina, accordion and bagpipes. His mother, who claimed descent from the MacCrimmons, traditionally hereditary pipers to the clan MacLeod, taught him the piobaireachd (pibroch) vocables, secretly handed down by word of mouth and by lilting from mother to eldest son. These vocables are known as "canntaireachd". He was also taught the secret language of the pipers in which by inserting extra notes a warning could be given. About 1816 Simon's father had written down the canntaireachd direct from Iain Dubh MacCrimmon and these he handed on to his son. When an appeal came from folklorists in Scotland, seeking lost piobaireachd vocables, Simon Fraser sent tunes; many of these letters and manuscripts are now in the National Library of Scotland, Edinburgh . . . He learned the craft of making stock-whips from Nangus Jack, an Aboriginal stockman whose whips were treasured by pioneer stockmen . . . On 25 November 1872 at Mount Battery station, Mansfield, he married Florence (Flora) MacMillan, a skilled Scottish dancer. With five of their eight children Fraser formed a band, touring Victoria and once playing on request at Government House. Two daughters played clarinet and piccolo; three sons, piano, second violin and harp; Simon played first violin. His son Hugh was a champion piper of Australia and, taught by his father, also made excellent stock-whips; both men declared that plaiting kept their fingers supple for fingering the pipes.


"THE HIGHLAND PIPE AND ITS MUSIC (by Simon Fraser, Warrnambool)", The Colac Herald (23 September 1910), 6

"THE HIGHLAND PIPE AND ITS MUSIC. (by Simon Fraser)", The Colac Herald (16 December 1910), 4 

"MANSFIELD", The Argus (18 April 1934), 10 

At a meeting of the Mansfield Jockey Club it was decided to abandon the race meeting this season - Mr Simon Fraser a past champion piper of Australia who at one time held the world's championship for whip plaiting and who presented a whip to the present King when he visited Australia as Duke of York died in the Mansfield hospital aged 81 years. He was the father of Pipe Major Hugh Fraser.

Bibliography and resources:

Joan Gillison, "Fraser, Simon Alexander (1845-1934)", Australian dictionary of biography 8 (1981) 

Orme 1985

Orme 2003a

Orme 2003b

Orme 2006

Mackenzie 2009

[156] [Simon Fraser] himself did not play the pipes seriously until he was 40 [1884-5]. He said he was then the only pupil of Peter Bruce, son of the great piper Alexander Bruce, who had been taught by both Gesto and Donald Ruadh MacCrimmon. Peter left his pipes to Simon in his will, an indication of a close teacher-pupil bond.

Mackenzie 2012


Pupil, c.1884-85, of Peter Bruce

FRAYLING, George Park

Violoncellist (pupil of the celebrated John Boatwright)

Born ? 1851/2
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 3 September 1879 (per John Duthie, from London via Deal, 22 May)
Died Horsham, VIC, 18 July 1933, aged 81


"ARRIVALS", Australian Town and Country Journal (6 September 1879), 36

[News], The Brisbane Courier (19 September 1879), 2

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (8 May 1880), 1

"Mdlle. Olga Duboin's Concert. TO THE EDITOR", The Brisbane Courier (13 May 1880), 3

"POPULAR CONCERT AT PORT ADELAIDE", South Australian Register (22 August 1882), 5

"THE ORCHESTRA", The Argus (2 August 1888), 5s

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 May 1889), 2

[Advertisement], The Horsham Times (13 December 1898), 3

"DEATH", The Horsham Times (21 July 1933), 4

"OBITUARY", The Horsham Times (21 July 1933), 4 


Centennial Exhibition Orchestra (player); Marshall-Hall Orchestra (player); Horsham Working Men's College (professor of music)

FRAZER, Walter (Mr. Walter FRAZER)


Active Melbourne, VIC, 1854


[Advertisement], The Argus (28 April 1854), 8 

MECHANICS' INSTITUTE . . . Miss Octavia Hamilton has the honor to announce that her First Benefit Concert in this colony will take place this evening,
Friday, April 28th, 1854.
For which occasion all the available talent in the colony had been secured, including the following distinguished artistes -
Mrs. Testar, Mrs. George Cox, Miss Octavia Hamilton, Mr. Walter Frazer, Mons Fleury, Signor Maffei, Herr Moritz.
Part I.
Glee - Blow Gentle Gales, Miss Hamilton, Mrs. Cox, and Mr. Frazer - Bishop . . .
Duet - What Fairy like Music? Miss Hamilton and Mr. Frazer - De Pinna . . .
Song - What is the Spell? Mr. Walter Frazer - Rooke . . .
Part II.
Trio - Sleep, Gentle Lady, Miss Hamilton, Mrs. Cox and Mr. Frazer - Bishop . . .
Song - Mr. Walter Frazer . . .


Musician, cornet player, bandmaster

Active Sydney, NSW, 1859
Died Lambing Flat, Burrangong, NSW, January 1861


In July 1859, Fredericks played cornet (with Kohler and Prince) in the orchestra for Lavenu's Sydney University Musical Festival, and at Charles Packer's orchestral union concert in November. In May 1860, Fredericks (listed as bandmaster, aged 31, native of Hanover) and five colleagues (including Conrad Appel) worked was a ship's band for some or all of a voyage on board the Malta between Suez and Sydney. He died at Lambing Flat in January 1861, perhaps having witness the beginnings of the troubles that would lead to the famous anti-Chinese riots in June. "A valuable lot of music and musical instruments . . . the effects . . . of the well-known musician, Mr. Christian Fredericks", was offered at auction in Sydney in September-October.


[Advertisement], Empire (4 July 1859), 6

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (24 November 1859), 1

"LAMBING FLAT ("From our Correspondent"), Empire (28 January 1861), 5

. . .This is emphatically a "poor man's diggings". Great finds are not spoken of, nor expected . . .Diarrhoea has been very prevalent, owing principally to the badness of the water . . . On Sunday, a deceased musician, who is said to have been well known, and distinguished in the orchestras of Sydney, Christian Fredericks, was buried. Several members of the order of Odd Fellows followed, wearing the regalia of their order. The band of which deceased had been the leader, played selections from oratorios during the passage to the grave, the lowering of the coffin, and the filling of the grave. The burial service was read by Dr. Temple, who, by his urbanity, gentlemanly deportment, and reputation for medical skill is winning golden opinions for himself.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (28 September 1861), 9

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 October 1861), 6

Bibliography and resources:


Singing instructor (Tonic Solfa Singing Class; Victorian Tonic Sol-fa Association)

Active Melbourne, VIC, by 1875
Died Melbourne, VIC, March 1943


"MELBOURNE HEBREW SCHOOL", The Argus (1 February 1875), 6

"MR. FREDMAN'S CONCERT", Williamstown Chronicle (8 December 1883), 3

"RECENT MEETING", The Argus (19 December 1887), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (15 February 1890), 16

"DEATHS", The Argus (6 March 1943), 13

Bibliography and resources:

R. M. Fredman, "Joel Fredman", Australian Jewish Historical Society Journal of Proceedings 8 (1979), 345-362



Active Sydney, NSW, 1880


"NEW MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 February 1880), 6

"A SONG BY THE LATE PETER POSSUM", Illustrated Sydney News (21 February 1880), 9

Musical work:

Before the flowers (words: "Peter Possum"; "sung by Mr. Vernon Reid") (Sydney: W. H. Paling & Co., [1880])

FREYCINET, Louis-Claude Desaulses de

Indigenous culture and music reporter

Born Montélimar, Drôme, France, 7 August 1779
In Australia (1) 1801-03; (2) Port Jackson, Sydney, 19 November-26 December 1819 (on L'Uranie)
Died 18 August 1842 (NLA persistent identifier)


See various citations in: 


Violinist, viola (tenor) player (theatrical orchestra), teacher, convict

Born Germany, c.1797
Arrived Port Macquarie, 1838 (convict per Bengal Merchant)
Active Sydney, NSW, by 1845
Died Sydney, NSW, 1869, aged 72 (BDM NSW 1044/1869) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


A music teacher before his conviction in London, aged 40 on 23 October 1837, for stealing watches, William Friedlander was transported to NSW for 7 years, and was sent to Port Macquarie. He received a ticket of leave in August 1842, and in mid-1845 was listed as a viola player at Sydney theatre for the winter season. He was still active in July 1859, when he played in the orchestra for the University Music Festival. He taught violin at Lyndhurst College for Anselm Henry Curtis.


"WILLIAM FRIEDLANDER, Theft, simple larceny, 23rd October 1837", Old Bailey Online

2441. WILLIAM FRIEDLANDER was indicted for stealing, on the 31st of July, 3 watches, value 9l., the goods of Bernard Lawley . . . GUILTY. Aged 40. Transported for Seven Years. Before Mr. Sergeant Arabin.

Convict record (transcribed Levi 2013, 251)

Dark sallow complexion; dark hair with grey, brown eyes; lame right leg; lower front teeth irregular. Roman nose. Friedlander had a counting house in Lime Street and took three watches as samples from a watch manufacturer. He then pawned them and could not redeem them. On a previous occasion he had given the manufacturer a forged bill. He was sentenced on 25 October 1837 for the theft of the watches, but was acquitted of the second charge of passing forged notes.

[Tickets of leave], Australasian Chronicle (25 August 1842), 4

[Unclaimed letters], Australasian Chronicle (7 January 1843), 4

"ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 April 1845), 2

[Advertisement], Morning Chronicle (28 May 1845), 3

[Advertisement], The Australian (29 November 1845), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 December 1845), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (20 June 1846), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 July 1846), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (5 December 1846), 1

[Advertisement], Bell's Life in Sydney (24 March 1849), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (2 April 1850), 1

[Advertisement], Empire (2 July 1859), 3

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (29 December 1868), 8

COMPLIMENTARY BENEFIT TO MR. FRIEDLANDER. As a token of respect to this gentleman, a Committee, composed of the principal English, French, and German residents of this city, have determined to devote the proceeds of a MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT for his special benefit. It is not alone that Mr. Friedlander is now the oldest musician in Sydney, he has attained to a ripe old age, and is, doubtless, on that account worthy of public support; but this appeal on his behalf is now made, not only in recognition of his long and meritorious services, but because, also, unfortunate events have deprived him of his former means of maintenance. The Committee, therefore, beg to solicit the patronage of the public generally on behalf of this well-known honourable and greatly respected citizen. All available artists, vocal and instrumental, will generously give their assistance. The Concert will take place on THURSDAY, January 7th, 1869, at the School of Arts, and an attractive programme will be duly announced.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 January 1869), 8

"MUSIC AND DRAMA", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 January 1869), 3

On the 7th instant a benefit concert was given to Mr. Friedlander, an aged violinist, who has for many years occupied the position of tutor in this city.

Waugh's Australian almanac for the year 1860 (Sydney: Ames William Waugh, 1860), 187

"FRIEDLANDER V. ATKINS", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 December 1869), 7

Bibliography and resources:

Levi 2013, These are the names, 251-52

FRITZSCHE, Gotthard Daniel

Amateur musician, church musician, Lutheran pastor

Born Liebenwerda, Saxony, Germany, 20 June 1797
Arrived Adelaide, SA, 1842 (per Skjold, from Hamburg)
Died Lobethal (Tweedvale), SA, 22 October 1863 (NLA persistent identifier)

Summary (ADB):

. . . [Fritzsche] was distinguished above all for his devotion to the cause of education. He encouraged the pioneer settlements to support schools and build churches. At Lobethal he started in 1842 the first Lutheran theological seminary in Australia. Himself an excellent musician, he encouraged music in his congregations.


"WOODSIDE", The South Australian Advertiser (4 November 1863), 3

Bibliography and resources:

"TOWNS, PEOPLE, AND THINGS WE OUGHT TO KNOW", Chronicle (12 October 1933), 46 

D. Van Abbè, "Fritzsche, Gotthard Daniel (1797-1863)", Australian dictionary of biography 2 (1967)

FROST, Caroline Coleman (Caroline Coleman ELLIOTT; Mrs. FROST; Mrs. John Thorp FROST)

School teacher, teacher of music and dancing

Born ? Liverpool, England, c. 1813
Married John Thorp FROST (d. 1859), Christ Church, Sydney, 14 August 1846
Active Sydney, NSW, 1850s
Died Surry Hills, NSW, 6 March 1873, aged 60 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"MARRIED", The Sydney Morning Herald (15 August 1846), 3 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 July 1851), 1 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (3 April 1854), 5 

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (6 July 1854), 1 

EDUCATION, SURREY HILLS - Mrs. FROST receives a limited number of pupils, to whom the result of much observation and practical experience enabled her to impart the various branches of a sound, useful, and accomplished education in accordinco with the system prevailing at the best schools in England. Mrs. FROST continues to give private tuition in music, dancing, &c. 33, Botany street, South Head Road, opposite the Court House.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (30 July 1859), 10 

FRYER, James Robertson

Bass vocalist, violinist (Hobart Town Philharmonic Society, Hobart Town Glee Club Concerts)

Active Hobart, TAS, by January 1852
Died Hobart, TAS, 5 February 1897, in his 72nd year


[Advertisement], The Courier (31 October 1853), 3

"MECHANICS' INSTITUTE . . . GRAND MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT", Colonial Times (5 November 1853), 2

"THE CONCERT", Launceston Examiner (31 May 1860), 3

[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Daily (1 June 1860), 3

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (7 July 1860), 2

"TOWN TALK AND TABLE CHAT", The Cornwall Chronicle (1 August 1860), 4

"DEATHS", The Mercury (20 February 1897), 2s

FULHAM, Mr. (? Robert FULLAM)

Non-appearing vocalist

? Arriveed Hobart Town, VDL (TAS), 27 June 1833 (free per Strathfieldsay)


A Robert Fullam (Fulham), a shoemaker, from Dublin, and his wife Jane, arrived in Hobart Town by the Strathfieldsay on 27 June 1833. The couple appeared at least once before the Hobart bench for being drunk and disorderly. Robert having predeceased her (described as "late of Sydney"), Jane died in Melbourne in 1873; in 1878 their daughter, Charlotte, married Leopold Collin.

Fullam was perhaps related the the veteran Dublin actor and vocalist Michael Fullam (1758-1826); alternatively, he may have been unrelated, and simply feign a connection with the actor.


Arrivals; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:423107 and -8; CUS30/1/1 P239

[News], The Hobart Town Chronicle (2 July 1833), 2 

List of tradesmen by the Strathfieldsay: - . . . Shoemakers - William Fulton, J. O'brien, Robert Fullam, Thomas Kendrick, William Tallon . . .

[News], The Tasmanian (26 July 1833), 5 

[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Courier (26 July 1833), 3

MR. DEANE AND MRS. DAVIS'S FOURTH CONCERT, Assisted by MESSRS. REICHENBERG, RUSSELL, PECK, AND FULHAM, (Late of the Theatre Royal Dublin), WILL take place on Monday evening next, July the 29th, at the Court house, Hobart town.

Part First.
Overture, "Tancredi," - Rossini.
Glee, "Chorus of Huntsmen in Der Freischutz," Weber.
Cavatina, "Una Voce poco fa," - Mrs. Davis - Rossini.
Solo - piano forte, "Fall of Paris, with variations," - Miss Deane - Moschelles.
Song, "He was famed for deeds of arms," - Mr. Fulham - Corri.
Solo. - Violin, in which will be introduced some of the peculiaritie of that Celebrated performer Paganini - Mr. Peck - C. De Beriot.
Duett, "My pretty page," - Mrs Henson and Master Deane - R. H. Bishop [sic].
Song, "Alice Gray," - Miss Barron, a pupil of Mrs. Davis's, only 10 years of age - Hodson.
Glee, "Hark! Apollo strikes the Lyre," - H. R. Bishop.
Part Second . . .

"The Fourth Concert of Mr. Deane and Mrs. Davis . . .", Colonial Times (30 July 1833), 2 

. . . The audience was disappointed that Mr. Fulham did not appear. Every body was enquiring after Mr. Fulham - who and what was he? so that when Mr. Deane stepped forward and said, that Mr. Fulham was indisposed, it put us in mind of the old story, so often told, of Mrs. Dickon's coach breaking down. Mrs. Davis kindly volunteered to sing Mr. Fulham's song, "He was famed for deeds of arms," and we think it was her best performance . . .

"The Concert at the Court House . . .", The Tasmanian (2 August 1833), 6 

. . . Mr. Fulham, "of the Theatre Royal, Dublin," did not appear according to announcement: he was ill, we learnt, from a bad cold; and we regretted his absence, as we were led to expect great amusement from his abilities . . .

[News], The Colonist and Van Diemen's Land Commercial and Agricultural Advertiser (29 October 1833), 2 

The sign board of a humble Crispin residing in Melville-street, presents the following ludicrous inscription: - "R. FULHAM, fancy shoemaker to Her Excellency!" What next?

"DEATHS", The Argus (4 December 1873), 1 

"MARRIAGES", Bendigo Advertiser (23 January 1878), 3 

Music concordance:

"He was famed for deeds of arms . . ." = The trumpet sounds a victory, composed by D. Corri, sung by Mr. Braham in the opera of The travellers (New York: W. Dubois, [1817]) 


"LEAVES FROM THE PORTFOLIO OF A MANAGER", The Melbourne Daily News (13 September 1851), 4 

. . . When I first came to Dublin, under the management of Mr. William Abbott, in 1824, Fullam had declined deep in the value of years. He must have been nearly, if not quite, eighty . . .

FULLARD, James Henry

Musical instrument maker, convict

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 3 August 1833 (per Waterloo)
Active Parramatta, NSW, 1844 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Fullard, a 25-year-old musical instrument maker from Dublin, was convicted in the Nottingham Assizes on 10 March 1832 for stealing from his employer, and sentenced to 14 years. He arrived in Sydney on the Waterloo on 3 August 1833, and in 1837 was assigned to the music seller Francis Ellard, also originally from Dublin. He was awarded a ticket-of-leave in 1838, but was before the courts again in Parramatta in 1845 for reselling a cornopean he had been engaged to repair. His ticket (apparently issued at Maitland) was cancelled, and he was back in Maitland in 1846.


"PARRAMATTA. POLICE OFFICE", The Australian (28 December 1844), 3

A case of embezzlement, which has occupied the Court off and on for the last fortnight was brought to a close by a committal. Although the evidence is long, the gist of the matter lies in a very small compass. A man named Fullerd (a ticket-of-leave holder for this district, and, who was by trade a musical instrument maker, but not disdaining to turn his hand to anything in watches,) had received from one person a gold watch to regulate; from one of the 58th's Band a cornopean to take a dirge out of; from a second man of the same corps a silver watch to put to rights; and from a fourth person, (a music master), a flute to put some stops on. The watches he made "to go" - the gold one to the room of a Sydney auctioneer, and the silver one to a similar receiving depot in Parramatta, where also the flute was "stopped;" the cornopean being still not forthcoming; whilst the three other articles were produced by their respective baillees, who candidly confessed that they had bought them from the prisoner with the understanding that he was to purchase them back at a certain time, with certain considerations, to the price given. These considerations appear to vary materially in the latitudes of Sydney and Parramatta; in the former the consideration for £1 10s. for a month is 3s., whilst in the latter it is 3s. 6d. for £1 for the same period. The prisoner said nothing in his defence.

"Parramatta. WATCHES WERE MADE TO GO!", The Star and Working Man's Guardian (28 December 1844), 2 

It is a singular fact that Walton's (the bellman) watch, for making away with which, is one of the charges on which Fullard is Committed for trial, was some time since stolen from him, and a man sentenced, last Quarter Sessions, to three years in irons for the theft.

"PARRAMATTA. POLICE OFFICE", The Australian (13 February 1845), 4

"TICKETS-OF-LEAVE CANCELLED", The Sydney Morning Herald (3 March 1845), 4

"LAW INTELLIGENCE", The Sydney Morning Herald (10 April 1845), 2

. . . James Henry Fullard, prisoner of the Crown, under sentence at Cockatoo Island, was next placed in the witness-box: he deposed that he had received the cornopean from Flannaghan [sic], and subsequently the case - (the instrument and case now produced), and had subsequently sold them to Mr. Cohen for 50s . . . he had known Mr. Cohen eight or nine years; when he first knew him, witness was himself assigned servant to Mr. Ellard, musical instrument seller; Mr. Cohen knew that he was a musical instrument maker, and that he kept a shop in Parramatta . . .

[Advertisement], The Maitland Mercury (21 November 1846), 1

"A HINT TO THE MAITLAND POLICE", Bell's Life in Sydney (16 January 1847), 2

It may be in the recollection of our readers that a watch was lately stolen from the public-house of Mr. Oram, known as the Settler's Arms, Castlereagh-street, on the night of the 20th ult. by a lodger, whose name and occupation were not specified in the paragraph alluded to. At the request of the owner of the watch, and for the information of the Maitland Police, we beg to subjoin a detailed report of the occurrence. On Monday the 28th December, a man of gentlemanly exterior and address, named Fullard, a piano-forte tuner by profession, and a resident of Maitland, put up at the "Settler's Arms." He paid for all he had the first night, and requested to be shown a bed-room. In this he was accomodated, and there he slept, the landlord nothing doubting his ability or inclination to pay for all he so magnificently ordered. He remained there on the following day and night, "issuing his sublime commands," much in the air of a German Prince, and being served accordingly. On the following day he offered Mr. Oram, who is an expert musician, a flute, an elegant one of ebony, mounted with silver, and keys of the same metal, for sale, deficient only in the loss of the penultimate joint: this he said he had left with a musical-instrument maker, to have the key adjusted. Mr. Oram consented to be the purchaser, provided he supplied the missing joint, without which the instrument was, of course, perfectly useless. Having gone out for that purpose, he never returned; and it is supposed that he has found his way back to Maitland, where we hope the conservatives of the peace will have a sharp look out for him. He has a "pearl" in his eye - one of great price no doubt, and cannot easily escape detection, if he is the real thief. - However, the watch, which hung upon the mantle piece, disapperaed with the ---- C operator, Mr. Fullard, and the owner is particularly anxious to know the "time o'day" by his own time-keeper - verbum sat.

Bibliography and resources:

James Henry Fullerd . . . transported on the Waterloo, 11 March 1833; Convict Records

FULLER, Alfred

Organ builder

Born Kelvedon, near Colchester, England, 2 October 1845
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, May 1871 (per Oxford)
Died Moonee Ponds, VIC, 10 June 1923, in his 78th year


"VICTORIA. XI. MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS", The Argus (23 December 1880), 58s

[Advertisement], The Argus (2 April 1881), 12

"NEW CHURCH ORGAN", Bendigo Advertiser (8 November 1882), 3

"ST. PAUL'S CHURCH ORGAN", Bendigo Advertiser (23 April 1883), 2

"SUMMARY OF EVENTS", Illustrated Australian News (8 November 1884), 162

"DESCRIPTION OF THE ORGAN", Oakleigh Leader (18 March 1893), 4

[Advertisement], The West Australian (24 May 1897), 1

"WILLS AND BEQUESTS", The Argus (20 June 1903), 14

Bibliography and resources:

Graeme Rushworth, "Alfred Fuller, Melbourne 19th century organ builder - his life and work", a paper delivered at the O.H.T.A. 5th Annual Conference, Melbourne, 28 August, 1982

FUNK, Herr

Clarionet player

Active Melbourne, VIC, 1855


[Advertisement], The Argus (19 February 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (24 April 1855), 8

[Advertisement], The Argus (25 April 1855), 8

FURLEY, James (James Lettall FURLEY)

Organist, composer, arranger

Born Finsbury, England, 3 February 1832; baptised St. Leonard's, Shoreditch, 18 March 1832 (son of Philip Charles and Sophia FURLEY)
Arrived Sydney, NSW, 1860
Died Cronulla, Sydney, NSW, 27 October 1912, "aged 81"


Baptisms solemnized in the Parish of St. Leonard's Shoreditch in the County of Middlesex in the Year 1832

[Page 155] no. 1235 / James / Philip Charles and Sophia / Furley / Long Alley / Gold Beater / [born] 3 Feby. 1832

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (31 May 1860), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (17 December 1860), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (12 June 1861), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (26 August 1861), 1

[Advertisement]: "JUST PUBLISHED", The Sydney Morning Herald (29 March 1862), 12

"MUSIC", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 April 1862), 4

"BIRTHS", Empire (25 August 1862), 1

"ST. ANDREW'S ORGAN", Empire (13 August 1867), 4

"ST. JOHN'S, BISHOPTHORPE", The Sydney Morning Herald (9 March 1868), 4

"NEW MUSIC", Empire (13 September 1870), 2

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 October 1912), 8

"DEATH OF MR. JAMES FURLEY. VETERAN ORGANIST", The Daily Telegraph (28 October 1912), 10 

Mr. James Furley, died yesterday morning at "Summerlees," Nicholson-parade, Cronulla. He was taken ill about two months ago, and was then compelled to relinquish his position as organist and choirmaster of St. Silas', Waterloo, which he had held for 20 years. Mr. Furley had the honor of taking part in "The Cathedral Organ performances" in St. Andrew's, on Saturday, August 10, 1865. The word "recital" was not then used. The performances commenced at 3 in the afternoon. There were three organists - Messrs. John Hill, Edwin Cobley, and James Furley. The late Mr. Furley remembered the days of "the parson and the clerk." He studied under the late Dr. Gauntlet [sic] and Anthony Le Jeune, organist of St. Mary's R.C. Cathedral, Moorefield, London. He arrived in this city in I860, and a week after his arrival was appointed organist and choirmaster of St. James' Church Sydney, which position he held for 15 years. At that time only the Psalms (metrical) at the end of the Prayer Book were used, there being no hymns sung save the morning and evening hymns. (The first hymnal used in Sydney was known as Chope's Hymnal.) The choir of St. James's at that period was considered to be very efficient, and rendered the oratorio of "The Messiah" at a concert, also introduced many new services by Dr. Arnold, Dr. King, Bridgewater, Jackson, and others. Mr. Furley acted as organist at the laying of the foundation-stone of St. John's, Glebe, and afterwards for a period became organist of that church. During the visit of the Duke of Edinburgh in 1868 the old gentleman conducted the singing of the children of Mount Carmel R.C., St. Silas's Church of England, and Wesley Church. Mr. Furley had also been organist of St. Johns, Parramatta; St. John's, Balmain; and St. Matthew's, Manly. Mr. Furley, who was in his 82nd year, was a native of Finsbury, London, and the only son of the late Philip Furley, of Ashford-street, Hoxton. He leaves a widow, one son, and five daughters. The interment will lake place this afternoon in the Church of England portion of the Woronora Cemetery, Sutherland.

"MUSICAL AND DRAMATIC", The West Australian (9 November 1912), 9

The death is announced in Sydney of Mr. James Furley, the veteran organist of St. Silas's Church of England, Waterloo. The late Mr. Furley came to Sydney about 50 years ago, and when the Duke of Edinburgh visited that city in 1868 was appointed to conduct the singing by the children of the united churches. He was for some years organist of St. James's, Sydney.

Musical works:

Christmas Hymn: Star of the east ([by the] "Organist of St. James"; "first time in Sydney") (December 1860)

Nunc dimittis (by Mr. James Furley, organist and choir master, St. James' Church, Sydney) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1862]) 

The pilgrims of the night (sacred song written by F. Faber; for four voices with accompaniment of the organ or harmonium arranged by James Furley, Organist of St. James Church) (Sydney: J. R. Clarke, [1870])

Bibliography and resources:

Rushworth 1988, 367-68

FURLONG, William Romauld (W. R. FURLONG)

Bass vocalist, choral conductor, composer

Born 1844 (son of William FURLONG and Mary Josephine GREEN)
Active Melbourne, VIC, by November 1868
Died Melbourne, VIC, 1931, aged 87 (NLA persistent identifier)


[News], The Argus (20 April 1869), 5

[Advertisement], The Argus (15 July 1869), 8

[News], The Argus (21 December 1872), 5

"THE TOWN HALL. NATIONAL CONCERT", The Argus (18 March 1878), 7

"ST. PATRICK'S CATHEDRAL", The Argus (24 October 1887), 9

Musical works:"W.+R.+Furlong" 

Bibliography and resources:

The State Library of Victoria holds a large collection of music, both printed and MS (25 items associated with the choir of St. Francis's Church), belonging to W. R. Furlong, donated by the Furlong family.

FURRIAN, Henry (Henry Harding FURRIAN)

Actor, vocalist (with the Wiseman Family)

Born 1831; baptised St. John, Hampstead, Camden, 20 July 1831
Active VIC, 1857-61; Sydney, NSW, 1886 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


In 1841, Furrian was living, as a singing boy, with William Hawes (1785-1801), master of the choristers of the Chapel Royal and St. Paul's Cathedral, London. In Australia he appeared in 1858 with Linly Norman's opera company, and later with, among others, Fanny Wiseman (1846-1933) and her sister Emily (1844-1881).


Baptisms solemnized in the Parish of St. John Hampstead . . . in the year 1831; register 1813-40, page 81

[1831] July 20 / No. 644 / Henry Harding / George & Maria / Furrian / Hampstead labourer / Bricklayer

1841 England census; Middlesex, St. Martin in the Fields, Charring Cross, District 19, pages 6-7

Adelaide Terrace / William Hawes / 55 / Musician . . .
Maria [Hawes] / 20 / Musician
John [Hawes] / 20 / Music seller . . .
George [Mulliner] / 12 / Singing Boy
[page 7] Marcellus Higgs / 14 / Singing Boy
William Lyon / 14 / [Singing Boy]
Theodore Genge / 13 / [Singing Boy]
George Woodhatch / 11 / [Singing Boy]
Edgar Ray / 12 / [Singing Boy]
William Rivett / 10 / [Singing Boy]
William Miller / 11 / [Singing Boy]
Henry Furrian / 10 / [Singing Boy]


. . . The Hallelujah Chorus was then chanted by the full choir, snd in a style which filled every listener with admiration and delight. The royal procession then departed iv the same order in which they had entered the choir. We must not omit to mention that the Amens in the Service were given so softly and sweetly by the full choir as to produce the very finest effect. The vocal department, which combined the strength of the Chapel Royal and St. James's, consisted of the following gentlemen: - W. Knyvett, J. B. Sale, T. Vaughan, R. Clark, T. Welsh, E. Hawkins, J. Hobbs, O. Bradbury, T. Francis, J. Bennett, F. Horncastle, J. Roberts, H. Wylde, E. Chapman, and W. Hawes; with the following boys from the Chapel Royal: - Masters W. C. Lyon, H. Deane, T. Genge, G. Mullineux, G. Woodhatch, E. Ray, W. Rivett, W. Miller, H. Furrian, T. Baker; with the vicars of St. George - Messrs. Salmon, Turner, Palmer, Smith, Harris, Coveney, French, West; and choristers, Messrs. R. Boden, J. Brion, J. Forster, H. Manners, H. Schroeder, H. Therham, A. Winterbottom, F. Menten, W. Stapleton, J. Hawkins. The instrumental band, which was accommodated in the organ gallery, consisted of Violins. - Leader, Mr. Cramer, Master of the Household band ; Messrs. Anderson, T. Cooke, Loder, Blagrove, W. Cramer, Wagstaff, and Loder, Jun. Violas. - Messrs. Moralt and Calkin. Violoncello. - Mr. Lucas. Trumpets. - Messrs. Harper and Irwin. Trombone. - Messrs. Smithie. Dr. Elvey presided at the organ . . .

[Advertisement], The Argus (4 March 1857), 8 

DUDLEY'S ASSEMBLY ROOM, North Williamstown. - A Series of Three GRAND CONCERTS will be given as above, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, the 5th, 6th, and 7th inst, under tne patronage of Captain Pascoe, R. N., P. M. Artistes - Mesdames Annie Vitelli and Mrs. McDougal and Messrs Gregg, Norton, Furrian. Pianist, Mrs Mackie; Conductor, Mr. Vitelli. Admission, front seats, 3s.; back, 2s.

"THE NEWS OF THE DAY", The Age (2 March 1858), 4 

Mr. Wallace, of the Star at Beechworth, has engaged an operatic company, and the theatre adjoining the hotel has been refitted for their performances. The company comprises Miss Julia Harland, Mrs. Hancock, Mrs. Williamson, Miss Williamson, Mr. Farqaharson, Mr. Sherwin, Mr. Hancock, Mr. Hoskins, Mr. Furrian, &c., &c. Already the "Bohemian Girl," "Lucia di Lammermoor," "Norma," and other operas, have been performed with decided success; and we understand that "Maritana" and other operas are in preparation.

"THE STAR THEATRE", Ovens and Murray Advertiser (11 March 1858), 2 

The entertainment provided last evening at the Star was an entire change upon previous performances. Dibdin's Opera, "The Waterman" formed the leading piece, and from the mannar in which it was got through afforded general satisfaction. Miss Harland was in better voice than we have yet heard her, and in "Sound the Pibroch" was deservedly encored. In this song Miss Harland's powers are heard with more effective beauty than in anything she has attempted on the Beechworth stage, and although it is not any part of the piece itself, but introduced only as an extraneous ornament, it is in itself a sufficient excuse for any one to pay a visit to the Star. Mrs. Williamson as Mrs. Bundle was also most successful in eliciting well merited applause, and Mr. Furrian far surpassed expectation. With a little care this gentleman will take a high position in light comedy, which is evidently his forte. His song to Wilhelmina was cleverly rendered, and we were glad Mr. Furrian's efforts were rewarded with an encore . . .

"MUNICIPAL POLICE COURT. WAGES", Bendigo Advertiser (15 September 1858), 3 

Henry Furrian summoned Charles Henry Rignold for L.3 2s. 6d., wages alleged to be due. The evidence for and against was of such a contradictory character, and on both sides was stamped with such a want of veracity, that the Bench summarily dimissed the case.

Playbill, Lamplough, VIC, Theatre Royal, 12 November 1859 

Theatre Royal, Scandinavian Crescent . . . Saturday November 12, 1859 the performances will commence with the far-famed musical drama The miller and his men! . . .

Playbill, Lamplough, VIC, Royal Garrick Theatre, 7 January 1860 

This evening, Saturday, January 7 [1860] the performance will commence with the beautiful and thrilling drama of intense interest, entitled The poachers, or, Love and revenge! . . . Burlesque song, Mr. Furrian . . .

"ABBOTT'S LYCEUM", Bendigo Advertiser (7 September 1860), 2 

"THE THEATRE", Mount Alexander Mail (7 January 1861), 3 

? [Advertisement], South Wales Daily News (9 September 1872), 1

GOOD HANDWRITING. SMART'S SYSTEM TAUGHT by Mr. H. FURRIAN, who will guarantee a Beautiful Handwriting in eight Lessons. Proficiency in Bookkeeping, &c. Academy Open Daily. 12, St. John-street, Cardiff.

[Advertisement], Globe (2 February 1886), 1 

FUSSELL, James Coldham (J. C. FUSSELL; James FUSSELL)

Music publisher, newspaper proprietor and publisher, bookseller

Born Owslebury, Hampshire, England, 25 March 1810
Arrived Melbourne, VIC, 29 May 1853 (passenger per Marco Polo, from Liverpool, 14 March)
Active Sydney, NSW, by 1858, as music publisher, from c.1861
Died Sydney, NSW, 19 January 1876, aged 65 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


"INSOLVENCY COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (12 May 1859), 3

"DEATHS", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 January 1876), 1

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (1 February 1876), 2

"Old Chum", "OLD SYDNEY. No. 256", Truth (15 September 1912), 12 

James Fussell, an old book agent, died on the 19th [January 1876], aged 65 years. Mr. Fussell was of Crabbe Hall, Owlsbury, Hants, born in March, 1810 [recte 1820], and sailed for Melbourne, in 1853, in the Marco Polo, Captain Forbes (the same who ran the Schomberg at the Barwon Heads a couple of years afterwards). His family followed in 1854. Mr. Fussell came from a good Hampshire family, one of his ancestors being organist to the historic Winchester Cathedral.

Extant musical publications: (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Fussell published the series "Australian musical bouquet", in 1861-62, earlier variously published by George Peck and Alonzo Grocott (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Bibliography and resources:

Neidorf 1999, 171

© Graeme Skinner 2014 - 2020