Henry Edward John Dench
Henry Dench was born in 1826 in
the suburb around the
East and West India Docks in London.
parents were Henry Dench, a dock keeper, and Cecelia Dench nee
Dench Cicely 1791 Middlesex Poplar, Poplar
Dench Henry 1781 Middlesex Poplar, Poplar
Dench Frederick 1816 Middlesex Poplar, Poplar
Dench Amelia 1821 Middlesex Poplar, Poplar
Dench Sidney 1821 Middlesex Poplar, Poplar
Dench Emely 1829 Middlesex Poplar, Poplar
Dench Henry 1826 Middlesex Poplar, Poplar
Dench Emily 1828 Poplar Shoreditch, Holywell & Moorfields
Dench Amelia 1818 Poplar Shoreditch, Holywell & Moorfields
Poplar High Street, South Side part 2 - Dolphin Lane, Poplar, London
1871 census - No. 60 Frederick H Dench, Currier & Leather Warehouse
Numbering from Post Office Directory in 1869 from 32 to 68 Poplar High Street & Dolphin Lane intersection
... here is Dingle Lane ... No. 60 Dench Fdk Hen, currier & leather seller
Surnames from Poplar
Henry Dench arrived 1851 in Canterbury, New Zealand. He did not arrive on the Travancore, that was another Edward Dench. In early 1852, Henry went to Victoria for gold and Henrietta Bennett followed him to Melbourne. They were married in 1852 at St Peters Church, Melbourne. "Harry" Henry E. J. Dench married Henrietta Amelia BENNETT in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1852. Victoria Early Church Records, Book 4, No 2960 1852. 1NZ Birth registration 1853 Dench, Henry Frederick Father: Henry. No mother listed. 1858 Dench, Henry Edward Father: Henry. No mother listed. 1863 Dench, Frank Charles 1866 Dench, Rose Lillian 1873 Dench, Charles Edward
Following children of Henry and Henrietta from the Victoria Pioneers Index 1837-1888 Emily Frances Dench born 1854 Sandhurst Dench (male) born 1856 Sandhurst Dench born 1856 Sandhurst Amelia Sarah Dench born 1857 Sandhurst Frances Celia Dench died 1857 1yr old Sandhurst
Henrietta Bennett, b.16 March 1834 Bromley, Kent, England (outer borough of London) to John and Frances (nee Freeman) Bennett. She was one of eight children including a brother, Charles Bennett b. 4 Feb. 1838, and a sister, Ellen. Ellen Eliza Bennett b. 23 July 1828, Bromley, arrived at Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on the "Isabella Hercus" January 4, 1856. I have not been able to find how Henrietta Bennett arrived in Otago or Henry Dench in Lyttelton in 1851. Usually the earlier an immigrant arrived in NZ the easier it is to locate the name of their arrival vessel. It took me years to prove family oral history that William Palmer and Ellen Bennett met on board the Isabella Hercus and a couple of months later married in Christchurch. Ellen's name was on the passenger list but not William's. Turns out William worked his way out as a steward. We found William Palmer's discharge certificate, certificate of character, as well as Ellen Bennett's passenger contract at the Canterbury Museum in Christchurch. Maybe Henry Dench came out as a crewman!!!
Jan. 1853. NY. We have advices from Auckland, New-Zealand, by way of London, to Sept. 14. The attractions of the Victoria gold fields were beginning to be felt in an extended degree, many of the small storekeepers and tradesmen being about to sail to Australia.
Miner's Rights Number Name Date Location Province Country 3572 Henry DENCH 27 Sept 1861 Tuapeka Otago New Zealand
Again arrived in Lyttelton but in 1862. Settled Port Chalmers. Appears in the Port Chalmers electorate from 1866. Henry Dench served the community with devotion as a member of the Port Chalmers Borough Council 1868-9, Mayor of Port Chalmers 1871-3, a Justice of the Peace and a publican. He established a restaurant later turned into the "Jerusalem Hotel" often known as "Dench's Hotel". He also owned the Chick's Hotel at 2 Mount St, Port Chalmers and the "Crescent" (now Careys Bay Hotel). Mount Street was at one time the business centre of Port Chalmers. He was a staunch member of the Church of England and organised the province-wide appeal which resulted in the erection of an English style church large enough to accommodate three-hundred people in 1874 probably on the half-acre corner of Scotia Street. Reference: Port Chalmers: Gateway to Otago by H. Bowman and a letter held by Otago Settlers Museum.
Unassisted Immigration to Victoria
Index of Inward Passenger Lists for British, Foreign and New Zealand Ports 1852-1923
from NZ on the Aeolus July 1854
Dench Henry Mr
Dench Henrietta Mrs
Dench Henrietta I
Hotels & Licensees 1861 - 1865 For Hotels in Inner
Jerusalem Coffee House - Mount St, Port Chalmers 1864 Dench, Henry
The Rothesay News - August 2000
Bricks and Mortar - by Lois Galer. An Otago Daily Times Publication pre 1996. Article Hotel of Notoriety and Intrigue
Harry was gifted a painting by Lieut. William Goldie, in 1870. Henry Frederick Dench, their son, born 1853 and died in 1935 in Melbourne. H.F. was secretary of the Pt. Chalmers' fire brigade between 1876 and 1880 when he had to call upon the services of the brigade to his burning house on May 3, 1880. Reference: Port Chalmers and its People by Ian Church.
Henry Dench died 23 May 1890 at Mansford Town, near Port Chalmers. His obituary appeared in the Evening Star 24 June 1890. W.H. Mansford arrived 1848 on the 'Victory' purchased land and established a store in the higher areas of what is now known Careys Bay formerly called Mansfords Bay.Port Chalmers Old Cemetery Row 4 Plot 47 H Dench: The headstone, a decorative white marble slab, on the family plot reads: In loving memory of Henry E.J. Dench died at Mansford Town 23 May 1890 aged 64 years. And his wife Henrietta Bennett died ?17 March 1886 aged 52 years; [7 Feb 1886] Emily Frances died 17 March 1855 aged 6 months; [6 Minutes] Frances Celia died 18 May 1857 aged 21 months; Frank Charles died 11 January 1864 aged 10 weeks; Edward Sidney died 21 Sept. 1868 aged 16 months; Amelia Sarah died at Auckland July 21 1901 aged 43 years. Charles Edward died at Cambridge, Auckland, 15 May 1902 aged 29 years. Peace perfect peace. Base: Rose L. Bentham 29 Sept. 1930 aged 65 years Charles R. Bentham 15 June 1933 aged 29 years. God is Love. Reference: "The Town Clerk" Port Chalmers, NZ Dunedin Cemetery DENCH HENRY E J Age: 64 Years Date of Death: 23 May 1890 Last Address: MANSFORD TOWN, PT CHALMERS, DN Funeral Director: Cole & Springer Cemetery: PT CHALMERS OLD Location: Block R4 Plot 0047 Date of Burial: 25 May 1890 DENCH HENRIETTA BENNETT Age: 52 Years Date of Death: 7 Feb 1886 Cemetery: PT CHALMERS OLD Location: Block R4 Plot 0047 Date of Burial: 9 Feb 1886 Occupation: Married DENCH CHARLES EDWARD Age: 29 Years Date of Death: 15 May 1902 Last Address: Cambridge Cemetery: PT CHALMERS OLD Location: Block R4 Plot 0047 Date of Burial: 25 May 1902 Place died: Cambridge
From burial register:
Dench, Henrietta wife of Henry
Died : 7 Feb 1886, aged 52 years of paralysis
Resident of : Mansfords Bay, Port Chalmers.
Born: Bromley, Kent, England.
Last came from: Wellington NZ
Lived: 35 years in Province.
Why did the children die? A lot of sadness for Mrs. Bennett. The family was attended by Dr. R. Urquhart from 24 April 1863. I am looking for any information on Henry E.J. Dench, his wife Henrietta Bennett and Captain John FAIRCHILD who commanded the government steamer 'Luna' and later the 'Tautanekai' and the 'Hinemoa' a government coastal trader. The 'Hinemoa' would berth at Port Chalmers on its lighthouse runs to deliver supplies. What is Dench family / Fairchild connection? Henrietta Bennett's niece Frances Henrietta Palmer arrived from Christchurch to help her at the hotel in the late 1870s. Frances's daughter was named Hinemoa after this vessel.
Henry Dench had a three-story hotel, with twenty-six guest rooms on the top floor, built of local volcanic basalt known as bluestone in a 'Romanesque' style about 1877 on the original Port Chalmers jail site so part of the gaol is included in the hotel's basement. In 1880, George Henry Chick became the owner and hotelkeeper. George Chick b.19 April 1847, Somerset, England came to Port Chalmers as a second steward on the ship Challenge in July 1869. He m. Ellen WARRY 23 Nov. 1871 Dunedin also from Somerset. He was drown at age forty-seven on the night of 29 Oct. 1894 along with his brother-in-law William Charles Warry, age 37, when the 1023 tons, Union Steam Ship Co. of NZ vessel, SS Wairarapa on the way from Sydney to Auckland wrecked at Great Barrier Island in thick fog with the loss of 135 lives. George had gone to England to find his brother-in-law and to bring him back to Port Chalmers. They never made it! No body was found so no death certificate was issued for them. His widow and family continued in the pub business until 1938. The building still stands with evidence where shackles had been removed and stories of men tipsy men being shanghaied. The Port Chalmers Museum, Beach St., Port Chalmers has the photograph of H.E.J. Dench and the Otago Museum has a photo of G. Chick.
Note: There was another Henry Dench who was the manager of the Bank of Otago, now BNZ at Mosgiel (about 1895), maybe related to Jack and Elsie Dench of Waimate, South Canterbury. I am interested in Elsie's family. Elsie's parents where William (Bill) ASHWORTH who wed Frances Louisa BRAY, daughter of Frances H. Palmer and James Bray. James Bray arrived on the 'Otaki' at Lyttelton on 8 February 1876. Frances H. Palmer was the daughter of Ellen Bennett and William Palmer.
New Zealand Spectator and Cook's Strait Guardian, 1 February 1854, Page 3
ARRIVALS. January 25-�Schooner Elizabeth, 8 tons, Warren, from Otaki.
Same day � Schooner Maria Elizabeth, 15 tons, Hood, from Queen Charlotte Sound. Passengers �Messrs. M'Donald, Walker, Heberley.
January 29� Barque Eliza, 150 tons, Walker, from Sydney. Passengers � Mrs. Walker, Mrs. Patterson Messrs. Beauchamp, Sutcliffe, S. Water. J. Williams.
January 30 �Scooner Scotia, 103 tons, Baitlett, from Melbourne.
January 26�Ship Camatic, 632 tons, Smart, for Madras. Passengers � Dr. and Mrs. Johnston, Capt. Chesney.
Same day � Schooner Mary Ann, 15 tons, Woodgate, for Wanganui.
January 28 � Schooner Salopian, 40 tons, Douglass, for Ahuriri. Passengers �Mr. and Mrs. Donaldson, Miss Cameron, Mrs. Collins.
January 30� Schooner Gipsy. 8 tons, Riley, for Wanganui.
Same day � Barque Belle Creole, 267 tons, Henton, for Melbourne. Passengers �Messrs. J. and S. Pilcher Mr. and Mrs. Harrington and three children, Mrs. Scott and four children, Mrs. Speedy and four-children, Mr. and Mrs. Dench, H. and J. Syraons, W. Clapham, S. Cleckett, D. Corkery, W. Henderson, H. Lezge, J. Delaine, J. Walker, B. Short, I. Plimmer, A. Heese, J. Onion, P. Corkery, Mary Connell.
Same day �Schooner General Palmer, 8 tons, for Rangitikei.
Wellington Independent, 12 November 1861, Page 2
NOTICE. TO JOHN ANDREW THOMPSON, AGENT FOR HENRY DENCH,
Or to whom it may Concern. I THE UNDERSIGNED Occupier of a portion of Section No. 40, Park Vale near Karori, as ; laid down in the New Zealand Company's Plan of I the Country Sections in the District of Wellington �do hereby give you notice that I require you to assist me in erecting the dividing fence between the land you hold in possession as Agent on the part of Henry Dench, and my land about twenty-eight chains more or less, also the dividing fence between Allotments Nos. 4 and 5 about three chains more or less, within thirty-one days after this date in conformity with the Act of the Provincial Council Session I. 1, No. 13, otherwise I shall proceed to erect the same and call upon you for payment of one half of the cost of erecting or making the whole of such dividing Fences. WILLIAM BARNES, Sen. 12th November, 1861
Evening Post, 23 July 1872, Page 2 PORT CHALMERS. 23rd July.
Dench was re-elected Mayor with a majority of 35 votes over his opponent M'Dermid.
Evening Post, 17 July 1873, Page 2 PORT CHALMERS. 16th July.
Mr Hugh McDermid, M.P.C., has been elected Mayor without opposition. Mr Dench, the retiring Maytor, intimated his intention of standing as councillor for the High Ward.
Evening Post, 2 August 1873, Page 2 PORT CHALMERS. 1st August.
The result of the municipal elections is as follows : � Mr M'Kinnon defeated Mr Dench, the ex-Mayor, by 16 votes for the High Ward.
Otago Witness, 15 November 1873, Page 20 POLICE COURT.
Mr Rolfe, J.P., and Captain Thomson, J.P., presided at the Police Court, Port Chalmers, on Thursday, and disposed of more than the usual amount of police business. Of the three cases tried. The second case called also had its moral, and the principal in it will doubtless think twice betore he again indulges in "larks" with other people's property. It arose out of the frolics of "Jack ashore," and all but ended in the carpenter of the ship Bebington being convicted of petty larceny. The police prosecuted, and according to the evidence adduced, it was shown that the carpenter and some acquaintances went into the Provincial Hotel on Saturday evening last, the party being more or less under the influence of liquor, and therefore inclined to be uproarious. Receiving a quiet hint from Host Dodson that, under the circumstances, their room would be more acceptable than their company, they "topped their booms and sailed large" for Dench's Hotel; but when leaving, the carpenter, espying an umbrella in the hall, picked it up '"for a lark," and carried it away under his coat. Off Dench's the little fleet fell in with a Queen's ship, in the shape of a policeman, who, noticing that each craft was rather "in the wind," and that one of them seemed to have something contraband of war on board, he boarded him, found the umbrella, and made a prize of both. The carpenter, foolish fellow, instead of plainly stating the facts of the case, spun a disjointed yarn, and was lodged in the lock-up for his pains. He was set at liberty next morning, but only to be rearrested when the owner of the umbrella turned up. The case was clear enough, but as the man received an excellent character from the chief officer of the Bebington, and the witnesses moreover avowed that " all was done in lark," the Bench dismissed him with a severe caution, for which he seemed truly grateful.
Otago Witness, 29 January 1876, Page 8 PORT CHALMERS.
With the probability of scarlet fever visitation staring it in the face, the Port Chalmers Corporation is bestirring itself to abate nuisances, of which there are one or two rather prominent in that, on the whole, clean and well-ordered town. One of these is an affair of long standing in connection with the Jerusalem Coffee House and a block of buildings on the upper side of it, and consists of a drain which has not or does not carry off refuse in a proper manner. This was the substance of a case brought against Mr Dench, the proprietor of the coffee house, by the Inspector of Nuisances, yesterday morning at the Police Court. Mr Dench admitted the drain to be a nuisance, but at the same time pleaded that he had used his utmost endeavours and incurred heavy expense time and again to abate it. Moreover, the nuisance was not all on his side � a great deal of it procacding from adjacent buildings belonging to Mr Brebner, the Inspector of Nuisances, and who, therefore, could scarcely be regarded as impartial in the matter. Mr Dench pointed out the bad condition of the locality generally, and said that as far as he was concerned, he was about to adopt measures that would, he believed, neutralise the evil complained of. His Worship replied that he would adjourn the case until Tuesday next, in order that impartial evidence might be adduced as to the responsibility of the property-holders of the locality in the question at issue.
Otago Witness, 5 January 1878, Page 8
MR DENCH'S NEW HOTEL AT PORT CHALMERS.
Of the improvements in the way of buildings effected lately in Port Chalmers, the new hotel lately erected by Mr Dench is one of the most conspicuous. It is a fine three-storey building of blue stone and brick, with a flat roof, which affords a promenade and a splendid view. The plan upon which it is built is somewhat unique, being one of Mr Dench's own conception. The cellar is one of the largest in the Colony, arid the winding stair-cases are models of ingenuity and good workmanship. The splendid family hotel erected by Mr Dench at Mansford Bay, about eight minutes' walk from the railway station, has been well patronised this season by families from Dunedin. It contains 22 rooms, the smallest of which is 13 x 13 feet, and all are furnished in the very best and most comfortable manner. From the large sitting room up stairs there is a fine view of the harbour ; there are bath-rooms for ladies and gentlemen, supplied with hot and cold, fresh and salt water, boats for the use of boarders, and gardens well stocked with fruit and flowers. The house is in charge of a lady who has had experience in the management of similar establishments, and who superintends every department ; and altogether there are probably few watering-place hotels in the Colonies which afford better accommodation.
8th Feb 1878 Hawkes Bay newspaper
Marriage DENCH-GIBSON Something rare, if not altogether new, in connubial alliances has taken place in Port Chalmers. The Otago Daily Times describes it as a "very interesting marriage." It took place at Holy Trinity Church, in the presence of a very large number of spectators, when Mr Henry F DENCH, J W of the Port Chalmers Marine Lodge, No 947, E C.., was united to Miss GIBSON, a daughter of a well known member of the Lodge. A dispensation from the R W D G M., permitting the brethren to appear in Masonic clothing had been obtained, and the W M with the officers and brethren of the Lodge, were present. On the arrival of the bridal party a wedding march was played by Bro. BOTT, organist of the church, and the bride, attended by ten bridesmaids (daughters of the W M and several P M's of the Lodge, including three of the bridegroom's sisters), moved up the aisle to the front of the altar, where the ceremony was very impressively performed by the Rev Lorenzo MOORE, incumbent of the church. After the marriage, the W M., Bro C De L GRAHAM, presented the bride, in the name of the Lodge, with a very elegant bouquet of white and blue flowers, the centre forming a square and compass, together with a silver hilder appropriately engraved.
Otago Witness, 28 January 1903, Page 44
DENCH � GIBSON.� On the 22nd January, 1878, at Holy Trinity Church, Port Chalmers, by the (late) Rev. Lorenzo Moore, M.A., Henry Frederick Dench, to Rebecca Jane, eldest daughter of (late) Daniel Gibson, Emerald Hill, Melbourne, Victoria. Present address : 39 Clive road, Auburn, Victoria. [South Melbourne was first known as Emerald Hill, because the hill on which the town hall now stands was a green island surrounded by swamps.]
Grey River Argus, 5 April 1878, Page 2
Port Chalmers, April 4. The seat for Port Chalmers, vacated by the Hon. Mr Reynolds, is likely to be keenly contested. Joyce declines standing. H. Dench, ex-Mayor, consented, and his supporters are enthusiastic as to his return.
Evening Post, 13 April 1878, Page 2
12th April. The election has been keenly contested. The returns give Green 269, Dench 179. One booth has yet to send in returns. The result of the contest is all in favor of Green. The official declaration of the poll will be made on Tuesday.
Southland Times, 2 September 1878, Page 2
Henry Dench, Port- Chalmers, hotelkeeper.� Debts L1583 2s, assets L450.
Otago Witness, 28 September 1878, Page 8 IS A LICENSE A "CHATTEL"?
At the Supreme Court in Bankruptcy, on Monday, a case of some interest to hotel-keepers was heard. It was RE HENRY DENCH, an application for an order for the sale of the goods and license of the Crescent Hotel, Port Chalmers, for the benefit of the creditors' trustees. Mr Kettle appeared in support of the application, and called several witnesses to show that after the alleged sale of the property there was no apparent alteration in regard to its ownership, beyond the fact that Mackley went to the hotel on the occasion of the conveyance being made. W. G. Neill, of Neill and Boyd, deposed that in a conversation with Dench shortly after his bankruptcy, the bankrupt said he had sold the Crescent Hotel, at Mansford Bay, to Mackley conditionally, and that he could get the place back whenever he wished. 14th. Mr Dench told me that the Bank was pressing him. I took possession after the conveyance was signed. The inventory of furniture and the conveyance are in the hands of the National Bank at Port Chalmers. His Honor could not see that the evidence supported that position, and declined to make the order applied for. Order refused.
West Coast Times, 15 January 1879, Page 2
SHIPPING. Port Chalmers, January 13.
Sailed � Glenn for Timaru ;
Wakatipu for Sydney, Lyttelton and Wellington. Passengers� for Lyttelton: Mesdames Ferguson, M'Call, Dench and Seager, Mr and Mrs Knox, Messrs Hunter, Brassey and Ching. For Wellington : Mesdames Haggitt and Berwick, Mr aud Mrs Jollieff Fergusson and three children, Miss Fergusson, Prof, Sale, Messrs Johnstone, Ferrier, Morrison, Cutten, M.H.R., Thompson, M'Kellar and Ah Kong. For Sydney : Mr Caldwell and two Chinese.
Otago Witness, 18 January 1879, Page 10
Holy Trinity, Port Chalmers
The following gentlemen were elected as vestrymen :� Messrs J. R. Monson, F. G. Downes, H. Dench, D. Rolfe, Sutherland, C. de Longueville Graham, G. Chick, Nicholls, E. Wignall, and R. Ritchie, sen.
Grey River Argus, 3 May 1880, Page 2
A fire on the premises of H. F. Dench, Port Chalmers, on Saturday morning, totally destroyed the building and furniture, the inmates having had a narrow escape. Insurances � L200 on the furniture and L200 on the building, in the Union Office. The loss is estimated at L150. The holder of a mortgage on the property had another insurance of L600 in the New Zealand.
Otago Witness, 9 April 1881, Page 14
Arawata, s.s., 623 tons, Sinclair, from Melbourne, via Hobart and the Bluff. J Mills, agent. Passengers � Mr and Mrs Murran, Mr and Mrs R Lee, Mr and Sirs Donaldson, Mesdames W Elder, H Dench, jun,.
Tuapeka Times, 24 June 1882, Page 3
Among the insolvents to-day are H. Dench of Palmerston, debts �324 assets, �30
Timaru Herald, 6 July 1885, Page 2
Port of Timaru, Arrived
July 4� Wanaka, s.s., 228 tons, Russell, from Dunedin. Passengers � Mesdames Nantes and Velvin, blisses Hsskoll, Doig, Dench and Welsh, Messrs Fraser, Robin, A. and J. Burt, Stnmbles, Volvin, Master Cramond, and two in the steerage.
Otago Witness, 13 February 1886, Page 17
Dench � On the 7th February, at her residence, The Cottage, Mansford Town, Port Chalmers, Henrietta, the beloved wife of Mr Henry Dench ; __ years.
Otago Witness, 20 May 1887, Page 21 Birth
Dench.� On the 29th April, at the Federal Bank of Australia, South Melbourne, the wife of Henry Frederick Dench, of a son.
Otago Witness, 22 August 1889, Page 21
Dench.� On the 4th August, at Tooronga road, Hawthorne, Melbourne, the wife of Henry Frederick Dench, of a son.
Evening Post, 12 June 1890, Page 2 Death
DENCH- On the 23rd May, at his residence. Mansford's Bay, Port Chalmers, after a long illness, Henry E. J. Dench, i his 65th year; deeply regretted.
Evening Post, 12 June 1890, Page 2 Death
DENCH -On the 23rd May, at his residence. Mansford's Bay, Port Chalmers, after a long illness, Henry E. J. Dench, in his 65th year ; deeply regretted.
North Otago Times, 25 February 1891, Page 2
The following Otago candidates have passed the teachers' examination : Violet Dench.
Otago Witness, 26 May 1892, Page 25
Dench.� In loving memory of our dear father and mother, who died at Mansford Town, Port Chalmers, 23rd May 1890 and 7th February 1886.
North Otago Times, 24 February 1893, Page 3
TEACHERS' EXAMINATIONS. Wellington, February 22.
The following are the results of the teachers' examinations for the Otago district : Passed Class D. � Violet Eliza Martha Dench.
Otago Witness, 25 August 1898, Page 33
BENTHAM � DENCH. On the 16th August, at St. Michael's Church, Durham street, Christchurch, by the Rev. F. Mayne, M.A . Robinson Bentham, of Roslyn, Dunedin, to Rose Dench, of Port Chalmers.
Otago Witness, 24 July 1901, Page 49
DENCH.� On the 21st July, at "Tiri," Grafton road, Auckland, Amelia S. Dench, late of the "Poplars," Mansford Town. Deeply regretted.
Otago Witness, 21 May 1902, Page 43
DENCH � On the 15th May, at Cambridge, Auckland, Charles Edward, youngest son of the late Henry Dench, Port Chalmers, in his twenty-ninth year.
No more of Australia! My arms are too old;
And my back is too stiff to go digging for gold.
Yet old as I am, and though wealth I may crave,
My heart is too young to enlist for a slave;
Let youth in its heat be adventurous still,
And scramble for nuggets as fast as it will,
I'll cling to my friendships, my home, and my health,
And live upon little, and think it is wealth.
I've always had bread in the land of my birth,
And a shilling to spend for my need or my mirth;
And gold, though 'tis good, as I'll never deny,
Is rather too dear if with life we must buy.
So give me a crust in my own native land,
And I'll breathe its dear air while I'm able to stand,
And wish all the diggers, whoever they be,
To be joyous as I, with a spirit as free.
And yet, fortune speed them! the young and the bold!
There's virtue in daring, there's glory in gold;
The greater the portion who wander away,
The better for those who've determined to stay;
While rocking their cradles, far off and forlorn,
They'll cradle an Empire - a giant new-born.
Success to their labours, wherever they roam,
And long may the nuggets come glittering home.
P.B., August, 1852
Poem courtesy of Tony Dalton from his GGGPa's Scrapbook.
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