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James Albert Gegg (1850 - 1915)
Page 2

These pages about Jimmy are split as follows :

Page 1 : Bits & Pieces
Page 2 : Involvement with education
Page 3 : Newspaper extracts
Page 4 : More newspaper extracts
Page 5 : Newspaper reports of the negligently branding trial

James Gegg

James A Gegg took quite a deal of interest in educational matters during his adult life. This interest spanned his time at Windellama when his children were young (c.1873 onward) as well as after he moved into Goulburn in 1903 when his children had all grown up and left home (c.1905). Shown below are various pieces of correspondence relating to school matters that were found at Windellama school with the assistance of Peter, the school principal in 1993.

Application for Half-Time School

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James A Gegg Application

Application for the Establishment of Half-time Schools
at Windellama West and Windellama East
Post Town Windellama

Date : 13th of September 1879
We beg to apply to the Council of Education for the establishment of Half-time schools at Windellama West and Windellama East (About 5 words illegible) Regulations of 8th March, 1869.

We have the honour to be,


Your most obedient servant,

(Various Signatures)

Windellama West Local Committees

Windellama East Local Board (Including J A Gegg Secretary)




The Application for establishment of Half-time Schools and the Annex to application for aid to a provisional school combined were the whole application as forwarded to the department

Annex to Application for Aid to a Provisional School

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James A Gegg Annex

Annex to Application for Aid to a Provisional School


We the undersigned parents (or Guardians) of children residing within the undermentioned distance from the site of the proposed Provisional School at Windellama hereby undertake that our Children, whose names are inserted below, shall attend the said School.

Name of Parent or Guardian
(To be written by himself) : J A Gegg
Distance from School : 1
Name of Child : A H J Gegg and S M Tickner
Age : 6 and 4
Religious Denomination : Protestant

Based on this application, it appears that J A and Elizabeth Gegg were raising Elizabeth's younger sister (Sarah Marie Tickner). Their mother, Martha Rideout, died in 1875. This application was made in 1879. Her father didn't die until 1895. It was not an unusual practice for others to raise a young child after the mother died even if the father was still alive

Letter 22 March 1880

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James A Gegg 22 Mar 1880

Windellama East Half time School
March 22nd / 80

In reply to your letter of the 16 ultimo with reference to the materials that i have in my Possession that were used in the late Rosevale School at Windellama.
I shall be most happy to comply with your request in handing them over to a teacher whenever he may be appointed

I remain
yours Truly
James A Gegg
Local Board
Windellama East

The Council of Education

Letter 31 January 1881

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James A Gegg 31 Jan 1881

31.1.   1

Dear Sir
Being informed that Mr W Calthorpe Teacher of the East and West Windellama Half time Schools is to be removed from the above Schools i have according to the wishes of the inhabitants have taken the liberty of writing to you to ask you kindly to Allow him to remain Teacher of the above Schools for another term as all the Parents and Guardians of the Pupils attending the above Schools are highly satisfied with the manner in which Mr Calthorpe has got the children on the short time he has been here and he is well respected and i have not herd (sic) the least complaint about him and he bears an unblemished character. So hoping you will be able to grant the request            I remain
Dear Sir
yours Truly
James A Gegg
i enclose a Petition signed by the Parents & Guardians of the Pupils of the above Schools
(Copy of petition not available)

Letter 8 March 1884

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James A Gegg 8 Mar 1884

Windellama March 8th / 84

To the Minister for Public Instruction
I take the liberty of writing to you to ask you if you Could allow us any aid with regard to learning the female children to sewing & et (sic) as there is a good many girls at our East & West Half time Schools it seems a great loss to them that there is no one to teach them. I have spoken to our Teacher's Wife Mrs W Calthorpe and she is both Capable and willing to undertake the duty if the needful recompense is granted.
So entrusting you will see the need and grant the required aid
I remain Dear Sir
yours respectfully
James A Gegg

It is not clear whether the request was granted as there are conflicting recommendations. There does seem to be more negative recommendations than positive ones.

The "Junction Store" Letterhead

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James A Gegg 'The Store' Letterhead

All four pages of this letter were written on J A's shop letterhead "Junction Store, Windellama". It's not known when he introduced the letterhead to the shop

Letter 21 March 1903

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James A Gegg 21 Mar 1903 Page 1 James A Gegg 21 Mar 1903 Page 2 James A Gegg 21 Mar 1903 Page 3 James A Gegg 21 Mar 1903 Page 4
Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4

Re Mr Inspector Flashman, Inquiry Provisional School Windellama
The Under Secretary
Dept of Public Instruction
Dear Sir
I understand the outcome of the above Inquiry, is that the teacher, Mr H I Coleman has been severely censured, and is to be removed to another school, in the near future.                                             Not that I have any desire to, in any way interfere with the working of your department, but I do certainly feel it my duty as one concerned in this very Important Matter, to make known to you some facts, that in my opinion should not be lost sight of, before you take any extreme steps in this particular case.
1st On the removal of Mr Gunnell (our previous Teacher), and before Mr Coleman had been on duty many days, one of the parties, who has most certainly taken the leading part in lodging and working up these complaints that has been under your notice and the subject of the Inquiry refered (sic) to, although her name is not on the Petition, asked me what the Department meant by taking away their Teacher (Mr Gunnell) and sending them a boy in his stead. Thus a Prejudice was formed and has been worked up and enlarged upon, by the parties complaining up to the date of the Inquiry, and in fact up to the present.
2nd The most of the Parties complaining are of a very Indiferent (sic) and Illiterate Class of people, who, I am very sorry to say, set examples to their children when at home such as most certainly does not correspond with the duty of their Teacher, and the wishes and meanings of the Department of Public Instruction.                                   For instance I have one of the Parents in my employ and his oldest son is sent to my place with a message to his Father, who he Inquires for from Mrs Gegg, saying is Jack about. Mrs Gegg being at a loss to know his meaning he was asked again who he meant, and the reply was Jack Bill, meaning his Father, This sort of Home Teaching together with bad Language and all sorts of encouragement, to work against theirTeacher, makes the duty of a Teacher very hard indeed, and in my opinion the only reason open for him, is to appeal to his superior officers in the department for fair play and reasonable Protection.
I take it for granted during the last few days, the Department, has made it known to those complaining, their Intention to remove the Teacher, Mr Coleman, as once they make it their business, to write on slips of Paper (one of which I have in my possession) and distribute them along the Road with the following words written thereon , Good News Coleman has to leave Windellama. I mention this to show their good haste and manner they have, in conducting their Business
I have been connected with school matters here for over twenty years, being one of the Old School Board, & I have had more or less to do with School matters from then up to the present, & claim to know what is needed and a true belief in fair play, both to the Teacher & the Pupils.
Personally I am quite satisfied with the conduct and perserverance of the Teacher, in the performance of his duty and am quite certain he does not exceed his duty when inflicting Punishment on his Pupils.                                            Before any extreme measures are imposed on Mr Coleman by the Dept, I sincerely ask that he will be given every chance to explain his side of the question. After which I feel certain he will receive every consideration which in my opinion he is worthy of, before removing him from his present position. Should you require any further information, I am quite willing to furnish you with same.
Thanking you in anticipation
Yours Sincerely
James A Gegg

In spite of the above Coleman was removed. It is interesting to note that in Windellama School's Centenerary booklet (presumably from other sources in the school's records) it was noted that Mr Coleman was at this time engaged to be married to one of J A's daughters. Which one is not known as in the longer term none of his daughters married a Coleman. Interesting that he didn't provide any indication of this relationship in the above letter. This letter was written only three months before J A and his family permanently left Windellama to reside in North Goulburn. Would he have been so outspoken if he wasn't leaving?

Property Map

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Map showing location of farm

This is a map of the Windellama district showing the location of the Gegg shop and property on the Braidwood Rd, Southwest of the Windellama Rd, on the corner of the road leading up to property of J Sweeny.

It is believed that the map was drawn up c.1882 by the Dept of Public Instruction in relation to an application for a school at Windellama to replace the two half-schools at Windellama East and Windellama West. It is notated on the map that the distance between the two schools is about 4-1/2 miles - most of the road being wet and swampy.

Also noted in a pupil synopsis with the map is that Mr Gegg's children are 1 mile from their current school (Windellama East) and that he has 4 children between 4 and 14 years attending (The names are not indicated but they were probably Albert, Charles and Martha Gegg plus Elizabeth's sister Sarah Tickner who they were raising).


Updated : 30 Jul 2015