The loss of the Northfleet, 1873

Fetch-2473I wrote most of this piece six months ago but got side-tracked (as usual!) before I’d finished tying up loose ends.  Then, quite by chance, two things happened within a week: I had an email from a descendant of Caroline Holton; and I came across a newspaper cutting (The Bucks Herald of 1st March 1873), reporting on the inquest into another of the people who drowned.

 

[The account of the wreck comes from the Maritime Moments website, to whom I am greatly indebted.]

Some years ago I contributed notes and annotations to a book entitled “From Tingewick to Tioga” – the last few copies still available by emailing author Jan Anderson on janeandrs ‘at’ gmail.com.  It was based on an account of the Holton family, written in 1917 by Joseph T. Holton whose father had emigrated from Tingewick to Pennsylvania in 1851.  One of his notes said:

“My aunt, Caroline Holton was born 1826 and she married John _________ and they had children born unto them and they was drownded in the North Sea in 1873 and one child was safe in a boat and was adopted by people near Dover, but they say it died.  But they say that they left two girls and they married two brothers named Day and that they went to London, but they have not heard.”

Caroline had, in fact, married John Taplin in October 1848 at Tingewick.  He was probably working on the railway line, which was built across the northern edge of the parish around 1847. They had six daughters in the next twelve years.  The second was baptised in Tingewick but died in infancy: the two youngest were twins, born in 1862.

The family was constantly on the move: Welling in Hertfordshire in 1849; Whatlington in Sussex in 1851; Dudley, Worcestershire in 1854; Tiveydale in Staffordshire in 1859; Bakewell in Derbyshire in 1861; Rosebury in Derbyshire in 1862; and  Finsbury in London in 1871.  By 1873, perhaps the boom in railway work in England had ended.  John signed up to work on the Tasmanian Railroad, and – with his wife and three youngest daughters – boarded the Northfleet in London.  On board were 379 people (including the crew and the pilot), 340 tons of iron rails, and 240 tons of other equipment, bound for Hobart in Tasmania.  At 11 am on January 13 1873, she slipped down the river from London.

The late January weather was stormy and more than a week later they had only reached Dungeness, where they spent the night of the 22nd at anchor, in company with perhaps 300 other boats waiting for the weather to lift.  Sometime after midnight, disaster struck – a steamer ran into them, striking them hard on the starboard side.  Without identifying herself, the steamer backed away and vanished into the night.

For whatever reason, only two of the seven lifeboats were launched.  Perhaps there wasn’t time (from the inquest I just found, ‘the lashings were too tight’) – within 30 minutes, the boat had sunk.  In spite of the captain’s best efforts (including, apparently, shooting a man in the knee who disobeyed his orders), only two women, one child and one baby were saved.  The rest of the 86 survivors were all men, including 11 of the crew.  So much for women and children first!  In all, 293 lives were lost: 41 were women; 43 were children; and 7 were babies under 1 year old.

The one child that was saved was Maria Taplin.  It seems they were soon picked up by a steam tug, the City of London, and taken to the Seaman’s Mission in Dover.  The captain’s wife – now widowed – offered to take Maria to London: the newspapers printed her story, and offers to adopt her poured in.  Some versions say she went to live with her older sisters, now married: but the death registered in Dover in the third quarter of 1879 of a 17-year old Maria Taplin is probably hers.

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Deaths of Henry William Judd 1891-1924 and Mrs N. B. Judd d. 1936

[spotted by Sue Dudley]

OBITUARY. (1924, March 24). The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 – 1954), p. 6.
Retrieved August 17, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article23724633

screen-capture-9OBITUARY.
MR. H. W. JUDD
It is with very great regret that we
announce the death, which occurred with
unexpected suddenness last evening, of
Mr. Henry William Judd, an esteemed
member of “The Mercury” literary staff.
He was a highly capable journalist, and,
by reason of his genial disposition, had
endeared himself to a wide circle of
friends in every part of the State.
Coming to Tasmania from England ,
thirty odd years ago, deceased began his
career in Hobart as a reporter on the
“Tasmanian News,” on which paper his
ability and never-failing courtesy earned
for him marked popularity with all with
whom he came in contact. Later he
transferred to the Hobart staff of “The
Mercury,” where, during his whole
period of sevice, he was held in the
highest esteem by both the management
and his fellow colleagues. After being
located in the head office tor some years
he was appointed manager of the Zee-
han branch of “The Mercury” office, and
later still manager of the branch at
Launceston., At both centres he took a
keen interest in mining, and was recog-
nised as an authority on the subject. A
little over two years ago Mr. Judd re-
turned to Habart, and made his home at
Douglas-street, New Town, where his
demise took place in such tragic circum- |
stances last evening. Speaking to a mem-
bers of the staff yesterday afternoon
concerning his trip to Beaconsfield,
from which place he hud returned only
the previous evening, after representing
“The Mercury” at the annual show, de-
ceased appeared to be in the best of
health. When at home later in the even-
ing, however, it would appear that he
was seized with a fit of coughing, dur-
ing which he expired.
Deceased, who was fifty-nine years of
age, leaves a widow and two daughters,
one of whom is married, and one son,
Mr. J. Judd.

Deceased, in addition to being a most
capable journalist, showed ability as a
photographer, his Illustrated .’Guide to
the West Coast,” which he first publish-
ed several years ago, being a production
of outstanding merit. In his youth he
played cricket with the old Wellington
Club, and met with a good deal of sic-
sess, particularly as a bowler. His main
hobby was gardening.


Funeral of Hr H.W. Judd

THE LATE MR. H. W. JUDD.
THE FUNERAL.
The funeral of the late Mr H W. Judd,
of “The Mercury” Literary Staff, took
place yesterday afternoon, the remains
being interred at Cornelian Bay ceme-
tery There was a large and represen-
tative gathering, old comrades of the
deceased from all parts of the State at-
tending to pay their last tribute.
Amongst those gathered at the grave-
side were Messrs E A Counsel,, ISO
(representing the Minister for Lands),
\V A Pretyman (Secretary for Mines,
representing the Minister for Mines),
J K Reid (Clerk of the House of As-
sembly, who represented the Speaker,
Hon. J. W. Evans, C M G ), C D Chep-
mell (Clerk of the Legislativo Council),
G Crosby Gilmore (Police Magistrate),
D O’Keefe M.H.R., Selby Wilson, Luke
Williams, J Earle, Hon E Mulcahy, and
Colonel R Eccles Snowden, M. H. A. All
departments of “The Mercury” were
represented, those present including
Messrs C. R. Davies (chairman of direc-
tors) C. B. Davies (a director), W.H.
Cummins (General Manager), W H Sim-
monds (Editor), and L Broinowski (As-
sociate Editor). The “World” staff, of
which Mr J. Judd, deceased’s son, is a
member, was also strongly represented,
the editor (Mr. J. M. Mackay) being in-
cluded in their number. Mr G. Hogarth
( Daily Telegraph,” Launceston), and Mr
S. Blackburn (‘ Examiner,” Launceston),
also represented the Launceston
sub-branch of the Australian Journalists’
Association The Tasmanian district of
[photo] THE LATE MR. H. W. JUDD.
the A.J.A. of which the late Mr Judd
had recently been president and on
the executive of which he represented
Ihe Launceston sub-branch at the time
of his death, was represented
by the president (Mr J Chap-
man), secretary (Mr A. O’Brien),
and members of the committee. The
pall bearers were Messrs C. R. Davies,
W HI Cummins, J M Mackay, and M
O’Brien The chief mourners comprised
Messrs J Judd (son), E Judd (brother),
and T R Lee (son in law) Numerous
beautiful floral tributes were placed on
the grave, including tokens fiom the
following. -Proprietors of ‘The Mer-
cury ‘ and ‘ Illustrated Tasmanian Mail,”
General Manager of “The Mercury” and
“Illustrated Tasmanian Mail” (Mr W
H Cummins), and Mrs Cummins, “The
Mercury” Literary Staff, Premier and
State Ministers, Hobart Regatta Associa-
tion, Tasmanian District AJA, “Exami
ner” Literary Staff, editor of ‘The Mer-
cury,” editor of the “Illustrated Tas-
manian Mail,” ind Launceston sub-dis
tact AJA. The services at the house
and graveside were conducted by the
Rev J H Wills (Anglican), who at the
graveside paid a tribute to the deceased’s
many fine qualities. Mr Judd had, he
said, led a life that was upright and hon-
ourable and his work had been heartily
and thoroughly performed He had done
his duty in a manner which all should
try to emulate He had been honoured
and esteemed The funeral arrange-
ments were carried out by Messrs Clark
Bros


LATE MR. H. W. JUDD. (1924, March 25). The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 – 1954), p. 6.

Retrieved August 23, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article23724908

The Premier's Tribute

LATE MR. H. W. JUDD.
THE PREMIER’S TRIBUTE.
The Premier (Hon J A Lyons) stated
yesterday that it was his desire on be-
half of the Government and himself
to give expression to their sympathy
with the relatives of the late Mr H.
W. Judd of “The Mercury” staff whose
painfully sudden death occurred on Sun-
day night He said that, with other
Ministers he had had ample oppor-
tunity of seeing the late Mr Judd’s
work from time to time and of coming
into close touch with bim official!y
They had always received the greatest
courtesy from him. His duties had
always been carried out in a gentlemanly
and capable manner He wanted
particularly to say that neither Minis-
ters nor members had had cause to com-
plain that any of Mr Judd’s reports of
speeches in the House of elsewhere had
ever been inaccurate 0r unfair. General-
ly, they regretted his loss very much
Mr D D Griffin writes -As ne
who had the privilege and pleasure –
and it was a pleasure-of intimate ac-
quaintance with the genial Mr. Judd, I
was grieved to hear of his sudden de-
mise, so entirely unexpected by his
numerous friends in the North-West and
on the West Coast as well as elsewhere
Apart from his marked ability as a
journalist, he had a most affable, always
the same disposition. Few men took
more interest in mining or were better
versed in its prospects than Mr Judd.
Only recently I had a chat with him
anent prospects of a genuine mining re-
vival and the prospect there was of
opening up what we both hoped may
prove i great mining field in this State.
And now, alas, he has suddenly gone
out into the unknown across the Great
Divide. ____________


OBITUARY MRS. N. B. JUDD. (1936, June 8). The Mercury(Hobart, Tas. : 1860 – 1954), p. 6.
Retrieved August 17, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article25207766

 

OBITUARYscreen-capture-8

MRS. N. B. JUDD 

Journalistic Associations

Funeral at Cornelian Bay
Mrs. Nona Belairs Judd, wife to the
late Mr: Henry William Judd, and
mother of the late Mr. Jack Judd, died
at her home, Tingewick, Douglas Street,
New Town, on Friday. Mr. H. W. Judd
and Mr. J. Judd, were well-known Tas
manian journalists, and each, at the
time of his death, was a member of the
literary staff of “The Mercury.” Mr. H.
W. Judd was at one time manager of
the Northern office of “The Mercury.”
The late Mrs. Judd is survived by two
daughters, Mrs..T. R. Lee, of Ivanhoe,
Victoria, and Mrs. H. C. Tanner, of
Ranelaghlagh, Tasmania.
The funeral took place yesterday at
Cornelian Bay cemetery, and the chief
mourners were Messrs. J. Tibballs
(brother), T. Lee and H. C. Tanner
(sons-in-law), C A. Bennetto, A. Ben-
netto and H. Bennetto (nephews).
Among those at the graveside, where
a service was conducted by Canon C.
W. Wilson, were the Lord Mayor (Mr.
J. J . Wignall), Aldermen W. J. Rennie
and W. W. Osborne, the managing
editor of “The Mercury” (Mr. F..Usher),
the chief of staff of “The Mercury”
Mr. C. G. Patman) and the deputy
chief of staff’ (Mr. A. G. Bradley), the
president of’ the Australian Journal-
ists’ Association, Tasmania district (Mr.
R. W. Brooks), Col. R. A. Rafferty,
Messrs. W. L. Grace and J. Lonergan,
Clark Bros. were the funeral direc-
tors.