Letters & journals

The following links are to transcripts of significant letters, journals and diariess of emigration to Victoria and Ballarat or life on the Victorian goldfields. If you would like to contribute an article or have a page which you would like linked in this section please email the Website Administrator.

Henry TOWNSEND - 1825 Voyage on The York
In June 1825 Henry took a position as Captain's Clerk on The York and in this letter describes conditions on board, names some crew and passengers and vessels he encounters. Also described are a stand off with pirates, the brutality in some graphic detail of the crew on crossing the Line; the Australian Company; dissatisfaction of crew and passengers; the slave trade and his first sight and taste of a banana. The York was a vessel bound from Gravesend to New South Wales via Rio De Janeiro. Compiled by Dione Coumbe, Kent, England.

James DUGMORE (1834-1903) - Memoir of his life and travels in Victoria
The journal begins with a description of mia mias near La Trobe's cottage and tells of the formation of Melbourne in the very early days.

In the Days when the world was wide
A narrative of the Pioneering Experiences of Patrick Costello 1841-1856

Hugh GRAY - 1852 letter from Geelong
A staunch Glasgow liberal has just received a long letter from the Antipodes from a well-known Glaswegian of the same school, the leading features of which we have been requested to publish. He writes from Geelong, on arrival, and says I will now give you my experience since our arrival.

Thomas LYLE - 1852 voyage to Australia
The story of Thomas LYLE, his wife Sarah COUMBE, daughter Anne 13, sons William 11 and Henry 9, and their voyage to Melbourne, Victoria, Australia in 1852. Compiled by Dione Coumbe, Kent, England.

Rev Theophilus TAYLOR - 1853-1856 journals
Rev Theophilus TAYLOR (1829-1859), a Wesleyan Minister in Ballarat over the Eureka period left a valuable record of his journey to Australia and life in Ballarat and Creswick, in which he makes observations on incidents in the Eureka Rebellion.

James FERGUSON - 1854 letter from McIvor
Transcript of an 1854 letter from James Douglas FERGUSON about the goldfields of McIvor, Victoria to his parents in Northumberland, England and a letter (1878) from his daughter, Esther with a Heathcote address.

James SNEDDON & Maria McGEE - 1854 voyage to South Australia
The emigration of James SNEDDEN, his wife Maria McGEE and infant daughter Mary from Glasgow to South Australia in 1854, followed by gold mining in Vic and NSW. Article by Annie Stuart.

P H BRAIN - 1855 letter from Alma
Transcript of an 1855 letter from P H BRAIN on the Alma Goldfield near Maryborough, Victoria to his friend George WORLOCK back in Gloucestershire, England. The letter contains candid observations of life on the diggings in 1855.

James DAVIES - 1855 letter from Ballarat
Transcript of an 1855 letter from James DAVIES about the trip from Wales to Ballarat in 1855. Also, a letter (undated) from his son, James about the trip from Geelong to Ballarat and a few events in his early life on the diggings.

James LETCHER - 1857 journal to Ballarat
Transcript of the journal of James LETCHER from Cornwall to Ballarat in 1857. His two younger brothers, John and William, had already preceded him to Ballarat.

MORMEROD - STEWARD Family Letters.
Transcripts of letters from the ORMEROD - STEWARD Family Letters

Michael GUINANE - 1867 letter from Ballarat, 1881, 1882 letters from Williamstown.
Transcripts of letters from Michael GUINANE in Ballarat and Williamstown regarding gold mining and later joining the Navy.

WALLACE / WALLIS family - 1863-1884 letters from McIvor Goldfields
Transcripts of letters from WALLACE family members on the McIvor Goldfields, Heathcote, Victoria to family members in England. Contributed by Sue HOLLOWAY, Nth Qld, Australia.

Susan Welsford WENBORN (nee GULLOCK), journal
Transcript of the journal of Susan Welsford WENBORN (nee GULLOCK), 1844-1925 covering the voyage from England to Sydney in 1843 and life in the Colonies, particularly at Bendigo, Victoria.

Emma Shepherd's Letter Ballarat to England 1870
John Henry SHEPHERD married Emma Esther SHAW in the September Qtr of 1869 at Reading, Berkshire, England. The newly-weds may have arrived in Melbourne in October 1869 aboard the Great Britain. In January 1870 Emma wrote to her Aunt telling her of the voyage and how they settled on Soldiers Hill, Ballarat.

The aim of the society is to help people discover their family history. To have appropriate records available, with guidance in ways to research and record their history and genealogy.

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