The Hardwick Site




John Smith of Birnam Wood
Diary 1852
Transcribed by Margaret Hardwick, 1996.
Digital version by Stephen Crawshaw, 2008.





1852
January 1st Warm and very fine, all my Company left, the Revd Mr Cooper here in the afternoon. Within this day Commences another year how fast Life fleets away, in 1850 I lost my two dear Children in 1851 my two dear Brothers, James and Robert departed this life how frail our hold on this Earth, let us adore the Almighty being that upholds us His Ways are inscrutable but no One Can doubt their Justice. Let us follow the Golden rule of doing unto our neighbour as we would be done by and then we will at least have a quiet conscience whilst permitted to remain on Earth and I hope a Chance of Happiness in the World to Come. "The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away blessed be His Name"
2nd Hot and Calm a very fine day. The Revd Mr Cooper Called Mr R Hobden here on business. Crow the Shepherd Cut a Ewes Throat because (it appears) it did not keep up with the Flock.
3rd Hot, Ther up to 94 Some Thund and a Storm of wind towards Evening, Thunder and Some Rain in the Night. Finished the Shearing
4th Moderately warm Mr G Bowman and His son James Spent the afternoon with us Thos & Andw McDougall Called on their way to Jerry s Plains
5th Hot, Mrs Doyle Her Sons Andw and Roscoe here heard that my Brother Robert had left me £300 but cannot vouch for the Correctness of the information, Kearnan the Thrasher absconded last Night. Andw took Sophy McD, to Singleton
6th Hot Ther 94. Cool breeze from S. E. towards Evening Leslie and Sandy McDougall returned Robt Doyle and Mr Hoford here and remained all Night
7th Very Hot, Ther 103 A Cool Breeze Set in from the South East in the Evening the Night Cloudy and looked like Rain Commenced pressing wool
8th Cool and Cloudy wind from S. E. (Cleaning Wheat.)
9th Moderately Hot, My People and Isabella Doyle went to a party at Kelso.
10 Hot and Sultry Thunder early in the morning and in the Afternoon but no Rain Ther 96 Mrs S Andw Cyrus and Leslie returned from Singleton
11th Weather the Same Ther. 96 Walter & Isabella Doyle Came from Singleton A Man of the Name Of Patrick Whalan who I hired for a fortnight last Monday the 5th Inst to do job work walk off this afternoon, telling the Shoe Maker the work was to hard for Him- This fellow was a Crawler and had agreed to job for a fortnight at the rate of 5 shillings per week and Rations Thunder in the Afternoon a Small Shower
12th Weather the Same as yesterday Ther at the Same height Cyrus and Walter started for Melbourne on their way to the Ballarat Gold Diggings Thunder in the afternoon but no Rain
13th Hot and Sultry Ther 95 Thunder in the Afternoon, The River rose yesterday obliged to hurry the Sheep over to this side Leslie went to Singleton with a Letter to HIs Brothers a Small Shower towards Sun Set.
14th Commenced Raining at day break and Continued Showery, a good deal of Thunder & Lightning at a distance Close and Sultry, breeze from S E in the Evening
15th Hot, Ther 97 finished pressing wool Fred Doyle here and borrowed my Fowling Piece. Cool breeze in Evening
16th Hot Ther. 98 The Revd Mr Cooper Mrs Cooper & Mr G P Bowman dined with us Crow the Shepherd returned to take out His Flock this morning. The Flock Came home in the Evening without the Shepherd, the fellow had absconded and took a Sheep Dog with Him
17th Hot, Ther up to 98 A very Strong breeze Set in from the South East in the Evening together with heavy black Clouds The frequent Breezes from the South in the Evenings lately render Nights Cool altho the days are very Hot. Wind during most of the day lately from the West. Mrs A McDougall, Thos and Emma arrived at B Wood
18th Cool and Cloudy Wind from S East Mrs & Children returned after Coming from Montrose Park
19th Cool and very pleasant all day early in the Morning and Evening very Cool
20th Morning Cool Middle of the day moderately Hot Cool breeze in the Evening Sent Nine bales of wool to Maitland by W. Giles Consigned to D & J Dickson Gross weight 2436 lbs.
21st Hot untill Evening when, thinc (?) Some Thunder and the wind got round to the S East which Cooled the Air. Ther up to 94 Received a Letter from John informing me that Brother Robert left me £300 to be paid within a year from the time of His diceasing £150 in Six Months and £150 in twelve months. Commenced Thatching my wheat Stack which is a troublesome job as I have only Straw to thatch with and that very Short.
22nd Very Hot and remarkably Sultry all day and Night Thel up to 98 Thunder Storm and two Showers in the afternoon, Paid Lanee the blacksmith the amount of His acct. 17 shillings 15 shillings of which was an Order on Messrs Dickson. Being payment in full up to the present date
23rd Cool and pleasant in the morning untill about 11 oclock the remainder of the day very Hot
24th Moderately Cool all day Mr Ward Called and bought Some Grapes and Nectarines
25th Hot and Sultry Some Thunder Lightning and a Shower in the Afternoon Thos McDougall Called on His way from Jerry s Plains Leslie went to Singleton, Hired a black Native (Billy Saddler) as a Shepherd for three months wages at the of £18 per year
26 Cloudy, and remarkably Close Commenced Raining about 4 oclock P M and fell in torrents all the Evening and the Whole of the Night. Received a Letter from Emma enclosing two Nuggets of Gold from Mount Alexander the Gold is beautifully bright and of a red yellow Color. Crow, the Man who left His Flock in the Bush and absconded on the 16th Came and asked for His Clothes which I gave Him as I am informed He is a Madman from His manner I believe he is deranged in Mind.
27th As heavy Rain the Whole day as I ever experienced the water Completely over the Fences in the Paddocks with difficulty we got Home the Sheep in the Evening owing to the rise of the Creeks One Ewe drowned in Crossing The Ground is so soft in the bush that a Horse cannot walk on it.
28th Raining all day Some very heavy Showers fell. The River up so as to prevent the Mail from runing. Grapes beginning to burst from the excess of moisture, a very great deal of Rain has fallen
29th Rained all last Night, The day Close & Sultry, Walters Wheat Stack wet nearly to the bottom, (So much for neglect, and leaving every thing for me to do-) pulling the Stack Down , Some Thunder and a Shower in the Evening
30 Very Hot and Sultry ’till nearly 12 oclock when One of the most furious Thunder Storms Commenced I have witnessed for a long time, The Water Covered all the low Ground in the Grass Paddock in a five Minutes going Completely over the top of the Fences I fear Walters Wheat will be totally lost as there is not a single day fine
31st Cloudy and threatening rain, The River very High


Feby 1st One of the most beautiful Days I ever beheld a very great quantity of the Grapes burst occasioned by the great fall of Rain. Fred Doyle Called on His way from Singleton Received a Letter from Cyrus yesterday informing me that He and party intend to sail for Melbourne on the 25th—
2nd Very fine Commenced making Wine from the black Cluster and red Madonna Grape a great number of the black Cluster Grapes falling off the bunches owing I Suppose to being over ripe and having had too much rain on them lately
3rd Weather the Same as yesterday, put Walters Wheat together and got Christy over to Cover it with bark, part of the day making Wine.
4th Cloudy part of of the forenoon the remainder of the day Hot part of the day making wine
5th Hot. Andw Started for Maitland. Gibs took my remaining three Bales of wool weight 826 lbs Gross and 3 Bales and two Bags of Andws weight 873 lbs the Revd Mr Cooper dined with us. Ther 91 Received a Letter on the 3rd Inst from William in which He informs me that His Share of the Gold He dug in three Months amounts to £233 at £3 per ounce and as He is sending it to England with taking an advance it will realize about £300 Very good for 3 months work
6th Very Hot. Leslie and Sandy went to Singleton foe Casks & Came back withoyt them, a Thunder Storm and a fine Shower in the Evening.
7th Thunder and very gloomy in the moring. A tremendous Thunder Storm from the South East in the Evening The Rain fell in Sheets mixed with Hail and the flashes of Lighting followed each other so fast that the atmoshere was Completely Illuminated the quantity of Rain that fell was enormous the Fences were Covered a yard over their tops
8th Cloudy and threatening Rain
9 Same
10th Hot and oppressive
11th Close and Sultry day and Night
12th Hot all day Mr Gaggin Called
13th Hot two Showers in the Afternoon James McDougall Came up and remained all Night
14 Hot and very Sultry Giles returned bringing my goods from Mr Dickson, who bought my wool at Thirteen pence per lb Andw McDougall and Isabella Doyle here remained all Night
15th Very Hot Ther up to 100
16th Hot and Sultry the whole day Mr Hobden here
17th Weather the Same Capt Russell bought two tons of Grapes more or less at 6 shillings per Crop
18th Hot Ther up to 98 wind from the West and a greatdeal of it. Rain in the Evening Capt Russell wrote me, He could not take the Grapes He agreed for, yesterday owing as He states to want of Hands and other Causes, I believe Him to be a Complete Shuffler
19 Cool and some Rain Revd Mr Cooper and Mrs Cooper dined with us and bespoke 400lbs of Wine Grapes which He agrees to take some time next week and to pay 11 pence per lb for them Fred Doyle here and remained all Night my Rams got out of the Paddock
20th It appears I Commenced drinking and like a madman continued drinking for nearly Four weeks, the only excuse I can make for this if an excuse is advisable at all is my total want of recollection of any thing that took place after I nonce became intoxicated


[there was a large gap on the page at this point]





March 15th Hot and Sultry, very ill myself
16 Weather the Same. John arrived about 10 oclock A. M. having come all the way from New Castle that day
17th Hot and very Close Doctor Glennie here Young Edmand Doyle here from the Barnum (?) My black Shepherd Billy Saddler absconded for what reason no one can form an idea taking a Sheep Dog with Him the property of the other Shepherd
18th Rain nearly all day Andw McDougall here
19th Sultry and Close Andw McDougall and my Andw started for up the Country
                                                       A Smith
                                                        ^ Isabella Doyle here
for New England and. A McD for His Station ^
20 Commenced Raining last Night and the Rain fell so heavy that it roared like distant thunder and Continued the whole Night and until 10 oclock to day when it began to abate a little Wilsons Flock of Sheep got mixed with Mr Hobdens yesterday and occassioned a great deal of trouble indeed the Sheep are not all seperated yet the Rain prevented our parting the whole of them. Hired a Shepherd yesterday named Peter Carr for 3 Months wages at the rate of £23 per year to Commence this Morning Carr bad with the Sandy blight and unable to take Charge of the Sheep Willie Doyle here Isabella went Home Several very heavy Showers during the day especially one Thunder Shower in the Afternoon
21 Close and Sultry, Counted Wilsons Flock and found He had lost 96 Sheep picked up about Forty during the day in Small lots many of them Severely bitten by Native dogs. John left us on His return Homewards and Leslie took Him as far as Singleton in the Gig Some Showers in the forenoon the River rising fast
22nd Very Hot the whole day and not a breath Wind, The River very high Leslie did not return Could not I suppose Cross the River Wilson mixed a large lot of His Sheep with the Ewe Flock I think the fellow must be Cranky, Peter Carr absconded
23d Hot have not found any more of the Sheep two of those that were bitten died Leslie return had to Come round by the Cockfighters Bridge
24th Hot, doctor Glennie here and brought His account £27 "O "0 which I paid and took His receipt, have not found any more of the lost Sheep two of those that were bitten died
25th Very Hot Mrs Brown from Jerrys Plains here and bought a lot of Fruit Very Ill last night from a burning pain in my right side and scalding in the Urethra.
26 Very Hot, The beautiful Dog Smoker has not been Seen for the last Three days I fear He is Stolen Mr Graham Called and brought One pair of the Spectacles Mrs Quantrill Stole from me We also Came to an arrangement about the debt Quantrill owes me it is now settled.
27th Very Hot, the Dog Smoker returned Home the late Rains have rotted about a ton of my best Grapes. My birthday. Age 59.
28 Very Hot, Andw McDougall dined at B Wood Mrs Smith and Leslie went to Singleton the old Shoemaker went on a Spree another of the Sheep that was bitten Died Jack Smith brought two Cheese I bought from him wt. 23lbs a Thunder Storm passed over this Afternoon
29th Very Hot and a great number of Thunder Clouds all round Leslie returned from Singleton in the Evening accompanied by Mr Meston who stayed all Night with us the old Shoemaker has not yet returned I fear He is lost Wilson lost 38 Sheep yesterday found some of them but we dont know how many till we seperate them from the Ewes & Lambs
30th Hot and Sultry Jack Smith here borrowed my dray and Four Bullocks to take Wheat to the Mill bought 8 Dzn Quinces Mr Meston left after breakfast adeal of wind in the Night
31st A Cool breeze from the S. E. all day


April 1st Hot nearly all day The Nights begin to feel Cool
2nd The Same as yesterday
3rd Very Hot for the Season Sent 62 lbs of Grapes and 49 Mellons to Singleton Leslie went to Singleton but did not return altho I requested Hin to do so
4 Hot Leslie returned and Stated His Mother was taken very if not dangerously Ill and that delayed Him Andw McD came up with Leslie on His way to Montrose So much Fruit in Singleton that Grapes and Mellons on brought 7 shilling & 6 pence did not in the Eyes pay for Sending down, Suffering from inflamation
5 Hot and Some Thunder and Lightning in the Afternoon but no Rain My Still very much inflamed and painful especially the Left Eye
6th Hot and a good many Thunder Clouds Mrs S & Leslie retumed from Singleton Received a Letter from Mr Solicitor Maclntosh of Bathurst informing me that £300 bequeathed to me by my late Brother was placed by Him in the hands of Messrs Gurner & Thompson from whom I Could obtain it when applied for and a receipt given
7 Weather the Same as yesterday Mr Andw McDougall Called on his return from up Country
8th Three Small showers before day this morning the rest of the day Cloudy about upwards of One Hundred Sheep got astray. they have been for the last fortnight without a Shepherd and always Came Home before Sun Set and never went far from Home the Revd Mr Cooper and His Son Theo Called
9th Cool and one or two Small Showers, Several of the Sheep Came Home severely bitten by Native dogs I found only One dead in the Bush There is a great many still absent
10 A good many Showers to day. Counted Wilsons Flock and found He had lost Eleven Sheep My flock picked up Three, Found all that were astray out of the Ewe Flock with the exception of about Five many of them severely bitten
11th A good deal of Rain fell last Night. The fore part part of the day Showery and very Close a Thunder Shower in the Evening Edward & Willie Doyle here Mrs Hart took away Her daughter Eliza a good riddance as She is a dreadful liar and Mischief Maker Leslie went to Singleton
12 Warm and Sultry Leslie returned from Singleton bringing Sophy McDougall with Him found 3 Ewes and One Lamb killed by N. Dogs
13 Fine and moderately warm, Poisoned Some Meat this morning.
14th Weather the Same, the moming rather Cold, Edwd Doyle here in the afternoon, put Six Rams into Wilsons Flock
15th Weather the Same, E Doyle & His Wife at B Wood
16th Rather warmer than yesterday Thos. Mc Dougall Came to B Wood in the Evening and remained all Night
17th Weather the Same as yesterday
18th Fine and warm, was Chipping a piece of fire wood this morning when part of it flew up and Struck me in the right Eye. Which it injuried very much and was attended with intolerable pain Fred. & Willie Doyle here E Doyle left intending to go to the Hawkesbury
19th Very warm, Leslie took Sophy McDougall, home Mr G P Bowman & Dr Glennie & Mr R Hobden Called
20th Remarkably hot for the Season Andw McDougall Thos McD & Fred D Came from Muswell Brook in the Evening F McD has been on a Spree Ther- up to 88 Singularly hot for the 20th of April
21st Not quite so hot as yesterday Andw McD Called and his brother Thos went Home wth Him Mrs E Doyle went to Montrose this Afternoon
22d A few drops of Rain just before day this Morning, the day Close and Sultry, Sent 25 dozen of Quinces to Jerrys Plains the Axle of the Cart broke Completely in two. Mr Samuel Dight dined with us and bought Six Bushels of wheat for Seed at 7 shillings per Bushel
23rd Hot, Sent the Axle to the Black Smith Who Could not mend it until tomorrow
24th Very hot a gteat many Thunder Clouds floating about in various directions. Andw returned from the Bundurra bringing Some fat Cattle with Him
25 Weather the Same, Andw & Leslie went to meet the Cattle and part them from Mr Munro’s Isabella Doyle & Mrs Ednd Doyle at B. Wood
26 Close and rather Cloudy Andw & Leslie returned bringing the fat Cattle with Him
27th Weather the Same, Andw Started for Maitland to endeavour to get His Cattle Back
28th Weather the Same, found a Native Dog Dead from the effect of Some Meat we Poisoned on the Night of the 24th Inst- Andw McDougal Sent Sandy the black to the Blacksmiths for the Cart who returned and Stated the Blacksmith was not at Home and that He left the Cart Harness at the Forge, it appears He never went to the blacksmiths and I know not what He has done w the Harness, Isabella & Mrs Ednd Doyle went Home Andw McDougall here
29th Weather the Same, Mr Meston here and remained all Night Andw returned from Maitland, Could not get His Cattle Back nor Could He obtain a servant of any kind
30th Very Hot almost like a Summer Day, Andw Started for the Turon with the fat Cattle Mr Meston left this for Singleton


May 1st Hot, Charles Gaggin Spent part of the Evening with us
2nd Hot, Hired a Shepherd of the Name of Patrick Reynolds for three Months Wages at the rate of £24 per annum
3rd Hot, James Doyle dined with us Sent the Cart to Singleton for Flour &c &c Leslie accompanied it Wilson States He left a Wether in the bush with a broken Leg
4th Rather Cloudy nearly all day. The Cart returned from Singleton
5th The Same as yesterday a good deal of Lightning in the Evening to the South a large Circle round the Sun nearly all day. Circles round the Moon have ben frequent during the last fortnight these Signs have always been considered the immediate forerunners of Rain, they have not been so this time. Three Ewes Lambed last Night and two Some days back
6th Fine moderately warm Day Edward Hill Commenced Thrashing Walters Wheat
7th Early in the Morning Foggy, the day Hot thunder Clouds about, There have been Several foggy mornings lately and it has threatened Rain repeatedly, The Shepherd Reynolds left out about200 Sheep
8th Cloudy and looked very like Rain until about 11 oclock when the Clouds Cleared off and the day became warm found the Sheep left out Andw McDougall and Willie Doyle here
9th Very foggy early in the morning most of the day rather Cloudy. The Horse Duke has been absent for the last Eight Days and Cannot be found.
10th Weather the Same
11th Started for Sydney and went on to Maitland got to Sydney on the 14th
15th Deposited £100 in the Bank of Australasia Sydney and forwarded £100 to the Bank of Australasia Maitland. Returned to B Wood on the 28th very ill from violent Bowel Complaint a good deal of Rain has fallen both on the Hunter and Sydney
29th 30th 31st Still very Ill. The Roads impassable


June 1st Weather fine
2nd The Same Andw went Riding to Johns
3 Weather the Same Mrs S taken Ill with Bowel Complaint and Head Ache
4 Fine Weather Mrs S Still Ill
5 the Same Leslie went to Singleton for Medicine a Native Dog in the Sheep fold last Night we drove Him away before He done any mishief 6th Some Rain in the morning and Some during the Night Poisoned a large Native Bitch last Night F. Doyle dined with us on His way to the Hawkesbury Mrs S and myself Still Ill the Svt Woman Ill
7th Very fine Sent the Cart to Singleton for Flour A McDougall and James Doyle Called on their way to the Peel Diggings Mr J Cooper Called and remained all night at B Wood The mornings have been very Foggy lately
8th Very Foggy which hung on till 12 oclock the afternoon dull and Cloudy looking very like Rain but none fell
9th Foggy in the forenoon Cloudy nearly all day
10th Some Rain in the Forenoon Cloudy all day Mrs S. & Leslie went to Jerrys Plains I forgot to State that I bought a very excellent Gig from Mr Durham on the first of June Mr G P Bowman Called Morning very Foggy
11th Forenoon Cloudy Afternoon Some Showers Paid Redmand the Taylor £2 "5 "3 due Him Morning foggy
12th Foggy in the morning Commenced Raining about 10 oclock and a very great quantity of Rain fell during the day the Creekrose above the Fence Thunder in the Evening. Hired J. Campbell as a Shepherd
13th Clear fine day. Commenced pruning Vines
14th Very Severe Frost the first we have this Winter Forenoon Clear Afternoon Cloudy and threatening Rain Killed a Cow I bought from John River rising fast
15th A Complete Storm of Wind the Whole day and all Night the wind very Cold and from the West
16 Fine and Clear all day but very windy received a Letter from Emma informing us that poor Walter is very Ill at Melbourne
17th Sharp Frost this Morning Most of the fine
18th Very Severe Frost The day beautifully Calm and warm. Andw returned from Parramatta
19th Cloudy and Cold all day, Found One of my Working Bullocks Dead in a hole on the Flat
20th Commenced Raining sometime last Night and Continued all day The Eagle Hawks very troublesome amongst the Lambs, Wrote to Mr Kirchner to obtain an Vine dresser and His Wife for me from Germany
21st Rain all Night and the Whole of the day. The Lambs Suffer Severely from the almost Constant Rain the Creek is up again Mrs S Ill in the Night

[Brought from the end of the Book, because John Smith skipped some pages]

June 22nd, Rained very heavy all Night and Rained all day but not very heavy Andw went to Singleton to see His Uncle Andw who we are Sorry to hear is very Ill
23rd Rained heavy all Night Showery all day very Cold, a Number of Lambs Died and Three full grown Sheep A very high Fresh in the River Andw Could not Cross yesterday and returned this Morning
24th Very windy from the West no Rain, poisoned a Burramurring measuring 6ft 4 Inches from the tip of One wing to the tip of the other
25 Very Windy Cold black black day, Some Rain in the Evening. Cleaning Walters Wheat which does not turn out as well as expected
26th Fine Sun Shiny day but very Windy. The River falling fast
27th Cloudy most of the day but no Rain
28th Fine bright day. Mr Meston Called & remained all Night with us, Removed 152 Wethers and Rams out of the Ewe Flock into the Wether Flock Hired a Man of the Name of Henry Ledger for two Months at the Rate of £26 per annum
29th Cloudy most of the day Mr Meston started for Merton the River falling fast 30th Weather the Same as yesterday


July 1st Fine warm day. Edward Hill’s Wife got drunk last Night and behaved in such an Infamous way that I ordered Her off my Premises this Morning Hill of Course went with Her. Andw went to Singleton and returned at Night.
2nd Fine until nearly Sun Set when we had Several Showers. Received Letters from Melbourne informing us that my dear Boy Walter has been at the point of Death and was and was given over by the Medical advisers He is now His Sister writes getting a little better and there is hopes of His recovery
3rd Cloudy but no Rain Ten Lambs died last Night from Cold and wet
4th Fine all day Leslie went to Singleton & returned
5th Very Hard Frost, The River rising again Clear and Warm all day
6th Severe Frost in the Morning the rest of the day warm Mrs S & Andw went to Mr Bowman’s in the Afternoon, Leslie went to Singleton
7th Frost the day Cloudy Mr & Mrs Harpur here and Emily Doyle a Mr Turner here and remained all Night Leslie returned from Singleton
8th Frost, fine bright day a little wind from the West Mr Turner Started on His way to the Turon
9th Frost and a very Sharp One a good many Lambs Dying
10th One of the most Severe Frosts I recollect, the Leaves of all the Forest Trees were quite White with Frost it is Seldom it rises So high The Revd Mr Cooper called twice
11th Sharp Frost, Mr & Mrs Harpur left this
12th Cloudy bleak day I sent the Cart to Singleton with Six Bushels of Wheat to get Ground, Andw went to Singleton and took Money to pay Meyne, Craddock, & Thompson,
13th The day warm for the Season. The Cart returned but Could not get the Wheat Ground had to buy 300 lbs
14th Very Windy from the West Cleaning Walters Wheat
15th Windy Mr & Mrs Bowman & Three of their Family Called
16th Very Windy and Cold a light Shower in the forenoon. The Shepherd Says Some Sleet fell on the high Hills about Three Miles from thus Mr Ward Called and received payment in full of His own acct and the Maitland Mercury
17th Rather Cloudy Most of the Day Leslie went to Singleton to look after a Greyhound left there
18th Hard Frost Leslie returned, could not find the Pup
19th Hard Frost, the day fine and warm
20th A very severe Frost the Forest Trees white with Frost to their tops The day Cloudy & Cold Mr R Hobden here on business Leslie went to Singleton
21st Cold and Black all day. A Small Shower in the Night and one about Sun Set. Ommitted on the 20th to State that Henry Ledger Commenced Thrashing my Red Wheat at 7 pence per bushel & Rations whilst Thrashing
22d Frost Mrs S and Andw went to Singleton
23rd Frost Mrs S and Andw returned Leslie looking for the working Bullocks that have been astray for the last month
24th Frost Mr & Mrs G. P. Bowman and Miss Eliza Bowman took Tea with us
25th Frost, Cloudy part of the day
26th Cloudy all day Mr & Mrs C Harpur Came to Spend a few days with us, Received a Letter from Cyrus informing us that Walter is recovering fast
27 Cloudy nearly all day
28th Rather Cloudy Mrs S Andw & Leslie went to the Benedicts Ball
29th Frost the day very Windy
30th Very heavy Rain all Night day fine Mrs S & Leslie returned from the Ball. My People Cleaning Wheat
31st Frost, Mr Thos Cooper here on business with Andw


August 1st Very Hard Frost the day fine but Windy 1852
2nd the Same. discharged the Shepherd Reynolds
4th The Same Mr G P Bowman and Miss M. A. Called
5th Foggy, day Cloudy a little Rainy in the Evening bought a Cow from Mr Bowman for Slaughter She turned out fairly midling Meat
6th Cloudy and threatening Rain Dr Glennie and the Revd Mr Cooper Called. Andw returned from Maitland
7 Rained Constant and heavy all Night a good deal of Rain during the day and a good deal of Wind from the North West
8th Cloudy and Threatening Rain all Day. Very Windy from the west
9 Very Windy and a few light Showers a great Fresh in the River
10th Fine Calm Day. The River very High Cannot be Crossed Andw & Leslie went to the Races
11th A good deal of Rain and a Complete Storm of Wind the Whole day the Wind North of West
12 A deal of Rain and a tremendous Wind all last Night blew almost a Hurricane all Day. Wind from the Same quarter as yesterday The Creek Runing
13th Blowing from the Same quarter all day. A Man evidently out of His Sences Called At the She Makers Hut enquiring the Way to Watsons. I told Him He Could Not Cross the River He answered He Would go to where He Could Cross and proceeded thro’ my Paddocks down the River He had a Bed tick and a good deal of Something in it on His Back He was a very tall Man and had a few Marks on His Face as if He had been in a Scuffle The River up again
14th A very Cold Day Several Showers of Small Hail or Sleet. The wind all Night and the Whole of the day has been a Complete Storm Andw and Leslie returned from the Races
15th Forenoon rather Cloudy Afternoon Clear and warm Mrs S and I went to Church at the Cockfighter
16th Very fine Clear day Sharp Frost in the Morning
17th Sharp Frost. the Forenoon Cloudy Afternoon Clear Bought a fat Cow from Jack Smith for £1 "10 "0
18th A Frost many heavy Clouds Like Thunder Clouds Mr Samuel Dight Called
19th The forenoon Close and when the Sun Shone rather Hot A very heavy Shower accompanied with Thunder in the Afternoon
20th Rather Cloudy the Sun Shining at times Andw has been Handling the young Stallion Seagrave (Muleson) for the last two or three Days
21st Showery all day but no heavy Rain and the Showers were not frequent
22 Showery and a good wind Some Smart Showers during the Night. Went to the Flat yesterday and was agreeably surprised to find the whole of my Working
                                                        and found Leslies Grey mare with a black foal
Bullocks after being away for upwards of two Months ^
23 Showery very Windy and remarkably Cold. Ledger took the dray and Four Bullocks to Singleton for Flour, Bags &c &c Leslie went to Singleton
24 High Fresh in the River again Leslie, Dray &c &c Had to return to Singleton, Could not Cross at Mr. Bowmans. Some Rain and much Wind during the Night a very little during the day. The River is no sooner fordable than it rises again
25th Fine Some Rain during the Night. My dray at Mr J McDougalls Cannot get Home for the Water Mr & Mrs C Harpur came to reside at Birnam Wood for a time
26th Fine all day. Leslie returned in the aftrnoon and the dray in the Evening had to Come by the Cock. It appears Ledger got Drunk and in Consequence the Team was delayed a Whole day.
27th Windy most of the day. A fog early in the Morning — a Small Shower a little before Sun Set.
28th Very fine bright day. Cleaning Wheat, which the Weavils are getting into fast
29 Fine Calm and warm. wrote to Cyrus a long Letter
30th Frost. the day fine but Cloudy until towards Evening when it Commenced Raining and Rained without intermission nearly the Whole Night. MrRobt Howe Called and remained all Night. Murray absconded
31st Cloudy part of the day, the other part Sunshining Mr John Bowman Called and dined with us.


Sepr. 1st Fine with Cold wind all the day. The River up again as high as before. Finished pruning Vines and filling up blanks.
2nd Fine and Calm. Commenced Grafting Vines
3rd Weather the Same as yesterday Mr A Doyle Called
4th Weather the Same beautifully fine
5th The Same, rather warm for the Season. James & Isabella Doyle Called the River Subsiding fast
6th Very Hot. Thunder Lightning and a little Rain in the Evening and Night James and Fanny Doyle Called Fanny remained
7th Windy and Cloudy most of the day F. Doyle went Home
8th Fine and moderately warm
9th Warm and Clear Mrs S & Leslie Set off for Morpeth in the Gig Mrs S on Her way to Melbourne Andw minding the Sheep. The orange Trees and Vines beginning to bud James Doyle
10 Cold and Cloudy with plenty of wind. Received a letter from Cyrus
11th Fine in the forenoon Some Showers Afternoon
12th Fine and warm. My Sister Called on Her way to Singleton to See Her Daughter in law who is very Ill Mr Hobden Called on business
13th Weather the Same Mrs Doyle & James returned and remained all Night. Wrote to Cyrus
14th hot for the Season
15th Hot and rather Cloudy a Shower in the Afternoon Leslie returned from Seeing His Mother on board of the Steamer
16 Rather warm in the forenoon Afternoon squally with Rain wind from the South East
17th Calm and Moderately Warm Revd Mr Cooper Called Mr R Hobden here on business
18th Warm and Still Mr J J Harpur J Harpur and and Mr R Hobden Called
19th Weather the Same. Ledger the Thrasher Walked away taking His beding &c with Him and having His work unfinished
20th Warm and Sultry plenty of Black Clouds in the West and a Stiff breeze for a time Ledger returned at Night fall perhaps He will finish the Stack Mr C Harpur went to Singleton
21 A good deal of Rain during the latter part of the Night Some Showers and a Thunder Shower in the Evening
22d Forenoon fine, with Wind from the west Afternoon Rain Commenced about half past 4 oclock, and Continued to Rain heavy and without intermission the whole of the Night
23rd Rained a little in the Morning before breakfast the rest of the day fair
24thFine my dray went to Singleton with 37 and a half Bushels of Wheat to be Ground into first and 2nd Flour, The Eagle Hawks Killed a Lamb
25th Warm and fine Poisoned two Lambs and Killed by that means Six Eagle Hawks. The River up again so that no one Can Cross my dray and Andw did not return I suppose they Could not Cross the River Received a Letter from Mrs S. who wrote from Sydney
26th Fine tho rather Cloudy the dray returned and Andw also Could not get the Wheat Ground One hive of Bees Swarmed and we have them in a Box
27th Hot during the Forenoon a deal of Rain Afternoon A Thunder Storm and very heavy Rain during the Night Ledger received a Summons and had to go to Singleton
28th The forenoon fine, plenty of Rain Afternoon Cleaning the Wheat Ledger left uncleaned
29th Very fine and warm, Cool breeze in the Evening from the S. E. Sandy McDougall Came up with Andw to help with the Colts, Bought the Dapled Mare and Foal from Mr Horne for £5 "0 "0
30 this morning and yesterday morning Foggy the Sultry Andw Leslie & Sandy Cutting and Branding Colts Ledger not yet returned Mr R Hobden here on business


Octor 1st Foggy in the morning the day very Windy
2nd Light Rain early this morning and during part of the Night Sandy McDougall went Home and Leslie went to Singleton with Him
3rd Cloudy all day Some Ewes and Lambs left out on Thursday and some of them found Killed by Native Dogs Fred Doyle here. Andws Colt got away with tackle on
4th Very Cold the whole day. found it was a mistake about the Sheep being Killed by N Dogs Revd Mr Cooper Called
5th Weather the Same as yesterday. Andw went to Singleton to see after Ledger
6th Foggy in the morning early, The day was warm. Ledger returned found Andws Colt Minus the Tackle a few drops of Rain near Sun Set.
7th Very Windy the whole day Mrs Andw McDougall and Sandy Came up to Stay a few days with us
8th Fine warm and just enough of a wind to be agreeable My Sister & Child dined wth us
9th Hot and Sultry Forenoon Cloudy & Close Afternoon Mrs McDougall and Sandy went Home Mr & Mrs Cooper and Willie Doyle Called Mrs Harpur has been very unwell for the last two days
10th Raining part of the day and Some fell in the Night Cold wind from rhe S. E. The Nights have lately been Cold for the Season. Campbells Flock out ’till 8 oclock ar Night we thought the Sheep were lost. Mr & Mrs Cooper Called
11th Warm all day. My dray Started with a load of Wheat to Singleton but Could not get up the Bank at Wisemans and had to return. Two swarms of Bees left the Hives. We were lucky enough to get them both. Edward Doyle Called Mrs Harpur had a fit of Hysterics
12th Hot. a good of wind, Afternoon Edward Doyle Called on His way to Singleton Andw bought His Cattle, or rather the Chance of them if Collected for the Sum of £12 "0 "0
13th Hot and Clear. Bought a Bullock to Kill from Mr Nd Hobden Mason brought the tackle Andws Colt lost His Son found it in the bush
14th Hot all the day, Ledger the Thrasher ran away and left pan of the Stack in a bad State if Rain Comes in any quantity Mr & Mrs Edward Doyle and Mr James Doyle Son from the Hawkesbury ( Aawn) at B Wood
15th Hot and windy received a letter from Walter Containing news of Charles Dight being very Ill of Fever, God Send Him Safely over it.
16th Commenced Rainong about 9 oclock A M and Continued all day and the whole of the Night the Rain during the Night was very heavy Andw had a Letter from His Mother yesterday. Mr E Doyle & Family appear to Settled down at B Wood without with your leave or by your leave the Impudence of Some People is astonishing. Some of Capt Russels Sheep got moved with Mine the French Man says 32 and requests me to allow them to remain for a time [penned sideways in the margin] 17th Some Rain in the morning the rest of the day Windy Wind and the late Rain from the S. E. Andw Doyle Started Homeward after Dinner Andw Smith went to Singleton Mr & Mrs E Doyle left at the Same time.
18th Cloudy nearly all day. Received a Letter from Port Phillip apprising me of the Death of my most loved and highly respected son in law Chales H Dight. Cut off in the prime of life and at a time when honors and Riches were flowing over Him. Andw returned accompanied by Andw McDougall Mr W Bowman Called
19 Fine, but very Sultry in the Forenoon Afternoon a Thunder Storm and a good deal of Rain another Thunder Storm during the Night and a great deal of Rain Wrote a Letter to Mrs Smith and One to John. Leslie went to Singleton along with Andw McDougall
20th Fine all day Leslie returned from Singleton He Could not Cross at Wisemans as the River had risen and He had to Come by the Cockfighters Creek Mr & Mrs E Doyle at B Wood Hired a Shepherd of the name of John Gardner for three months at the rate of £25 per annum
21st A beautiful day. A high fresh in the River Mr & Mrs E Doyle went to Singleton
22nd Hot and very Sultry
23rd Hot. The Shepherd I hired on the 20th went away Stating He Hired when almost out of His mind from drink and that He had a Wife and two Small Children (that He had left) them on the road to the Diggings Mr & Mrs G Bowman Called Mr E Doyle Came in the Evening and remained all Night
24th Hot, and hot wind from the west Ther up to 88 in the Shade My Sister Fred, Willie, Emily, & Rose here in the afternoon, The River falling fast. Ed Doyle went to Singleton on Old Jessie
25th Hot, and windy. very Ill with pains in the Head got easier and Cleaned Some wheat went to Singleton took pains in my Head and Limbs on Monday Night Confined to bei Tuesday Dr Glennie gave me to doses of Medicine which gave me Some relief
26th Hot and not quite so much wind
27th Moderately warm and a little wind from the West Strange that I have not had a Letter from Port Phillip Since the 18th Just returned from Singleton in the forenoon picked up the Old Shoemaker who had been on a Spree and was astray in the Bush
28th Weather the Same as yesterday. Making Pens for Sheep Washing tomorrow
29th Cloudy and threatening Rain. Afternoon Thunder Lightning, and Rain, Sheep washing, washed 871 Making a finish of one Flock. 3 drowned
30th Hot in the forenoon. Afternoon Thunder Lightning and a great deal of Rain. very Cold for this Season. Andw received a Letter from Walter
31st Weather the Same as yesterday, Raining the whole day and plenty of Thunder and Lightning


Novr 1st Fine and very little wind the weather has been very capricious lately. One hour Hot and the next Cold James McDougall here
2nd Fine. Andw went to Singleton
3rd Fine but very Close and Sultry Leslie went to Jerrys Plains and brought the wool Packs
4th Very Windy and Cold Andw returned, Leslie went to Singleton for Leather
5th Fine warm day. Commenced Shearing, Fleeces very light indeed, lighter than I have ever knew them, So much for the Grass Seed in the Winter Leslie returned from Singleton
6th Hot, Mr G Bowman & Rev Mr Cooper Called
7th Fine and a Cool breeze from the South East Andw went to Singleton & returned Sent to the Post office no letters from P Phillip, Took not less than Forty lbs of Honey out of a Hive
8th Very Hot, My People Sheep Washing I shepherded the Ewe flock, the wether flock bad to wash
9th The Sun rose as red as fireand Continued So till past 8 oclock, and set the same Color, The day Hot with a hot withering wind from the west. Finished washing Sheep, I was the Shepherd again to day, the Sheep troublesome to mind 3 Sheep drowned. Leslie forgot Andws Saddle and bridle at the washing pen, they were stolen in the Night
10th Cloudy and like Rain forenoon Afternoon Hot received a Letter from Mrs S. dated 18 last month it has been lying in some post office upwards of a fortnight since it came to Sydney. The Six Sheep were drowned through not having enough Men in the water
11th Hot all day. the Shepherd Cmpbell away drinking Andw and Leslie went and brought Him Home The whole Family have been and are now afflicted with a painful and very itchy rash Mrs Harpurs little boy has had it very bad, A Cool breeze has Set in from the S. E. the last three Evenings which Cooled the Air
12 Very Hot and Wind from the west Leslie Caught Some Fish
13th Hot all day finished the Shearing the Ewe Flock yesterday. Old John finished Thrashing Wheat
14th Very Hot and Several Storms of wind during the day and Night Theg up to 92 Received a Letter from John yesterday
15th Very Hot but not quite so much Wind. Ther 92 the Same as yesterday. My People Shearing.donohue not able to work. got hurt fighting
16th Weather the Same as yesterday Cool breezes in the Evening Mr Eastmune dined with us Donohue the Shearer went away being unable to work
17th Very Hot and Hot Wind Ther up to 94 Andw went to Singleton in the Evening. Bought 32 wethers from Capt Russell that got Mixed with Mine and not being Ear Marked we could tell the whole of them. Gave £9-12-0 for them, good Fleeces on them.
18th Not so Hot as yesterday Some Thunder Lightning and a few spats of Rain Afternoon
19 Weather the Same as yesterday. A Cool breeze Sprung up after Sun Set from the South East. Shearing going on Slowly. A number of Sheep left out on the Night of the 17th a good many of them bitten by Dogs. We are Still troubled with prickly Heat or Some other irruption on the Skin which is painful troublesome & Itchy
20th Cloudy and a few drops of Rain in the forenoon Clear and Hot Afternoon a Cool bteeze in the Evening A lot of Sheep left out yesterday and some of them Killed by Native Dogs we Cannot tell how many until Shearing is Completed. the weather is so hot and Windy that the Wool is getting dirt Old John Commenced Cleaning round the Fruit Trees this very dry hot weather will injure the late Wheat
21st Cloudy and very Close all the forenoon Afternoon Thunder Lightning and some Rain Campbell the Shepherd Sprained His ankle and lost half his Flock, found them all safe. Edward Doyle Called Andw went to Singleton
22d Hot until Evening when a wind set in from S. E. that was positively Cold Some of my People getting the Influenza this very changeable weather Must be unhealthy. A great deal of the Table Grapes blighted this season and I am told the Grapes in the neighbourhood of Singleton are much injuried from the same Cause. Much troubled with Rheu=
23 Hot at times a good deal of Thunder and some Rain during the Night
24th A Complete Gale of wind. Finished Sheep Shearing
25th Cloudy and a little Rain, Sent the Dray to Singleton Campbell lost about half His Flock
26th Moderately Cool the Evening Cold Andw laid up with Influenza Campbells Stray Sheep Came Home in the Night and got mixed with the Ewe Flock. Fleeta Came Home this Morning from Singleton I Suppose She got out of McDougalls Paddock. the dray did not return perhaps the Bullocks are lost
27th Weather the Same until about 4 oclock Afternoon when it became really Cold with Strong Southerly wind The dray returned bringing 1684 lbs of Flour from Singletons Mill. The driver got drunk and delayed the Team
28th A deal of Thunder Lightning and Several fine Showers during the day and before day light this morning, Andw Leslie and the Shepherd all Ill with Influenza part of the Afternoon and Night as Cold as winter the weevils are spoiling my wheat and I cannot send it to the Mill. not being able to hire a Man to drive Bullocks
29th Cold nearly all day very Cold in the Evening. The Men who agreed to Reap my Wheat, Paddy and Callaghan went away drinking yesterday Morning and have not yet returned Andw went to seek for them but Could not find them.
30th Heavy Rain nearly all day. Shepherding to day Leslie being Ill find the Influenza Coming on. Paddy returned and will Commence reaping in the Morning


Decr 1st Fine moderately warm day accompanied with a good deal of Wind from the west. The Shepherd lost half His Flock they were found. Commenced Reaping an old Man reaped a little on Saturday. I have the Influenza but not badly yet. The weevils are destroying my wheat, that is in Store and I Cannot hire a Bullock driver to take it to the Mill The last Letter I received from P Phillip is dated 18th Octor. This unwarrantable neglect is rather too bad
2 Cold and Some Showers Afternoon, Hired Robt Mawe & Mate to Reap, hired Some blacks also very Ill with Influenza obliged to go to bed at Sun Set to keep my Self warm, Our neighbor Christy Oharra is very near dead from the Same Complaint
3 Fine Clear day. Very Ill with Influenza Hired Farm blacks and let them to Reap Mr Meston & Andw Mc Dougall here and remained all Night Mr Parnell here also Mrs Harpur & Infant Ill. Campbell left out 411 Sheep found all except Five
4th Warm day till Evening when the sea breeze let in Mr Harpur had to go to Singleton for medicine for Washington who is very Ill Andw went to Singleton The last Letter from Port Phillip that I received is dated 18th Octor and altho I have repeatedly written have never received an answer. Such unwarrantable neglect is to say the best very Culpable.
5th Weather the Same as yesterday Fred Doyle dined with us
6th Cool & pleasant My Sister and Her Sons Edward & Roscoe here in the afternoon finished pressing wool Still Ill from Influenza Leslie went to the Post Office but got no Letters from P Phillip
7th Weather the Same, two or Showers during the forenoon with Thunder & Lightning. Sent the dray to Singleton with 39 Bushels of wheat to be Ground. Andw went to to Singleton Old Mr Bowman Called
8 Moderately warm. I hear my Bullock driver got drunk and stayed at the Cock all Night. that He knocked a Horn off one of the Bullocks The Reapers Robt Mawe & Mate went away drinking yesterday morning and have not yet returned
9th The day warm. Completely laid up with Influenza My dray returned, the Man got drunk and knocked the Horn off one of the Bullocks
10th Cloudy and Cool Confined to bed and very Ill and Weak Andw returned from Singleton Finished Reaping
11th The same Settled with the Reapers and paid was unable to pay them yesterday. Paid Campbell the Shepherd when time expired this day Leslie at the Post Office no Letters from P. Phillip. the silence from that quarter is strange indeed.
12th Warm. A flock of Sheep in the yard whilst the vagabond Shepherd is away drinking Mr Harpur was kind enough to take them out for a few hours in the Evening the Revd Mr Cooper Called Sandy McDougall Came from Singleton with Andw and brought a Letter He received from Cyrus all my Peole have been Ill with Influenza and that accounts for their not writing Fred Doyle at B Wood and remained all Night
13th Very Hot Ther up to 90 in the Shade. Commenced drawing in Wheat Andw went hunting for the Shepherd and Caught Him towards Evening. The fellow returned lightened of His Cash of course as he had only Nine Pence left out of £5-7-5 pence He had from me on Saturday Evening. Received 4 Letters from Port Phillip my People there have all been Ill and that accounts for their not writing.
14th Very Hot Ther 91 bad weather for drawing Wheat Mr & Mrs Harpur went to reside at Maryville, My health is mending tho Slowly
15th Very Hot and Close Thel up to 98 and was as high as 88 at Nine oclock at Night. Finished drawing in Wheat
16th Last very Hot the Thelwas as high as 76 at Sunrise this Morning Some Showers in the fore Noon heavy Rain all the afternoon till Sun Set. Campbell allowed His Flock to Mix with the Ewes this Evening Black Bird one of the Leading Bullocks jumped out of the Paddock and we cannot fine Him, One of my Feet a good deal swollen with the rheumatism
17 Cool and pleasant. The dray went to the Mill Andw went to Singleton, The Frenchman I and Jarvis Thatching the Stack, Willie Doyle Called to See if I cant Lend His Father two or Four Working Bullocks to assist in drawing Wool to Maitland.
18th Hot, Finished thatching Stacks. The dray returned bringing Nine Bags of Flour Andw returned also, drafting Sheep
19th Very Hot. Ther 92. Leslie went to Singleton
20th Little Sun Shine but remarkably Close and Sultry. Thel up to 90 The Dray Stacked for Singleton with 36 B 52 lbs of Wheat to be Ground A Small Shower in the Evening. Some blotches Coming all over my Face
21st Cloudy and Cool, the dray returned but bought no Flour Leslie sold Andws black mare for £5-2-6 Old Mr Howe died on Sunday last
22 Very Hot Ther up to 90. The dray went to Singleton and returned with a Load of Flour & Bran. He took a Load of wheat down Edmund and Fred Doyle here 26 Bushels and 20lbs in 10 Bags
23rd Hot and very Windy from the West The Grass afire in the Flat opposite, this dry weather and winds is killing all the Grass and will destroy the Grapes. This has been a bad Season for Fruit Andw returned from Singleton Ther 89
24th Very Windy but not very Hot Ther 80 Fire burning furiously over the River Edmund Doyle here in the afternoon and remained all Night. My health is far from good Minding Sheep till 1 oclock Jarvis had a good deal to do to prevent the Fire from harming His Stacks
25 Very Hot and not a breath of Air Ther 100
26th Same a good deal of Smoke about Ther 99
27 The Same Old Lively the Water Bullock Died on the 27th
28th The Same 29th The Same Ther 101, 102, 100,
30th Very Hot Ther up to 104 No wind at all
31st Very Hot Ther up to 107 The Same


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Hardwick.site web page made 16 October 2008; last edited