Mr Thomas Henderson
- Born: Abt 1812, Knockin, Shropshire, England
- Marriage: Ms Elizabeth Hall on 27 May 1843 in St Johns Church, Halifax St, Adelaide, South Australia 1
- Died: 25 Apr 1862, Vine Inn, Glen Osmond, Adelaide, South Australia aged about 50 2
- Buried: 26 Apr 1862, Hindmarsh Cemetery, Adelaide, South Australia Upper A 25/26
Thomas Henderson was born about 1811 at Knockin, Shropshire, England. We have no record of his birth or baptism and nothing is known of his family and early life.
Thomas applied for a free passage to South Australia and was accepted on 5/9/1838. His papers state that he was a joiner, cabinet maker and ship's carpenter and his address at that time as 17 Price Street, Liverpool. On 6th October 1838 he sailed for S.A. as a steerage passenger on the “Orleana”, the first ship to sail from Liverpool to S.A. and arrived at Port Adelaide on 16th January 1839.
Thomas set up business in Adelaide as a joiner and on 30/12/1839 bought a quarter of Town Acre 612 in Gilbert Street, the first of many land purchases in and near Adelaide. Shortly after this Thomas tried his hand at farming as the Gazette of 1840 records that he was farming at Balhannah in the Adelaide Hills in that year, presumably renting land as he actually purchased this land, comprising 27 acres, on 29/7/1842. This land transaction was witnessed by Isaac Hall (older brother of Elizabeth). The land was sold in 1851. He had returned to Adelaide and was living in Rosina Street in May 1843 when he was married.
Thomas married Elizabeth Hall on 27th May 1843 in St John's Church, Halifax Street. She was the third of nine children and the eldest daughter of William and Sarah Hall and was born in Brampton, near Carlisle, Cumberland in 1824. The family migrated to Adelaide on the “Baboo” in 1840, and at the time of Elizabeth's marriage lived in Elizabeth Street, Adelaide, the street being named after her.
Thomas and Elizabeth set up house in Hanson Street, Adelaide and their first child Isaac Hall Henderson was born there on 7/4/1844. Soon after, on 17/5/1844, Thomas bought 4 acres at Glen Osmond, a most significant purchase. They first lived in a small cottage on the land but later built the Vine Inn and despite several temporary moves, this was the family home for the next 30 years.
Their next four children died as infants, not uncommon in those days. William was born on 20/11/1845, living only two months. Some time later the family moved to Gawler where Thomas assisted in building St Georges Anglican Church. Sarah was born there on 5/5/1847, dying two days later. Thomas purchased land in Gawler on 1/12/1847, and subdivided and sold it on 16/10/1849, after the family returned to Glen Osmond and about the time the Vine Inn was being built. They had returned to Glen Osmond by 1/2/1849 when Sarah Winefrede was born - she lived only three months.
Thomas subdivided the land at Glen Osmond; cottages were built in Vine Lane and shops on the corner of Vine Lane and Glen Osmond Rd. He built the Vine Inn in Glen Osmond Rd. He applied for a license which was refused on 13/3/1850. In his appeal Thomas stated that he had built a church and steam mill and done a great quantity of the best work in the colony and others who had done nothing had licenses granted to them while he was refused. His license was granted on June 16th 1850.
The Vine Inn was named because of an ivy vine planted on its northern wall. It consisted of 11 rooms, was two storeyed with underground rooms and slate roof and balcony; three stockyards, wooden stables and a string of cottages along Vine Lane. The “best work in the colony” referred to the large homes he had assisted in building in North Adelaide. Nothing more is known of the steam mill.
The fifth child, Thomas, was born on 16/10/1850, the first Henderson to be born at the Vine Inn, but he died when three months old. John was born on 22/10/1851, the second child to survive and he was baptised on 20/11/1851 at Holy Trinity Church.
Some time later the family, with Elizabeth's parents and their younger children, joined the gold rush to Victoria but it seems they did not stay there long as on 4/4/1853 they sailed for Liverpool on the new American ship “Shackamoxon” to visit Shropshire, presumably to see Thomas' relations. During their absence the Vine Inn was leased. The seventh child Thomas Hall was born at sea on 9/6/1853 and baptised at sea by an Anglican bishop.
The family returned to S.A. in January 1855. Thomas gave his occupation as Licensed Victualler when he registered young Thomas' birth but he was active in the building industry, as when Sarah Peggy (born 23/7/1855) was baptised on 23/10/1855 at Holy Trinity Church he gave his occupation as carpenter and builder, Glen Osmond. The 1855 Directory lists a Thomas Henderson, carpenter, Waymouth St, Adelaide, but this entry only appears in the 1855 Directory.
Mary was born on 26/2/1857 and baptised at a special baptism at Glen Osmond: she died on 16/3/1857 aged three weeks. The tenth child William Hall was born on 28/7/1858 the last child to survive to adulthood. The eleventh and last child was born on 16/6/1860. This child died after three weeks and no name was recorded on the birth register.
During this period Thomas made a number of land purchases, including 82 acres at Echunga on 18/7/1855, blocks at Kewhaven, north of Port Adelaide, and at Cowandilla in 1856, and in 1857 - 150 acres at Gumeracha, Section 112 Hd. of Onkaparinga. This farm at Gumeracha was always leased out and finally sold after Elizabeth's death, as was the land at Echunga and Cowandilla.
When Thomas returned to Adelaide from England he brought with him Black Spanish fowls, the first imported into S.A., which were exhibited at the Agricultural and Horticultural Show in February 1855. In 1856 Thomas was prominent among a group of local citizens involved in the planning and building of the first public school in Glen Osmond; “entirely unconnected with any denomination or other existing school”. Previously a house owned by the Henderson family in Vine Lane was used for school purposes by Mrs Platts, wife of the Rev. Platts who was most unpopular. On 26/7/1859 a meeting was held in the new school room and a Volunteer Rifle Corps formed at Glen Osmond when “Mr Henderson of the Vine Inn, the first person who enrolled himself, was loudly cheered”.
Register. 26th April 1862 Death Notice
On 25th April at Residence Vine Inn Glen Osmond,
Thomas Henderson died aged 50 years. Interred Hindmarsh Cemetery, Upper A 25/26.
Thomas and Elizabeth Henderson had eleven children, six dying in infancy. At the time of Thomas' death Isaac, the oldest, was 18 years old and William, the youngest, was four years.
On Thomas' death Elizabeth became licensee of the Vine Inn where she was held in high regard and known fondly as “Mother Henderson”. She remained there until 1874 when William was 16 years old. She then leased the Inn and bought Wattle Grove at Magill, a large house on 40 acres, and lived there until she moved to Seventh Avenue, St Peters some time between 1879 when her oldest son Isaac died and 1884 when his widow died. Isaac's family lived with her after his death and she reared his two children after their mother died. It seems that Isaac's daughter Winifred, a spinster, lived with Elizabeth at St Peters at the time of Elizabeth's death on 30th June 1916 aged 92.
Her youngest son William Hall Henderson lived nearby with his family at Athol Lodge, Fourth Avenue, St Peters.
Elizabeth's brothers are frequently mentioned in the Henderson story, especially Isaac whose wife Martha and daughter Sarah (died aged 12 years) are buried in the Henderson grave at Hindmarsh Cemetery.
Thomas' large toolchest with the contents, including 64 planes, all in immaculate condition 145 years after Thomas used them, is now in the possession of Robert John Henderson, his great great grandson who cares for them with great pride.
As at 30 May 1989, 362 descendants of Thomas and Elizabeth Henderson are listed on the Family Tree.
The above is compiled by
Barbara Rounsevell from
information researched by
John H. Henderson.
As at 24 March 2018 there are 797 descendants on the Family Tree.
Article on Knockin from 1868:
"KNOCKIN, a parish in the hundred of Lower Oswestry, county Salop, 6 miles S.E. of Oswestry. It is situated on a branch of the river Severn, and includes the extra parochial place called Heath Farm. There are some remains of a strong castle founded here by the family of L'Estrange, who possessed the manor in the reign of Henry II. and Henry III. In the latter reign Madoc, a Welsh nobleman, headed an insurrection, and defeated Lord Strange at "Cnukyn", as this place was anciently called. The village, now a small agricultural place, was once a market town. The tithes have been commuted for a rent-charge of £328. The living is a rectory in the diocese of St. Asaph, value £330. The church is an ancient structure, dedicated to St. Mary. The principal residence is Knockin Hall, the seat of the Hon. Captain Bridgeman, R.N."
[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]
Noted events in his life were:
• Immigration: Arrived Adelaide on "Orleana", 16 Jan 1839, Adelaide, South Australia.
Sailed from Liverpool on 5th Oct 1838. The 648 ton ship Orleana set sail under the command of Captain Cameron from Liverpool on October 5, 1838. Its arrival in Adelaide, South Australia, some three months later was noted: "Passengers, amongst others, James Barlow, Jas. R Harrison, H Johnston, Rose T Reid, Robert Dodgson, James Lamb, George Buster, 84 passengers in all."
ORLEANA - 1840
Master: Captain Cameron
Rigging: Ship; sheathed in copper in 1838
Tonnage: 649 tons
Construction: 1835 on the Isle of Man, using Elm, Red Pine, Pitch Pine & Oak planking
Port of registry: Liverpool
Port of survey: London
Voyage: sailed for South Australia 1838
• Building of the original anglican church "St George's" at Gawler, 1847-1848. Thomas Henderson was involved with construction of the original St Georges Church at Gawler which was built on a very small budget (even for that time) of 800 pounds and also very quickly taking only 12 month to completion from the time the foundation stone was laid. Unfortunately the church was badly damaged in a storm 6 years later and the decision was taken to demolish and build a new structure which is still standing today in Orleana Square, Gawler. The following is an extract from the book "Looking Back - Recollections of the Church of Engtand in Gawler 1846-1996"
"On January fifth,1845 a meeting was held in Gawler of 'Members and Friends of the Church of England'. The Rev. James Farrell was in the chair. At this meeting €100 was raised towards the building of a Church of England in Gawler." At this meeting, the following people were appointed - Messrs King, Grant, Butler, Younghusband and Stubbs - as a committee to carry out this resolution. These men were later appointed trustees, under a Trust Deed 20th March 1848, of the land on which the church was built, namely Orleana Square. Coombe, in his "History of Gawler", says this of the early church. "On March 4, 1847 the foundation stone of the Church to be called St George's was laid by H.E. Governor Robe in the presence of a large number of people including Mr G.S. Kingston the architect. On March 21st 1848 the Church was consecrated by Bishop Augustus Short DD who had arrived from England three months previously. The cost of this Church was just on 800 pounds including €100 for interior fittings. Half of this sum was raised by private subscriptions, about €150 was received from various religious societies, the Government grant amounted to €150 and the sum of €111 remained due to the Treasurer (Mr Wm Younghusband). The first vestry meeting was held on 24th April 1848 when Messrs King and H. Calton were appointed wardens. A few years later a Parsonage named 'Gulf View' was built on a block of land of 20 acres situated at Gawler East. This land was a grant from the SA Government which also contributed €150 towards the cost of the building. The Society for the Propogation of the Gospel gave €115 and €400 from subscriptions, making a total of. €674."
On Christmas Eve 1851, a tremendous storm of hail visited the town and completely shattered the east window of the Church and all three on the north side. The stress of this storm played havoc with the quickly built Church - too quickly built, Loyeu seems to think, for its stability - and major repairs were
necessary. He has this to say, "The building itself, though doubtless esteemed both useful and commodious at the time of its erection, has long since become an eyesore to the congregatiory who have seen handsome edifices rising in the neighbourhood belonging to other denominations; and the faulty construction of the walls, and heavy roof, rendering it necessary either to make extensive repairs or pull it down altogether. It was resolved, after due consideration, that a suitable edifice should replace it." Mr ]. Rudall was one of the trustees of the building fund.
• Carpentry: Bedside Cabinet made by Thomas Henderson, Abt 1850, Adelaide, South Australia.
This bedside cabinet is an example of Thomas Henderson's craftsmanship as a cabinet maker. Note the turned legs. The small drawer has hand cut dovetails.
• Occupation: Publican, 16 Jun 1850, Vine Inn, Glen Osmond. This is a photo of the Vine Inn on Glen Osmond Rd taken in 1916. The inn was owned and run by Thomas and Elizabeth Henderson in the mid 1800s. The inn was built in the 1840s and after several attempts Thomas was finally granted a licence to operate as a publican on 16th June 1850.
• Trip back to England, 4 Apr 1853. On 4 April 1853 the family sailed for Liverpool on the new American ship “Shackamoxon” to visit Shropshire, presumably to see Thomas' relations. During their absence the Vine Inn was leased.
When Thomas returned to Adelaide from England he brought with him Black Spanish fowls, the first imported into S.A., which were exhibited at the Agricultural and Horticultural Show in February 1855.
• Cemetery: Gravestone of Thomas Henderson, 19 Dec 2005, Hindmarsh Cemetery Upper A 25/26, Adelaide, South Australia. This is a picture of the gravestone for Thomas Henderson. The other people whose names appear on the stone are his son Isaac, daughter-in-law Jemima and his wife Elizabeth. Click on the image to obtain an enlargement. The picture was taken on this date by Frank Best.
The inscription on the gravestone reads:
“Sacred to the memory of Thomas Henderson who departed this life April 25th 1862 aged 50 years
Also Isaac son of the above died Jan 9th 1870 aged 34
Also Jemima Amelia wife of the above Isaac Henderson who died Feb 20th 1884 aged 35 years
Also Elizabeth wife of the above Thomas Henderson who died June 30th 1916 aged 92 years.”
• Alt. Death: Copy of Death Certificate, 25 Apr 1862, Adelaide, South Australia. This is a copy of the entry in the Death Register for Thomas Henderson.
Thomas married Ms Elizabeth Hall on 27 May 1843 in St Johns Church, Halifax St, Adelaide, South Australia.1 (Ms Elizabeth Hall was born about 1824 in Brampton, Cumberland, England, christened on 10 Oct 1824 in Brampton, Cumberland, England, died on 30 Jun 1916 in St Peters, Adelaide, South Australia and was buried on 1 Jul 1916 in Hindmarsh Cemetery, Adelaide, South Australia.)