Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Story of John Hornby - Part 3: 'Working'

Following his arrival in Zeehan, I can only presume John found work fairly quickly.  I know he worked in one of the mines - the Mount Zeehan (British) mine.  Work probably occupied much of his time, but as he became settled into his new life, he found some time for recreation.




Disused locomotive in West Coast Pioneers Muse...Image via Wikipedia
In January 1893, work in the mines was ‘partially suspended’ during the holiday season. Special trains between Zeehan and Strahan were put on over the holiday period for miners to enjoy a day hunting at Malana or picnicing at the Ocean Beach on the coast. A cricket match took place in West Strahan between the Queen Cricket Club of Zeehan and the Strahan Cricket Club. Queen C.C. won the day, winning by 43 runs.  Hornby top scored with 24 runs! But not without injury – he was struck by the ball on the tip of the first finger of his left hand, which was “... almost crushed. Nevertheless, he manfully played out his innings and his pluck in so doing was much admired”. The Strahan men admitted they were beaten by worthy opponents.  The train home to Zeehan that night was drawn by two engines, consisted of 15 coaches and held almost 400 people.  A good day out!

John worked and saved his pennies with the aim of bringing his family to Zeehan to join him.  Clearly, economic conditions in Tasmania were better than in Dalton-In-Furness. By the end of 1893, John had saved enough to pay for Mary and the two girls to sail out from England. So by April 1894, it was Mary, Grace and Meg saying their goodbyes to family, friends and to England.  At 2.30pm on the 19th of April 1894, aboard the S. S. Tainui, they departed London. Destination: Zeehan!

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