"Unexpected link between his great-great-great-grand-father, James Cartledge and the founder of the Holyman Line, Captain William Holyman."
With the scheduled departure of the container ship Mary Holyman from the
While researching his family history in
The link was the 'Cousins', the Cartledge family's two-masted schooner that Captain Holyman sailed across the
Holyman was so pleased with the way the 'Cousins' handled that in 1862 he bought the schooner from James for "a sum not less than £100." The sale is recorded in beautiful copperplate writing in leather bound Register of Transactions preserved in the Commonwealth Archives, (Hobart).
The Bill of Sale is dated
So it was that William Holyman, who had jumped ship in Launceston in 1854, acquired his first ship, the first in what was to become the famous 'White Star' Holyman Line.
To quote the 'Examiner', of
This much is probably well known to those interested in
The Cartledge brothers were working a flour mill an the Supply Creek which supplied 40 tons of flour a week to government stores in Deloraine, Cleveland, Campbelltown, Norfolk Plains and Kerry Lodge. The two brothers had bought the mill in 1847, hoping to make new lives for themselves in the new colony.
With James's wife Margaret and children John and George, they had arrived in
The treadmill was used to turn a huge wheel which ground wheat into flour. Eighteen men walked up and down on the spot for 18 minutes at a time without a break. Each 60 seconds a bell would ring, allowing the end man to take a minute's break. When the bell rang again, he joined the line at the other end for another 18 minutes labour.
Sentences on the treadmill ranged from a few days to three or four weeks. James and John disliked their part in the penal system, and longed to start new lives for themselves and their families. John and his wife Eliza lived at the Mill at Supply Creek with their children John and Mary Anne. Several men and an apprentice worked the mill with John, and two of these were to mark their mark in the development and growth of colonial
Thomas Monds, later founder of the Monds' Roller Mills in Launceston and Carrick, served as an apprentice with John while learning the trade of mill management. Later he returned to manage the mill for the brothers, living in the miller's cottage with John and Eliza. Another apprentice who was to have a long and close association with the Cartledges was James 'Philosopher' Smith, the future discoverer of the
James and John had close ties with 'Philosopher' Smith, and he became their associate and confidante in many of their activities. The reference they gave 'Philosopher' on his departure to the goldfields may be seen in the Smith Collection in the State Archives.
Unfortunately, the Cartledge brothers, in Thomas Mond's words "did not understand the (flour milling) business at all", and after struggling with insufficient capital for two or three years, were forced to give up the mill.
However they had one important asset - the Cousins. Completed in 1850, and registered in April 1851, the Cousins enabled James, now a Master Mariner, to broaden his horizons. Soon he would be trading to and from
Taking on cargo at Launceston, James set sail for the Victorian goldfields. With stops at
Soon he was to discover there was better gold to be made from commercial transactions than scratching in the Ballarat dirt. A letter addressed to 'Philosopher' Smith, dated November 1852, shows James well established in this business,
However, by July 1854, the depression which followed the boom of the gold rush was already causing a downturn in trade, and James turned his eyes toward
By September 1855, he had returned to Torquay, taking up some land near to 'Philosopher' Smith's bush blocks. He was still trading, working the Cousins as a 'coaster', on the Launceston to Port Frederick run, shipping shingles, sawn timber, palings, bricks, coal and produce. The run was later extended to
Enter William Holyman
Holyman had arrived in Launceston in 1854 as an apprentice on board the barque Elizabeth Ratcliffe outwards bound from
Following his marriage to Mary Sayer in December 1855, the young couple moved to a cottage in Torquay, arriving three months after James' return from
The 'Examiner' Newspaper,
This article by Sue Cartledge first appeared in The ADVOCATE' Weekender, [