Henry and James Williams


In 1842 Henry Williams Faulkner, James’ first son with Mary Faulkner, married Amelia Davis the second daughter of Jane and William and one of James’ nieces.(Other than for his marriage to Amelia, Henry was known as just Henry Williams.) The two had first met on Maria Island around 1830 and Henry may have then lived with Amelia’s family. (see 1842 Census return for William Davis) The witnesses were the bride’s brother William Thomas Davis and his wife Harriett Matilda (nee Plastow); they had been married just four days earlier. The father of the groom and the mother of the bride were both children of Frances Williams. Henry and Amelia had one child Henry James Williams born in 1843. Amelia died on 5 July 1843 probably giving birth to her son.


As a child Henry James Williams was probably cared for by his mother’s family later worked as a shepherd, probably in Black Brush, as that is how he described himself when marrying on 11 June 1868. His wife was Amelia Nicholson widow of Henry Vane Nicholson of Black Brush who had died four years earlier. Amelia was from another Black Brush family the Luttrells, being the daughter of Alfred Luttrell (1830-1906) and the granddaughter of Dr Edward Luttrell. Henry Vane Nicholson was the son of the prominent legal figure Thomas Nicholson and his wife, another Amelia. They were the witnesses to the Will of Henry James’ grandfather James Williams in 1847. In 1875 a Henry Faulkner probably had a 60-acre farm at Tea Tree.


Henry Williams and Elizabeth Riley

After Amelia died Henry Williams probably worked as a labourer building roads. On 3 June 1845 he married again, this time to Elizabeth Riley. At the wedding he did not reveal that he was a widower but said he was a labourer from Forcett. Elizabeth was 19, five years younger than Henry. Elizabeth’s grandfather Thomas Riley arrived in Hobart in 1804 with Governor David Collins on the Calcutta. He was now a convict but had previously been a soldier and his military skills were employed by the Governor in defending the settlement. In 1800 he married Isabella Wright in Berwick on Tweed. She was then pregnant with their son Thomas Jnr. And in 1804 the family arrived in Hobart. All three received grants of land in the Pittwater district at Forcett in 1821.

Ann/Hannah Bryant had been transported on the Maria along with Mary Fawkner and arrived in 1818. She had been sentenced to death for assault and robbery in London but the sentenced was commuted to transportation for life arriving in Sydney on 17 Sep 1818. Ten days later she was again aboard ship, this time the Elizabeth Henrietta, bound for the settlement on the Derwent River, Tasmania. She arrived in Hobart Town on 14 Nov 1818. Ann is recorded in the 1820 & 1821 Muster but failed to attend the 1822 Muster. On 2 July 1823 she is recorded in reports of prisoners tried at Court of Criminal Jurisdiction as being found guilty and sentenced to be transported to Macquarie Harbour for two years. That sentence must not have been carried out as she is recorded in the muster of 1823 as being at Pittwater as servant to Mrs Riley.

In 1820 and 1822 she gave birth to first Thomas and then George Riley, presumably sons of Thomas Riley Jnr. Anne was in trouble again in 1824 as on 24 Feb it was recorded that she "had absconded from her Mistress’ service a week before Christmas and remaining absent until apprehended yesterday". On 5 April 1824 she married Thomas and is recorded on the Musters for 1832 and 1833 as his wife. In 1835 she was assigned to her husband. Elizabeth Riley was born on 27 July 1825 in the Pittwater district.

After the wedding Henry and Elizabeth appear to have returned to Constitution Hill. David Barber was dead but Henry’s brother was living there. Elizabeth was already pregnant at her wedding and that child Harriet Elizabeth was born there on 23 October 1845. Unfortunately she died soon after. A second child, Joseph was also born in that area he next year, he too died young aged 10 in 1856. By then three more girls and a boy had been born. The first of these, Mary Ann, was born at Forcett and the next three, Elizabeth, George and Sarah Webb, were born at Spring Bay. Perhaps Henry was still at work building roads.

By 1856 it looks as though Henry and Elizabeth had settled at Bream Creek. As James, in September 1856, Annie Norah, in March 1859, Thomas, in November 1861, Sussanah in January and Frances Maria in November 1867 were all born in the Sorell area. Henry was now 46 and Elizabeth 42. (Thomas died in 1863.)

Mary Ann Williams married Henry Robert Wiggins on 21 January 1867. Elizabeth first married Francis Bedelph 16 August 1869. After he died in 1885 she married George Burdon on 19 August of that year. Sarah married John Thomas Newitt Wooley in 1872. Annie married George James Jacobson in 1881 and in the next year Susannah married Thomas Bryan. Joseph Henry Williams married Eliza Buren on 12 Dec 1885.

Elizabeth Williams (nee Riley died on 3rd 1895 but Henry lived on to be one of the oldest residents of Bream Creek. He died there in 1909 and was buried with his wife in the local cemetery.

James Williams III

James I’s other son with Mary Faulkner, James Williams III, married Sarah Waine, 28, house servant, in his house at Constitution Hill (Bagdad) on 5 Apr 1852. They were married by a Congregational minister. Sarah was the former wife of George Waine whom she had married in Brighton 26 Sep 1842. She was born in Launceston 7 March 1823 as Sarah Boothroyde daughter of John and Elizabeth. (Her sister? Eliza, aged 15, married Charles Walker in Green Ponds 24 Jun 1839.)

Waine was on Ticket-of-Leave when they married. The ticket having been previously withdrawn was restored in March 1842 when he found a cheque in the street and delivered it back to the drawer. He had originally been tried in Lancaster England for receiving and was transported on the York arriving 29 December 1832. After the marriage he seemed to reform but was again in trouble in June 1846 getting 3 months hard labour at Bridgewater in June 1846 for being in a theatre and pretending to be free. His last misdemeanour was in December 1846. He was freed by pardon in April 1849. No record has yet been found of his death.

The witnesses at the Waine marriage were Joseph Barber and Elizabeth Harvey. (Elizabeth Harvey married Edward Collis in Brighton a year later. A relative of Elizabeth Williams/Collis?) Was Joseph Barber linked to David Barber with whom Mary Faulkner was with in this same area in 1830?

The 1848 Census has James Williams living in a wooden house at Bagdad in the Brighton District with an adult female and another adult male. All free, all born in Tasmania. All Church of England (sic), the males were farm workers and the female was a domestic servant. The female servant could have been Sarah Waine but her husband was not yet free being still on Ticket-of-Leave.

The man might have been Joseph Barber if the house they were living in was originally the one owned by David Barber circa 1830. This house was reported as being ‘at the 26 mile stone’ that would put it near the present town of Kempton. As we know that both James and his brother were there in 1830: perhaps he stayed.


Valuation Roll 25 May 1858 has James Williams occupying a cottage with land in Brighton owned by Jane Johnston of Green Ponds, He does not appear in later valuations in this district.