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Breaden, Joseph Albert (Joe) (1859–1924)

from Advertiser (Adelaide)

Joseph Breaden, n.d.

Joseph Breaden, n.d.

from Pastoral Review, 15 April 1924

Born and bred in Central Australia, Mr. Joseph Albert Breaden, who died at the North Adelaide Private Hospital on Monday, was a magnificent specimen of the outback pioneer. The courage and hardihood of his father, a New Zealand settler, who, prior to coming to Australia had served through the Maori war, were his also in full measure, and allied to them was an intimate patience in dealing with the natives. Mr. Breaden, who was 65 years of age at the time of his death, knew the Far North of this State, as well as the Northern Territory, better than most men of today, and had been connected with more than one expedition through the vast hinterland of Australia. From his earliest boyhood he was accustomed to station life, and while yet in his teens he entered the employ of Messrs. Grant & Stokes on their famous Bendleby cattle station. Later, with his brother, Allan, he opened up the great Glen Helen station, at the head of the Finke River. No man had experienced more hardships and difficulties in the north than Mr. Breaden, who was always cheerful in the face of bitter adversity which dogged many of his ventures. He knew what it was to see his cattle die by hundreds in the lean drought-stricken years, and he had followed a racing mob with the floodwaters behind him.

For several years he managed Macumba Station, until his adventurous spirit prompted him to join Carr Boyd in his journey overland from Warrina to Western Australia. Mr. Breaden was then about 35 years of age, and was over 6 ft in height, and well-built. The Hon. David W. Carnegie happened to be organising an expedition to explore the country from Coolgardie to Kimberley. The young Scotsman took an instinctive liking to the great-hearted bushman, who was introduced to him by Benstead, and immediately offered him the post of second-in-command of the expedition. Mr. Breadon considered the problem thoughtfully for a few minutes and then clinched the bargain with the laconic ejaculation, “Right!” He made his arrangements to join the party forthwith. This was typical of a man whose word was known throughout the north to be his bond to white men and natives alike. The other members of the expedition were Messrs. Charlie Stansmore, Godfrey Massey, and Mr. Breaden’s devoted blackboy, Warri, who proved to be of untold value to the party by reason of his skill in tracking and his knowledge of the bush.

The party spent fourteen months in the heart of Australia, and gathered a great deal of most interesting data. The Hon. D. W. Carnegie, who was the son of a Scottish earl, returned to his native land, and subsequently wrote a book, entitled Spinifex and Sand, concerning his adventures in Australia. In this narrative he pays a handsome tribute to the courage and integrity of Mr. Breaden who is described as “one of nature’s gentlemen’s.”

Upon his return to South Australia, at the conclusion of the expedition, Mr. Breaden took up property near Port Augusta which he subsequently developed into the fine Todmorden Station. When he acquired it the only inhabitant was a miserable bush wurlie by the side of the one well the place boasted. When Mr. Breaden disposed of Todmorden last year, it was one of the show places of the north, with a large homestead, where the fine old pioneer and his wife delighted to keep open house. Numerous bores had been put down with good results, and Todmordern cattle, despite the distance they had to be brought, frequently topped the Adelaide and Melbourne markets. Mr. Breaden also acquired Henbury Station which he developed with great success.

A year ago, however, he sold both places, and came to live at Glenelg with his family. His strong constitution had undoubtedly been undermined by the hardships of his early life, but it was hoped that complete rest would restore him to health. At first he seemed to be regaining his strength, and Mr. Breaden was to be found at almost every cattle sale at the Abbatoirs. He never missed a metropolitan race meeting until a few weeks ago, when his health failed once more. His death on Monday was not unexpected. He leaves a widow and two daughters—Misses Molly and Sheila Breaden.

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'Breaden, Joseph Albert (Joe) (1859–1924)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/breaden-joseph-albert-joe-145/text1578, accessed 20 October 2014.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2014

Joseph Breaden, n.d.

Joseph Breaden, n.d.

from Pastoral Review, 15 April 1924