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Stubbs, William (1767–1805)

On Wednesday fortnight Wm. [William] Stubbs, a settler on the River Hawkesbury, was unfortunately drowned in crossing that river in a canoe; a second person was accompanying him, and when in about the center the vehicle unexpectedly upset, and the above unfortunate man depending on his ability to swim on shore, advised his companion not to quit the boat, as it would be sure to drift, on the banks. He did so, and saved his life and Mr. Stubbs, after very nearly gaining the shore, unfortunately became entangled among a cluster of reeds, from which unable to extricate himself, it was his fate to perish in the presence of one of his children, who witnessed the melancholy disaster from the bank. The accident is the more afflicting, as the deceased leaves a widow and large family to deplore his untimely fate; the circumstances that led to which still heighten the calamity. The house was the day before surrounded by natives, at whose appearance Mrs. Stubbs being excessively alarmed, she fled towards the river side, and would have precipitated herself into the stream, had she not been prevented by assurances from one of the natives that she or her infants should not be harmed. They afterwards gutted the house of its whole contents, and retreated with the plunder, and as soon as the deceased was made acquainted with what had happened, were closely pursued towards the Mountains, but in vain, as no single article of the property was recovered. As not a requisite to comfort remained to the family, Mrs. Stubbs set out that night for Parramatta, in order to procure a few requisites more immediately wanting; and during her absence the unfortunate event of her husband's death took place. In addition to the lamentable circumstances that tend to multiply embarrassment upon the above unfortunate family, we have feelingly to mention, that within the space of twelve months they have been four times bitterly distressed by hostile natives, who have at either time stripped them of domestic comforts or "swept their fields before them." The poor child who sadly witnessed the dying struggles of an unfortunate parent is a fine boy, nearly eight years old; and eldest of four helpless Orphans in the dispensation of the Divine Will left to deplore a father's loss. For poignant affliction, happy for the unfortunate, Heaven still provides by bestowing its bounties upon some among the many, who by the most delightful application give testimony, that all Mankind are not insensible of what they owe to Providence, and when distress like this presents her claim to sensibility, generously step forward to discharge the debt.

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Citation details

'Stubbs, William (1767–1805)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/stubbs-william-17189/text28989, accessed 22 August 2018.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2018

Life Summary [details]

Birth

1767
London, Middlesex, England

Death

29 May 1805
Hawkesbury, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death

drowned

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