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George Anstey (1838–1869)

A very sad and fatal accident occurred at our neighboring township of Port Elliot on Wednesday night last about 10 o'clock. Mr. George Anstey, a resident there for some years, was returning home from visiting his friends at Port Victor, and, after spending some time at the Port Elliot Hotel, took his departure homeward about that hour on horseback. Not having proceeded more than 100 yards, he was heard to fall with great violence. Mr. Towler, the landlord of the hotel, had him conveyed immediately to the inn with the greatest care and promptitude, and instantly dispatched a messenger to Dr. Motherall at Port Victor, conveying intelligence at the same time to Mr. Anstey's friends residing there of the nature of the accident, so far as was then ascertained. No effort was wanting on the part of Mr. Towler, Police-trooper Simpson, Mr. Barnett (chemist), and the neighbors to minister to the necessities of the case, but it speedily became apparent no human aid was availing, the nature of the injuries being of such a brainial character as to afford no ground of hope whatever, and after lingering in total unconsciousness for two hours he died. An inquest was held early on the following day, when a verdict of accidental death was returned, with a rider. The proximate cause of death was the stirrup-leather slipping off the saddle bow, for it was found on the ground some yards from the scene of the accident. This seems a reasonable hypothesis, for it is said deceased started away at a smart canter. The sudden withdrawal of the support on which he rested could not but be calculated to produce serious consequences. This melancholy termination of a useful life has produced a gloom over society, for, notwithstanding this being the only fatal accident, yet it only numbers one in the long chronicles of serious casualties which have occurred during the last month in connection with horse-riding or driving. The deceased gentleman was only in his 32nd year; a large portion of his life, I have understood, he spent in the colonies. Mr. Anstey was born at Aigley House, Devonshire, and is the only surviving son of the late Rev. George Anstey, M.A. The deceased was educated at Cheltenham College, and during the last two years he devoted himself to the conduct of a seminary at Port Elliot for the tuition of youths somewhat advanced in the earlier stages of scholastic pursuits, and preparatory to their fitness for the duties of life. The deceased was married to the youngest daughter of the late Captain Leewerthy, R.N., for whom and her family much sympathy is felt. The funeral took place yesterday, and was respectably attended. The Rev. Mr. Howell, of St. Jude's, Port Elliot, officiated at the grave.

Original publication

Additional Resources

  • inquest, South Australian Register, 13 November 1869, p 3

Citation details

'Anstey, George (1838–1869)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 27 February 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]


Devon, England


10 November, 1869 (aged ~ 31)
Port Elliot, South Australia, Australia

Cause of Death

horse riding accident

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.