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Daley, William Johnston (1850–1902)

It is our sad duty today to have to record the passing away of Mr William Johnston Daley, whose death, occurring in the prime of life, has occasioned widespread profound sorrow and regret, not merely amongst those with whom he had been intimately acquainted, but with those who made his acquaintance in the casual walks of life. He died at his residence, Kincaid-street, at a quarter-past three on Tuesday morning, surrounded by the members of his family. The deceased gentleman than whom, perhaps, no one was more respected locally, first contracted typhoid fever about five weeks ago, and with that disregard of apparently trivial matters to which many people are prone, neglected to secure medical attendance, and it was not until he had developed a severe cold that Dr C. F. Warren was called in. Recognising the serious nature of the case, Dr Warren was constantly in attendance, but, despite his unremitting efforts, phlelitis supervened on the typhoid. Then came pneumonia, and Mr Daley rapidly succumbed, and passed away as stated. Deceased, who was 52 years of age, was born at Clarencetown, on the Williams River, on the 7th April 1850, his father being the late James J. Daley, well-known for his connection with the mercantile life of Clarencetown. He was educated at Yass, at the school of the late E. H. Flannery and Rev. Catliffe M.A., leaving there in 1870 for Wagga, where he continuously resided ever since, and where 18 years ago he entered into partnership with Mr. W. B. Morison. Simultaneously with his business enterprise Mr. Daley devoted his leisure hours to the cultivation and encouragement of manly pastimes, entering heartily into the arena of sports, and working with a zealousness that will best be remembered by those who, having taken part in the propagation of sport in Wagga, have since retired to the quieter ranks of life. He was one of the earliest and best rifleman of the district, and to him, many years later, was due the formation of the Wagga Gun Club, of which he was president and secretary. For 15 consecutive years he held the position of clerk of scales in the Murrumbidgee Turf Club, afterwards the Murrumbidgee Race Club. In local coursing he also took a prominent part, having been president and slip steward of the club for several years. Whilst giving so much attention to sport, he was in no way neglectful of the duties of citizenship, and in addition to taking a prominent part in all matters affecting the welfare of the town and district he found time to devote to friendly societies, and took prominent positions in the local branches of the Masonic Lodge and M.U. Oddfellows. Twenty-five years ago he joined the M.U. and from 1877 to 1882 held office as secretary. In October 1878, he was initiated to the Masonic Lodge, acted for 15 years as secretary, was Worshipful Master on several occasion, and also held other offices. In all positions he threw into his labour an apparently untiring energy, proving himself a highly capable and efficient officer, and winning the highest encomiums from his fellow members, whose remembrance of his sterling worth resulted in the sad scene at the graveside yesterday. Mr. Daley married at the age of 23, choosing in 1873 as his partner in life, Ellena, second daughter of the late James Inglis, sheriff’s officer at Wagga. In April, four years ago, he started business for himself in Fitzmaurice Street, which he carried on until overcome by sickness. During his earlier years of residence in Wagga he acted as Borough auditor, and was one of the Commons Trustees for three years. Testimony to the profound regret which marked his death and the esteem of his extensive circle of friends, was abundantly furnished by the numbers of telegrams and messages of condolence received by his sorrowing family since the morning of his death. Mr Daley’s mother survives him, whilst he leave a widow and five children, viz. Mrs Frank Middleway (Oberon), Miss Ethel Daley, Miss Myra Daley, Mr C. L. W. Daley, Mr S. C. Daley (Temora) and Master O. Daley.

The funeral, which was one of the largest witnessed at Wagga, moved from Kincaid Street at 3 o’clock yesterday afternoon, and consisted of members of Wagga Lodge M.U., I.O.O.F., and the Masonic Lodge, 86 vehicles, and several horsemen. Along the route at intervals the procession was augmented by sundry vehicles, making the number up to nearly 100. At the graveside the scene was a most impressive one, the members of friendly societies all wearing the regalia of their orders. The remains were encased in a beautiful polished silver-mounted cedar coffin, and behind the hearse was a tender, loaded with beautiful floral tributes in the forms of wreaths and crosses, including the emblem of Lodge Harmony, worked in flowers. Prior to the burial service being pronounced by Rev. Charles Bell, the service of the Masonic Order, provided for such sad occasions, was conducted by the Grand-master (Bro. E. Bellair). The ordinary service followed, the remains being laid to rest in the Presbyterian portion of the cemetery. Six Masons acted as pall-bearers. Wreaths and crosses were received from the following: Lodge Harmony, M. R. Club, Wagga Gun and Coursing Club, Mr and Mrs Daley (Balmoral), Mr H.M. Baylis, Mrs J. Greenfield, Mr and Mrs S. Warran, Mr and Mrs W. Warran, Mr and Mrs C. Douglas, Mr E. Bellair, Mrs Horsley, Mr and Mrs A.G. Williams, Mr and Mrs G. Osmond, Mr and Mrs Mouritz, Mr and Mrs C. Evans, Mr and Mrs R. G. Smith, Mr and Mrs Heath, Mr and Mrs Seymour, Mr and Mrs G.H. Graham, Mr and Mrs J. Ferguson, Miss Lakeman, Mr and Mrs R. H. Blamey, Mr and Mrs McLean, Misses Mary and Alice McLean, Mr and Mrs W. J. Blake, Mr and Mrs R. S. Heydon, Mrs V. Williams, Mr and Mrs Andison, Mr and Mrs Cameron, Miss Longmore, Mrs G. Bridle, Mr and Mrs J. D. Norman, Mr and Mrs R. J. Brunskill, Mrs Vincent and family, Mr and Mrs Lewis, Mr and Mrs C. H. Thompson, Mr and Mrs J. Carmody, Mr and Mrs R. Dunn, sen., and family, Mr and Mrs J. Nash and family, Mr A. McKay, Mr and Mrs W. Hopper, Mr and Mrs L. A. Fosbery, Mrs Copland, Mr and Mrs W. Dunn, Mrs R. Roulston, Mr and Mrs Eyles, Palazzi family, Mrs E. Bannatyne, and Mrs Rendall and Miss M. Rosenberg. The funeral arrangements were carried out by Mr J. McIntosh.

Original publication

Citation details

'Daley, William Johnston (1850–1902)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 19 January 2022.

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