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John Frederick Hawker (1854–1875)

It is with regret that we (Advertiser) record a lamentable and fatal accident which befell Mr. John Hawker, second son of Mr. G. C. Hawker, M.P., on Thursday morning, October 28. He, in company with Mr. A. Musgrave, jun., had ridden in the direction of the Reedbeds, for the purpose of practising a young horse which he intended to run in a steeplechase. Mr. Hawker cleared several fences safely, but coming to a stiff rail, with wires below, the horse struck it with his forelegs and came over on its back, with the rider underneath. The horse's head was so close to the fence that the bit caught in the wires, and the brute struggled violently without being able to rise. Mr. Musgrave with great difficulty freed the horse and got him up, but the rider lay insensible, and evidently much hurt. Drs. Phillips and Clindening were quickly in attendance, but they found life to be extinct. Mr. Hawker's father is in the North, with the Governor, but a telegram was despatched, informing him of the melancholy event, and the Hon. Mr. West-Erskine drove over to the residence of the deceased gentleman's parents, to break the sad news to Mrs. Hawker. At the inquest, which was held at the Newmarket Inn, North Terrace, by Mr. W. Harcus, J.P., on the same day, the Jury found "that the deceased John Hawker came to his death from injuries caused by a horse falling upon him, and that in the opinion of the Jury no blame is attributable to anyone." After the delivery of the verdict the Foreman said—On behalf of the Jury, Mr. Coroner, I beg to say that we cannot separate without expressing our deep sympathy with Mr. and Mrs. Hawker in their deep affliction.

Original publication

Additional Resources

  • inquest, South Australian Advertiser, 29 October 1875, p 7

Citation details

'Hawker, John Frederick (1854–1875)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 13 July 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]




28 October, 1875 (aged ~ 21)
Adelaide, 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.