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Kezia Holmes (1827–1917)

There passed away on Wednesday, August 29, a grand old woman — one of the links that bound the present with the past in the person of Mrs. Kezia Holmes, relict of the late James Holmes. Coincidently, it might be remarked, she died on the tenth anniversary of her husband's death, for the late Mr. Holmes passed away on Thursday, August 29, 1907. She had reached the ripe age of 90 years, and her late husband was 81 when he died. Born in Windsor in 1827 – in the house in Fitzgerald-street, now occupied by Mr. E. J. Cupitt – the late Mrs. Holmes was a daughter of Charles and Hannah Beazley. The late Charles Beazley was, in the early days of colonial settle-ment, a trader on the Hawkesbury River, later on keeping a hotel in the house just mentioned. The site where the Municipal Council's pumping station stands was known as Beazley's wharf. The subject of this notice was perhaps best known to the people of the Hawkesbury district as hostess of the Fitzroy Hotel, of which her late husband was the host from 1860 until 1879. There she was the friend of all and her loveable and charitable disposition attracted a very large circle of personal friends. No one knows the amount of benevolence she dispensed – it was her nature to care for the sick and distressed — and scores of people whom she had relieved blessed her for her goodness. Always outspoken, always truthful and sincere, she gained the respect and admiration of all who knew her. No person had a higher conception of honor than the late Mrs. Holmes, and this attribute was inherited by all her children. She retained her mental faculties almost to the last, though during the past few years she was gradually becoming enfeebled in physical strength. She had a wonderful memory, and had a vivid recollection of many of the stirring scenes that were enacted in Windsor in the late 'thirties,' and onward. With the exception of about three years, she lived the whole of her life in Windsor. When Mr. Holmes retired from business in 1879 they went to reside for a couple of years on the Blue Mountains, and afterwards spent a year in Sydney. Coming back to Windsor, they took up their abode in Glebe street, called their home 'Fitzroy Cottage' and it was there that both of them answered the last call. The late Mr. Holmes was a man of remarkable business acumen, and acquired a competence, purchasing some rich farm land in the district, which still remains in the family. Of a family of 10 children, the eldest girl died in childhood. Three others, viz., Henry, Laura Kate (Mrs. J. C. Byram) and Alfred, predeceased their mother within the last 12 months. The last named died only a week or two before her, and it was deemed best not to acquaint her of his death. The surviving children are: Mrs. Charles Manning (Undercliff), William Clarence (Perth, W.A.), Edward John (Brisbane, Q), Richard John (Sackville North), James Ernest (Epping), and Mrs. R. Matthews (Guildford). The late Mrs. Holmes possessed a remarkable constitution. Medical men who attended her say that she had a wonderful heart, which was strong and healthy till the last, when she died peacefully from sheer exhaustion of the system. The funeral took place on Thursday afternoon, August 30, the remains being laid to rest beside those of her late husband, in St. Matthew's C.E. cemetery, in the presence of a large concourse of mourners. The pall-bearers were: Messrs. A. S. Berckelman, P. Beveridge. G. Marden, S. Gow, G. Boyd, and Rev. Jas. Steele. During the service in the church Rev. N. Jenkyn paid a tribute to the memory of the deceased lady, and spoke of her beautiful character, and her strong attachment to her family. The funeral march was played by Miss Mattie Eather, and a favorite hymn of the deceased, 'Abide with Me,' was sung. Mr. Chandler had charge of the mortuary arrangements.

Original publication

Citation details

'Holmes, Kezia (1827–1917)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 31 May 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Beasley, Kezia

11 May, 1827
Windsor, New South Wales, Australia


29 August, 1917 (aged 90)
Windsor, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death

general debility

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.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.