Western Crossings Publications

History Magazine – Western Crossings Issue


The RAHS has published a special edition of its quarterly magazine History in September 2013 that honours the Bicentenary celebrations of the 1813 Blue Mountains crossing by Blaxland, Lawson and Wentworth. The events of the year remind us that commemorations are opportunities to re-examine the past and our understanding of its significance. The special edition includes reports on projects funded by the RAHS as well as a Blue Mountains theme to some of our regular articles. It aims to preserve the memories of Bicentenary events and projects as well as provide an inspiration to future celebrations just like the Frank Walker (1861-1948) Crossing Collections.

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1813 Blue Mountains Crossing Convict Identified: Samuel Fairs – An Extraordinary Life

Senior Vice President of the Royal Australian Historical Society, Christine Yeats, recently uncovered the identification of one of the convicts who accompanied Gregory Blaxland, William Lawson and William Charles Wentworth on their crossing of the Blue Mountains in 1813. We now know that Samuel returned to England and married Mary Ann Garrod at St Mathews, Ipswich in Suffolk on 7 August 1849. Samuel and his wife returned to the Australian colonies, this time settling in Hobart, Tasmania, where his will was drawn up in 26 June 1858. The ‘Mr and Mrs Fares’ who arrived in Tasmania on 29 September 1856 on the Antipodes are probably Samuel and Mary Ann. Samuel ended his days in Tasmania, dying in Hobart in 1867 when he was 80 years of age. He left behind his wife and one year old son – Samuel James who later returned to England with his mother.The following article, which provides details on the previously unidentified convict, Samuel Fairs, appeared in the March 2013 edition of History Magazine.  You can download the full article below.

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