- Published: 01 September 2009 01 September 2009
David and Rachel Nunn, from Suffolk to Queensland
This section focuses on David and Rachel Nunn's 12 children (see below)
David Nunn (born 15 Mar 1827 at Chevington, Suffolk, England, UK, died (10 Jan 1900 Ipswich, Queensland, Australia) moved to Australia in 1858 with his wife Rachel and son Elisha.
An obituary published in The Queensland Times said he had been ailing for several months before his passing.
Interestingly, his birth date was given as 5 Mar 1826 but it was 15 Mar 1827. Every record (baptism, census, etc) points to him being born in 1827, so the discrepancy is unexplained.
Often people "got" their age wrong and even the year of birth; sometimes deliberately.
As they established their property at Dinmore (Hazelwood Farm, or Nunns Paddock), David and Rachel Nunn became very much part of the growing community.
The Nunns set up an area on their land for cricket and soccer matches which made their location a focal point for social gatherings.
The first mention of such an occasion was a cricket match in 1885.
Several of David and Rachel Nunn's sons were proficient cricketers and I've detailed much more about the Whitwood team elsewhere.
How James Ivory viewed David Nunn
But there were disputes of course, the most public being with major landowner James Ivory who by 1879 owned 18,000 acres around Bundamba. He grew sugar cane and invested in the cotton boom.
He previously bought the Bremer Mills property in 1868 and owned Eskdale (Esk) in 1843.
A number of his diaries are held at the Mitchell Library, Sydney, and have been transcribed by Picture Ipswich.
In them, Ivory first makes mention of his neighbour David Nunn in October 1877:
It seems that Nunn (my neighbour) is making use of one of my paddocks without leave, they are a grasping unprincipled set.
In November 1878, another entry:
Mrs Nunn paid her rent for Campbell's paddock one pound asked to be allowed to cut Wattles, but I said no.
Nunn called & told me Kingston had worried a 2 year Filly & a horse of his, & wished to know if I could go halves in the damage done estimated at 20 pounds. I said I thought that I should claim damages for his horse stock being there without authority, as I only rented the paddock for horned cattle, & that no horse stock was to be placed there.
Summons from Nunn for 15 pounds damages by Kingston, can't at all see his claim.
6 January 1879:
Sent Winslow & Bransom to see the worried mare & horse at Nunn's, Filly nothing the worse, horse belonged to some stranger on agistment & not there. Mare a Filly not worth at most over 10 pounds.
Gained the Entire case though Mrs Nunn perjured herself, but we squeezed the point we wished out of her at last, but Captain Townley somehow did not allow me costs, though he might evidently have seen that it was on a try on & unfair case to bring against me, & though winning the case I lost 4 pounds nine shillings in expenses, however the Nunn's have made a loss also.
There was a great laugh in Court when Nunn was asked to state what I said to him when he called about the horses, "one thing he said, when I asked him what I was to do with the horse if they died, why! Bury them of course." I said this as the fellow was pestering me & keeping on asking questions on a matter which was caused by his own improper act. The case was badly reported in both Ipswich papers. Mrs Nunn swore she never knew that there was an Entire in my paddock though her husband did, her son did, she said she did to me, & how by any possibility such a observant woman passing often through the Entire's paddock did no see him, plainly shews that perjury was nothing to her.
Find that Nunn or R Seymour have cut down posts & slip rails out of spite, at road between Nunn's & my Campbell's paddock.
After justice, or after cash?
Bearing in mind the issues between Ivory and the Nunn family, it all seems a little petty but, to be frank, it seems my great-great grandfather thought he could get a few pounds out of his rich neighbour.
However, it all came unstuck when he took it to court. And, as Ivory pointed out, David Nunn came out of it much better than he probably deserved to.
It was, as Ivory said, a try-on. Here's a report of the court case.
It also should be pointed out that this was not the first action between the two protagonists as, in 1874, Nunn and Ivory were in court on a matter of excessive damages, a case that Ivory won.
It was a petty matter regarding straying stock and an impoundment fee. Read a report of that case.
Following are details of David and Rachel's children:
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