Beddome, Robert Winter

Date of Birth/Death:


Farmer, post-master, special land agent and later author.

Robert Winter Beddome was born on 17 Nov 1816 in Romsey, Hampshire, England. His parents were John Reynolds Beddome (1787-1859) and Rebecca (nee Winter) (1787-1821) who were both resident in England for their entire lives. His maternal grandfather was the Rev. Robert Winter D.D., a Methodist clergyman. Robert had 3 sisters – Louisa (1813-1815), Marianne (1825-1912) who emigrated to Canada, and Fanny (1819-1852) who was born in England and emigrated to South Australia in 1851 with her husband Joseph Bompas.

Robert Winter Beddome, aged 23 years, arrived in Port Adelaide aboard the barque Anna Robertson on 20 September 1839 from London via Gravesend under the command of Captain Augustus Munro carrying cargo and 111 passengers. Robert W. Beddome was resident in Willunga for a period around 1841 according to the South Australian Census (1841). He appears to have returned to England where he married Mary Ann Kingham (1819 – 1899) at St. Clement Danes, Middlesex, England on 27 March 1843. He returned with his new wife to South Australia arriving on 12 September 1843 in Intermediate class aboard Madras from London and Plymouth. He worked as a farmer, post-master and special land agent. He was resident in Currency Creek before 1845 and he remained there until at least 1857 as five of his six children were born at Currency Creek:

  • Mary Ann Fanny (1844-1920)
  • John Winter (1846-1934) married Fanny Louisa Buttfield (1853-1926) on 19 October 1884 at Blinman SA
  • Sarah (1849-1911) married Thomas Coombe (1847-1925) on 18 December 1872 at Adelaide
  • George Kingham (1852-1923) married Emily Bates in 1877 in Victoria
  • Martha Ann (1855-1935) married William Henry Cox at the residence of R.W. Beddome, Adelaide in 1875
  • Robert Winter (1857-1934) married Elizabeth Sillett (1856- )
  • Marianne Sophia (1861-1862) born and died in Willunga, died age 14 months

In 1850 he was involved in the establishment of the River Murray League and he signed the petition in support of the establishment of the Goolwa railway. Robert W. Beddome appears to have been resident in Willunga again from about March 1861 until at least September 1863. James Brown(e) leased lot 82 (now 10 Bishop Street) in the township of Willunga (Lease No. 1783 dated 1 March 1861) to storekeeper Robert Winter Beddome, late of Currency Creek, for a three year term effective from 1 March 1861 for £50 per annum payable quarterly. By 1861 Robert was resident in Willunga and he put his land at Currency Creek up for sale in June/July 1861. His youngest daughter Marianne Sophia was born and died aged 14 months in Willunga and is buried (grave 42) in the Uniting Church [Wesleyan Methodist] Cemetery).

During 1862 several lectures for the benefit of the Mechanic’s Institute were given in a building that was described as “Mr. Beddome’s News and Lecture Room” including Mr. George French Angas on “The Amazulu Kaffirs” in January, Mr. Townsend, M.P. on “Lights and shadows of London life” in February and Dr. MacIntosh on “Recollections of the East” in May. The last trace was in September 1863 when Beddome’s Reading Room was the site of an event following the laying of the Foundation Stone of the Oddfellows Hall.

In the 1870s and 1880s Robert Winter Beddome wrote four literary works mainly of poetry and songs (The Adelaide of the Future, 1873; A Group of Songs for the Local Forces (Military and Naval) of the Australian Provinces, 1878; Appeal for union! To the British Australasian colonies, within, or near to Australia, 1887; Ode to the river Murray, 1887).

Robert Winter Beddome, aged 73 years died on 14 February 1889 at his residence in Howard Street, Rosaville [Beulah Park], Adelaide, South Australia and he is buried in West Terrace Cemetery. His wife Mary Ann died 15 December 1899 at Roseville, and is buried with him.


The National Archives (United Kingdom); Kew, Surrey, England; General Register Office: Registers of Births, Marriages and Deaths surrendered to the Non-parochial Registers Commissions of 1837 and 1857; Class Number: RG 4;; Class Number: Rg 4; Piece Number: 4663, per Ancestry

City of Westminster Archives Centre; London, England; Westminster Church of England Parish Registers; Reference: STC/PR/5/19 per Ancestry

Passengers in History Database – South Australian Maritime Museum,

Statton J. (ed) 1986. Biographical Index of South Australians 1836-1885. Volume 1, Adelaide

South Australia Census 1841, Index for GRG 24/13 Census Returns – 1841 Census

FamilySearch – Returns of Census compiled in January 1841 GRG24/13

Ratepayer List Willunga & Aldinga Councils 1850-1888, Willunga National Trust Branch

Family Histories. C. Manuscript folder, Willunga National Trust Branch), Blue folder 40-,

Genealogy SA,

1844 ‘SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE.’, Adelaide Observer, 13 January, p. 1. , [Re lost bullocks at Second Creek]

1849 ‘Advertising’, Adelaide Observer, 14 July, p. 1. , [Re appointment as Post Master]

1850 ‘CROWN LANDS OFFICE,’, Adelaide Times, 18 February, p. 4. , [Re Hundred of Nangkita]

1850 ‘”THE RIVER MURRAY LEAGUE.”‘, Adelaide Observer, 16 March, p. 2. ,

1850 ‘Advertising’, South Australian Register , 16 March, p. 2. , [Re River Murray League]

1863 ‘ODDFELLOWS HALL, WILLUNGA.’, South Australian Register, 8 September, p. 3.,

1889 ‘Obituary.’, Evening Journal15 February, p. 2.,




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