Paddy’s Row, Adey Road, Whites Valley

Also known as Adey Road in White’s Valley

In the 19th century the western side of Adey Road (in section 401) between Aldinga Road (now Flour Mill Road) and White’s Valley Road (now Little Road) was commonly known as ‘Paddy’s Row’ because of the number of Irish who lived there.

In 1857 Lewis Fidge had subdivided part of section 401 into 20 allotments that he called ‘the village of Aldinga’ (now Aldinga East). This area was conveniently located next to the sections owned by Samuel White (in White’s Valley) and close to both White’s Flour Mill and Butterworth’s Flour Mill. At least four Irish Catholic labourers and their families lived in “Paddy’s Row” from the late 1850s. They comprised of two pairs of brothers from Kilkenny in Ireland who were related by marriage; the Cantwells and the Hobans. Patrick Cantwell (1819-1881), his younger brother James Cantwell (1831-1905) and their sister Mary Cantwell (1828-1898). Michael Hoban (1826-1860) and his younger brother Daniel Hoban (1833-1879) who married Mary Cantwell at St Joseph’s Catholic Church in Willunga in 1857.

All the families had children (at least twenty-four in total) Daniel Hoban and his wife Mary Cantwell had seven, Michael Hoban and his wife Mary Ann Dwyer had at least four, Patrick Cantwell and his wife Ann Quirk had two surviving daughters and James Cantwell and his wife Mary Nesbitt had eleven including six who were born at Aldinga East between 1858 and 1871. They had all arrived in South Australia between 1855 and 1858 aboard ships from Liverpool (Europa in 1855, Lord Hungerford in 1856 and Utopia in 1858). They all worshipped at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Willunga, some married there, many of their children were baptised there and some were buried in the Church graveyard.

Patrick Cantwell purchased land (lots 13 and 14) in 1865 and later in 1867 another block of land in Adey Road. We know from the rates records that James Cantwell, Daniel and Michael Hoban were all resident for some time in Adey Road, probably firstly renting cottages there and possibly later living in cottages on the land owned by Patrick Cantwell. Both Hoban brothers lived in Paddy’s Row until their early deaths. Michael Hoban died, aged just 33 years, in Feb 1860 leaving his widow Mary Ann with three young children and by June 1860 they had become reliant on Destitute Board rations. Daniel Hoban died in 1879 aged just 44 years but both of their widows continued to live in Adey Road until their deaths in 1900 and 1898 respectively. Patrick Cantwell, too lived in Adey Road until his death, aged 62 years, in 1881 while his brother James moved away purchasing land in Port Willunga in 1866, then lived at Myponga (by about 1873) and on the Yorke Peninsula (by 1879). James was the only one of the four who did not die in Aldinga when he died, aged 81 years, in Mildura, Vic in 1906.


Biographies of Daniel Hoban, Michael Hoban, Patrick Cantwell and James Cantwell are now available at Willunga National Trust.

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