James Squire

James Squire

Infobox Person
name =James Squire
caption =Signature of James Squire
birth_date =1754
birth_place =Kingston Upon Thames, England
death_date =16 May 1822
death_place =Kissing Point, Sydney, Australia
death_cause =From illness over 3 months
residence =Kissing Point
other_names =James Squires
occupation =Primarily a Brewer, but also a: Farmer; Constable; Butcher; Baker; and Banker
spouse =Martha Quinton. Left in England, when Squire was transported.
partner =(1st) Mary Spencer (Convict) (1789- "circa." 1791); (2nd) Elizabeth Mason (Convict servant in his service) ("circa." 1791-????); and (3rd) Lucy Vaughan-Harding.
children =John, Sarah and James Squire, to Martha; Francis Spencer to Mary; and Priscilla, Martha, Sarah, James, Timothy, Elizabeth and Mary Ann to Elizabeth.
parents =Timothy Squires & Mary Wells


James Squire (1754 - 16 May 1822), a convict transported to Australia, is credited with the first successful cultivation of hops in Australia at the turn of the 19th century, and is also considered to have founded Australia's first commercial brewery in 1798, though John Boston appears to have opened a brewery making a form of corn beer two years earlier [ [http://www.adb.online.anu.edu.au/biogs/A010118b.htm Boston, John ( - 1804) Biographical Entry - Australian Dictionary of Biography Online] ] .

Squire was convicted of stealing in 1785 and was transported to Australia as a convict on the First Fleet in 1788. Squire ran a number of successful ventures during his life, including a farm, a popular tavern called "The Malting Shovel", a bakery, a butcher shop and a credit union. Unusually for an ex-convict, he also became a town constable in the East Farms district of Sydney. As a testament to the rise of position in society (from "shame to fame"), his death in 1822, was marked with the biggest funeral ever held in the colony.

Early years


James Squire was baptised on December 18 1754 in Kingston Upon Thames. Squire's parents were well known gypsies, Timothy Squires and Mary Wells, who were married on December 8 1752 in West Molesey, Surrey. Their families had been embroiled in a dramatic incident (The Canning Affair) which polarized England in 1754, the year of Squire's birth [http://people.smartchat.net.au/~condliffe/pages/profile.html North Coast Chapter, Fellowship of First Fleeters] ] .

Early Crimes

In 1774, when Squire fled a ransacked house, he ran straight into several members of the local constabulary and was arrested for highway robbery. This was actually a lucky break. By escaping through the front door, which opened onto the highway, he avoided a more serious charge of stealing. Although Squire was sentenced to be transported to America for 7 years, he elected to serve in the army and returned to Kingston as a free man within 4 years [http://www.malt-shovel.com.au/ James Squire - the remarkable life of the father of Australian brewing] ] .He then managed a hotel in Heathen Street, Kingston. This hotel was a popular haunt for highway robbers and smugglers.

His next attempt at a life of crime was similarly successful. Squire stole 5 hens and 4 cocks and diverse other goods and chattels from John Stacey's yard, just when the British Government needed people for the transported convict program. On 11 April 1785, he was sentenced to join the First Fleet at the General Sessions of the Peace for the Town & Hundred of Kingston Upon Thames, England. Squire was sentenced to 7 years transportation, beyond the seas.

Wife, Mistresses & children

In 1776 Squire married his local sweetheart, Martha Quinton. Martha was baptised on 15 Nov 1754 in Bishops Waltham, Hampshire, England. Her parents were John Quinton and Elizabeth Harris. Martha bore 3 children to James — John (born 1778 in Kingston-Upon-Thames, Surrey and baptised on 16 August 1778), Sarah (born 1780 in Kingston Upon Thames and baptised on 23 August 1780 [http://people.smartchat.net.au/~condliffe/pages/profile_01.html North Coast Chapter of the, Fellowship of First Fleeters] Family Group Sheet James Squire] ) and James (born 2 May 1783 in Kingston Upon Thames and baptised on 2 May 1783). When James was convicted and transported to Australia as a convict, it was very rare for convicts or their family to attain permission, or even afford to join them in their exile, so Martha and his children were left in England to fend for themselves.

While Squire was separated from his wife and family he met Mary Spencer. Mary was born in 1768 in the town of Formby. She was tried at Wigan, Lancashire on 9 October 1786 for with theft at Crosby of one cotton and one black silk handkerchief, a green quilted tammy (glazed material partly wool) petticoat and a black silk cloak, of unknown value. She was sentenced to transportation for 5 years [Note: The 5 year term was a clerical error in Mary Spencer’s favour. It should have been 7 years.] and left England on the "Prince of Wales" aged about 19 at that time (May 1787). She had no occupation recorded. Mary gave birth to a son, who was named Francis (Born and baptised on August 1 1790 at Norfolk Island). He died September 20 1851 in Melbourne, Victoria). Unable to care for Francis, James enrolled him in the British Army at just 15 months of age. Francis was enlisted into the NSW Corps as a drummer, starting on the payroll on his 7th birthday.

In 1791 James began a relationship with Elizabeth Mason (born 1759 in London, baptised February 20 1759 in London, died June 10 1809 in Sydney), who was his live-in convict servant [ [http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/ State Records of New South Wales] List of persons employing female servants, dated October 7 1798] . James and Elizabeth had 7 children together — Priscilla (born May 29 1792 in Sydney, died 1862 in Ryde), Martha (born March 2 1794 at Kissing Point, died November 15 1814 at Concord, Sydney), Sarah (born August 7 1795 at Kissing Point, baptised March 13 1796 at St. John's C of E, Parramatta, died May 23 1877 at Kingston, now a part of Newtown), James (born November 16 1797 at Kissing Point, died July 3 1826 at Kissing Point and is buried in Devonshire Street Cemetery), Timothy (born 1799 at Kissing Point, died October 7 1814), Elizabeth (born May 16 1800 at Kissing Point, died May 12 1830 in Sydney) and Mary Ann (born August 1 1804 in Kissing Point, died September 1 1850 in Ryde).

James then maintained an affair over a number of years with his live-in housekeeper Lucy Harding ("aka". Lucy Vaughan-Harding). He eventually moved into her private residence on Castlereagh Street, Sydney in 1816.

Convict years

The First Fleet

In 1787 James was released from Southwark gaol to voyage to the British penal colony in Australia in April 1787 [ [http://www.malt-shovel.com.au/JamesSquire.asp James Squire - the remarkable life of the father of Australian brewing] ] [ [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
] [ [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
] . The document was signed by Evan Nepean on 10 March 1787. Though James began his journey on the Friendship, he transferred himself to the Charlotte in a reshuffle of the women passengers [Watkin Tench's Journal. [http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/3534 A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson by Watkin Tench] . Later published as the book '1788'] . On January 18 1788, the First Fleet arrived at Botany Bay, Australia. The openness of this bay, and the dampness of the soil, by which the people would probably be rendered unhealthy, had already determined the Governor to seek another situation. He resolved, therefore, to examine Port Jackson, a bay mentioned by Captain James Cook as immediately to the north of this. There he hoped to find, not only a better harbour, but a fitter place for the establishment of his new government [ [http://www.gutenberg.org/files/15100/15100-8.txt The Voyage Of Governor Phillip To Botany Bay by Arthur Phillip] ] . The first fleet then moved to Port Jackson by 26 January.

In Sydney town

On 5 March 1789, James gave evidence on the theft by 2 fellow convicts of 6 cabbages. The thieves received 50 lashes each [From the Journal of the Royal Australian Historical Society Vol.82 part 2, pp. 153-167, by David Hughes. Titled: Australia's first brewer.] . James was then hauled before the magistrate, charged with stealing 'medicines' from the hospital stores where he worked at Port Jackson. These medicines were, in fact, 1 pound of pepper (or paper) and horehound (a herb that imitates the tangy flavour of hops), belonging to Surgeon John White. Though James claimed the stolen horehound was for his pregnant girlfriend, he later revealed at the Bigge inquiry that he began brewing beer on his arrival to Australia, which he sold for 4d [4 pence] per quart. Indeed, James was brewing beer for the personal consumption of Lieutenant Francis Grose and William Paterson over that time. Perhaps that explains Squire's lenient sentence when petty theft was often punished with execution. His sentence of 14 November 1789 read:

"one hundred and fifty (lashes of the whip) now, and the remainder when able to bear it".
August 19 1791, James and another man were fined ₤5 [5 pounds] each for buying the necessaries of a private. They both protested of not knowing it was a crime!

Post convict years

Land Grant

Somewhere between 1790 and 1792 James' sentence had expired and he was now a free man [Entry for 22 July 1795 in the return of Grants of Land, 1792—95, ML, Bonwick Transcripts, Box 88, p. 13, says Squire was a ‘Convict whose sentence is expired’.] and he was able to start his life over again. On emancipation James was granted convert|30|acre|km2|2|abbr=on at Eastern Farms (Kissing Point) on 22 July 1795 [ [http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/indexes/colsec/s/F53c_so-sti-08.htm Colonial Secretary Index, 1788-1825] , On list of all grants and leases of land registered in the Colonial Secretary's Office (Fiche 3267; 9/2731 p.54)] , and he noticed other emancipists had not claimed the nearby land. Displaying his resourcefulness, James marched them into the Colonial Secretary's office (position held by David Collins) to claim their land grants, and then purchased each property for 1 shilling.

James was an extremely enterprising man and by mid 1800 he had 10 sheep, 18 pigs and 35 goats. convert|5|acre|km2|2|abbr=on were sown in wheat & another convert|45|acre|km2|2|abbr=on ready for planting maize and barley. Two years later he owned convert|291|acre|km2|2|abbr=on with convert|120|acre|km2|2|abbr=on cleared and convert|28|acre|km2|2|abbr=on in grain. His household comprised of himself an Elizabeth Mason, 6 children, 4 free men and 2 government servants and was self supporting.

On January 3 1813 an Aboriginal named Bennelong was buried on the grounds of Squire's property, where he had often wandered. James had erected a plaque to commemorate his dear friend. James also had Bennelong's wife, Barangaroo buried alongside Bennelong when she died, years later.

On May 3 1817, James advertised his estate for sale in the "Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser". This may have been instigated because he had moved in with his mistress, Lucy Harding, in Sydney. Evidence shows that the estate did not sell as James was the name of the licensee until at least 1822.

Hops and brewing

James stated at the Bigge inquiry into New South Wales and Van Diemen's Land in 1820 that he had been brewing for 30 years and that he made it from hops he got from the Daedalus [From the Journal of the Royal Australian Historical Society Vol.82 part 2, by David Hughes. Titled: Australia's first brewer.] [ [http://freepages.history.rootsweb.com/~ausnavy/ships_rn.htm HMS Daedalus first arrived in Sydney in 1793] ] . This statement highlights the fact that James had been brewing beer since 1790, which makes this the first evidence of brewing beer with hops in Australia.

1802 saw the revelation that the British Army was trafficking rum. This created an uproar in the fledgling colony and Governor King was gravely concerned about the corruption spread by rum, so he began to officially endorse the brewing of beer. English hops and brewing equipment were regularly transported on convict ships at the government's expense; in fact, part of H.M.S. Porpoise's botanical cargo was hops [ [http://www.sl.nsw.gov.au/banks/series_19/19_view.cfm Correspondence concerning the outfitting and equipping of H.M.S. Porpoise for a voyage to New South Wales, 1797-1801] ] [ [http://image.sl.nsw.gov.au/banks/810030.jpgPlants List on board the H.M.S. Porpoise] ] [ [http://image.sl.nsw.gov.au/banks/810035.jpgA List of the Culinary & Medicinal Plants Vineyard Vines Fruits &c &c Planted in 18 Boxes & now Remaining at the Royal Gardens at Kew...'] , 11 October 1798] [ [http://image.sl.nsw.gov.au/banks/810122.jpgA plan of where the seed boxes were located on the Porpoise] ] . There were 3 parties that were the most likely recipients of the shipment of hops, those being:
* The Government Gardens;
* John Boston (who was a potential rival for Australia's first brewer); and
* James Squire.

It is unclear what became of the hops on the HMS Porpoise, as there is no evidence of them being propagated within the first two years of its arrival in Sydney, on November 6 1800 [ [http://www.blaxland.com/ozships/ Convictions Australian Shipping] ] [ [http://www.sl.nsw.gov.au/banks/series_19/19_view.cfm Correspondence concerning the outfitting and equipping of HMS Porpoise] for a voyage to New South Wales, 1797-1801. State Library of New South Wales] . Then in 1806, after 3 seasons of toil, James successfully cultivated the first Australian hops.

On Friday, March 11 1806, James Squire attended Government House with 2 bines of hops taken from his own grounds. On a bine from a last year's cutting were numbers of a very fine bunches; and upon a two-year-old cutting the clusters, mostly ripe, were innumerable, in weight supposed to yield at least a pound and a half, and of most exquisite flavour. Governor King was so pleased with the flavour and quality that he

"directed a cow to be given to Mr Squire from the Government herd". [Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser, dated March 16 1806]
By 1806, the Squire estate now stretched across approximately convert|881|acre|km2|2|abbr=on, from the current Gladesville Bridge to the Ryde Rail Bridge and from the harbour to north of Victoria Road.

It is most likely that James' hop growing knowledge broadened with the publishing of an article, in the Sydney Gazette [Sydney Gazette, dated January 20, February 3 and February 10 1805.] called, "Hop Plantation. Culture of Hops in Great Britain". This article ran over 3 issues of the Sydney Gazette and went into great detail as to the process of cultivation of hops.

As the 19th century gained momentum, Squire's enterprises did likewise. After the Rum Rebellion in 1808, James began work as a baker (James had a bakery in Kent Street), and he also often supplied meat to the colony, not to mention his farming duties. He then worked in a credit union style of banking and was widely known for his fair play as a lender and a philanthropist to his poorer neighbours. James was nicknamed the 'Patriarch of Kissing Point'. Colonial artist Joseph Lycett explained,

"Had he not been so generous, James Squire would have been a much wealthier man".
Joseph Lycett also stated that James was
“Universally respected for his amiable and useful qualities as a member of the lower class of settlers...his name will long be pronounced with veneration by the grateful objects of his liberality”.
Despite his previous convict status, James also became a resident district constable [Sydney Gazette. January 20, 1805] . This was due to the number of trespassers on his property and theft of his belongings. The Sydney Gazette is riddled with articles submitted by James, warning others of trespassers and thefts. For example, in the Sydney Gazette on July 3 1803 James submitted a notice of a theft of boat.

The Malting Shovel

James opened the "The Malting Shovel" Tavern on the shores of Parramatta River, in the Eastern Farm district of Kissing Point which is almost halfway between Sydney town and Parramatta. It was the ideal location to entice thirsty passengers from vessels along this busy thoroughfare.Surviving records located in the State Records of New South Wales show that, on September 19 1798, there was a general meeting held at the Judge Advocates office in the presence of Judge Advocate William Balmain. At this meeting, James (among others, including Simeon Lord) obtained the judge's permission to be licensed for the sale of spirituous liquors at "The Malting Shovel". This license cost him a princely sum of ₤5 [http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/ State Records of New South Wales] . Dated: September 19 1798 - Page:92 - Bundle:15 - Reel:655 - On a list of licences granted to sell spirituous liquors] . The licence was renewed for a further ₤5 in September of 1799. Simeon Lord countersigned as surety [ [http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/ State Records of New South Wales] . Dated: September 14 1799 - Page:115 - Bundle:46 - Reel:655 - On a list of people granted licences to sell spirituous liquors] . Licences to brew or sell liquor were required to be renewed every year. Unfortunately a lot of this information is missing, but the Sydney Gazette and the State Records of New South Wales fill in a number of gaps with evidence of licence renewals on the following dates:
* February 26 1809The Sydney Gazette.] ;
* March 16 1811 [ [http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/indexes/colsec/s/F53c_so-sti-08.htm Colonial Secretary Index, 1788-1825] , (Reel 6038; SZ758 p.184)] ;
* April 8 1815;
* February 15 1816 [ [http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/indexes/colsec/s/F53c_so-sti-08.htm Colonial Secretary Index, 1788-1825] Letter to Wentworth re Squire's application for a brewing licence (Reel 6004; 4/3494 p.366)] ;
* February 19 1820;
* February 24 1821; and
* March 22 1822.

Death of James Squire

James Squire died on 16 May 1822. The article from the Sydney Gazette [Sydney Gazette, Dated 24 May 1822.] :

Deaths: — On Thursday evening last, at Kissing Point, after an illness of about 3 months, Mr James Squire, in his 68th year. As one of the primary inhabitants of the Colony, having come hither in the first fleet in 1788, none ever more exerted himself for the benefits of the inhabitants than the deceased. He was the first that brought Hops to any perfection and hence was enabled to brew beer of an excellent quality. "“Squire’s Beer”" was well known. He might for long residence, be styled the "Patriarch of Kissing Point"; as he had lived, where he died, 26 years. The “OLD HANDS [Term used to describe convicts of the first fleet. Generally used by the convicts themselves.] ,” by the frequent visitation of death, are becoming thinned in their ranks; this should lead to reflection, for the day will soon arrive when even those, now living, shall cease to say, "“I came in the first fleet.”"
His death was marked with the biggest funeral ever held in the colony. He was buried at a Devonshire Street Cemetery where Central Station now stands. Since then his remains and headstone were moved to Botany cemetery, though it's too worn to identify. [Researched by Jeremy Ohlback From the Journal of the Royal Australian Historical Society Vol.82 part 2, pp. 153-167, by David Hughes. Titled: Australia's first brewer.] . The headstone inscription is believed to have the following epitaph…
"In Sacred Respect to the Loving Remains of Mr. Jas. Squire, late of Kissing Point who departed this Life May 16th 1822 at the age of 67 years. He arrived in the colony in the First Fleet and by Integrity and Industry acquired and maintained an unsullied reputation. Under his care the HOP PLANT was first Cultivated in this Settlement and the first BREWERY erected which Progressively matured to Perfection. As a Father, Friend and Christian he Lived Respected and Died Lamented [ [http://www.geocities.com/fellowship_of_first_fleeters/stories.html#tff Stories from the Fellowship of the First Fleeters] ] .

James' last will and testament

A transcript of James Squire's [http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/4/47/Last_Will_of_James_Squire.pdf Last will and testament] , dated April 6 1822.

James' legacy

From 1823, Squire's brewery continued to successfully operate under control of his son James, producing about 100 000 gallons a year, until his death in 1826.James Squire's daughter Mary Ann married Thomas Charles Farnell of Kissing Point [ [http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/indexes/colsec/s/F53c_so-sti-08.htm Colonial Secretary Index, 1788-1825] , (Reel 6028; 2/8305 pp.59-62)] on March 30 1824. On June 25 1825, Mary gave birth to James Squire Farnell. In 1828 the brewery was briefly re-opened by his daughter Mary Ann's husband, Thomas Farnell, until his ill-health forced the brewery to close in 1834. In 1877, James' grandson, James Squire Farnell, became the first Australian Premier of New South Wales.

In 1999 Lion Nathan renamed the previously-purchased Hahn Brewery as the "Malt Shovel Brewery", releasing a line of James Squire beers in honour of Australia’s first commercial brewer [ [http://www.lion-nathan.com/Great-Company/About-Us/History.aspx Lion Nathan's History.] ] .



NAME= James Squire
SHORT DESCRIPTION=Australian convict and brewer
PLACE OF BIRTH= Kingston-Upon-Thames, Surrey
DATE OF DEATH=16 May 1822
PLACE OF DEATH= Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

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