TOWNS, Robert (c. 1794-1873)


TOWNS, Robert (c. 1794-1873)
businessman, pastoralist, and founder of Townsville
was born at Long Horseley, Northumberland, England, on 10 November 1794. This is the date usually given, and it agrees with his death notice in the Sydney Morning Herald of 12 April 1873 which stated that he was then in his seventy-ninth year. The date given by the Australian Encyclopaedia, 1791, appears however, to be more likely, as after being educated at a village school Towns went to sea, was a mate in 1811, and a master in the following year. In 1813 he was captain of a brig in the Mediterranean, and in 1827 he made his first voyage to Australia as captain of The Brothers. In 1833 he married the sister of W. C. Wentworth (q.v.), and in 1842 established a mercantile and shipping business at Sydney. He afterwards bought station properties in Queensland, and about 1860 or a little later began growing cotton, employing South Sea islanders to do the cultivation and picking. Many attempts had been made to grow cotton in Australia before this time, but Towns was the first to do so on a large scale. Realizing that a port was needed on the Queensland coast north of Bowen, Towns arranged for explorations to be made from his stations, a suitable site was found at Cleveland Bay, and on to October 1865 it was gazetted as a port of entry and named Townsville. Working practically until the end Towns died at Sydney on 11 April 1873. He had been a member of the legislative council from 1856, and, although he did not take a leading part in politics, his advice was much sought in matters affecting business. A shrewd, generous, active, and independent man, Towns in his time was one of the leading citizens of Sydney, always interested in anything that would be for the good of the colony.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 12 April 1873; J. H. Heaton, Australian Dictionary of Dates; P. Mennell, Dictionary of Australasian Biography; E. Palmer, Early Days in North Queensland, p. 150; Jubilee History of Queensland, p. 180.

Dictionary of Australian Biography by PERCIVAL SERLE. . 1949.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Towns — /taʊnz/ (say townz) noun 1. George, 1869–1961, Australian world professional sculling champion 1902–05 and 1906–07. 2. Robert, 1794–1873, Australian merchant and politician, born in England; established Townsville as a port …   Australian English dictionary

  • Robert Towns — (c. 1794 April 11 1873) was an Australian businessman, pastoralist, and founder of Townsville.Towns was born at Long Horsey, Northumberland, England, on 10 November 1794. This is the date usually given, and it agrees with his death notice in the… …   Wikipedia

  • Robert Hoddle — (20 April 1794 ndash; 24 October 1881) was a surveyor of Port Phillip in the 1830s, and the creator of the Hoddle Grid in central Melbourne.Early lifeHoddle was born in Westminster, London, the son of a clerk of the Bank of England. He became a… …   Wikipedia

  • 1794 — Year 1794 (MDCCXCIV) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Saturday of the 11 day slower Julian calendar). Events of 1794 January June * February 4… …   Wikipedia

  • Liste des abréviations d'auteur en taxinomie végétale — Cette liste ne doit pas être modifiée. Attention, si vous souhaitez ajouter une nouvelle entrée, faites le sur cette autre page à partir de laquelle cette liste est mise à jour automatiquement. Cette liste est triée par ordre alphabétique des… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Liste Des Abréviations D'auteur En Taxinomie Végétale —  Cette liste ne doit pas être modifiée. Attention, si vous souhaitez ajouter une nouvelle entrée, faites le sur cette autre page à partir de laquelle cette liste est mise à jour automatiquement. Cette liste est triée par ordre alphabétique… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Liste Des Abréviations D'auteur En Taxinomie Végétale/Liste Classée Par Patronyme —  Cette liste ne doit pas être modifiée. Attention, si vous souhaitez ajouter une nouvelle entrée, cliquez ici. Cette liste est triée par ordre alphabétique des patronymes. Vous pouvez consulter la même liste classée par ordre alphabétique… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Liste des abréviations botaniques — Liste des abréviations d auteur en taxinomie végétale  Cette liste ne doit pas être modifiée. Attention, si vous souhaitez ajouter une nouvelle entrée, faites le sur cette autre page à partir de laquelle cette liste est mise à jour… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Liste des abréviations utilisées dans les sciences naturelles — Liste des abréviations d auteur en taxinomie végétale  Cette liste ne doit pas être modifiée. Attention, si vous souhaitez ajouter une nouvelle entrée, faites le sur cette autre page à partir de laquelle cette liste est mise à jour… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Liste des botanistes par abréviation — Liste des abréviations d auteur en taxinomie végétale  Cette liste ne doit pas être modifiée. Attention, si vous souhaitez ajouter une nouvelle entrée, faites le sur cette autre page à partir de laquelle cette liste est mise à jour… …   Wikipédia en Français


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.