Major Thomas Shuldam O'Halloran, CMG
 
 


1840 - 1843.


Son of Major-General Sir Joseph O’Halloran, G.C.B., Bengal Army, he served in the Indian 1840 Army prior to arriving in Adelaide in 1838 at the age of forty-one years. He settled in O’Halloran Hill, was made a J.P., and the following year was appointed one of the four 1843 Honorary Commissioners who administered the Force.


Major Thomas Shuldham O’Halloran, CGM, first Commissioner of the South Australian Police, whom the suburb O’Halloran Hill (south of Adelaide) is named after, was very much loved and respected by his officers and men.

Major Thomas Shuldham O'Halloran, was a military man through and through, he was also South Australia’s first Police Commissioner, Farmer, Horse Breeder, businessman and Member of the Legislative Council.
By Charlie Tredrea,  

He was the second and eldest surviving son of Major-General Sir Joseph O'Halloran, G.C.B., Bengal Army.   He was born at Berhatnpore, in the East Indies, (in West Bengal, India) on 25th October, 1797.  He was a cadet at the Royal Military College, Marlow, in 1808 and appointed Ensign in the Royal West Middlesex Militia, 1809.  In 1812, the College and students were moved from Marlow to Sandhurst.   In 1813, he was gazetted an Ensign in the 17th Foot, and joined his regiment in 1814, and served with it during the whole of the Nepal War during the years 1814, '15, and '16.   In 1817 he received his Lieutenancy on 28th June, and served during the Deccan War (India) in 1817 and 1818.   Thomas was married on 1st August, 1821, to Miss Ann Goss, of Dawlish, but she sadly died in 1823, in Calcutta, leaving two children, of whom one died in India.

In 1822 our Thomas exchanged from the 17th to the 44th Regiment, which he joined in Calcutta in January, 1823.   In 1824 he was ordered with the left wing of the 44th  Regiment to Chittagong, where he arrived early in June, and was appointed Paymaster, Quartermaster, and Interpreter, so therefore must have spoke the   language well and was kept very busy.  On the 30th  October was appointed Brigade-Major to Brigadier-General Duncan, C.B., who commanded the Sylket division of the army during the Burmese war, and served on his staff until the General’s death in November, 1825.
He received a medal for war service in India for Nepal and Ava.   On 27th April, 1827, O’Halloran purchased his company in the 99th Regiment, then exchanged into the 56th Regiment in 1828.   In 1829 exchanged into the 6th Regiment, and joined his father as Aide-de-Camp, at Sangur, in Central India.   From June, 1830, to January, 1831, he served as Deputy Assistant Quartermaster-General at Sangor, and then in 1834 Thomas was married to Miss Jane Waring, of Newry. 

Thomas retired on half-pay in October, but later in 1837 was placed on full-pay as Captain in the 97th Regiment.   In that year he was sent in command of two companies of his regiment and a troop of the 4th Dragoon Guards to quell the riots in Yorkshire.

In 1838 he retired from the army by the sale of his commission and sailed for South Australia the same year in the Rajahsthan, (was built in 1837 in Bombay using Teak, and was sheathed in yellow metal in 1839.  The owners: Flemming, Port of registry: Glasgow. ) and landed at Glenelg on 21st November, 1839, settled with his family where O'Halloran Hill is today.   On 2nd February Thomas was nominated a Justice of the Peace, and in 1840, was gazetted Major-Commandant of the South Australian Militia on 26th February, and on 8th June as Commissioner of Police.

A very tragic event to take place that year in 1840, was when the ship Maria was wrecked at Lacepede Bay (Kingston S.E.) and the crew were murdered by the aboriginals, Major O'Halloran went down to investigate the matter. He was joined on the road by Mr. C. Bonney and another gentleman, who accompanied him unofficially.   The result of the investigation was, that the Major hanged two or three of the natives.   This proceeding was very severely condemned by a, number of colonists, who made very strong representations upon the subject to both the local and home Governments.   The result, however, showed that whatever opinions might be entertained respecting the abstract propriety of the summary measures adopted by the gallant Major, they were in reality lawful as he was in possession of instructions and a warrant from the  Governor authorising that very action. No organised attack was ever afterwards made upon Europeans by the natives in that part of the colony.   From Adelaide up the Coorong to beyond the Salt Creek, the aborigines were impressed with a sense of the irresistible power of the white man, and the certainty that acts of violence against him would meet with exemplary punishment.

On the 17th August of the same year he was sent in command of an expedition against the Milmanura (or Big Murray) Aborigines.   On the 21st April, 1841, he commanded an expedition against the River Murray and Rufus Aborigines.   On the 31st May, he was again sent against the same tribes.   On the 7th November he was in command of an expedition to Port Lincoln against the Battara Aborigines.   On 12th April, 1843, he resigned his appointment as Commissioner of Police.   While at the head of the police force he   maintained it in a very high state of efficiency; and, though a rigid disciplinarian was very much liked and highly respected by his subordinate officers and men.
On his retirement he was presented with a silver snuffbox by the mounted force and with an address from the officers and men of the foot police.   On the 15th June, of the same year, he was nominated senior non-official member of the old nominee Council and continued in that position for eight years, till we  obtained our first instalment of representative  government.   As a nominee Councillor, Major   O'Halloran deserved well of the people, being continually in opposition to some of the controversial measures of the Government of the day, the most notable instance being the question of the royalties upon minerals, that the Government was endeavouring to impose.   The Constitution of that day was beautifully simple. 

On many questions the Legislative Chamber was certain to be equally divided, the Governor and his three officials voting on one side, and the four non-officials on the other, and then Her Majesty's representative gave his casting vote, and the matter was settled. After this fashion the royalties were about to become law, a division being called for ; but it required five members to make a quorum, and Major O'Halloran, Sir John Morphett, and the two other non-official nominees walking out, left the Government baffled and        defeated.  Another great question in which the Major took a prominent part was that of State aid to religion, his vote and advocacy being used on the unpopular side. This cost him his election in 1851, when the mixed Constitution was proclaimed.  He stood for his own district, Noarlunga, but, though personally held in the highest esteem by the electors, he was, after an earnest struggle, defeated by Mr. William Peacock, a stranger to the district, by a majority of 42 votes.

 On the 17th July he was entertained at a public dinner by his supporters at Morphett Vale, and on the 29th at Willunga.   In 1855 he opposed Mr. Reynolds for the Sturt, but was again unsuccessful.   During the same year he was offered a nominee-ship in the   Council by Sir Richard MacDonnell, but declined.  
About the close of the previous year he was gazetted a Lieutenant-Colonel of the Volunteer Military Force.   When the next Constitution was granted, it was a    general feeling that Major O'Halloran was a most proper candidate for the Legislative Council, and at the first election, in March 1857, he was returned at the head of the poll against 27 candidates, the votes recorded for him amounting to 3,499.  

In 1862 he resigned his commission as Justice of the Peace as a direct result of his strong disapproval of some of the magisterial appointments made by the Government.  In 1863 he resigned his seat in the Legislative Council, having occupied it for six years.   Since then he lived in retirement, rarely taking part in public matters.  Major O'Halloran was the principal founder and supporter of Christchurch, O'Halloran Hill; also one of the original Governors of St. Peter's Collegiate School.

He was succeeded by his first marriage a daughter (Ann) married to Captain Disney Roebuck, late of the 23rd Fusiliers.  By his second marriage he leaves three sons, Mr. Thomas O'Halloran, Manager of the National Bank, at Strathalbyn, Mr. Henry O'Halloran, also in the Bank and Mr. George O'Halloran of the Land Office, who is at the present time suffering from ill-health and a daughter married to Mr. F. Wright, late General Manager of the National Bank.

The deceased Major was in his 73rd year. The news of his death was received with regret by many colonists, especially among the early settlers, who respected him as an upright and high-minded gentleman of the old school.






The shipwreck of the Brigantine Maria 1840.
(The South Australian Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1858-1889), Monday 12 September 1870, page 4, 5


In 1840 a gazette notice for Major-Commandant of the South Australian Militia appeared on 26th February, and then on 8th June another gazette notice appeared for Commissioner of Police. Major O'Halloran was appointed to both positions.






It will be remembered by old colonists that in 1840, when the Maria was wrecked at Lacepede Bay (Kingston S.E.) and the crew were  murdered by the aboriginals, Major O'Halloran went down to investigate the    matter on the orders of the Governor of South  Australia.  He was joined on the road by Mr. C. Bonney and another gentleman, who accompanied him  unofficially.   The result of the investigation was, that the Major hanged two or three of the natives.    This proceeding was very severely condemned by a number of colonists, who made very strong representations upon the subject to both the local and home (England) Governments.   The result, however, showed that whatever opinions might be entertained   respecting the abstract propriety of the summary measures adopted by the gallant Major, they were in reality the   wisest and most merciful for both races. No organised attack was ever afterwards made upon Europeans by the natives in that part of the colony.   From Adelaide up the Coorong to beyond the Salt Creek, the aborigines were impressed with a sense of the irresistible power of the white man, and the certainty that acts of violence against him would meet with exemplary punishment.

In 1854 our Major was gazetted a, Lieutenant-Colonel of the Volunteer Military Force.


OLD TALES RETOLD
AN INTERESTING CHAPTER IN SOUTH AUSTRALIAN HISTORY.

The South Australian Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1858-1889), Monday 12 September 1870, page 4, 5

A generation has passed away since the wreck of the brigantine Maria in Lacepede Bay, and the murder of the crew story was a very painful one, fifteen of the unfortunate crew and passengers, including women and children, having been barbarously butchered by a tribe of the Murray aboriginals on their suffering journey from the scene of the shipwreck to Adelaide, which,  unhappily, they never completed. The massacre happened in 1840, while Colonel Gawler was Governor of the colony. When the sad news reached the seat of Government intense grief and  indignation were excited in the minds of the settlers, and Colonel Gawler, an old military man, determined to avenge the deaths of his murdered fellow-country men. The late Major O'Halloran, whose death occurred the other day, was the Commissioner of    Police, and to him the   onerous and responsible work was assigned of  punishing the natives who had committed the crime.

How he accomplished the work is known to some of the old colonists, but the new generation will have sprung up unaware the events occurred have but a hazy notion of the expedition undertaken by the Major.
We have had placed in our hands by the family of  Major O'Halloran, his journal kept during the expedition, and copies of the public documents connected with it. The journal is kept and the  documents entered with all the careful precision which might have been expected from a trained soldier; and they are sufficient to vindicate the deceased gentleman from the serious charges which were brought against him at the time, of having acted in an illegal manner, and more in the spirit of a ruthless soldier than of an officer of the Civil Government. 

We have read with an interest which we do not care to express, the ink-faded entries in the old journal of Major O'Halloran, and while admitting that, perhaps, a rough kind of justice, hardly sanctioned by the strict letter or spirit of the law was administered to the   native murderers, we have no hesitation in saying that substantial justice was done. One thing is very      apparent—the Major was supremely anxious to do what he regarded as his duty in a solemn and reverent way. It was no mere brutal and unreasoning spirit of revenge that influenced him. He seems to have felt that he had a painful duty to discharge, and he performed it with as much solemnity as a Judge does when, in obedience to the law, he sentences a convicted murderer to the gallows.

The record opens with a copy of the instructions which the Commissioner received from Colonel Gawler under date August 14, 1840, and which are worth copying.
" You will proceed with the party described on the margin (Major O'Halloran, Captain Nixon, Mr. Hart, Inspector Tolmer, 12 policemen, Mr. Pullen, 11 sailors, and three or four Encounter Bay natives, Mr. C. Bonney subsequently joining as a volunteer) to the elbow of the Goolwa, by such routes as you shall judge expedient.”
"You will make arrangements that two boats shall be placed on the river, with provisions and necessaries on board for your whole party for 14 days.
" You will have at least seven days' provisions in addition in charge of a foot police party at the elbow.

"The object of your expedition is to apprehend and bring to summary justice the ringleaders in the murder, or any of the murderers (in all not to exceed three) of eight or more white persons, some of whose bodies were found about — days since, about 19 miles to the southward of the sea-mouth of the Goolwa or Murray.
" To this end your first object should be, if possible, to make prisoners the whole number congregated with the murderers. It is of very great importance that, if possible, in effecting this portion of the duty, no blood should be shed or violence shown or encountered.
"The future effect of the expedition on the minds and conduct of the natives will certainly be much more beneficial if the murderers can be captured without bloodshed.

" This, however, will probably be the most difficult part of your duty, and if in the execution of it you are really compelled to abandon temperate measures, and to resort to those of extreme force against the whole tribe, you will not be held  blameable. Your duty is to capture the murderers, and this object must be effected if they fall within your reach.
" You will most carefully and distinctly explain to all friendly natives that your warfare is not with any but the tribe by which the murder was committed, and even to this tribe, you will, if opportunity  permits, explain as distinctly (which, from the shortness of the distance
at which their weapons take effect you will probably be able to do, even if they should be in hostility against you) that if they will deliver up the  murderers, your aggression against all others shall cease.
" The horses should, with the greatest care, be kept out of sight until the last moment. This may be effected by sending them along the sea-beach, not allowing any to rise the sand hills.
" When the prisoners are taken, you will proceed deliberately, and with all suitable form, to discover, through the medium of the Encounter Bay aboriginals, who were the persons actually concerned in the murder. You will take every reasonable method of exhibiting to your own  party, and to all the aboriginals present, that your enquiry is deliberate, and conducted on principles of the strictest justice.

"When, to your own thorough, conviction, you shall have identified any number, not exceeding three, of the actual murderers, you will distinctly point out such men, and require the deliberate opinions of Mr. Pullen, Captain Nixon, and the Encounter Bay aboriginals, concerning their guilt, and you will make a note by names of those opinions as to guilty or not guilty, for the information of the Governor. You will, however, act upon your own single deliberate judgement.

" Should your mind become satisfied of the guilt as to actual participation in the murder of any number not exceeding three, you will, if possible, move the whole tribe in your power to the spot at which the murder was committed. You will there explain to the aboriginals the nature of your conduct and the orders you have received from the Governor, and you will deliberately and formally cause sentence of death to be executed, by shooting or hanging, upon the convicted murderers, not exceeding three, as above described. You will then cause your party to return to its different stations.

" Should you not be able to succeed in capturing any aboriginals against whom you can obtain evidence satisfactory to yourself, you will arrange your movements so as to return by the time that your provisions are exhausted.

" The whole party engaged in the expedition is placed under your absolute command. You will be careful to maintain strict discipline in it, especially as regards conduct towards the natives and their women. For so doing this shall be your sufficient warrant.

.............. (Signed)

George Gawler, Governor S. A.




POLICING THE OUTLAW SPARROW
by Max Slee

Over the years the SA Police have been assigned a wide variety of extraneous duties, some being pleasant to perform, and others being quite odious such as receiving wild dog (dingo) scalps.  One of the more unusual related to the Sparrow Destruction Act.  The origins of this Act actually had a police  connection through the family of Major T.S. O’Halloran, the first to hold the position of Commissioner of Police.

By the 1860s sparrows were already at vermin levels in Victoria.  Despite that, there were several attempts by Adelaide colonists during that decade to import sparrows in the cause of ‘acclimatisation’, but few had survived.     Ignoring public protestations, in 1871 a son of T.S O’Halloran successfully imported a batch of these ‘feathered strangers’ and released them at O’Halloran Hill.  In common with many introduced species, they rapidly became a pest, eating crops and fruit, thus leading to the Sparrow  Destruction Act of 1882.

Declared an outlaw, the tiny sparrow had a government bounty placed upon its head – sixpence a dozen on their severed heads, and two shillings and   sixpence per one hundred sparrow eggs.  The bounty was payable in the form of a voucher, issued at nominated police stations, post offices, and railway stations.  The bounty hunters, mostly lads, presented their trophies for tallying and then redeemed the vouchers for cash at the Chief Secretary’s Office in Adelaide.  There were even public-spirited clubs formed to hunt sparrows – one based at Marion reported 33,842 heads and eggs destroyed from 1891 to 1893.

Although the Sparrow Destruction Act was instantly popular with lads, the police received this  additional task with resignation.  Keen farm boys were soon bringing in hundreds of heads and eggs, often in various stages of decomposition.  These not only had to be counted but also had to be identified as being of  genuine sparrow origin – there was a heavy toll on native bird eggs through mistaken identity.  Then the vermin booty had to be disposed of, not only hygienically but also securely, so that none were ‘recycled’ for a repeat claim.

The fecund breeding habits of the sparrow inevitably outdid the predatory skills of the boys, and so sparrow numbers soared.  Orders for destruction under the Sparrow Destruction Act were discontinued by proclamation in 1884, but then a new Act was proclaimed in 1889, bringing local government into the fray. Various strategies then followed, including compulsory destruction by landowners and poisoning.  By the turn of the 20th century concerted action had ceased, even though the Act continued until repeal in 1933, when the authorities finally admitted defeat.  The outlaws had won the day.





POLICE COMMISSIONER RESIGNS.
 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR.
 
South Australian Register, Wednesday 26 April 1843, page 3.
Police-Office, Adelaide, April 11, 1843.
T. O'Halloran, Esq., Commissioner of Police, etc., etc.

Sir—We the undersigned Officers, Non-commissioned Officers, and Men of the Metropolitan Police Force, having heard, with regret, that you have resigned into the hands of his Excellency the Governor the office of our Commissioner, which you have held for a period of nearly three years, cannot allow ourselves to part from you without expressing our sincere sorrow that circumstances should have rendered it necessary for you to tender your resignation.  During the above period, we have one and all had repeated opportunities of witnessing your anxious desire to promote the interests of the Force generally, and we do not know of a single instance in which a meritorious line of conduct on our part has not been responded to by you, and the object of it recommended for promotion.

Your uniform kindness and attention to us is readily acknowledged by all.   When punishment has been necessary in any case, we can with confidence say that it has been by you invariably meted out with justice, and where contrition for an offence has been shown, you have been ever ready to give a willing ear to it, and mitigate some portion of our sentence.
Upon your leaving the Force, we cannot but express our deep sorrow at parting with you, not only as an excellent officer and disciplinarian, but as a good man; and be assured that we shall ever look back with pleasure to those days which we have passed under your command, and that, upon your retirement into private life, you will carry with you the sincere respect and regard of all of us; and wishing you and your family all the health and happiness that the sublunary world can afford, believe us to be, with lasting gratitude.

 Your most obedient and ever humble servants, (Signed by Inspector Stewart, Sub-Inspector Litchfield, the Non-commissioned Officers
and Constables in the Metropolitan Police.)
 


Lizard Lodge, O'Halloran Hill.
15th April, 1843.
James Stuart, Esq.,
Inspector Metropolitan Police,
Adelaide.

Dear Sir— It was my intention on Wednesday last to have addressed a few parting words to the officers and men under your immediate command, previous to leaving the office with the new Commissioner, but when the moment came, I felt quite unable to say, as I had intended, " Good bye."   I now, therefore, acknowledge by letter the receipt of the flattering address you were kind enough to hand me in the name of yourself and the officers and men of the Metropolitan Police, and which I was quite unprepared for when you kindly presented it.
The expressions of attachment therein conveyed to me by those I have so long had the honour of commanding, are most soothing and grateful to my feelings at the sad moment of separation, and make me not a little proud of being thought worthy of such high commendations as the kind partiality of all confers upon me in the above address.
Begging all concerned to accept my warmest acknowledgments, and assuring them through you that I shall ever feel heartfelt gratitude for the sentiments expressed towards me, I remain, dear Sir, with sincere regard.
Very faithfully yours.
T. O'HALLORAN.





The South Australian Advertiser

Wednesday 17 August 1870.

DIED.

O'HALLORAN.—On the 16th August, at  Lizard Lodge, Major Thomas Shuldham O'Halloran, in his 73rd year.













OBITUARY


“The South Australian Advertiser” (Adelaide, SA : 1858-1889), Wednesday 17 August 1870, page 2.

Our obituary notice contains a record of the death of    another old colonist—Major Thomas Shuldham O'Halloran, of Lizard Lodge, O'Halloran Hill—who died on 16th August. He was the second and eldest surviving son of Major-General Sir Joseph O'Halloran, G.C.B.,  Bengal Army. He was born at Berhatnpore, in the East Indies, on 25th October, 1797 ; was a cadet at the Royal Military College, Marlow, in 1808; appointed Ensign in the Royal West Middlesex Militia, 1809.  In 1812, the College and students were removed from Marlow to   Sandhurst.   In 1813, he was gazetted an Ensign in the 17th Foot, and joined his regiment in 1814. Served with it   during the whole of the Nepal War during the years 1814, '15, and '16. In 1817, received his Lieutenancy on 28th June, and served during the Deccan War (India) in 1817 and 1818.   Was married on 1st August, 1821, to Miss Ann Goss, of Dawlish, who died in 1823, in Calcutta, leaving two children, of whom one died in India.

In 1822 exchanged from the 17th to the 44th Regiment, which he joined in Calcutta in January, 1823. In 1824 was ordered with left wing of the 44th to Chittagong, where he arrived early in June, and was appointed Paymaster,   Quartermaster, and Interpreter. On the 30th October was appointed Brigade-Major to Brigadier-General Duncan, C.B., who commanded the Sylket division of the army during the Burmese war, and served on his staff until his death in November, 1825. He received a medal for war service in India for Nepal and Ava.   On 27th April, 1827, purchased his company in the 99th Regiment.   Exchanged into the 56th Regiment in 1828.   In 1829 exchanged into the 6th Regiment, and joined his father as A.D.C., at Sangur, in Central India.   From June, 1830, to January, 1831, served as Deputy Assistant Quartermaster-General at Sangor. In 1834 married to Miss Jane Waring, of Newry.  Retired on half-pay in October. In 1837 was placed on full-pay as Captain in the 97th Regiment.   In that year was sent in command of two companies of his regiment and a troop of the 4th Dragoon Guards to quell the riots in Yorkshire.

In 1838 retired from the army by the sale of his commission; sailed for South Australia same year in the “Rajahsthan”, and landed at Glenelg on 21st November, 1839; settled with his family at O'Halloran Hill.   On 2nd February was nominated a Justice of the Peace. In 1840 was gazetted Major-Commandant of the South Australian Militia on 26th February, and on 8th June as Commissioner of Police. It will be remembered by old colonists that in 1840, when the “Maria” was wrecked at Lacepede Bay (Kingston S.E.) and the crew were murdered by the aboriginals, Major O'Halloran went down to investigate the matter.
He was joined on the road by Mr. C. Bonney and another gentleman, who accompanied him unofficially.   The result of the investigation was, that the Major hanged two or three of the natives.    This proceeding was very severely condemned by a number of colonists, who made very strong representations upon the subject to both the local and home Governments.

The result, however, showed that whatever opinions might be entertained respecting the abstract propriety of the summary measures adopted by the gallant Major, they were in reality the wisest and most merciful for both races. No organised attack was ever afterwards made upon    Europeans by the natives in that part of the colony.   From Adelaide up the Coorong to beyond the Salt Creek, the aborigines were impressed with a sense of the irresistible power of the white man, and the certainty that acts of  violence against him would meet with exemplary punishment.
On the 17th August of the same year he was sent in command of an expedition against the Milmanura (or Big Murray) Aborigines.
On the 21st April, 1841, he commanded an expedition against the River Murray and Rufus Aborigines. On the 31st May, he was again sent against the same tribes.   On the 7th November he was in command of an expedition to Port Lincoln against the Battara Aborigines.   On 12th April, 1843, he resigned his appointment as Commissioner of Police.   While at the head of the police force he maintained it in a very high state of efficiency ; and, though a rigid disciplinarian, was much liked and highly respected by his subordinate officers and men, a number of whom are still in the colony, and still speak in the most eulogistic terms of their old commander.On his retirement he was presented with a, silver snuffbox by the mounted force, and with an address from the officers and men of the foot police.   On the 15th June, of the same year, he was nominated senior non-official member of the old nominee Council, and continued in that position for eight years, till we obtained our first instalment of representative government.     As a nominee Councillor Major O'Halloran deserved well of the people, being continually in opposition to some of the obnoxious measures of the Government, the most notable instance being upon the question of the royalties upon minerals, that the Government was endeavouring to impose.

The Constitution of that day was beautifully simple. 
On many questions the Legislative Chamber was certain to be equally divided, the Governor and his three officials voting on one side, and the four non-officials on the other, and then Her Majesty's representative gave his casting vote, and the matter was settled. After this fashion the obnoxious royalties were about to become law, a division being called for ; but it required five   members to make a quorum, and Major O'Halloran, Sir John Morphett, and the two other non-official nominees walking out, left the Government baffled and defeated.

Another great question in which the Major took a    prominent part was that of State aid to religion, his vote and advocacy being used on the unpopular side. This cost him his election in 1851, when the mixed Constitution was proclaimed.  He stood for his own district, Noarlunga, but, though personally held in the highest esteem by the electors, he was, after an earnest struggle, defeated by Mr. Wm. Peacock, a stranger to the district, by a majority of 42 votes. On the 17th July he was entertained at a public dinner by his supporters at       Morphett Vale, and on the 29th at Willunga.  

In 1855 he opposed Mr. Reynolds for the Sturt, but was again unsuccessful.   During the same year he was offered a nominee ship in the Council by Sir Richard MacDonnell, but declined.   About the close of the previous year he was gazetted a, Lieutenant-Colonel of the Volunteer Military Force. When our present Constitution was granted, it was a general feeling that Major O'Halloran was a most proper candidate for the Legislative Council, and at the first election, in March, 1857, he was returned at the head of the poll against 27 candidates, the votes recorded for him amounting to 3,499.  

In 1862 be resigned his commission as Justice of the Peace, in consequence of his strong disapproval of some of the magisterial appointments made by the Government.  In 1863 he resigned his seat in the Legislative Council, having occupied it for six years. Since then he has lived in retirement, rarely taking part in public matters.  Major O'Halloran was the principal   founder and supporter of Christchurch, O'Halloran Hill; also one of the original Governors of St. Peter's Collegiate School.

He leaves issue by his first marriage a daughter (Ann) married to Captain Disney Roebuck, late of the 23rd Fusileers.
By his second marriage he leaves three sons, Mr. Thomas O'Halloran, Manager of the National Bank, at Strathalbyn Mr. Henry O'Halloran, also in the Bank and Mr. George O'Halloran of the Land Office, who is at the present time suffering from ill-health and a daughter married to Mr. F. Wright, late General Manager of the National Bank.    The deceased Major was in his 73rd year. The news of his death will be received with regret by many colonists, especially among the early settlers, who respected him as an upright and high-minded gentleman of the old school.
  
















Lizard Lodge


Home of T.S. O’Halloran, CMG, first Police Commissioner, at O’Halloran Hill 1865.




Lizard Lodge was located on the corner of Main South Road and Majors Road, O’Halloran Hill, both named after our Thomas.  It is about 208 hectares and 16 kilometres south of Adelaide. It consisted of a Homestead building, out building and grazing and crop paddocks.   The property changed hands a number of times until it was compulsorily acquired by the Commonwealth of Australia in 1913 and used by the Australian Army for training troops and raising horses (Glenthorne No. 9 Remount Depot). From 1947 to 1996 the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) operated a research facility on Glenthorne to study animal and human nutrition. Significant heritage buildings exist there today, in desperate need of restoration and protection.

In May 2001, following public demand that Glenthorne farm be kept as open space, the University of Adelaide purchased the property from the CSIRO for $7.0 million using a taxpayer funded grant from the John Olsen, South Australian Government. This grant was given on condition that the land is used for the development of a vineyard and wine research centre and not for urban development of any kind. The University eventually found the vineyard plan not to be an economically viable option and has instead proposed a Woodland Recovery Initiative for the Mount Lofty Ranges to be operated from Glenthorne farm.

In October 2008, after more than 7 years of delay and a number of unsuitable proposals, the University of Adelaide outlined a further plan to build 950 houses along the western side of the property’s water course, to fund the planned Woodland Recovery Initiative. Effectively this plan would sacrifice any effective revegetation plans for the property and deliberately breach the conditions of the Deed of Sale by building housing over open space. This latest Plan was again rejected by the current South Australian Government in March, 2009.

Lizard Lodge is an unusual name for a property, especially so in the 1840’s but the name had special significance for Thomas O’Halloran.   The story told by Thomas was that when his father Major-General Sir Joseph O'Halloran was in the field in India, all in his group were asleep one night when he was awakened by a lizard running over him.   It roused him and he then realise that his group was about to be attacked by the enemy.   The General was able to rouse his troops and prevent a massacre.   This story must have left a lasting impression on out Thomas!






lizard spoon




The rear of a piece of cutlery with the “Lizard” engraved, found during an excavation by
Dr. Keryn Walshe & Dr. Pam Smith,
Flinders University, Department of Archaeology.



OHalloran




HISTORIC HOMESTEAD BURNED!
The home of South Australia’s first Police Commissioner.


“The Advertiser”,  Monday 22 August 1932,  Page 8.

Some Of "Glenthorne Timber Brought On “Buffalo”

MESS FURNITURE LOST.

Glenthorne, a 40 years old homestead on the Government Remount Farm at O'Halloran Hill, was burnt early on Saturday morning.  The only portion saved was the original part of the house, portion of which was brought to South Australia on the “Buffalo” in 1836.  A special course, attended by about 50 members of the Staff Corps and Australian Instructional Corps, is in progress at O’Halloran Hill.

The old house was condemned for human habitation some years ago, and the members of the school were living in tents, but were using certain rooms in the house—known in military circles as "The Chateau"—as officers' and sergeants' messes.  The alarm was given by one of the cooks about 5.35 a.m.

Everybody turned out, and a hose was turned on the flames, but they had too good a hold of the old timbers for water to be of any use.  Furniture in the sergeants’ mess, on the ground floor, was saved, but the stairs were well alight when the alarm was given, and all the furniture from the Staff Corps mess at Keswick, which was on the upper floor, was lost.

The fire was not extinguished until 11 o'clock. The fire left the four walls standing. The portion saved was the one-storied north wing, built on a level with the old kitchen and cellars, which is Lizard Lodge, built by Major Thomas Shuldham O’Halloran, grandfather of Mr. T. S. O’Halloran, K.C., and Mrs. W. A. Ross. The furniture lost was valued at £200.  The cause of  the fire will be the subject of a departmental enquiry

.








More information -
http://adbonline.anu.edu.au/biogs/A020266b.htm
 


 


 
 

Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Site map | Tell a Friend
© 2010  South Australian Police Historical
Society Incorporated.  All Rights Reserved.
This web site first established on November 23rd 2000.
Web development by Charlie Tredrea