Sunday, 27 March 2016

The Jones Family Part 1: Early married life, the Lord Lyndoch Hotel and Alliance

My Great Great Great Grandparents on my Father’s side of the family were publicans, (actually I have a few publicans on all sides of my family but more on that another time). 

Thomas Rowlands JONES and Theophila Paulina GĂ–ETTLING married on the 4th of September 1849 in St George’s Church, Gawler, South Australia.  Theophila was only 18 and Thomas was 26 years old.[i]  

The earliest mention I have found of Theophila is a news report of a court proceeding in 1848 where she was witness to an assault, and was assaulted herself when she tried to step in. She was described by the journalist covering the court proceedings as a “young German girl”, and she was examined through an interpreter. [ii]

It was mentioned in an article that Thomas Jones was the only non-German member of the German Rifle Club[iii] (club champion in 1858), and his wife needed an interpreter in court only a year before they were married,  so my guess is that Thomas must have been able to speak German.

The first hotel the couple ran was the Lord Lyndoch hotel in the Lyndoch Valley, South Australia probably between 1849 and 1850. It was a simple hotel without plaster on the walls. There is a newspaper reference to Thomas Jones (of the Lord Lyndoch) in early 1850, being thrown from a horse and bruising a just healed broken arm.[iv]

In mid-1850 the couple transferred their licence from the Lord Lyndoch (which became a temperance hotel) to the Alliance Hotel in Tanunda. [v] There is a lovely description of the hotel in SKETCHES OF THE PRESENT STATE OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA.No. XVIII— Tanunda. (1851)
“ There are two inns in this place — the one English, the other German; though the inhabitants are mostly the latter ; and indeed Jones, the landlord of the English house, the Alliance Hotel, is married to a German lass. The other inn is called the Tanunda Hotel, and is kept by Buttner, who formerly lived in Adelaide. We of course alighted at Jones's, in compliment to our country. The general sitting-room here is of a more light and tasty character than inn apartments usually are, and with some show of ornament. It is surrounded by several water-colour drawings by the Jones family (artists evidently), and the drawings appear to have been exhibited. Among them, two snow scenes in village streets are very striking : we thought one of them the most effective drawing of the class we had ever seen ; and Jones assured us there was no trick in the effect. We found the Alliance cheerful and comfortable ; but here, as elsewhere, the bedrooms are far too close and confined ; disadvantages hardly compensated for by the style of the salle a' manger. The charges are moderate. Horse feed was the dearest article, but the season may warrant this.”[vi]

The writer then went on to describe Tanunda, and from a number of comments seemed to be quite biased against Germans.
 “several good-looking stores. There are butchers, bakers, shoemakers, and other usual tradesman, Germans.”
He also talked of a German owned flour mill near the Alliance that had a steam motor that ran day and night. 
It is curious, however, that the engine, like all Germans, being an excellent timist, its monotony was forgotten in its very regularity.”
Hmmm. I hope he was not suggesting that Germans are monotonous!
The writer also described a Street light that had been made by Jones as a beacon outside the hotel at night made from a tin pot.
I found the mention of watercolour paintings interesting as years ago I read some research on the Jones Family by my distant cousin Christopher Ridings. In his research, he described Thomas Rowlands JONES’ father Thomas JONES as a watercolourist of some note, so I love that his family also had some talent. Christopher Ridings has a blog here:

Thomas and Theophila's first child, (my Great Great Grandmother) Elizabeth Pauline JONES was born on the 4th of January 1851 in Tanunda.  I do not have a record of her birth registration, but there was a notice in the paper.[vii] She would have been born when they were running the Alliance Hotel.

Thanks for reading! My next post will be more about the Jones Family, their hotels, and perhaps a riot.

[i] 1849 'Family Notices', Adelaide Observer (SA : 1843 - 1904), 15 September, p. 2. , viewed 27 Feb 2016,
[ii] 1848 'CRIMINAL JURISDICTION.', South Australian (Adelaide, SA : 1844 - 1851), 25 February, p. 2. , viewed 10 Mar 2016, v. WEBB AND OTHERS.
[iii] 1859 'THE GERMAN RIFLE CLUB MEETING', The South Australian Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1858 - 1889), 26 April, p. 3. , viewed 27 Mar 2016,
[iv] 1850 'LOCAL NEWS.', South Australian (Adelaide, SA : 1844 - 1851), 15 January, p. 2. , viewed 27 Feb 2016,
[v] 1850 'BENCH OF MAGISTRATES.', South Australian (Adelaide, SA : 1844 - 1851), 11 June, p. 3. , viewed 27 Feb 2016,
[vi] 1851 'SKETCHES OF THE PRESENT STATE OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA.', South Australian Register (Adelaide, SA : 1839 - 1900), 26 June, p. 3. , viewed 27 Mar 2016,
[vii] 1851 'Family Notices', Adelaide Times (SA : 1848 - 1858), 8 January, p. 2. , viewed 10 Mar 2016,

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