John Wilkinson 1842-1922 WARNING To aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders contains images and names of deceased Aboriginal people
On the evening of Tuesday 30 October 1900, four nights after Jimmy GOVERNOR was wounded and captured John Wilkinson was riding across his property at Goorangoola Creek to his brother George's property in Glenrock, Fullbrook Creek, near Singleton where he was staying.
Whilst crossing Loder Station about five miles from George's place he noticed a fire in one of the paddocks. He knew that the notorious Governor's had been seen in the area and rode to get his brother George.
He and brother George grabbed rifles and quietly returned to the spot. They hid and watched the campfire all night, not sure if it was a log laying beside the fire or a person.
At about 5:00am on 31 October, George took up a position on the summit of a hill and John rode around the other side of the camp to get a closer look.
John could then see it was an aboriginal asleep beside the fire wearing dark blue serge trousers with a rifle beside him. He called out "Surrender" and Joe Governor, Jimmy's brother, jumped up and reached for his rifle. As he did John fired but the rifle snapped.John loaded again although he had a repeating rifle it's action was not perfect. John fired two more shots and missed. John gave chase. Governor had turned and returned fire and John ran after him, went down on one knee, took careful aim and shot Governor through the back of the head, a distance of 300 feet. Governor somersaulted into the creek and died in the water.
George stayed by the body and John rode into Singleton to fetch the police.
There was much celebration for the Governors had terrorised the area killing and plundering for three and a half months.
John and his brother George shared the thousand pound reward and the jury found the killing justified.
For the story of the Governor's, The Australian Dictionary of Biography online has a version. The story of The Governor's - the film "The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith" based on the Novel by Thomas Keneally
John WILKINSON the son of Thomas Francis WILKINSON b:20 February 1806 in Leistershire England and died at St.Clair near Singleton on the 26 January 1883 and his wife Janet MCDONALD. Janet was known as Jessie and had been born on the 21 July 1816 at Isle Mull, Scotland and arrived in Australia with her parents Duncan MCDONALD 1771-1855 and his wife Anne nee MCDOUGALD 1779-1839, on the vessell 'British King' on the 28 February 1839
Jessie and Thomas were married at the Scots church in Paterson on the 19 October 1841. Jessie died 3 December 1912 at Carrow Brook near Singleton.
The children of this marriage were:-
John Wilkinson 1842 – d:1922
Coll Wilkinson 1843 – 1924
Duncan Wilkinson 1845 – 1918
William Wilkinson 1847 – 1853
Francis Thomas Wilkinson 1849 – 1936
Ann MacDougall Wilkinson 1851 – 1922
Isabella Wilkinson 1853 –
Elizabeth Wilkinson 1855 –
George Wilkinson 1857 – 1924
The photo below is post mortem of Joe Governer laid out on a stretcher at the Caledonian Hotel at Singleton.