1. Alfred Currie Wills died on 26 Jun 1871 in Wangaratta, Vic.
In about 2003 Police Magistrate Alfred Currie Wills first came to the notice of researchers from a paragraph in the book "Ned Kelly - A Short Life" by Ian Jones.
He was the first to sit in judgement of Ned Kelly for highway robbery. Ned was nearly 15 years of age at the time (based on this the year would have been about 1870). It appears there may have been an error in transcription as the book names H.C.Wills and not A.C.Wills. If you know of any descendants of this family please contact us.
2 November 2007 we received the following email:-
I am a member of Omeo Historical Society and have been delegated to put together a display pertaining to Magistrates who served in Omeo from 1850's onward ?
We have five original buildings dating from the first Court House late 1850's to the present court house 1890's, and have these open for visitors 7 days a week. We plan to set up a permanent diplay of photos and information on the early magistates in the "new" Court House.
A. C. Wills was Magistrate & Mining Warden at Omeo, Vic. from 1858 till 1862, staying on till 24 July 1862 showing the new Magistrate around. I believe business was conducted under canvas in his time.
Regarding A.C.Wills we have snippets from newspapers, diaries, bdm's, etc. and would like to acquire a photo to put with it. Can you Help?
Alfred married Emma Ring on 7 Jan 1861 in Launceston, Tas.
Extract from Argus Newspaper .
The Murray district was bounded on the north by the Murray, on the south-east by the Australian Alps and on the west by the Goulburn River.
The estimate of 200 for the district by Smyth is certainly wrong. A. C. Wills, former Police Magistrate and Warden at Omeo, stated that in May, 1835, there were about 500 or 600 men, women and children resident during a few months of each year at the headquarters of the "Gundanora" tribe on the elevated plain of Omeo. In 1842 they frequently assembled in larger numbers. In 1862 H. B. Lane stated that "the 40 blacks to whom rations, etc., are distributed at Tangamballanga are the sole remnant of three or four once powerful tribes each of which, even within the memory of old settlers, numbered from 200 to 300 souls. These tribes inhabited the tract of country now very nearly described on the electoral map as comprising the Murray district of the Eastern Province, and comprising an area of about 2,000 square miles." He goes on to state that the country was one well suited for the blacks.
Extract from Australian Post 15 July 1871
On the morning of the 26th June Mr A C Wills, the Police Magistrate, of Wangaratta, fell down dead in his house at eight o'clock. He had felt a terrible pain in his chest during the night, and was attended at five a.m. by Dr Dutchinson, who gave him some relief, and at the time apprehended nothing serious.
After the doctor left Mr Wills was walking about in his parlor, when his wife heard him fall, and, going into the room, found him dead. Mr Wills leaves a family of six children, the youngest being only sixteen days
An inquest was held on the 27th June before Mr Deputy-Coroner Dempster, when the jury found a verdict in accordance with the medical evidence, that Mr Wills, P.M., died of fatty degeneration of the heart.
Alfred and Emma had the following children:
+ 2 F i Florence Victoria Wills + 3 F ii Theresa Knight Wills 4 F iii Unnamed Wills was born on 4 Feb 1865 in Mors.
Twin daughters, one still born.
5 F iv Female Wills was born on 4 Feb 1865 in Mors. 6 v F. Wills was born in 1867 in Morses Ck. 7 M vi Alfred Currie Wills was born on 10 Jun 1871 in Wangaratta, Vic.
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