Category: Postal History
1857 (Feb 27) outer to "Williams River/South Australia/Sidney" (!) endorsed "Convict's Letter Establishment Western Australia" at top & countersigned "Thomas H Dixon/Superintendent" at lower-left, good strike of the undated oval 'POST OFFICE/[crown]/FREMANTLE/WESTERN AUSTRALIA' handstamp, Sydney transit b/s of AP2/1857, heavy central fold, professionally & expertly cleaned. Illustrated by Haynes & Pope at page 428, who stated "The authorising signature of Thomas Dixon was the equivalent of Passed by Censor". Ex Dr Cecil Walkley: acquired for $4600.̃̃The Williams River is north of Newcastle NSW! Of course, there is also a Williams River in WA, SW of Narrogin. Given that the writer was severely geographically challenged, the local Williams River was likely his intended destination! Convict mail from Western Australia is very scarce and highly prized. Dr Walkley's extraordinary 1855 convict entire to Poland (!) was, regrettably, acquired by the WA Library for $36,800. ̃̃Thomas Hill Dixon arrived with the first group of convicts per "Scindian" as the first Superintendent of Convicts. He is credited with running a humane service & was opposed to flogging. In 1859 he was dismissed after admitting embezzling £89 of public money. His subsequent life in Singapore, Labuan & China reads like a 1930s adventure novel!
NEW SOUTH WALES , unusual origins or destinations , Censored Mail , Convict Mail , WESTERN AUSTRALIA , AUSTRALIAN COLONIES General , Postal History , AUSTRALIA