Guide to the Letters of Walter Bently Woodbury (as filmed by the AJCP)



National Library of Australia View Catalogue Record

Created: 2019

Online Items

Series. Letters of Walter Woodbury to his Mother, 30 January 1852 - 1 September 1858

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Woodbury (Manchester), 21 November 1852 (File 1)

Arrival in Australia; work as a teamster, cook and surveyor; plans to visit goldfields.

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Woodbury, 30 December 1852 (File 2)

High unemployment in Melbourne; appointment as surveyor's labourer; hot weather; Christmas; colonial dress; ship arrivals; death of Duke of Wellington; variable climate of Melbourne. (partly written crosswise)

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Woodbury, 1852-01-30 [i.e. 1853] (File 3)

Living in tent near beach; photography; wages; description of South Yarra Encampment; the diggings; respectable men working as labourers.

Woodbury (Buninyong) to Ellen Woodbury, 24 April 1853 - 19 May 1853 (File 4)

Journey from Melbourne to Buninyong; slowness of Australian mail steamers; English news; reading Uncle Tom's Cabin; food; camp at Buninyong; race between Marco Polo and Antelope; explosion of powder flask; prices; hints for emigrants.

Woodbury to Ellen Woodbury, [July 1853] (File 5)

Meeting with Indigenous Australians; daily routine of surveying work; Gold Escort held up by bushrangers; English news. (Incomplete fragments, written crosswise, very poor legibility).

Woodbury (Buninyong) to Ellen Woodbury, 10 August 1853 (File 6)

Approach of summer; encounter with black snake; survey of Buninyong; drink the ruling vice of colony; wreck of Serampore. (incomplete)

Woodbury to Ellen Woodbury, [September 1853] (File 7)

Church services; Bible-reading; unrest on goldfields over miners' licences; surveying work; encounter with snakes; description of diggings; future movements. (incomplete, written cross-wise).

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Woodbury, 6 January 1854 - 16 February 1854 (File 8)

Journey back to Melbourne; meeting with Westall; appointment as draughtsman in Commission of Sewers and Water Supply; plans to photograph Westall's house. (partly written crosswise).

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Woodbury, 1 September 1854 - 3 September 1854 (File 9)

Despatch of daguerreotypes; thanks for photographs; no plans of marriage; work as draughtsman; refers to Westall, Howitt; photographic work.

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Woodbury, 30 December 1854 (File 10)

Unemployment; reference given by Commission of Sewers and Water Supply; plans to be photographic artist and tour colony; Eureka uprising.

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Woodbury, 1 August 1855 - 14 October 1855 (File 11)

Establishment of photographic business at North Melbourne; economic depression; many dying of starvation; Woodbury's lack of success at diggings; income; work for Batchelors, principal daguerreotype establishment in Melbourne; visit of Lola Montez; Ellen Woodbury's intended marriage; earthquake; requests photographs; hopes Henry Woodbury will emigrate to Melbourne. (written crosswise) Also Woodbury's business card.

Woodbury (Melbourne) to Ellen Lloyd, 26 February 1856 (File 12)

Decline of business at North Melbourne; plans to transfer business to Melbourne; marriage of his mother; purchase of goods from England; urges brother Henry to emigrate and join business.

Woodbury (Woolshed Creek) to Ellen Lloyd, 23 August 1856 (File 13)

Lack of success in Melbourne; journey to Ovens Goldfields; photographic establishments at Beechworth and Woolshed Creek; description of house; plans to return to Melbourne and then tour South Sea Islands; dances; prices for photographs.

Woodbury (at sea) to Ellen Lloyd, 14 May 1857 - 9 June 1857 (File 14)

Partnership with Page at Ovens Goldfields; photographic views of Melbourne; voyage to Java on Young American; meals; fears about his health in Batavia; plans to visit China and India; Westall Family; views of Java coast; arrival at Batavia; impressions of town; daily routine; study of Malay language; opening of photographic business. (written crosswise)

Woodbury (Batavia) to Ellen Lloyd, 2 September 1857 - 9 September 1857 (File 15)

Dullness of Batavia; plans to travel in eastern Java; Batavian society; photographic prices; financial situation; sends portrait and stereographic slides; description of houses; daily routine; visit to Buitenzorg; description of landscape.

Woodbury (Sourabaya) to Ellen Lloyd, 2 March 1858 (File 16)

Success of photographic business; income; sends £50 for Henry Woodbury; plans to visit Philippines, China, Siam, Malaya; variety of customers; advantages of speaking Malay; health; order for Punch,Illustrated London News and other journals.

Woodbury (Passausean) to Ellen Lloyd, 15 June 1858 (File 17)

Receipt of portraits; improved financial position since leaving Australia; instructions for Henry Woodbury; sends sketch of Javanese woman; impending 24th birthday; scarcity of letters from England.

Woodbury (Soerakeota) to Ellen Lloyd, 1 September 1858 (File 18)

Decision to return to England and negotiate sale of photographs of East Indies; visit of Henry Woodbury to Java.