Guide to the Papers of Hugh Culling Eardley Childers (as filmed by the AJCP)



National Library of Australia View Catalogue Record

Created: 2019

Collection Summary

Childers, Hugh C.E., 1827-1896
Papers of Hugh Culling Eardley Childers (as filmed by the AJCP)
Date Range
29 May 1850 - 27 March 1895
Collection Number
20 items
Language of Materials
Australian Joint Copying Project
The Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP) online portal was created with the assistance of the Australian Public Service Modernisation Fund, 2017-2020. The National Library of Australia gratefully acknowledges the contribution of the other foundation AJCP partners, the State Library of New South Wales and The National Archives of the UK, and all other organisations which supported the work of the AJCP, the world's most extensive collaborative copying project, operating from 1948 to 1997.


Scope and Contents

The papers comprise the diary of the voyager of Hugh Culling Eardley Childers to Australia in 1850, four diaries of his wife Emily Childers in Melbourne in 1852-1856, and correspondence concerning their son Rowland, who was sent to Australia in 1878-1886.

Conditions Governing Access

Available for Access.

Conditions Governing Use

Many of the records digitised as part of the AJCP are still in copyright. Readers wishing to publish or reproduce documents should seek permission, in the first instance, from the owner of the original material.

Preferred Citation

Acknowledgement of use of this material should refer to the location of the original material and to the Australian Joint Copying Project.

Items from this collection should include references to the location of the original material and to the AJCP nla.obj number, which serves as the online identifier for the digital copy.

Example: M Series: Journal of Capt. James Cook, 18 February-23 September 1770, British Library Add. MS 27885 (AJCP ref:

Archival History

Material selectively filmed at the Royal Commonwealth Society, London, as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project, 1982 (AJCP Reels: M1687). Original microfilm digitised as part of the AJCP Online Delivery Project, 2017-2020.

Papers were formally held by the Royal Commonwealth Society, London. The archives moved to the University of Cambridge with the rest of the Royal Commonwealth Society Library in 1993.

Existence and Location of Originals

Royal Commonwealth Society Library, University of Cambridge Library, West Road, Cambridge, England.

Collection Reference: GBR/0115/RCMS 37. For further information see Hugh Culling Eardley Childers Papers []

Existence and Location of Copies

The original AJCP microfilm of the records filmed from this collection is available at the National Library of Australia [] as well as other institutions holding AJCP microfilm.

The papers of Edward J. Dunn (M1689), Wilfred Powell (M1688) and the records of the Royal Commonwealth Society (M1690-1703) have been listed and filmed separately.

Finding Aid Note

This finding aid is a revised online version of the original finding aid prepared by the Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP), published by the National Library of Australia in 2019. The original AJCP finding aids were unpublished typescripts or photocopies available from libraries that held copies of the original microfilm.

Dates used in this finding aid refer to the date range of the records selected for filming rather than to the date range of the Series or Files.


Australia; Bowen, Sir George F.; Childers, Emily; Childers, Hugh C.E.; Childers, Rowland; Emigrant voyages; Farms and farming: New South Wales; Farms and farming: Queensland; Great Britain; Hammond, Emily; Heneage, C.; Melbourne, Victoria; Melbourne, Victoria: immigration to; New South Wales; Plymouth, England; Politicians: Australia; Politicians: Britain; Queensland; Tyler, J.C.; Victoria: politics and government


Originally cited in Australian Joint Copying Project Handbook. Part 8: Miscellaneous (M) Series. Third Edition, published 1998. Entry 98, p. 34. []

Biographical / Historical

Hugh Culling Eardley Childers (1827-1896). Educated at Cheam School, Wadham College, Oxford, and Trinity College, Cambridge.

Childers migrated to Melbourne in 1850 and was Commissioner of National Schools (1851), Auditor-General (1852), and Member of the Legislative Council (1852), Collector of Customs (1853), and Member of the Legislative Assembly (1856).

He returned to England in 1858 and held positions of First Lord of the Admiralty (1868-1871), Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1872-1873), Secretary of State for War (1880-1882), Chancellor of the Exchequer (1880-1882), and Home Secretary (1886) in the ministries of W.E. Gladstone.

Item Descriptions

Series 5. Political Correspondence, 1890 - 27 March 1895

2 items

Filmed selectively.

Alfred Stephen. The name 'Port Jackson', Sydney, N.S.W. (Sydney), 1880 (File 200)

Sir Saul Samuel to Childers, 27 March 1895 (File 220)

Relates to an error in statement on naming of Port Jackson.

Series 6. Diaries, 29 May 1850 - 14 October 1850

1 item

Filmed selectively.

Diary kept by Childers, 1850-05-29 - 1850-05-30; 1850-07-09 - 1850-10-14 (File 2)

The diary covers his voyage from Plymouth to Adelaide and Melbourne, but most of his entries only give the position, course and weather.

Series 8. Diaries of Emily Childers, 1852 - 1856

1 item

Filmed selectively.

Diaries kept by Mrs Emily Childers in Australia, 1852-1853; 1855-1856 (File 1-4)

There are detailed entries for most days. The diaries record the life of the Childers Family in Melbourne, their visits to Portland and Hobart, household duties, children's activities, illnesses, visitors, picnics, sport, social events and Hugh Childers' elections and political activities. There are references to Governor C. La Trobe, Bishop C. Perry, J.B. Were, S. Henty and W. Learmonth.

Series 16-18. Papers of Rowland Childers, son of Hugh Childers, 1878 - October 1886

16 items

Subseries 17. Bills and financial papers, 1879 - 6 August 1880

7 items

Filmed selectively.

Bill from J.B. Milton and Co., Melbourne, 1879 (File)
Bill from David Carson, Melbourne, 1879 (File)
S.W. (Melbourne) to A.W. Cruickshank, 2 April 1880 (File)

Character of Rowland Childers, wishes to work on station.

Emily Hammond (Melbourne) to H.C.E. Childers, 20 April 1880 (File)

Debts of R. Childers

R. Childers (Jerilderie) to Emily Hammond, 2 August 1880 (File)

Payment of bills.

Emily Hammond to H.C.E. Childers, 6 August 1880 (File)

Debts of R. Childers.

Receipts from Bank of South Australia, July 1880 (File)

Subseries 18/1-115. Correspondence relating to Rowland Childers, 1878 - 1886

9 items


Correspondence between R. Childers and H.C.E. and Childers. Voyage to Australia; stay in Adelaide; Sir George Verdon; travels into interior; C. Heneage; move to Melbourne; Sir George Bowen; Victorian politics; interest in squatting; debts; life on stations at Jerilerse and Wananella, N.S.W.; move to Queensland; drought; plans to return to England. [September 1878-May 1886]

Sir George Bowen to H.C.E. Childers. R. Childers and C. Heneage; constitutional reform; impending departures from Melbourne. (2 letters) [November 1878]

Correspondence between C. Heneage and H.C.E. Childers. Association between R. Childers and Heneage; refusal of Melbourne club to accept Childers as member; victorian politics; book written by Heneage on colonies. [1878-1880]

Correspondence between E. Heneage and H.C.E. Childers; Association between R. Childers and C. Heneage. [1879]

J.C. Tyler (Melbourne) to H.C.E. Childers. R. Childers; Victorian politics. [1879-1880]

J.B. Were (Melbourne) to Emily Hammond; Behaviour of R. Childers. [31 January 1879]

Correspondence between Emily Hammond (Melbourne) and H.C.E. Childers. Letter from J.B. Were; sends letters from R.Childers in N.S.W. and Queensland; family news; return of R. Childers to Melbourne in 1886; financial trouble; return of R. Childers to England. [February 1879-October 1886]

Correspondence between B. Jowett and H.C.E. Childers; Includes allegations that Rowland Childers cheated at cards while undergraduate at Balliol. [March 1879]

Correspondence between Spencer Childers and H.C.E. Childers; Relates to debts of Rowland. Childers and his return to England. [January-July 1886]