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National Trust Willunga branch.

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National Trust of South Australia


Dawe, Sampson

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Fast Facts
Type of person Individual
Date of birth 1813
Place of birth Coombhill, Stoke in Devon, England
Date of arrival 1840
Principal occupation Quarryman, quarry owner and land owner.
Date of death 1879
Place of decease Delabole near Willunga, South Australia

Quarryman, quarry owner and land owner. Alternative spelling Daw / Daws / Dawes. Religion – Church of England.

Sampson Dawe was born at Coombhill, Stoke in Devon. He was baptised in the parish of Samford Spiney in Devon, England on 9 March 1813. He was the son of John Dawe (1782-1856) and Elizabeth Rundell (abt 1774-1839). He was the older brother of Henry Dawe (1816-1849) and the cousin of William Dawe (1814-1850).

Sampson married Jane Elizabeth Gregory (1817-22/03/1882) and they had at least five children (two sons and three daughters):

Elizabeth Wilkinson (1840 – 1867) b. in Devon, m. Georg H.W. Schunke 05 Jan1865 at Trinity Church, Adelaide

John Henry (1844 –1907) b. & d. at Willunga, unmarried

Tabitha (1846 – 1856) b. & d. at Willunga, died aged 10 years

Ellenor “Jane” (1849 - 1902) b. at Willunga, m. Georg H.W. Schunke on 7 June 1868 at the residence of Sampson Dawe near Willunga

William (1853 – 1854) b. & d. at Willunga, died as an infant

Sampson Dawe (26) with his wife Jane Elizabeth (23) and their infant daughter Elizabeth, and his cousin William (25) with his wife Mary Anne (21) and their infant son William Henry, left Gravesend on 5 March 1840 and arrived on 17 June 1840 on board the 453-ton barque Charles Kerr, Captain Arnold, from London, Gravesend, and Deal to Port Adelaide.

By sometime in late 1840 Sampson Dawe owned half a town allotment (lot 281) facing St. John’s Terrace in Section 700 (Beltunga) – his neighbor in lot 281 was Thomas Polkinghorne. Sampson Dawe was the manager of Loud’s quarry just outside Willunga from 1840. Subsequently in 1841 he found slate on his own property of 207 acres in sections 758 and 1150 (later called the Delabole quarry). He sold Section 1150 in Dec 1861 to John Allen, farmer of Willunga for 475 pounds.

On 28 August 1845 Sampson Dawe and Thomas Polkinghorne took up the lease for Martin’s quarry on 35 acres of section 1008 near Willunga. He also held a timber license in 1845/6. Sampson Dawe was an active member of the Anglican church of St. Stephen’s including serving as a Churchwarden in 1849. When his brother Henry died in 1849, Sampson, assumed responsibility for his widow and their newly born son, Henry, and when his cousin William Dawe died in 1850 he also became responsible for his widow and six more children. In his later years (after about 1860), Sampson Dawe was sometimes known as Sampson Dawe senior to distinguish him from his nephew Sampson Dawe junior (1841-1911) who was a blacksmith in St Andrews Terrace

Sampson Dawe, aged 66 years, died on 22 Nov 1879 at Delabole near Willunga and he was buried at St. Stephen’s Anglican Cemetery at Willunga.


  • Passengers in History Database – South Australian Maritime Museum
  • SA Census 1841
  • South Australian Births – Index of Registrations 1842-1906
  • South Australian Marriages – Index of Registrations 1842-1937
  • South Australian Deaths – Index of Registrations 1842-1972
  • Ratepayer List Willunga & Aldinga Councils 1850-1888
  • Adelaide Observer 16 Aug 1845:1
  • Adelaide Observer 23 May 1846:4
  • Adelaide Observer 8 Oct 1847:5
  • Adelaide Observer 21 April 1849:e
  • Adelaide Observer 26 July 1856:5
  • Family Histories. D. Manuscript folder held by the National Trust (Willunga Branch). Blue folder 40-4
  • South Australian 26 Sept 1845:2
  • South Australian Advertiser 18 Nov 1858:3
  • South Australian Register 24 Nov 1849:2
  • South Australian Register 5 April 1850:3
  • South Australian Register 5 April 1872:3
  • South Australian Register 16 May 1877:2
  • The Express and Telegraph 27 Nov 1879:2
Sampson and Jane Dawe, St Stephen's cemetery, Willunga
Sampson and Jane Dawe, St Stephen's cemetery, Willunga

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