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National Trust Willunga branch.

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National Trust of South Australia


Foreman, James

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Fast Facts
Type of person Individual
Date of birth 1825
Place of birth Port Sorrell, Tasmania (then called Van Diemen's Land)
Date of arrival 1846
Principal occupation Ploughman
Date of death 1857
Place of decease Willunga

James Foreman was born in Port Sorrell, Tasmania on 25 May 1825. He was the son of John Foreman (1769-1829) and Jane (née Bowbanks) (1784-1840) and the older brother of George Daniel Foreman (1827-1903). Religion – Anglican.

James Foreman, aged 21 years, arrived from Hobart, Tasmania on 4 April 1846 aboard the 123 ton schooner Timbo. James was a ploughman at Willunga. He won the inaugural Willunga Ploughing contest in July 1848 and was awarded a silver medal.

James, aged 26 years, married Jane Richards Polkinghorne, aged 20 years, (1831-1861) at St Stephen’s Anglican Church in Willunga on 1 May 1851. She was the daughter of Richard Polkinghorne (1818-1875). They had four children, all born at Willunga:

  • William James (1852-1898) born at Willunga, married Sarah Esther Creber (1856-1906) on 7 April 1875 at Adelaide. They had 11 children. He was a Cab proprietor at Goodwood. died at Adelaide.
  • John (1853-1916) born at Willunga, married Annie Cant (1856-1916) on 24 May 1880 at Nailsworth. They had 7 children, died at Goodwood & buried in West Terrace Cemetery.
  • Richard George (1855-1938) born at Willunga, married Hannah Selina Gentry (1852-1926) at the Bible Christian Chapel at Allendale, SA on 17 Feb 1875. They had 11 children. They lived in Unley, Fremantle, WA and Hawthorn, Victoria, died at Adelaide
  • Mary Jane (1858-1942) born at Willunga, married John Humphrys (1855-1932) at Willunga 8 March 1879. They had eight children, died at Adelaide.

James Foreman died at the early age of 32 years on 12 Dec 1857, leaving his widow Jane with 4 children under 6 years. His youngest daughter, Mary Jane, was born a month after his death. He is buried in the Wesleyan Methodist (Uniting) Church Cemetery, Willunga.

Jane Foreman, aged 30 years, died on 24 Dec 1861 leaving their four children, all under 10, orphaned.


  • Passengers in History Database – South Australian Maritime Museum
  • 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
  • Family Histories. B. Manuscript folder held by the National Trust (Willunga Branch). Blue folder 40-7
  • Statton J. (ed) 1986. Biographical Index of South Australians 1836-1885. Volume 2

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