HANNIBAL EDWARDS (1842 - 1923)

Hannibal Edwards was born in Ludgvan, Cornwall, England, most likely on 25th January 1842 and was christened there in May that year. Little is known of his life before coming to Australia but it is believed he was a miner in Cornwall - the occupation he was to pursue for his entire life.

At the age of twenty-two, he traveled on the ship "Golden Empire" for 140 days from Liverpool, England to Port Phillip, Victoria.

He probably never learned to read or write. This is evident, when in 1873 he married Mary Jane Matthews and didn't sign his name on the marriage certificate. Instead it bears "his mark" - a cross, witnessed by the officiating Wesleyan minister. The marriage was performed in Hannibal's residence at Eldorado in north-east Victoria.

The previous year, Mary came from Cornwall to Australia with her family, who settled at Bontherambo near Eldorado as pastoralists.

While in Eldorado, their first three children were born; William Henry in 1874, Mary Jane Martins in 1876, and James Albert in 1878. Then before 1880 the family moved to the neighbouring town of Chiltern.

Three more children were born in Chiltern. Firstly Rubeania was born in 1880. Then in 1882, following the death the year before of their second child at the age of three, James Albert was born and named after the deceased child. Twins, Osborne and Emiline were born in 1885 and their last child, Leana Jane was born in 1887.

Hannibal a big man, who like many of the time sported a beard, lived the first seven years of the twentieth century near Dillion's bridge in West Chiltern. By 1909 he had moved down the Chiltern valley in close proximity to the No. 2 Mine. As an old man, he kept a few hens and was known to complain that he received such a low price for selling a dozen eggs that it wasn't worth the wear on the hens.

He passed away after two months of illness in the Wangaratta Hospital and was buried in the Wangaratta Cemetery at the age of eighty-one in 1923.


Chiltern                          1

EDWARDS Hannibal                1

EDWARDS James Albert            1

EDWARDS Mary Jane               1

EDWARDS Rubeania                1

EDWARDS William Henry           1

Eldorado                        1

Golden Empire" (ship)           1

Ludgvan, Cornwall, England      1

MATTHEWS Mary Jane              1