2nd Edition of The Cossticks Available Now

The Cossticks 1700-1900 2nd Edition available now

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9. Sam Cosstick and Annie Shove

Samuel Cosstick was born in Croydon, Surrey, on 1 January 1836 and baptized on 7 February in the same year . He arrived in Adelaide on board the Star Queen on 30 December 1854 and soon moved to Melbourne.

The 836 ton Government emigrant ship, Star Queen, with 368 English passengers, arrived at the Lightship Anchorage, off Largs Bay, from where its passengers disembarked on Saturday 30 December 1854 .

The ninety-day voyage had seen thirteen cases of cholera, one of which was fatal, nine other deaths, mainly of infants and children, and eight births. Thus, leaving Southampton on 1 October 1854 with 370 passengers the ship lost ten of its passengers but gained eight new ones, and arrived at Adelaide with 368.

Among the original 370 were ninety married couples, twenty-eight single women, thirty-nine single men, sixty-two boys under fourteen, forty-four girls under fourteen, and seventeen infants aged less than twelve months. Of the ten passengers who died one girl was aged eight and another seven under two years of age .

On Monday 1st January 1855 the South Australian Register reported that

The Star Queen . . . . an 836 ton 3 masted ship, built in 1854, Sunderland, 161.0x32.0x20.3, J. Shepherd, London.
Arrived from Southampton on the 29th December, having made the voyage in ninety days. Ten deaths and eight births occurred at sea. The emigrants in this ship also were well selected. The matron, appointed in England, was superseded for incompetency and another appointed by the surgeon superintendent in her room. Diarrhoea prevailed to a considerable extent throughout the voyage. The ship as well as the bedding and persons of the emigrants were clean and tidy. One case of malignant cholera occurred the day after the ship sailed, and proved fatal in five hours. No other case of cholera is reported after the sailing of the ship, through dysentery and fever prevailed more or less throughout the voyage. The steward of the ship charges against the quantity of medical comforts laid in according to the charter party, twelve bottles of porter, five bottles of brandy and two bottles of wine, delivered and consumed by persons visiting the ship on Government account. This, if it be correct is a very improper mode of disposing of stores intended for the relief of the sick while at sea. The surgeon-superintendent suggests that the fore hatchway should be covered with close iron grating, locked down and that this hatchway should not be allowed as a means of communication with the between decks. Many of the married women are disposed to have communication with the sailors and this fore hatchway affords far too ready a means of access to the forecastle, and from the forecastle to the emigrants’ apartments. This suggestion seems so proper that I think it ought to be immediately adopted. The main and after hatchway are sufficient for all necessary communication with the deck. The after ventilator, which communicates with the single womens' apartments, is used as a means of transmitting letters to and from the single girls. The remedy to this is simple and inexpensive; a fine wire grating at the centre of the shaft will prevent all communication, and not interfere in the slightest degree with the ventilation. So constant are the complaints made by the surgeon superintendents of the facilities thus afforded of communication with the single women, that it appears desirable that the evil should be immediately rectified.

Once the passengers of the Star Queen had been disembarked, probably by one of the steam tugs operating at the port, Captain Manning set about disposing of the cargo. His task was not made any easier by the desertion of nine seamen late on Saturday night. The South Australian Register carried the story.

UNCOMMONLY POLITE. - Nine seamen belonging to the Star Queen managed to escape on Saturday night from that ship as she lay at the Lightship Anchorage. At a late hour of the night, when none but themselves, or some who connived at their desertion, were on deck, they noiselessly launched one of the boats, and made for the shore. But whilst they acted on the maxim “self first and neighbour afterwards”, they seemed averse to any disregard of ceremony, and accordingly left a polite note, in which they informed the captain that he would find his boat at the Flagstaff (near the Semaphore Hotel), but that they hoped he would not again be troubled by them. They were, however, afterwards tempted to alter their course, or were obliged to do so by the weather, for the boat has not yet been found. The police at the Port spread themselves over the Peninsula when information of this desertion reached them.

The Star Queen remained at the Lightship anchorage until Thursday 4 January when it moved further up the harbour, but remained “in the stream” rather than taking a berth at one of the docks . On 17 January the ships agents had to advertise for the consignees of 200 tons of coal to come and collect their cargo - the ship was due to sail within a few days. On 21 January the Star Queen left Port Adelaide bound for Point de Galle.

In the meantime it is not known what Samuel Cosstick did after arriving in Adelaide. The passenger list does not give any clues as to whether he had come out with friends or family. Although all the passengers are named we do not know the names of his friends.

Family legend has it that he soon left Adelaide and walked to Melbourne, which would not have been unusual in those times.

Samuel Cosstick may have visited Amherst but appears to have taken little interest in the goldfields. His main interest was cricket.

A cricket match between a team representing the English Counties of Kent and Surrey and a team representing ‘Other Counties’ was held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Saturday 6 December 1856. On the Kent and Surrey team was a player by the name of Coulstock . Coulstock appeared again a few weeks later playing for Richmond in a match between the Melbourne and Richmond Cricket Clubs on Friday 26 December at the MCG. He was the main Richmond bowler – giving a total of 90 balls for 26 runs and 4 wickets in the first innings, and 72 balls for 35 runs and 6 wickets in the second innings .

We might be tempted to assume that Coulstock, was in fact Sam Cosstick , or the man from Surrey, as many came to know him .

By 1859, while Henry, William, John and Charles were at Amherst, Sam was playing cricket regularly for the Richmond Cricket Club. His brother George joined him in a number of matches, such as both playing for the Richmond Second Eleven against a Scotch College team, including Wilkie, in November 1859 . In a match between Richmond and Corio in January 1860 George Cosstick was regarded as the “head scorer” for Richmond . A match between a Victorian Eleven and the Richmond Tradesman’s Club saw Sam playing for the Victorian side and George for the Richmond team . A few days later George played for Richmond against Abbotsford , and at the end of January both George and Sam played in a team against a Victorian Eleven .

Sam Cosstick developed a reputation as a good, if sometimes dangerous, bowler. He played against Heathfield Stephenson’s visiting English team during the 1860-61 season and in January 1861 the Melbourne Cricket Club hired Sam because of his reputation . His job at the club was to maintain the ground and to play in club matches as necessary. He was also to act as bowler at practise matches each afternoon between 2.30 and 7.00 pm. He was paid £3/10/- per week . He later earned over £7 per week .
The rest of this chapter is in the book.


Full references and sources are available for this information and are published in the book. Please email me if you would like source references.

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