Home List of Burials (Alphabetical Order) List of Burials (Death Date Order)
The New South Wales Gold rush is described in a Wikipedia article:
The find [at Ophir] was proclaimed on 14 May 1851 and within days the first Australian gold rush began with 100 diggers searching for their gold. By June there were over 2000 people digging around Bathurst, and thousands more were on their way. In 1852, the yield was 850,000 ounces (24½ tonnes). The Great Western Road to Bathurst became choked with men from all walks of life, with all they could carry to live and mine. The newspaper 'Bathurst Free Press' reported on 17 May 1851: 'A complete mental madness appears to have seized almost every member of the community. There has been a universal rush to the diggings.'
Inevitably, there were deaths on the diggings, both accidental and from natural causes. This internet page focuses on deaths recorded for people who lived in the localities below at the time of death, or who were buried at a cemetery in the area. The names of all of these locations are included because it has not always been possible to ascertain where the person lived at the time of death and/or where he/she was actually buried. Further, it seems that a number of the headstones, located in the cemeteries covered here, are merely memorials to people buried elsewhere. It is necessary to refer to the individual entry for a particular person to decide whether the person is actually buried in the cemetery. Links to the alphabetical and death-date lists are provided at the top of this page.
It should be noted that the General, Anglican and Catholic Cemeteries for the Hill/End/Tambaroora area are all located closer to Tambaroora, on the Mudgee Road, approximately three kilometres from Hill End.
Cemeteries/Localities referred to in the death records included on this internet site.
Primary Sources of Information
1. (PDF-Vol 1) Sofala Parish Register
Volume 1 of the Church of England Sofala Parish Baptism, Marriage and Burial register, covering the period 27 November 1851 to 17 March 1861 was located in a collection of material held by the State Library of New South Wales. It is believed to have been deposited there in the 1980s by the National Parks & Wildlife Service along with a number of other records associated with Hill End and not correctly identified until recently.
2. (SLNSW) Microfilm records for Anglican Diocese of Bathurst at State Library of New South Wales
Burial Registers for Tambaroora/Hill End and Sofala Cemeteries, 1861 to 1973.
3. (ACI Hill End/Tambaroora, ACI Sofala, ACI Wattle Flat, ACI Turondale, ACI Sallys Flat) Headstone Transcriptions at Australian Cemeteries Index (ACI), covering graves in the Hill End (sic), Sofala and Wattle Flat and Turondale cemeteries.
These are not always accurate as it was sometimes difficult for transcribers to decipher the information.
4. (BDM) Death Registration Records at the NSW Births Deaths and Marriages site. See Note, below.
These records seem to refer to burials at Hill End/Tambaroora, Sofala, and Wattle Flat, but for which no record is present from one of the three sources above. The records were extracted by entering "Hill End" and "Tambaroora" and "Sofala" and "Wattle Flat" in the "District where the event was registered" section of the Death Search Form. One cannot be sure that the person was buried at Hill End simply because the death was registered in that place, but it is a starting point from which further inquiries might be made.
It should be noted that no Burial Registers for the Catholic Cemetery at Tambaroora or the Chinese Cemetery at Tambaroora have been located. No doubt many of the names in this section relate to people who were buried in these two cemeteries.
Where possible, a Birth Deaths and Marriages (BDM) reference has been included for each entry in the full list. Where a BDM reference cannot be found it might indicate that the death was not registered, or that the BDM made an error in keying in the details of the death, so that we cannot now locate it. Further, in the case of the ACI entries, which were initially compiled by ACI volunteers, by transcribing names from the headstones, it might mean that one or more of the persons named on the headstone was buried elsewhere and that the name is being recorded simply as a memorial, or that the name has been transcribed incorrectly because it is difficult to decipher.
The first two deaths, supported by entries at the New South Wales Birth Deaths and Marriages internet site, were those of George Henry Bradburn, the son of a gold miner, and John Burgess, a carrier who was found drowned in Turon River. Both died on 22 November 1851.
Please note that I have no other information about any of the people named on the list of burials. This site represents my best effort at gathering together all burials in the Hill End-Tambaroora and District area. If you have further particulars or wish to advise of possible errors in the information provided here, please contact me. Colin Choat.
Note regarding BDM records
It should be noted that the Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages (BDM) was only established in 1856. Before that, the Burial Registers of the churches were used BDM to create the Registry entries. The following information appears on the Registry internet site
Compulsory civil registration began in 1856. In accordance with the governing Act, the NSW Government established a number of district registrars responsible for the compulsory registration of all births, deaths and marriages occurring in their district. Since then, there have been some changes in legislation and technology that have affected day-to-day practices, but the original approach to registration and the methodologies employed remain relatively unchanged...
...From 1788 to 1856 the only birth, death or marriage records kept in NSW were the registers maintained by the established churches. The Registry holds transcriptions of these early church records. Any surviving original registers are located in the NSW Archives.
Unfortunately, the extant records for this period are not comprehensive. Some ministers, missionaries and other authorised administrators kept records but not all were in a position to be this diligent. In addition many of the records contain inaccuracies and bad spelling. Distances to town centres, distrust of authority and lack of participation in formal church services contributed to the church registration system's inability to record adequately the details of all births, deaths and marriages that occurred in NSW..."
Bark Church of England, Hill End-Tambaroora Cemetery c.1875 (Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales, IE1246638)