Name Variations alias GOBY, BOGY, BOGEE, BOGEL or BOYCE
Father Joseph GOBY or GOBEY b. 1790 m. (1) unknown (2) none d. 1876
Step-father Thomas WILLIAMS b.c. 18201 m. (3) 18582 d.
Mother Jane GILL b. m. (2) none (3) 18583 d.
Step-mother Mary b.c. 17964 m. (1) unknown d.
Inmate Annie Gill GOBY aka WILLIAMS b. 18545 m. 1873 (see below) d. 19416
Brother William James WILLIAMS b. 18627 m. d.
Brother Edwin WILLIAMS b. 18638 m. d.
Sister Catherine Ellen WILLIAMS b. 18669 m. d.
Brother Arthur WILLIAMS b. 186710 m. d.
Brother William Thomas WILLIAMS b. 186811 m. d.
Husband Thomas Henry WALTERS aka Tony12 MATTS13 b. 1851 m. 187314 d. 191215
Son Charles Henry WALTER b. 187616 m. d. 1953
Son Thomas James WALTER b. 187717 m. 190218 Helen Rose DUNN d. 195219
Daughter Ada Emily WALTER b. 188020 m. 190221 Joseph MACHON d. 194522
Son Henry Clay WALTERS b. 188423 m. d.
Son Emanuel Bishop WALTERS b. 188824 m. d. 1965
WARNING: Details of the early life of Annie Gill GOBY aka Ann WILLIAMS may cause distress to descendants.

Ann's life before her admission to Newcastle is unpleasant and indicative of the dire circumstances faced by children without the benefit of the Child Protection laws that would eventually be passed in NSW. Newspapers outlined the circumstances of her removal from her unnamed mother and her step-father, Thomas WILLIAMS. Ann took Thomas to court, charging him with raping her on 26 January 1869, at Grenfell. Thomas was arrested25 at O'Brien's Reef and was tried in the Bathurst Circuit Court in April 1869. The crime was described in the newspapers in very strong terms of almost inconceivable 'depravity' and 'unfit for publication.'26 Ann’s mother was reported to have known that the incident was occurring in the adjoining room and had done nothing to stop the situation or to protect Ann.

[O]nly one witness (the prosecutrix) was examined. The evidence given disclosed a state of things truly revolting. The prisoner, a man about 45 or 50 years of age, had been for months living with his step-daughter, a girl of 14 years of age, and that too with the cognisance of his wife, the girl's mother; but as no evidence was produced to show that the girl was an unwilling party, the jury, almost without deliberation, returned a verdict of not guilty. His Honor, when discharging the prisoner, said that his conduct was disgraceful, and although he was not found guilty of the charge preferred against him, it ought to make him bow his head with shame, and his wife ought to be imprisoned for life.27

Thomas was eventually discharged as it was successfully proved in court that Ann had had consensual sex with other men and that nine months before 26 January 1869,28 had had consensual sex with him. This consensual incident had occurred before the family had arrived in Grenfell. Ann's deposition makes graphic and unpleasant reading. She had resorted to taking a knife to bed with her but her mother had taken the knife from her on the night that the incident occurred. The deposition named other men with whom Ann had been intimate and also added the information that prior to the attack by her step-father, Ann had been in the service of Mr. NOAKES at the Prussian Reef.29 The consensual incidents with other men began after a rape had occurred.30 Unfortunately the deposition does not identify Ann's mother by name. Nor do the records of Ann's admission to Newcastle or in any correspondence in the CSIL.

From 4 February 1969, Ann was held in Bathurst Gaol until the next circuit court as for 'refusing to enter into a recognisance as a witness'. Her place of birth was clearly recorded as South Australia.31 After Thomas's trial Ann was arrested by senior sergeant WATERS of Bathurst Police under a warrant issued under the Industrial Schools Act. While Ann was charged under the act with having no visible lawful means of support, there is very little doubt that this charge was an attempt by the Bathurst police and magistrates to remove her from a situation of danger. She was identified in the Police Gazette as Ann WILLIAMS alias BOGEE.32 She was tried in Bathurst Court and was eventually transferred from the gaol to Newcastle.33 She was admitted to the industrial school on 19 March 1869. The Entrance Book provided two almost illegible aliases recorded by CLARKE – possibly GOBY and BOGEL or BOYCE.34 LUCAS interpreted the spelling of the second of these aliases as BOGLE and ignored the first in his transcription of the one complete list of inmates in existence.35 Fortunately, the Bathurst trial deposition clearly indicated on at least three occasions that Ann's alias was GOBY.36 On her admission to Newcastle Ann was recorded as able to read and write. She was a Protestant. Her father was recorded as dead and her mother, whose given name wasn’t provided, was recorded as 'married again to a man named WILLIAMS.'37

On 13 October 1870, after about fifteen months in the school, CLARKE requested permission from the Colonial Secretary to apprentice Ann and permission was given to send her to Mr George MULLEN or MULLIN of Murrurundi for two years at the rate of five shillings a week for the first year and six shillings weekly for the second year. Ann therefore did not transfer with the school to Biloela. CLARKE wrote that 'Williams is about sixteen years of age and in every way eligible for service'38 very strongly suggesting that Ann was a co-operative and willing inmate. She was therefore not involved in any of the rioting at the school as she was admitted after the 1868 riot and discharged before any that occurred in 1871. Ann's apprenticeship would have concluded in about October 1872 – although it is unknown whether it was completed.

After her admission to Newcastle it is also unknown whether she maintained any contact with her mother and step-father. It is possible that some type of communication may have occurred as a man named Thomas Henry WALTERS, the same name and age to have been Annie's husband, was tried in Bathurst in 1904 for the theft of shirts.39

The research of Ann's descendants confirmed that after she left her apprenticeship, she reverted to her original surname. She was old enough at the time of her admission to Newcastle to remember this surname and would very likely have wanted to forget the difficult part of her past that had prompted her arrest in 1868. In 1873 she was in Sydney where, as Ann GOBY, she married Thomas Henry WALTERS. One In Memoriam notice provided the alternate name of Tony MATTS to Thomas.40 The couple registered births of four sons and a daughter. As Annie WALTERS, she died in late September 1941 and was buried in the Church of England Cemetery, Manly.41 She outlived her husband by about 30 years. Annie's registration on the NSW BDM Index identified that her parents were Thomas and Jane.


All records connected with Ann identified that she had been born in about 1855 but the difficulties in correctly identifying her alias, recorded so variously in easily accessible records, made tracking her difficult. In addition to the names recorded in the Entrance Book, the Police Gazette recorded the spelling of Ann's surname as BOGEE.42 The actual depositions of her step-father's trial are not online and are held in Kingswood. Ann and Thomas were taken in the Grenfell Police Office in order to appear at the approaching Bathurst Court appearance. These records clearly recorded her surname as GOBY.43 On the return of female prisoners of Bathurst Gaol, after her imprisonment whilst awaiting her trial, her place of birth was identified as South Australia and this gaol record also confirmed her alias of GOBY. The birth registration on 13 November 1854, in Adelaide, South Australia, for Ann Gill GOBEY who was born in Hindmarsh, South Australia and whose parents were Joseph GOBEY and Jane GILL44 is an exact match for the Newcastle admission where the state of birth, the age and the surname of GOBY are correct. This birth has therefore been attributed to her. The original registration has not been viewed but it was almost certainly an illegitimate record as no marriage for Joseph GOBY or GOBEY and Jane GILL has been identified.

Joseph's arrival in South Australia has not been identified. He died as Joseph GOBEY in 1876 and he was recorded as 'in his 87th year'. He had therefore been born in about 1790 and had been at least 60 when Annie was born. Funeral Notices and obituaries identified that he was a Chelsea Pensioner.45 His age does not match that of the Tasmanian convict of the same name. Joseph was living at Hindmarsh at the time of Ann's birth but remained there after Jane and Ann left South Australia. No wife or daughter was named in his obituary and no birth record for any other child has been located in South Australia although descendants identify that he had formerly been married in England to Mary COOPER.

It is difficult to identify Jane GILL as it is unknown whether she was called GILL or McGILL. She was not the Tasmanian convict of this name as this woman died in 1851. Jane probably arrived into South Australia and she had to have been in this state by 1853. A Jane McGILL arrived in South Australia in June 1852 aboard the emigrant ship Standard leaving London and Plymouth on 6 March with 287 Government emigrants.46 South Australian immigration records need to be checked to identify any further background on this immigrant as it may assist in confirming this identification. It may be that this arrival was Ann's mother. In 1858 in Victoria, three years after Ann's birth, Jane GILL married Thomas WILLIAMS. This record has not been viewed. No births have been confirmed for Jane and Thomas in either NSW but some possible Victorian births have been attributed to them. These births have not been confirmed or cited. It is unknown when Thomas and Jane and their family arrived in NSW but newspapers stated in 1869 that Thomas 'had for months been living with his step daughter'47 and as the couple had been married for over a decade by this date this statement probably referred to the connection between Ann and Thomas. Unpublished court papers indicated that the family had moved to Grenfell from some other unidentified location by about May 1868. Bathurst papers for this period do not appear on Trove but it is unknown whether they are missing or not yet scanned.

Ann's step-father, Thomas WILLIAMS, was reported to be between forty and fifty years of age at the time of his trial in 1868. He was clearly a prospector and his former locations of Lambing Flat, O'Brien's Reef, Prussian Reef and the Tyajory[?]48 are identified in the trial depositions. The Bathurst gaol record for this man from 4 February 1869, provided no identifying information and other entries in the Bathurst records for a man of this name have not been able to be linked to Ann's step-father.

Updated March 2016

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License