Bell’s Life in Sydney and Sporting Chronicle (NSW : 1860 – 1870), Saturday 15 April 1865, page 2


In the prime of life—but 34 years of age—and in the midst of a career of usefulness, has died Sir Frederick Pottinger, as genial hearted, affectionate, and charitable a man as ever lived. Sir Frederick on his way from Forbes to Sydney about a month ago, unfortunately was severely wounded by the accidental discharge of his revolver at Wascoe’s “Pilgrim Inn,” Lapstone Hill, on the far-famed and wild Blue Mountains. When able to be removed, he was brought to the Victoria Club (Sydney), and received all possible care and attention from his medical adviser; indeed with so much success that the bullet was extracted from the wound, and Sir Frederick was pronounced convalescent. Unhappily, by one of those strange changes which characterise this kind of wounding, inflammation set in, and on Sunday last, about 2 o’clock in the afternoon, he died.

Sir Frederick was the son of Sir Henry Pottinger, Bart., so eminently distinguished in India. The deceased gentleman (Sir F.) entered the army while very young — the Guards; and anyone knowing anything of that fine regiment, must admit, with all its gallantry, the fast life it leads. However, Sir Frederick sold out, and came to Australia, tempted at the time with its character of being a fine country for dazzling prospects. He failed to find the employment which one of his attainments might have expected ; but with the courage always his, he obtained the humble appointment of trooper in the Mounted Police, and acted as such, a long time with Captain Zouch of Goulburn.

He was then appointed Clerk of Petty Sessions at Dubbo, where he was universally esteemed, but on the passing of the new Police Act he was made an Inspector of Police and was stationed at Forbes, close by the nucleus of bushranging. It is as familiar as household words, how he put down crime in that quarter, and how his name was a terror to evil doers there. His was a triumph of usefulness not only from the fear of him by the criminals, but for his hearty sociability everywhere. His enemies, if any, were very few, his friends were legion. Good-tempered, clever, and thoroughly charitable, he gained the hearts of all.

He was fond of writing, and to kill the dull monotony of his Dubbo life, was in the habit of writing for a Bathurst and local journal. Some gems of poetry under the soubriquet of “Wussa Australiana,” may be familiar to some of our readers. The Crown will miss in him a valuable and gallant officer, his friends a warm and kind companion, the country a good man. We sometimes find out the excellencies of a character after death, and so it will be now. Many who rebuked his warmth of heart and scoffed at his gallant bearing, will now — we venture to assert, at least to hope — say of him who is gone.

Nil nisi bonum.

This lamented gentleman was buried on Tuesday morning. The cortege, consisting of the hearse, three mourning coaches, and the carriages of several of our leading citizens, moved from the Victoria Club, at half-past nine o’clock, and proceeded to the Randwick cemetery, where the last rites of the Church of England were solemnised. Amongst those assembled to pay the last mark of respect to the deceased baronet, were the Hon. the Premier; the Hon. the President of the Legislative Council; the Hon. the Secretary for Works; the Hon. T. Icely, M.L.C.; Mr Egan, M.L.A.; Mr Stimpson, M.L.A.; Mr Pickering, M.L.A,; The Inspector General of Police; Mr G. F. Wise; His Honor, Judge Carey; Mr Morrissett, Superintendent of Police; the Surveyor-General; the Sheriff; the Water Police Magistrate; Major Wingate; Mr Mitchell, and many private friends. The late baronet is succeeded in his title by his brother, now Sir Henry Pottinger, a barrister in England, and a gentleman of considerable literary attainments.


  1. Old Freddy was “famous” for being the famous Blind Freddy of folklore after being at a race meeting where Ben Hall and his mates were in attendance and Freddy didn’t see them, but everyone else knew they were there!

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