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The issue of gentlemen : the fortunes of James Mills, James Henry Mills and their descendants / Sue Reid. (First.)
Call No: A6/MIL/20
Author: Reid, Sue, author. ;
Publisher: [Fig Tree Pocket, Queensland] : Sue Reid, 2020
Subject: Mills, Clara. ; Mills, James, 1774-1846. ; Mills, James Henry. ; Mills family. ; Family history, tracing ancestors. ; Women immigrants - Australia Biography. ; Australia - Emigration and immigration - 19th century. ; England Genealogy. ; Australia Genealogy. ; Australia - family history ; Australia ;
Material Type: Book
Pagination: ix, 375 pages, 11 pages of plates : illustrations (some colour), facsimiles (some colour), genealogi
Edition: First.
Notes: Includes index
Includes bibliographical references (pages 309-345) and index.
Public Note: Donated by Sue Reid
Summary: In 1856, twenty-one-year-old Clara Mills sailed from England for the colony of Victoria to seek work as a governess. Clara was a well-educated, middle-class woman, but one of limited means. As she had no family in the Australian colonies and no travelling companions, the fact that she left her family, and her native land is remarkable. This book gives some context to her decision to immigrate by providing insights into the lives her grandfather and her father. Clara's grandfather, James Mills, a sawyer from the tiny village of Kirdford, West Sussex, joined the Sussex Militia in late 1798 when Britain was under threat of attack from Napoleon. He became a sergeant in the Militia and traveled widely through England. Once free of his military commitments, he grasped the opportunity to become a successful property dealer and developer in Brighton when the town was becoming most fashionable. James built a row of houses in Hove, named Mills Terrace. He was prominent in his community and was styled a gentleman. His only surviving son, James Henry Mills, though initially successful as a property broker, auctioneer, and appraiser, sullied his reputation by committing electoral bribery. James Henry experienced financial difficulties and filed for bankruptcy in 1850. Less than scrupulous as a trustee for his father's estate, he exploited his daughters' inheritance from their grandfather. His monetary difficulties continued, and he was forced to live in the working-class area of Brighton. Eventually he could no longer fend off his creditors and was imprisoned as a debtor for 571 days in the Sussex County Gaol. He was embittered by his fall from grace and sought retribution through many petulant court actions before the Brighton Magistrates. When he died in 1873, his estate was valued at a mere 163,200. However, James Henry, too, styled himself as a gentleman.The book tells the stories of these men, their lives and social settings in Brighton and Hove, and the lives of their descendants both in Australia and in England, who have not emulated the behaviour of James Henry Mills.

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