# 30759

[HOY, S. G.]; WARD, E.

[CHINESE IN AUSTRALIA] Telegram addressed to Sydney merchant S. G. Hoy advising of the arrival of boxes of opium at the New England mining township of Tingha, New South Wales, September 1879.

  • Sold

[Sydney]. New South Wales Electric Telegraph. Colonial and Intercolonial Lines. Telegram form. 218 x 213 mm, printed in orange on blue paper with manuscript entries in ink recording a message received from Tingha Station on 1 September 1879, addressed to S. G. Hoy, 315 Cumberland Street, Sydney, from E. Ward, Tingha: ‘Received two telegram and three Boxes opium have arrived’; old folds with short tears at edges, otherwise in very good condition.

Tin was discovered just to the south of Inverell on the northern tablelands in the early 1870s, and the area was soon the site of a “rush”. The first tin mining settlement was originally known as Armidale Crossing, but its name officially became Tingha in 1872. It is estimated that at the height of the rush, a quarter of the 6000 miners on the diggings were Chinese. The story of the Chinese miners in the area is an important part of Tingha’s history, and their heritage is preserved in the local Wing Hing Long Museum.

The present document alludes to a business transaction between Sydney Chinese merchant, S. G. Hoy, and E. Ward, a merchant at Tingha, which involved the supply of a substantial quantity of opium, presumably largely intended for the Chinese miners in the Tingha area.

S. G. Hoy was quite possibly a relation of Tingha resident G. G. Hoy; a photograph of G. G. Hoy and his daughter, Ivy, can be found on the website of the Chinese Museum ( https://www.chia.chinesemuseum.com.au/objects/D001259.htm )