James Tappin

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James Tappin Grave, Boorondara Cemetery, Photograph: Lisa J. Gervasoni


The son of Henry Tappin and Jane (née Powers), he was probably born in Shropshire. He married Rose Ann Doran and the couple came to Victoria in 1853 on the Marco Polo. He arrived on the Canadian Gully where many thousand diggers were in a feverish state of excitement owing to the large deposits of gold being found in the claims. He decided to locate a store on Sinclair Hill in Ballarat East, amongst the diggers tents. He had a slab sided stores erected about 30 by 20 feet, and about 10 feet at the rear being curtained off for a bedroom and dining room. The chimney was constructed of sod. The whole of the store cost 25 pounds, with the carpenters being paid 25 shillings per day. They were living at Ballarat during the lead-up to the Eureka uprising.[1]

James Tappin died in 1917 aged 89, and was buried at Boroondara Cemetery on 11 May 1917. Anne Tappin and Mary Jane Tappin are buried in the same grave.[2]

Goldfields Involvement, 1854

Tappin was a participant in the Eureka battle. In 1854 he had a store in Clayton’s Hill. He signed a Petition of householders of Ballaarat requesting the establishment of a Municipality in 1855. He took part in the 50th Anniversary celebrations in 1904 in Ballarat, and in that year he was living in Kew, Victoria. He was one of those who wrote of his involvement during the 1904 anniversaryHis reminiscences are told in the book Eureka Reminiscences.[3]

Post 1854 Experiences

In the News

...(Schedule filed at Ballarat.) James Tappin, of Ballarat, grocer. Causes of insolvency - Want of employment, sickness in family, and losses when in business as a grocer in Geelong. Debts, £242 6s, 6d. ; assets, £6 ; deficiency, £236 6s. 6d.[4]

See also

Further Reading

Corfield, J.,Wickham, D., & Gervasoni, C. The Eureka Encyclopaedia, Ballarat Heritage Services, 2004.


  1. Wickham, D., Gervasoni, C. & Phillipson, W., Eureka Research Directory, Ballarat Heritage Services, 1999.
  2. http://www.kewcemetery.com.au/FindGrave.aspx, accessed 24 March 2013 by Kathleen Gervasoni
  3. Wickham, D., Gervasoni, C. & Phillipson, W., Eureka Research Directory, Ballarat Heritage Services, 1999.
  4. The Argus, 20 May 1867.

External links