The adventures of Annie Haggert
Here I pick up a story that concerns the younger John Lobban of Naracoorte.
The following is the text of a notice reprinted in the Port Augusta Dispatch of South Australia, 14 Feb 1879. The complaint, by a Dr. J.B. Kelly-White, originally published in the Yorke’s Peninsula Advertiser, is a strange one, in which he tries to redeem himself — unsuccessfully in the view of the Port Augusta Editor!
We publish the following as an example of how base a man can become:—
(To the Editor of the Y. P. Advertiser.)
SIR,—If you would kindly insert the following for me, I shall esteem it as a great favor. It is in order to remove the stain of scandal which I am not in the least entitled to:—
By last week’s steamer a woman came to this town, and molested me by emphatically making a statement that she was my wife, when I at the same time have only recently married one. In the first place let me say this woman left her husband, named John Lobban, junr., carpenter, Narracoorte, after being his wife three years. She states that she had no cause to do so, he was such a good man. This was in 1874. She came to her sister’s house, Kensington, where I lived and consulted me respecting an inward complaint. I cured her when other medical men failed to do so. On the grounds of this she prolonged her stay, and finally said she would not return to her husband, but go to town and earn her own living. Knowing she had some liking for me and being penniless, I gave her money to go and followed her to Adelaide. On arriving there she said she would be my housekeeper. Well I went with her to the Rev. Henderson’s and he married us, but it was all the time an illegal marriage. Now take notice of what follows. In 1871 Annie Haggett married one John Lobban jnr., Narracoorte, her age was 20—spinster. In 1875 she was married to me in this way: Annie Lobban spinster, aged 21 years, father’s name John Lobban. So you will notice the discrepancies not only in age, date, but also in her having two fathers. Three months after this in Laura we received notice to appear at the Supreme Court, Adelaide, John Lobban, her husband, praying for a Divorce, he obtained a decree nisi, but doubtless had he known she had gone through a form of marriage he could have put her in gaol instead of this woman coming here in Moonta, and stating that she could place me there. She was never anything to me, only a house-keeper. It comes very hard to me, and is a dreadful scandal. My professional and moral character have never before been reflected on, as my name has always been good. I would punish her, and I will if she still continues her foul language. As I was leaving Mount Remarkable for Orrooroo, she left me with her own free will and got some of her old friends in the south-east to send her money. I never gave her any, and I have not seen her since, over a space of eight months, and only had one letter from her, and that was to ask for money, which, as she was nothing to me, I treated with contempt. The moment she hears that I propose to get married she collects money from the same people, travels as fast as possible to this township, blackguards me and places a false advertisment in the paper. When she first saw me she was going to do wonders, finding that I was perfectly cool, and not guilty, after using abusive language to my wife she becomes quieter, thinking its the best policy, and states— “Well if you will turn that woman out of doors I will not trouble you, but will take a situation in Moonta, and though I cannot live with you I could meet you occasionally.” Now I ask anyone if this is the way an injured wife would act? I say no, because were she my wife and once cast eyes on me she would show her rights. It’s a source of bodily worry for me, and I feel it more for the residents of Moonta, as having felt the warm reception I received. No matter, I can face anybody, and shall stick to my ground, and ere long will remove the stigma which I have to bear.
DR. J. B. KELLY-WHITE
Page created by Chris S. Lobban on the basis of a match sent to me by MyHeritage; posted 1 Nov. 2019, last revised 30 Jan. 2020.