Thomas Wills, fourth son of Major Henry Colden and Elizabeth (née Wills) Antill was born on 24 November 1829 at "Jarvisfield" near Picton in New South Wales.
He played cricket for Victoria in the Tasmania v Victoria match at Launceston on 11-12 February in 1851. His cousin Thomas Wills was an outstanding cricketer.
He was manager of the Union Bank of Australia Ltd. He became a South Barwon councillor serving from 1861 until 1862. The family moved to New Zealand early in 1862 where he continued his work for the Union Bank. A bank was built at Nelson and branches were opened at Havelock and Picton in 1864. He became a trustee of the Nelson Savings Bank in New Zealand in 1863. During his time in New Zealand he was active in church affairs. He was a churchwarden at Christ Church in Nelson. He was a director of the Permanent Building Society at Nelson. He was the chairman of the committee which organised a full day of celebrations followed by a ball to commemorate the marriage of the Prince of Wales to Princess Alexandra of Denmark on Tuesday 16 June 1863.
He married Sarah Maria, daughter of Samuel McKee on 7 May 1852 at St James' Church in Sydney. On 20 February 1853 they had a daughter, Maria Elizabeth, who married Murray Bennett McPherson in 1876. She died in Geelong in 1937.
Sarah died on 3 March in 1853 at Geelong and was buried the following day in the Church of England section of the Geelong Eastern Cemetery.
The following year Thomas married Isabella Fisher on 15 June. They had the following children:
Henry Wills — born on 23 May 1855 at Willoughby in NSW, married Jane Gertrude McRae on 2 May 1885 , died on 4 January 1914 in New Zealand
Fanny Jessie — born in 1857 in New South Wales, died in 1910
Charlotte Maud — born in 1860 at Barrabool, died in May 1865 in Nelson in New Zealand
Mary Emily — born on 10 June 1863 in New Zealand, married Herbert Arthur Melhuish in 1891 in Queensland, died in 1947 aged 83 at St Kilda in Victoria
Thomas died on 11 May in 1865 aged 34 of scarlet fever at Nelson in New Zealand and was buried in the Church of England section of the Wakapuaka Cemetery. Isabella died on 28 October in 1875 aged 39.
Blog Created by:
Together They Served
Torquay Museum Without Walls
Geelong and District Database
Geelong Cemetery Index
Australian War Memorial
Surf Coast Early Schools
Barwon Heads History