William Darling Dodds was born on 15 March 1827 in Alnwick, Northumberland, England.
He was the eldest son of John and Mary Frances (née Hindmarsh) Dodds and the grand nephew of General Darling. He left London on the Duke of Richmond on 24 September 1847 arriving in Sydney on 17 January the following year.
He married Agnes née Hughes of 5 July 1851 at St Andrew's church, Sydney. She died about two months later. He moved to Victoria later that year to join his father.
He married Frances Furness (née Thomas) on 15 November 1856 in Geelong. They had the following children:
Mary — born 1860 in Connewarre
Henry Darling — born 6 November 1863 in Sydney
Lillias — born 1865 in Sydney, died 4 August 1946 in Perth
Alfred Ernest — born 31 March 1868 in Balmain, Sydney, died 1946 in Burwood NSW
He purchased Crown land in Connewarre parish on 23 July 1855. He became a South Barwon councillor serving from 1857 to 1858.
He moved to Sydney about 1862 and was living at 166 Palmer Street, Wooloomooloo, Sydney by 1863.
He died on 28 June 1875, aged 47 years, at his residence, Bald Rock in Crescent Street in Balmain, after a protracted illness of four years. He left a wife and four children. He was buried at Balmain Cemetery with his wife Frances who died on 20 December 1878.
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