Nikolaus HILDEBRAND 1834-1898

‘Nick’ Hildebrand arrived in Victoria in December 1858 on the “Maidstone”, out of Liverpool. No age or occupation or other detail shows on the ship’s passenger list.

Nikolaus was a most unusual name in Nieder-Weisel and only two Hildebrands ever carried it. In 1814 a son of Johannes Hildebrand and Katharina Elisabetha nee Adami received this baptismal name from his godfather, Nikolaus Rumpf. Twenty years later he, in turn, stood as sponsor for the fourth son of the linen-weaver Jakob Hildebrand and his wife Anna Maria nee Hildebrand, born on 19th March 1834; Anna Maria was an older sister of Nikolaus.

The elder Nikolaus took his family to England but he died of cholera there in 1849. His widow, Anna Elisabetha nee Wilhelm, migrated to Victoria with their five children early in 1856.

Jakob Hildebrand died at the age of 32 in January 1838, eight months before the birth of his second daughter, leaving Anna Maria the daunting task of raising their five children without support. The next older brother to Nikolaus, Philipp, migrated to England; it is likely that Nikolaus joined him there. Philipp was married in London in November 1858 – this may have influenced the decision that Nikolaus made to go on to Victoria.

Nikolaus did not marry in Victoria and this makes it difficult to trace his movements. He was known to be a shareholder in the You Know Mining Co at Rocky Lead; he was working with Johannes Adami in the mineshaft when Johannes was fatally injured in a fall in November 1864.

After giving up mining Nikolaus supported himself by working as a gardener in Ballarat. He died in his residence in Lydiard Street in July 1898, and was buried in the Old Cemetery in Ballarat.

View Nikolaus's Family Chart

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