Bridget Keays

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Bridget Keays
Born c.1839
Died 10 April 1884
Occupation Publican
Years active 1873-1884
Known for Newcastle Hotel
Home town Ballarat
Spouse(s) Edward Keays
  • Honora
    Thomas (mother)

Bridget Keays was a publican in Ballarat, <1873-1884. (Sometimes spelled as "Keys").

History[edit | edit source]

Bridget was born c.1839.[1]

Keays took over the Newcastle Hotel after her husband left, sometime about 1872.

In June 1872, Keays to legal action to try and claim money owed for accommodation:

Bridget Keays v Catherine Boyle- £2 29s 6d, board and lodging. Mr O’Dee for the plaintiff, Mr Finlayson for the defendant. The plaintiff deposed that the defendant had boarded at her place eighty-two weeks, at 10s per week. She had received £15 0s 6d on account from the defendant, but this had nothing to do with the charge for the eighty-two weeks’ board. Ann Keays, a daughter of the plaintiff's deposed that the defendant had boarded with her mother for eighty-two weeks, but as the defendant had been absent from home for thirteen weeks out of that period she was not charged; the defendant had paid £15 0s 6d on account, and this left a balance, after deducting £6 10s for the thirteen weeks, of £22 19s 6d. The system of bookkeeping was rather mixed, and from the cross examination of Miss Keays it transpired that a larger sum of money had been paid by the defendant. The defence was, that Miss Boyle had known the plaintiff in Ireland. When she came to Australia the plaintiff offered her accommodation, in her house in Ballarat, but never said anything about payment. The defendant had acted as servant at the plaintiff’s place, and had not received any remuneration for her services. The plaintiff had borrowed money from her, and the sums placed to her credit were loans, and not payments for board and lodging. They fell out in their relations, and the plaintiff then sued her. Verdict for the defendant, without costs.[2]

In November 1873 the license of the Newcastle Hotel was transferred to Bridget[3], on the grounds that her husband had deserted her.[4]

In December 1874 the police objected to the renewal of the hotel's license:

Edward Keys (Keays), Newcastle hotel, South street—Being absent from the house; Mr Doward for applicant; it appeared that Mrs Keys, who was in occupation, had been separated from her husband for two years; the house was also dilapidated and the premises in bad repair; adjourned until 29th instant to make improvements.[5]

Her license renewal application in December 1877 was again objected to on the grounds that the building was dilapidated and had bad furniture. The application was adjourned for two weeks.[6]

Keays died in Ballarat on 10 April 1884:

THE Friends of the late Mrs BRIDGET KEAYS are respectfully Invited to follow her remains to the place of interment, the Ballarat Old Cemetery. The funeral cortege to move from her late residence, Newcastle Hotel, corner of Ascot and South streets, on Saturday, the 12th inst., at 2 o'clock p.m. T. WELLINGTON, Undertaker, Dawson and Armstrong streets.[7]

She left her estate to her three children.[8]

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Australian Death Index, Victoria, 1839, Ref. No. 3406
  2. 1874 'COUNTY COURT.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 11 June, p. 4. , viewed 21 Oct 2018,
  3. 1873 'POLICE.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 26 November, p. 4. , viewed 30 Oct 2018,
  4. 1873 'CITY POLICE COURT.', The Ballarat Courier (Vic. : 1869 - 1882; 1914 - 1918), 26 November, p. 4. , viewed 31 Oct 2018,
  5. 1874 'CITY LICENSING BENCH.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 16 December, p. 4. , viewed 21 Oct 2018,
  6. 1877 'ANNUAL LICENSING MEETING.', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 19 December, p. 4. , viewed 06 Jun 2021,
  7. 1884 'Family Notices', The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), 11 April, p. 3. , viewed 21 Oct 2018,
  8. KEAYS, Bridget, Will, Public Record Office Victoria; North Melbourne, Victoria; Victorian Wills, Probate and Administration Records 1841-1925; Series: VPRS 7591

External links[edit | edit source]