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Hotham, Charles (1800-1855) (DNB00)


HOTHAM, Sir CHARLES (1800–1855), naval commander and colonial governor, born at Dennington, Suffolk, in 1800, was eldest son of Frederick Hotham, prebendary of Rochester, by Anne Elizabeth, eldest daughter of Thomas Hallett Hodges. He entered the navy on 6 Nov. 1818, and became lieutenant in September 1825, commander 13 Aug. 1828, and captain on 28 June 1833. In 1845 he took part in the Para expedition against Rosas, and for this and other services in South America was made a K.C.B. in 1846. In view of the troubles consequent on the gold discoveries, he was selected as lieutenant-governor for the young colony of Victoria, 2 June 1854, being made full governor on 22 May 1855. The condition of the colony was serious. Disorder reigned at the diggings, and disorganisation in the administration. He firmly repressed the former, which culminated in the outbreak at the Eureka stockade on 3 Dec. 1854, and reorganised the colonial finances and the method of dealing with the crown lands. The anxieties and labours of his office proved too much for his health, and he died at Melbourne on 31 Dec. 1855. Hotham married on 10 Dec. 1853, Jane Sarah, widow of Hugh Holbech, esq., and daughter of Samuel Hood, second Lord Bridport.

[Melbourne Argus; G. W. Rusden's Hist. of Australia.]

E. C. K. G.