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The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/Goodenough, Commodore James Graham

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Goodenough, Commodore James Graham, C.B., C.M.G., son of Very Rev. Edmund Goodenough, Dean of Wells, was born on Dec. 3rd, 1830, and entered the navy in May 1844. He went to China in the Raleigh in 1857, and having become post-captain was appointed to the Pearl in 1873, as Commodore of the Australian Station. In August of that year he was commissioned by the Earl of Kimberley to proceed to Fiji, and in conjunction with Mr. Layard, the British consul, to inquire into the expediency of annexing that island to the Imperial Crown. In March 1874 they sent in their report, which contained an offer of cession from the principal chiefs; but the terms not proving acceptable, they were subsequently modified through the exertions of Sir Hercules Robinson, who negotiated the conditions of annexation subsequently adopted. On August 12th following, during a cruise amongst the Polynesian Islands, Commodore Goodenough was shot by arrows at Santa Cruz, and tetanus supervening, he died on the 20th of the same month on board the Pearl, about five hundred miles from Sydney. This distinguished officer, whose professional capacities and philanthropic character rendered him an ornament to the navy, married Victoria, daughter of William Hamilton. The "Goodenough Royal Naval Home" in Sydney was founded to commemorate his virtues and premature death. He worked for the Daily News French Peasant Relief Fund in 1870, and was created C.M.G. in May 1875 and C.B. in May 1879.