LAST MODIFIED Sunday 28 April 2019 15:39

Packer family

Dr GRAEME SKINNER (University of Sydney)


To cite this:

Graeme Skinner (University of Sydney), "Packer family", Australharmony (an online resource toward the history of music and musicians in colonial and early Federation Australia):; accessed 28 May 2019

Biographical summaries

PACKER, Charles (senior)

Music seller, piano manufacturer

Born Reading, Berkshire, England, 1786; baptised St. Mary's, Reading, 29 January 1786
Married Amelia SANDYS (1788-1877), St. Dunstan in the West, London, 19 November 1808
Died Coleshill, near Amersham, Buckinghamshire, England, 26 July 1854

Towns and Packer pianos (in Australia 1850-1870) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

PACKER, Charles Sandys

(Charles Sandys PACKER; C. S. PACKER; C. S. S. PACKER; Charles Sandys [Stuart Shipley] PACKER)

Pianist, vocalist, conductor, composer

Born Reading, Berkshire, England, 1809; baptised St. Mary's Reading, 19 November 1809; son of Charles PACKER (1786-1854) and Amelia SANDYS (1788-1877)
Entered Royal Academy of Music, inaugural student intake, 1823
Married (1) Eleanor Mary Teresa GROGAN (b. Baillieborough Castle, County Cavan, Ireland, 1814), St. George the Martyr, Queen's Square, London, 19 May 1836
Convicted of forgery, Central Criminal Court, London, 4 February 1839, sentence to transportation for life

Arrived Norfolk Island, NSW, 27 April 1840 (convict per Mangles [8], from England, 21 November 1839)

Arrived Van Diemen's Land (TAS), ? Apr/May 1844 (convict per Lady Franklin [2], from Norfolk Island)
Married (2) Mary Frances MOORE, St. George's, Battery Point, Hobart, 21 August 1852

Arrived Sydney, NSW, 11 November 1853 (free, from Hobart)
Convicted of bigamy, Sydney, NSW, 21 December 1864, sentenced to 5 years hard labor
Married (3) Lucy LATHAM, at Granite-terrace, Fitzroy, VIC, 4 January 1873
Died Darling Point, Sydney, NSW, 13 July 1883 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)

Summary (STUB):

Van Diemen's Land (1844-53)

On arrival in Van Diemen's land in April 1844, Packer was first sent to Soutport to work in a labour gang for a year. Returned to Hobart Town, in May 1845 he was assigned for a ywar to the musician William Wilkins Russell, who first presented Packer to the public in a serries of concerts in Hobart and Launceston in the second half of 1845 and 1846. In May 1846, he was next assigned to Hobart solicitor, Thomas Wood Rowlands, on whose unexpected death in June 1847, Packer then passed very briefly into the service of judge Algernon Montagu (1802-1880), apparently at the latter's request. However, only a month later, on 27 July 1847, Packer was granted a ticket-of-leave. Montagu was was neverthess criticised for his dealings with Packer, and the matter was raised in the press as late as December 1848, a full year after Montagu's dismissal.

According to Jane Reichenberg (1923), Packer was organist of St. Joseph's Church, Hobart, in succession to her father Joseph Reichenberg, presumably in the brief period between Reichenberg's death and Packer's departure for Sydney in the second half of 1853.

Sydney (1853-883)

Packer's two major Australian works were the oratorios David, three numbers of which were performed in concert in December 1869 (the score, now lost, was once in the possession of August Huenerbein junior), and Crown of thorns, which was performed complete several times in Sydney and Melbourne before being published posthumously by the Huenerbeins for the Packer Memorial Fund. According to William Stanley's obituary (1902), "on the death of the late Charles Packer that composer's sacred cantata, "The Crown of Thorns", was completed by the late Mr. William Stanley", probably indicating that he at least edited the manuscript for publication.


"THE LATE C. S. PACKER", The Sydney Morning Herald (16 July 1883), 3 

Charles Sandys Packer, one of the most accomplished musicians Australia has known, died on Friday last, and was buried yesterday afternoon at Waverley Cemetery, his grave being situated on a slope overlooking the Pacific. He had reached the advanced age of 73 years, being born in Reading, Berkshire, England, in 1810. While very young Charles Packer evinced such a love and talent for music that his father, himself a musician, placed him at the Royal Academy of Music, where he achieved the highest honours that institution was capable of bestowing, carrying out the best prizes awarded for composition, pianoforte playing, and singing. His masters were: - For composition, Dr. Crotch, Regius Professor at Oxford, Mozart's pupil Attwood, Bochsa, the great orchestral master, and Weber, the celebrated composer, and for singing, Crivelli and Veluti. He was selected, when but a youth, to compose an opera for the opening of the new Royal Lyceum Opera House, a building erected in place of one which was destroyed by fire, and his literary coadjutor was Mary Russell Mitford, the authoress of "Our Village." The production was a successful one, and enjoyed a long run, and Mr. Packer's composition was favourably noticed by the most eminent critics of England, France, and Germany. The young composer was favoured by the notice and friendship of such men as Mendelssohn, Thalberg, Hummel, and Weber, and he was the chosen accompanist of such great singers as Mario, Giulia Grisi, and Lablache. He frequently had the distinction of playing duets with her Majesty Queen Adelaide - consort of William IV. - both of them being pupils of Hummel. His first composition was an aria "Basta, basta," the words being from Metastasio's "Morte d' Abelle;" and when, in 1828, this was performed at a concert given in the Hanover-square Rooms, the Harmonicon, the best journal of the day as regards musical criticism, spoke of it in terms of the highest praise, and predicted a bright future for the composer. Throughout his long life - he was 73 when he died - Mr. Packer was a prolific composer, although the number of his published works is comparatively small. His "Crown of Thorns" and "Song of the Angels," and some lighter efforts, are widely known and as widely admired; but Mr. August Huenerbein has the scores of "David," a grand oratorio, and of many other compositions, which will yet be published, and which will long preserve Charles Packer's name from oblivion. His life was a chequered one, and from Tasmania, where unhappy circumstances had brought him some years before, he in 1852 came to Sydney, where he remained ever since. For the last three years of his life he suffered from bad health and bad fortune, and a week ago he was seized with fatal illness, the cause of death being inflammation of the lungs and bronchitis. He has left a large family, poorly provided for.

The funeral cortege set out at half-past 2 o'clock yesterday afternoon, from the deceased's late residence, Point Piper-road, Woollahra, to the Waverley Cemetery. Mr. August Huenerbein and Mr. C. B. Foster, thinking that one who during life had displayed such rare musical talent, should be accorded musical honours at his funeral, and that the members of the musical profession should be given an opportunity of evincing the last tribute of esteem to an old friend, had made such arrangements that for some years there has not been such an imposing procession as that which accompanied Charles Packer's body to the grave. First marched 25 members of the City Band, conducted by Mr. Sebastian Hodge, then followed 12 members of Thompson's Premier Band, several members of Herr Kuster's Band, and of the Headquarters Band, many of our best vocalists, and members of the different city choirs. Then came the hearse, drawn by four horses, two mourning coaches, and a large number of other vehicles. The footpaths on the line of route were thronged with people, and as the procession moved along, the bands constantly relieving one another in playing the "Dead March in Saul," the train swelled and lengthened, until at the cemetery there must have been 6000 people present. Here the mourners were met by the Rev. W. J. M. Hillyar, B. A., Paddington, and conducted to the grave, the pall-bearers being Messrs C. B. Foster, August Huenerbein, Charles Huenerbein, William Morgan, John B. Bushelle, G. F. Jackson, Llewellyn Jones, F. J. Hallewell, Ramsay, R. T. Gibson, and E. Stephen, and Signor Fabris. There were also present Signor Giorza, Mr. T. P. Banks, Mr. T. Rainford, Mr. F. Pines, Mr. T. A. Gread, and Mr. J. C. Fisher. The coffin was covered with wreaths and garlands of exquisite beauty, and as soon as it was lowered the choir sang "The Song of the Angels," composed by Mr. Packer last Christmas time, and scored by Herr Raymond Pechotsch for the bands only a few hours before the funeral ceremony took place. Then followed the majestic hymn from the church service, "Nearer, my God, to Thee," sung to a tune also composed by Mr. Packer [recte by his brother]. Signor Giorza conducted the vocalists and instrumentalists, and, the throng of people around taking up the strain, rarely has such a grand swell of harmony resounded in an Australian cemetery as that which yesterday rose over the grave of Charles Packer. The Rev. Mr. Hillyar - himself a personal friend of the deceased - read the burial service very impressively, and those who were present will not soon forget the imposing scene, the funeral being in a sense a public one - that of a man whose work was for the public. It was so largely attended that after the ceremony was over the trams from Waverley to Sydney were overloaded, and many hundreds of people had to walk back to the city.

"SOCIAL", The Sydney Morning Herald (28 July 1883), 11

Charles Sandys Packer, one of the most accomplished musicians Australia has known, died on July 13. He had reached the advanced age of 73 years, being born in Reading, Berkshire, England, in 1810. While very young, Charles Packer evinced such a love and talent for music that his father, himself a musician, placed him at the Royal Academy of Music, where he achieved the highest honours that institution was capable of bestowing, carrying off the best prizes awarded for composition, pianoforte playing, and singing. His masters were: for composition, Dr. Crotch, Regius Professor at Oxford, Mozart's pupil Attwood, Bochsa, the great orchestral master, and Weber, the celebrated composer, and for singing, Crivelli and Veluti. He was selected, when but a youth, to compose an opera for the opening of the new Royal Lyceum Opera House, a building erected in place of one which was destroyed by fire; and his literary coadjutor was Mary Russell Mitford, the authoress of "Our Village". The production was a successful one, and enjoyed a long run; and Mr. Packer's composition was favourably noticed bv the most eminent critics of England, France, and Germany. The young composer was favoured by the notice and friendship of such men as Thalberg, Hummel, and Weber; and he was the chosen accompanist of such great singers as Mario, Giulia Grisi, and Lablache. He frequently had the distinction of playing duets with her Majesty Queen Adelaide, consort of William IV, both of them being pupils of Hummel. His first composition was an aria, "Basta, Basta!" the words being from Metastasio's "Morte d'Abelle , and when, in 1825, this was performed at a concert given in the Hanover Square Rooms, the Harmonicon, the best journal of the day as regards musical criticism, spoke of it in terms of the highest praise, and predicted a bright future for the composer. His "Crown of Thorns" and "Song of the Angels", and some lighter efforts, are widely known and as widely admired. Mr. August Huenerbein has the scores of "David", an oratorio and of many other compositions, which will yet be published, and which will long preserve Charles Packer's name from oblivion. His life was a chequered one.

The burial took place at the Waverley Cemetery, and was attended by a large number of musical people and others as mourners, and an immense crowd assembled at the cemetery to witness the ceremonies. The funeral procession was headed by two bands, who play alternately the Dead March in "Saul", and at the grave site the choir sang, "The Song of the Angels," composed by Mr. Packer last Christmas time, then followed the majestic hymn from the Church service "Nearer, my God, to Thee," sung to a tune also composed by Mr. Packer [recte by his brother].

Charles Packer's funeral, 1883

"THE FUNERAL OF THE LATE C. S. PACKER, AT WAVERLEY CEMETERY", Illustrated Sydney News (4 August 1883), 20 

"THE OLDEST PIANIST IN AUSTRALIA", The Sydney Morning Herald (18 September 1902), 8

It is with regret that we learn of the death of Mr. William Stanley . . . on the death of the late Charles Packer that composer's sacred cantata, "The Crown of Thorns", was completed by the late Mr. William Stanley . . .

Bibliography and resources:

E. J. Lea-Scarlett, "Packer, Charles Sandys Stuart Shipley", Australian dictionary of biography 5 (1974)

PACKER, Frederick Alexander (senior)

Professor of music, music master, music seller, harpist, pianist, organist, composer

Born Reading, England, 7 May 1814
Arrived Hobart, TAS, 10 July 1852 (per Sylph with wife and 8 children)
Died Hobart, TAS, 2 July 1862, aged 48 years (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)


In October 1855, having earlier that year had to correct rumours that he was leaving the colony, Packer released the first of his compositions to be published in Australia, The queen of the polkas (lost). The Colonial Times judged it: "A little disfigured by repetition, or sameness, it is, nevertheless, without doubt, the best piece of the kind we have yet seen produced in this island."

At St. David's Cathedral on Christmas Day 1859, a Psalm chant by him was sung at morning prayer, and in the evening a canticle setting Deus misereatur by his son. Until now, the hymn setting Nearer to thee, possibly his last surviving Australian composition, has also usually been incorrectly assumed to be the work of Frederick junior (and also attributed to his brother Charles). But both it and a Mazurka for piano belong, certainly, to Frederick senior. They were first published in May 1861, not in Hobart, but in Melbourne, where the Argus greeted them as "decidedly as original and talented as any colonial musical productions we have heard", and congratulated itself "on having in Australia so talented a composer as Mr. Packer". Nearer to thee was reportedly sung, under Packer senior's direction, at an ordination service at St. David's, Hobart, in July 1861. It went into a second edition by the end of the year, and in January 1862 it was sung at a concert by the Opheonist Society in Sydney (possibly programmed by his brother Charles Packer). Though a copy of the original 1861 edition has not been identified, an 1866 reprint Nearer to thee (Hymn CIX) is extant. Meanwhile, no copy of the 1861 print of the Mazurka has been identified either; however, it may have been identical with Packer's earlier Mazurka, published in London. Another pre-Australian publication by him was The Eglantine polka (London, [1851]); copy at British Library, Music Collections h.967.(32.) [004565780].


"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Courier (14 July 1852), 2

[Advertisement]: "MR. FREDERICK A. PACKER", Colonial Times (20 July 1852), 1

"OFFICIAL SALARIES. To the Editor", The Courier (3 June 1853), 2

"A NEW POLKA", Colonial Times (12 October 1855), 3

"ROYAL SOCIETY OF VAN DIEMEN'S LAND", The Courier (16 November 1855), 2

"THE ORGAN AT ST. DAVID'S CATHEDRAL", The Hobart Town Daily Mercury (28 December 1859), 2

[News]: "We have received . . .", The Argus (21 May 1861), 5

"ORDINATION", The Mercury (26 July 1861), 2

"AMUSEMENTS, FINE ARTS, &c.", The Mercury (22 August 1861), 3

[Advertisement], The Mercury (19 December 1861), 1

"SECOND CONCERT OF THE ORPHEONIST SOCIETY", The Sydney Morning Herald (7 January 1862), 4

"DEATH OF MR. F. A. PACKER", The Mercury (3 July 1862), 2

The public will learn with deep regret the death of this gentleman, which melancholy event took place after a few days severe illness, yesterday evening. Mr. Packer had suffered for some time past from an affection of the chest and other complaints associated with it, but it was not until a day or two back that serious apprehensions were entertained by his family. On Tuesday his eldest son [Frederick Augustus] arrived in town from Launceston, and with the exception of a married daughter, the whole of his children were present, we believe at the time of his decease, just prior to which the sacrament was administered to him by the Venerable Archdeacon Davis. Mr. Packer was an old resident in Hobart Town, and a gentleman greatly respected for his many estimable qualities. He has been for many years Organist of St. David's Cathedral, and had attained some eminence beyond the limits of the colony as a musical composer. Mr. Packer has left a widow and family of twelve children, the majority of whom are of too tender an age to provide for themselves under the melancholy circumstances of bereavement in which they are placed.

"DEATHS", The Mercury (4 July 1862), 1

"THE ORATORIO OF THE MESSIAH", The Mercury (2 September 1862), 3

Handel's Oratorio of the Messiah was rendered last evening at the Theatre Royal, the occasion being for the benefit of the family of the late Mr. F. A. Packer. A very large number of lady and gentlemen amateurs volunteered their assistance for the furtherance of this object; the leader being Mr. Russell, and the conductor Mr. Tapfield. . . . The occasion is not inopportune for recording some brief notes of the career of a very gifted and accomplished man, who has been removed from our midst in the prime of life. Frederick Packer was in every sense a thorough musician, possessing to an extent rarely equalled, a profound knowledge of harmony, and a refined elegance of melody. His style as a composer was distinguished for its scientific counterpoint and striking and modulations and transitions. Possessing "a mind of Music's own", and a sweet though not very powerful tenor voice, he became a student of the Royal Academy of Music which has produced some of the first masters of Europe, and thus received a thorough musical education under some of the most celebrated professors of the day. Amongst his masters may be named Dr. Crotch, and Mr. Goss, for Harmony and Composition; Potter, for the Pianoforte; Crivelli, for Singing; and Bochsa and Alvars, for the Harp. The latter was Mr. Packer's solo instrument; and it will be long before those who have heard his performances on it will forget his mastery of the most difficult passages, and the inexpressible sweetness and elegance which characterised his manipulation of this instrument. The highest of all compliments was always awarded him, viz., the breathless silence of his audience until the close. Whilst playing Irish or Scottish airs, especially, the falling of a leaf might have been heard. As a Composer Mr. Packer ranked highly. We believe he has left numerous MSS. in the hands of his family, which were composed during the last few years. He has given few works however to the public since he left England. There he was constantly engaged on new publications, and several [of] the leading London publishers were purchasers of his copywrights [sic]. The beautiful hymn "Nearer to Thee", composed about two years ago, was his latest contribution to our sacred music, and bears signs of being the production of a master mind. For a considerable period of his life, upwards-we believe of fifteen years, Mr. Packer was a resident of Reading in Berkshire, where he was Organist of St. Mary's Church. He was induced with a view of providing for his increasing family to seek a more extended field in Australia, leaving a large practice and bringing with him substantial marks of the kindly estimation in which he was held at home. Whilst at Reading he was a constant guest at the evening entertainments at Strathfieldsaye, being a great favorite of the late Duke of Wellington; and on one occasion at Windsor Castle, was surprised by the Queen whilst playing one of his own songs, "Maureen", who paid him the compliment of requesting a copy of it. Amongst Mr. Packer's pupils in England were the present Duchess of Wellington, to whom he taught the Harp; the Duchess of Buckingham, the Ladies Lyttleton, the present Duke ot Newcastle, and members of the family of the Earl of Yarborough, Sir Robert Peel, the Earl of Chichester, and others. In Tasmania Mr. Packer had suffered much from repeated attacks of asthma, which greatly impeded him in the practice of his profession, and occasionally involved him in embarrassments that troubled him greatly. But he has left behind him a memory endeared to his family, and the reputation of an honorable as well as accomplished man, and an unassuming but true christain [sic]. The large audience which filled the Theatre last night must be in the highest degree gratifying to the feelings of his friends, as a testimony of public esteem.

[News], Reading Mercury [UK] (21 December 1889)

Old residents of Reading [writes a correspondent] will remember the Packer family, which has been associated with Reading and the county of Berkshire since the middle of the last century. Mr. Charles Packer, sen., was a well-known professor of music in Reading in the early part of the present century, and was for many years organist of the Minster [St.Mary's]. On leaving Reading for London he was succeeded by his second son, Fredk. Alex.Packer, who also was organist of St. Mary's, and who subsequently emigrated to Tasmania with his family, where he died in 1862. It will be very gratifying to those who remember him [and many will for his most genial character] to hear that his sons have made positions for themselves in Australia that reflect honour upon them and upon this their native town. 

Bibliography and resources:

"Packer, Frederick Alexander (1814-1862)", Obituaries Australia

GOW, Nathaniel

Musician, composer, and arranger

Born Dunkeld, Perthshire, Scotland, 28 May 1763
Married (2) Mary HOGG, 1814
Died Edinburgh, Scotland, 19 January 1831

PACKER, Augusta

(Miss Augusta GOW; Mrs. F. A. PACKER senior)

Musician, vocalist, music teacher

Born Edinburgh, Scotland, 13 July 1815 (daughter of Nathaniel GOW and Jane HOGG)
Married Frederick Alexander Packer, Edinburgh, 22 July 1837
Arrived Hobart, TAS, 10 July 1852 (per Sylph from London, 2 March)
Died Hobart, TAS, 23 February 1893, aged 77 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)


Daughter of the Edinburgh musician and composer Nathaniel Gow, and his second wife Mary Hogg (1777- ), was reportedly herself a pupil at the Royal Academy of Music in London (presumably c.1830), in July 1837 she married another former RAM student, Frederick Alexander Packer. Her appointment, in late 1840, as wet nurse to the infant princess royal, Victoria (her mother, queen Victoria, anyway famously averse to breast feeding) occasioned her first premature notice by the Australian press in W. A. Duncan's Chronicle in Sydney in April 1841:

"Mrs. Packer, who has been appointed wet nurse to the princess royal, is a native of Edinburgh, where she was well known as Miss Augusta Gow. She is a daughter of the late Nathaniel Gow, of this city, and grand-daughter of the celebrated Neil Gow. Mrs. Packer studied music at the Royal Academy, London, with the view of becoming a public singer, in which character she appeared here at several concerts. Mrs. Packer has, or at least had, a splendid figure, and no doubt possesses all the qualifications requisite for the proper performance of the duties of her important office. - Scotsman.

She herself arrived in Hobart in July 1852, with her husband and family, including musician son Frederick Augustus Packer. For several years after her husband's death in 1862, she advertised as a teacher:

giving instruction in Italian and English Singing, and on the Pianoforte (either to beginners or to those who may require finishing lessons) . . . Mrs. Packer will also give lessons (separately) in Scottish Songs and the Music peculiar to Scotland.

Documentation and obituaries:

"Mrs. Packer . . .", Australasian Chronicle (3 April 1841), 4

"LATEST NEWS FROM EUROPE", South Australian Register (10 April 1841), 5

[Advertisement], The Mercury (18 December 1862), 3

[Advertisement], The Mercury (10 January 1863), 1

[Advertisement], The Mercury (29 December 1864), 1

? [Advertisement], The Mercury (19 July 1888), 1

"DEATHS", The Mercury (24 February 1893), 1

"PASSED AWAY", The Mercury (24 February 1893),  2

PASSED AWAY. Our obituary notices of to-day record the death of Mrs. Augusta Packer, a colonial of many years, who passed away yesterday, deservedly beloved and respected. The deceased lady, who died full of years, even beyond the allotted "three score and ten", was stricken by paralysis some years ago, but retained her faculties in singular brightness up to within two days of her decease. As the grand-daughter of Scotland's famous musician, Niel Gow, aid the daughter of his equally famous son, Nathaniel Gow (composer of Caller Herrin') it is not to be wondered at that her own musical abilities were of the highest order. At an early age - when Miss Gow - she studied at the Royal Academy of Music, and was regarded as one of its most accomplished students, Costa, Moscheles, and Cipriani Potter, the most celebrated men of the day, being among her instructors. The deceased lady leaves a large family, nearly all of which are married and settled in Tasmania, including Mr. F. A. Packer (Clerk of Parliament), Mr. John Packer (Under Treasurer), Mr. A. H. Packer (H. M. Customs), Mr. H. E. Packer (Ministerial Secretary), and Mr. R. K. Packer of the Queensland Telegraph Service.


"Gow, Nathaniel", Sainsbury, Dictionary, 1824, 1 (not digitied); see Dictionary, 1827, 1, 292 

"GOW, NATHANIEL", in Robert Chambers (ed.), A biographical dictionary of eminent Scotsmen, volume 3 division 4 (Glasgow: Blackie & Son, 1853), [479]-487 

GOW, Nathaniel, who, as a violinist and composer, well deserves a place in any work intended to perpetuate the names of Scotsmen who have done honour or service to their country, was the youngest son of the celebrated Neil Gow. His mother's name was Margaret Wiseman, and he was born at Inver, near Dunkeld, Perthshire, on the 28th May, 1766 . . . [487] . . . He was twice married. By his first wife, Janet Fraser, he had five daughters and one son, of whom two of the daughters only survive - Mary, married to Mr. Jenkins of London; and Jessie, to Mr. Luke, treasurer of George Heriot's Hospital. By his second wife, Mary Hog, to whom he was married in 1814, he had three sons and two daughters, only two of whom survived him - namely, John, who was educated in Heriot's Hospital; and Augusta, who became a teacher of music in Edinburgh, after having undergone five years' training in London. A spirited likeness of Mr. Gow was painted by Mr John Syme of Edinburgh, which, with the portrait of his father Neil, the Dalhousie Goblet, and small kit fiddle, are in the possession of Mrs Luke. GOW, Neil, a celebrated violin player and composer of Scottish airs, was the son of John Gow and Catharine McEwan, and was born at Inver, near Dunkeld, Perthshire, on the 22d of March, 1727 . . .

"Nathaniel Gow", Wikipedia 

PACKER, Frederick Augustus Gow (junior)

Organist, conductor, composer

Baptised Reading, England, 14 September 1839
Arrived Hobart, TAS, 10 July 1852 (per Sylph)
Died Parramatta, NSW, 1 August 1902 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (NLA persistent identifier)


"DEATH OF MR. F. A. PACKER", The Mercury (2 August 1902), 5

It will be heard with great regret that Frederick Augustus Packer, formerly Clerk of the House of Assembly, Tasmania, died on the 1st inst, at Sydney, where he had resided for some years past. Mr. Packer was the fourth generation of a race of musicians, on the mother's side. His great grandfather was Mr. Neil Gow, a Scotch musician of some celebrity in his day, and his grand-father was Mr. Nathaniel Gow, the composer of the favourite Scotch song, "Caller Herrin'" - in itself sufficient to give fame. Mr. Packer's mother was, in early life, a student at the Royal Academy of Music, where, among her masters, were the famous Moscheles, Cipriani Potter, and Sir Michael Costa. Miss Gow became the wife of Mr. Frederick Alexander Packer, R.A.M., of Reading, Berkshire, and died at the Military Barracks, Hobart, on the 23rd February, 1892, aged 77 years. Amongst her children, as well as the son who died on the 1st, were the late Mr. John Packer, Under-Treasurer; Mr. A. H. Packer, of the Customs Department, Mr. R. K. Packer, of the Queensland Telegraph Service; and Sir. H. E. Packer, now Secretary for Public Works. Mr. F. A. Packer, who has just died, was well-known as the composer of a number of admired songs, the best-known of which is "I am listening". He will be long remembered in Hobart musical circles as an organist of much capability. He had been in bad health for a long time past, and his death was hardly unexpected.

"DEATH OF MR. F. G. PACKER", The Sydney Morning Herald (4 August 1902), 5

We have to record the death at Parramatta on Friday last of Mr. Frederick Gow Packer, the well-known songwriter and composer. The deceased gentleman, who was born at Reading, Berkshire, came of musical stock. He came to Australia in his early manhood, and subsequently held for about 16 years the office of clerk of the House of Assembly, Hobart. About five years ago he retired on a pension and settled in Sydney, where, for about six months-during Mons. Wiegland's visit to Europe - he held the latter gentleman's position as organist at St. Patrick's. Shortly after paralysis set in, and now, after a weary struggle of four yours, the end is come. As a composer Mr. Packer excelled in the gift of melody. His ballad "Listening" and his "Ave Maria" are probably known throughout the English-speaking world. He also set to music Longfellow's "Wreck of the Hesperus", several fine cantatas for public functions, and a comic opera, "Sweet Simplicity", performed at the Hobart and Launceston theatres. He was organist at St. David's Church, Hobart, for many years. No musical movement in that city seemed complete without him, and he worked hard in assisting to raise the funds necessary to purchase the Hobart Town Hall and St. David's Church organs. He was twice married, leaving a grown-up family by his first wife, and two little boys by the young widow who survives him.

Bibliography and resources:

R. L. Wettenhall, "Packer, Frederick Augustus Gow (1839-1902)", Australian dictionary of biography 5 (1974)

"Packer, Frederick Augustus (1839-1902)", Obituaries Australia

PACKER, John Edward

Amateur musician, pianist, organist, composer

Born Reading, Berkshire, England, 1840
Arrived Hobart, TAS, 10 July 1852 (per Sylph)
Died North Sydney, NSW, 24 August 1900


"OBITUARY", The Mercury (27 August 1900), 3 

Very general regret was expressed yesterday when it became known that Mr. John E. Packer, formerly Under Treasurer of the colony, had passed away at his residence in Sydney . . . Though his long residence in these colonies makes him almost an Australian, he was an Englishman by birth, and a native of the ancient Benedictine abbey city of Reading, capital of Berkshire, where his father, F. Alexander Packer (a member of the Royal Academy of Music), was for many years organist of the Minster (St. Lawrence's church). It was here the subject of this notice received his earliest musical education. He came out to Tasmania with his parents in the early fifties, and when in his teens entered the office of Messrs. Huybers and Hammond, merchants, Murray-street. He was an enthusiastic musician, his father being his chief instructor, though he was indebted for much of his musical education to his mother, an accomplished pupil of Costa's at the Royal Academy of Music, and the youngest daughter of Nathaniel Gow, composer of "Caller Herrin," and grand-daughter of Scotland's national musician, the celebrated Neil Gow, of immortal fame. Mr. Packer was for many years organist of All Saints' Church, and afterwards he occupied a similar position at St. George's, Battery Point, and through his strenuous exertions the choir of that church for many years held a position second to none amongst the southern churches . . . He was the author of many musical compositions, which have been most favourably reviewed. That sweetly pretty hymn, "At even when the sun was set," came from his pen. Like his gifted uncle, the late Charles S. Packer, composer of the "Crown of thorns," and his brother, Mr. F. A. Packer, the generally recognised musician and composer of this colony, he was a skilled pianist. . . . The deceased retired on a pension some four years ago, and, finding the climate of Tasmania not suited to his failing health, he took up his residence in Sydney. At St. George's Church yesterday the "Dead March" in Saul was played at both the morning and evening service, and reference made to his services in the parish.

Bibliography and resources:

"Packer, John Edward (1840-1900)", Obituaries Australia

Documentation (Great Britain)

19 November 1809, baptism of Charles Sandys Packer

Baptisms registered in the parish of St. Mary's, Reading, Berkshire, 1809

[Baptism date] 19 November 1809, [son of] Charles Packer, Amelia Sandys

7 May 1814, birth of Frederick Alexander Packer, Reading, Berkshire, England

[No documentary record yet seen]

13 July 1815, birth of Augusta Gow

Births registered in the parish of Edinburgh, 1815

[Birth date] 13 July 1815, [daughter of] Nathaniel Gow, Mary Hogg

March 1823, Royal Academy of Music, inaugural class

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The morning post (26 March 1823), 3

We are happy to learn that the instruction of the Pupils of this Institution has commenced; eleven Boys and ten Girls have been admitted - one of the Boys was admitted on the recommendation of his Majesty . . .

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The musical world 32/15 (15 April 1854) [sic], 255 (DIGITISED)

The following are the names of the first ten boys and girls who were elected at the institution of the Academy in 1823:-

GIRLS: Mary Euphrasia Lawson, Catherine Smith, Mary Chancellor, Susannah Collier, Emily Waring Jenkins, Mary Ann Jay, Charlotte Bromley, Hannah Mary Little, Josephine Palin, Catherine Porter.

BOYS: H. A. M. Cooke, Henry Greatorex, Thomas Mollison Mudie, Henry G. Blagrove, John Kellow Pye, William Henry Phipps, Alfred Devaux, Charles Alex. Seymour, Edwin John Nielson, Charles Sandys Packer.

"In the examination of these youthful candidates," says a musical journal of the time, "no great deal of talent was manifested, except by the son of Mr. T.Cooke, who distinguished himself much, by performing upon several instruments, and as the reward of his ingenuity and industry was placed by the ballot at the head of the list. Most, if not all, of these children have entered for the purpose of being instructed on the pianoforte or harp; a great proportion desiring to be taught the latter - claiming Mr. Bochsa as their master! But for the bassoon, hautboy, horn, and other instruments, so much wanted in our orchestras, not one pupil appeared; so that a principal object intended to be accomplished by the Academy, will not, for the present certainly, be carried into effect. If we are not mistaken, there are upwards of forty professors at this institution, and twenty scholars, which is at the rate of one pupil to two masters. No great fear, then, need be apprehended from a rebellion here."

A month later the following were elected as extra students, or "scholars, who contributed towards their maintenance and instruction:" - . . .

Letter from Charles Packer (senior) to John D. Sainsbury [or his agent], "Reading. Jany 11th 1824"; University of Glasgow library, MS Euing R.d.87/146 (1 folio, r-v) 

Reading Jan'y 11th 1824
By mere accident I have just discover'd that I have mistaken the date when you requested my answer might be forwarded to you. I have therefore taken the earliest opportunity of addressing a few lines to you on the subject - there are few things which any person could be called upon to do which would be more difficult than to become his own biographer especially when his life has passed in uniform domestic happiness unmarked by any of those striking events which render the relation interesting to others [ - ] it would also have been much more agreable to me (and I here beg you will not construe this observation into an intention to offend) if I had some [verso] previous knowledge of the intention to publish such a work of what description the publication is to be, or of the parties to whom I should commit myself by transmitting the particulars required by your letter - at the same time I beg to add that I should consider a well conducted work of the kind a great desideratum & should perhaps have much pleasure in subscribing to it altho' my own life might add no additional interest to the work if agreable to your convenience to give me some further information on the subject I shall feel oblig'd and will give it immediate attention.
I am Sir
Y'r humble serv't
Chas. Packer

See Leanne Langley, "Sainsbury's Dictionary, the Royal Academy of Music, and the rhetoric of patriotism", in Christina Bashford and Leanne Langley (eds), Music and British culture, 1785-1914: essays in honor of Cyril Ehrlich (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), 65-94 (PREVIEW) 

"THE ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The quarterly musical magazine and review 6 (1824), 77-86 (DIGITISED)

On the morning of Wednesday, February 25, 1824, a public concert was performed by the pupils of this national seminary, for the first time . . . [81] . . . PIANO FORTE DUET, W. H. PHIPPS AND C. S. PACKER; Played in a clear and spirited manner by two promising boys; they produced the very best quality of tone that the instruments, which were excellent, would afford . . .

[Advertisement], The morning post (24 February 1824), 1

ROYAL ACADEMY of MUSlC - Under the of Patronage of his MAJESTY. - By permission of the Right Honourable the Directors of the Concerts of Antient Music - At the King's Antient Concert Rooms, in Hanover-square, - The Nobility and Gentry are respectfully acquainted a MORNING CONCERT of VOCAL and INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC, will take place at the above Rooms, on WEDNESDAY next, the 25th of Feb. - To commence at One o'clock precisely. The Performances will be entirely by the Pupils of the Royal Academy of Music, being their the first public Exhibition.

Scheme of the Concert, Wednesday, Feb. 25, 1824. Act I - Symphonia, Haydn - Psalmo Marcello - Duet, two Piano Fortes, W. H. Phipps and C. S. Packer, Dussek - Song, Miss Perier, Zingarelli - Fantasia, Harp, Miss Morgan (with Orchestral Accompaniments), Bochsa - Solo, Violin, H. G. Blagrove, Viotti - Ode on the King's Accession to the Throne, Dr. Crotch; the words by the Rev. J. J. Conybeare, late Professor of Poetry, Oxford.

Act. II - Trio, Piano Forte, Miss Chancellor; Harp, Miss Jay, Violoncello, C. Lucas, Bochsa - Solo, Oboe, H. A. M. Cooke, (composed expressly for this occasion) Bochsa - Song, Miss Watson, Sarti - Duet, Piano Forte, Misses Chancellor and Goodwin, (never performed in this country), Hummell - Polacco, Violoncello, C. Lucas, Duport - Air and Chorus, C. Lucas and Misses Watson, Belchambers, and Chancellor, Mayer - Introduction to the Grand National Anthem, "God save the King," Bochsa.

The Tickets of Admission are now ready for delivery to the Subscribers and Honorary Members, who will be pleased to send for them; and Tickets, at lOs. 6d. each, may be had by Non-Subscribers at the Academy, and at the principal Music Shops. - Royal Academy of Music, Tenterdon-street, Hanover-square, Feb. 21, 1824. J. WEBSTER. Secretary.

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The morning post (27 February 1824), 4

The Pupils of this munificent and highly laudable Institution produced, at the Hanover-square Rooms, the first public exhibition of their native talent for one of the most elegant of human acquisitions, and the progress they have made under the tuition of some of the first professors of the kingdom, both as composers and performers. This Scholastic Establishment, of which, we understand, the Noble Chairman, Lord BURGHERSH, enjoys the credit of being the original founder, and of which His Majesty was, on the first solicitation, graciously pleased to become the Special and Perpetual Patron, commenced its labours no longer ago than last March; and, after the display, we witnessed, of the advances made by the juvenile students, both male and female, in the acts of vocal and instrumental perfornwnce, we cannot but congratulate them on the advantages with which generally, they appear to be endowed by nature; and their further good fortune in being placed under such tutors as Dr. Crotch, Mr. Beale, Mr. F. Cramer, Mr. Bochsa, and other able Professors, aided by the educatory taste and talents of Madame Regnaudin . . .

. . . The principal evidence of the wonderful progress made by this Royal Establishment towards its stimulating and ultimate object, was given by Masters Phipps and Packer in their Piano-forte Duet, their execution of which was more neat, distinct, and expressive, than we could in reason expect; by Miss Porter . . . ; by Miss Morgan . . .; Master Cooke . . .; Miss Watson . . .; and by Master Lucas . . .

The room was filled to an overflow with company of the most genteel description. The Duke of CLARENCE was present; and in the compartment reserved for the accommodation of the Ladies Patronesses, we observed the Duchess of KENT, the Duchess of CLARENCE, the Princess AUGUSTA, and the Duchess of GLOUCESTER.

[Advertisement], The morning post (27 May 1824), 2

THE ROYAL ACADEMY of MUSIC, under the Patronage of his MAJESTY . . . A MORNING CONCERT, for the BENEFIT of the ROYAL SOCIETY of MUSICIANS, and the NEW MUSICAL FUND. - By Permission of the Directors of the Royal Academy of Music, a MORNING CONCERT wil! be given by the Pupils of thai Institution at the Argyll Rooms, on SATURDAY MORNING, the 29th inst . . .. Scheme of the Concert: -

Part I. Symphony in E Flat (Hadyn); Psalmo, Marcello; Quartetto, two Violins, Tenor and Bass. C. A. Seymour, H. G. Blagrove, W. H. Phipps and C. Lucas (Haydn); Terzetto, Misses Watson, Bellchambers, and C. Lucas; from Cosi fan tutti (Mozart); Concerto, Pianoforte, Miss Chancellor (Moschelles).

Part II. Otetto, Pianoforte, Harp, Violin, Tenor, Iwo Violoncellos, Oboe, and Bassoon, Misses Goodwin, Shee, C. A. Seymour, W. H. Phipp, C. Lucas, T. W. Cooke, H. A. M. Cooke, and D. Smith (composed expressly for this occasion), Bochsa; Canon, Misses Porter, Chancellor, and C. Lucas, Lindley, Nicolini; Concertanto, two Pianofortes, W. H. Phipps and C. S. Packer (with orchestral accompaniments), Bochsa; Song, Miss Porter, Mayer; Duet, Violin and Violoncello, H. G. Blagrove, and C. Lucas, Lindley; Finale - lntroduction to the Grand National Anthem, "God save the King," Bochsa.

The Performances will commence at Two o'Clock precisely. Tickets Half-a-Guinea each . . .

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The London courier and evening gazette (31 May 1824), 3

A Morning Concert was given on Saturday at the Argyll Rooms by the pupils of this establishment. On a previous occasion we noticed the proficiency which some of the pupils have already attained in the performance of instrumental music, and in this instance they gave fresh proofs of their ability. The Concert opened with a symphony by Haydn in E flat. As a whole it was played with tolerable precision, and in particular parts there was a fine accordance of sounds. A Psalmo, Marcello, followed, sung the female pupils. A quartetto by Haydn for two violins, viola, and violoncello, was really extremely well played by Masters C. A. Seymour, H. G. Blagrove, W. H. Phipps, C. Lucas. In a concerto on the pianoforte Miss Chancellor was most deservedly applauded; as was Miss Goodwin in an otetto. They have both great facility in execution, mark their music well, and play with spirit, freedom, and effect. C. S. Packer, in a concertnnte, touched the pianoforte in very masterly style, but the instrument is hardly worthy extraordinary attention, and though pleasing in a drawing room, can rarely give celebrity to the performer. We were astonished to find the name of Handel excluded from the bill of fare, and that of Bochsa inserted as a composer not less than three times. This is monstrous, and should be amended. In the things given as Mr. Bochsa's compositions there was nothing new; they were made from French ballets and all the hackneyed music the King's Theatre. The frippery is pleasing enough in its proper place; but it can never improve the taste, the judgraent, the science, or the feeliog, of the pupil. We notice this impertinence once, for we have yet to learn what claims Mr. Bochsa has to such distinction, as to have three, or even one of his pasticcios performed by the pupils of the Roval Academy of Music, whether in public or in private. With the exception of these trumpery displays, the whole of the instrumental department might be commended, and even in these abortions the pupils evinced great talent and for Letter things. Dr. Crotch attended, but we cannot imagine that the selection of the performances rested with a musician of his fine taste and solid acquirements.

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The morning post (28 March 1825), 3

A Concert was performed by the Pupils of this Institution on Friday evening, at the Hanover-square Rooms, under the immediate patronage of the Vice-Piesidents, and if we may estimate the quality of the merit displayed, by the quantity of applause bestowed, we may pronounce it superlative.

The progress the young Gentlemen have made since their last public exhibition is wonderful; their spirited performance of MOZART's difficult symphony, Jupiter, quite astonished the company, and elicited the warmest marks of their approbation. Dr. CROTCH's beautiful quartetto of "Lo! star-led Chiefs," was sung extremely well, by Misses M. BELLCHAMBERS and PORTER, CHARLES LUCAS, and C. S. PACKER, and the chaste accompaniments, were delicately executed by the band. MOZART's quartetto in D, for two violins, a tenor and bass, was performed in a very superior manner, particularly the beautiful andante, by Little BLAGROVE, SEYMOUR, PHIPPS, (pupils of Mr. F. CRAMER), and C. Lucas, pupil of LINDLEY. Miss Chancellor executed the first movement of DUSSEK's celebrated Military Concerto on the pianoforte, in a manner that reflected the greatest credit on herself and her eminent master, Mr. J. B. CRAMER. ROSSINI's fine Finale to the first act of II Tancredi, brought the whole choir into action. There were nearly twenty young Ladies ranged in front of the Orchestra, dressed uniformly, whose modest demeanour aad genteel appearance, rendered the scene a very pleasing one. The Finale was exceedingly well performed, particularly the slow movement "Gl'infelice affetti miei," by Miss J. BELLCHAMBERS, Miss CHANCELLOR, Masters LUCAS and PACKER, which called forth repeated cries of "bravo! bravo!" The whole was encored.

The second act commenced with Cherubini's Anacreon, and played with such spirit and effect, that we could scarcely fancy ourselves listening to mere children; towards the conclusion, a Crescendo passage for the violin, was executed so neatly, and yet with such energy, that it was interrupted by loud plaudits, which by the bye, though well intended, were not judiciously timed, but we plead guilty ourselves. Master PRICE, son of Mr. PRICE principal flute player to Drury-lane Theatre, performed a Solo, by TULOU, on that instrument, delightfully, and gave promise of a second NICHOLSON. To this succeeded a Quartetto, for Voice, Pianoforte, Harp, and Violin, by Miss J. BELLCHAMBERS, PHIPPS, NIELSON and MAWKES. The subject was a ballad by BLANGINI, "Nunzia ognor di dolci incanti" sung by Miss BELLCHAMBERS, with obligito solos, selected from the works of MOSCHELES, MAYSEDER and BOCHSA, as intermediate symphonies, exquisitely executed by each Performer - encored. Then followed MOZART's Sestetto from Don Giovanni, "Sola, sola in bujo loco," and the evening's entertainment closed with WEBER's Overture to Der Freischutz.

That we may meet with many children possessing extraordinary abilities, we grant; but to place together a number of boys, who shall execute difficult compositions, and, above all, accompany vocal pieces in a manner that would not disgrace so many veterans, would be considered wonderful in any but this wonderful age.

We learn that Mr. BOCHSA has the sole management of the orchestra, and that he has taken immense pains to bring it to what it now is. IT is allowed that Mr. BOCHSA is the best writer for the harp, he also writes well for the pianoforte, and no man can fathom a score with greater facility; that he has proved himself an excellent conductor of an instrumental band, the result of Friday night fully proves. We have only now to add, and we are sure we shall be borne out by those who were present, that no Concert ever excited more interest, or afforded more general satisfaction.

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The quarterly musical magazine and review 7 (1825), 152-53, 408-09 (DIGITISED)

. . . We come now to the means by which study is connected with performance. On entering the Academy, the pupil (or parent) has the liberty of choosing the instrument to which he wishes to devote his attention. With this choice the Academy never interferes, unless a manifestly better direction of time and ability can be pointed out. But as the desire to acquire a knowledge of those instruments which are the most likely to lead to rank and emolument in the profession would produce an uniformity fatal to some of the best purposes of the school, every boy is taught to perform on some other, and it is thus the diversity necessary for orchestral practice and combination is obtained at the same time that the knowledge of the pupil is extended, and he is enabled to take some part in a concert. We have lately attended the orchestral rehearsals and the public performances, and it is but justice to admit the progress of the students. The precision cannot be too much commended: they play well in tune, they take up the points, observe the pianos and fortes in their various gradations, and exhibit so much intelligence in all the parts of their performance, that it is impossible not to perceive that such instruction and such practice must make fine musicians. We have rarely indeed witnessed a more interesting spectacle than this young band. At one of these rehearsals an overture, the composition of Phipps, was played with admirable precision. The style of Haydn had obviously caught the aspirant's fancy; consequently his production is in the manner of that master, but it is highly creditable. Indeed it is no small honour to a lad of sixteen that any thing he could produce can be endwed in juxta-position with such symphonies as those of Haydn and Mozart. But we can truly say the overture afforded us great pleasure. Lucas and Mudie have also written overtures of much merit. Of the concerto playing, upon the several instruments, we may speak in almost unlimited terms, taking, as we necessarily do, the allowance for the age and period of instruction. Several of the pupils are now admirable performers. The Committee of the Academy distinguish the meritorious by an annual distribution of prizes, which the pupils afterwards wear at the public performances.

Agreeably to the rules, rehearsals take place at two o'clock every Saturday, and once a month there is a public concert at the Academy. We shall now give two or three of the bills. The selections will shew what even judicious masters think it prudent for the pupils to attempt - and such men are not likely to put their reputation to the hazard: of their success indeed we have already taken upon ourselves to speak, and we may safely appeal to all those who attend these performances to ratify our opinion.

Symphony in D . . . Haydn
Quartetto - Misses J. Bellchambers, Porter, Watson, and C. Lucas - "Sento in petto un freddo gelo" . . . Cimarosa
Solo, Violoncello - C. Lucas . . . Romberg
Serenata - Misses Grant, Bellchambers, C. Lucas, and C. S. Packer - Harp, Miss Shee - Horn, W. M. Daniels - "Oh notte" . . . Paer
Concerto, Piano Forte - Miss Chancellor . . . Dussek
Sestetto - Misses Porter, Grant, Chancellor, J. Bellchambers, C. Lucas, and C. S. Packer - "Sola, sola" . . . Mozart
Symphony (Jupiter) . . . Mozart
Quartetto - Voice, Miss J. Bellchambers - Piano Forte, W. H. Phipps - Violin, T. Mawkes - Harp, E. Nielson . . . Moscheles, Mayseder, and Bochsa
Duetto - C. Lucas and C. S. Packer - "Vanne deh lascia, oh Dio!" . . . Paer
Overture to Der Freyschutz . . . Weber

SATURDAY, MARCH 5th, 1825.
Symphony in D . . . Mozart
Quartetto - Misses J. Bellchambers and Porter, C. Lucas, and C. S. Packer - "Non ti fidar" . . . Mozart
Symphony Concertante - Two Violins, H. B. Blagrove and C. A. Seymour . . . Winter
Trio - Misses J. Bellchambers and Watson, and C. Lucas - "O dolce e caro istante" . . . Cimarosa
Fantasia, Harp, with Orchestral Accompaniments, Miss Shee . . . Bochsa
Sestetto - (Finale of the 1st Act of II Matrimonio Segreto), "Tu mi dice" - Misses J. Bellchambers, Grant, Chancellor, and Watson; Chas. Lucas and C. S. Packer . . . Cimarosa

* For a report of the first see vol. 6, page 80.

[153] PART II.
Overture (MS.) . . . C. Lucas, Pupil of the Royal Academy of Music.
Duetto - Misses Grant and Porter - "Su l'aria" . . . Mozart
Concerto, Piano Forte - Miss Dickens . . . Woelfl.
Trio - Misses J. Bellchambers and Watson, and C. Lucas - "Mi lasci o Madre amata" . . . Winter
Overture to Anacreon . . . Cherubini

SATURDAY, APRIL 9th, 1825. PART I. Overture in C, No. 10 . . . Haydn
Coro, "Tacete ombre" (Il Cid.) . . . Sacchini
Concerto, Piano Forte - T. M. Mudie (Pupil of Mr. Potter) . . . Beethoven
Quintetto - Misses Watson, Porter, Chancellor, and Charles Lucas and C. S. Packer - "Hm, hm" (Il Flauto Magico) . . . Mozart
Trio, Violin, T. Mawkes - Viola, W. M. Daniells, (Pupils of Mr. Spagnoletti,) and Violoncello, C. Lucas, (Pupil of Mr. Lindley) . . . Rolla
Finale to the First Act of Il Tancredi, "Ciel! che intesi" . . . Rossini
The principal parts by Misses J. Bellchambers, Chancellor, Watson, Porter, Charles Lucas, and C. S. Packer.
Overture (MS.) . . . T. M. Mudie, (Pupil of the Royal Academy of Music.)
Introduction and Quartetto - Miss J. Bellchambers, Porter, Grant, and Watson - "Oh stelle soccorso" - (Il Flauto Magico) . . . Mozart
Grand Variations, Piano Forte - Miss Goodwin, (Pupil of Mr. Beale), with Orchestral Accompaniments . . . Moscheles
Quartetto - Misses J. Bellchambers, Porter, Grant, and C. Lucas - " Sento in petto un freddo gelo" . . . Cimarosa
Overture to Preciosa . . . Weber

However good the general selection in these bills may be, there is one attendant fact so palpable, that it cannot fail to draw down observation - which is, that there appears no provision for the cultivation of English singing. English instrumental music must we apprehend be given up, for in point of fact there can hardly be said to be any. We feel that we are now touching upon very delicate not to say very dangerous ground; but as our enquiry is after truth, we are not afraid to look her in the face. English singing cannot be said to be cultivated in the academy. This is certainly matter of reproach in an institution purporting to be national . . . (DIGITISED)

. . . Nothing can more justly tend to confirm its claims to support than the fact that the pupils are proceeding meritoriously in their studies, and that their deserts are allowed by the competent professors at the head of the establishment, and by the committee who so vigilantly and so constantly watch its interests and its progress. It will be remembered that a distribution of prizes is made yearly to those students who have been thought to merit such distinction, after the public concert. It took place this year on the 30th of June, at the Hanover-square Rooms (by permission of the Right Hon. the Directors of the Ancient Concert) and the scheme was as follows:

OVERTURE (Chasse du Jeune Henri) - Mehul.
QUARTETTO , Misses M. Bellchambers and Chancellor, Charles Lucas and C. S. Packer - "Lo! star-led chiefs." (Palestine). - Dr. Crotch.
SYMPHONY CONCERTANTE, two Violins, C. A. Seymour and H. G. BlagroTe, Pupils of Mr. F. Cramer. - Spohr.
SCENA ed ARIA, Miss J. Bellchambers - "Ah perfido." - Beethoven.
CONCERTO, Piano Forte, C. S. Packer, Pupil of Mr. Potter. - Steibelt.
FINALE to the first Act of Il Don Giovanni - "Presto, presto;" the principal parts by Misses M. and J. Bellchambers, Grant, and Watson, Charles Lucas and C. S. Packer. - Mozart.
Part II.
SEPTETTO (MS.) - Harp, Miss Shee, Pupil of Mr. Bochsa; Flute, D. H. Brett; Oboe, M. A. M. Cooke; Clarionet, T. M. Mudie; Horn, W. M. Daniel; Violoncello, C. Lucas; and Contra Basso, T. J. E. Harrington. - Bochsa.
TRIO, Miss Grant, Charles Lucas and C. S. Packer - "Oh Nume." (La Gazza Ladra.) - Rossini.
CONCERTO, Violin, T. Mawkes, Pupil of Mr. Spagnoletti. - Mayseder.
PREGHIERA from Mosè in Egitto - "Dal tuo stellato;" the principal parts by Misses M. and J. Bellchambers, and C. S. Packer; Harp Obligato, E.I. Neilson, Pupil of Mr. Bochsa. - Rossini.
FANTASIA, Piano Forte, Miss Chancellor, Pupil of Mr. J. B. Cramer. - Cramer.
OVERTURE (MS.) - C. Lucas, Pupil of Dr. Crotch.

[409] Nothing could be more creditable than the entire performance. Seymour and Blagrove played excellently, and little Mawkes like a prodigy. Miss Chancellor's fantasia was well executed, and what is better, well expressed. The overture by Lucas was an exceedingly good composition. The singing manifested the good taste and the effects of the scientific instruction of Mr. Crivelli.

The names of the pupils to whom prizes were awarded, were read, and the delivery by her Royal Highness the Princess Augusta, took place in the Directors' box . . . The following is the list of the pupils, of their rewards, and the causes for which they were given.

Distribution of Prizes, Midsummer, 1825.

. . . C. S. packer - Bronze medal - For composition . . .

[410] We may conclude our present brief notice with stating, that Lord Burghersh, the president, having obtained leave of absence from his embassy, is returned for a short residence in England, and has already exerted himself to decrease the expences and increase the income of the academy with success. Through his Lordship's intervention Signor Velluti has been induced to superintend the instruction of such of the pupils in singing as are in a sufficient state of preparation to benefit by his tuition . . .

Royal Academy of Music, library, MS465; from online catalogue record (

Round: The academy roll call to dinner (We all love our homes), by William Crotch (1775-1847) [1826]

"To Holmes, Hart, Mudie, Nielson, Lucas, Pye, Seymour, Cooke & Packer this effusion is inscribed by the Author"

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The harmonicon (1828), 20 (DIGITISED)

A concent was performed on Thursday noon, the 20th ultimo, in the Hanover-square Rooms, by the pupils of this establishment, which both surprised and pleased us: for we were not prepared to witness so great an advance as those young people have made within the last twelve months, and were gratified, in no ordinary degree, by some pieces we heard, considered as musical performances, and independently of the pleasure which the exertion of youthful talents must always excite. The program (to which we are sorry to see the vulgar lottery-office term of scheme still applied) consisted of Mozart's symphony in D; "Now heaven in fullest glory shone," from The Creation; Sarti's quartet, "Dorina, mia cara"; Hummel's Septuor; Guglielmi's "Gratias agimus tibi"; a violoncello solo, of Dotzauer; Rossini's duet, "Se tu m'ami"; the overture to Fidelio; a new recitative and air, by C. S. Packer, one of the pupils; a duet from Paer's Agnese, "Qual sepolcro"; concerto, piano-forte, Hummel; Rossini's duet, "Un segreto d'importanza"; and the finale to the first act of Don Giovanni . . .

The new vocal piece, the words from an Italian sacred drama, La Morte d'Abelle, is exceedingly creditable to the youthful composer; it proves him to possess both a genius for invention, and industry to render his powers available. The recitative, describing Cain's agonies of remorse and despair, is full of talent and judgment: the accompaniments are, in every way, of the most masterly kind, and the harmonies, in many instances, are absolutely new, and highly effective. The first movement of the air is melodious and well-suited to the words: the second full of spirit, but less original. We recommend the juvenile artist to alter the opening of the recitative, which at present is too much like the commencement of "Deeper and deeper still." The change of a note or two will suffice.

If our praise and good wishes be of any value to this ingenious eléve, he has them. Should he persevere he can hardly fail. He seems to think for himself - not rashly, or in any way indicating a redundant share of self-complacency, but just up to that point which renders him too proud, too independent, to condescend to the humiliating practices of the herd of imitators.

[Advertisement], The Berkshire chronicle, Windsor Herald, and Forest Vale, and general advertiser (10 May 1828), 2

Just published. SCENA, RECITATIVE, Basta Basta, ED ARIA, Del fallo m'Avvedo; from Metastasio's La Morte d'Abelle, sung by Mr. A. SAPIO. - Composed and respectfully dedicated (by permission) to the Right Hon. the Committee of the Royal Academy of Music, By C. S. PACKER, Member of that institution. London: published for the Author, by S. Chappel, 135, New Bond-street, and to be had of Mr. C. Packer, Music Saloon, 123, Castle-street, Reading.

"NEW MUSIC", The athenaeum 2/34 (18 June 1828), 539 (DIGITISED)

A very correct, clever, and well-imagined production, certainly exhibiting excellent promise about the incipient production of so young a writer . . .

Scena Recitativo, "Basta! Basta!" ed aria, "Del fallo m'avvedo." The words from Metastasio's "La Morte d'Abelle. Sung by Mr. A. Sapio; composed, and respectfully dedicated (by permission) to the Right Honourable the Committee of the Royal Academy of Music, by C. S. Packer, Member of that Institution, Chappell. 3s.

A VERY correct, clever, and well-imagined production, certainly exhibiting excellent promise about the incipient production of so young a writer. We cannot but fear that the vocal part, being necessarily written (to be sung by A. Sapio) in the bass clef, this scena will scarcely obtain circulation sufficient to render it popular, and to repay the expense of publication; but it deserves, therefore, the greater credit, from the independence with which it is offered to notice.

The recitativo abounds with ingenious modulation, and must be very effective with orchestral accompaniments; the andante Larghetto (in a flat, 3-4 time) exhibits a pleasing aria to the words "Del fallo m'avvedo;" and the concluding Presto Furioso, is clever and characteristic.

[Advertisement], The Berkshire chronicle (29 November 1828), 1

ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC, PATRON, HIS MOST GRACIOUS MAJESTY. MR. C. PACKER HAS the honor to announce, that having obtained permission of the RIGHT HONOURABLE THE DIRECTORS OF THE ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC to give a CONCERT, to be performed the Students of that Institution, the Concert will take place (by permission of the Worshipful the Mayor), at the TOWN HALL, Reading, On THURSDAY Evening, December 11, UNDER THE MOST DISTINGUISHED PATRONAGE.


Every department of the Orchestra will filled the Students of the ROYAL ACADEMY, and will be complete and highly effective. After the Concert there will be a BALL, for which J. WEIPPERT'S celebrated Quadrille Band is engaged.

Single Tickets (including refreshments) half a guinea each, or twelve tickets five guineas, to be had of Mr. C. PACKER, 123, Castle-street, and the Berkshire Chronicle and Mercury Offices. BOOKS OF THE CONCERT SIX PENCE EACH. 123, Castle Street, Nov. 21, 1828.

"ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE", The globe (9 December 1828), 2

. . .Some of our Morning centemporaries have described the performance last night of the Pupils of the Royal Academy of Music, in the Italian opera of Il Barbiere Seviglia, as an affair of mere promise, and others have passed it over altogether . . . To us, however, the most-interesting sight in front of the curtain was the orchestra, which was thus composed: ORCHESTRA . . . Violins: . . .. W. Packer; . . . Cellos: . . . F. A. Packer . . .; . . . Maestro al piano: Mr. Packer . . .

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC. MR. C. PACKER'S CONCERT", The Berkshire chronicle (13 December 1828), 2

. . . we were present at Mr. Packer's concert in our Town hall, on Thursday night, when the performers were pupils of the Royal Academy of Music, and we, in common with the hundreds who attended on the occasion, experienced unqualified delight in such a treat, so truly rich and varied . . . amongst the company present, we noticed her Grace the Duchess of Wellington, the Marquis and Marchioness of Downshire, Sir C. S. Hunter . . .

. . . The Concertante Duet, composed by Mr. C. S. Packer, for the piano-forte and violin, evinces the most refined taste and brilliancy of conception; it was performed by himself and Mr. C. Lucas, in a manner that might be distinctly said to have called for the most reapturous and well-desreved applause from every part of the room. The Scena, "Basta, Basta", also composed by our young townsman, being the first composition published by any pupil of the Institution, has been fully criticised in the musical reviews, and spoken of highly. Our expectations were fully realised - it is one of those [?] effusions of genius which points with certainty to the first eminence of professional ability, and was sung in the most effective and finest manner, by Mr. A. Sapio . . .

This was the FIRST performance of the Royal Academy of Music in the country . . .

"MR. PACKER'S CONCERT", The Berkshire chronicle (20 December 1828), 2

The distinguised but certainly not undeserved success, which has marked the first performance of the pupils of the Royal Academy in this town, must be most gratifying to Mr. Packer's feelings as a professional man, as well as a father and a native of the borough. On no previous occasion had there been a more numerous and respectable assemblage . . . [A list of prominent local attendees follows . . .] The performances generally gave unqualified satisfaction, and Her Grace the Duchess appeared to be highly gratified. We have no doubt, after such an auspicious and successful first essay, but what Mr. Packer will be again induced to place the extraordinary accomplishments of the Royal Academy pupils before the enlightened and tasteful tribunal of a Reading audience.

Il fanatico per la musica, opera buffa, the music by Mayer, with additional music by other celebrated composers, arranged by Signor de Begnis, expressly for the first representation of the pupils of the Royal Academy of Music, at the Theatre Royal, English Opera House, January, 1829, the whole under the direction of Signor de Begnis (London: Seguin, 1829) (DIGITISED)

. . . ORCHESTRA . . . Leader, C. A. SEYMOUR; Conductor, C. S. PACKER . . . Violins . . . G. PACKER . . .

"LONDON. MONDAY, DECEMBER 7", Salisbury and Winchester journal (14 December 1829), 1

On Saturday evening Rossini's Italiana in Algieri was performed by the pupils of the Royal Academy of Music at the King's Theatre. The principal characters devolved on Miss Childe, Miss Tucker, Miss Bromley, Mr. Seguin, Mr. Brizzi, and Mr. C. S. Packer. Miss Childe sustained her part in a manner which would have done credit to many a more experienced prima donna on the Italian stage. A great improvement has taken place both in the compass and flexibility of her voice; and the progress of her studies had enabled her do ample justice to the difficult music assigned to Isabella. Miss Tucker evinced great progress of vocal attainment, and holds out good promise. Miss Bromley distinguished herself as an able vocalist. Mr. Seguin's voice has acquired a deeper and fuller tone, and its cultivation has evidently been industriously kept up. Indeed, is difficult to meet with a bass voice at once so flexible, and of so deep a compass in a person of his years. Mr. Brizzi's musical taste and style of singing have undergone great improvement. Mr. Packer filled his part with much comic humour, and to the great amusement of the audience. One of the most remarkable features of this performance was the superior manner in which the orchestra went through its duties.

"KING'S THEATRE", The harmonicon (January 1830), 43 (DIGITISED)

On Saturday the 5th ult. the pupils of the Royal Academy of Music performed Rossini's Italiana in Algeri, in the great room, - now fitted up with a stage and scenery, - of the King's Theatre. Considering the difficulties the Committee had to encounter, owing to the desertion of one or two of those who were bound in gratitude to render the institution every possible assistance, the opera was got up tolerably well. So far as singing was concerned, the parts of Mustafa (Seguin) and Isabella (Miss Childe) were surprisingly well performed. Mr. Brizzi has so little voice, that Lindor, in his hands, was any thing but a first character; and the character of Taddeo, - good-naturedly undertaken at very short notice by Mr. Packer, the ingenious composer, who does not pretend to any vocal talent - though acted with spirit, suffered from want of physical force in its representation.

[Advertisement], The Reading mercury (12 April 1830), 3

ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC. PATRON: His Most Gracious Majesty.

Mr. PACKER HAS the honour to announce, that the Right Hon. the DIRECTORS of the ROYAL ACADEMY of MUSIC have again permitted him to give a CONCERT, to be performed by the PUPILS of that Institution, (with permission of the Worshipful the Mayor) At the TOWN-HALL, READING, On THURSDAY EVENING, APRIL 15, 1830



Solo Instrumental Performers: Violin Mr. H. G. BLAGROVE; Viola Mr. W. DORRELL; Violoncello, Mr. C. LUCAS; Double Bass, Mr. J. HOWELL; Flute, Mr. BRETT; Oboe, Mr. H. A. M. COOKE; Corni, Mr. DANIEL and Mr. HOPGOOD; Fagotto, Mr. BAKER; Piano-Forte, Mr. C. S. PACKER; Harp, Mr. F. A. PACKER.

Leader, Mr. C. A. SEYMOUR; Conductor, Mr. C. S. PACKER. The whole under the Direction of Mr. C. PACKER. Every department of the Orchestra will be filled the Students of the Royal Academy, and will be complete and highly effective.

OVERTURE - L'Italiani in Algieri . . . Rossini.
GLEE - "In peace Love tunes," . . . Misses CHILDE & WILLIAMS, & Mr. E. SEGUIN . . . Attwood.
Duo - "Ah non Lasciarmi," (Didone,) Misses CHILDE and WILLIAMS . . . Mercandante.
QUARTETTO - "Mi Manca la Voce," Misses CHILDE and WILLIAMS, Messrs. BRIZZI and E. SEGUIN, (Harp Obligato, Mr. F. A. PACKER.) . . . Rossini.
SCENA - "The last Man," Mr. E. SEGUIN . . . Callcott.
QUARTETT - Flute, Oboe, Horn, and Bassoon, Messrs. BRETT, H. A. M. COOKE, DANIEL, and BAKER . . . Tulou.
GRAND SEPTUOR - Piano-forte, Flute, Oboe, Horn, Viola, Violoncello, & Double Bass, Messrs. C. S. PACKER, BRETT, COOKE, HOPGOOD, DORRELL, C. LUCASS, and J. HOWELL . . . Hummell.
TRlO -"Eccomi a te Gualtiero," (ll Pirata), Miss CHILDE, Mess. BßlZZi & E. SEGUIN . . . Bellini.

Overture - Oberon . . . C. M. Von Weber.
Ballad - "I'll watch for thee," Miss WILLIAMS . . . Sir J. Stevenson.
Duetto - "Deve Vai," (Guillaume Tell), Messrs. BRIZZI and E. SEQUIN . . . Rossini.
Solo Violin - Mr. H. G. BLAGROVE . . . Mayseder.
SCENA - "Ah me infelice," Miss CHILDE, composed and dedicated, by permission, to Her Grace the Duchess of Wellington, by C. S. Packer.
Grand Trio - Piano-Forte, Harp, and Violoncello, Messrs. C. S. PACKER, F. A. Packer, and C. LUCAS . . . Bochsa.
Duett - "Come, let's be gay," Misses CHILDE and WILLIAMS . . . C. M. Von Weber.
Finale - "God save the King, newly arranged expressly for this Concert, by C. S. Packer.

After the Concert there will be a BALL.

Single Tickets, Half-a-Guinea wach - Seven Tickets for Three Guinea - or Twelve Tickets for Five Guineas, (Tea end Coffee included), to be had of Mr. PACKER Castle-street; the Office of this Paper; and of Mr. G. H. Lamb, bookseller, High-street, Reading. Doors opened at Seven, and the Performance to commence at Eight o'Clock, precisely. Books of the Concert, Sixpence each.

"ROYAL ACADEMY CONCERT", The Berkshire chronicle (10 April 1830), 2

We present our readers with the full particulars of Mr. Packer's concert, and on no occasion have our predictions been more completely verified than on the present. - We stated that it would offer a superior gratification to the lovers of good music; and we may now add, that it would be impossible to bring together into one evening's performance a greater variety of more beautiful compositions: Amongst others, we perceive there is a Scena, by Mr. C. S.Packer, dedicated to her Grace the Duchess of Wellington. We have never heard this piece performed, nor has yet been subjected to the ordeal criticism but we are convinced, from its announcement, that it will add to the highly-merited reputation of the author of "Basta, Basta," which drew forth such elaborate critique in the Harmonicon of last year. - First amongst the vocalists stands Miss Childe: this lady has indeed realized all that was anticipated of her early talent, and ranks with the most accomplished of our native singers. When Miss Williams was here at the last grand concert, she was so much indisposed as to be unable to perform; but from the acknowledged ability of this young lady, we anticipate much, as we also from Mr. Brizzi. Mr. E. Seguin is already too well known to call for any observation; he is allowed to be the legitimate successor to the inimitable Bartleman more we need not say, particularly to those of our readers who heard him on a previous occasion. Amongst the instrumentalists, there are many names which revive the most agreeable recollections of past pleasure. Our limits will not allow us to particularize their individual merit, but we cannot omit observing, how much we are gratified to see the names of Mr. Blagrove, Mr. Cooke, and Mr. Lucas, and of the able and talented leader, Mr. C. Seymour. Mr. C. S. Packer appears again both a composer and a performer, and we have no doubt will again delight his hearers and friends by the same masterly and elegant style of playing, which distinguished his last performance here. Mr. F. A. Packer makes his debut as a harp player in a trio (with Mr. C. S. Packer and Mr. C. Lucas), and from all we have heard, are confident this young gentleman will realise our high expectations of him. The whole arrangement reflects the greatest credit on Mr. Packer, whether we consider these concerts only as affording a great musical treat to the town and neighbourhood, or as a means of bringing before the public, the members of this institution so purely national, and who have already fulfilled the hope of its being permanently useful in cultivating and encouraging the native talent of the country, under the fostering patronage of our most excellent Monarch. There is an intensity of interest felt for the success of this institution, and the distinguished patronage with which Mr. Packer is honoured, leaves no doubt that the present concert will be attended by an exceedingly brilliant and numerous audience, as nothing short of that can repay him the anxiety and very heavy expense, which we know to be attendant on these concerts. After the concert there will be a ball - and, on the whole, we confidently anticipate an evening of most delightful and rational entertainment.

"MR. PACKER'S CONCERT", The Reading mercury (19 April 1830), 3

MR. PACKER'S CONCERT on Thursday evening, by the pupils of the Royal Academy, boasted a most numerous audience. The vocal music chosen for the occasion was a selection from the works of Rossini, Mercandante, Tulon, Weber, Callcott, Attwood, Hummell, and Bellini. Miss CHILDE, whose voice is an extensive soprano, acquitted herself in a manner which evinced much progress in the science. In the Scena, "Ah me infelice," she was particularly successful. - Miss WILLIAMS sang with great taste and execution and was hightly applauded in very pretty Ballad, "I'll watch for thee." - The Quartetto, "Mi Mancha la voci," was very ably given by Misses CHILDE and WILLIAMS, Mr. BRIZZI, and Mr. E. SEGUIN, and they all displayed superior vocal acquirements. - Mr. E. SEGUIN gave the Scena, "The last man," in an effective manner, as to place him in the first rank of his profession. - Mr. BRIZZI's talents have been well cultivated and he did full justice to the [?] alloted to him. - The other vocal pieces were executed in the first style, and received the most vehement marks of approbation from the distinguished company which honoured the performance with their presence.

The Grand Trio, Pianoforte, Harp and Violoncello, Messrs. C. S. Packer, F. A. Packer, and C. Lucas, abounds in expressive and brilliant passages, particularly calculated to exhibit the mechanical powers as well as the musical judgment of the performers, who did credit to the composition, and received great and highly deserved applause. - Mr. SEYMOUR, who was the leader, executed the solos with a great deal of assurance and precision, thus showing his capacity a solo performer to be equal to his competency as a leader. - We must not omit mentioning the orchestra, which was entirely composed of pupils of the establishment, and who acquitted themselves in a manner fully worthy the applause directed to them more than once in the course of the evening. Their execution of the overture "Oberon" received the rare compliment of encore.

"Concert of the Royal Academy of Music at Reading", The Berkshire chronicle (1 May 1830), 4

Want of time and room, rather than of inclination, obliged us last week to notice this delightful concert in very brief and general terms; but we are sure our musical readers would scarcely excuse the omission a second time of a more detailed criticism on the performances of the evening. To those who heard the pupils of this most deserving institution in the same place last year, we cannot but think a very marked and gratifying advance towards perfection must have been perceptible; and this more particularly in the vocal department .. In the the beautiful Scena, the composition of Mr. C. S. Packer, which, much and deservedly as it was admired, woule have been better appreciated, had the youthful conductor placed it in an earlier part of the evening, when the powers of the performers were more equal to its difficulties, and to give effect to it expressive harmonies . . .

. . . Miss Williams . . . in the ballad "I'll watch for thee" was loudly encoured. We cannot help here noticing the beautiful accompaniment of Mr. C. S. Packer to the song, whose requisite delicacy touch, delightfully relieved the somewhat monotonous character of the air itself . . .

It remains for us now more particularly to mention the performances of the two very talented natives of our town, Mr. C. S. end Mr. F. A. Packer, and to congratulate the spirited director of these concerts, on the possession of two sons of such high excellence and higher promise. Though there was not much, either in the harp obligato accompaniment to "Mi manca voce," or in the trio with Mr. C. S. Packer and Mr. Lucas, to display rapidity of execution, yet the fullness of tone and steadiness and precision of touch of Mr. F. Packer, showed great command and knowledge of his instrument. Mr. C. S. Packer, his part of Hummel's Septour or rather pianoforte concerto, left nothing to be wished: the wildest passages of that composition gained a harmony and polish by the rapidity and finish of his touch, that nothing but science capable of appreciating the designs of Hummel, and fingers to taught rival his, alike in strength and celebrity, could confer on them. The other performers in this piece deserved and gained much praise . . . On the whole we are sure we are justified in stating, that notwithstanding the scientific nature of the generality of the music, more adapted for the frequenters of the Philharmonic, than to catch the ears of a mixed audience, very few concerts have ever been given with greater credit to the performers and conductors, or more pleasure to the auditors. (Omitted last week.)

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The harmonicon 8 (1830), 322 

Charles Packer's name is not on the list of those who had completed their tuition

"VOCAL", The harmonicon 9 (1831), 68, 124

Review of Oh me infelice/Crudo ciel (68)

. . . Nor were we less gratified by Mr. C. S. PACKER (a pupil of Mr. Potter), who played Hummel's Indian Fantasia on the piano-forte in a very superior manner . . .

"MUSIC. OPERA CONCERT ROOM", The London literary gazette and journal of belles lettres, arts, sciences . . . (25 June 1831), 412 (DIGITISED)

The pupils of the Royal Academy of Music are already beginning to take upon themselves all the rights, privileges, and immunities belonging to the profession; and they seem well entitled to do so. Mr. Charles Packer, a young musician who has already accomplished much, and bids fair to do more, gave a concert at this room on Monday, which we notice on account of the singulare exhibition of juvenile talent that it presented . . . Mr. Packer himself played capitally a concerto of Hummel, and part of a duet with Mr. Potter, in both of which the young professor proved himself to be a master of the instrument. Some of his own vocal compositions were performed by Lablache and others; and we were particularly struck by a trio called Di Luna, which was encored. The room was well filled.

Letter, Mary Russell Mitford, Three Mile Cross, 13 December 1831, to Miss Jephson, Castle Martyr, Ireland; in A. G. L'Estrange (ed.), The life of Mary Russell Mitford . . . related in a selection of her letters to her friends . . . in three volumes, vol. 2 (London: Richard Bentley, 1870), 329 (DIGITISED)

. . . At present I am altogether immersed in music. I am writing an opera for and with Charles Packer; and you would really be diverted to find how learned I am become on the subject of choruses and double choruses and trios and septets. Very fine music carries me away more than anything - but then it must be very fine. Our opera will be most splendid - a real opera - all singing and recitative - blank verse of course, and rhyme for the airs, with plenty of magic - an eastern fairy tale . . .

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The London evening standard (16 April 1832), 3

The pupils of this institution performed a Concert on Saturday at the Hanover-square rooms. The vocalists were Miss Childe, Miss Turner, Miss Osbourne, Miss Wagstaff; Messrs. Allen and Stretton. Miss Childe sang a dramatic scene, written Miss Mitfurd, and composed by C. S. Packer, with much applause; the concluding chorus, "Oh, pleasant land of France, farewell," was exceedingly good and effective. Masters Gledhill and Richards performed a concertante duo for violins in a highly creditable manner; and the band played, in a superior style, Handel's occasional overture and Beethoven's symphony in D; but the star of the morning was Miss Dettmer, a pupil Mr. J. B. Cramer's, who performed a concerto of Hummel's on the pianoforte with a degree of taste, precision, expression, and brilliancy, that was quite astonishing for one so young, for she appeared not above twelve years of age; she reflects infinite credit on her highly talented instructor, and gives promise of becoming performer of the very first order in the true and legitimate style of pianoforte playing. Mr. Seymour led the first act, and Mr. Patey the second. The room was crowded with the friends and patrons of the Academy.

"ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC", The Morning advertiser (16 April 1832), 2

On Saturday morning the second concert of the season of the pupils of the Royal Academy took place, at the Hanover-square Rooms, before a crowded and fashionable audience. The chief novelty in the selection was a dramatic scene, the words by Miss Mitford, the music by C. S. Packer of the Academy, which was sung by Miss Child. The subject is Mary Queen of Scots returning from France to Scotland, after the death of her first husband King Francis. The first few lives [sic - lines] are a literal translation of her well-known song, "Adieu plaisant Pays de France." The following is a portion of the introductory lines of Miss Mitford's scena:

Oh, pleasant land of France, farewell!
My country dear,
Where many year,
In peace and bliss I hoped do dwell,
Oh, pleasant land of France, farewell!"


So sang the Scottish Queen what time she stood
On her proud galley's prow, and saw the shores
Of France receding, the beloved shores
That she should never see again! Big tears
Drop't from her eyes, and from her lips the words
Broke in fond repetition, "Pleasant land,
Farewell! farewell!" Then silently she stood,
The lovely one! silent and motionless
Amidst her weeping train; her lofty head
Thrown back, - her fair cheek colourless, - her eyes
Fixed on the cloudy heaven.

Miss Child gave both aria and recitative in a very tasteful and feeling manner. Beethoven's symphony in D, and some of Handel's compositions, elicited marked applause.

Mary Russell Mitford, Our village: sketches of rural character and scenery, volume 5 (London: Whitaker, Treacher, & Co., 1832), 298-99 (DIGITISED)

MARY, QUEEN OF SCOTS, FAREWELL TO FRANCE . . .. "Oh! pleasant land of France, farewell . . ."

. . . [the printed text begins as above, and continues]

[footnote] . . . The [299] whole of the present short scene has been very finely set by Mr. C. S. Packer, of the Royal Academy of Music, whose talent as a composer will, I believe, be made known to the public in the course of the ensuing winter [1833-34], in the great and arduous attempt of a real English opera on the model of the Italian, or, perhaps, more properly of the German school.

In her introduction dated 9 April 1832, Mitford bade "a late and lingering good-bye to the snug nook called Our Village . . . a half imaginary and half real little spot on the sunny side of Berkshire" (3).

[Advertisement], The Western times (16 March 1833), 1

ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC, LONDON . . . UNDER THE IMMEDIATE PATRNAGE OF THEIR MAJESTIES. H. I. HAYCRAFT, Student of the above Institution, begs respectfully to announce that his CONCERTS ARE FOR THE PRESENT POSTPONED, In consequence of the principal Students of the Royal Academy having been commanded to be in attendance on their Majesties, at Windsor during the Easter Holidays. In fixing a period for the Performances, sufficient notice will be given, to prevent inconvenience to Subscribers. H. I. H. trusts that his arrangements will ensure a continuance of that distinguished patronage has already experienced, and which he has the honour gratefully to acknowledge. Her Majesty having been most graciously pleased to grant leave of absence on the occasion to several Members of HER MAJESTY'S PRIVATE BAND, The following Instrumental Performers are positively engaged: Mr. C. A. SEYMOUR, Leader Ordinary of Her Majesty's Private Band; Mr. H. G. BLAGROVE, Solo Violinist to her Majesty; Mr. C. A. PATEY, Solo Violinist of the King's Theatre; Mr. C. LUCAS, Principal Violoncello, and Composer to her Majesty; Double Baas, Mr. HOWELL, Of the King's Theatre, Philharmonic, and Ancient Concerts; Oboe, Mr. GRATTON COOKE, Of the King's Theatre, Philharmonic, and Ancient Concerts; Horns, Messrs. DANIELLS and MUDIE, Of the King's Theatre, and Theatre Royal, Covent Garden; Harp and Drums, Mr. NICKSON; Trumpets, Messrs. HAYCRAFT and HARPER, Jun; Conductor, Mr. C. S. PACKER. Vocal Performers will announced future advertisements. The profits arising from the Concerts, wiU appropriated IN AID OF THE EXETER DISPENSARY. Subscriptions (One Guinea) received at the Exeter Bank, City Bank, Messrs. Trewmans' and Woolmer's Printing Offices, and Curson's library.

[Advertisement], The morning post (18 June 1833), 1

MR. STRETTON has the honour to announce that his CONCERT, under the Patronage of the Right Hon. Lord Burghersh . . . the Right Hon. Sir Gore Ousley, Bart., will take place at the ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC, Tenterden-street, Hanover-square, by the kind permission of the Noble Director of that Institution, TO-MORROW EVENING, June 19,1838 (to commence at Nine o'Clock). Vocal Performers - Madame De Meric, Miss Bruce, Miss Turner, Mrs. Seguin, Miss Wagstaff; Signor Begrez, Signor Brizzi, Mr. A. D. [? ]. and Mr. Bennett; Mr. Seguin, Signor Giubilei, and Mr. Stretton. Conductor, Mr. C. S. Packer. Leaders, Messrs. Blagrove and Patey. The Band will be numerous and complete. Solo Performers - Pianoforte, Mr. C. S. Packer; Violin, Mr. Blagrove; Violoncello, Mr. Lucas; Harp, Mr. J. B. Chatterton; Contra Basso, Mr. Howell. Tickets Half-a-gninea each, to be bad at the Royal Academy of Music, Tenterden-street, Hanover-square . . .

[Advertisement], The Berkshire chronicle (20 September 1834), 2



MAUREEN." an Irish Ballad; composed and dedicated, by permission, to H. R. H. the Princess Victoria, by F. A. Packer, of R. A. of Music ; the words by Boulger, Esq.

"Come, Kate, with me;" composed and dedicated to Mrs G. Bruin, by F. A. Packer; the words the late Mrs. Field.

"Take the Flower;" composed and dedicated to the Right Hon. Lady Kennedy Erskine, by F. A. Packer; the words from Dr. Beattie's Journal of Residence in Germany.

"I could not dream;" words by W. Boulger, Esq. F. A. Packer.

"I think of thee;" from Goethe's Poems - F. A. Packer.

"Oh think of me;" composed and dedicated to Lady Colvile, by C. S. Packer.

"May Day;" words by Miss Mary Russell Mitford - C. S. Packer.

"How often in that silent hour;" ballad, composed C. S. Packer.

"Basta, Basta," Grand Scena, composed and dedicated to the Right Hon. the Committee of the Royal Academy Music - C. S. Packer.

"De Luna al Raggio;" Terzettino, composed expressly for and dedicated to the Misses Carlisle - C. S. Packer.

"Oh me infelice;" Grand Scena; composed and dedicated, by permission, to her Grace the Duchess of Wellington - C. S. Packer.

Mr. Packer returns his best thanks to his friends and the public for past favors. Anxious by every means in his power to merit a continuance of the same flattering patronage, he has been solicitous to afford to them a choice selection of the newest Musical Publications and the best Instruments, by approved makers, and now respectfully solicits their inspection of some very superior Piccolo Piano Fortes, as well as other, which he is determined to offer for sale or hire on the most liberal terms.

A very superior VIOLINCELLO and CASE (the property of a gentleman) for Sale.

An experienced Tuner sent to any part of the country on the shortest notice.

Sept. 19th, 1834.

[Reviews], The Berkshire chronicle (4 October 1834), 4

MAUREEN, a Ballad, the words W. Boulger, Esq.; the music by F. A. Packer. - This is a pathetic little piece, in which the composer has, with great taste and judgment, preserved the spirit of the poetry, and not, as we have often observed, overlaid it with accompaniments "full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." The air is simple and touching; the words describe, in flowing and elegant verse, the return the exile to the desolate home of his youth. "Maureen" is ballad of very superior order.

COME, KATE, WITH ME - a ballad; the words by Mrs. Field, the music F. A. Packer. - This is a song in a livelier strain than the preceding, and affords us an opportunity of estimating Packer's talent in another kind of composition. There is much grace and spirit displayed in this pleasant little ditty. The poetry is fanciful and appropriate. It gives us much pleasure observe that both these pieces owe their existence to this town [Reading] - and, we hope, will do something to rescue it from the imputation of being one of the most backward - in such pursuits - of any which "the schoolmaster" has visited.

[Advertisement], The Reading mercury (1 December 1834), 3


MR. MORI has the honor to announce to the Nobility, Gentry, and Inhabitants of READING, that he will give A GRAND MORNING CONCERT, On FRIDAY, DEC. 5, 1834, precisely at One o'clock, AT THE TOWN HALL, on which occasion will be performed a Selection of Music, from the Operas of "THE MOUNTIAN SYLPH," composed by Barnett, "GUSTAVUS THE THIRD," ditto Auber; and a Variety of other Compositions . . . Mr. C. S. PACKER will preside at the PIANO-FORTE.

PROGRAMME. PART I . . . Concertante Duet, Violin and Piano-Forte - Mr. MORI and Mr. CHARLES S. PACKER. De Beriot & Osborne . . .

Tickets 7s. each and Family Tickets, to admit four, One Guinea, to be had at Mr. Binfield's and Mr. Packer's Music Warehouses.

"MORI'S MORNING CONCERT", The Reading mercury (1 December 1834), 3

The dilettanti of Reading and its vicinity will be gratified to learn that our talented countryman Mori, is likely to be soon amongst them. He has announced a musical entertainment for the 5th of December, (see advertisement) of the highest possible merit . . . In addition to his own unapproachable talent, Mr. Mori has obtained the co-operation of our highly-talented young townsman, Mr. C. S. Packer, of the Royal Academy of Music, and, we presume, at no trifling expense, secured the services of Mr. H. Phillips, Miss Clara Novello, and Miss Bruce, all vocalists from London, and too eminent to require any comment of ours. His programme is replete with beauties, in addition to compositions which are established in the public favor, he announces several novelties, among which may be classed a Concerto and a Fantaisie to be performed by himself for the first time, a Grand Concertante Duet, Violin and Piano-forte, by himself and Mr. C. S. Packer, and a selection from Barnett's New Opera, the Mountain Sylph . . .

Sadak and Kalasrade (Charles Sandys Packer, 1835)

20 April 1835, first performance, Arnold's English Opera House, Lyceum Theatre, London

23 April 1835, second performance

25 April 1835, third performance

The house, also known as the New Theatre Royal, under the management of Samuel Arnold, was running in tandem Barnett's opera The mountain sylph and the opera Cramond Brig on Scottish airs

For details of the work and sources, see:

Sadak and Kalasrade (worklist entry)

Letter, from Mary Russell Mitford (10 April 1835) to Henry Phillips, bass vocalist; referred to in L'Estrange (ed.), The life of Mary Russell Mitford . . . vol. 3, 24 (DIGITISED)

[A letter to Mr. Henry Phillips, dated April 10th, 1835, refers to Miss Mitford's opera of "Sadak and Kalascade," [sic] which had been accepted by Mr. Arnold for the Lyceum Theatre. It was produced on the 20th of April in this year.]

"ENGLISH OPERA-HOUSE", The Morning advertiser (21 April 1835)

Last night Mr. Arnold commenced the English Opera-house season with great spirit, presenting to his numerous holiday visitors three new compositions of considerable merit: the first was a "grand opera," from the practised pen of Miss Mitford, called Sadak and Kalasrade, or the Waters of Oblivion; the second farcetta called My Fellow Clerk; and the "original drama," entitled The Shadow on the Wall. With regard to the first of these, it may be observed that the accomplished lady who owns it has taken her materiel from one of the Tales of the Genii by (we believe) Sir C. Morrell, late British resident at Poonah. Without troubling ourselves or our readers much about the plot itmay be necessary to mention that Miss M. has not adhered strictly to the original story; but n'importe. Contrary to the usual arrangement of voices, the tyrant Caliph Amurath is represented by Wilson, while Phillips sustains the character of Sadak, the persecuted husband of the beautiful and virtuous Kalasrade. The Caliph becomes enamoured of Kalasrade, who refuses to listen to his guilty passion; he is exasperated in consequence, and sets fire to her dwelling. Sadak, who it appears has been absent, returns, and is condemned by the tyrant to procure the waters of oblivion, that may drink, and so forget the charms of Kalasrade, at great personal hazard, for the waters are only to be found in a deep, guarded by all manner of evil spirits. The oblivious draught is obtained, the tyrant quaffs, and finds too late that death and oblivion are synonymous. Sadak, of coarse, is then allowed to enjoy his wife undisturbed. The scenery is very splendid, especially so the pleasure-garden of Kalasrade; arcade in the gardens of Amurath; the enchanted island, volcano, mystic rock, and magic tree; and the locale of the waters of oblivion. The music (which ought to be the chief thing in all operas, as truly observed by acute critic) is composed by Mr. Packer, an elève of the Royal Academy. Taken whole, it is of mediocre class; but that has long been essential characteristic of the English school of music. Mr. Packer, however, possesses a good musical education, and evinced considerable taste and skill in several portions of the opera, especially so towards its close. Wilson plaved the tyrant very well, and gave the music much better. This gentleman has been rising in public esteem for several seasons past. He sang several of the morceaux last night with spirit, taste, and judgment alike creditable to himself, as to his able tutor Crevelli. H. Phillips has some good music set down to him, and he sang it admirably. Miss E. Romer, as Kalasrade, dressed and looked like an eastern bride, fresh as the dawn, and gave her music with taste and expression. The opera was given out for repetition by Phillips amidst great applause, although there were some ill-natured hisses mingled with it. After the fall of the curtain "God save the King" was sung in capital style by the whole vocal strength of the company, Miss F. Healey leading with the first verse.

My Fellow Clerk is lively dramatic sketch, and affords Mr. Wrench ample opportunity for the display of his extravagant humour. The Shadow on the Wall terminated at so late an hour, and possesses so much intrinsic merit as an original drama, that we must take another occasion to speak of it in detail. The house was exceedingly well attended.

"LYCEUM AND ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE", The Morning post (21 April 1835), 3

A crowded audience attended last night the opening of the season of the popular establishment devoted to the fostering and encouragement or native talent. During the recess the proprietor has put forth additional claims to public patronage, by extending the accommodation, already so liberally apportioned for comfort and convenience in this most elegant theatre. Thus the gloomy-looking boxes which were formerly in the rear of the balcony have been thrown into the dress circle, and the three private boxes on each side of the first circle have been added to it. The effect has been to relieve the heaviness or the former arrangement, and to add considerably to the pleasure of the visitors. The entertainments consisted or three new pieces, namely, a new opera in two acts, the libretto from the pen of Miss MITFORD, and the music composed by Mr. PACKER, of the Royal Academy, under the title of Sadak and Kalasrade, or the Waters of Oblivion; a new farcetta, called My Fellow Clerk; and a new and original drama, written by Mr. SERLE, entitled The Shadow on the Wall. There was much spirit on the part of Mr. ARNOLD in producing entire novelties for the first night, and we wish that we could conscientiously record the triumph which his exertions ought to have achieved. But whilst in the two last-mentioned dramas we can announce a deserved and decisive success our report rannot extend to the prominent attraction of the evening. A new opera from a British composer is indeed entitled at our hands to every indulgence, and to all the support which can be extended to it in our columns. That we have evinced on former occasions every disposition to promote the interests and encourage the prospects of native genuis will not be denied by the members of the profession; and, however painful it may be, we must now show cause against Mr. PACKER. There is one objection which we have to urge against this opera, which must be carefully eschewed by future English composers. It is true it may be urged that the defect which we are about to point out has for its origin and excuse the example of the modern Italian school; but the fault is of serious consequence to the general effect, and if persevered in must prove fatal to the reputation of the maestro. We mean the introduction of a bass voice in the leading character, "to the manifest injury," as Lord MOUNT EDGCUMBE has ably observed in his "Musical Reminiscences," "of melody, and total subversion of harmony, in which the lowest part is their peculiar province." The noble author whom we have just quoted, further observes in support of his position, that a bass ought to occupy the last place:-

"These new first singers are called by the novel appellation of basso cantate (which, by-the-bye, is a kind of apology, and an acknowledgment that they ought not to sing), and take the lead in operas with almost as much propriety as if the double bass were to do so in the orchestra, and play the part of the first fiddle. A bass voice is too unbending and deficient in sweetness for single songs, and fit only for those of inferior character, or of the buffo style. In duettos it does not coalesce well with a female voice, on account of the too great distance between them, and in fuller pieces the ear cannot be satisfied without some good intermediate voices to fill up the interval, and complete the harmony."

In the preceding observations few persons who heard Mr. Packer's production will be disposed to differ; but we must do this Gentleman the justice of stating that we do not believe he ought to be blamed for the course which he has pursued. The evil, we are afraid, has arisen in this instance from the selfish and narrow-minded teelings of certain singers, who, to gratify their own vanity, will nol hesitate to sacrifice composers and adapters who have industriously laboured to draw them out of their insignificance and bring them into public notice. Against such a disgraceful system, so blighting to genius, and so degrading to its despicable originators, we do most emphatically protest. We have witnessed in LODER's Nourjahad, replete as that opera is with beauties, the monotonous issue of the baritone being the leading singer, and in Sadak and Kalasrade we have now to record a similar result. At the production of AUBER's Lestocq we considered it to be our duty to expose the impediments thrown in the way of the adapter by the overweening conceit and capricious airs of some leading singers; and from the notice which had been taken or our remarks, as much by our contemporaries as by publications of a less ephemeral character, we had hoped not to have found it necessary to recur to the subject. But with all our personal predilections, and they are somewhat strong - and with all our juvenile recollections, and they are no less endearing - we cannot allow this tyrannical monopoly to be continued without a solemn warning to singers that they act not only with manifold injustice towards others but contrary to their own and most substantial interests. We tell them that they are but the mimics of "sweet sounds," and those sounds must emanate from the inventive as well as mechanical faculties of the composer. If the latter is to be cramped by the regulations imposed on him the mere imitators will find the love of music retrograde, for novelty is as essential to enjoyment as variety of style for due expression. The manifold defects of Sadak and Kalasrade we have as little disposition to examine as it would be tedious to mention them. The general character of the music is not dramatic, and is not applicable to the situations or the dramatic portion. Here and there may be found snatches of good writing, but the deficiency of melody was apparent throughout. Although the whole execution was extremely imperfect, the chorusses most disgraceful, and the leading performers in bad voice, it was impossible to come to any other conclusion than that the opera is an entire failure, and the demonstrations in corroboration or our opinion were unequivocal when Mr. H. Phillips attempted to announce it for repetition. We have said nothing of Miss Mitford's libretto, as it was intended as a vehicle for music which has not left a trace on our memory . . .

"LYCEUM AND ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE", The London courier and evening gazette (21 April 1835), 3

A crowded audience attended last nigbt the opening of the season of popular establishment devoted to the fostering and encouragement of native talent. During recess the proprietor has extended the accommodation, already so liberally apportioned for comfort and convenience in this most elegant theatre. The gloomy looking boxes which were formerly in the rear the balcony, have been thrown into the dress circle and three private boxes on each side of the first circle have been added to it. The effect has been to relieve the heaviness the former arrangement, and to add considerably to the pleasure of the visitors. The entertainments consisted of three new pieces, written and composed for this theatre. The first an opera, founded on the well known eastern tale of "Sadak and Kalasrade," written by Miss Mitford, and composed by Mr. Packer, of the Royal Academy of Music; an interlude, called My Fellow Clerk; and a drama, by Mr. Serle, with music by Mr. Thomson, called The Shadow on the Wall. From the first of these pieces much was expected, from the great beauty of the story on which it was founded, the reputation of its distinguished authoress, and the known talent of the young composer. It proved, however, a failure. The wild and romantic beauties of the Oriental fiction were effectually squeezed out of it in the process of dramatizing, and all that remained was caput mortuum of the most insipid kind. Such a drama was sufficient to weigh down music of a higher order than Mr. Packer's, though it gave indications of very considerable genius. The music is well written, and exhibits skill end judgment in the management of the instruments; but it is heavy and monotonous, and very deficient in the first of all qualities, melody. The piece went off very heavily; and, at the conclusion, so much disapprobation was expressed, that Mr. Phillips, who came forward to give it out for repetition, retired without doing so. No part of the failure of this piece can ascribed management or the performers. The scenery and decorations were splendid, the chorus efficient, and every effort was made by Miss Romer, Miss Somerville, Mr. Phillips, and Mr. Wilson to justice to their parts . . .

"THE THEATRES", The evening chronicle (21 April 1835), 3

. . . At the English Opera House there were three new pieces. The first an operatic version of the well-known Eastern tale of Sadak and Kalasrade, was failure, though it proceeded from the practised pen of Miss Mitford. The music, by a young composer of the name of Packer, was not happy; and the whole was very unfavourably received . . .

"ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE", The literary gazette, and journal of the belles lettres (25 April 1835), 269 [sic] (DIGITISED)

. . . Of this opera we cannot speak in terms of very high praise, for we found it monotonous, both as entertainment and music . . .

"ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE", Bell's new weekly messenger (26 April 1835), 7

Mr. ARNOLD, with his usual liberality and enterprise, commenced his season on Monday night with an opera, an interlude, and a melo-drama - all novelties. Sadak and Kalasrade (the opera) is founded on the well-known tale of the Waters of Oblivion, though there are some few alterations in the leading points of the plot, many of which, susceptible of the most beautiful touches, are wholly set aside. The story is told in few words: Sadak (PHILLIPS) is the husband of Kalaerade (Miss ROMER) and a General in the service of the Sultan (Mr. WILSON). The Sultan falling in love with Kalasrade, eventually get her into his power, and imprisons her. Sadak soon hears of his wife's misfortune, and determines to obtain her freedom. He enters the Sultan's presence while the latter is in the act of entreating the graciousness of Kalasrade, and demands his wife; but not even his remonstrances, threats, or supplications, nor the tears and prayers of the lovely bride, succeed in obtaining her liberty; the Sultan will grant it her but on one condition, which is, that Sadak shall seek the Stream of Oblivion, and return with goblet filled from its waters. Sadak does all this, and the Sultan, drinking from the goblet, dies, leaving the hero and heroine to enjoy the happy results of his decease. Of Miss MITFORD'S share in the merits and demerits of this opera, we shall not speak. Mr. Hazlitt said that Mr. Moore ought not to written Lalla Rookh for 5,000l. Miss MITFORD ought not to have written Sadak for 5,000l. Many thousands more than five should not have tempted the authoress of Rienzi to publish such an opera. The scenery is in many parts very beautiful; the "getting-up" is upon a scale of the greatest liberality and splendour.

- With regard to Mr. PACKER'S music, it is very clever and very promising, very learned, and we must add, with pain, very, very dull. There is not one effective piece in the whole opera, not one even attractive, with the exceeption of trio in the third act. We had, here and there, bits of WEBER (Huntsmans' Chorus), SPOHR (The Jessonda) and ROSSINI continually. The opera, as a piece, is without an object: there is no prevailing intention on the part of the composer that accompanies you throughout - whole airs, of those sung by PHILLIPS most particularly, are futile (we use the term in its abstract sense) they might just as well sung by Alexander the Great, Tam o'Shanter, or the Marquis of Londonderry - to each and all they would be equally suited. Throughout the whole opera there is a straining at fine things - at musical learning - it full of theoretic intricacies - in short, it is clever; of genius there is not the smallest spark; it holds out great promise of increased learning on the part the composer, but it gives no reason to suppose that he will ever write a Mountain Sylph, equal Mr. BISHOP'S glees, or be ever a partaker of the simplicity and purity of the ballads of Dr. ARNE, or the pathetic solemnities of the composers of the Elizabethan era. The singers did their best; they felt, we are convinced (as we did ourselves) an interest in the success of an opera by so young a native composer, produced at a period when English musical talent is greatly on the increase. PHILLIPS and WILSON sang the two heroes, of course, beautifully. A Mr. EDWARDS, from the Bath Theatre, made his first appearance. He has a voice not unlike WILSON'S, with the same sweetness and fullness, of a rather higher quality. The part he played was one of little prominence, however, but we trust an opportunily will be shortly given him to display his abilities more fully. Of Miss ROMER we must not speak. If we felt savage with Mr. Packer during the whole evening, it was for writing such music for such a heart and voice. Why must she, whom we had reserved to ourselves as the one singer on the stage whose sweet nature the music master had suffered to appear divested of all the astonishments of difficult science, whose frame we have seen shake like the leaf of a sensitive plant at the expression of ever so small an emotion - the fawn of the opera - why must she be selected to become the victim of the impossibility of notes an octave higher than Mrs. Billington could reach? why must she execute roulades, chromatics, and intentionless up and down's without end, that "mar her murmurings," and turn "the simplicity of Venus' dove" into the incongruous gimcrackism of a many-coloured mountebank. Skill is a fine thing, per se, but it is a very horrible one when it thus draws its sword against feeling and sentiment. Let it be with them, subserviently, but not without them, revelling in all its fatiguing wilfulnesses. Skill, without tenderness or emotion to poetize it, is mere "show off." But we shall have her in The Mountain Sylph soon. It is promised us . . ..

"ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE", Bell's life in London and sporting chronicle (26 April 1835), 1

This theatre opened on Monday night for the season, with three new pieces. The first is an opera, from the pen of Miss Mitford; the music is composed by a Mr. Packer, of the Royal Academy. There is nothing very striking in the language or in the music of this production. The reputation of Miss Mitford is fortunately too well secured by some of her former writings to render the diminution of it dependent upon the success or failure of this production. Sadak and Kalasrade, the new opera, is founded on the story of the same name in the Tales of the Genii. It is not a tale which can be told well in a dramatic form, and notwithstanding some tolerably good airs and some pretty poetry, it went off but heavily. The announcement for repetition was received with mixed disapprobation and applause - we should say the opposition was far from equivocal . . .

"THEATRICALS", Figaro in London (26 April 1835), 69-70 (DIGITISED)

The managers of amateur theatricals, who, like quacks and lawyers, live by the folly of mankind, have an excellent plan of making the degree of vanity, with which the stage-stricken apprentices are infected, the means of a proportionate profit to themselves. Thus, Hamlet is murdered for one guinea and a half, and Othello never smothers under two guineas; Roderigo and Cassio are seven shillings each, and Hotspur may storm and rage for half a guinea. This is the plan which Arnold should pursue with the young fidlers and fools, who come with "An Opera by an English composer," requesting its performance; and thus, and thus only, could he get paid for the trouble and expense of producing these melancholy abortions; for let him be certain that the public will never patronise such trash. Sadak and Kalasrade is a dreadfully dull affair, the mingled production of vanity and stupidity. Its author, Mr. Packer, is a pupil we believe, of the English Academy of Music - a meritorious institution, originally destined for the education of musicians - and an opera by a pupil of this Academy is about as absurd as "the Iliad, an Epic Poem, by a Westminster Boy," would appear if announced in the newspapers of the day. We do not blame Mr. Packer for composing this opera. We blame him for producing it - and we are seriously annoyed with Arnold for being instrumental in boring the public to his own loss with this, the mere raw material of an opera. Every composer has his own particular style - the royal sublimity of Handel, the graceful simplicity, and harmonious elegance of Haydn, the melodious richness and feeling expression of Mozart, the mysterious and picturesque harmony of Weber, the sparkling gaiety of Rossini, the military brilliancy of Auber, are known and marked as features on the face of music. Mr. Packer, likewise, had his style, the distinctive characteristics of which are squeaking and hooting; the fiddles and the females had a struggle which could squeak the loudest and the longest, while the bassoon, the serpent, the trombone, the big drum and the chorus of devils contested the palm in the deep, deep, bathos of bombastic bass. The laughing chorus in the last Act, had a double accompaniment from the pit and orchestra and the "Waters of Oblivion" must roll over the music of Sadak and Kalasrade before Mr. Packer's merits as a composer can again be put forward to punish the afflicted ears of the public. A few words regarding the faults of this opera may be productive of advantage to juvenile composers - there was a want of contrast, a deficiency of vigour, an absence of effect, and of light and shade. All the music was of a melancholy tinge, as if it had been written in low spirits, and when the Author, like his Opera, was out of tune; - one of the characters, at least, should have been lively - but, jam satis! If the opera be withdrawn, we will say no more of it - Poor Miss Mitford! . . .

(70) . . . We omitted to mention, that in the last act of "Sadak and Kalasrade," when the Nymph of the Fountain offered Sadak the Waters of Oblivion, Philips, with his fine sonorous voice, and in a most pompous recitative, thus sang:

"Man is born to remember, not to forget!"

An ingenious discovery, which can only be paralleled by the well-known poetical lines in Gustavus:-

"I can scarcely believe the intelligence you bring,
Tho' I hold in my hand the letter from the King!"

A contretemps in this Opera was very ludicrous. At one time a most inharmonious and noisy seraphine was accompanying a squeaking chorus of squalling girls; the audience were in doubt whether or not to hiss when Miss Romer unhappily asked, with the most innocent and unconscious look:

"Whence comes this ravishing music?"

A roar of laughter followed. The serpent's head and shoulders in the cave, and the ludicrous effect of its motions, can never be forgotten.

"ENGLISH OPERA HOUSE, The musical library: monthly supplement (May 1835), 48 (DIGITISED)

This remarkably pretty and convenient theatre opened for the season on Easter Monday, the 20th of April, with three new pieces. But before noticing these, we will briefly state what alterations have been made in the house during the winter . . . The first piece was an opera in two acts, Sadak and Kalasrade, written by Miss Mitford, and composed by Mr. Packer. The story is taken from the most popular of The Tales of the Genii, the title of which is retained. The following are the characters: - The Caliph, Mr. WILSON; Vizier, Mr. BLAND; Sadak, Mr. H. PHILLIPS; Kalasrade, Miss ROMER; Her Attendant, Miss SOMERVILLE.

The very interesting tale on which this is founded is so well known, that it is unnecessary to repeat it. Miss Mitford has only taken the main incidents of it, - the unhallowed love of the Caliph for the wife of his faithful general, Sadak, the latter being sent, at the peril of his life, to obtain a bottle of the waters of oblivion, and the death of the tyrant in consequence of taking a draught of these when in his possession. We cannot say that she has either managed these well, or availed herself of the improvements which ought to have suggested themselves during the rehearsals. Situations that would have been perceived by a practised dramatist have been neglected; and many points which might have been made in the dialogue have been lost. In the tale, the last scene is remarkably striking; in the opera, it is no less distinguished by an unaccountable flatness. Probably the strength of this piece is in that in which Miss Mitford excels, in its poetry; but, unfortunately, the books of the opera were not printed, and few singers take the trouble to pronounce a single syllable distinctly.

But whatever had been the merit of the drama, it could not have stood under the weight of the music. The composer, four or five years ago, published a scena, in which strong feeling, taste, and musical knowledge were equally conspicuous. From such a beginning we certainly expected a corresponding continuation. However, the musician's as well as the poet's muse is sometimes unwilling, and Mr. Packer's certainly was in any sort of humour rather than a favourable one when he sat down to this work. And here we must observe, that whoever had the inspection of his manuscript, - his score, - ought at once to have seen and declared its inefficiency. Such a proceeding would have been a proof of discernment, of kindness, and of a sense of what is due to the public.

Sadak and Kalasrade was heard through with exemplary patience, though a laugh or two at the expense of the piece was not to be resisted. Still it went to the end without interruption. But when Mr. Phillips appeared to announce a second performance, the roar of negatives was like that of a cataract. Some few claqueurs, who had, most indiscreetly, got an encore for the overture, again used their hands, though they could not be heard. The condemnation was unequivocal. But let not the young composer be discouraged: on the contrary, this should prove a useful lesson. Let him hereafter reflect well before he appeals to the public, and submit his next essay to a sensible friend, ere he suffers it to be put into a manager's hands . . .

"PROGRESS OF PUBLICATION", The morning advertiser (2 May 1835), 1

Sadak and Kalasrade, or The Waters of Oblivion, a Romantic Opera, in two Acts. By MARY RUSSELL MITFORD.

For the sake of Mr. Arnold, who has striven hard to raise the character of the English school of music, for the sake of Miss Mitford, who has written many clever works, and, lastly, for the sake of the Royal Academy Music, which has never done anything - but to which Mr. Packer, the composer of the above-named opera belongs - we wish we could speak in praise of Sadak and Kalasrade. On its first representation, some days ago, we candidly gave an opinion upon its musical pretensions, and we now have few words to offer regarding it as a literary production. On this head Miss Mitford herself appears to have some misgiving, for she says "it is not with English tragedies, whether written by myself or by betters, but with German and Italian operas that Sadak and Kalasrade can fairly be brought into comparison as a literary composition." Does our accomplished writer insinuate that the German and Italian opera is destitute of literary merit? that there is no beauty of composition, in short, poetry, to be found in the libretto of Medea, the Semiramide, the Zauberflote? But Miss M. states that she only designed her piece as a vehicle for music; we can only say that the music and the vehicle are worthy of each other.

"THEATRICALS", Figaro in London (2 May 1835), 76 (DIGITISED)

. . . "Sadak and Kalasrade" is being withdrawn, by degrees, from the bill of performance at the English Opera House, and the manager will find his advantage. By-the-bye, what has become of an opera composed by a daughter of Glossop of the Victoria theatre, and which was to have been produced there. It was said at the time to have exhibited genius of the highest order. At any rate it must be better than "Sadak and Kalasrade." Serle's "Shadow on the Wall," gains nightly on public favour; and Wrench's Tactic, in "My Fellow Clerk," is a genuine character . . .

For later Australian performances (1845-75) of the overture and/or terzetto from Sadak and Kalasrade, see: (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

[News], Morning Post (27 June 1835), 4

Mr. Packer, whose concert was announced for Wednesday morning, in proceeding to the Opera House was thrown out ot a cab and seriously hurt; inconsequence of which the performance did not take place, to the great disappointment of a number of persons who proceeded thither, unconscious of the accident which had befallen the beneficiaire.

Charles Sandys Packer

Thomas Oliphant, A brief account of the Madrigal Society: from its institution in 1741 up to the present period (London: Calkin and Budd, 1835) (DIGITISED)

[Joined as member] 1833 † C. S. Packer . . . The names of the Thirty-five members constituting the Society in the year 1834, are printed with a †

18 May 1836, marriage of Charles Sandys Packer and Eleanor Mary Teresa Grogan

Marriages solemnized in the parish of St. George the Martyr, Queen's Square, [Holborn], 1836; page 102

No. 301. Charles Sandys Packer, esquire of the district of All Souls Saint Marylebone . . . and Eleanor Mary Teresa Grogan, a spinster, of this parish . . . 18 May 1836

"READING ELECTION PETITION. THURSDAY, MARCH 15th", The Reading mercury (17 March 1838), 2

CHARLES PACKER, 855 on the register, for a house in Castle-street, and 181 on the poll, parish of St. Mary, was objected to by counsel for the sitting member. Mr. Frederick Alexander Packer deposed, he is son of the voter who is a music master; he did not to reside in London in the latter part of 1836; did so early in August, 1837, when he left Reading; he often went to London on business; he was in Reading two-thirds of June, 1837; he did not quit it until 4th August, 1837. Mr. Hill said he had an adverse witness and could not support his case - Good vote.

Prosecution and trial (Charles Sandys Packer, 1838-39)

"BOW STREET", The morning chronicle (28 December 1838), 4

CHARGE OF FORGERY. - Charles Sandys Packer, a music master, was placed at the bar, charged with forging and uttering four bills of exchange, one for £400, another for £380, a third for £800, and the fourth for £700, with intent to defraud Messrs. Stone, Martin, and Stone, bankers, Lombard-street.

The prisoner was apprehended on Friday, the 14th Inst., brought up for examination the following day, and remanded till Saturday last.

The witnesses necessary to prove the charge, however, could not then be brought forward, and the case was again remanded. This day, the principal witnesses being in attendance, the case was proceeded with.

Mr. Bush, solicitor for the Society of Bankers, formed for the prevention of frauds and forgeries, attended to prosecute, and Mr. Humphreys appeared for the prisoner.

Mr. George Stone, jun., one of the partners of the firm of Stone, Martin, and Stone, bankers, 68, Lombard-street, City, deposed that on the 17th of January last he received the letter produced from the prisoner, and he believes it to be in his handwriting. In consequence of some arrangements which were subsequently made, the prisoner opened an account at the banking-house on the 5th of March last. He paid in bills and money, and also got bills discounted on several occasions. From March up to the end of July last such bills were paid, with one exception, and the account was regular up to that time.

From July to the 12th of December the prisoner paid in other bills, and on the 13th of October he brought the two bills marked A and B, the one for £400, and the other for £380, to the bank. They are both drawn by himself upon, and purporting to be accepted by, Messrs. Stoddart and Son, Golden-quare, and are made payable at Messrs. Ransom and Company's banking-house.

Mr. BUSH: Was the bill for £400 discounted on the same day? - Witness: Yes, it was.

Mr. BUSH: Did you discount it at the prisoner's request? - Witness: Yes.

Mr. BUSH: Was the other bill also discounted by you at the prisoner's request? -Witness: Yes, it was discounted on the 5th of November. I believe the prisoner almost always applied to me about his account.

Mr. BUSH: On the 17th of November was this bill for 800, marked C, discounted by your house at the prisoner's request? - Witness: Yes, it was. The bill is drawn by the prisoner upon, and purporting to be accepted by, Messrs. Broadwood and Sons, Pulteney-street, Golden-square. The amount of it was placed to his credit.

Mr. BUSH: Do you know that any of those bills have been paid? - Witness: None of them have been paid, they are not yet due.

Mr. BUSH: How many partners are there in your house? - Witness : There are six altogether.

Francis William Fry: I am clerk to Messrs. Stone, Martin, and Stone, bankers, of Lombard-street. I remember the prisoner coming to the banking-bolise on the 12th of December instant. He delivered to me the bill for 700, marked D, now produced. It is drawn by him upon, and purporting to be accepted by, Messrs. Broadwood and sons.

Mr. BUSH: What did he say to you when he came in? - Witness: He handed me the bill, and asked if Mr. George Stone, jun., was in the way. I said I did not know, but I would see, and I went to ascertain; but when I came back the prisoner had left the house.

Mr. BUSH: Have you seen the prisoner again until to-day? -Witness: No, I have not.

Mr. BUSH: Did he leave the bill with you? - Witness: Yes, it has remained in the custody of the house, but it has not been placed to the prisoner's account. The following morning tnere was some conversation about it.

Daniel Giles Rose: I manage the business of Broadwood and Son, pianoforte-manufactuters, No. 33, Pulteney-street, Golen-square. There are three partners in the firm.

Mr. BUSH: Have you seen them write? - Wltness: Yes, often.

Mr. BUSH: Are you well acquainted with the hand-writing of all the partners? - Witness: Yes.

Mr. BUSH: Will you look at these two acceptances (marked C and D), and tell us if the handwriting is that of any of the partners? - Witness: It bears no resemblance to the handwriting of either of them, and I believe it is not their handwriting.

Mr. BUSH: Do you believe these bills to be forgeries? - Witness: I do; I have no doubt of it.

Mr. BUSH: Do you know the prisoner? - Witness: I do.

Mr. BUSH: Had he any right, or was he authorised or entitled to draw those bills on your firm? - Witness: No.

Mr. BUSH: If presented to you for acceptance, would they have been accepted? - Witness: They would not have been accepted with my sanction.

Mr. BUSH said that this was all the evidence he had at present. He was sorry Mr. Stoddard had not yet come to town, but he was willing either to postpone the case or let it remain as it was. After soane conversation, it was ultimately arranged that the prisoner should be remanded until Friday, the 4th of January next.

"POLICE", The Reading mercury (19 January 1839), 4

BOW-STREET. - On Tuesday, Charles Sandys Packer, the music teacher, who stands charged with forging and uttering four bills of exchange, amounting to 2,480l, with intent to defraud Messrs. Stone, Martin, and Co., the bankers, was brought before Sir F. Roe for final examination. The following evidence, in addition to that which was given at the previous examinations, was gone into. Mr. Henry Broadwood, jun., of the firm of Messrs. Broadwood and Co., piano-forte makers, and Mr. Matthew Stodart, of the firm of Messrs. Stodart and Co., piano-forte manufacturers, Golden-square, severally proved that the bills of exchange produced were not accepted by the witnesses or any of their partners. The prisoner, when called on for his defence, replied that he had nothing to say. The witnesses were then bound over to appear, and give evidence against him, at the next session of the Central Criminal Court, and he was fully committed to Newgate.

"POLICE. BOW-STREET", Bell's new weekly messenger (20 January 1839), 7

CHARGE OF FORGERY. - On Tuesday, Charles Sandys Packer, who is charged with forging and uttering four bills of exchange, one for 400l., another for 380l., a third for 700l., and a fourth for 800l., was brought up for final examination. - The prisoner, who is a music-master, and resided in Albany-street, Regent's-park, on the 5th of March last opened an account at the banking-house of Messrs. Stone, Lombard-street, and commenced to pay in bills and money, and to transact business with the bank. In October last he brought the two bills for 400l. and 380l. (marked A and B) to the bank, and got the amount placed to his credit. They were drawn by himself upon, and purporting to be accepted by, Messrs. Stoddart, Golden-square. The following month hw brought the bill for 8001. (marked C) to the bank, and got it discounted, and in December he appeared with the fourth bill for 700l. (marked D) which, however, was not discounted, but remained in the hands of the bankers until the prisoner's apprehension. The bills marked C and D were drawn by the prisoner upon, and purporting to be accepted by Messrs. Broadwood, Great Pulteney street, Golden square. - Mr. H. P. Broadwood stated that he was a partner of the firm of Broadwood and Son, Great Pulteney street. The two bills of exchange, marked C and D, were not accepted by any of the partners of the firm, and the prisoner had no authority to accept them for Broadwood and Son. Witness never saw them until he came to this office to be examined in the case. They never give bills of exchange. - Mr. M. Stoddart, of the firm of Stoddart and Son, Golden square, gave similar evidence in reference to the other two bills marked A and B. - Joseph Shackell, a Bow-street officer, deposed that he apprehended the prisoner at the Old Ship, Brighton, and on searching him found a bill for 490l., drawn by himself, but unaccepted, and a blank check upon Messrs. Stone, in his possession. When he was told that was apprehended on a charge of forgery, he said, "Oh, dear!" and appeared very much agitated. - The prisoner declined to state his defence in the mean time, and was fully committed Newgate for trial.

"CHARGE OF FORGERY", Bell's life in London and sporting chronicle (20 January 1839), 4

Charles Sandvs Packer, who is charged with forging and uttering four bills of exchange, one for £400, another for £3BO, a third for £700, and a fourth for £8OO, has been fully committed for trial. The prisoner was a distinguished member of the Royal Academy of Music, and possesses rare musical talents. He has plunged a young and beautiful wife into the deepest affliction by his reckless conduct.

Criminal registers, Middlesex, 1839; Series HO 26 and HO 27; National Archives UK (DIGITISED)

"CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT", The evening mail (8 February 1839), 3

Wednesday, Feb. 7. (Before Mr. Justice VAUGHAN and Mr. Justice WILLIAMS.) Charles Sandys Packer, described as a musician, and aged 29, was indicted for forging and uttering a bill of exchange for 700l., purporting to bear the acceptance of Messrs. Broadwood and Co., the pianoforte makers, with intent to defraud Messrs. Stone, Martin, and Stone, bankers. The prisoner was further indicted for forging and uttering other bills of exchange, amounting in the whole to 2,250l [sic]. Mr. Bodkin and Mr. Doane appeared for the prosecution, and Mr. C. Phillips for the defence. The prisoner had in the course of the morning pleaded guilty to the first indictment, and at being again placed at the bar before the judges, Mr. PHILLIPS said that the unfortunate young man for whom he appeared had, by pleading guilty, made the reparation in his power for the offence he had committed, and his punishment now rested with the Court. He was desirous, however, of calling several most respectable witneeses who would speak to the previous character of the prisoner. Mr. Broadwood, one of the prosecturs, Mr. Perry, a barrister, and Mr. Serjeant Talfourd, were then called, and gave the prisoner an excellent character for houeety. The latter said, that he had known the family of the prisoner, who were highly respectable persons, for many years, and he had known the prisoner himself from his infancy. He became more intimately acquainted with him on one occasion, when he composed the music of an opera written by Miss Mitford, and he considered him an upright honourable young man. Mr. Justice VAUGHAN said, that the character which the prisoner had received was quite satisfactory, but it would be necessary for him to look into the depositions in order to possess himself of the facts of the case before he pronounced the sentence of the Court. The prisoner waa then removed from the dock . . .

"POLICE: CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT", The musical world 153/59 (14 February 1839), 105 (DIGITISED)

CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT, Wednesday, February 10. (Before Mr. Justice Vaughan and Mr. Justice Williams.)

Charles Sandys Packer, described as a musician, and aged 29, was indicted for forging and uttering a bill of exchange for 700l., purporting to bear the acceptance of Messrs. Broadwood and Co., the pianoforte makers, with intent to defraud Messrs. Stone, Martin, and Stone, bankers. The prisoner was further indicted for forging and uttering other bills of exchange, amounting in the whole to 2,250l.

Mr. Bodkin and Mr. Doane appeared for the prosecution, and Mr. C. Phillips for the defence.

The prisoner had in the course of the morning pleaded guilty to the first indictment, and on being placed at the bar before the judges:

Mr. Phillips said that the unfortunate young man for whom he appeared had, by pleading guilty, made the only reparation in his power for the offence he had committed, and his punishment now rested with the Court. He was desirous, however, of calling several most respectable witnesses who would speak to the previous character of the prisoner.

Mr. Broadwood, one of the prosecutors, Mr. Perry, a barrister, and Mr. Serjeant Talfourd were then called, and gave the prisoner an excellent character for honesty. The latter said, that he had known the family of the prisoner, who were highly respectable persons, for many years, and he had known the prisoner from his infancy. He became more intimately acquainted with him on one occasion, when he composed the music of an opera written by Miss Mitford, and he considered him an upright, honourable young man.

Mr. Justice Vaughan said, that the character which the prisoner had received was quite satisfactory, but it would be necessary for him to look into the depositions, in order to possess himself of the facts of the case before he pronounced the sentence of the Court.

The prisoner was then removed from the dock.

[The age and previous reputation of the prisoner, the extreme respectability of the witnesses to character - one of them being a prosecutor - and the magnitude of the offence, combine to give a peculiar interest to this case, and the sentence of the Court will be looked for with some concern. - Ed. M. W.]

Central Criminal Court session papers . . . fourth session, held February 4, 1839 (London: George Hebert, 1839), 495 (DIGITISED) (DIGITISED)

Before Mr. Justice Vaughan.

551. CHARLES SANDYS PACKER was indicted for feloniously forging and uttering a bill of exchange for £800, at St. Marylebone, with intent to defraud George Stone and others. - Other Counts, stating his intention to be to defraud Henry Fowler Broadwood and others; to which he pleaded

GUILTY. Aged 29. - Transported for Life.

(Mr. Henry Fowler Broadwood, pianoforte-maker; James Martin, hosier and oufitter, Oxford-street; Erskine Perry, Esq., barrister at law; and Mr. Sergeant Talfourd, M.P., deposed to the prisoner's good character.)

"CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT", Bell's new weekly messenger (17 February 1839), 7

CONVICTION FOR FORGERY. Charles Sandys Packer was then brought up, and Mr. Justice Vaughan, pronounciug judgment, remarked that had been convicted on his own confession of forging bill of exchange for 800l, with intent to defraud Messrs. Stone, Martin, and Stone, bankers, Lombard-street. He had also been charged with uttering the said bill with intent to defraud other parties. His lordship was not aware, until he looked at the depositions, that there were any other charges against the prisoner; but having now read these carefully over, he found that he was also charged with forging bills of exchange for the sums of 700l, 400l, and 300l, making altogether between 2,000l, and 3,000l. The learned judge then sentenced the prisoner to be transported beyond the seas for the term of his natural life.

CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT, The charter (17 February 1839), 13

Forgery. Charles Sandys Packer was, on the same day, brought up to receive judgment. The learned judge told him that he had been convicted upon his own confession, of the offence of having forged a bill of exchange for 800l., with intent to defraud Messrs. Stone, Martin, and Stone, the bankers; and the indictment also charged him with feloniously uttering the same bill with a like intent. In his (prisoner's) case, the fact had not been overlooked that he had received a very high character from several most respectable persons, some of whom were personally known to the Court. But still character, however high, could not avail in a case of this description, and it was absolutely necessary, for the protection of the commercial interests of the country, that the full sentence of the law should be carried into effect; and that sentence was, that the prisoner be transported beyond the seas for the term of his natural life.

UK, Prison hulk registers and letter books, 1802-1849; date received 20 February 1829, Leviathan, Portsmouth (PRO UK, HO9/14, 52) (DIGITISED)

4506 / Charles Sandys packer / 29 / Forgery / Old Bailey / 4 Feby 1839 / Life / Mar. / [R. & W.] both / Musician / [Gaoler's report] Not known / [how disposed] NSW 15 Nov. 1839

England (1840s-60s)

[Advertisement], The Berkshire chronicle (14 March 1840), 3

MR. F. A. PACKER Begs leave to return his sincere thanks to the Inhabitants of Reading and its vicinity, for the very liberal patronage with which they have honoured him, and begs to say, he still gives instructions on the Harp, Pianoforte, and Singing.

Mr. P. has always on Sale a large Stock of the Instruments manufactured by Messrs. Towns and Packer in London, and flatters himself they will be found by those who favour them with a trial, in every respect unsurpassed by any other. Mr. F. A. Packer has constantly in his employ a competent Tuner, who will proceed to any part of the Country on very moderate terms, and to avoid the expense of sending to town, Mr. P. has made arrangements for having repairs executed at his Warehouse, in Castle-street, where may be also seen a large assortment of the most popular Music.

To prevent further disappointment, from the very short notice generally given for the attendance of Mr. Packer's Assistant at Quadrille Parties, Mr. Packer would feel extremely obliged by persons letting him know as early as possible. 128, Castle-street, Reading.

"THE ROYAL WET NURSE", Bell's new weekly messenger (6 December 1840), 1

Mrs. Packer, who has been appointed wet nurse to the Princess Royal, is a native of Edinburgh, where she was well known as Miss Augusta Gow. She is a daughter the late Nathaniel Gow, and grand-daughter of the celebrated Neil Gow ("Famous Neil"). Mrs. Packer studied music at the Royal Academy, London, with the view of becoming a public singer, which character she appeared several concerts. Mrs. Packer has, or at least had, a splendid figure, and no doubt possesses all the qualifications requisite for the proper performance the duties important office.

[Advertisement], The Essex standard (19 November 1841), 1

PAUL AGGIO AND SON, CARVERS & GILDERS, HIGH STREET, COLCHESTER . . . P. A. and SON beg also respectfully to announce that they are appointed Sole Agents in Colchester for the Sale of PIANO-FORTES manufactured by Towns and Packer, 20, Oxford Street and Hanway Street, London. Mr. Towns having been for nearly 20 years engaged in the manufactory of Messrs. Broadwood, these Instruments are manufactured by Messrs. Towns and Packer with all the recent Modern Improvements, on the same principles as Broadwood's, and cannot be surpassed in brilliancy and sweetness of tone, nor yet in durability; at the same time they are offered on such terms as must prove that they do not calculate upon the profit of individual instruments, but rather rely on the patronage and support of a discerning public for such increased demand as shall justify them in offering great advantages to purchasers of instruments of their manufacture. Particulars of Terms and Prices may be had of Mr. P. Aggio and Son, High Street, Colchester, who have had the honour to sell a great number of the instruments manufactured by Messrs. Towns and Packer, and which have given universal satisfaction. Piano-fortes Let on Hire as usual.

"PROMENADE CONCERTS", The Berkshire chronicle (1 June 1844), 2

During the present week our townsman, Mr. F. A. Packer, has given a series of morning and evening promenade concerts at the New Public Rooms, when the attendance was exceedingly respectable, although not so numerous as we could have wished. Various popular overtures, waltzes, quadrilles, &c., were admirably played the band, with excellent effect. Mr. Tull handsomely contributed his valuable aid, and performed on the flute with much brilliancy. Miss Turner, the young lady who sung at the former concerts, re-appeared, and was in excellent voice; the songs allotted this pleasing vocalist were executed with great ease and sweetness, manifesting a decided improvement her former efforts, and elicited frequent encores. Mr. Packer took a prominent part in the performances, and both played and sung with that taste, skill, and ability, for which he is distinguished. We are happy to hear that the list of subscribers to the series of promenade concerts intended to be given by Mr. Packer is sufficiently large to reimburse him for his spirited speculation and are only surprised that non subscribees to the series do not more extensively patronise this very agreeable amusement, although the weather has probably prevented many who would otherwise have been present.

[Advertisement], The Reading mercury (9 November 1850), 3

Mr. FREDERICK A. PACKER, (Pupil of Sig. Crevelli and Associate of the Royal Academy of Music) Begs to inform the Inhabitants of Reading and its vicinity that he CONTINUES TO GIVE INSTRUCTION in the HARP, PIANO FORTE, and ENGLISH and ITALIAN SINGING, his terms for which may be known at his residence. Mr. Packer considering a knowledge of the elements of THOROUGH BASS as indispensable to the Musical Student, will be happy to devote a portion of each lesson to that study, should it be required. Lime Tree Cottage, Bath Road, Reading.

1851 England census; Middlesex; St. Marylebone; All Souls, 26, 845

No. 115 / 21 Oxford Street / Thomas Towns, Head, 60 / Charles Packer, Partner, 65 / Amelia do., wife, 63

"Died", Herts guardian, agricultural journal, and general advertiser (5 August 1854), 4

On the 26th ult., at Coleshill, near Amersham, Bucks, Charles Packer, Esq., late of Oxford Street, London, aged 68.

"TRURO", The building news and engineering journal (9 January 1863), 32 (DIGITISED)

Several stained glass windows have been placed in the new mission church of Old Kea, Truro . . . Near to where the stone font is to be placed, there is a single-light window, erected to the memory of the late Mr. F. A. Packer, formerly organist of St. Mary's, Reading.

The window was installed in 1863 by the Rev'd Jeffreys W. Murray, curate of Old Kea and founder of the new mission church there; Murray had previously been a curate at Reading Minster, during Packer's tenure, and together they had rebuilt the organ there. The window has 3 lights, St. Cecilia playing an organ at top; Noah's ark at centre; and the inscription at bottom:

IN MEMORIAM F. A. PACKER R.M.A. [sic] Organist St. David's Cathedral, Tasmania - entered into his rest June 28th, 1862.

William W. Cazalet, The history of the Royal Academy of Music (London: T. Bosworth, 1865), 41, 47, 81, 106, 110, 138, 139, 140, 142, 143, 149, 150, 161, 163, 206, 223 (F. A. Packer), 226, 240, 267 (Mr. [? G.] Packer, Mr. F. Packer) (DIGITISED)

Documentation (Australia)

Charles Sandys Packer (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Sadak and Kalasrade (Packer) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Frederick Alexander Packer (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Frederick Augustus Packer (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Towns and Packer pianos (in Australia 1850-1870) (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

Norfolk Island (Charles Sandys Packer, 27 April 1840 to 29 August 1844)

Printed indenture, New South Wales, 1840, list of 200 make convicts by the ship Mangles [8], William Carr, master; Alexander Nesbitt, surgeon superintendent, arrived from England, 27th April 1840 (State Archives and Records NSW: NRS 12189; [X642A]; Microfiche: 742) (DIGITISED)

40-890 / Packer Charles Sandys / 30 / R & W / Protestant / Married / [born] Reading / Musician and composer / Forgery / Central Criminal Court / 4 February 1849 / Life / [former convictions] None / 5 [ft] 5 [in] / Fair ruddy [complexion] / Sandy to red [hair] / Dark hazel [eyes] / Eyebrows sandy and meeting, whiskers red, scar on forefinger of left hand.

Thomas Sharpe (Episcopalian chaplain), journal, Norfolk Island, 8 October 1840; MS B218, State Library of New South Wales (TRANSCRIPT)

October 8th 1840 . . . [Page 715] . . . A most extraordinary instance of the liberalism of the Superintendent has occurred here. The Government purchased a Seraphine, for this place, when Capt. Maconochie, was sent down here. A young man named Packer was appointed to play on the Instrument, which a little while ago, was sent to Longridge, - The man is a Protestant, the place of worship, is used alternately by the Protestants and Romanists [716] or Service. Hearing that he had been assisting at the Mass and absenting himself from the Church Service, I spoke to him on the subject wh and, stated to him my displeasure that he being a protestant, should assist in the Roman Catholic Worship. He mentioned my objections to the Superintendent, who said he would consider of it, and let him know. He than sent him instructions in writing, ordering him to attend both places alternately, - Thus a protestant is compelled, by this sapient reformer, to attend once a fortnight, the Popish Chapel, and assist in the Popish Service. And yet this encroachment on the liberty of conscience will be called liberal feeling. I have forbid him to play at our Service, if he does at theirs, the poor man, is Overseer at the Hospital, under an Assistant Surgeon [James Reid] who is a [Page 717] Roman Catholic, and whose appointment here, was made, it is generally understood, in order that he might teach the prisoners music. He might surely have performed himself, without forcing a protestant to assist in a worship so contrary to all his ideas of fine religion. To the Romanist party in this place, everything, is apparently wished to be made subservient . . .

[742] . . . December 10th [1840] When leaving a poor man, whom I visited at Longridge, and returning home today, I was much surprised to see the coffin on a cart for him made and sent up from the Settlement some hours before his death. The Hospital there appears to be in as undiscipline a state, as the body of the prisoners are. A prisoner overseer, a music master, seems to have the greater part of the work to do, which is done. The men appear dirty, and in one part of the Barrack room, in which the Hospital is situated, a number of the men sleep, whose noise and disturbance must greatly harass the poor sick men, and especially those who are near death. About fifteen of the new hands have died since they came here under the Social System . . .

December 18th [1840] . . . [748] . . . A great error I am sorry to say has been committed in building the new Church. It has been placed so near the Romish Chapel, that on account of the instruments of music they have been favoured with, a great annoyance is caused to the congregation of our Church by the noise, made by them, during Divine Service. The separation between the two buildings is so trifling, that, yesterday, it was with the greatest difficulty, I could preach to my people in the afternoon. It was like preaching in a room with a band of music, playing all the while in the verandah. When the Romish Service is finished, which in the afternoon occupies very little time, they in a most furious manner [749] began with their Clarinets so, that I suppose little of the sermon could be heard. This they call practice. The truth is, that they have had so many indulgencies from the Government, that their presumption now is almost unbearable. When will the Protestants see the guilt of their proceedings in giving encouragement to a system if idolatry, to a system which is attempting continually to crush the protestant faith . . .

[757] December 31st [1840] . . . The year 1840 is now nearly at a close. What important changes have occurred in this Island with respect to prison discipline since its commencement. I wish I could say that the change in the moral character of many of them has been in proportion also effected. But the most charitable mind, who is not blind to passing events, cannot fail to perceive that hard as many of these outcasts were before the Social System came among them with its thousand fairy promises, since then they have become much worse . . . [772] There is a great want of proper management here also, which is a prolific source of much disorder and confusion. The men have so many Masters who give so many different and contrary orders, that the poor fellows hardly know whom to obey. And this causes them perhaps to neglect many things belonging to their duty which would be cheerfully performed, were there some guiding hand, to direct the whole. The Camp at Longridge appears now to be under the management of the Second Assistant Surgeon. The Superintendent whose duty it has always been to muster the men & has only the charge of the labour, the rest is to be done by Assistant Surgeon. [773] In addition to this he has to teach the prisoners music. The Hospital of which he has the charge is situated at the Agricultural establishment, about a mile and a quarter from the Settlement. Instead of residing there he has been hitherto living on the Settlement. A dispenser, a music master also, appears to have the duty there principally to perform. He is however more concerned about his own comforts, apparently than that of the patients about him. Hence his time is chiefly spent, either in his own cottage, or taking recreation, with a number of the men. It is much to be regretted that so many abuses should prevail, and that so many [774] men should eat the bread of idleness . . .

[779] . . . Today a prisoner mentioned to me that he had been prevented from attending Church for about ten weeks, on account to work constantly for the two Assistant Surgeons here. The singers at Longridge have marks given to them. They sing in Church, yet these men are brought away from their Barracks for the [780] avowed purpose of singing glees & songs at Government House and stay all night away, and are plentifully regaled with spirits etc. Will this promote reformation among them. Amusement, not religion, appears to be the ground work of the wonder working system among the prisoners. The great aim appears to be to keep them in good humour, and little petted children they may be tolerably quiet for a few hours and then they become more peevish than ever. So it is with the men here. They can cheer and they can promise and that is all. When practice steps in, they are miserably deficient, and when temptation is held out, they soon fall . . .


"Norfolk Island", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (30 April 1842), 2 

We beg to direct the attention of our readers to an important letter (from a Correspondent) in this days' publication, which exposes in an able manner, the absurd, we might add, insane system of government, pursued by Captain Maconochie, at Norfolk Island, a system, which, instead of reclaiming the hardened criminal from his evil ways, has tended to foster vice in its most gross and revolting shape. We earnestly implore the attention of Sir George Gipps to the fearful extent to which crime has reached, the increasing depravity of the prisoners, and the enormous additional expense incurred by the Utopian crotchets of the music mad Captain, whose "soothing system" has proved a curse, instead of a blessing, to the country which he mis-governs.

Letter, Jane Franklin to Mrs. Simpkinson, 5 September 1842 (in G. Mackenness, Some private correspondence, 5/10 September 1842)

The Beauforts will hear of it all if they do not know of it already, but I would not have you be the first to communicate it. Its notoriety here precludes all possibility of its being kept a secret in England. It has already been plainly alluded to in one of our newspapers.

Sir John received yesterday some very interesting and confidential letters from Sir George Gipps - that wretched girl Mary Ann Maconochie was at that moment in his house - she was brought to Sydney from Norfolk Island by the first opportunity, attended by Sion, Mrs. Maconochie's most faithful servant and his, Sion's brother. Sir George and Lady Gipps with the most noble and generous kindness, for such it assuredly is, took her into Government House till the ship (Jubilee [recte Jupiter]) sailed which was to be in the first week of September. She was of course in the utmost seclusion, had not been seen by Sir George but was frequently visited by Lady Gipps - Sir George says the affair was one of notoriety at Norfolk Island - how it was first discovered . . . not exactly known - but all of a sudden the man who had been living in the house as tutor to the boys and music master to Mary Ann, was thrown into prison and she was shut up in her room - the man had been a musician and composed in England and was transported for forgery - he is of good address and handsome person - all these details, most of which I knew before were given to us by Sir George who at the close of his letter says Lady Gipps begs that what he has said on her authority be kept secret. I have omitted but little except the name of the villain [Charles Packer]. The girl is to be sent to Mrs. Oldham, Captain Maconochie's illegitimate sister whom you may recollect having seen and she lives at Cheltenham . . .

Letter from James Aquinas Reid (Norfolk Island) to Henry Curzon Allport (Kissing Point), 27 September 1842 [State Library of New South Wales, ML MS Ar26/3]

[1r] Norfolkisland, Septbr 27, 1842.

My dear friend,

[2v] . . . For two years, I worked like a galleyslave - harder than ever I worked in my life before - & never got one sixpence for it. I often plied Captain Maconochie with remembrances, & insisted at last rather peremptorily on a definite arrangement, the moreso, as I felt that to me principally was owning his hitherto success, & that without one, he could hardly proceed. Many transactions, to which I alone was privy, placed him, in a degree, in my power. He must have known from private sources, that the tide was [setting?] against him - & as he found enough to so to keep afloat himself, he determined to throw a troublesome monitor like myself overboard. When people are willing, it is easy to find a cause for quarrelling. The pretext of intrigue between his daughter [Mary Ann Maconochie] & me, was so shallow as it were ridiculous - the hand of heaven has visited his want of principle strikingly on the old man, in the disgrace of that same daughter with a prisoner of the crown [Charles Packer]. No explanation ever took place between us - the first insulting expression he made use of to me, was the last he had the power to do - I turned on my heel, & have never opened my lips or addressed him except on duty, since that time. He is too old a man & in too trying a position to become the object of my resentment, altho from his since [ ? ] conduct he deserves no forbearance - - I told you before, that the department is likely to be reduced, previously to its final breakage, transportation to having ceased . . .

[4r] . . .God bless you all! Adieu!

J. Aq. Reid.

Reid, who was an assistant surgeon on Norfolk Island, had earlier been music tutor to Alexander Maconochie's eldest daughter Mary; and Maconochie had also accused him (Reid) of having an illicit relationship with his daughter, probably either during 1841 or early 1842; Mary, whose younger sister was already married, was herself obviously of a marriagable age at the time (she was born c.1823). After Maconochie similary accused Charles Packer, Mary was sent home to England (see Jane Franklin's letter, above), Packer was thown into solitary confinement (see Packer's ticket-of-leave documentation below), and though Reid's professional relationship with Maconochie necessarily continued, their previously close personal relationship was never restored. On Reid, see: 

Van Diemen's Land (TAS) (Charles Sandys Packer, from 27 September 1844)

Packer, Charles, convict record, Van Diemen's Land (commenced 27 September 1844); Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:1423881; CON33/1/55 Page 14120,269,158,F,60 (DIGITISED)

14120 / Packer Charles Sandys / 1st [term] convict /
Tried C.C.Court 4th Feb'y 1839 Life
Public Arr. 27 September 1844
Protestant Can read and write
Transported for forgery
Stated his Offence Forgery £2000 Bills
of Excahnge deposited at my Bankers
Stone Martin & Co Lombard Street [?]

Trade Composer and Professor of Music /
Height 5 ft 4 3/4 in / Age 35 / Compl'x Ruddy /
Head large / Hair brown / . . .

Period of [?] Labor Twelve months
Station of Gang - Southport - 23/5/45 . . .

27 July 1847 T. L.
15. 10. 50 C. P. app'd
23 / 5 / 45 Mr. Russell, Collins St.
23 / 5 / 46 / T. W. Rowlands [died] 14 / 6 / 47
Algernon Montagu
Hobart Town
14. 11. 48 to apply for a C P intends
an appl'n for a C. P.


23 May 1845, Charles Packer assigned to William Wilkins Russell, Hobart Town

31 July, 24 September, and 16 October, 19 November 1845, Charles Packer's first documented public concert appearances in Russell's Hobart concerts

"SOIREE MUSICALE", The Courier (2 August 1845), 3 

"This is the ouly Concert I have attended in the colony" - such was the almost general exclamation during and after this entertainment on Thursday evening last. For ourselves we must echo the same words, and join in the general feeling of gratification that they are intended to convey. The greatest care and attention in both departments, vocal and instrumental, pervaded the whole performance. The vocal department embraced only four performers, Madame Gautrot, Mrs. Hill, Mr. Packer and Mr. Duly; but the selections were so chaste and pleasing, so well arranged, and withal so extremely well executed, that the ear as well as the mind were kept in one constant source of delight. And here it is our duty to notice the debut of Mr. Packer, of whom we were led to expect something of a high order, and which was amply verified. His songs throughout the evening were of the most pleasing description, not only as regards the feeling manner in which they were sung, but in the skill and judgment everywhere discernible. Of his instrumental performance (the pianoforte,) we may safely say that the public have not witnessed the like for many, many a day - his "I Puritani" was delightful, the whole audience at the conclusion of the piece welcoming him with three rounds of applause. Mr. Packer also played an extemporaneous piece on the pianoforte, which was also received in a similar manner. We had nearly forgotten to mention the trio, Sadak and Kalasrade, by Madame Gautrot, Mrs. Hill, and Mr. Packer; it was admirably sung, and met its due share of approbation. We have not further space at present to enlarge on the performances, but trust the success of his first attempt will induce Mr. Russell to repeat these soirée musicales.

ASSOCIATIONS: Madame Gautrot (vocalist); William Wilkins Russell (violinist, pianist); Abraham Philip Duly (clarinettist, bandmaster)

"MR. RUSSELL'S CHAMBER CONCERTS", The Courier (4 October 1845), 2 

We have hitherto omitted to notice the second of these delightful performances, which took place on Wednesday evening, the 24th of September. The instrumental portions, executed by professional men and amateurs of acknowledged talent, were, as might be expected, admirably sustained . . . Mr. Packer's ballads uere given in a style of simplicity, tenderness, and genuine English feeling that excited a response in every bosom. His clear and distinct enunciation imparted to his performances an additional charm. As a pianist, he undoubtedly claims a prominent place. We do not mean to assert that his style of execution is free from defects, or to admit that we have not heard fur superior vocalists; but, still, we consider him as an important and valuable addition to the musical talent of this colony.

"CHAMBER CONCERT", The Courier (18 October 1845), 2 

Mr. Russell's third concert came off on Thursday evening, before a numerous assemblage, including a fair proportion of the elite of the town. The instrumental parts were of a pleasing and well-selected description. The variations on the march, from "I Puritani," by Mr. Packer, the overture, "Sadak and Kalasrade," and the "Duo concertante," by Messrs. Russell and Packer, received particular attention. "My Boyhood's Home," sang by Packer was encored. Indisposition preventing Mr. Leffler from taking his part in a glee, "Madeline," by Mr. Packer, was substituted, and received with ita former favour. The clarinet solo was far from an unpopular hit. Other portions of the evening's performance met with due appreciation; but, taking it altogether, the amusement afforded was such as to render it amply deserving of a continuance of the public patronage.

ASSOCIATIONS: Edmund Leffler

"MR. RUSSELL'S CHAMBER CONCERTS", The Courier (22 November 1845), 2 

The Fourth of this series of pleasing entertainments was given on Wednesday evening. The attendance was encouraging, but the performances were less spirited and satisfactory than on former occasions. To this general remark, the portions assigned to Mr. Packer must form special exceptions. His brilliant execution on the piano, combined with delicacy of touch and distinctness of articulation, together with the feeling and tenderness with which his songs are invariably given, must ever afford pleasure and elicit applause. In the glees, the voices did not harmonise agreeably, and their introduction seemed rather to serve as a foil to Mr. Packer's more agreeable performances, than to answer any other purpose of interest or gratification to the audience. The instrumental "Finale" was lively and effective.


6 and 10 March 1846, Russell's concerts, Launceston

"MR. RUSSELL'S SOIREE", The Cornwall Chronicle (4 March 1846), 172 

This distinguished artiste has succeeded in making arrangements for a Concert on a respectable scale, to take place next Friday evening, in Mr. Whitehead's great room, at the "Cornwall." The company will be limited, and in all probability very select, as we are assured the Soiree is patronised by some of our most wealthy and respectable townsmen. The programme appears to be arranged with considerable taste, and if sustained as there is reason to believe, will prove one of the greatest treats of the season. Persons who know Mr. Russell, or his clever ally, Mr. Packer, of Hobart Town, either personally or by repute, will have no hesitation in recommending the performance in question, as one of much promise. Nor will the valuable aid of the military band be an unimportant part of Mr. Russell's judicious arrangements.

"MR. RUSSELL'S CONCERT", Launceston Examiner (7 March 1846), 4 

This concert last evening was a musical treat. The star of the night was a Mr. Packer, whose performances on the pianoforte are pronounced to be the most correct and refined in execution of any pianofortist in the colonies: his vocal performances were also highly commendable, and in several pieces he was deservedly encored. On Tuesday evening, another and final opportunity of enjoyment will be given to those who can appreciate really good music, as Mr. Russell advertises a concert for that evening, in our columns to-day.

"MR. RUSSELL'S CONCERTS", Launceston Advertiser (12 March 1846), 2 

The entertainment on Friday evening last was a musical treat of no ordinary kind. Some members of the 96th band attended, by the kind permission of Colonel Cumberland, and we are grati6ed to have the opportunity of referring to tbe very correct and delicate manner in which they gave Bellini's, "A te O Caro," a cavatina, from "Beatrice di Tenda," "Vive Enrico," and a piece arranged from the well known air of "I know a bank;" as well as to the flute solo of Mr. Delaney (one of their number), which was very neatly played. The whole affair, indeed, was managed most creditably; but the performances which formed the attraction of the evening were those of a Mr. Packer, a pianist of extraordinary qualifications. His pianoforte performances are the most correct and refined we ever had the gratification of hearing out of London; whilst his vocal music was indeed sweet discoursing to the ear. "Madeline," a M S. serenade, and Bellini's "As I view these scenes so charming," were very sweetly sung by him.

On Tuesday evening the members of the 96th band were absent; but Mr. Packer having consented to take a very great share in the evening's entertainment, the audience had nothing to regret. He was deservedly encored in the fairy song of "Green Leaves," and we are confident that the audience were alone restrained from asking a repetition of the simple, pathetic ballad of the "Sailor's Bride," by a consideration or the unceasing exertions of the vocalist throughout the evening. An extempore fantasia by Mr. Packer was a most perfect exhibition of his brilliant powers as a pianist. His execution, his fingering, his refined musical taste - all are perfect. This extemporaneous piece, occupying nearly half an hour in its execution, was a series of splendid variations on the well-known air, "The last rose of summer;" "There's nae luck about the house," being introduced most artistically in the finale. The airs were selected at the moment by one of the audience. It was a most delicious combination of science and good taste, such as no description of the pen can do justice to. A duet concertacte (violin and pianoforte), by Messrs. Russell and Packer, and a duet by Anderson and Packer, were highly creditable performances.

23 May 1846, Charles Packer assigned to Thomas Wood Rowlands, solicitor

27 July 1846, Russell's concert

[Advertisement], The Courier (25 July 1846), 3 

Music Hall, Collins-street.
MR. RUSSELL has the honour to announce that a Concert of Vocal and Instrumental Music will take place at the above room on MONDAY EVENING, the 27th instant.
Overture. - Arranged expressly for the occasion (Maritana) - Wallace.
Song. - "There is a flower that bloometh" (Maritana) - Wallace.
Concertante - (William Tell) - Rossini.
Ballad - In happy moments" (Maritana) - Wallace.
Song - "The Night" - Hirne.
Cavatina - "Scenes that are brightest" (Maritana) - Wallace.
Grand Fantasia, Pianoforte. Thalberg.
Overture - (Sadak and Kalasrade) - Packer.
Barcarolle - "The moon in all her beauty" - Marliani.
Song - "The Cossack's adieu" - Neukomm.
Fantasie Irlandaise, Pianoforte - Herz.
Song - "How sweet the chimes" - Himmel.
New Ballad - "The forbidden door" - Crouch . . .


14 June 1847, after death of Thomas Wood Rowlands (13 June 1847), Charles Packer reassigned to judge Algernon Montagu

(July-August 1846) 27 July 1847; ticket of leave recommended and granted

Van Diemen's Land, tickets of leave, 1847-48 (London, PRO, HO 10/60, 120)

Packer Chas. Sandys / Ldy Franklin 2 [from Norfolk Is.] / C.C.Court July 1839 / Life / Norfolk Island 4 yrs 5 mths VD Land 1 year 10 months / Cause of indulgence: Having suffered materially in his health from having undergone a protracted and illegal punishment when at Norfolk Island, viz. Nine months solitary confinement, to which he was not sentenced, but merely ordered by the Commandant, who was his accuser, without any public investigation and without the concurrence of a second magistrate. His general conduct at Norfolk Island is reported to have been highly correct, and he has behaved in an exemplary manner in this Colony. He has completed in all a servitude of nearly seven years and a half from the date of his convciction.

30 August 1847, concert, Mechanics' Institute, Launceston

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (28 August 1847), 1 

SECOND EVENING CONCERT, Under the Direction of the Managing Committee of the Mechanics' Institute. A PROMENADE CONCERT will be held in the Cornwall Hotel Assembly Rooms, on
MONDAY EVENING, 30th August, to commence at half-past seven o'clock.
Overture to Waverley- Berlioz - Military Band. Glee - "Come unto these yellow Sands" - Four Voices, Mr. Leffler at the Piano
Fantasia, Piano Forte - by Herz - Mr. Packer
Song, "The Sailor's Bride" - Purdey - Mr. Packer
Introduction, Zemire et Azor- Sphor - Military Band
Glee - Hark to the Indian Drum - Mr.Packer & others
Fantasia - Piano Forte - Mr. J. H. Anderson
Song, "The old Mariner"- Knight - Mr. Packer
Waltz, Les pas des Fleurs- Maretzck - Military Band
Quintette - from Beethoven- arranged for Flute, Cornet a Pitton, Clarionet and Bassoon - Mr. J. H. Anderson at the Piano Forte
Fairy Song - "Green Leaves" - Mr. Packer
Solo - Vocal
Railway Gallop - Gung'l - Military Band
Glee - "Red Cross Knight" - Three Voices
Fantasia, Piano Forte - Dohler - Mr. Packer
Finale - Waltz - Military Band
Tickets - two shillings and sispence each to non-subscribers;
children under 14 years of age, one shilling . . .

"MECHANICS' INSTITUTE", The Cornwall Chronicle (1 September 1847), 3 

Another Promenade Concert took place on Monday evening at the Cornwall Assembly Rooms, according to previous announcement . . . there must have been nearly 400 persons present . . . Mr. Packer's reputation was well-sustained by his brilliant style of execution on the piano forte on which he performed several favorite fantasias with much effect. His fairy song of "Green Leaves" was deservedly encored, and the glees in some of which Mr. Packer took part afforded much entertainment; by Messrs. Leffler, Anderson and the other professionals, the enconiums of the audience were quite deserved. Nor must we omit the excellent performances of the Band, who played several overtures, waltzes, &c., in their best style; the "Railway Gallop" was a remarkable composition . . .


"MUSICAL TREAT - THE EOLOPHON", Colonial Times (28 January 1848), 3 

We are given to understand that Samuel Moses, Esq., has most kindly placed at the disposal of Mr. Packer, on the occasion of his approaching concert, the Eolophon which the former gentleman brought from Paris. This magnificent instrument is constructed somewhat on the principle of the Seraphine, to which however it is infinitely superior, both as regards the certainty of the touch, and the exquisite variety of tones which a skilful performer can elicit from it. Every wind instrument can be imitated upon it with the utmost fidelity, and we believe we are correct in stating, that it is chiefly in supplying the deficiency of a wind instrument orchestra that it will be employed by the accomplished artist, who we hear is unremitting in his exertions to produce such a programme as will indeed be a treat to the musical world, and secure to himself that patronage and support to which in every respect he is so fully entitled.

ASSOCIATIONS: Samuel Moses (died 1873); on the eolophon, see "ORGAN BUILDING - THE EOLOPHON, ETC", Mechanics' magazine (5 August 1843), 99-101 (DIGITISED)

7 February 1848, Packer's first Hobart concert

[Advertisement], The Courier (5 February 1848), 1 

CHARLES S. PACKER, Member and Professor of Music in the Royal Academy of Music in London,
BEGS respectfully to announce to his Patrons and Pupils, that his
MONDAY, February 7th, will take place on that Evening, at the MUSIC HALL, Collins-street, on which occasion he hopes to be favoured with their kind support.
Overture - (Maritana) - Wallace
Song - "There is a flow'r that bloometh" - (Maritana) - Wallace
Trio - "O'er the far mountain" - (Sadak and Kalasrade) - Packer
Fantaisie Irlandaise Pianoforte - (Souvenirs de Voyages) - Herz
Song - "The Reconciliation" - Glover
Scena - "Bear witness of my joyous feeling" - (Alessandro Stradella) - Von Flotow
Irish Ballad - "The Fairy Hour" - Crouch
Fantaisie Dramatique - Pianoforte - Moscheles
Duetto - "Qual mare, qual terra" - (I Masnadieri) - Verdi
Overture - (Sadak and Kalasrade) - Packer
Aria - "Cento destarmi" - Arigotti
Duettino - "Follow fay, follow fairy" - Donizetti
Serenade - "Madeline" - MS.
Song - "The Star Spirit" - Nelson
Aria - "Joyous days of childhood" (Anna Bolena) - Donizetti
Fantasia Extempore - Pianoforte, introducing "Le Galop Fantastique" of Jules Schulhoff
Romance Française - "Ma Normandie" - Puget
Fairy Song - "Green Leaves".
Finale - "Viva Enrico" - Pucitta
Single tickets, 5s. each : family tickets, to admit five, One Guinea each; to be had of Messrs. Walch, Hawley and Co., Stationers ; at the Music Hall; Courier Office ; and of Mr. Packer, at his residence, Battery Point, where alone reserved seats can be obtained.

"MR. PACKER'S CONCERT", Colonial Times (8 February 1848), 3 

This was really a concert in the true meaning of the term, and such as we have never before witnessed in the colony; it was a glorious triumph of genius and talent. We cannot avoid offering our warmest congratulations to this talented artist upon the successful result of his exertions last evening. Want of time and space prevents a lengthened critique of the performances, but we cannot refrain from paying a just tribute of applause to Mr. Packer in his several capacities of composer, pianist, and vocalist. His "Overture to Sadak and Kalasrade," in which the assistance of the splendid Eolophon was most striking, is a highly effective composition; his pianoforte performances were most masterly, while his vocal efforts were indeed "a perfect concatenation of sweet sounds." All his songs were very beautiful, but we must particularize that sweet gem, "The hour of parting," by Donizetti; his " Madeline" and " Green leaves" were unanimously encored. His extemporaneous solo upon the Eolophon was beautiful; this instrument is a band of itself, and has, when well handled, a very powerful effect. The room was, we are happy to say, completely crowded, and by the most elite and influential of our citizens, all of whom evinced the most heartfelt satisfaction at the performances. We shall, in justice to Mr. Packer, advert more fully to this concert in our next.

"Concert", Hobarton Guardian, or, True Friend of Tasmania (9 February 1848), 2 

"CONCERT", The Courier (9 February 1848), 2 

"MR. PACKER'S CONCERT", Colonial Times (11 February 1848), 3 

Agreeable to the announcement in our last, we again advert to this delightful evening's entertainment, which we are happy to inform our readers was but the first of a proposed series of Concerts to be given at such intervals as will fill up that "hiatus" in intellectual amusement which at present so strikingly characterizes our social arrangements. We believe we are correct in stating that Mr. Packer is having the Music Hall decorated and fitted up in such a style as will most materially enhance both the gratification and the comfort of all who may visit it, and that it will be first opened to his Patrons and Friends on the occasion of the "Matinée Musicale," for which he has announced that gratuitous admission will be furnished to all who attended the performance on Monday last. We are likewise given to understand that the musical arrangements will be on such a scale as will combine instruction with amusement, and best tend to foster that purity of musical taste, without which we cannot expect to advance far in the cultivation of this charming art. We are quite sure that the matter could not be in more competent hands, for without flattery, we may say that such a combination of musical attainments in one individual is rarely to be met with, and most heartily do we wish him success in his undertaking.

13 and 20 March 1848, Packer's soirees

"MR. PACKER'S SOIREE", Colonial Times (14 March 1848), 3 

Mr. Packer gave a Soiree Complimentaire yesterday evening at the Music Hall, which, as the title implies, was gratuitous: it was well and most respectably attended, and, as before, Mr. Packer was the sole performer, with one exception, namely Bishop's glee of "When the wind blows," arranged as a trio. Mr. Packer announces a second Concert for Monday evening, whon we hope a greater variety will be introduced into the performances.

"CONCERT", The Courier (18 March 1848), 2 

. . . The interior decorations of the hall are now completed, and reflect great credit upon the genius of the artist, Mr. Duke. The side's and roof are tastefully divided by pillars and panels into compartments filled up with open landscape scenery. The hall will be brilliantly lighted with chandeliers and sconces, which will add to the effect of decorations and professional symbols tustelully disposed throughout the interior.

ASSOCIATIONS: William Charles Duke (b. c.1815)

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (17 March 1848), 2 

CHARLES S. PACKER, Member and Professor of the Royal Academy of Music,
BEGS respectfully to announce that a
will take place on Monday evening next, the 20th instant, when he hopes to be favoured with a continuance of that patronage and support which were so kindly accorded to him on the former occasion, and to merit which, his best exertions will not be wanting.
Overture -
Song - "There is a flower that bloometh" (Maritana) - Wallace.
Trio - "O'er the far mountain" (Sadak and Kalasrade) - Packer.
Grand Variations, Pianoforte - (by desire) - I Puritani - Herz.
Aria - "Cento destarad"- Arigotti.
Song - "The Rover's Flag" - Rodwell.
German Song - "The Standard Bearer" - Lindpainter.
Duetto - "Qual mare" (I Masnadieri) - Verdi.
Trio - "Lo, morn is breaking" - Cherubini.
Song- "Pestal" - Pestal.
Aria - "Bear witness" (Alessandro Stradella) - Von Flotow.
Duo Concertante - "Pianoforte and Violin" - Lemoine.
Duettino - "Follow fay, follow fairy" - Donizetti.
Fairy Song - "Green leaves" (by desire) - M. S.
Finale - "Viva Enrico" - Pucitta.
Single tickets, 5s. Family tickets, to admit five, £1 1s. each. To be had of Mr. Packer, at his residence, Battery Point, and at the Music Hall, between the hours of 12 and 5 o'clock daily.
Doors to be opened at half-past 6 o'clock, to commence precisely at 7 o'clock.
March 17, 1848.

"MR. PACKER'S CONCERT", Colonial Times (21 March 1848), 3 

This admirable entertainment was very genteely, although not numerously attended last evening, which could only be attributed to the inclemency of the weather, as the programme exhibited pieces of first-rate character. The opening overture to Zadak and Kalasrade, composed by Mr. Packer, and set as a trio for the piano and two violins, was performed with spirit: Mr. Packer appears to be a disciple of the present German school, and the overture is a favourable specimen of his talent as a composer, while, we need scarcely say, he is unrivalled in this colony as a pianist: here, too, his forte is power and effect, which were admirably evinced in the Grand Variations, by Herz, for the piano : Mr. Packer's touch is brilliant, unconstrained, and rapid, and his general playing shows at once ths practised artiste. The vocal part of the performance was sustained principally by Mr. Packer himself, and a young noviciate, Madame Callegri, who, made her debut last evening. Madame Callegri possesses a voice of considerable sweetness, and making every allowance for the timidity of a first appearance, which was very evident, of some volume; she and "There is a flower that bloometh" with taste and feeling, but the Italian Aria by Arigotti was too complex for a nervous debutante: we shall reserve any further opinion of Madame Callegri until we hear her again; in the meantime, with confidence, and, above all, practice, she will become a decided acquisition to the concert-room. We feel more assured of this opinion, from the increasing confidence which the Cantatrice exhibited in her latter songs. The performances, having commenced in good time, were concluded before a late hour; and we sincerely hope to have the pleasure, again and again, to listen to the "melodious strains" of Mr. Packer and his friends.

"CONCERT", The Courier (22 March 1848), 2 

Mr. Packer's second concert tooks place on Monday evening last, at the Music Hall, in Collins street, and was well attended. Upon the present occasion a Madame Carrigarri made her debut. It would he scarcely fair to give a definite opinion upon her voice or style of singing, judging from her first appearance, for she was evidently unnerved by the novelty of her position. If her first effort in the trio "O'er the far Mountain" therefore failed from this cause, she improved as she became less nervous; and the duettino, "Follow Fay, follow Fairy," was deserving of an encore. It is unnecessary to criticise Mr. Packer's performances; he played a pianoforte piece, by Hertz, in admirable style, and was deservedly applauded in his ballad-singing throughout.

"CONCERT", Hobarton Guardian, or, True Friend of Tasmania (25 March 1848), 2 

Mr. C. S. Packer's concert at the Music Hall, was, considering the unfavourable state of tbe weather, well attended. We were gratified to see so many of the most respectable of our citizens patronizing Mr. Packer, whose talents as a musician have, in the mother-country, gained him a niche amongst the first musical talent in Europe. His performance on Monday night, of some of his own splendid compositions, fully establishes his fame both as a composer and performer. He also sang most pleasantly, and was encored no less than three times. To particularise any part of his performance would be doing him injustice, for all was good. A debutanti, Madame Callagarri, who is we believe a pupil of Mr. Packer, made her appearance and was well received. When we consider the many disadvantages of a first appearance, we cannot withold our mead of praise to this lady; her voice is good, and only requires practice, with confidence, to develope its full powers. Her ear is particularly correct. We could not discover that she sang one note out of tune. In the trio - "O'er the Far Mountain," she displayed powers of no mean order, and in the air "Bear Witness" she gave every proof that she would brcome a favorite finger. Upon the whole she does her instructor great credit and we wish her every success in her musical career. Mr. Allen sang very pleasingly, and was well received. We must not omit Mr. Howson's performance on the violin. Every time we have the pleasure to hear this gentleman, we are delighted at the astonishing improvement he displays upon each new occasion. He has always been a favourite with the Hobartonians, but we never were more satisfied with his style and execution, than on the late occasion. Upon the whole the concert gave great satisfaction, both as to the pieces selected, and manner in which they were gone through. The finale "Viva Enrico," crowned the pleasing sensations of the audience, and they left the hall well pleased with the treat afforded them by Mr. Packer, and his assistants.

ASSOCIATIONS: Maria Callegari (vocalist); Henry Howson (violinist); Mr. Allen (vocalist)

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (28 April 1848), 2 

Madame Callegari; Mr. Duly; Mr. Allen; Charles S. Packer.
Violin - Mr. Howson.
Pianoforte - Charles S. Packer.
On this occasion will be presented some curious Madrigals composed during the 14th, 15th, and 16th Centuries, to give effect to which several Amateurs have kindly proffered their assistance.
May Chorus - "Hail all hail!" - Weber.
Pastoral Ballad - "May Day." - Packer.
Madrigal - "Now is the month of Maying" - Morley.
Fantasia - Pianoforte - Herz.
Scena - "Bear witness" (by desire) - Alessandro Stradella - Flotow.
Song - "Pestal" (by desire)
Song - "I will never" - Seven Maids of Munich - Rodwell.
Madrigal - "The Silver Swan" - Orlando Gibbons.
Quartette and Chorus - "Viva Enrico" - Henri Quatre - Pucitta.
Duetto - "Qual mare" - I masnadieri - Verdi.
Duo Concertante - Violin and Pianoforte - Packer.
Aria - "Joyous days of Childhood" - Anna Bolena - Donizetti.
Madrigal - "Comely Swain" - Playford.
Song - "The forbidden Door," (by desire) - Crouch.
Trio - "O'er the far Mountain" - Sadak & Kalasrade - Packer.
Finale Madrigal - "The Waits" - Jer. Saville.
Single Tickets, 5s. each, Family Tickets (to admit five), 21s. each, To be had at Messrs. Walch's, Hawley's, and Rolwegan's, Stationers ; at the Courier Office; and of Charles S. Packer, at the Music Hall, or his residence, Battery Point.
Doors open at half-past 6, to commence at 7 o'clock precisely.
April 25, 1848.

"THE CONCERTS", Colonial Times (2 May 1848), 3 

Mrs. Chester's concert on Friday evening, at the Mechanics' Institute, was very genteely, and indeed numerously attended . . . Mr. Packer's concert, which was given last evening at the Music Hall, was not so well attended as we expected: the performances, however went off very well, Mr. Packer exerting himself in the most admirable manner. Unquestionably he is the best pianist in the colony, and by no means an indifferent vocalist. The Madrigals were received with due applause, and the Duo Concertante, in tho second part, for violin (Howson) and pianoforte (Packer) was a splendid performance. The song, "The forbidden door," was encored, and justly so; and altogether the concert was conducted in a manner which leads us to hope that Mr. Packer will continue to repeat these interesting musical entertainments.

"CONCERTS", The Courier (3 May 1848), 2 

On Monday evening Mr. Packer gave a concert at the Music Hall, in Collins-street. The novelty upon the present occasion consisted in the introduction of some very quaint old musical madrigals, written and sung, in all probability, in days gone by, when one "William Shakespere," not altogether unknown to fame, lived and wrote for the edification of posterity. These madrigals were admirably sung, and the harmonious cadences, with the union of seven voices, had a charming effect. It reminded us of the estabishment of the "Madrigal Society" in England, with the view of diffusing a taste for pastoral music, in 1741, and the pleasure which might be derived from their cultivation in this colony. The madrigal is of ancient origin; they are of a peculiar composition; abound in a variety of points; and are singularised by extraordinary syncopations and strange closes. The points of the madrigal were first handled by Flemish composers, in the beginning of the sixteenth century; the Italians followed, as the names of Palestrina, Marenzio, Conversi, and Ferretti will testify. The earliest dates of madrigals in England are those of Morley in 1594 and Orlando Gibbons in 1599. In a few years after the latter date, Gibbons published an extensive collection. These could easily be obtained. Would it not be worth while to cultivate a taste for ancient as well as modern music? A fantasia on the piano, by Herz, was brilliantly played by Mr. Packer; and in the beautiful ballad of the "Forbidden Door," he was most deservedly encored.

"Concerts", Hobarton Guardian, or, True Friend of Tasmania (3 May 1848), 3 

29 May 1848, ? concert, Launceston

[Advertisement], The Cornwall Chronicle (20 May 1848), 1 

MR. PACKER BEGS leave to inform the inhabitants of Launceston, that on Monday the 29th instant, it is his intention to give a CONCERT OF VOCAL AND INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC, At the Cornwall Hotel. on which occasion he will be assisted by some or the first musical talent in the colony. Full particulars will appear in the next advertisement. May 18.

8 December 1848, ? concert, Hobart

[Advertisement], Hobarton Guardian, or, True Friend of Tasmania (6 December 1848), 1 

MUSIC HALL, COLLINS-STREET. MR. C. S. PACKER, Member and Professor of the Royal Academy of Music in London, begs respectfully to announce his intention of giving a Concert of Vocal and Instrumental Music at the above Room, on Monday evening, December 8. Full particulars will be duly announced. November 28, 1848.

"THE MONATGU DESPATCH", Launceston Examiner (16 December 1848), 2-3

(3) [Turnbull, Colonial Treasurer]: The Puisne Judge's explanation as to the transaction between the convict pass-holder "Packer" and himself reveals, as it appears to me, a case of collusive, or as he styles it, nominal hiring between that person and himself for the purpose of defeating the regulations of the government, with reference to the class of convicts to which "Packer" belonged.

"DESPATCH", Launceston Examiner (16 December 1848), 3-4

(4) . . . In one part of this document Mr. Montagu refers to an allusion made by Mr. Young to some bill transactions of his with a man of the name of Packer, a ticket-of-leave holder; these formed no part of the charge against Mr. Montagu, but he enters into an explanation of the transactions, and, with reference to his connection with this man, who was a passholder a few months ago, he states, that I was aware of the position in which he stood with regard to him; this is explained in the minutes to have been altogether a mis-statement . . .

"'TISER AND THE MONTAGU PAPERS", Hobarton Guardian, or, True Friend of Tasmania (16 December 1848), 2 

. . . We care not whether the individual whose conduct is under consideration be of one class or of another, we will be strictly just. It is therefore in accordance with these views and feelings, that we do not hesitate to designate the attack made upon MR. PACKER, in the 'Tiser of Tuesday, as one of the most dastardly and brutal that can be well imagined. MR. MONTAGU'S explanation of the Bill transaction, about which, there was so much official humbug is most satisfactory . . .

ASSOCIATIONS: Algernon Montagu; on 31 December 1847 Montagu had been removed from office as a judge by order of the lieutenant-governor and executive council; he sailed in the Rattler with his family on 29 January 1848 and never returned.

[Advertisement], Colonial Times (26 December 1848), 3 

MUSIC HALL, COLLINS-STREET. CHARLES S. PACKER, Member and Professor of the Royal Academy of Music in London, begs respectfully to announce his intention of giving a Concert of Vocal and Instrumental Music at the above Room on Monday Evening, January 8. Full particulars will be duly announced. December 26, 1848.


Passenger list, Shamrock, Launceston, TAS, 18 January 1851, to Melbourne; Tasmanian Names Index; NAME_INDEXES:592418; POL220/1/1 p313 (DIGITISED, page 313)

Charles Packer / free / . . . [arrived in TAS on ship] Lady Franklin . . .

"MUSIC", The Argus (22 January 1851), 2 

We hear most inflated accounts of the piano performance of a Mr. Packer, just arrived from Van Diemen's Land. It is Mr. Packer's intention to give a concert or two in Melbourne during his stay amongst us.

"SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE", The Argus (8 February 1851), 2 

CLEARED OUT. February 7 - Shamrock, steamer, 200 tons, Gilmore, commander, for Launceston. Passengers, cabin . . . Mr. Packer . . .


10 July 1852, arrival at Hobart of Frederick Alexander Packer and family

"SHIPPING NEWS", The Courier (14 July 1852), 2

10 - Arrived the barque Sylph, 844 tons, Thomson, from London 2nd March, with general cargo. Cabin Mr. F. A. Packer, wife, and eight children - four males and four females under 14.

Marriages in the district of Hobart, 1852; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:842929; RGD37/1/11 no 384 (DIGITISED)

[No]384 / 1591 / 21 August 1852 / St. George's Church / Charles Sandy Packer 35 [sic] / Mary Frances Moore 21 / [winesses] Helend Agnes Moore, James Freeman

Passenger list, Nautilus, Launceston, 1 January 1853, to Melbourne; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:592422; POL220/1/3 p6 (DIGITISED, page 3)

Charles Packer . . .


"OFFICIAL SALARIES. To the Editor", The Courier (3 June 1853), 2 

. . . I am now suddenly compelled to close, as I am distracted. My eldest daughter, a pupil of Packer's, is strumming upon that remnant of Barnacle gentility - our decayed piano - that everlasting "Ben Bolt" (would I was a "Bolter!"); my second, a "colonial youth," is pathetically invoking me to "carry her back to Ole Virginny" . . . I am, Sir, your obedient Servant, ZACHARIAH MOULDES.

5 November 1853, Charles Packer (43/44) departs Hobart for Sydney

"Shipping Intelligence", The Tasmanian Colonist (7 November 1853), 3 

November 5. - Brig Emma, Brown, for Sydney, with sundries. Cabin - A. Dawson, Esq., T. Perkins, Esq., Mrs. Hough and child, Messrs, E. Clark, T. Jones, McDougall, Mr. and Mrs. Packer, Mrs. Cobb, Mrs. White, Miss Hayes; and 4 steerage.

11 November 1853, Charles Packer (43/44) arrives in Sydney

"Sydney News", The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser (16 November 1853), 2 

11. - Emma, brig, 141 tons, Captain Brown, from Hobart Town the 5th Octoter. Passengers - . . . Mr. and Mrs Packer . . .

15 December 1853, Charles Packer (44), first Sydney concert

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (15 December 1853), 2

"CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (16 December 1853), 5 

Mr. C. S. Packer's concert at the Royal Hotel last evening deserved a better attendance than was gathered together. Thisgentleman, who has recently arrived among us from Van Diemen's Land, is an accomplished pianist and a tasteful composer. The style of his playing is not modern, but is distinguished by a quiet and finished brilliancy which we have not heard for a length of time. His voice is of sweet quality, and he evidently knows what singing should be, but is deficient in power. Miss Harris, Herr Strebinger, and Mr. John Howson assisted Mr. Packer, and acquitted themselves with their usual success. The gem of the evening was decidedly the trio "O'er the far Mountain," between Miss Harris, Mr. Packer, and Mr. Howson; and the grand duet for piano and violin, on the favourite air "Partant pour la Syrie;" which afforded both Mr. Packer and Mr. Strebinger opportunity to display a very high degree of efficiency and an exquisite appreciation of the lights and shades which are to often lost sight of by ordinary musicians. Mr. Packer is a decided acquisition to musical circles.

"MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENTS IN SYDNEY", The People's Advocate and New South Wales Vindicator (17 December 1853), 3 

. . . The last in order to notice, but the first in merit however, is the concert given on Thursday evening last by a new candidate for the patronage of the musical world, named Packer, from Hobart Town we believe, and a member of the Royal Academy of Music, in London. This gentleman comes forward in the three fold capacity of composer, singer, and pianist, and in each of these characters - but especially the last, that is to say as a performer on the piano forte - may bear a favorable comparison with any who have yet appeared in this colony. The concert given on Thursday evening was both in selection, arrangement, and execution, undoubtedly the best that has been heard in Sydney for many months past, and it is much to be regretted that it was not more liberally patronised, owing probably to its not having been sufficiently advertised, and still more to the fact of Mr Packer's professional reputation not having preceded him hither. Te scire nihil est, nisi te scire, id sciat alter. But this should not be a source of discouragement to Mr. Packer, for we have little, if any, doubt should he think fit to make another appeal to the taste and liberality of the lovers of music in Sydney, now his talents are beginning to be appreciated, he will, unless we be greatly mistaken, meet with a cordial and satisfactory response, and will speedily take his place in the foremost rank in his profession in this colony. We have left ourselves but little space to offer any remark upon the details of Thursday evening's concert. The compositions of Mr. Packer, as performed on this occasion, are of various degrees of merit, some evincing talent of high order; in his singing and performance on the piano, but especially the latter, he displayed a cultivated taste and feeling as well as command of the instrument unsurpassed by any one we have heard in this part of the world. He was most ably supported by the exertions of Herr Strebinger and by Miss Flora Harris, whose merits were acknowledged by repeated peremptory encores. Indeed, since the departure of Madame Flower, and Madame Carandini, this young lady is the only female vocalist in Sydney, whose singing is otherwise than "most tolerable and not to be endured," and even should these old favourites return, Miss Harris's fresh, polished, and annimated style need fear no comparison, with the vigorous but uncultivated displays of the latter, nor with the faded powers and departing glories of the former.

"MR. PACKER'S CONCERT", Empire (Sydney, NSW : 1850 - 1875), 17 December, p. 5. , viewed 24 Jan 2019,

"PUBLIC CONCERTS", Illustrated Sydney News (17 December, p. 3. , viewed 24 Jan 2019,

27 December 1853, Charles Packer and Strebinger concert, Maitland

"CONCERT", The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser (NSW : 1843 - 1893), 31 December, p. 2. , viewed 24 Jan 2019,


[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (7 October 1856), 8 

PUBLIC NOTICE - SYDNEY CHORAL SOCIETY. - Mr. Charles S. Packer is no longer in any way connected with the above society. By order of the Committee. THOMAS DRUITT, Hon. Sec.

"DEATH OF LEWIS HENRY LAVENU", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 August 1859), 5 

. . . It may not perhaps be deemed irrelevant to mention as a somewhat singular circumstance, that Mr. C. S. Packer, who three years ago followed to the tomb the remains of his own master in the orchestral branch of his studies at the Royal Academy of Music - the celebrated Bochsa - will, to-day perform the same sad duty to one who was one of his own earliest pupils in the same institution. The funeral of the deceased gentlemen is appointed to take place this afternoon at two o'clock . . .

"PRINCE OF WALES THEATRE . . . MR. PACKER", Bell's Life in Sydney and Sporting Reviewer (20 August 1859), 2 

We much regret to announce that Mr. Packer, who assumed the conductorship of the Operatic Company on the decease of the lamented Lavenu, was taken seriously indisposed during the reheasal at the Prince of Wales, yesterday morning. He was observed to fall suddenly in a fit, and the greatest alarm was excited. He was subsequently removed to his residence, where he remains in a very precarious state.

Donizetti's opera of Lucrezia Borgia, in three acts, produced under the direction of Mr Charles Packer (Sydney: Prince of Wales Theatre, 1859)

Deaths in the district of Hobart Town, 1862 [2 July 1862]; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:1224435; RGD35/1/6 no 3408 

[Number] 3408 / July 2nd / Frederick Alexander Packer, Died Davey St. (born in England) / Male / 48 / Professor of Music / Congestion of the Lungs / . . .

Charles Packer's trial for bigamy (1863; appeal 1864) and five-year prison sentence (21 December 1863 to 21 December 1868)

"CENTRAL POLICE COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (26 November 1863), 2 

WEDNESDAY [25 November] Before the Mayor and the Police Magistrate, with Messrs. Chapman, R. S. Ross, Cullen, and Asher . . .

Charles Sandys Packer, described as of Sydney, professor of music, was brought before the Court charged with bigamy. The Information of Mary Frances Packer, formerly Frances Moore, stated that on or about the 19th, May, 1836, in that part of the United Kingdom called England, as she is informed and believes, defendant married one Eleanor Mary Terese Grogan, spinster, and that afterwards, to wit on the 21st August, 1852 at St. George's Church, Hobarton, he feloniously and unlawfully did take her, the complainant, to wife, his former wife being then alive.

Mr. W Roberts conducted the prosecution on the part of the complainant, and Mr. Windeyer, with Mr. Hillyard, on behalf if the first wife. Mr. Powell, instructed by Mr. R. B. Smith had charge of the defence.

Mary Frances Packer deposed that she assumed that name on the 21st August, 1852 when she was married to defendant, in St George's Church, Hobarton: her maiden name is Mary Frances Moore, she afterwards resided with defendant nine years, and had five children by him;

about six years ago, in consequence of defendant being discharged from a choral society in Sydney, she spoke to him about her name being mixed up in a matter of seduction, and some people having stated that she was not married to him, he wrote, at her request, to the clergyman for a certificate of marriage, and recieved the document produced (a certificate of marriage between Charles Sandys Packer and Mary Frances Moore, in the presence of Helen Agnes Moore and James Freeman, by Henry Phibbs Fry, D.D., rector of St. George's, Hobarton), with a letter (produced) from Dr. Fry she and defendant lived together as man and wife until February last year - about fifteen months - at Hobarton, and the rest of the time in Sydney, left him in consequence of his having taken a girl to live with him, about a fortnight after the marriage, in Hobarton, in consequence of a report, she asked him if he had been married before, and he said that he had not, but had lived with a woman named Grogan at home, a woman named Cranston told her, and afterwards, in defendant's presence, repeated that defendant was married at home;

she went with defendant, at her mother's request, in September, 1852, to St. Joseph's Church in Hobarton to be married after the Roman Catholic form, when the woman Cranston presented herself and forbade the marriage, on the ground that Packer had a wife at home, and the ceremony was not proceeded with;

after leaving the church, defendant said that the Vicar-General would see his brother, Frederick Packer, for an explanation, and that he had lived with the woman alluded to;

shortly after arrival in Sydney, had another conversation on the same subject with defendant, told him that a gentleman named Bugle had left a request that he (Mr. Packer) would call upon him on the subject of his wife; defendant said that Mr. Bugle referred to the woman of whom he had before told her that he lived with her at home;

on the arrival of the present Governor, Sir John Young, she had a conversation with defendant about his losses in consequence of his Excellency's antipathy to him for marrying a second time, when defendant said that it was because Sir John Young believed that his real wife was residing at Government House, and she advised him to bring an action against the Governor for slander; he said that he had consulted Sir William Manning, who told him that she (witness) was his lawful wife, and that he could bring an action, he said that his first was a formal but not a legal marriage, in a Portuguese Chapel in London; she was satisfied with the statement, and let the matter drop.

William Lee Bugle, foreman of the Gas Light Company's works, deposed that before he came to this colony, eleven or twelve years ago, he resided with Sir John and Lady Young in the North of Ireland; in 1847, was introduced to a Mrs. Packer, who was acting as lady's maid to Lady Young; after the arrival of Sir John Young in Sydney saw at Government House the same person who had been introduced to him as Mrs. Packer;

she is now alive, had a conversation in the year 1853 with defendant about his wife, the Mrs. Packer referred to, he neither admitted nor denied the marriage; wrote about it, and in reply received a copy certificate of marriage; subsequently met and told defendant, who then said that at the time and place mentioned he was married to the lady; but that, not having heard from her for seven years, he believed that the law would protect him; saw him a few days before the Governor arrived here, and told him that his wife was coming with the Governor; he said "lt's very annoying, after a lapse of so many years, that Eleanor should come to annoy me;" produced a Certificate of Marriage to him by Mrs. Packer since her arrival here.

The respective counsels addressed his worship (Mr. R. S. Ross) and defendant was committed to take his trial at the Central Criminal Court. Bail allowed.

"POLICE", Bell's Life in Sydney and Sporting Chronicle (28 November 1863), 3 


CHARLES SANDYS PACKER, Professor of Music, was charged for that he did, on the 21st day of August, 1852, at St. George's Church, Hobart Town, marry one Mary Frances Moore, Eleanor Mary Teresa Packer, formerly Eleanor Mary Teresa Grogan, his first wife, being then alive. Mr. Roberts appeared on behalf of the prosecutrix; Mr. Windeyer (instructed by Mr. Bilyard) on behalf of the first Mrs. Packer; and Mr. Powell (instructed by Mr. R. B. Smith, attorney for the defence) appeared for the defendant. The case was heard before Mr. E. Scott Ross.

Mary Frances Packer states on oath: I assumed that name when I married - on the 21st August, 1852, the defendant now before the Court. I resided with defendant about nine years after that marriage, and had five children by him. My maiden name was Mary Frances Moore. I was married to defendant at St. George's Church, Hobart Town. The certificate and letter produced came from Dr. Fry the clergyman, who married us. I was then living in Woolloomooloo. The certificate produced is that of my marriage, and is correct. Mr. Packer wrote to Doctor Fry about the certificate six years ago, in consequence of reports detrimental to my character. I spoke to the defendant about my name being mixed up with his in some case of seduction, and moreover, told him that people said I was not married to him. I asked him to write to Dr. Fry for the certificate, and he said he would. He afterwards told me he had received a reply from Dr. Fry with a copy of the certificate, which he handed to me. (Letter read from Dr. Fry fo Mr. Packer).

- I have not lived with defendant for the last two years. Up to that time we lived together as man and wife. I lived with him in Hobart Town about fifteon months. We then came to Sydney. I left him in consequence of his having taken a girl to live with him. I referred in my information to the fact of defendant's former marriage with Eleanor Mary Theresa Grogan. I have had conversation with defendant about the latter at Hobart Town after we were married. It was at my fathor's house about a fortnight after our marriage, and was in consequence of a report. I asked him if he had been married before - he said no, but had lived with a woman nnmed Grogan in England. A woman of the name of Cranston, whom the defendant kept at Hobart Town, and whom he admitted to me that he had kept, made a statement, and it was in consequence of what she said that I spoke to my husband.

It was in my presence and defendant's that the woman spoke - she said she had letters or papers in her possession which would prove that Mr. Packer was married before. Defendant said nothing in reply in her presence, but when she left, he told me her allusions were in reference to the woman he before told me he had lived with. I have often conversed with defendant on this subject. At first I was married in the Church of Encland, and my friends, for religions reasons, wished me to be married again according to the Roman Catholic form. I accordingly went with defendant for this purpose to the Roman Catholic Church of St Josoph's in Hobart Town. This was on the 2nd September, 1852. When in the church on this occasion, the woman Cranston came forward and forbade the banns, because, as she said, she had papers to prove Mr. Packer's previous marriage in England. In consequence of this the second marriage was not solemnized. Defendant made no explanation to me at that time, but said something to my father and the Vicar-General which I did not hear. The same evening, defendant told me the Vicar-Genoral would meet his brother Mr. Frederick Packer for an explanation. He made no further explanation to me at that time, but afterwards told me he had explained to his brother that he had lived with Eleanor Grogan.

The next time we had conversation on this matter was shortly after my arrival in Sydney, and in consequence of something I had heard - this was in November, 1853. I told the defendant that a gentleman of the name of Bugle had called at my residence and told my sister that Mr. Packer had a wife in England, and had requested defendant to call at his house to speak to him on the subject, which I believe he did. Defendant again told me that it was the woman he had lived with whom Mr. Bugle alluded to, as he had before told me in Hobart Town. That was all he said at that time. On the arrival of the present Governor, Sir John Young, I had another conversation with defendant about his professional losses in consequence of the Governor's antipathy to him on account of his second marriage. The defendant then told me he thought it was because Sir J. Young believed his former wife was alive, and then residing at Government House. I advised the defendant to bring an action against the Governor for slander; he replied that he had taken advice on the subject from Sir William Manning, and that that gentleman had told him I was his wife, and that he could bring such an action. I then let the matter rest, believing myself to be defendant's lawful wife. He said he would publish an account of the whole affair to show that I was his wife, and to clear his own character. On this occasion the defondant told me that his first marriage was only a formal, and not a legal one, and that Eleanor Grogan herself understood it to be so, and that he had gone through the form of marriage in a Portuguese Chapel with that lady;

Cross-examined by Mr Powell: I think I left Mr. Packer on the 3rd of last February 12 months. I think Sir John Young arrived 12 months before that. I first heard about the other wife's being in Sydney about one month after Sir John Young's arrival. I made an offer to Mr. Packer to take no steps, in this matter, if he would give up the girl spoken of as living with him. I swear positively I never had a conversation with defendant about her. I was living at Manly Beach when the defendant came from the Feegees; he came and saw me at Manly Beach, and I told him if he behaved himself for twelve months we might make up matters and I would live with him. I believed at that time the girl had left the colony. I had no conversation at that time about the girl with the defendant.

I was married on the 21st August at St. George's. On the following Sunday night week I saw Cranston. I think it was on the 2nd of September that we went to St. Joseph's. Cranston interrupted the marriage about to take place. I advised Mr. Packor not to publish the pamphlet. I always lived happily with defendant, until I heard about the girl. A few days before I was married he told my mother that a report had got abroad in Hobart Town that he was married in England, and said he had only resided with the woman in the Isle of Wight and London, and had introduced her as Mrs. Packer to his relatives. I was married to Mr. Packer without my parents' consent. I was not told, nor did I know, when I married Mr. Packer, how long he had been from England. I only saw him some half a dozen times before our marriage. I have no understanding with any one respecting marriage in the event of defendant being convicted. Alter Mr. Packer left the Feegees, I got a judge's order. Defendant left no money with me when he went away.

William Lee Bugle on oath states: I reside in Cumberland Place. I am foreman of the Australian Gas Light Company's Works. I am a married man, and have a family. I have resided in this colony about 12 years. Previous to my coming here I was residing with Sir John Young in the North of Ireland. In 1847 I was introduced to a person who was neting as lady's maid to Lady Young under the name of Mrs. Packer. I knew the defendant about twelve months after I came to the colony in 1852. The governor, Sir John Young, came here, I believe, in March, 1861. I saw him after he arrived here, and I also saw the same person who was formerly introduced to me as Mrs Packer, at Government House, Sydney. I believe she is still alive. I do not know that person by any other name than Mrs. Packer. About 12 months after I arrived here I had some conversation with defendant about this person. I called at his residence in Woolloomooloo, but be was out, I saw a lady on that occasion. Defendant afterwards came to my place of business and introduced himself to me as Mr. Packer, saying, "I understand you called at my residence." I told him I knew his wife - my reference being to the lady I had met in Ireland. Defendant neither admitted nor denied the marriage. In consequence of what defendant said I wrote home. In reply I received a copy of a certificate of marriage. After it came to hand I told defendant that I had received it and said to him, "Packer, you have got into a mess I am afraid;" he said "what for?" I said "I have received from a Clergyman of the Church of England a copy of the certificate of your marriage." I told him the month and year named in the certificate, and asked him to tell me candidly if it was correct. He said "It's quite oorrect. I have been married to the lady in question on the date mentioned." I then said "Don't you think you have run a great risk in marrying again, and your wife living." He replied "not at all; I did not hear from my wife for seven years and I believe the law will protect me." He laid stress on the words "seven years." He did not say on this occasion that his wife was dead.

At the first interview I had with him he spoke feelingly of his wife and said he had heard she was married. He made a different statement at the second interview than at the first. He then admitted that he was married at Hobart Town. I have had several conversations with him about the marriage in Ireland [sic]; he never told me he had heard Mrs. Packer was dead. It was only once he told me he had heard his wife was married and that she ran away with some person in Italy.

I saw defendant a few days before the Governor arrived. I called at the defendant's house early in the morning and asked him "if the coast was clear" alluding to Mrs. Packer the prosecutrix; he told me she was in the country and I said "I'm afraid, old fellow, you're pulled up at last, for your wife is coming here with the Governor - what are you going to do?" he said "it's very annoying, after a lapse of so many years that Eleanor should come to annoy me now" he also said "here I am this woman (meaning the prosecutrix) is the mother of my children. I love them and her too; she's proved an excellent wife to me." He added in reply to some other question I put to him, that she had received a liberal education and her parents were respectable. I asked him to call on me about the matter at my own residence, which he did after the Govornor had arrived. I told him I had seen his wife. He said he was very sorry he had subjected her to the annoyance, and was very sorry she had come, and referred again to the "seven years." I produce a certificate of marriage, it is the original certificate and was given to me by Mrs. Packer. I have mislaid the copy of the certificate which was sent me from Ireland and have not been able to find it. That copy was not like the one I now produce, there was no printing, it was all in writing, but the contents were the same. I received a letter from Mrs. Packer. It is signed by the defendant. I know his handwriting. I gave it to the prosecutrix. I see the letter produced, dated l6th Nov., 1839. It is signed by Mr. Packer. I am sure it is Mr. Packer's handwriting. I can swear it is his signature. This letter is addressed to Mrs. Holloway. [Letter produced and read.] I received this letter from Mrs. Packer at Government House. I do not know Mrs. Holloway. Defendant told me that she was his sister. It was some day this week that he told me so. Defendant did not tell me where any of his relatives resided in England. Defendant in some of his conversations with me spoke of his former wife as Eleanor.

Cross-examined by Mr. Powell: I was living with Sir John Young about five years, acting as superintendant to his estate. Mrs. Packer was living in Sir J. Young's family in 1841; she went by the name of Mrs. Eleanor Packer. I first became acquainted with defendant in Nov., 1853. I first had conversation with him in 1853. We were on friendly terms. I never visited him at his house. I have not been subpoenaed. The words I have made use of in the conversations in this case I have had with Mr. Packer were, to the best of my belief, the substance, if not the exact words, of thoso conversations. At our first interview he said he had heard his wife was dead. He told me when I told him that I had a copy of the certificate of his marriage (I think this was in 1854) that he had not heard from her for seven years before his second marriage took place. Lately he has said eleven years. He told me he had not heard from her since 1844, when he received a packet of letters, and one was from his wife. He said that since 1844 to 1853 he had not heard from her. This was within the last month. He has never told me that he has heard from her since 1844.

By Mr. Roberts: He did not say from whom he had heard of his wife's death. [Bugle] Only on the one occasion of our interviews did he tell me that he had heard that Eleanor was dead.

Mary Francos Packer recalled on oath states: I look at the lotter dated 16th Nov., 1839; it is in Mr. Packer's hand-writing. It is addressed - "Mrs Holloway." Defendant has spoken of her to me as his favorite sister. He said she was residing either in London or Berkshire. Defendant told me he had other relations residing in London - he said he had two sisters in London. Frequently defendant had alluded to them. He did not say he was corresponding with them. Defendant never told me at any time that he had heard of the death of his first wife. He never mentioned her to me as his wife. He told me about six years ago that he had been applied to on behalf of Miss Grogan, through Mrs. Plunkett, I believe. He said that he had sent her 10 guineas per quarter. I asked him why he did so. He replied that it would be such a difficult matter at such a distance to disprove facts in which his family believed. He also mentioned Mr. Dillon, the solicitor's name, through whom he had sent the money. At the time I married the defendant he told me that he was not married. He always denied being married. He never told me that he had heard through his sisters of the death of Miss Grogan, or his first wife. I produce the judge's order I spoke of yesterday. (Judge's order read.) Defendant knew I had this order. I produce this letter sent to me by defendant. My father died on the 5th August this year. I have been living with my sister at Wagga Wagga since March last.

The evidence being closed, an animated and somewhat warm discussion ensued betwoon Messrs. Powell and Windeyer on points of law; the former in defence, urging that there was no case to go before a jury, and insisting on a discharge. He deprecated the conduct of the witness Bugle, and the absence of the first wife, denying that there was any evidence to prove the prior marriage, and quoting legal precedents for an acquittal. Mr Windeyer contended on the other hand that the magistrate had no alternative but to commit the prisoner. His Worship said that the case was one of no ordinary difficulty, but that with every wish to do justice to the accused, after a calm and dispassionate consideration of the opposing arguments of counsel for and against, he had come to the conclusion that he had no right to take the responsibility of summary jurisdiction upon himself, and felt himself bound to send the the case before a jury. Prisoner was accordingly committed to stand his trial at the next criminal sessions. Bail allowed, himself in £100 and one surety in £100.

"LAW. CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (22 December 1863), 5 

MONDAY [21 December] FIRST COURT. BEFORE the Chief Justice [Alfred Stephen]. . . BIGAMY. Charles Sandys Packer was arraigned for that on the 19th May, 1836, in the parish of St. George the Martyr, county of Middlesex, England, he married one Eleanor Mary Theresa Grogan, and that afterwards whilst so married he did on the 21st August, 1852, at Hobart Town, Tasmania, unlawfully marry one Mary Frances Moore, his former wife being then alive.

Mr. Isaacs applied for a postponement of the trial on the ground that Sir John Young, a material witness, was not forthcoming. The Attorney-General intimated that his Excellency Sir John Young was prepared to attend if desired, and, after some remarks, the case proceeded.

Prisoner pleaded not guilty. He was defended by Mr. Isaacs and Mr. Powell; attorney Mr. R. B. Smith.

Sergeant Matthew M'Keogh, having been sworn, deposed that he was a sergeant in the Sydney police force. He apprehended the prisoner at the Central Police Court, Sydney, on warrant, on Friday, the 20th November.

John Dillon, solicitor, deposed: About the 16th May, 1855, I saw the prisoner, who was then in Parramatta; I was employed on behalf of Mrs. Packer; I told him I had come on unpleasant business, and did not wish to wound either his or Mrs. Packer's feelings; I put this paper (a copy of certificate of prisoner's marriage to Miss Grogan attested by the curate of the parish church) into prisoner's hand, and prisoner, after having looked at it and read it, said "that's true, that's correct." [Mr. Isaacs submitted that the document could not be received, and had no validity whatever. His Honor overruled the objection, and admitted the document as evidence of a portion of a conversation.] Mrs. Packer was in the house at the time, but was not present at the interview: I required him to make an allowance for his wife (the Mrs. Packer referred to in the certificate), which he agreed to do; he concluded to pay £10 a quarter to me for remittance to Mrs. Packer; I insisted upon an immediate payment, and he paid me £20 a few days afterwards; he has subsequently made me different payments in sums of £10 each, which in all amounted to about £40 ; prisoner was with me at Nash's Hotel, but the interview took place at the house where he lived near Parramatta; I think it was in the early part of the day, as Mrs. Packer told me, that he was dressing; I waited a short time, and the interview took place soon after I arrived; I don't think I saw him at the house either before that time or after it; he stated that Miss Grogan knew of his having been previously married, and that she had insisted on his marrying her to save her reputation with her family and friends; he said he had never once heard from Miss Grogan or her friends since his transportation.

William Lee Bugle, foreman at the Australian Gas Company's Works, deposed: I have been in the colony eleven or twelve years; before I came to this colony I lived from 1847 to 1852 with Sir John Yonng in the north of Ireland; the family sometimes visited London and France; Mrs. Packer was there when I went to and when I left Sir John Young's service; she is living with him now; the person before the court is the lady I have spoken of . . .

I received the letter produced from Mrs. Packer at Government House; the letter is in prisoner's handwriting, addressed to Mrs. Holloway, and bears his signature; I showed the prisoner this letter; he told me Mrs. Holloway was his sister; this took place about a month ego; Mrs. Packer acted as housekeeper and lady's maid in Sir John Young's family , I believe from 1841. I called on the prisoner about twelve months after I came here, and as soon as I knew of the prisoner's arrival; Mrs. Packer and two of Sir John Young's sisters, had requested me to make enquiries before I left Ireland; I never heard when in Sir John Young's service, that Mrs. Packer either heard from or communicated with the prisoner since 1841; I am positive that the prisoner told me on one occasion that he had heard his wife was dead, and on another occasion that he had heard that she had run away with a person in Italy; on all occasions he said he had not heard from Mrs. Packor for seven years; prisoner said that the last letter he received from her was in 1841, which was enclosed in a packet he got from home when at Norfolk Island. [The letter addressed by prisoner to Mrs. Holloway was put in evidence and read. In it the prisoner referred in endearing terms to a person named Eleanor. It was dated Spithead, 25th November, 1839, and was penned when the prisoner was leaving England.]

Mary Frances Packer deposed: I first took my present name on the 21st August, 1852, when I was married by Dr. Fry to the prisoner at St, George's church, Hobart Town; my maiden name was Mary Frances Moore; before the ceremony took place I had known Dr. Fry for some time as a friend of my father, and as the officiating minister of St. George's; I knew the prisoner about two months' before our marriage; I met him at a party; he came to my father's house once or twice clandestinely; he came on the first occasion to give me some music, and afterwards he came five or six times when my father was absent: my father heard of his coming and forbade his visits; I then met him at a place called the reservoir, about ten o'clock in the morning, and he took me thence to St. George's Church, and we were married by Dr. Fry; I returned home and remained for about a fortnight, until the 4th September, 1852. I was then nearly eighteen years of age; my father heard of the ceremony about a week afterwards, and he (Mr. Packer) took me to his house at Brown's River; on the 30th August, accompanied by my father and the other members of our family, we went to the Roman Catholic Church for the purpose of being there married by the Rev. Mr. Hall, the Vicar-General, according to the rites of that persuasion; a woman named Cranston came into the chapel and forbade the marriage; she said that she had letters in her possession that would prove Mr. Packer to have been married, and that he had a wife living at home; the prisoner made some remarks to my father which I did not hear; the ceremony was not proceeded with, and we all went away; I had seen the woman Cranston the night before, when she came to my father's house, and in the presence of the prisoner said that he had forsaken her; that she thought he was looking after one of the Miss Moore's, and that she would expose his character; I asked her what she meant, and she said that the person she alluded to as prisoner's wife was named Grogan; prisoner said he would give a satisfactory explanation to my father; I have often heard reports that the prisoner was married, and I told him of them, and inquired whether or not they were true; prisoner said he had never been married; about three months before our marriage prisoner's brother was in Hobart Town, and prisonor told me he had come from England; the prisoner offered to take my father and the Vicar-General to him to convince them that he had not been married; at the time of our marriage the prisoner heard from his friends in England, and occasionally had letters from them; he only showed me the letter produced, which is from his mother.

The Attorney-General proposed to put this letter in evidence. Mr. Isaacs argued, at great length, against the admissibility of the document as evidence. His Honor overruled the objection, and the letter was received. The letter dated London, August 24 1851, was read, and among other remarks the following sentence occurred: "I trust we may hear from you in answer to the several letters I have sent you. We are at a loss to account for your silence.

Cross-examined by Mr. Isaacs: My husband gave me the letter about six months after we were married, when we were living at Bachelor Point, Hobart Town; I showed the letter to my sister, Mrs. Jones, who lives on the Murrumbidgee, I have not shown it to anyone else until today, when I mentioned it to my solicitor; I am not aware that Mr. Packer cannot give evidence in this case.

By the Attorney-General: He never showed me any other letters but that one which has been read; on the arrival of the Governor, Dr. Wilson, the Minister for Works, called at my house and told me that Mrs. Packer had arrived, and the prisoner told me that the woman was not his wife and that she was the same person with whom he had lived; I told him that he ought to proceed against the Governor on account of professional losses from the slander circulated; he said afterwards that he had seen Sir William Manning, who had told him that I was his wife; he had said that he had married this woman in a Portuguese chapel, in London, in order to satisfy her mother, and to show that she had some claims upon him; at the same time he mentioned to me that he had sent money home to Miss Grogan to prevent any disturbance out here. He said had introduced Miss Grogan to his father as his wife.

Croes-examined by Mr. Isaacs: I left Mr. Packer about twelve months after Sir John Young's arrival in the colony my father died on the 6th of August last, and Mr. Packer's brother died about eighteen months ago; about ten months after I left Mr. Packer, I went to Auckland, and on my return to Sydney last February I consulted Meesrs. Johnson and Johnson; my solicitors obtained an order from a Judge in Chambers for liberty to trade on my own account, at anothor time I applied for a divorce; I had known of Mr. Packer being in Tasmnnia for five or six years before our marriage; my father was the proprietor of the Hobart Town Guardian and removed to Auckland seven or eight years ago; my father wished me to be married to another person, and when he forbade Mr. Packer's visit, it was on account of his (the prisoner's) character, though at the time I thought his disapprobation arose from personal dislike; Mr. Packer was a favourite with my mother; I am not aware that Mr. Packer had proposed our marriage to my father; my sister, Ellen Agnes Moore, who is eighteen months younger than myself, was present at my marriage in Saint George's Church; Mr. Freeman, a friend of Mr. Packer's, also witnessed the ceremony; I do not know that Dr. Fry knew me; Mr. Packer told me that we were married by special license.

By the Attorney-General: When, about six years ago, a question was raised about my marriage, I asked Mr. Packer for the certificate, and he wrote to Dr. Fry, who, the prisoner told me, sent up the document produced. The certificate was received in evidence.

Cross-examined by Mr. Isaacs: Mr. Packer did not return home with me; I next saw him on the Wednesday evening following; I first saw the woman Cranston on the second Sunday night (August 29th) after our marriage; my eldest sister was in the house at the time; the woman Cranston never produced the marriage lines [? banns] of which she spoke in the in the church, and I am not aware whether my father took any steps to obtain them; I never heard positively of the prisoner's previous marriage until a month before the arrival of Sir John Young; when Mr. Packer was at Hobart Town, he was a professor of music, and the lessee of a theatre; at one time I told Mr. Packer that if I were free from him I might get married again; I did not know him to receive any communication from his family excepting the letter to his mother and those from his brother; I know Mr. Dillon; I first saw him at our cottage in Parramatta; Mr. Packer told me when he was going to the Fiji Islands; I had heard of his former marriage before that time; I resided with the prisoner about eight years and a half in this colony; he did not make any attempt to leave the colony after the arrival of Sir John Young except to go to the Fijis; my mother has been dead ten years.

This concluded the case for the Crown.

Mr. Isaacs said that he did not intend to call any witnessed for the defence, and asked his Honor to tell the jury that the Crown had failed to offer any evidence from which it could with safety and propriety be inferred that the prisoner, at the time of his second marriage in 1852, knew of his former wife being then alive, or had any knowledge of her for seven years previously.

His Honor was of opinion that there was evidence to go before the jury. If the jury thought that the prisoner had the means of knowledge, they were entitled, looking at all the circumstances of the case, to draw their own conclusions as to whether he did or did not know of his wife being living at the time of his marriage in 1852.

Mr. Isaacs addressed the jury for three hours and a-quarter, and contended that the prisoner did not know of his former wife being alive when he contracted the second marriage at Hobart Town in 1852, and that he had then no, or at most but imperfect means of knowing whether she was then living, lt was the duty of the Crown to establish by evidence the prisoner's knowledge before calling upon him for his defence.

Mr. Windeyer, in reply, stated that the evidence of the prisoner's first marriage rested to a great extent on his own repeated admissions; the burdon of proof lay in this instance upon the prisoner and not on the Crown. At the time of his second marriage, and subsequently, prisoner had spoken of his first wife as his mistress, and it was not till seen by Bugle that prisonor admitted that she was alive, and it was only then that he said that he had not heard of her for seven years, that she had run away, and other subterfuges. The letter of the prisoner's mother proved that there had been many letters written from his family at home, and this circumstance afforded a strong presumption that he must have constantly known and heard of his wife. He submitted that the prisoner's first marriage had not only been proved to be valid, but it had been conclusively shown that at the time of his second marriage he must then have known that his first wife was then alive.

His Honor reviewed the evidence, and explained the law bearing on the case. He held, that in determining whether the prisoner had the knowledge that his wife was alive at the time of the second marriage, the jury ought to look at all the circumstances of the case - at the prisoner's means of knowledge - his apparent motive at the time, whether honest or dishonest - the facts of communication from his family or otherwise - and generally his conduct in reference to the second marriage - whether he had consistently asserted his ignorance and so acted, or had been guilty of misrepresentation - whether, in short, the circumstances were such as would probably and naturally mark the conduct of a man marrying in truth, or, in fact, in ignorance of his first wife's existence; or, on the contrary, whether they were such as indicated the consciousness of her really being alive, or whether or not his intention to secure the person of the plaintiff. In the latter case they would find the prisoner guilty; in the former case he would be entitled to an acquittal.

The jury retired, and after ten minutes' absence returned with a verdictct of guilty. The prisoner having been asked if he had anything to show why sentence should not be passed upon him, stated that he had never heard from his first wife between the years 1841 and 1852. The prisoner was then sentenced to five years' hard labour on the roads or other public works of the colony.

The Court rose at one o'clock this morning.

"COLONIAL EXTRACTS", Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald and General Advertiser (12 January 1864), 4 

The Sydney correspohdent of the Western Post says:-

"Poor old Packer bas been convicted of bigamy, and sentenced to five years at Cockatoo. This will kill him. The severity of the sentence has excited much comment. It is not long ago since a man from Goulbhrn married a girl here under most aggravating circumstances, and he only got two years, which, by-the-by, he did not fully serve. Packer, who was transported from England long ago for forgery, though it is pretty clear he has not seen his first wife for twenty years, gets five years on the roads. Now the Goulburn man came straight from his wife and married a girl in the most reckless manner. It is satisfactory to know that the real wife, when she visited him at Darlinghurst, flew at him like a tigress, and tore a good handful of hair out of his head. The musical world, in losing Packer, loses the greatest musician in this continent.

"LAW. SUPREME COURT", The Sydney Morning Herald (11 March 1864), 2 



This was a special case from the last sittings of the Supreme Court, in its criminal jurisdiction, at Darlinghurst. The prisoner had been convicted of bigamy and sentenced to five years' penal servitude. Several points were taken by prisoner's counsel during the trial, upon which argument was now heard; as also upon one which had been reserved by the Chief Justice who tried the case. Mr. Isaacs and Mr. Powell appeared in support of the objections, and the Attorney-General in support of the conviction. Their Honors, however, refused to hear a second counsel for the prisoner, or to hear prisoner's counsel in reply.

The objection had partial reference to the reception of particular pieces of evidence - letters from Europe and copies of an alleged marriage certificate - as tending to prove prisoner's knowledge of the fact that his first wife was living at the time he contracted a second marriage. The principal point, however, was, as to whether the finding of the jury as to the prisoner having this knowledge was, in fact, sustainable. The first marriage had been contracted in Europe, and the second marriage in Tasmania. More then seven years had elapsed, during which prisoner and his first wife had been living in different countries - the wife in Europe and the husband in Tasmania, where prisoner contracted his second marriage. It was contended that under these circumstances the prisoner may be prima facie held discharged from all obligation to enquire after his first wife, and the onus was cast upon the Crown of showing that the prisoner had had knowledge of the fact that his first wife was living when he married the second. The point reserved by the Chief Justice was, as to whether the indictment would lie. The Bigamy Act (or rather the statute containing the provisions under which the indictment for bigamy was framed) was an English statute. It was placed in operation here and in Tasmania simultaneously by the Constitution Act of 9 George IV. The second marriage took place in Tasmania, and the question was whether such being the case the charge of bigamy, which offence was thus committed in Tasmania, could be tried in New South Wales. Their Honors sustained the conviction.

The letters, &c., they held had been properly admitted as evidenciary of prisoner's means of knowledge, and as parts of the conversations between the prisoner and the persons to whom he had spoken of these documents. The proof that the prisoner had been in constant communication with his relatives in Europe, as well as his own admissions and statements touching his first wife, were amply sufficient to sustain the verdict of the jury; and the Constitution Act being a statute of the Imperial Parliament was sufficient to render an offence committed in the one colony punishable in the other, giving jurisdiction, in fact, in such cases, to the Courts of both.

"BERTRAND AND THE CHOIR AT DARLINGHURST GOAL [sic]", Wagga Wagga Express and Murrumbidgee District Advertiser (3 March 1866), 2 

We were shown the other day a private communication recently received from Sydney in which was related the following anecdote, which we have every reason to regard as authentic:- It will be remembered that some time ago, Packer, the well-known musician, was convicted of bigamy and sentenced to a term of imprisonment in Darlinghurst Gaol. Since his incarceration he has organised a very efficient choir in the prison and on Sunday week last while conducting the musical part of the service as usual, Bertrand walked in and seated himself with the singers. Packer requested him to leave, saying "that his company was not wanted at any price," and added that if he did not relieve them of his presence the choir would remain silent. Bertrand thereupon withdrew and the singing was proceeded with. It is stated that Packer has composed two very beautiful pieces of sacred music since his confinement at Darlinghurst.


The first concert given for the gratification of patients in any hospital for the insane in New South Wales took place on Wednesday evening last. The marked success which has of late years attended similar entertainments in the best-conducted establishments in Great Britain induced Dr. Manning, the present superintendent at Gladesville, to make an early effort in the some direction for the benefit and pleasure of the patients under his care. On the present occasion he applied, in the first instance, to Mr. Fisher, vocal instructor to the Education Board, who readily undertook to organise a body of lady and gentlemen singers for the purpose; unfortunately, however, indisposition prevented him from carrying out his plans. Mr. Hall, of George-street, was next applied to, and entered warmly into the scheme. The vocalists who accepted Mr. Hall's invitation to join him were Miss Wiseman, Miss Vernon, and Messrs. Chandler, Hall, Jackson, and Rudd; Mr. Packer accompanying upon the piano . . .

Marriages in the district of Hobart, 1869; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:870919; RGD37/1/28 no 126 

[No.] 202 / March 1st 1869 St David's Hobart Town / Frederick Augustus Gow Packer, 30, Bachelor, Marianne Chamberlain, 18, Spinster . . .

"GRAND EVENING CONCERT", The Sydney Morning Herald (20 July 1869), 4 

. . . The main instrumentalists were Messrs. Packer and Horsley (pianoforte), and Mr. Greenfield (violin) . . .. This was followed by an instrumental duet "Variations, &c, de Lucia pour Piano" (Prudent), by Messrs. Packer and Horsley, whoso admirable execution was well appreciated, although the instrument used was not calculated to give due effect to the ability displayed . . .

[Advertisement], The Sydney Morning Herald (22 December 1869), 8

"MARRIAGES", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 March 1874), 1 

PACKER-LATHAM. - January 4, 1873, at Granite-terrace, Fitzroy, Melbourne, by the Rev. Robert Hamilton, Charles Stuart Sandys Packer, professor of music, to Lucy, daughter of the late George Latham, Esq., of Victoria.

Marriages in the district of Hobart, 1890; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:911119; RGD37/1/49 no 825 

[No.] 477 / Nov. 22. 1890 S. David's Cathedral / Frederick Augstus Gow Packer, full age, Clerk of the House of Assembly, Clarice Octavia Allison, full age . . .

Deaths in the district of Hobart, 1893; Tasmanian names index; NAME_INDEXES:1139168; RGD35/1/14 no 200 

[No.] 200 / 23rd February 1893 / Augusta Packer died Barracks, Hobart (Born England) / Female / 77 years / (1) Apoplexy (2) Hemiplegia / . . .

"ORGANIST'S UNIQUE RECORD", The Mercury (1 September 1923), 15

. . . Her father, Mr. Joseph Reichenberg, who died in 1851, was bandmaster of H.M. 40th Regiment, and conducted the first musical concert of which there is a record in Hobart as far back as 1826. In 1841, when the church of St. Joseph was first opened, he became its first choirmaster and organist, and among his successors prior to his daughter taking her position were the late Charles Packer, uncle to the well-known musical family of that name and a musician of the highest degree . . .

Musical works (Charles Sandys Packer)

Extant - heading in red

Lost or unidentified - heading in black

3 canons (1824)

Above, opening of Canon [1], image reproduced by kind permission of the Royal Academy of Music, 2017

London, Royal Academy of Music, library, MS203 [Royal Academy of Music students' compositions, 1823-33], from online catalogue record (

[1] Canon 3 in 1, 8've above [in E major], C. S. Packer, Nov. 19th, 1824 (pp. 41-42)

[2] Canon 4 in 2 on the 8've above [in C minor], C. S. Packer. Decr 11th, 1824 (pp. 46-47)

[3] Canon 2 in 1, 12th above [in B flat major], C. S. Packer March 25th, [1824] (p. 55)

This 250 page collection of bound manuscripts contains student exercises by many of those pupils named in other documentation presented, and also including several by Anne Riviere (Anna Bishop)

DOWNLOAD PDF (courtesy of the Royal Academy of Music, 2017)

Sinfonie (Symphony in D) (n.d. ? c.1830s)

Above, Sinfonie, pages 1 and 2 of the principal violin part, images reproduced by kind permission of the Royal Academy of Music, 2017

Royal Academy of Music, library, Orchestral library 282; from online catalogue record (

[covers] Sinfonie [in D major], S. C. Packer [sic] / C. S. Packer [headings]

MS orchestral parts: principal violin, 2nd violin, viola, violoncello e basso 1o, flutes, oboes, clarinets (C), bassoons, horns, trumpets, trombone and timpani; a single movement consisting of short slow introduction (Adagio, C, D minor) and sonata section (Allegro moderato, 3/4, D major).

Del fallo m'avvedo (recitativo: "Basta! Basta!"): scena (f.p. ? 1825; publ. 1828)

Above, pages 1 and 4, images reproduced by kind permission of the Royal Academy of Music, 2017

Scena, recitativo, Basta! Basta!, ed aria, Del' fallo m'avvedo, the words from Metastasio's La morte d'Abelle, sung by Mr. A. Sapio, composed and respectfully dedicated (by permission) to the Right Hon. the Committee of the Royal Academy of Music, hy Charles S. Packer, member of that institution

(London: published for the Author, by S. Chappell, No. 135, New Bond-street, [1828])

Copy at the British Library, Music Collections H.2832.f.(6.); 004565778

Copy at Royal Academy of Music library (47.51 PACKER, C.S.)

DOWNLOAD PDF (courtesy of the Royal Academy of Music, 2017)

Duo concertante for piano and violin (? 1828)

"Concertante Duet, composed by Mr. C. S. Packer, for the piano-forte and violin"

? First performance, Reading, 11 December 1828; Charles S. Packer, piano; C. Lucas, violin


Several later Australian performances of a Duo concertante by Packer for piano and violin, plausibly the same work, were advertised and reported

Crudo ciel (recitativo: Oh me infelice): scena nell'opera "Bayardo e Gastone" (? f. p. 1830)

Above, pages 2 and 6, images reproduced by kind permission of the Royal Academy of Music, 2017

SCENA - "Ah me infelice," Miss CHILDE, composed and dedicated, by permission, to Her Grace the Duchess of Wellington, by C. S. Packer

? First performance, Reading, 15 April 1830

Scena, recitative, Oh me infelice, ed aria Crudo ciel, nell opera Bayardo e Gastone, sung by Miss Bellchambers, composed and most respectfully dedicated by permission to Her Grace the Duchess of Wellington, by Charles S. Packer, member of the Royal Academy of Music in London

(London: Published for the author by S. Chappell, . . . 135, New Bond Street, [1830/31])

Copy at Royal Academy of Music library (47.51 PACKER, C.S.)

DOWNLOAD PDF (courtesy of the Royal Academy of Music, 2017)

God save the king (arr. Packer, 1830)

Finale - "God save the King, newly arranged expressly for this Concert, by C. S. Packer.

? First performance, Reading, 15 April 1830


Di luna al raggio pallido (terzettino) (1830: ? f.p. 1831)

Di luna al raggio pallido, terzettino, [words] Carlo Pepoli, [music] C. S. Packer

De Luna al Raggio; terzettino, composed expressly for and dedicated to the Misses Carlisle - C. S. Packer

(London, [? ], [? 1830-4])

Copy at the British Library, Music Collections H.2826.c.(26.); 004565779

Words from Carlo Pepoli, "Canzoni Anacreontiche da poesi in musica", no. 3

In Per le faustissime nozze della nobil donzella march . . . (Florences: Di Dante, 1825), [PP31] 

Oh, pleasant land of France, farewell (? 1832)

Dramatic scene [Mary, Queen of Scots] Oh, pleasant land of France, farewell; words Mary Russell Mitford, music Charles Sandys Packer

? First performance, London, April 1832


[Words] Mary Russell Mitford, Our village: sketches of rural character and scenery, volume 5 (London: Whitaker, Treacher, & Co., 1832), 298-99 

Oh think of me (by 1834)

Oh think of me; composed and dedicated to Lady Colvile, by C. S. Packer.

([? London: ? 1834])


For advertisement see above 20 September 1834

May day (by 1834)

May day; words by Miss Mary Russell Mitford - C. S. Packer

([? London: ? 1834])


For advertisement see above 20 September 1834

How often in that silent hour (by 1834)

How often in that silent hour; ballad, composed by C. S. Packer.

([? London: ? 1834])


For advertisement see above 20 September 1834

Sadak and Kalasrade; or, The waters of oblivion (opera in 2 acts, 1835)

Sadak and Kalasrade; or, The waters of oblivion, a romantic opera in 2 acts, words by Mary Russell Mitford, music by Charles Sandys Packer; first performed, Lyseum English Opera House, London, 20 April 1835

Original MS performance materials for the 1835 London premiere, London, British Library:

Additional MS 36575 (422 folios; piano score, acts 1 and 2, fols. 1-230; various vocal partbooks, fols. 231-422)

Add. MS 36576 (341 folios, orchestral parts, winds, brass, harp, &.)

Add. MS 36577 (449 folios, orchestral parts, strings)

Add. MS 33811 (240 folios, overture, orchestral parts)

Wordbook, published May 1835:

Sadak and Kalasrade; or, The waters of oblivion, a romantic opera in two acts by Mary Russell Mitford . . . first performed at the New Theatre Royal, Lyceum and English Opera House, on Monday, April 20, 1835, the whole of the music composed by Mr. Packer of the Royal Academy

(London: Printed for the proprietor by S. G. Fairbrother, 1835) (DIGITISED) (DIGITISED)

See also collected edition, with Mitford's later introduction:

Mary Russell Mitford, The dramatic works, vol. 2 (London: Hurst and Blackett, 1854), 1-45 

Modern edition of the Overture and terzetto O'er the far mountain, by Tryone Landau (April 2017):,_Charles_Sandys)

? O come again tomorrow (?)

O come again tomorrow; words: R. R.; music: Charles Packer

(London, [1858])

Copy at British Library, Music H.1771.o.(1.);004565777; dated "1858" in catalogue

Possibly by Charles Packer, senior?

Musical works (Frederick Alexander Packer)

Extant - heading in red

Lost or unidentified - heading in black, frederick alexander

Maureen (Irish ballad, ? 1834)

Maureen, a ballad; composed and dedicated, by permission, to H. R. H. the princess Victoria, by F. A. Packer, of R. A. of Music ; the words by Boulger, Esq.

(London: J. Duff, [1834]); publisher's number 237

Copy at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York, British vocal music collection, ML136.B942M78, no. 696 

For advertisement see above 20 September 1834

review 4 October 1834

and for an anecdote concerning this work and its dedication, 2 September 1862

Come, Kate, with me (? 1834)

Come, Kate, with me; composed and dedicated to Mrs. G. Bruin, by F. A. Packer; the words the late Mrs. Field

([? : ?, 1834])


For advertisement see above 20 September 1834

and review 4 October 1834

Take the flower (? 1834)

Take the flower; composed and dedicated to the Right Hon. Lady Kennedy Erskine, by F. A. Packer; the words from Dr. Beattie's Journal of residence in Germany.

([? Reading: ? Packer, by 1834])

I could not dream (? 1834)

I could not dream; words by W. Boulger, Esq. F. A. Packer.

([? Reading: ? Packer, by 1834])

I think of thee (? 1834)

"I think of thee;" from Goethe's Poems - F. A. Packer.

([? Reading: ? Packer, by 1834])

Mazurka (? 1845 / 1861)

Mazurka [for piano forte], by F. A. Packer

(London: [1845])

Copy at British Library, Music Collections h.933.(1.); BLL01004565782

Mazurka, composed and dedictaed to Miss S. Louise Crawshay, by F. A. packer, R.A.M.

(London: Published for the author by Messrs. R. Cocks & Co.,; Melbourne: Messrs. Clarson & Shallard, [1861])

Copy at the State Library of Tasmania (DIGITISED)

Photocopy of the above, at the National Library of Australia (DIGITISED)

The Eglantine polka (1851)

The Eglantine polka [for piano forte], by F. A. Packer

(London, [1851])

Copy at British Library, Music Collections h.967.(32.); BLL01004565780

Fairy sisters (by 1862, ? posthumous f. p. Hobart, November 1862)

Fairy sisters; two-part song, by F. A. Packer

([London]: Hutchings & Romer's . . . Choruses for treble voices, etc. No. 72., [1886])

Copy at British Library, Music Collections F.1534.; BLL01004565781

Oh! sing once more that parting strain (by 1862)

Oh! sing once more that parting strain; Song, wWords by G. Hodder; music by F. A. Packer

(London, [1862])

Copy at British Library, Music Collections H.1772.y.(4.); BLL01004565783

The volunteer polka

Copy at the State Library of Tasmania (DIGITISED)

Musical works (Frederick Augustus Packer)

Extant - heading in red

Lost or unidentified - heading in black

Violette (by 1862)

Violette, ballad , by F. A. Packer ["I dream of thee"]

(London: J. H. Jewell, [1863?])

Copy at the State Library of Tasmania (DIGITISED)

Copy at British Library, Music Collections H.1772.y.(5.); BLL01004565784; incorrectly attributed to Frederick Alexander Packer

Wouldn't you like to know (1869)

Wouldn't you like to know, words taken from the Australian journal; music by F.A. Packer

(Boston: G. D. Russell & Company, [? 1863-77])

Copy at the University of Michigan; Hathi Trust (DIGITISED)

Wouldn't you like to know; song ["I know a girl"], by F. A. Packer

(London, [1869])

Copy at British Library, Music Collections H.1776.(19.); BLL01004565785; incorrectly attributed to Frederick Alexander Packer

Words first appeared in The Australian Journal (10 February 1866)

Bibliography and resources:

Howell 1966

P. A. Howell, "Of ships and sealing wax: the Montagus, the navy and the law", Papers and proceedings: Tasmanian Historical Research Association 13/4 (August 1966), (101-128), 119;dn=81114274608;res=IELAPA (PAYWALL)

. . . Because of his position as a Judge, the social entertainments given at "Rosny" in those years were for a select few. Still playing the patron, Montagu gave shelter to C. S. Packer, a transportee whom he considered "a gentleman of extraordinary musical genius." In his youth, Packer had been a concert pianist. Then he had turned teacher. Sir Robert Peel's daughters had studied under him for about ten years. Packer was transported in 1839-40, for forgery. He went to Montagu as a passholder, and instead of being put to work on the Judge's farm, he was allowed to take pupils and give private recitals . . .

Skinner 2011

Graeme Skinner, Toward a general history of Australian musical composition: first national music, 1788-c. 1860 (Ph.D thesis, Sydney Conservatorium of Music, University of Sydney, 2011) (DIGITISED)

"Sadak and Kalasrade", Victorian English opera 

"Packer, Charles" [senior], Pianoforte-makers in England, Histoire de pianos (website 2004-2017) 

"Towns, Thomas", Pianoforte-makers in England, Histoire de pianos (website 2004-2017)

© Graeme Skinner 2014 - 2019