The city’s “saddest loss of life” was recorded in the Mercury during the June 1864 flood when two houses fell into the river.
A French woman, Mrs Eliza Robinson, who had come to Maitland from Nottingham was among the victims.
She had been a cotton lace spinner and in the French revolution of 1846 was driven out of France.
A number of them came to the colony to settle in Maitland.
Mrs Robinson, aged about 60, lived with Mr and Mrs Fairfield and their three children along with John Boyle (known as Jack the fisherman) and his wife in two-storey houses built on the river’s edge.
The Mercury reported how the two houses built on the river’s edge had fallen into the stream and their occupants were struggling in the midst of the rapid waters.
Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Feb. 1, 2014.