Local Identities

Offer Family – Obituaries

Henry Offer, Snr, died 1913 – Obituary

The band of pioneers who came to Western Australia in days that now seem dim past is steadily dwindling. The last to go across the border is Mr. Henry Offer, senior, of Benger.

As long ago as 1851 (62 years) Mr. Offer, a young man of 22, arrived at Australind, then the centre of the hopes of as gallant a band of pioneers who have set forth to tame the wastes of the outskirts of Empire.[1] He was here a few years when he resolved to settle down, and his marriage with Miss Catherine Toohey [spelling varies considerably] was celebrated at Australind on July 17th, 1854.

Two years later Mr. and Mrs. Offer moved to Benger, where they have resided since. Mr. Offer leaves a widow (75 years of age) and nine children, thirty-three grand-children, and six great grand-children to mourn their loss. A son, John Offer, died two years ago.

The family surviving comprise: Mrs. J. H. Mort, Bunbury; Edward Offer, Denmark; Henry Offer, Burrekupp; Jane Offer, Benger; Charles Offer, Benger; John Nuttall, Picton; Mrs. G. Jarvis, Perth; Tom Offer, Benger and Mrs. Dalton, Benger.

Mr. Offer was 84 years of age at his death, and in another year next July 17th would have celebrated his diamond wedding. He had been in failing health for the last two years, but kept his faculties, and two days before death he was up in a chair at his home. The funeral took place on Tuesday [at Bunbury] and was largely attended. The pall-bearers were Messrs. Partridge, J.P., Thos. Hayward. jun. J.P., Fred Hamilton, W. Piggott. G. H. Fry and A. C. Barnes.

The chief mourners were Mrs. J. H. Mort, Mrs. Nuttall, Mrs. Jarvis, Mrs. Dalton, Mrs. Henry Offer, jun. and Messrs. Henry, Charles, and Tom Offer. Amongst the many floral tributes were noticed those from Hilda and Baby Nuttall, Little Friends Fry, Charlie and Daisy Offer, Mr. and Mrs. Barnes, Elsie, Reggie, Linda, and Ruby Offer, Mr. and Mrs. T. Offer, Lew and Rose Piggott, Mrs. O’Neill, and Stella and Charlie Mort.

(Bunbury Herald, 28 August 1913)

Mrs Catherine Offer née Toohey, died 1915 – Obituary

The death occurred in Bunbury yesterday afternoon, very suddenly, of Mrs Catherine Offer, relict of the late Mr. Henry Offer, of Benger. The late Mrs Offer came to Bunbury about a fortnight ago on a visit to Mrs. John Mort, of Spencer-street, her daughter. About 11.30 o’clock yesterday morning Mrs. Offer, who was then staying with her daughter Mrs John Nuttall, at Toronto House, complained of having a pain in her back. Mrs Nuttall commenced massaging, but in ten minutes Mrs. Offer had passed away. Dr. Flynn was called in, but nothing could be done. The cause is stated to be haemorrhage of the brain. The deceased had just returned from the Bunbury Cemetery, where she had been looking at the grave of her late husband.

Mrs. Offer was born in Ireland in 1840, and was 75 years of age at the time of her death.[2] In 1845 she came to Australia, and was attached to the Clifton family, who were living at Australind, and was married soon after to Mr. Henry Offer, of Benger.[3] She resided at Benger during the remaining years.[4] There are four sons and five daughters surviving, and one deceased, Mr. John Offer, who died in Perth about three years ago.

The surviving children are: Mrs John Mort, of Spencer-street, Bunbury; Mr. Edward Offer, of Denmark, Miss Jane Offer, of Benger; Mr. Charles Offer, of “Brookside” Benger; Mrs J. Nuttall, of Bunbury; Mrs Geo. Jarvis, of Perth; Mr. Thos Offer, of Benger; and Mr. Wm. Dalton, of Benger. There are 36 grand-children and seven great-grand-children.

The funeral took place at 3 o’clock this afternoon, when the Rev. Canon Adams officiated, and the remains of the deceased were laid to rest alongside those of her departed husband [at Bunbury]. All the children were present except Mr. Edward Offer, who was not able to travel from Denmark in time.

The pall-bearers were Messrs E. M. Clarke M.L.C., S. H. Fry, Thos. Hayward, junr., Thos. Marriott, J. M. Alting, and C. Egglestone.

Amongst a large number of beautiful floral emblems were those from the following: Mr and Mrs T. Offer and family, Mr and Mrs C. Offer, Mr and Mrs Nuttall and family, Mr and Mrs Lew Piggott, Carlotta and Doris Piggott (great grand-daughters), Mr and Mrs Ecclestone, Mrs and the Misses Mitchell, Mr and Mrs Meyers and family, Mr and Mrs Henry Jarvis, Mr and Mrs Buchanan and family, Ted, Mervyn, Myrtle and Ivy Offer (grandchildren), Mr and Mrs A. R. Foreman and family, Miss O’Dea and staff, Mr and Mrs H. Rosser, Mr. and Mrs J. Wenn, Mr Stott and family, Mr and Mrs T. Brittain. Mr and Mrs Fry and family, Mrs Woodrow, Charlie and Stella.

(Southern Times, 13 May 1915)

Henry Offer, Jnr’s (1861 – 1951) – Funeral

The funeral of Mr. Henry Offer, of Benger, took place in. the Church of England portion of the Bunbury cemetery on May 28. He was in his 90th year when he died. The late Mr. Offer was born at Benger and lived his whole life there apart from short trips from time to time. His wife, who was Miss Mary Delaney, of Bunbury, predeceased him by some eight years. He is survived by a family of four sons and three married daughters. One son (George) resides at Kalgoorlie and another (Mervyn) in Perth. One daughter is now living in Brisbane. Pall bearers were: Messrs. E. Harvie, S. Miller, T. Smith, H. A. Andrews, W. Tyler and A. Gardiner.

(Harvey Murray Times, 15 June 1951)

[1] Henry Offer was a convict sent to Western Australia on the Minden in 1851. His trial notes show him born in 1821.

[2] Mrs Offer’s age varies from that given in her husband’s obituary above. The Western Australian Museum Welcome Walls site at http://www.museum.wa.gov.au/welcomewalls/names/toohey-catherine gives Catherine’s birth year as 1833 and that she came to Western Australia on the Travancore in 1853.

[3] Henry Offer and Catherine Toohey were married in 1854.

[4] According to the Henry Offer’s obituary above and in other obituaries, there were a few years between marriage and residence at Benger. This is borne out in the birth places of the children – Ellen, 1855 at Alverstoke; John, 1857 and Edward, 1859 at Australind before Henry was born at Benger in 1861 as were subsequent children.