With this in mind, the affective dimensions of Rabbit-Proof Fence , even if packaged for mass-market appeal, can also be seen as generative of new readings, openings and becomings. To read affect as the delimited outpouring of emotions or feelings alone ignores the possibilities for energy release that can elaborate ways of being in the world that are relational and fallible in contact with 'those things from outside, that surprise, that disturb, that introduce unpredictability' (Hawkins and Muecke xiv). Affect involves more than emotions or feeling. As a force affect gives rise to feeling, but also to acts of (re)cognition in multiple, contradictory and unmappable ways. The experience of affect is, according to Gay Hawkins and Stephen Muecke, 'to be in the world, to participate in it, to be moved by it' (xiv) without predetermination and, importantly, with a deliberate self-reflexivity, beyond vicarious identification. An ecological view of relations articulates this process and, in so doing, diffuses the certainty and linearity claimed to constrain the commodity chain.
Samuel Day and his wife Mary and 2 children arrived at Port Dalrymple on the Lady Nelson in 1813 from Norfolk Island. It seems possible that the 2 children were not theirs and that they were looking after them on the voyage.
Both Samuel and Mary had arrived on the First Fleet in 1788 and were later sent to Norfolk Island. Samuel was a very industious worker and often got into trouble for working outside his usual convict duties. (see Founder's of Australia by Mollie Gillen)
Samuel was growing grain on 3 acres of land on Norfolk Island in 1812 but does not seem to have had a grant, so he was not entitled to any in VDL on his arrival in 1813, but sometime after he arrived he did have 70 acres in the Morven district. In 1815 his signature was on the list for the establishment of a Criminal Court in Hobart living in the Port Dalrymple district. In 1818 he was appointed a constable again in Launceston.
Having no descendants Samuel and Mary are amongst the very few who do not have anyone to research their past. This is why I like to do something about them on my website in the hope that some will come forward with some information.
(As they did with Mary Bowater)
Not much is known about Samual and Mary's life in the Launceston area. In 1827 he was discribed as being destitute in Launceston without property or relatives, he was said to be ages 79 and his wife 69.
In May that same year (1827) he gave information to the court in Launceston as to having robbed. Some of the discriptions of the time is worth mentioning.
"I live in a hut about a mile from Launceston and had lived there with my wife Mary Day for about a month. We went to bed about 6 o'clock last night, there are two rooms to the hut we sleep in the inner room and there is only one door that leads out of the hut. I fastened the two windows in the hut and went to be bed, putting a stick into a hole in the ground and the other end under a ledge of the door. Later I heard the dog bark and a I saw the muzzle of a piece put in the doorway"
Samuel were robbed of two white shirts, one stripped shirt, a scarlet waistcoat, a pair of nankeen trowers, two or three old shirts, six shillings in silver and a penny in copper. Mary was robbed of a demity petticoat, a nankeen petticoat, a white bed gown,two printed bed gowns, one shift, several caps, a very large shawl, a piece of printed cotton, one blue and white and one white cotten handkerchiefs, a pair of cotton stockings, a prayer book, a psalter, a pair of scissors, a razor, some sewing cotten and some needles. Mary stated that she should know all the wearing apparel if she was to see it again, there was also a napkin taken away which she spoiled at Christmas by boiling a plain pudding in it. She also stated that her husband was 79 years and she was 70.
There is nothing in the records to say if they got any of their possessings back. I have found during my research others who lost all their worldly possessings through robbery or fire and have wondered how the managed to replace their belongings.
When Samuel died on the 8th May 1849 the following was placed in the Cornwell Chronicle.
Samuel Day a singular character and one whose history would not be uninteresting to the lovers of the eccentric. 106 years old. Died at the Colonial Hospital 8 May 1849. (Cornwell Chronicle 9th May 1849)
Ages stated at many of these early arrivals deaths were often extended by 10 years but this one beats them all.
Again my thanks to Julie Gough for the story of the robbery.