Was This The Ghost of The Prince’s Mistress? Or Wife?

There has been an unsolved mystery, and closely guarded secret, from the time of George the Fourth, Prince of Wales.

Was he married to this Roman Catholic widow?

Legitimately.

And did they have children?

Legitimately.

Heirs to the throne of England.

Would this have changed the course of history?

Two hundred years or so later there have been many attempts to answer those questions.

None very convincingly.

Have I uncovered a somewhat more convincing case.

Re-opened by a ghost.

A ghost whose story I stumbled upon while living, broke, in an old caravan parked by the roadside in a country town in the Australian bush.

Which led me on an amazing adventure across five countries seeking answers to the cover-up.

Here’s my true and shocking paranormal story.

Paranormal, yes.

About a ghost, yes.

Leading to genuine historical evidence to support the yes and yes case.

I’ve written the book called ‘The Great Regency Cover-Up’.

Order your copy now and see for yourself.

Love and peace.

Neil the Smith

PS. Buy the book HERE.

Urban Nomad. Who is the Smith?

I am the Smith.

I am the author.

Why ‘the Smith’?

The smiths were the crafters, the metal smiths, the blacksmiths, the makers of Medieval Britain a thousand years ago.

I am the wordsmith.

I’ve written and self-published 8 autobiographical books.

Click or tap the image above to see.

This smith has lived everywhere.

Over 50 dwellings have been my home.

An ancient aboriginal corroboree ground in a wilderness area known as Fairy Hills where the creek met the river was my first memory of life.

And only a few kilometres from the Melbourne CBD.

I’ve just learned they’ve been digging up ancient aboriginal artifacts that suggest this.

I’ve lived with psychics and healers.

And sat with mediums or channels.

I’ve lived with a Reiki Master in New York.

With a Roman Catholic nurse in the north of Italy.

With a Buddhist in the UK.

My lawyer was an Atheist.

I didn’t live with him.

I ran my own freelance copywriting business. in the ’70s

In 1972 I won an award for the best television campaign of the year for a brand of meat pies and donuts.

I was a New Age hippie.

We knew about climate change 50 years ago.

A group of us started a commune on 40 acres north of Melbourne to become self-sufficient and live off the grid.

A year later we’d failed.

I helped launch Animal Liberation here.

Our patron was Peter Singer, who was then Professor of Bioethics at Harvard., and wrote the book ‘Animal Liberation’.

45 years later it’s still active today.

I was the first member of the Permaculture Association.

Which, started by two Tasmanian academics in the late ’70s, today is changing the world

Now there are over one million people certified in Permaculture in over 140 countries with more than 4,000 projects on the ground.

I went bankrupt.

An article I researched and wrote 35 years ago – about the Swiss and Italian gold miners who came to Australia in the 1850s – triggered the launch of a Swiss-Italian Festa which is still running every year today in a local spa resort town.

Their story is in my book here.

I ran a social group called ‘The Springs Whole Health Group’.

We never ran out of guest speakers on healing topics, from ley lines to chemical sensitivity, who I’d enjoy interviewing every month before our next meeting.

Then I would write an article for the local paper which they always published on page 3 or 5.

This while living frugally in an old caravan parked at the end of a street in the spa resort town.

Over 5 years I became known as the man in the van.

I studied many spiritual philosophies.

I studied Religious Experience as an off campus mature age student at Uni –

The Christian Mystics

The Hindu Bhagavad-Gita.

Australian Aboriginal Dreaning.

I practiced Yoga for 50 years from wherever I called home.

Briefly I joined the Theosophical Society in Melbourne, with headquarters in Adyar, India, with the motto ‘There is no religion higher than Truth’.

I met and befriended the Librarian of the Melbourne branch, a Wise Woman, who taught me how and where and why to search for Truth.

What is Truth?

For a time I was married and today have the pleasure of a beautiful family of 2 lovely daughters, 3 adorable granddaughters and 2 mischievous great grandsons.

I’m truly blessed

Visit my 8 fun and entertaining autobiographical books on my Author Page here.

You can find more of my adventures in my autobiographical books.

Namaste.

Neil the Smith (author)

PS. I recommend – ‘Our Thoughts Can Change The World’ (104 pages) and The Great Regency Cover-Up’ (236 pages). Buy both now and pay less P&P.

Cover-Up in British Parliament

Faced with a scandal around the Prince of Wales – was he secretly married and were there children – in 1784 Opposition Leader Charles James Fox “warned that Maria’s situation as well as that of the Prince would be perilous if they went through a ceremony of marriage.” Get my book ‘The Great Regency Cover-Up’ to read my true mystery story. “A marriage with a Catholic would remove the Prince from the succession to the throne – if it were a real marriage – but that was just what it could not be … Fox went on to explain the anomalous position that any children of the marriage would be in; illegitimate when born, but possibly legitimized in later life, if the Prince were to give himself permission under the Royal Marriage Act to repeat the marriage when he became King.” The Prince ignored Fox’s warnings claiming that “there not only is, but never was, any grounds for these reports, which have of late been so malevolently circulated.” Then for some reason Maria did a complete about face and agreed to go ahead with the marriage and, in November, returned to England. “I have told him I will be his,” she wrote to Lady Anne Lindsay, her traveling companion who had returned to England ahead of her. “I know I injure him and perhaps destroy for ever my own tranquility.” In the light of her earlier insistence and against all the advice to the contrary, her high morals and staunch Catholic beliefs, I wonder what caused her to suddenly change her mind and reverse her original firm stand? Could it be that she was having his child? A legitimate child?

From page 105 of my book ‘The Great Regency Cover-Up’.

Love and Peace.

Neil.

Quotes from ‘The Most Polished Gentleman: George IV and the Women in his
Life’ by Cynthia Campbell, Kudos 1995. Page 83.

Have I Found Australia’s Secret King?

I’ve written a book revealing clues to a secret hidden until now in the Third Fleet of female convicts sent to the new colony of Australia.

The ship was named the ‘Mary Ann’.

Here is the cover of my true story showing a painting of a small boat with secrets being smuggled ashore even before she offloaded her cargo of suffering female convicts.

So what was the big hurry?

This rare unknown painting shows a small boat leaving the ‘Mary Ann’, the only all-female convict ship and one of eleven to sail to Australia from England in 1791 as the Third Fleet.

She sailed hastily a month ahead of the rest “under strange circumstances”.

“You have discerned an amazing story.” – Writer’s Digest

Right from the start there’s a paranormal mystery.

Why did the ‘Mary Ann’, the only all-female convict ship among the Third Fleet of convicts to Australia, leave England in 1791 in such a hurry before the rest of the fleet and “under strange circumstances”?

Who was the Commander of the ‘Lady Nelson’ and what was his true shocking identity?

Have I found the unsuspected unknown missing children of George IV?

Even legitimate children.

What happened to them?

Maybe I know.

ORDER your copy o this explosive new book HERE.

Best wishes.

Neil.

Ghost Busts 200 Year-Old Royal Cover-Up.

Was granny really a ghost on a mission?

Did she live 200 years ago as a wife of the Prince of Wales?

Was her story desperately covered up in the interests of the politics of the day?

And of saving the Prince of Wales’ head?

Read the full story in my book ‘Man Steps Off Planet’ (click here).

At a time of serious anti-Catholic sentiment, of the Gordon riots, even the memory of her deceased late husband who died from injuries he suffered in the riots, was the cover-up in the greater interests of the country, the Parliament . . . and the throne?

Has she returned to state her case for justice?

And legal rights and, as she would claim, a legitimate right to her place in history?

Okay, it’s merely conjecture, but read ‘Dr Desailly’s Secret’ and ‘Florence & The Ghost’ and you may wonder about what really happened 200 years ago.

A time when the Prince of Wales and the wife of a secret marriage, were living in dangerous times.

A time when even the fact that the Royal heir might have married a Catholic as well as against the wishes of the King, George III.

In a letter to the Prince of Wales, Whig politician and leader of the opposition Charles James Fox:

“warned that her situation as well as that of the Prince would be perilous if they went through a ceremony of marriage.”

But they did.

And not only that.

At first she refused all suggestion of marriage.

Then she changed her mind.

Could it be that she was having his child?

And was this child legitimate?

In the chapter ‘The Secret Marriage’ I present the evidence that there was a child.

There were rumours on the couple’s two summers in Brighton.

“It is said she is with child,” wrote a Mrs Talbot.

Could this have been the secret reason for their extended holidays in the seaside resort of Brighton?

Was this a good reason for the distraction of the building of the Royal Pavilion there.

The Pope declared the secret marriage valid.

Read my evidence in ‘The Secret Marriage’ in my book of revelations Man Steps Off Planet’.

Writer’s Digest thinks it’s a blockbuster and “an amazing story”.

At the time all of the evidence was destroyed.

This hasn’t stopped speculation as to whether there were children and, more to the point, where are they?

What happened to them.

I very much doubt, however, if anyone found the evidence I have offered in my book.

This was the time of the historic First Fleets to Australia of mostly convicts sent to start a new colony in the antipodes.

Read the full story in my book ‘Man Steps Off Planet’ (click here).

What a perfect opportunity to disappear an unwanted child and an embarrassment to the Prince of Wales.

I have considered, for example, the fortunate timing of a child with the migration to the end of the earth on one of the First Fleets.

On the same morning that the first ships of the First Fleet sailed for Botany Bay (Australia) on 13 May 1787 carrying 737 convicts, the Prince of Wales was discussing his debts with the Prime Minister, William Pitt.

It’s interesting to note that the Second Fleet two-and-a-half years later carried 22 children and one free person.

It’s impossible to identify who the children were.

This can be found in the chapter ‘The Mystery of the Mary Ann’.

But then we also have three secret messages which point to an interesting man, an unsung hero from that time, with many clues to his identity as a possible child of this Royal couple.

His name is Lieutenant James Simmons.

For a time of great significance to us he was Acting Commander of the brig ‘Lady Nelson‘.

Read the chapters ‘The Lady Nelson’, ‘The Lieutenant Without a Past’, and ‘The Sailor King’.

With this ship he sailed the waters around south-eastern Australia founding Hobart and Launceston in Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania).

He developed a close friendship with the colony’s first Chaplain, the Reverend Robert Knopwood.

He fostered friendly relations between the Governor of New South Wales and New Zealand when others before him provoked disaster.

All is revealed in ‘Chief Ti-Pahi & The Maori Episode’.

It’s an interesting read.

One reviewer called it “fun and entertaining”.

I hope you will too.

To order your copy click here.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Neil Walter John Smith started his career as an advertising copywriter working on creative accounts like Volkswagen, Herbert Adams and Clark’s Shoes. He won an award for Adams meat pies commercials in the Best TV Campaign for the year. For 10 years he worked freelance as a one-man creative director for some of Melbourne’s hottest creative shops. He then moved to the country to work as an author of non-fiction books. Today he lives in a small picturesque fishing village across the bay from the city of Melbourne close to his 2 beautiful daughters and 3 adorable granddaughters.

To follow my blog scroll down and click the Follow button.

Illustration by nicobou at Deviantart

“You have discerned an amazing story”.

*SPIRITUAL & PARANORMAL.*

Who was the ghost whose pleas needed to be heard? Was this the secret wife of a British Royal wanting her story to be told 200 years later? What was her message? How can I explain the endless fortunate timing, the lucky appearance of people and places that moved my story along?

What words of wisdom do I offer along the way to explain spiritual and metaphysical events. I invite you to read and enjoy my *fun and entertaining* true story titled ‘Man Steps Off Planet’.

Read of my unplanned and unexpected serendipitous discoveries that led me to people and adventures I had never dreamed I would find. “You have discerned an amazing story,” said Writer’s Digest.

*INSPIRATIONAL EXPERIENCES.*

Here’s how it all began. As I headed for the hills, away from my family, my freelance business now bankrupt, my hopes and dreams, I might just as well have stepped off the planet into another world. I had to learn a new way to live. What can you learn from my experiences? Without any plan, without any guide as to how to survive when broke, I sailed forth on an unexpected adventure that transformed me and my world.

*HISTORY OF EARLY AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND AND UNSUNG HEROES.*

What secrets were uncovered, what historical mysteries revealed, in this unpredictable book about what happened next, full of twists and turns. Hidden evidence was revealed when an innocent ancestry search mixed with 3 mysterious messages each with 3 clues plus the appearance of a real ghost with a critical clue combined to set up an unexpected historical mystery from Regency England 200 years ago.

*ROMANTIC ADVENTURES.*

What life messages, what spiritual wisdom, what historical intrigues did I learn in my untypical fun romantic paranormal historical true mystery world adventure? Read my struggle for survival, the extraordinary events that happened after bankruptcy, the fun and the drama as I describe every moment as it unfolded. This is an adventure for its time. Learn from my amazing story how you, too, can survive and live the good life as if this was another planet. It’s a page turner.

*RAVE REVIEWS.*

“It’s got everything it needs to be a blockbuster: romance, history, the paranormal . . . big stories like this are difficult to tell.” Judge, Writer’s Digest 21st Annual Self-Published Book Awards, USA.

“This is a fun and entertaining manuscript. The characters are fabulous, as is the storyline. I am impressed with your imagination, writing skills and storytelling ability. The readers will truly love this material.” Writers Literary & Publishing Service, USA.

If you would like to learn more about thus unusual non-fiction page-turner click here.

Enjoy.

Neil.

PS. That’s a recent photo of the author visiting a local animal rescue farm.

Unsung Heroes From Aussie Italian Gold Rush Miners to Sailing Ship Mysteries & a Lost British Prince In Aus.

It’s the Gold Rush era of California, New Zealand and southern Australia. They came from the Ticino region in the south of Switzerland and the foothills of the Alps in the north of Italy in the 1850s hoping to strike gold. Many sailed out on borrowed money expecting to strike it rich and make their fortunes in the Central Highlands of Victoria, Australia, where I lived for 5 years. Most didn’t.

But hey, were they unsung heroes who left behind a permanent legacy of Italy in the Aussie bush?

There was a ghost. A clue led me back to a fashionable Catholic widow over 200 years ago in Regency England who secretly married the heir to the British throne, the Prince of Wales. I think it was a legitimate marriage which, if proven by the other clues I uncovered, would have cast serious doubts on events of that time. If there were legitimate children then where are they? Who were they? And how did they change history, if at all?

But hey, was the first born son an unsung hero who was sent secretly to Australia and became the enigmatic Commander of the ‘Lady Nelson’?

And there’s more.

Explore.

Illustrated: The tale of the mutiny on the Bounty remains one of the most intriguing stories of adventure on the high seas more than 200 years after the ill fated voyage that made Captain Bligh and Fletcher Christian legends. But what of the unsung heroes (like the unknown British sailor without a past who became Commander of the ‘Lady Nelson’) who sailed with Bligh on the ‘Bounty’?

Neil.

How Miracles Happen.

I was broke. For 5 years my home was a leaky old caravan parked outside its owner’s home at the end of a dead end street in Hepburn Springs in Victoria’s Central Highlands. I was at a loose end. I started to look into the fascinating stories of the Gold Rush in the area. I found a largely untold history of Swiss-Italian migrants who came out in the 1850s to try their luck on the goldfields. Many stayed on. Fresh pasta was still on the menu at many local restaurants. The local butcher still sold the real Italian bull-boar sausages. Many of the original typical rural Swiss or Italian farmhouses were still working farms, others lay in ruins. I wrote the story and it was published in the local newspaper. The owner of the General Store picked up my story and started a Swiss-Italian Festa with street marches, history displays, even a pasta sauce recipe competition. After 30 years it’s still an annual tourist event in the Central Highlands of Victoria, Australia. ‘Italy In The Aussie Bush’ is chapter 8 of 30 chapters in ‘Man Steps Off Planet’. We don’t need money to make miracles happen.

The Man Who Didn’t Know He Was Prince.

Two hundred years ago the Prince of Wales was in a precarious position. Even his life was in danger. There were reasons. This is my revelation of a legitimate son born from a secret marriage to a Catholic widow. I think they were soul mates but England thought they were trouble.

We have no portraits of him as other famous and even not-so-famous explorers from history do. Has he been a forgotten man, a hero of his time?

Hardly anything is known of him except for his role as Acting Commander of the brig ‘Lady Nelson’.

Could he have been the hitherto unknown father of a legitimate son of the British King George IV from a time when, as the Prince of Wales, he left one mistress after another and then secretly married the Catholic widow and socialite Maria Fitzherbert?

Would Victoria have become Queen had they known about him?

We may never know but, based on the evidence, we can speculate.

In my book ‘Man Steps Off Planet’ I have speculated and reached a shocking conclusion.

Read the evidence I’ve uncovered after extensive research and decide for yourself.

Much of the research has been driven by paranormal events all started by a ghost.

In the end it’s all true (not a novel or a work of fiction).

So who was this unsung hero from over 200 years ago?

He was very active in the story of early British settlement of Australia and New Zealand with a population of mainly convicts.

He understood the native Maroi of New Zealand and fostered harmonious relations between Chief Ti-Pahi and Governor King.

He was in the thick of Australia’s only military coup and was chosen to escort Governor William Bligh back to England to be court marshaled.

There are also heartwarming true stories.

Like when one of his crew fell in love with the Chief’s daughter and stayed behind to marry her.

Or the unbelievable tale of William Buckley, a convict who escaped from a failed settlement near Melbourne 30 years before the city was even founded as “the place for a village”.

He lived with the local aborigines as their leader and was met by the party that sailed from Tasmania to found Melbourne in 1830.

On his many voyages he became friendly with the Reverend Robert Knopwood, the first chaplain of Tasmania, and was heavily involved in the dramatic politics of this early penal colony.

This is only the tip of the iceberg.

You can read how the mystery unfolded for me and my travels around the world chasing clues and searching for evidence to support the little known events surrounding this intriguing historical saga.

Did you enjoy reading this post? Scroll down to follow my blog for future email posts.

Best wishes,

Neil Smith

To read in your browser click here.

To order your copy of the book from the publisher at 10% off click here.

Illustration: ‘Frog Prince’ by YolandaBlazquez on Deviantart.

The Lost Prince of Oz.

Who was this mysterious man without a past, a British seaman who sailed to New South Wales, as Australia was called then, with the notorious William Bligh of ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’ fame?

We have no portraits of him as other famous and even not-so-famous explorers from history do.

Has he been a forgotten man, a hero of his time?

Hardly anything is known of him except for his role as Acting Commander of the brig ‘Lady Nelson’.

Could he have been the hitherto unknown father of a legitimate son of the British King George IV from a time when, as the Prince of Wales, he left one mistress after another and then secretly married the Catholic widow and socialite Maria Fitzherbert?

Would Victoria have become Queen had they known about him?

We may never know but, based on the evidence, we can speculate.

In my book ‘Back to the Wall’ I have speculated and reached a shocking conclusion.

Read the evidence I’ve uncovered after extensive research and decide for yourself.

Much of the research has been driven by paranormal events all started by a ghost.

In the end it’s all true (not a novel or a work of fiction).

So who was this unsung hero from over 200 years ago?

He was very active in the story of early British settlement of Australia and New Zealand with a population of mainly convicts.

He understood the native Maroi of New Zealand and fostered harmonious relations between Chief Ti-Pahi and Governor King.

He was in the thick of Australia’s only military coup and was chosen to escort Governor William Bligh back to England to be court marshaled.

There are also heartwarming true stories.

Like when one of his crew fell in love with the Chief’s daughter and stayed behind to marry her.

Or the unbelievable tale of William Buckley, a convict who escaped from a failed settlement near Melbourne 30 years before the city was even founded as “the place for a village”.

He lived with the local aborigines as their leader and was met by the party that sailed from Tasmania to found Melbourne in 1830.

On his many voyages he became friendly with the Reverend Robert Knopwood, the first chaplain of Tasmania, and was heavily involved in the dramatic politics of this early penal colony.

This is only the tip of the iceberg.

You can read how the mystery unfolded for me and my travels around the world chasing clues and searching for evidence to support the little known events surrounding this intriguing historical saga.

Did you enjoy reading this post? Scroll down to follow my secret blog for future email posts.

Best wishes,

Neil
My Author Website

To read in your browser click here.

To order your copy of the book from the publisher at 10% off click here.

 

 

The Acting Commander Of The ‘Lady Nelson’ Had a Secret. Even He Never Knew What It Was.

Was this a closely guarded secret from over 200 years ago?

Was the Acting Commander of the ‘Lady Nelson’ a legitimate heir to the throne of England in spite of a secret marriage between the Prince of Wales and a Roman Catholic widow (illustrated above)?

Was he secretly placed at a young age into an institution for homeless boys where he would be forgotten?

But then, if the Pope declared the secret marriage a legitimate one, what then of any child from the marriage?

Because of a single clue left by a ghost, yes a ghost, 100 years ago, could his secret identity have been uncovered?

I think it was.

Because it was me who uncovered it.

On 1 December 1786, at the age of about seven, he was given his first official naval appointment (we know this to be a fact because it says so on his official naval record written by himself) as a Lieutenant’s Servant on the ‘Standard’ in Plymouth.

Then 17 years later in the very early days of British settlement of Australia he was chosen ny Governor King to take command of the tall ship ‘Lady Nelson’.

One hot November day just over two hundred years ago in the fledgling convict settlement at Port Jackson, as a midshipman only recently arrived in the colony, he found himself appointed Acting Lieutenant and Commander of HMS ‘Lady Nelson’.

The ship’s previous commander, Lieutenant George Curtoys, had become so ill from unloading cargo in the extreme heat that a replacement was needed on the spot. The man chosen was James Simmons, at first a midshipman on the governor’s own ship then mate on the ‘Lady Nelson’.

The year was 1803. He would have been just twenty-four or twenty-five at the time.

That he was selected in an emergency for an instant promotion to Acting Lieutenant and Commander of the ‘Lady Nelson’ is perhaps the first indication of the emerging qualities of a young man who seems to be one of the forgotten unsung heroes of Australian history. He has an extraordinary story to tell, an adventure of which very few (as far as I know) even today have ever heard, of a man only briefly mentioned, if at all, in the history books.

Midshipman James Simmons had sailed for New South Wales on 20 June 1802 on the ‘Glatton’ as an able seaman midshipman under Captain Colnett. The previous year the ‘Glatton’ had fought with Admiral Nelson in the Battle of Copenhagen under the command of William Bligh, of ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’ fame, with whom James would cross swords later in yet another infamous episode involving Captain Bligh in Australia’s only military coup.

After a sea journey of nine months the ‘Glatton’ arrived at New South Wales in March 1803. The Governor of the colony was Captain Philip Gidley King, the fifth appointment after two previous governors and two acting governors.

King had sailed with the First Fleet under Captain Arthur Phillip. He served as Second Lieutenant on the ‘Sirius’, the flagship of the fleet which arrived in New South Wales on 25 January 1788. Less than two months later King was appointed by Governor Phillip as Commandant of another penal settlement at Norfolk Island, to the north-east of Port Jackson.

Twelve years later, in 1800, he became Governor of New South Wales, replacing Captain John Hunter.

When midshipman James Simmons arrived in March 1803 he was appointed to Governor King’s own ship the ‘Buffalo’.

A lucky break?

Now, just eight months later, on this hot November day, he found himself unofficially and hastily moved to the command of the ‘Lady Nelson’ which was then armed tender to His Majesty’s Ship ‘Buffalo’.

Was this another lucky break or did King single him out for special treatment?

Did he display exceptional qualities even at the age of twenty-four or twenty-five?

What did I find when I set out to follow the clues that emerged after Granny’s ghost’s secret came to light?

Come with me as I learn this man’s 200 year-old secret?

What would the consequences have been had his secret be known at the time?

Read every moment of my adventure in ‘Back to the Wall’.

Best wishes,

Neil

 

 

 

Who was the secret legitimate heir sent to the antipodes 200 years ago?

 

Portrait of  Mrs Maria Fitzherbert (1756-1837), secret wife of George IV (1762-1803)

Was this forgotten man, Acting Commander of the Tall Ship Lady Nelson’  from 1803, a secret legitimate royal heir to the British throne?

I have found convincing evidence that he was.

I’ve written an account of how the evidence unfolded for me, day by exciting day, a story full of unexpected discoveries and endless twists and turns, in my book ‘Back to the Wall’.

When my back was to the wall.

Being an ex advertising copywriter this was a story I simply couldn’t ignore.

Okay, what’s this “amazing story” I have discerned (according to Writer’s Digest*)?

Clues left by secret messages – and a ghost – led me to the ‘Lady Nelson’, one of the sailing ships that arrived in Australia soon after the Third Fleet comprising 11 ships that sailed from England to Australia in 1791 to start a penal settlement on the other side of the world.

And significantly to an enigmatic Commander who, at just 24, took over in an emergency.

Was Lieutenant James Simmons (or Symons)  the legitimate heir sent to the antipodes and out of the way?

Was a secret marriage between the Prince of Wales, King George IV, and a Catholic widow, Maria Fitzherbert,  legal?

The Pope said it was!

Join me as I share every moment of my fun and entertaining romantic world adventure chasing the clues that led me to uncover surprising revelations from my historical research in Australia, Regency England and New Zealand.

It’s an unexpected adventure across five countries and you can share my emotions and the events that emerged as I followed my instincts – always with nothing.

I was broke, bankrupt.

My back was to the wall.

Read my story of survival together with the fun and the drama as I describe every moment as it unfolded.

It’s a blast.

To order your copy now CLICK HERE or from Amazon CLICK HERE.

Best wishes,

Neil

PS. If you found this post interesting scroll down or up to the top of the sidebar and click the FOLLOW button to receive future posts in your email.

* “You have discerned an amazing story. It’s got everything it needs to be a blockbuster: romance, history, the paranormal and the story of a narrator finding his way in the world. Big stories like this are difficult to tell.
The writer has to sift the really important facts from those that don’t keep the story moving. Keeping the reader oriented – and engaged – in a story with twists and turns like this is no small feat either.”Judge, Writer’s Digest 21st Annual Self-Published Book Awards

First Fleets Mystery.

The First Fleet entering Port Jackson (Sydney) January 26, 1788

What untold secrets did they take with them? They sailed from Portsmouth, England, between 1787 and 1791 to an unknown world with a cargo of mainly convicts to start an experiment in self sufficiency in a strange new land on the other side of the planet already inhabited for maybe 80,000 years by the Australian aborigine.

They had nothing except for what they brought with them on sailing ships which, in many cases, were not up to the trip. Nor were many of the passengers. They left behind families and loved ones, for good.

They set out on a long up to 11 month long voyage at sea into the unknown.

They were going for life.

Many died on the voyage.

Only now I have learned of the mystery.

Actually, more than one mystery.

One concerns an all female convict ship the ‘Lady Juliana’.

Another is the ‘Mary Ann’.

Yet another is the ‘Lady Nelson’, not part of the First Fleets arriving in Port Jackson (Sydney) 9 years later.

The biggest mystery of the lot involves the enigmatic Commander of the ‘Lady Nelson’ who took over in an emergency at the age of just 23 or 24.

Who was he, what was his mysterious past and what was his explosive secret?

Was he, I wonder, a legitimate son to Maria Fitzherbert and the Prince of Wales, King George IV?

The evidence is all there in my fun and entertaining romantic historical mystery ‘Back to the Wall’.

To buy now CLICK HERE or on Amazon HERE

In the book, full of twists and turns, you can read how the mystery unfolded for me as I chased the clues across three countries as well as here in Australia and New Zealand.

You’ll read of Australia’s only military coup, of confrontations with the Maori Chief Ti-Pahi, of drama on the High Seas with equipment and men washed overboard, lost anchors and torn sails, of convicts who escaped from early settlements to live with the aborigines, of a secret royal wedding, of a King’s physician banished to the colonies for life because of what he knew, of another little-known mutiny against William Bligh of ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’ fame and of his return to England to face court marshal, and more.

Then there’s the ghost that started this all off. But that’s another story you’ll read in the book.

“You have discerned an amazing story”, said the Judge of the Reader’s Digest 21st Annual Self-Published Book Awards.

It’s a non-stop adventure with twists and turns from cover to cover.

To buy now CLICK HERE or on Amazon HERE

Best wishes

Neil

Living Drama In A 200 Year Old Ship’s Log

Lady Nelson replica

One hot November day just over two hundred years ago in the fledgling convict settlement at Port Jackson, New South Wales (as the east coast of Australia was known), a midshipman only recently arrived in the colony found himself, within the space of eight months, appointed Acting Lieutenant and Commander of HMSLady Nelson’.

The year was 1803, only 15 years after the first of three fleets had arrived from England with a cargo of mostly convicts to establish a new penal colony in New South Wales.

The ship’s previous commander, Lieutenant George Curtoys, had become so ill from unloading cargo in the extreme heat that a replacement was needed on the spot.

The man chosen was James Simmons, at first a midshipman on the governor’s own ship then mate on the ‘Lady Nelson’.

He would have been just twenty-four or twenty-five at the time.

Who was this man, to be singled out for such an important role at such a young age, who received such praise from Governor King?

Most of us have heard of Captain Cook but who has heard of Lieutenant James Simmons? Yet he was heavily involved in Australia’s first military coup, in nurturing harmonious relationships with the indigenous Maori of New Zealand, in establishing Hobart Town and Launceston in Tasmania, and was entrusted with the papers incriminating Governor William Bligh (of ‘Mutiny of the Bounty’ fame) and the return of Bligh himself to London for court marshal, and much more. Read the full story in my book ‘Back to the Wall’.

He was one of the unsung heroes in Australia’s history. You can read his story and his mysterious past in ‘Back to the Wall’ here.

We’re lucky to have a complete transcript of the original log by Ida Lee in her book called The Log of the Lady Nelson’.

Here are the first 2 dramatic months of his command of the ‘Lady Nelson’, unedited, which were already full of real daily life on board a sailing ship facing the unknown and the changing elements.*  (Bold face emphasis is mine.)

LOG OF THE LADY NELSON.

J. SYMONS, Acting Lieutenant and Commander,
Port Jackson, New South Wales.

Sydney to Norfolk Island.

“Monday, 30th April 1804. P.M. Left the Heads. Winds variable. At 4 North
Head of Port Jackson 4 leagues. At 8 the Francis in sight. At 1 A.M. light
breezes and clear. At noon the Francis in company.

“Tuesday, 1st May. In company with the Francis at 5 lost sight of the Francis.

“Friday, 4th May. Fine clear weather: at 5 A.M. saw How’s Islands upon the
weather bow bearing north-north-east distant 5 leagues, bearing north-east 1/2 F. distant 6 leagues. At noon abreast of How’s Island east: distant 3 leagues.

“Saturday, 5th May. Tacked ship and stood in for How’s Island.

“Sunday, 6th May. P.M. Hard squalls of rain. How’s Island west by north 7
leagues.

“Monday, 7th May. P.M. Still blowing hard: at 6 took in the fore-top-sail: at 4
split the mainsail and fore-top-mast stay-sail. At 9 fine pleasant weather:
employed about a new mainsail and bending a fore-top-mast stay-sail.

“Tuesday, 8th May. P.M. Fresh breezes and fine clear weather: at 4 bent new
mainsail: at 10 bore away for New Zealand. Have but 2 casks on board and no
wood.

“Tuesday, 29th May P.M. Cloudy weather with squalls.

“Wednesday, 30th May. Small breezes and fine weather. At 8 A.M. tacked ship:
at 9 split the fore-top-gallant-sail and carried away the main-top-gallant-yard.

“Thursday, 31st May. Moderate winds and cloudy weather. At 7 set up the maintop-gallant yard and set the sail: at 4 A.M. set the lower and fore-top-mast studding sail. At 8 carried away the fore keel pendant and lost the keel, at 10 took in the studding sail.

“Friday, 1st June. Small breezes. At 3 calm, light breezes and fine weather.

“Saturday, 2nd June. Cloudy with squalls of wind and rain. At 5 took in the
main-top-gallant-sail.

“Sunday, 3rd June. P.M. Fresh gales with squalls and bad sea from east-southeast. At 2 saw the Three Kings being south-west by west 3 leagues.

“Monday, 4th June. P.M. Bore away to leeward of the Three Kings and in search of wood and water, sent boat ashore, lost 4 oars overboard. At 7 P.M. the boat came on board with wood.

“Tuesday, 5th June. At 1 made sail close under shore of New Zealand.

“Wednesday, 6th June. Land distant 2 leagues: came to anchor in bay on the east side of New Zealand: went ashore, got some wood and water: at 6 A.M. went on shore again and got some water: at 9 A.M. got under weigh and bore away for the River Thames.

“Thursday, 7th June. P.M. At 6 came to anchor in a small bay to the northward of River Thames. At 7 went on shore, found it a bad landing: could not get water: got some wood. At 9 got under weigh and stood round for the mouth of the River Thames.

“Friday, 8th June. P.M. At 3 came to anchor on the north-west side of River
Thames with the bower anchor in 11 fathoms water and sent boat ashore for
wood and water. At 11 weighed anchor and made sail out of the river on account of the natives being so numerous on board

“Saturday, 9th June. Cloudy weather: all sail set standing along the coast. At 12 A.M. Cavill’s Island bearing north-west distant 10 miles. At daylight made all sail into the bay bearing west: tacked occasionally: at 11 shortened sail and came to in 10 fathoms of water with best bower anchor.

“Sunday, 10th June. Moderate breezes: at 2 sent boat ashore: at 6 returned with wood and water.

“Monday, 11th June. Got some wood and water: at 10 wind north-north-west—
hard squalls of wind and rain.

“Tuesday, 12th June. At 6 the boat came on board with wood and an account that James Cavanagh a prisoner who was sent to cut wood had run into the Brush and that a party of men had been in pursuit of him and could not find him and he was left behind: at 1/4 past 9 a heavy squall: gave the vessel more cable: found her driving in shore very fast: the gale continuing and a heavy sea. Set the top-sail, mainsail and fore-top-stay sail and cut the cable, not being able to get anchor on account of vessel driving so fast: the anchor was lost, 120 fathoms of cable. 1/4 before 10 tacked ship, 10 past 10 began to run between Cavill’s Island and mainland, not being able to work out of the bay, up keel and fore-sail down jib and mainsail. At 11 being quite clear of land shortened sail and hove to.

“Wednesday, 13th June. P.M. At 9 more moderate. Latitude by observation 33
degrees 8 minutes.

“Thursday, 14th June. P.M. Fine clear weather: at 8 took one reef in the maintop-sail and set the stay-sail.

“Friday, 15th June. P.M. Light airs, clear weather: set the fore and main courses: at 9 fresh breezes: took in top-gallant sails: at 10 strong breezes and squally: at 12 A.M. tacked ship and close reefed top-sail, furled the jib and mainsail and sent down top-gallant yards.

“Saturday, 16th June. P.M. Fresh breezes and clear: at 1 got main-top-gallant
yard up and set the sail.

“Sunday, 17th June. Light airs from northward. Set the square mainsail: at 12
tacked ship.

“Monday, 18th June. P.M. Light wind and clear weather: at 8 wore ship.

“Tuesday, 19th June. P.M. At 12 saw Norfolk Island bearing south 1/2 east
distant 7 leagues.

“Wednesday, 20th June. P.M. At 5 Norfolk island distant 6 leagues. At 8 Norfolk Island distant 4 leagues.

“Thursday, 21st June. P.M. At 4 Norfolk Island distant 5 leagues: at sunset
Norfolk Island distant 5 leagues: at 8 Norfolk Island S.E.E. 3 leagues: at 9 fired
3 guns as signal for a boat.

“Friday, 22nd June. P.M. A boat from Cascade boarded us and took on board the officers of New South Wales Corps and baggage and left a pilot on board: at 10 A.M. a boat came and took on shore more baggage belonging to officers of New South Wales Corps.

“Saturday, 23rd June. P.M. Stretched off land to get round to Sydney (Norfolk
Island) but the wind and weather not permitting stretched off and on all night: at 6 close in with the land: at 8 A.M. tacked ship and stood off from the land: at 10A.M. lowered the boat and sent her with second mate and four men on shore.

“Sunday, 24th June. P.M. Stretching off and on the land to the windward. At 8
A.M. a boat arrived from the shore with a cask of pork and biscuits, the 2nd
mate and 2 men brought the account that the boat was lost and that 1 man
George Cockswain was drowned. At 10 loaded the boat with sundries for the
shore but not being able to make good her landing returned to the ship. We stood off for Governor King’s island with the boat towing astern.

PS. To order your copy to read more drama – of all kinds, from cover to cover – CLICK HERE for my Author Page with the publisher or CLICK HERE to order from Amazon.

*’The Log of the Lady Nelson’ by Ida Lee.

You Never Know What You’ll Find In A Ship’s Log

The Lady Nelson (1799)

When you’re a storyteller, you often find all kinds of fabulous human interest stories in sources like a ship’s log previously overlooked by official historians looking for only the bare facts. 

As I learned when I researched the original log books of the ‘Lady Nelson’.

“The logbooks of the Lady Nelson bear witness to the leading part played by one small British ship in the discovery of a great continent,” says author Ida Lee in the introduction to her book which preserves the ship’s original log books. “They show how closely, from the date of her first coming to Sydney in 1800 until her capture by pirates off the island of Baba in 1825, this little brig was identified with the colonisation and development of Australia.”

-Capture by pirates?

-The violent end to ‘The Lady Nelson’ and the discovery of her charred remains.

-The heartwarming story of a crew member falling in love with a New Zealand Maori Chief’s daughter, separated by a well-meaning ship’s captain and their eventual happy reunion.

-Confrontation with the hostile Maori Chief Ti-Pahi.

-Building of the first house to be constructed in New Zealand by the crew of ‘The Lady Nelson’.

-The rescue of an early settlement that failed to find the site where Melbourne was founded 30 years later.

-A vivid account of losses overboard during wild seas where, in 1998, six lives were lost from rather more sophisticated craft in the annual Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.

-A tense stand-off with the Spanish ship ‘Estramina’ and her subsequent surrender.

-How I uncovered an unsung hero from the days of sailing ships and adventures on the High seas who, at just 24 or 25, took command of ‘The Lady Nelson’.

-The part played by the ship in Australia’s only military coup involving William Bligh of Mutiny on the Bounty’  fame – another mutiny if you like.

These are just a few of the many dramatic stories I found in the logs books of the tiny brig HMS ‘Lady Nelson’.

They are only a small part of my bigger story, as Writer’s Digest said, “You have discerned an amazing story” and “the readers will truly love this material.”

This is an easy to read, hard to put down non-fiction book that reads like fiction. Order your copy now and read for yourself these amazing stories within a bigger even more amazing story.

If you enjoy reading real short stories in a bigger true mystery CLICK HERE (publisher) or CLICK HERE (Amazon)

Happy reading

Neil

Reference:The Logbooks of the Lady Nelson’ by Ida Lee, published by Grafton & Co, London, 1915.