Correspondence [Letter relating to the laying of the foundation stone for the Maitland Benevolent Asylum]

Production date
Jan 1846
About this object
Edward Denny Day (1801-1876) is a significant public figure in the early days of colonial Maitland. He was police magistrate in Maitland in the late 1830s, the 1840s and from 1858 to 1869. He was commissioner, Court of Requests from 1841 and of insolvent estates from 1842. He was also active in public life. As well, Day is associated with the prosecution of the men responsible for the Myall Creek massacre in 1838, and for the arrest of the ‘Jewboy bushrangers’ led by Edward Davis in 1840.
The letters and documents in the Edward Denny Day collection connect Day to specific events and services in Maitland and district. They also provide some documentation on the nature of the evolving colonial judicial system.
This letter relates to laying the foundation stone for the Maitland Benevolent Asylum. rIt includes a response from Watson Parker, Private Secretary, Government House, advising the Governor is unavailable and proposing E D Day ‘would perform the ceremony for me’. The Maitland Benevolent Asylum was the forerunner to the Maitland Hospital. The foundation stone referred to here was the foundation stone for the first building erected on the Campbell’s Hill site that the Maitland Hospital occupied from 1849 to January 2022.

Currently on loan to Maitland Libraries, is a small but significant digital collection of E.D. Day-related documents, handwritten notes and articles.
Permission must be sought for access to these documents for study or research purposes. Please contact Maitland Libraries for further information. (
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Object detail

The Library’s Edward Denny Day Collection is significant for its documentation of aspects of the professional, public and private life of a well-known and respected public figure in Maitland’s colonial history. Complemented by other public collections of items relating to E. D. Day, the Library’s collection has the potential to add details to understanding the different capacities in which Day contributed and to the networks and judicial system within which he worked. The items are provenanced to Day’s descendants, and individual items are complete although the condition and fragility of individual items vary.

Statement of Significance completed by Janis Wilton, 2022
Collection type
Ink on paper
36.5 x 42.5cm
Credit line
Acquired by Maitland Libraries, 2019.
Accession number


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