The convict ship Genral Hewitt
The Kings Arms Inn, photographed in 1886 when it was known as The Club Hotel
Thomas Hammond also ran a boarding school known as the Campbelltown Academy or Clari Montes Academy during the 1830s and 40s. The school operated at Clari Montes and was still in existence in December 1844. In promoting his school, Hammond pushed its healthy and retired situation, the extent of the grounds that allowed pupils to exercise and entertain themselves. Fresh fruit and vegetables and dairy produce were in abundance for the pupils to take advantage of. Three teachers were employed, high fees were charged, but the school proved unprofitable.
Thomas was often writing to Sydney newspapers about various causes. In 1835 he was involved in a public stoush with Dr William Kenny over his underpayment for the doctor's services for attending to his family. Kenny's extraordinary advertisement in the Sydney Gazette was meant with equally frank language from Hammond in the following issue. Thomas also regularly wrote to the Government, pushing for the growth and improvement of the town.
We have a physical description of Thomas Hammond provided by local historian J.P. McGuanne in his Centenary of Campbelltown in 1920. "He was tall, this, slimly built; his thinish lips seemed responsive to inward jokes, which he occasionally expressed."
Thomas Hammond lived out his days at Clari Montes (sometimes known as Claremont) where he died in 1876. Despite his convict past, he was described as a "Gentleman" in the burial register. Hammond Place, Campbelltown was named in his honour.
There are not many physical reminders left of Thomas Hammond's days in Campbelltown. The King's Arms on the corner of Cordeaux and Queen Streets has long gone, replaced with today's City Hotel. Clari Montes is also long gone- it's house, orchards and grapevines obliterated by urban development. The property, I believe, was in the vicinity of today's new suburb of Macarthur Heights. Parish maps support this claim. The Thomson family of St Andrews ran a dairy farm on the site in the twentieth century. Even his gravestone appears to have disappeared. Thomas was buried in St Peter's Cemetery. The grave is today unmarked, although a number of sources refer to a marker in the past. He is buried in Section A, Row M, number 2.
FOWLER, Verlie 1983
A Stroll through St Peter's Churchyard
LISTON, Carol 1988
Campbelltown: The Bicentennial History
HOLMES, Marie 2012
A Scrapbook of History: stories of the Macarthur District
McGuanne, J.P. 1920
A Century of Campbelltown