Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Sir Thomas Mitchell Inn


The Sir Thomas Mitchell Inn, situated in George Street Singleton was named for Surveyor-General Sir Thomas Mitchell.

Alexander Munro

Alexander Munro was born in Ardessier, Invernesshire in 1812. He arrived in the colony in 1831 and commenced work as a teamster and carrier, conveying wool, produce etc from the Plains to the wharf at Morpeth and bringing back stores and supplies for the settlers. He soon amassed sufficient capital to launch out as Innkeeper of the Sir Thomas Mitchell Inn.

Alexander Munro was granted a publican's licence for the Sir Thomas Mitchell in the years 1842 - 1846. [5]

In 1847 he was granted a licence for the Governor Bourke Hotel, later Governor Fitzroy Hotel and George Ledingham was granted the licence for the Sir Thomas Mitchell Inn.

George Ledingham

George Ledingham held the licence for the Sir Thomas Mitchell Inn in the years 1847 and 1848. A Dinner was held in the room at the rear of Ledingham's Surveyor General Inn in honour of Sir Charles Fitzroy on his visit to the district in 1847. The room was very neatly fitted up for the occasion with festoons and devices in flowers and evergreens. The dinner was 'got up in very good style; the wines were of excellent quality and in fact the whole affair seemed to give the greatest satisfaction'. [1]

George Ledingham's wife died aged 25 in March 1849 at Sir Thomas Mitchell Inn[2]

Alexander Munro

Alexander Munro, former proprietor of the Governor Fitzroy Inn erected a fine new building in George Street, Singleton

Early in 1850 he secured the licence of the old Sir Thomas L. Mitchell Inn and having erected the new and substantial building adjoining, he transferred the licence to the new house which was called the Caledonian Hotel. This house contained four parlors, four bedrooms, bar and tap room on the ground floor and on the second floor eight bedrooms and a saloon which was considered the largest saloon out of Sydney. There was also another room that was used by the Oddfellows as a Lodge room. In addition the hotel was fitted with a large balcony and a verandah.

In the early fifties the up country mail coaches used to leave from the Caledonian. [3]

In 1851 Alexander Munro leased the hotel to Richard Alcorn and devoted himself extensively to pastoral pursuits, taking up large holdings on the Liverpool Plains. In the late fifties, convinced that viticulture would become one of the principal industries of the Hunter district, he secured a portion of the Kelso estate near Singleton and established there the Bebeah Vineyard. He added to the vineyard by purchasing the adjoining Greenwood Vineyard. He was the first Mayor elected in Singleton and filled that position for four years 1866, 1867, 1868 and 1869.

Alexander Munro died in March 1889 at his residence Ardessier House, Singleton.[4]

William Winch

William Winch was landlord of the Caledonian Hotel in 1862.

Notes and Links

George Ledingham later held the licence for the Sir Thomas Mitchell Inn located at the Namoi River.


[1] Maitland Mercury 10 February 1847

[2] Maitland Mercury 31 March 1849

[3] Singleton Argus (NSW : 1880 - 1954) Sat 19 May 1928

[4] The Voice of the North (NSW : 1918 - 1933) Wed 10 Feb 1932

[5] State Archives NSW; Series: 14401; Item: [4/79, 4/81]; Reel: 5061 Information New South Wales, Australia, Certificates for Publicans' Licences