VINING Jay Joseph (1850-1932)

The Illawarra Museum collection includes a shop ledger that lists the goods sold to a variety of customers and the prices they paid from 1901 to 1906.  The ledger was maintained by J J Vining Complete House Furnisher. Merchant Tailor. Milk Cans, Tanks, Stoves. Wollongong & Dapto.

Jay Joseph Vining arrived in Sydney aboard the Trevelyan on 31 December 1877 aged 26. Jay was known by his middle name, Joseph, and came from Yorkshire. According to his death certificate, his parents were William and Elizabeth.

He worked initially in Sydney, the exact whereabouts is unknown.  In 1907, Vinging married Miss Martha Heininger from Albion Park and on 1 December 1909 their only child, William Joseph, was born.  

He was listed as a tinsmith of Dapto featured on the electoral rolls From 1903 to 1907.  His occupation was listed in the Sands Sydney and New South Wales Directory as the proprietor of furniture warehouses in Dapto and another in upper Crown St, Wollongong. From 1928 to 1932, his entry showed his listing as a plumber. The Vining shop was on the western side of the Princes Highway between Bong Bong Rd and MacCabe Street opposite the showground.

The first mention of Jay Joseph Vining in the Illawarra Mercury was in July 1894 when he was noted as participating in a debate on ‘Freetrade v Protectionism’.  His name appeared regularly from then in connection with the Dapto Agricultural and Horticultural Society, Dapto Debating Society and Dapto Progress Committee. 

Jay Joseph died on 6 February 1932 and was buried in the cemetery of St Luke’s Church at Brownsville.  The business was sold after Joseph’s death to Fred Nunan.

Mr. Fred Nunan, of Dapto, advertises in this issue that he has taken over the plumbing and tinsmithing shop of the late J. J. Vining, of Dapto, and is prepared to give prompt attention to all orders, with workmanship guaranteed. 
South Coast Times. 9 Dec 1932 p10

Jay Joseph’s obituary summed up his long life and his connection with Dapto:  

The death occurred on Saturday evening at the advanced age of 82 years of Mr. Joseph Vining, who for such a lengthy period has been associated with Dapto, and who for a lengthy period has been a sufferer from serious heart trouble. A native of Yorkshire, he was a striking example of how by initiative and industrious application a person may win out to a competency, for when as a young man, he entered Dapto he was carrying a swag and his trade equipment comprised chiefly a soldiering iron — his capital a pair of willing hands — yet finding plenty of repair work to his hand which was carried out to the satisfaction of all concerned, he had soon built up a connection of value. Seeing scope for expansion of his activities it was soon necessary for him to permanently establish himself in the town where in his tinsmithing business he carried on an extensive manufacture of milk cans for district farmers and later established the general hardware store with which he has been associated right to to his decease, although of late, due to his ill health, had not been able to play an active part.  The late Mr. Vining, who was held in high esteem as a citizen, was married to Miss Martha Heininger-a member of the well-known district family and in addition to his widow, with whom there is general sympathy is also survived by an only son, William. The interment was a private funeral at St. Luke's on Monday morning.
South Coast Times. 12 February 1932 p14

Probate on his estate was granted on 18 April 1932 and was assessed as £2,667 with death duties of £66.13.6.

The Late J. J. Vining. — In connection with the report in regard to the death of Mr. J. J. Vining, as regards his settlement in Dapto, which was based on information of a lengthy resident of the district we are informed' that it was incorrect that he carried a swag on arrival but what actually happened was that the late Mr Vining, who was a skilled tradesman, and had conducted business in the city prior to engaging in employment in a South Coast town, found difficulty in receiving his remuneration, so seeking a suitable location to again embark in business on his own. account, came to Dapto. with that definite object and established that business which made such a remarkably successful progress. 
South Coast Times 26th Feb 1932 p13



There is a gap in evidence within the life of Jay Vining. A Joseph Vining was often featured in newspapers across New South Wales. 
A Joseph Vining, grocer of Botany Rd Waterloo, petitioned for insolvency in 1882 which was granted in March of the following year.
In 1887, a Joseph Vining was charged with setting fire to his grocery shop at Newtown in order to defraud the Fire Insurance Company. He was arrested and charged. The case was reported in the newspapers across New South Wales.
He went to trial on 21 November 1887 and sentenced to 6 years penal servitude on 18 January 1888.

It is difficult to know if Jay Joseph Vining of Dapto and the Joseph Vining of Sydney were the same person. According to the Government Gazette of 11 May 1892, reported that Joseph Vining was released from gaol by remission.  He was described as a grocer, born in England in 1861. He was 5 feet 9 and a half inches tall with brown hair and grey eyes.  Jay Joseph Vining was born about 1850 which would make him about ten years older that Vining the arsonist.If he was the same Vining, he worked quickly to become part of the local community and led the life of a good citizen for the rest of his days.

Martha Vining was born in 1868, the daughter of Conrad Heininger (1840-1906) and Margaret Howes (1841-1919).  Her parents married in 1864 in Wollongong.  Martha was one of 10 children born to Conrad and Margaret.  Martha died on 29 August 1942 aged 73 and was buried in the West Dapto Roman Catholic cemetery. Probate on her estate was granted and assessed at £2,837.

A well-known and esteemed resident of Dapto, Mrs. Martha Vining, aged 73 years, died on Saturday last. She was the relict of the late Joseph Vining. and beloved mother of William (Dapto). Deceased was the second daughter of the late Conrad Heininger, of Dapto. The remains were interred on Sunday in the Catholic cemetery, West Dapto, Rev. Father Grealy officiating. Mr. A. E. Simpson of Dapto and Wollongong, directed the funeral arrangements.
South Coast Times. 4 September 1942. p7

William enlisted in World War 2 and his service number was 132729.  His next of kin was his uncle, Conrad Heininger.  William died 7 June 2002 aged 92 and was buried next to his mother. He lived in the family home variously numbered 207 and 350 Princes Highway, Dapto until his death. The electoral rolls from 1931 to 1980 list his occupation as shop hand.


West of the Water East of the Line : Dapto and Oral History. Wayne Davis (ed). Department of Technical and Further Education, 1987


Dapto - First appearance in newspapers
South Coast Times and Wollongong Argus, Sat 13 Jan 1900

Dapto - Obituary
South Coast Times and Wollonong Argus, Fri 12 Feb 1932|||l-state=New+South+Wales|||l-year=1932|||l-title=691

South Coast Times and Wollonong Argus, Fri 12 Feb 1932|||anyWords|||notWords|||requestHandler|||l-word=*ignore*%7C*ignore*|||sortby|||l-state=New+South+Wales|||l-title=691

Dapto - Fred Nunan
South Coast Times and Wollonong Argus, Fri 9 Dec 1932|||l-state=New+South+Wales|||l-title=691

Week by Week - Matha's Obituary 
South Coast Times and Wollonong Argus, Fri 4 Sep 1942|||l-title=691|||l-decade=194

Insolvency Court
The Sydney Morning Herald, Wed 14 Mar 1882|||dateTo=1883-03-14|||l-advstate=New+South+Wales

Law Report - Insolvency Court
The Sydney Morning Herald, Wed 12 Apr 1882|||dateTo=1883-03-14|||l-advstate=New+South+Wales

Central Criminal Court - Monday
The Daily Telegraph, Tues 22 Nov 1887|||l-category=Article|||l-year=1887

Central Criminal Court - Tuesday
The Sydney Morning Hearld, Wed 23 Nov 1887|||l-category=Article|||l-year=1887

Fire in Newtown
Evening News, Thurs 13 Oct 1887|||l-category=Article|||l-year=1887

Central Criminal Court - Monday
The Sydney Morning Herald, Tues 22 Nov 1887|||l-category=Article|||l-year=1887

J.Moore August 2017