Copied from the Great Lakes Advocate web site dated July 3, 2013:
"HARRIET Cape Godwin was the first white child born at Cape Hawke (Forster) on June 17, 1863.
To mark 150 years since her parents George and Mary Godwin settled in Cape Hawke, the Godwin clan will be holding a reunion at the Pacific Palms Recreation Club later this year.
Descendent of George and Mary, Gwen Smyth of Bulahdelah is taking the opportunity, on this anniversary of Harriet’s birth, to detail some of the history of how the family came to settle in the area.
“Much has been written by various individuals about the early settlement of Cape Hawke – Minimbah – Forster as it was finally named after William Forster, Secretary of Lands, in the 1871 map of the village of Forster by John Hall, surveyor,” she wrote in a letter to the Advocate.
“While much written about how the area developed is real enough some details about dates and personalities are not supported by details of recorded births, deaths and marriages.”
Mrs Smyth said the difficulty then came in correcting information, as these facts were often replicated in later writings about the area.
“My particular interest is of course in the family of George Garlick Godwin, who was my great grandfather,” she said.
George Godwin left Kincumber, Brisbane Waters, in late 1862 (a date Mrs Smyth said has been mistakenly recorded as 1856 in some sources) with his wife Many Ann and their five children: Nathaniel (9), Thomas Henry (8), Elizabeth Hillier (5), Mary Ann (3) and George Price (1). They travelled by dray, pulled by six bullocks, with all their possessions, two saddle horses and five head of cattle. They used defined roads to Raymond Terrace, then Booral, and took off from the defined tracks to Bulahdelah.
“Here one of the cows calved, a valuable addition to their stock, and was given special room in the dray for the journey ahead,” Mrs Smyth said.
From Bulahdelah, the family had to cut their own trail through virgin bush to Cape Hawke (Forster). On arrival, George Godwin quickly built a home at the spot where Little Street turns into Mark Street. This spot was marked with a pioneer’s plaque on a monument erected in 1963 during Forster-Tuncurry’s centenary celebrations.
Mrs Smyth said references to George Godwin can be found on the electoral roll of the district of Williams (1869/70). George Godwin is listed in Cape Hawke as having freehold, and being qualified to vote for the electoral district of the Lower Hunter.
Six more children followed Harriet’s birth at Cape Hawke: Robert John (1865), Mathew Mark (1867), Luke John (1869), Martha Susan (1870), James Adolphus (1871), and Emma Florence (1873).
When the Forster school opened on October 19, 1871, among the names of the children enrolled were Elizabeth Godwin (14), Mary Ann Godwin (12), George Godwin (10), Harriet Godwin (7), and Robert Godwin (5).
George Garlick Godwin selected land on the shores of Smiths Lake (a map shows 40 acres), on June 3, 1879, in the name of George Godwin Snr.
More Godwin children were baptised in the Stroud Parish: Lillias Jane (1895), Hannah Maria (1877) and Emily Grace, who was born at Smiths Lake on July 23, 1883.
George and Mary Godwin had 15 children, and only one child, Mathew Mark, died in infancy."