Also writes as: John Newcome ; An Old Hand
Born: Established: 12 Mar 1812 Herefordshire
George Hamilton came from a 'good old Herefordshire family', and served in the British Navy, which he joined as a midshipman, before settling in Sydney. He was a pioneer in transporting cattle overland from Port Phillip, arriving in Adelaide on 1st October 1839 and racing in an Adelaide race-meeting that same afternoon. He was later described as 'a fine type of the bold and dashing bushman of the colony's early days' (Obituary, Adelaide Observer 4 August 1883, p. 32). Appointed second clerk in the Colonial Treasury in 1848, he later went on to have the management of the Bullion Office. He joined the police force in 1853, and was Commissioner of Police 1867-1882. His love and knowledge of horses and their handling enabled him to raise the standard of the mounted police force, and he wrote two light-hearted books on the relevance of the horse in Australia; The Horse : Its Treatment in Australia (1864) and An Appeal for the Horse (1866). At the time of his death he was an extra Aide-de-Camp to the Governor.
Hamilton was instrumental in founding the prestigious Adelaide Club, and it was from there that his funeral cortege, accompanied by a mounted police escort, left for his burial at the West terrace cemetery.
A poet, artist and art critic, Hamilton exhibited at the SA Art Exhibition of 1847, illustrated his own work, and also contributed artwork to monographs written by Sir George Grey. Five of his drawings were engraved for Eyre's Journals of Discovery into Central Australia. He owned his own lithographic press and made prints from his drawings which probably made him the first printmaker in South Australia.