This full length lobster tail bustle was owned and worn by Alice Frances Henty, the daughter of Francis Henty and Mary Ann (Lawrence) Henty. Bustles of this form date from the mid-1860s however this example probably dates from the mid 1870s, and perhaps from before her marriage to John Hindson in 1876. Alice's father, Francis Henty, was the youngest son of Thomas Henty, who with his family, their retainers and property moved to the Australian colonies between 1829 and 1832. In 1834, Francis’ older brother, Edward, sailed from Launceston in Van Diemen’s Land to what was to become Portland in the western part of Port Phillip District [Victoria]. Francis, together with the first flock of Merino sheep [in Victoria], followed some months later. The first and second generations of the Henty family established vast pastoral properties in the Western part of the Port Phillip District. Francis Henty managed ‘Merino Downs’ near Casterton, while also living in his retirement at ‘Field Place' in Kew. Alice (Henty) Hindson's lobster tail bustle, together with other items in the ‘Henty Collection’, was donated by Ann James, a descendant of Francis and Mary Ann Henty, in 2023.
This 'bustle' is part of the 'Henty Collection'. The collection is aesthetically significant in that it reveals the fashion trends and the social function of garments owned by prosperous women of European descent in the period. The items are historically significant due to their ownership by women in the Henty family, who with their husbands, and or parents, were among the first European settlers in Victoria. The items have an established chain of provenance, are often rare survivors of colonial clothing, and enable researchers to interpret the fashions worn by notable Australian women during the 1840s to the 1880s.
An exceptionally rare and fine floor length 'lobster tail' bustle that belonged to and was worn by Alice Frances Henty (1852-1932); possibly worn with her two-piece pink silk gown but also with other dresses that she owned which required a bustle of this shape. The outer fabric of the bustle is of polished cotton with steel hoops and ties at the front. The lower four hoops have flounces of the same fabric. The bustle contains 12 hoops, crossed nearer the wist and semi-circular for the remainder of the undergarment.
Girth - Waist 660
Vertical - Front waist to hem 914, Back waist to hem 965.
fashion -- 1870s, alice frances (henty) hindson, women's clothing, bustles, underwear