• Full Name:
    Dr Henry Ridewood Madden
  • Role:
    Registered practitioner
  • Occupation/s:
    Homœopathic physician
  • State:
  • Date first identified using homoeopathy in Australia:
[1819 – 1884]

Obtained his medical qualifications (LSA, 1838 and MD 1839) in Edinburgh. He was Member of the Hahnemann Medical Society (on the committee) He was also on the committee for the Association for the Protection of Homœopathic Students and Practitioners.


In 1851 he was practising at 76 Grand Parade, Brighton, Sussex. By 1853 his practice was at 10 Pavilion Pde, Brighton, where he was physician to the Brighton Homœopathic Dispensary. This was located at 6 Prince Albert Street, established in 1844.


He had several children while he was in Scotland, and several more in Brighton. He was aged 41 when he married Flora McDonald aged 29, in June 1859. They then had 4 children (one during their stay in Melbourne), making a total of 10 children in total.


He and his family arrived in Melbourne in July 1863. The Argus newspaper of 8 August 1863 reported that he was on a recruiting tour in Victoria. He was recorded as having addresses in St Kilda and at 120 Collins Street East.


His first address in St Kilda was in Balaclava Road, St Kilda.


                         "Marlton" - Dr Madden's home in St Kilda, Melbourne.

                      (Now part of St Michael's Church of England Grammar School)

                                                         Photo courtesy of Peter Torokfalvy

By April 1864, however, he had purchased another property in St Kilda – a large 7 acre property with frontage on to Wellington Street. The house and property were called “Marlton”, and he proceeded to advertise for tenders to make major enhancements to it. By the time he sold it in 1866, it had 7 bedrooms, and a spacious drawing room and dining room, a wine cellar, a double coachhouse and three-stalled stable, hen houses, cow house, piggery, a gardener’s propagating house, an orchard, and a “pleasure garden” and croquet ground. The 2 acre paddock was sown with English grass and had a large waterhole which provided  “a never-failing supply of water”. The Yan Yean water was also laid on to all parts of the house and grounds. The sales advertisement stated that “no expense has been spared by Dr Madden in the building and completion of the property, and apart from the necessary requirements of a family residence, there is provided every luxury and convenience that could be found in any English mansion.” “From the upper windows there is a most commanding view of all the surrounding country.” The land has since been subdivided, but the house survives as Marlton, on Marlton Crescent, off Wellington Road. For a time it was the St Kilda Grammar School, but is now part of the St Michael’s Church of England Girls’ Grammar School, which took ownership in 1895.


During July 1864 there were several articles in The Argus which reported Dr Madden defending homœopathy.


He was one of the two practitioners who attended Mr Richard Heales, who was Premier of Victoria, towards the end of his life. (The other practitioner was an allopath.) At the funeral procession, both Dr Madden and the allopathic doctor took pride of place towards the front of the procession.


The 1865 edition of Sands and McDougall’s Melbourne and Suburban Directory listed him as being at 103 Collins street East*, between Russell Street and Stephen Street (now Exhibition Street), at the same address as Dr S.R. Robinson, another homœopath. He was also listed at Wellington St, St Kilda.


For a short period before his departure for England in February 1866, he practised from 90 Collins Street East – the premises of the homœopathic pharmacy of Gould and Martin.


Madden had several publications including: Homœopathy viewed in connection with medical reform (1846), and contributed several papers to the British Journal of Homœopathy. His Contraria Contrariis (1867) was reprinted from the British Journal of Homœopath).


By 1881 the English census recorded that he was in Devon, listed as MD not practising. He died in 1884, at Bath. His wife died in 1911 in Paddington.


© Barbara Armstrong

  • Created:
    Sunday, 01 March 2009
  • Last modified:
    Sunday, 10 August 2014