John Chick was born in Launceston on 19 Jun 1843 to William Chick (1803-1875) and his wife Elizabeth Watts (1806-1882). John was christened at St John's Anglican Church on 12 Jul 1843. His father William had been a bootmaker and bridle cutter and had a shop in Bacchus Street, Hoxton, London. He was married with two children when he was convicted of 'breaking into a warehouse' and was transported to Van Diemen's Land on the William Miles in 1828. His wife came out to join him and they had several more children in Launceston, including John, who is remarkably similar to his father's description.
John was a hay and corn merchant and was popular as a violinist, with his services often in demand. He played the violin in the Exhibition Orchestra in 1891-92. He was also a member of the St John's Church choir for a long period. John first married on 3 Mar 1870 to Sarah Rouse at St John's. They had six children between 1870 and 1878: Elizabeth, Lilian, Alice, Mervyn, Arthur and Elizabeth. All except Arthur John (1877-1927) died when young. The first four children died from scarlet fever over a few days in Sep-Oct 1876. His wife Sarah died aged 31 on 4 Jan 1879 and Isabel died on 12 Jan 1879 aged 3 months.
John married 21-year-old Ada Emily Davis on 29 Mar 1880 at St John's Church. They had nine children between 1881 and 1901, Harold, Edith, Ada, Harry, Miriam, Hilda, Myra, Alice and Marion, with six daughters surviving to adulthood. John died at his residence 80 Balfour Street, Launceston, on 3 Aug 1925 aged 82. Ada died on 1 Sep 1940 aged 81 and was buried next to her husband at the Carr Villa Cemetery in Section B9 No. 208.
Of John's 15 children, eight died young. There was a marble headstone in the Cypress Street Cemetery in memory of his first wife and all those children under the text 'We shall meet to part no more'.