Sunday, February 27, 2011

Someone's Ancestor Sunday - Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) Photo Album - Part 3

This is another unnamed, unknown photograph from the photograph album of my great great grandmother Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) of Heathcote, Victoria, Australia. 

A photograph of an unknown young man from Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) Photo Album. c1880s/1890s.

This photograph is a Carte de visite with a red outline around the photograph and rounded corners. 
The photograph has a red
 outline and rounded corners 

There is no writing on the front of the photograph. Writing on the back of the photograph indicates the name and location of the photographer.

The back of the photograph indicates that the photographer was:
"Royal Portrait Studio, Narrandera. F.F. Jennings, Proprietor."
The other writing states: "Copies always obtainable by forwarding Name and Address."

A search of the New South Wales Births, Deaths and Marriages Indexes Online show that there were indeed some Hehirs in the Narrandera District. However, I only searched for the exact spelling 'Hehir'. 

Mabel M. Hehir, the daughter of Mary A. C. Hehir was born in the Narrandera district in 1906 (Reg. No. 16098/1906). 

Ellen Hehir, daughter of John and Mary Hehir, died in the Narrandera district in 1895 (Reg. No. 5561/1895).   
Michael Hehir, son of John and Mary Hehir, died in the Narrandera district in 1897 (Reg. No. 5561/1897 - yes, the registration numbers are the same, just two years apart!)
John Hehir, son of Patrick and Mary Hehir, died in the Narrandera district in 1916 (Reg. No. 18330/1916). Could this John possibly be John, father of the above mentioned Ellen and Michael?

Mary Hehir married James Lee in the Narrandera district in 1911 (Reg. No. 13887/1911)
James H. Hehir married Vera M. Trethewey in the Narrandera district in 1913 (Reg. No. 15691/1913).
John J. Hehir married Sylvia C. Tretheway in the Narrandera district in 1915 (Reg. No. 2313/1915)

Again, I did not search for other variations of Hehir. It is also important to remember that this photograph may be of someone with a surname other than Hehir. 

A search on the National Library of Australia's digitised newspaper collection on Trove has showed that there were Hehirs in Ganmain, Leeton, Lockhart, Urana, Wagga Wagga and other areas in the Riverina. If anyone has any Hehirs (or variations of this surname) in their family tree from these areas, please contact me! Any help identifying this photograph is appreciated. Thanks. 

Copyright © 2011 Australian Genealogy Journeys.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Someone's Ancestor Sunday - Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) Photo Album - Part 2

Last week I wrote a blog post Someone's Ancestor Sunday - Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) Photo Album - Part 1. Today I am posting the first of the unknown unnamed photographs from Susan's album. Susan (1833-1921) lived at Heathcote, Victoria

Photograph of an unknown young man from Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) Photograph Album. c1880s/1890s. No writing or markings on the back. Writing at the bottom of the card: "Yeoman Co. Bridge St., Ballarat." Type of Photograph: Cabinet Card

Any information that could help identify this photograph would be most helpful. Thanks.
Copyright © 2011 Australian Genealogy Journeys.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Someone's Ancestor Sunday - Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) Photo Album - Part 1

A collage of photographs from the old album.
As I mentioned in my previous blog post Please don't throw it person's trash is another's treasure (26 Nov. 2010) 

"Recently an old photograph album has come into the possession of my Mum and I. The cousin who gave it to us didn't know anyone in the photos and told us we could throw it out if we wanted. One look at the album and Mum and I are sure the photographs show relatives of my great great grandmother Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) who immigrated to Australia from Killow, Clareabbey, County Clare, Ireland. The photos appear to date from the 1880s/1890s."

Mary Ellen Blain (nee Hehir) (1865-1952) c1880s.
Photograph by Imperial, 109 Elizabeth St, Melbourne.
Only one photograph from the album has since been identified - she is Mary Ellen Blain (nee Hehir) (1865-1952) daughter of Patrick and Margaret (nee Moloney) Hehir, Grand daughter of Patrick and Bridget (nee O'Neill) Hehir of Killow, Clareabbey, County Clare. It is believed that Patrick Hehir was probably a brother of Timothy Hehir (My 3rd Great Grandfather, Susan's father). Timothy is possibly Thaddeus Hehir mentioned in the Griffiths Valuations in 1855

Timothy Hehir was married to Ann McMahon (it is believed she died during the Great Famine) so the photographs in Susan's album could possibly relate to McMahon relatives as well as to Hehirs. 

Searches on Ancestry, Trove and Australian Births, Deaths and Marriages Indexes have revealed that there were a lot of Hehir/O'Hehir/Hair/O'Hair/Heir/O'Heir/Haire/O'Haire/Hare/O'Hare (and variations, I think this must be the surname in my family tree with the most variations!) who came to Australia, with many from County Clare. Those Australian Hehirs I have found online who have photographs sometimes have a family resemblance - so chances are they may have been related back in Ireland! It is known that some Hehirs probably related to Susan (other descendants of Patrick Hehir and Bridget O'Neill mentioned above) went to the USA, so I am interested in hearing from anyone across the world who might see even a hint of a family resemblance!  

My Great Great Grandmother Susan Ellis (nee Hehir) can be seen on my blog banner - she is second from the left. 

Over the coming Sundays I will feature one unnamed unknown photograph from Susan's album per week. Hopefully I can solve a few mysteries with a little help from other genealogists. 

(Sources available on request).

Further reading:
Copyright © 2011 Australian Genealogy Journeys.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Waitangi Day 2011 - My Ancestors Gold Rush to New Zealand - Gilmore, Fullerton, Joyce, Mulhall

New Zealand topographic map
New Zealand
This is my contribution to the Waitangi Day Blog Challenge initiated by Seonaid at Hunting Ancestors. February 6th, Waitangi Day, is New Zealand's national day. The blog challenge is to write about your early New Zealand ancestors. 

Several of my ancestors spent some time across the Tasman Sea in New Zealand. As far as I am aware none of them married or had children there, so the amount of genealogical evidence that I can glean about their time in New Zealand is, unfortunately, quite limited. 

William Gilmore
My Great Great Grandfather William Kenneth Gilmore was born c1839 at Tullymore, County Down, Ireland, the son of William Gilmore and Margaret Gilmore. 

William embarked from Liverpool on the ship Peter Maxwell on 18 April 1859 and arrived in Melbourne in July 1859 (a voyage of 140 days). The passenger list for the Peter Maxwell listed William as a 20-year-old Irish labourer. 

William Gilmore was mentioned in Victoria and Its Metropolis: Past and Present (1888) as follows: 

"Gilmore, William, Tooborac, was born in county Down, Ireland, and arrived in this colony in 1859. He was engaged in clearing land for nine months, and then worked on a station at Bendigo for two years; was for seven years gold mining in various parts of Victoria, and for eight years in New Zealand. After that he returned to this colony and selected land at Tooborac, of which he now holds 333 acres. He is engaged in grazing and breeding cattle, and has a dairy of 25 cows."

I believe some of the years in this entry do not add up. As William arrived in Melbourne in April 1859, engaged in land clearing for nine months, this brings us to about January 1860. He began working on a station at Bendigo for 2 years, which brings us to about January 1862. 

But when was he involved in gold mining in various parts of Victoria and in New Zealand? It was obviously some time between c1862 and 1871 because on 20 January 1871 William Gilmore married Bridget Colbert at Heathcote, Victoria. The marriage certificate declared he was a 29-year-old miner, so it could have been at that time that he was gold mining in Victoria. 

The Index to Outward Passengers to Interstate, UK, NZ and Foreign Ports  1852-1908 is available at the web site of the Public Record Office Victoria (PROV). This is an ongoing indexing project conducted by volunteers - Thank you volunteers! This index shows a W. Gilmore, aged 25, travelling to Otago, New Zealand on the ship Helen McGaw in December 1861.   
Is this my ancestor William Gilmore? If so, then he was among the many people at that time who headed to New Zealand as part of the Otago Gold RushYou can read more about the Otago Gold Rush on Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand.
Central Otago, New Zealand, 22 July 2005
Central Otago, New Zealand. By Phillip Capper from Wellington, New Zealand (Flickr)
 [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

The Index to Unassisted Inward Passenger Lists to Victoria 1852-1923 lists a W. Gilmore, aged 25, as returning from New Zealand to Melbourne in March 1862 on the ship Aldinga II. Was this William returning? If so, it appears he only spent a couple of months in New Zealand. Perhaps his entry in Victoria and Its Metropolis meant to say 'eight weeks in New Zealand', rather than eight years. 

I have not yet had the opportunity to view copies of the original passenger lists for either the Helen McGaw or the Aldinga II at the PROV, but I hope to do so in the future. 

William Fullerton and Peter Fullerton
My 3rd Great Grandfather, William Fullerton, and his son, my Great Great Grandfather, Peter Fullerton, are also believed to have gone to the Otago Gold Rush and spent a year there between February 1863 and February 1864. 

Alhambra (1853)
The Alhambra, 1855 [public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
The Index to Outward Passengers to Interstate, UK, NZ and Foreign Ports  1852-1908 shows that P. Fullerton (aged 18) and W. Fullerton (aged 47) were passengers on the Alhambra in February 1863The Alhambra regularly travelled between Australia and New Zealand. The Fullertons were aboard the Alhambra when they left Melbourne on 14 February 1863 for Port Chalmers, New Zealand.  Extracts from the Otago Witness' Shipping News for 1863 lists the arrival date for the Alhambra at Port Chalmbers  23 February 1863.

A family story is told by a relative that, while in New Zealand, Peter bought a Scottish piper figurine which he later gave as a gift to his younger sister, Mary Fullerton (see more about the Fullerton family at Finding the Fullertons). 

The Index to Unassisted Inward Passenger Lists to Victoria 1852-1923 lists the Fullertons returning to Melbourne from Otago, NZ, again on the Alhambra, in March 1864, listed as P. Fullerton (aged 28) and Wm. Fullerton (aged 31).  The ages are obviously not right, but I still believe it may be them. I have looked at the original outward and inward passenger lists on microfilm and microfiche at the PROV. Both Peter and William were listed on the original passenger list as miners. This voyage embarked from Port Chalmers on 27 February 1864 headed for Hobson's Bay, Melbourne. 

Edmund Joyce
A history of my Joyce family, compiled by a couple of Joyce relatives in the 1970s, states the following about my Great Great Grandfather, Edmund Joyce (1833-1916): "With the exhaustion of alluvial gold fields around Ballarat in the late 1850s, Edmund went to New Zealand where he made enough money in the goldfields to return to Victoria and buy a bullock team." The book also states that other Joyce relatives (who came from Whitegate, County Galway - now part of County Clare) immigrated to New Zealand, as well as to America and Canada. Because much research has already been conducted about my Joyce ancestors, I have not spent time researching them. With all the newly indexed resources available online, I do hope to research the Joyce's in the future.

Catherine Mulhall
Catherine (Kate) was the sister of my Great Great Grandmother, Mary Joyce (nee Mulhall) (1844-1923). Their parents were Matthew Mulhall and Margaret Coghlan and the family came from the parish of Tubberclare, County Westmeath, Ireland. I found out about Kate's connection to New Zealand when I purchased a copy of her death certificate. Kate Painter (nee Mulhall) died on 22 June 1894 at 4 Arthur Street, South Melbourne.  The certificate stated that Kate had spent 12 months in New Zealand and 14 years in Victoria. Kate had married Edward Nutting Painter on 14 January 1883 at St Patrick's Cathedral, Melbourne. The New Zealand Immigration Passenger Lists, 1855-1973 available on FamilySearch include a record for Cathe. Mulhall (aged 25, a farm servant from County Westmeath) immigrating from Plymouth (left 3 November 1877) to Wellington, New Zealand (arrived 28 January 1878) on the ship Gainsborough. 

These are just some of the connections to New Zealand in my family tree,  undoubtedly there are many more still to be discovered in my research!

Useful links:
(Sources available on request)

Copyright © 2011 Australian Genealogy Journeys.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Those Places Thursday - Aghadavoyle, County Armagh, Ireland - O'Brien/Breen

Back in Ireland, my O'Brien's were known as Breen.

Michael O'Brien (c1833-1925) and his wife Eliza (nee Carew)
(c1846-1924) - My Great Great Grandparents.
From Australian records (which include surviving copies of letters sent from Ireland) we know that the parents of my Great Great Grandfather, Michael O'Brien (c1833-1925), were Owen and Bridget (nee Finegan). Two of Michael's siblings (Hugh and Mary) remained in Ireland. Church records (and recent contact online with descendants of Mary) has shown that they were known as Breen rather than O'Brien. Michael and his two brothers (Thomas and John Joseph) and one sister (Margaret Bridget) who came to Australia were all known as O'Brien. Letters from Ireland gave the family's address as Drumintee or Dernaroy. 

Ireland location Armagh
County Armagh, Ireland
Aghadavoyle (also known as Dernaroy) is a Townland in the Civil Parish of Killevy, the Poor Law Union of Newry, the Barony of Orrior Upper, the County of Armagh and the Province of Ulster. This means that since1922 this area has been part of Northern Ireland. This area is close to the village of Drumintee/Dromintee

The Griffith's Valuation of Ireland is available to search at the Ask About Ireland web site. A search of this database shows that there are 37 Breens in the (primary) Griffith's Valuation of County Armagh. Two of these were located in the Civil Parish of Killevy: Owen Breen and Patrick Breen.  Both Owen Breen and Patrick Breen leased their land from John Foxall. Ask About Ireland provides copies of the printed valuations for 1864. According to this printed valuation Owen Breen's land is no. 88 on the reference map (provided on the Ask About Ireland web site), while Patrick's is no. 92. These properties are located on what is now known as Dernaroy Road. 

Below: Google Maps, a rough sketch of Owen Breen's 1864 allotment in the civil parish of Killevy, townland of Aghadavoyle. 
View O'Brien/Breen in a larger map

Owen Breen had a house and office on land of 5 acres, 3 roods and 20 perches. His land had a rateable annual valuation of 3 pound 10 shillings. His buildings had a rateable annual valuation of 15 shillings. This made a total rateable annual valuation of 4 pound 5 shillings. 

Patrick Breen had a house on land of 2 acres, 2 roods and 10 perches. His land had a rateable annual valuation of 2 pounds, while his buildings had a rateable annual valuation of 5 shillings, making a total rateable annual valuation of 2 pounds 5 shillings. 

The names of the nearest neighbours of Owen and Patrick Breen included (with reference map number): Bernard Ryan (89), Owen Tole (90), Bryan Meehan (91), James Rock Snr. (93)

Other surnames listed in the 1864 valuation for the civil parish of Killevy are indexed here on the Fáilte Romhat web site. They include other surnames which are (or may be) relevant to my family research: Finegan, McAlister, Kenny, Quinn, Mooney, Carr, Collins, Fearon and Larkin.  According to Google maps Dernaroy Road if followed south meets Finegan's Road. 

Below: Google Streetview, looking North-East from Dernroy Road. My 3rd great grandfather's (Owen Breen's) land.

View O'Brien/Breen in a larger map

Here are a selection of links relevant to genealogy research in County Armagh:
Copyright © 2011 Australian Genealogy Journeys.
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