Wednesday, 6 March 2019

2019. #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks; Week 11: 'Large Family'

Large Family - The Bartons and their Brood

Jane PUTLAND and Walter BARTON,  1655- 1725 are my   7 X Gt Grandparents.  They lived, multiplied, died and were buried in Hadlow Kent in England.   Walter was a yeoman and the family lived in 'Court Lodge'.

Kent in England.  Large map showing the approximate position of Hadlow.

According to other online Family History website researchers they had SIXTEEN children, and this is something I am in the process of verifying. There are births with names repeated from earlier children and confusion over dates.  This can occur on Family History Websites and anything you take from there needs to be researched further to find out its truth and if it fits with your family and has the correct information.  

It was listed that Walter had already had 2 children to his first wife, Mary CHEESMAN. 
1. Elizabeth BARTON born on 05 Dec 1683 in Hadlow, Kent, England.
 2. Mary BARTON born on 06 May 1685 in Hadlow, Kent, England.
But on the Barton Historical and Genealogical Society ‘Barton database’ (One Name Study) they list Mary Cheesman being married 13 Feb 1682 to Thomas Barton a brother of Walter’s.  Thomas also had another spouse Sarah Stephens.

So, we can cross out those first two children of Walter’s to Mary Cheesman (greyed out) according to the ‘Barton database’

According to the Family History website, Walter and Jane had the following children in Hadlow, Kent, England.
       Thomas BARTON 08 May 1689 - 12 Sep 1741 
       John BARTON 11 Mar 1690 - 26 Aug 1768.
       Walter BARTON 27 May 1691 - 25 Jul 1740.  He married Sarah FRANCE on 26 Jul 1722 in St Benet Paul's Wharf Parish, London, England. (They are my 6X Gt Grandparents) 
       Ann BARTON 26 Jul 1692 – 11 May 1699 died at 7 yo.
       Thomas BARTON 05 Feb 1693 – 1789.
       John BARTON 21 May 1695 - 11 Sep 1729. Bef 1695
       Sarah BARTON 02 Feb 1696.
       George BARTON 29 Oct 1696 - 19 Jan 1743.  ? 1695
       Anthony BARTON 21 Jun 1698 in Great Longstone, Derbys, Kent, - 01 Sep 1783 in Hadlow, Kent, England.
       Ann BARTON 11 May 1699 - 12 Sep 1722 - This seems a strange coincidence that she was born on the same day her namesake died.  STILL TO CHECK
       Stephen BARTON  11 Jun 1702 - 31 Oct 1721.
       Elizabeth BARTON 18 Jun 1704- 16 Jan 1783.
       Alice BARTON 29 Jun 1707.
       Putland BARTON 08 Mar 1708 - 10 Dec 1723.
       Mary BARTON 1712-?
       Thomas BARTON 1714 -?
Checking this out on the ‘Barton Database’ I see that they have listed TWELVE children born to Walter and Jane.  Four of the ones above are not listed as part of this family. Of them, Thomas is listed as the son of Thomas Barton and Elizabeth Browne. The other three are not included in the database.
So this very large family could end up being just a large size family after all !

The twelve children that are part of the family have their dates pretty much right, except for the two highlighted in green., and the date coincidence of the two Ann’s

I will keep researching till I can sort out as much as possible after all genealogy is an ongoing business.

PS I would love to hear from any descendants of the Barton family who have sorted any of this out and verified it.

Friday, 1 March 2019

2019 #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks; Week 10 – ‘Bachelor Uncle’

Bachelor Uncle’
My Uncle George

George Edward PEARCE was born on 17 Oct 1909 in Peebles, Peeblesshire, Scotland as the fifth child of Francis George (Geordie) PEARCE and Isabella MacIntosh LUMSDEN. 
He had two sisters: Auntie Tibbie (Isabella MacIntosh) and Auntie Ray (Sarah Elizabeth). 
And two brothers: my dad Bill (William Louden) and Uncle Jim (James Finlay). 
Apparently, they all doted on their little brother.
Not a great photo but little George is on the Left of his sisters and brothers.

The family migrated from Scotland to Australia in 1912. The children attended school and Sunday School at Orrvale and grew up with the mixed migrant families in the fruit growing area.
Link to Pearce family migration and orcharding
Further link


George with his Mother Isabella Pearce

Eventually, the Pearce children grew up into hardworking adults - the men running the orchard after their father died.  They married one by one, except for George. My mother said he was a popular young fellow and admired by all the ladies. One photo of him shows his excellent physique with very strong muscled arms.

Jim, Ray, Bill and George sorting fruit on the Orrvale orchard

George had enlisted in the militia on 31 Mar 1928 and was called up for World War II.  Listed as Lieutenant VX 52859 AIF  2/14Bn. Australian Infantry:  06 Nov 1939. He was involved in training soldiers until he embarked for war on 07 Dec 1941. He arrived in France 01 April 1942

Lieut.George Edward Pearce

George with Jim (L) and Isobel (R) Richards, nephew and niece, 
just before leaving for overseas, Dec 1941

He was injured  01 Jul  1942, but returned to fight.  He was reported missing in Action  11 Sep 1942, but he and his group managed to fight their way back to camp.  Later, on 28 Nov  he was injured in action – a gunshot wound to the stomach.  On 01 Dec he was placed on the dangerously ill list where he died in ‘46 Camp hospital’, 06 Dec 1942.  

His death was announced in the paper back home on the same day as the news he had been awarded the Military Cross (for his soldiering 28 Aug to 01 Sep 1942, Isurava, NG).

His citation reads:  
       Lieutenant Pearce with excellent control and leadership held his  troops together against repeated enemy attacks and personally led a fighting patrol into the enemy’s lines.  Unaware that a general order to withdraw had been issued, he still continued to beat off enemy attacks.  After his troops were pushed back some distance, Lieut. Pearce decided to break up the party and fight their way back in groups.  It was four days before his group reached the lines, and during this  time Lieut. Pearce showed grew skill and ability in getting his party back.
‘Shepparton News’ 14 Dec 1942.

‘A Fighting Leader
Lieut. George Pearce Dies of Wounds
In New Guinea Fighting’
Expressions of deep regret were heard at the weekend as news of the death on active service of  Lieut. George Edward Pearce became more generally known in Shepparton and district.
Official information was conveyed to his mother and family late on Thursday by Rev. D McKnight Jones.  This advice was to the effect that his death had occurred on Sunday, December 06 at a base hospital of the New Guinea Forces.
Lieut. Pearce who was born at Peebles, (Scotland) 33 years ago, was the youngest son of Mrs. and the late Mr. F. G. Pearce, of Orrvale, and came with his parents to this district when two years of age.  Growing up here, he made many friends who recognized his sterling worth, which was hidden to casual observers, under a quiet exterior.
His main recreations were football and the militia.  Playing with Lemnos, he was a sturdy defender on the half back line.  Before hostilities broke out, he took an active interest in the militia and early in the war each attempt to enlist was frustrated by the authorities, who required him for instructional work at the local A.I.F. camp where he was Regimental Sergeant Major.
Ultimately his transfer to the A.I.F. was sanctioned and subsequently he went with reinforcements to the Middle East, later returning to Australia.
A few months ago, he was wounded in the left thigh, but soon recovered and was again in  the fighting  line. The second wound was in the stomach and letters from him led his family to believe he was making reasonably good progress, so that the sad news conveyed to them by their minister came as a great shock.  Lieut. Pearce was a single man and is survived by his mother, two brothers and two sisters. His brothers are Cr. Wm Pearce and James, the latter being with the AIF “somewhere in Australia”, while his sisters are Mrs. Ray Richards and Sister “TIbby’ Pearce. 
‘Shepparton News’ 14 Dec 1942.

George was buried in 1942 in Bomana War Cemetery, Port Moresby, New Guinea, Grave No: B1-D-11. 

I never met my bachelor uncle but heard so much about him over the years, especially at Anzac Day time.  Auntie TIbbie the oldest of the family always marched a wreath up to the memorial in his honour.  I think she always felt that he was so young and should not have died before her.  It is such a shame that so many young men and women lost their lives in the war and never survived to live out their natural lives.
- RIP Uncle George -

A comic interpretation of Uncle George's war experience that led to his award - the Military Cross.

Wednesday, 20 February 2019

2019 - #52Ancestors in 52 Weeks; Week 9 Prompt:’At the Courthouse'

 'At the Courthouse'

I couldn’t find any court dealings in my family history and wasn’t sure what to write for this prompt, until I read this story below, which Chris Goopy included in her ‘Collection of Convict Captures’, on the blog TROVE TUESDAY, 19 February 2019. HEADLINESOFOLD.BLOGSPOT.COM  


I loved the story and thought I would transcribe it for my blog. Although there isn't a court case described here, no doubt you can picture them with the 'Giant' Morgan facing the Judge.
‘Pursuit of a Convict’ is a story that appeared in the ‘Beverley Times' (WA: 1905-1977) Thursday 16thJanuary 1958. Page 6.  It comes from ‘Trove’ National Library of Australia.

‘Our Strange Past’

It is hoped that Captain John Hindmarsh had a nice trip out from England on the ‘Buffalo’, in 1836, to become the first Governor of South Australia, because he had an absolutely miserable time after he landed.

Convicts escaping from Van Diemen’s Land all seemed to want to live in and around Adelaide, and they caused the new Governor no end of bother.  They kept breaking into the Government stores to steal guns and ammunition with which they shot at law abiding citizens.

To stop this sort of nonsense Governor Hindmarsh appointed a Sheriff, Mr S Smart.  This had an immediate result: escaped convicts decided to shoot the new official.
Leader in this school of thought was an arrogant giant named Morgan. Selecting two associates, he crept up to Sheriff Smart’s bark hut, one dark night, pushed open the flimsy door and Bang!
Fortunately, the shot missed, and Sheriff Smart rushed to the door firing his musket and shouting appropriate sentiments.


All this scared the three bad men so badly that they ran considerable distances.  Dark though the night had been, the keen eye of the Sheriff had identified the killer squad. Governor Hindmarsh agreed that the three men should be hunted down and punished, but there was one serious complication.  South Australia didn’t have a police force.
“I’ll call for volunteers” decided the Governor. A very mixed group answered the call, but there was one particularly lively looking fellow in the form of Mr Henry Alford.  This man wasn’t very big, but he had a conscientious look about him. 


Governor Hindmarsh selected him to lead a party of three in pursuit of the wicked giant, Morgan, who rumor said hadn’t stopped running until he had reached the whaling stations at Encounter Bay, 68 miles from Adelaide, as the crow flew.

Constable Alford didn’t know the way to go, so a ‘blackfellow’ was supplied as a guide.  Rations for 10 days were gathered and an arsenal of 1 musket, 1 horse pistol and 1 pocket pistol supplied.  The first full-blooded manhunt in South Australia was underway.
At the end of the first day’s march, the black guide discovered that the party’s aim was to capture a desperate ex-convict. Without further ado, he resigned on the spot and was last seen racing back through the brush towards Adelaide.
Constable Alford ordered his two assistants to press on regardless.

Seven days later the party staggered into Back’s whaling station in an exhausted state.  Their boots were completely worn out, they were covered in scratches and blisters, and they were convinced that the man who had calculated the ten days rations must have been catering for mice not men.

A lesser man than Constable Alford, might have retired from the police force at that point. But our hero was still full of fire. 


He announced to the whaling people that he and his mates were cattle dealers and had come to Encounter Bay to take delivery of a shipload of cattle that would be arriving there soon.
It was a ratbag story, but it was accepted because only convicts on the run only ever came to Encounter Bay and they all told similar tales.  Most of the whaling crews were escapees.  After a few days, Constable Alford learned that Morgan was definitely living in the district and was probably camping further along the beach and probably near Wright’s whaling station.

“The ship may bring the cattle in near Wrights,” said Constable Alford craftily and led his men up the beach.  At Wright’s, they had a bit of luck.  There they sighted a well-known but highly nervous runaway convict.  Cornering him, they fiercely whispered that if he didn’t find out and show them where Morgan was hiding, they’d take him back to Adelaide.  
This convict must have been a born stool pigeon.  He eagerly cooperated and by night led the police party to a hut hidden deep in the bush.   Alford and associates rushed in and grabbed Morgan before he could wake and grab a gun. Well, they had Morgan, but how were they going to hold him on the long trek home?  The fellow, as mentioned before, was a giant. 
Quick thinking Alford was the first to provide a solution.  We will handcuff him to one of us.


His two assistants immediately agreed and voted that the honor go to Alford himself.  This did not delight Alford at all. He was only a small chap and Morgan was so big.  But as senior man he had to take the responsibility.  And so it was that Alford and Morgan became bound to each other with links of steel.
Before starting the march back to Adelaide, it was necessary to drop in at Wrights whaling station to get some supplies.
The wicked Morgan began shouting: “Help, help, the cops have got me”.  This appeal touched the hearts of many of the whalers who began assembling a rescue party. Extra forces were rushed over from Granite Island, where particularly bad lads resided.  Constable Alford was now in real bother, his party surrounded by vicious types with no respect for authority.

He levelled his musket and ordered his men to make play with the horse pistol and the pocket pistol. 
“We are well armed” he snarled “and we will sell our lives dearly”
It must have been a convincing bit of acting. The wolves fell back. Constable Alford then pulled a winner.  He sighted two young men whom he happened to know were wanted for mild offenses back in Adelaide. He shouted that they were under arrest and amazingly the scamps surrendered like lambs. 

There was no more interference and the tramp home began. The party consisted of Alford and his two sides, Morgan the giant and the two young prisoners.  It seemed to Alford that the safest way home would be along the coastline.  But Morgan who was in a perfect position to catch his ear, said that he knew a super shortcut over land and would be delighted to act as guide.  So meek and mild, Morgan had become that Alford decided to accept the offer. 

 For two days the convict led the way through forest and fen.  He moved at a fast pace, and curiously enough, small Mr Alford dragging at his wrist, was somehow forced into every thorn bush and hole along the route. 
At the end of the second day the party found itself near the lakes at the entrance to the Murray River.  Morgan had been playing false!  He had been leading away from Adelaide and towards a region where escaped murderers lived. 

“We’ll make back to the coast” decided Constable Alford.  Morgan who to this moment had been hale and hearty announced that his health had collapsed, and he couldn’t move another step.
For a day the party waited for him to recover and food began to run short.  Morgan suggested a solution, that he be freed.  Next morning Alford took a firm stand.


“Get up and walk, Morgan” he demanded. 
“Shoot me if you dare” Morgan snarled back.
Alford said he would shoot
And Morgan said: “Go on”.

No-one was getting anywhere. The party didn’t have the strength to carry the convict.  Morgan grinned happily.  He was winning right down the line. He had the amateur cops licked.  They’d have to leave him behind whilst they made a rush to get food for themselves.  

But the smart Constable Alford wasn’t beaten yet.  He selected a nice big tree and handcuffed Morgan’s arms round it. 
“You can stay there until we return for you” he threatened.
More laughter from the giant.

The party moved off and when well away from the tree rested for two hours.  Then it returned to see if Morgan had softened. He hadn’t.
“This time we really will have to leave you.” Alford warned: “Please be sensible and come with us”
Morgan obviously didn’t believe it.  “Go on” he sneered.

The party went on, and by forced marching got through to Adelaide in two days, where Alford reported to Hindmarsh immediately. The Governor was sorely troubled, he didn’t want a prime scandal this early in his career – man chained to tree by officials in new colony dies of hunger.


He called a council meeting and passed a resolution establishing a police force.   A superintendent was appointed on the spot and one horse purchased at great expense. (There were few horses in S.A. at the time.)
The new superintendent with Constable Alford, another man and the horse were then sent away at the double to bring Morgan in.

The trip back to the gum tree took two days. Morgan was still alive and kicking. The kicking was being aimed at wild dogs which kept prowling round him. Never was a criminal happier to see police arrive. Of his own volition he promised that he would do anything asked of him.  After a feed and a night’s rest he eagerly marched towards Adelaide and was the freshest man in the party when it arrived.

Found guilty of trying to murder the Sheriff, he was transported back to Tasmania for life.  Down in Tasmania, Morgan awoke to the shameful fact that he had been taken by an amateur cop.  His anger rose to such a point that he escaped and fled to Victoria where he began a horse-stealing business. 

A South Australian policeman passing through the colony heard a description of him; identified him as Morgan, and, marching out into the bush captured him quick smart.
Once more Morgan went back to Tasmania, and as far as is known, remained there for the rest of his days.


Thanks to Chris Goopy who first shared the story cuttings on TROVE TUESDAY 19 February 2019 - Collection of Convict Captures:  HEADLINESOFOLD.BLOGSPOT.COM

Monday, 18 February 2019

2019 - #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks; Week 8, Prompt: ‘Family Photo’


‘Family Photo’

Pictured are my father and his two older sisters.  There would be two more boys born after this was taken.

In the picture are Sarah Elizabeth (Ray) 1902-1988, William Louden (Bill) 1904-1982 and Isabella MacIntosh (Tibbie) 1899-1990, Pearce.  

This is one of the photos from a box inherited from my father William Pearce.  I always liked the photo.  It is a very clear one of the children as they pose in their set places.  
Aunty Ray (L) looks happy, my Dad looks inquisitive and Aunty Tibbie the oldest seems to be putting up with it.
I love that the two girls have matching coats and skirts and their hair is brushed shiny with ribbons.  My dad looks elegant in his frilly shirt and shorts. The photo was probably taken in 1906-7 before Jim was born.

Interesting as I write this, I notice that they died in the opposite order to birth.  In fact, the whole family did – James Finlay (Jim) 1907-1972 and the youngest George Edward 1909-1942 killed in action New Guinea WWII.

Their parents were Isabella McIntosh Lumsden and George Francis (Geordie) Pearce of Scotland.   I would think that there was a complete family photo also taken, but unfortunately, I don't have one.  Except for Sarah, the children were born around the Innerleithen/Peebles area in Peebleshire.  Sarah was born at Dumbarton Road, Whiteinch, Partick, Western Glasgow.  
(I do not know why – I shall try and find out) Here is a link showing a photo of Dumbarton Road Partick, 1904

The Pearce family migrated to Victoria, Australia 07 August 1912, their ages then ranging from twelve down to two & half.  
I imagine it would have been quite some journey for their mother and father.
They settled on land they built up into an orchard.  The men became orchardists and both married and had families.  Tibbie became a nurse and teacher. Sarah married Horatio Richards an Englishman and had two children. 

Monday, 11 February 2019

2019 - #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks; Week 7 Prompt: ‘Love’



One instant that has always stuck in my mind is a story of motherly love.
My own mother told me about my Auntie Bessie Mackay (nee Elizabeth Walker Pearce) who was my father’s cousin.  (My 1st cousin X 1 removed)
With her first pregnancy, she delivered twins. They were both so tiny that she was told to keep them in the kitchen, with the kettle boiling continuously and the doors shut. The only hope for either to survive.  A mammoth task – both day and night.  She did this lovingly and along with the extended family praying for the new babies, one baby was able to survive.  He grew into a healthy very tall man and would be about 85 now, as he was born around 1934.
Auntie Bessie and her husband Uncle Willie (William Alexander Mackay) both had very strong Scottish accents that they never lost.  They went on to have three girls and another boy.  Later when researching, I learned that Uncle Willie had twin sisters 13 years younger than him - Willamina and Margaret, who were born on 04 Apr 1909.  Only Willamina survived and she lived until 1999, dying at 90 years of age.
Auntie Bessie was a darling and when I had my first child she came up and lived with us for a while helping Dad and Mum prepare the market garden produce for the Sydney Markets and local sales.  She loved my baby daughter and sang and rocked her for hours.  
Auntie Bessie was a prolific knitter and had a big suitcase where she kept pre-knitted items. She would let me select an item for my girls when I visited her.  We called her Gran Bessie, as she was just like a grandma to the children.
I also remember that she always bicycled everywhere she went,  and even when she was elderly, she had an exercise bike to ride.  She made real Scottish shortbread that we all loved.  At the side of their house in Drummond Rd, Shepparton was a blood -plum tree.  How I relished those delicious dark juicy fruit - the best plums I have ever had.

I do have a better photo tucked away somewhere - when I find it I shall replace this little one taken in about 1954,

RIP Gran Bessie.  
28 Apr 1901 – 01 Feb 1994. Died age 93.

Monday, 4 February 2019

2019 - #52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks; Week 6 Prompt: ‘Surprise’

 Week 6 Prompt:  ‘Surprize’

I was trying to think of something in my ancestry/research that was a  surprize but everything that came to mind I had already written about or the people were still alive.

When low and behold my surprize hit me in the face this morning!!

I was doing some research on my paternal side of the family and needed an old photograph to check people and names.  I took the photo back to my desk and realized I had picked up the wrong one.  This one was a family photo on my maternal side - same generation.  I started to look at it closely and as it was not labeled, I thought I would mark who the family members were.  
There was Mother (Eleanor Wells) and Father (Arthur Samuel Palmer) with 5 sons and 1 daughter. 

What a shock – I only have 4 boys and 1 girl in my tree !!  
This is not counting the first-born child - daughter Edith Agnes born in 1873, who sadly died when only one year old.

So the children I know are:
        Names                                     Birth (Photo position)
    1.    Arthur Ernest (Ern)         1874 (? Mid Centre)
 2.  James Edward                   1876  (? Mid Back)
   3.  Percy Richard Frederick  1878  (? Back right)
4.  Violet Maude                      1879  ( * Back left)
  5.  Claude Laidlaw                   1881   (? Front right)

So, who is this other boy in the family photo - possibly kneeling on the Front left?  

None of them look like twins.
I checked on Ancestry the other matching Palmer trees and they had the same information as me.
I checked Arthur Palmer and Eleanor Wells marriage and the date was 1871. 

Ref: Australian BDM Register, Schedule D.  No 24  Marriage copy of Entry. Reg no: 1175  
(given to me by relative Lesley Holt, 5 Aug 1981)

This could mean there was an earlier child. 
However, I could find no sign of one on the Birth Register or in Trove Newspapers.

I recognize Violet as she is the only daughter in the family alive and is my Grandmother.  I have other photos of her at that age, labelled. 

I also checked to see if I could find photos of the men to compare. I had photos of the four men - but they were all as adults, and it was hard to tell.  I have marked the boys as I think they could be placed in the photograph, in the list above.

There is no record available of wills for Eleanor or Arthur. None of the children are marked on Electoral Rolls that I have found so far.

However I did find on Eleanor’s Death Certificate the list of children from her marriage and it does not include any other son, to those I already know. (Crop from Death Certificate)

So this 'Surprize' extra boy in the photo will remain a mystery for now.