Genealogy Close Calls

I was inspired to write this post as a result of reading Heather Rojo’s blog, Nutfield Genealogy, when wrote about her “Top Ten Genealogy Close Calls“. The title alone intrigued me, as I wasn’t quite sure what she meant by ‘genealogy close call’. But she explains it well: “What’s a “Genealogy Close Call”? It happens when I research an ancestor and realize that if fate didn’t intervene I wouldn’t be here today. Some of our ancestors narrowly escaped disasters, only to live on and produce a descendant that led to YOU. “ So that got me thinking. Did I have any “genealogy close calls”. My initial thoughts were no, but as the day progressed I remembered the following incidents: MY GENEALOGY CLOSE CALLS WILLIAM KENNARD ELPHICK (c1815-1869)  – Survived the voyage and wife SUSANNA ELPHICK (nee ELLIOT) (c1812-1899) William and his wife Susanna married in London in November 1838, and then immediately boarded the ‘Plantar’ ship to start a new life in Australia. The journey which on average takes about four months, took almost six months partly due to the captain’s incompetence – missing a port where they were meant to collect supplies, and having to stop elsewhere as a result, together with other misadventures such which included much of the crew being lost, as were some passengers and most of the livestock. Eventually a new crew was acquired and the journey continued. For more on their story click here. The Elphick family settled in Adelaide, and had numerous children. The Elphick’s are Mr Lonetester’s 3x great grandparents. While not everyone survived this journey, they did, and if they hadn’t he wouldn’t have be here. OTTO RAFAEL WINTER (1880-1961) – WW1 injuries Otto Winter was born in Finland and spent 7...

Trewartha’s Candy Store, Dover, New Jersey...

My regular readers will know that my 4x great grandma Charlotte Phillips and her husband Samuel Trewartha are two of my fav ancestors, and I’ve written about them from time to time. Born in the 1820s, they grew up in Cornwall, England and in the English 1861 census Samuel Trewartha’s occupation was given as Copper Miner, while Charlotte’s was Confectioner. This is followed by an entry in the 1866 Directory for Redruth (England) where Samuel is listed as a Sugar Boiler, so obviously they were making candy to supplement his income from mining. It was in 1867 that they made the lifechanging decision to move from England to the United States, ending up in Rockaway and Dover, Morris County, New Jersey, and they opened a candy store there … which from what I can tell was a wonderful store, with an incredible reputation and ran for at least several generations, with her son John and his wife Minnie running it in her later year, and I believe some granddaughters did after that, with Black Rock Candy being their signature treat. While I know a fair bit about Charlotte’s life from records, one thing I didn’t have is any photos of Samuel,  Charlotte, the candy store. That is, at least until cousin bait worked, and some distant relatives saw my previous posts, and have sent me some photos, and have kindly allowed me to share them with you here. So I must say a HUGE, HUGE thank you to Glenn Rush who sent me the photos below, and has allowed me to share them with you. And also to Eric Bullfinch who has sent me a map showing the exact location of the store in Sussex Street, Dover.   So...

Looking Back: Photos of My Grandmas...

I’ve been good recently and have been scanning a few more old family photos. Scanning isn’t the funest job in the universe. In fact it’s rather a drag. But still it is nice to have a few more done. And they are nice high res ones, named, and filed appropriately, ready for when I need to access them again in the future. But while I was scanning some photos of one of my grandmas, I thought I’d like to share them so came up with an idea to do a mostly pictorial blog post of both of my grandma’s (maternal and paternal), and in another one I’ll show you my four great grandma’s. So let me introduce you firstly to Evelyn Hannaford (nee Randell) my maternal grandma (1916-2006) And that brings me to Valda Phillips (nee Winter), my paternal grandma...

My Life in Five Photos

Can you show your life in five photos? I’m not sure if I can, but I’m going to try. I have taken this idea from a Facebook friend who participated in a “five photos of me, over five days” challenge. But true to my usual self, I decided to give it a little twist. The original rule of this Challenge was to post “5 five photos, 1 per day, on Facebook that were photos of yourself that are more than 15 years old.” I have ignored the 15 years old bit, and have decided for “My Life in Five Photos”, that they can be “of me, or showing something about me” and I’ve decided to do them all as a single post. And obviously it’s not going to show you “ALL” of my life, but rather just a few different aspects of it. I haven’t called this a geneameme, but I would love for others to take up the idea, and share a few photos of their life. 1. Apple Orchard – 1975 My grandpa had an apple orchard in the Adelaide Hills, and as my mum worked there, the orchard was my playground prior to starting primary school at age 5. So getting completely dirty was just part of my daily routine. And yes, that is dirt all over me and my clothes!   2. Broken Arm and Cemetery – 1976 I love this photo for various reasons. Firstly because I was getting my photo taken (hence the big grin), secondly it’s the only photo I have of me when I had a broken arm, and thirdly (and favourite reason) is that this photo was taken on the front lawn of my family’s house at Cudlee Creek, showing the Cudlee...

The Women Who Made Me, Me! International Womens Day...

Today, March the 8th, is International Women’s Day. It is a day to celebrate and honour women both past and present. For my contribution to International Women’s Day, I want to share with you some photos the women who have helped make me, me! Obviously throughout everyone’s life there are many, many people who influence us. For this post I’m am sticking to the ancestral lines. Concentrating on those whose genes I have inherited at least some of. The ones who taught me things when you were young, and who embedded their values and ideals into me, and no doubt some of whose trait I have picked up. HERE’S ME …   MY MUM …   MY 2 GRANDMA’S …   MY 4 GREAT GRANDMA’S … MY 8 GREAT GREAT GRANDMA’S …  Although I do have photos for 6 of my 8 great great grandma’s I have opted to simply list them, to save this becoming so ridiculously long. Kezia Howard (Cecelia) ‘Sis’ BEECKEN (1867-1939) m. Samuel Thomas PHILLIPS Mary Ellen LUCAS (c.1856-1944) m. Denis John COSGROVE Hedvik (Karolina) VINBLAD (1856-1934) m. Otto Edvard WINTER Margaret Florence HAYHURST (1855-1935) m. John DALEY Martha Rosa KELLY (1864-1901) m. William John HANNAFORD Eva RICHARDSON (1860-1925) m. Robert McCULLOUGH Phebe ROBBINS (1838-1932) m. William Beavis RANDELL Lydia Amelia BAYS m. Ebenezer SINKINSON In case you were wondering who was who in the top picture … Top row L-R: Phebe Robbins, Alona Phillips, Dorothy McCullough, Evelyn Randell, Martha Rosa Kelly, Evelyn Randell & Cec Hannaford’s wedding. Bottom row L-R: Valda Winter, Winifred Lena Cosgrove, Anthea Phillips (nee Hannaford), Valda Winter’s wedding, Irene Daley. Every one of these women (and their husbands too), played a part in making me who I am. Some were...

Honouring My Ancestors with a Touch of Bling...

Let’s start off by saying I LOOOOOOOVE jewellery. Apart from genealogy and chocolate, jewellery is a passion of mine. It all started when I was about 10 or so when an auntie gave me a beautiful silver necklace, which I wore day in and day out. This one necklace has since been replaced by a whole stash of necklaces, rings, and bracelets. And when I travel rather than buy souvenirs from the places I visit, I tend to buy jewellery. At least its small enough to bring home easily enough. Anyway I found a site that combines my love of genealogy and jewellery. So naturally I helped the economy by doing some online shopping. And now I want to share with  you what I bought …. The www.mynamenecklace.com.au website  is one of those places that you can order jewellery from and get it customised to have your kids names on it. Well I ordered a bracelet, but rather than get my furkids names put on it, I chose to put my ancestors surnames instead. Well, my four grandparents lines anyway – Hannaford, Randell, Winter, Phillips, and to top it off it has the Tree of Life in the centre. I’m so thrilled with my new bracelet that I have already ordered another one as well as a necklace. On those I’m getting the words Genealogy. Past. Present. Future. put on them, which should be cool. Anyway when they arrive, I’ll have pics on my Facebook page. They’re my Christmas presents from me to me (we all have those don’t we)? I don’t normally write about companies, but I chose to do so in case any of you also have a love of jewellery and wanted to do something customised...

My First Job

Today I was catching up on some blog reading, and found one by Jane Taubman (aka Family Historian extraordinaire) in which details her “First Job”. She came to write this after seeing a tweet from Geneabloggers  saying: “November 14: Do you remember your first job? Where was it and what type of work did you do?” And I thought I should do the same. Afterall as historians and genealogists sometimes we get so caught up in researching and recording the past, that we forget to write about the current. Not to mention our OWN history. Now to answer the question “What was my first job?”. As usual I don’t have a definitive answer, because growing up in a family business which worked from home, it meant that there was always work going on, and often I helped out. So I’ll actually tell you about my family job, as well as my first non-family job. First up the family job. My parents started Gould Genealogy & History (which was originally known as Gould Books) when I was about 3. This was a mail order genealogy bookstore which they ran from their house. My dad did the buying and promoting of books etc. via catalogues, and mum did the mailing of orders. Fast forward, a heap of years … and this is the company I work for today. I officially started working for my parents when I left school at age 16. But prior to that, maybe from about the age of 10 or so I did do paid work for them. I remember coming home and typing up family trees for people’s family history books that we were working on at the time. I remember using the microfilm reader/printer that we had at home (doesn’t everyone??)...

“Springvale”, Gumeracha – Then and Now...

Springvale” is one of those places I call “HOME”. It’s not where is I live now, but it is where I grew up. It’s a place on a dirt road, a little out of the tiny town of Gumeracha in the Adelaide Hills and is surrounded by rolling green hills (though they’re very brown in summer), and has cows as neighbours. Trust me it’s very picturesque, and the surrounding hills, creeks and hay sheds were my playground. Here’s a question for you: when you have a house name, are you naming the house or the land? In my case I think it is the land, as there were two houses on the land called Springvale, but for this post I’m just writing about the lower house. Growing up, I never knew our house (or land) had a name, and thought it was completely awesome when I discovered that it did. Not that my family ever used it. I still thought it was nice though! Anyway recently I’ve been doing some house history, and delving into the history of the “Springvale” which started back in the 1840s with the Randell family, then the Green family, then the Butler’s, and then Phillips’ (well, that is the very condensed version of it). I still haven’t worked out who actually built the house, or who actually named it – the Randell’s or the Greens? Either way it has a history that dates back to at least the later 1800s. For this Then and Now post, I have to say a HUGE thankyou to Glenis Reid who compiled the “William & Fanny Green and their Descendants” book, and is connected to the Green family that lived in this house before I did. (To be...

“She Looks Just Like You”...

Once upon a time (isn’t that how you’re meant to start stories?) … I was out shopping with my grandma Evelyn Hannaford (nee Randell) at the local supermarket. Now there wasn’t anything particularly unusual about that, as it wasn’t uncommon event. But this particular day, has stuck in my mind … and all because of five words that were mentioned. We shopped at Lobethal which is a small country town in Adelaide Hills, where you ALWAYS bump into others you know. And as expected that happened on this occasion. Now I don’t remember the lady who we met, but it was someone that grandma knew, but hadn’t seen for a while. And I was introduced to her, to which she said “She looks just like you”. Trust me, being a 10 year old (or so), and being told you look like your grandma is NOT what you want to hear, which no doubt is why it’s stuck in my head. But now that I’m older, and with a passion for genealogy, and having to opportunity to see old family photos, including some of my grandma when she was young, I’m beginning to think that maybe there is some likeness. What do you think?...

Finding Genealogy Evidence in the Most Unlikely Place...

I know it sounds incredibly cliche to say that “you can find genealogy evidence in the most unlikely places”, and more to the point when you’re not even looking for it, but it can (and has) just happened to me. Mr Lonetester and I were invited out to a friend’s birthday party recently which was held at the Tea Tree Gully Golf Club. And although I am a genealogy tragic, I must say that genealogy wasn’t exactly on my mind while I was there (except for the twice I was asked about how to search for people’s lost relatives, once they found out I work in the genealogy biz). Anyway aside from that, I was there enjoying the nibbles and chatter etc. of the party.Now I did mention that this party was held at the Tea Tree Gully Golf Club. And I know that my grandpa, Ron Phillips was a member there for years. And during the evening I noticed what looked like an Honour Board in an adjoining room, so Mr Lonetester and I decided to take a wander and go check it out. This room was impressive, and didn’t just have “ONE” Honour Board, but rather it had Winners (Honour) Boards going from top to bottom covering about half of the room. After looking through all of the boards one by one, I came across my grandpa’s name (H.R. Phillips) one two of them and it seems that 1986 was a big year for my grandpa! Unfortunately I didn’t have my camera with me, but Mr Lonetester does have a camera phone, so he kindly took some pictures for me. So there you go, who would have thought to look for genealogy evidence at a sports club....