Chooks or students?

ChickensThe Geelong Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum Annual Reports never cease to amaze me – this time for two reasons.

  1. The number of “employees” listed by company / employer.  Even if the company or employer kept an archive of their records, they wouldn’t be easy to track down, but because the company or employer and their employees contributed to the Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum Fund, they were listed in the Annual Reports.  We’re talking about ordinary people – probably our ancestors!  It’s definitely worth checking the Geelong and District database after each major update.
  2. The reason for choosing this photo!  Apart from collection boxes and other donations, the Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum Annual Reports list “Gifts in Kind” – the donors and generally the item(s) donated.  A popular contribution in the 1918-1919 Annual Report was EGGS!  It appeared that local schools raised chooks and contributed the eggs to the Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum.  And what an amazing job they did!  I hope they got plenty of school work done as well and didn’t devote their entire time collecting eggs and looking after the chooks. :-)  This lengthy list is about 3,286 dozen eggs being contributed.  And the top 5 schools? …
  • Ashby State School – 220 dozen
  • Winchelsea State School – 213.10 dozen
  • Modewarre State School – 160 dozen
  • Flinders School – 157.4 dozen
  • Ocean Grove State School – 141 dozen

We now have 1,623,428 records in the Geelong and District database.  This is what’s been added since the last major update on 1st October 2014:

  • Geelong Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum: Annual Report 1918 – 2,524 entries
  • Geelong and District: PROV Wills and Probates 1841-2009 – 35,820 entries
  • Old Ocean Grove land titles: sellers and purchasers – 2,336 entries

Details on these indexes can be found in the Geelong & District Potpourri pages.

And don’t forget to search again for your ancestors in the Geelong & District Database – they could have been in the last load of additions!

Geelong Family History Group – Urgent notice!

South Barwon Community CentreMessage from John Stewart, President, GFHG:

Hi everyone (as addressed) Being Geelong Cup Day, the Belmont Library is CLOSED – and they didn’t let us know. Our meeting tonight will be at the South Barwon Community Centre, which is in Mount Pleasant Road.  As you go up the Belmont High St hill from the river, turn right at the Belmont hotel (traffic lights) into Mount Pleasant Road.  The Community Centre is a short way up on the left. Obviously, if you are coming down High St., you turn left at the hotel. Please let others know in case they don’t see this email. Cheers, John

The South Barwon Community Centre is located at 33 Mount Pleasant Road, Belmont Vic 3216.

Don’t miss this chance to hear Rhonda Coffey talk on the history and background of Cottage by the Sea.

Ocean Grove album – about 35 years ago

Robert Bruce IRVINGWhat a great album!  Robert “Bob” Bruce IRVING [RBI] loved Ocean Grove with a passion.  His grandfather, Thomas GRANT, was a member of the Ocean Grove Progress Association in the early 1900s when he built the “Lookout” for the people of Ocean Grove.  The lookout has since been known by locals as “Grant’s Lookout”.

Thomas GRANT built a house, Spray Cottage, on the corner of Dare and Bramwell Streets for two of his unmarried daughters.  Another daughter Janet married George Washington IRVING and in 1940 George’s son Robert [RBI] married Lorna BRAMLEY – they spent their honeymoon in Spray Cottage.  In 1952 RBI built his beach house just down the road from Spray Cottage in Dare Street.

RBI was a journalist and photographer and as editor of the Geelong Advertiser he took the opportunity in his editorial once a year to give a retrospective of Ocean Grove.  The Foreword of the album explains the contents:

Compilation of the following photographic project on Ocean Grove was inspired by the picture on Page 2.  This was taken in 1917 by my mother, Janet IRVING (nee GRANT).  Recently I found the negative, printed it and was so amazed at the changes which 60 years have wrought that I decided to record something of Ocean Grove in 1977 so that persons living there in 2037 might be able to see something similar to the changes that I have witnessed.

I was born in Canterbury, Melbourne, in 1917, and made my first acquaintance with Ocean Grove at the age of approximately a fortnight, when my mother left hospital and spent a holiday in the cottage her father, Thomas Alexander GRANT, had built on the north-west corner of Dare and Bramwell Streets.  It would have been very isolated at that time.

Subsequently, our family spent many happy holidays there until the cottage was sold during the second world war.  Twice (in 1925 and 1927), my mother, my sister, Gwenyth, and I lived there for six months on end while our father was otherwise occupied with his calling, and Gwen and I attended the tiny school shown on Page 14.

No sooner was I discharged from the AIF after the second world war than I resolved to have another link with Ocean Grove.  By 1951, I had found and acquired a suitable double block of land at 128 Dare Street, and, by the end of 1953, my wife, Lorna, and I had erected, with our own hands principally, a three-bedroom timber dwelling thereon.  Our children and their children enjoyed many holidays there.

Ocean Grove was one of Bob’s passions – another was Rudyard Kipling.  How appropriate that he included a Kipling quote inside the front cover of the album:

God gives all men all earth to love,
But, since man’s heart is small,
Ordains, for each, one spot shall prove
Beloved over all.
Rudyard Kipling

Enjoy the 48 pages of this special album:

  1. Foreword and beach photo
  2. 1917 photo, east end of Ocean Grove
  3. 1977 – same direction
  4. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking east-north-east
  5. 1930 and 1977 – Grant’s Lookout
  6. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking west
  7. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking north-west
  8. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking nor-nor-west
  9. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking nor-nor-east
  10. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking north-east
  11. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking east
  12. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking toward Point Lonsdale
  13. 1977 – from Grant’s Lookout looking toward Barwon Heads
  14. OG State School; c.1917 – from cnr Dare and Bramwell Streets looking south east; 1981 – King tide and mountainous surf
  15. 1977 – dawn light on beach; beach & Barwon Heads Bluff; 1977 – east end of Dare Street; 1952 – building 128 Dare Street
  16. 1977 – from 132 Dare Street looking west
  17. 1977 – from 132 Dare Street looking north-west
  18. 1977 – from 132 Dare Street looking nor-nor-west
  19. 1977 – from 132 Dare Street looking nor-nor-east
  20. 1977 – from 132 Dare Street looking north-east
  21. 1977 – from 132 Dare Street looking east-north-east
  22. 1977 – Skinner’s Store
  23. 1977 – The Terrace shopping centre from Hodgson Street
  24. 1977 – from Aldebaran Road corner looking west
  25. 1977 – from Aldebaran Road corner looking north-west
  26. 1977 – from Aldebaran Road corner looking nor-nor-west
  27. 1977 – from Aldebaran Road corner looking nor-nor-east
  28. 1977 – from Aldebaran Road corner looking north-east
  29. 1977 – from Aldebaran Road corner looking east
  30. 1977 – Public Hall, Presidents Avenue
  31. 1977 – Catholic Church, The Terrace
  32. 1977 – original St Peter’s Church of England, Draper Street
  33. 1977 – new St Peter’s Church of England, Draper Street
  34. 1977 – Methodist Church, cnr Eggleston Street and The Terrace
  35. c.1920 – Barwon Heads boathouse with GRANT girls; 1977 – Boathouses in Dare Street; 1978 – Boathouses extended
  36. Green Gables [former Coffee Palace]
  37. 1979 – Cath-Kin flats [former Mafeking House]; Spray Cottage
  38. 1980 – gardening at 128 Dare Street
  39. 1980 – four colour postcards of Ocean Grove
  40. 1980 – three colour postcards of Ocean Grove; 1920s postcard of Barwon River
  41. 1920s – The Bluff; 1981 – The Bluff; 1916 – Barwon Heads river beach and boathouses
  42. c.1978 – Orungal boilers and story
  43. 1925 – MENZIES family; 1973 – Ocean Grove article; 1920s – panorama of the Barwon River postcard
  44. c.1920s – four images – Ocean House, Green Gables; Lovers’ Walk; FOYSTER’s first bus
  45. 1905 – Mafeking House; early 1900s – General Store
  46. 1910 – Ocean Grove State School
  47. 1958 – Ocean Grove Proclamation
  48. 1982 – article re demolition of Mafeking / Cath-Kin

WILD or WYLD – anyone lost this family in Victoria?

WYLD / WILD family headstoneI’m not surprised if anyone has “lost” this family – and it’s not just because the surname has multiple variations:

  • WILD
  • WILDE
  • WILDS
  • WYLD
  • WYLDE
  • WYLDS

And that’s just some that I’ve found.  The family headstone in the Catholic Section of Eastern Cemetery, Geelong is quite clearly WYLD but most of the BDM Indexes opt for the “I” instead of the “Y”.

The key to this “missing” family is that the majority of the eight children don’t appear in the Victorian Digger BDM Indexes.  Johanna, born at sea on the ship John and Lucy in 1855 appears in both the Marine Index as well as the Pioneer Index.    Son Edward John appeared in the Victorian Early Church Records [ECR].  But all the rest appeared in the Geelong & District Church Records [baptisms] except for Sarah who was only picked up from her entry in the death index.  Oh yes – all the others appeared in the Victorian BDM Indexes for their deaths and marriages but not the births.  And no, it had nothing to do with the births being before civil registration – only Sarah and Johanna [born at sea] fell into that category.

There heaps of more details and references to be added – many on the Geelong and District Database, in the meantime the Family Group Sheet gives you the bigger picture together with all the references – perhaps it will help someone descended from this family that tried VERY hard to remain hidden! :-)

And what started all of this?  I’ve been recording and researching families who spent time in the Immigration Depot in Geelong.  That was where I first came across the WILD family – when their second daughter, Johanna, was baptised on 21 January 1856, the family gave their abode as “Depot, Geelong”.  This was just five days after the ship John and Lucy arrived in Geelong.  They didn’t leave the depot until 5 February when they went to work for P DUNNE at Fyansford.

I wonder if there are any descendants with photos of any family members?

Digitising Shire of Bellarine Rate Books

Who lived here?Well, this is definitely an experiment – my first POLL and I have no idea what it will look like or how it will work!  So forgive me if I get it all wrong.  More and more people are trying to research where their ancestors lives, and who lived there before and after them.  Rate Books are a great tool for this type of research.

The Bellarine Historical Society in conjunction with the Geelong Heritage Centre are applying for a grant to digitise the Shire of Bellarine Rate and Valuation Books – one of the few former shires in the region that doesn’t have them digitised yet!  The digitised records will enable us to properly index them – the index will be online but not the digitised records – the grant will only cover so much and this is the first step!

We are gathering letters of support from organisations in our district but I wondered what sort of response we might get with a Blog Poll?

So here goes – the instructions say to paste this code … :-)  Please participate and help us with the application!

 

 

When did they die?

Inventory in Probate fileSometimes we take things for granted and don’t realise how many people are not aware of the myriad of different places they can find a person’s date of death – cemetery records and newspaper notices to name just a few.  Probate files also provide this information and in Victoria we are spoilt with the online Probate indexes to 2009 as well as the option to download digital copies of Probate files up to 1925.

When I was thinking about additions to the Geelong and District database I realised that extracting “local” entries from the PROV Index would assist people researching in our region.  Not only does it give an alternative method of searching [text string searching in our database] but would also remind or teach researchers that there is more than one way to skin a cat!

The PROV links and file IDs are not included as people should always go back to the original source to ensure they get the correct file, however extracting the name, occupation, residence and date of death would definitely benefit our local researchers.  Of course there will always be missed records as they have been extracted by place of residence – and we know how many place names have changed over the years.  Methodically working through possible place names, using the Geelong and District Towns, Places and Parishes file, so far I’ve covered most of Geelong, the Bellarine Peninsula, and the road to Ballarat.  There are heaps more to come so there should be no doubt that the target of 1,600,000 entries in the database will be achieved before the end of 2014.

We now have 1,582,738 records in the Geelong and District database.  This is what’s been added since the last major update on 22 September 2014:

  • Geelong Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum: Annual Report 1908 – 3,009 entries
  • The Drysdale Boys and One Girl: remembering those who fought in the First World War [Book] – 185 entries
  • Geelong and District: PROV Wills and Probates 1841-2009 – 52,354 entries
  • Old Ocean Grove land titles: sellers and purchasers – 185 entries

Details on these indexes can be found in the Geelong & District Potpourri pages and the Geelong & District List of Books.

And don’t forget to search again for your ancestors in the Geelong & District Database – they could have been in the last load of additions!

Update of Ocean Grove land titles

B041RAYs Store - now demolishedA lot of titles have been added to the Ocean Grove land titles database so it’s worth checking again.  A lot of new photos have also been added – links to these can be found in in the PDF Section Plans.

In the meantime, it might help people understand the Sections that make up “Old Ocean Grove” as these can be confusing – especially as every section starts with Allotment number 1 ! :-)

WARNING – hyperlinks to photos in PDF Section files may not work in some browsers – it is best to save the PDF file then open in Acrobat Reader – the links will then work fine.

Plans, Allotments, Address, Transactions, Photo links

  • Old Ocean Grove Section ASection A plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Tuckfield Street in the east
    • The Esplanade in the south
    • Eggleston Street in the west
    • Madeley Street in the north
    • SECTION A file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1854 [lodged plan number]
  • Section B [bottom] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Eggleston Street in the east
    • The Esplanade in the south
    • Presidents Avenue in the west
    • The Avenue in the north
    • SECTION B file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1855 [lodged plan number]
  • Section B [top] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Eggleston Street in the east
    • The Avenue in the south
    • Presidents Avenue in the west
    • Madeley Street in the north
    • SECTION B file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1855 [lodged plan number]
  • Section C [bottom] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Presidents Avenue in the east
    • The Esplanade in the south
    • Field Street in the west
    • The Avenue in the north
    • SECTION C file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1856 [lodged plan number]
  • Section C [top] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Presidents Avenue in the east
    • The Avenue in the south
    • Field Street in the west
    • Madeley Street in the north
    • SECTION C file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1856 [lodged plan number]
  • Section D [bottom] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Field Street in the east
    • The Esplanade in the south
    • Sweetman Parade [now Wallington Road] in the west
    • The Terrace in the north
    • SECTION D file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1857 [lodged plan number]
  • Section D [top] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Field Street in the east
    • The Terrace in the south
    • Newcomb Street in the west
    • Asbury Street in the north
    • SECTION D file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1857 [lodged plan number]
  • Section E plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • McCutcheon Street and Sweetman Parade [now Wallington Road] in the north east and east
    • Orton Street in the south
    • The Barwon River in the west
    • Guthridge Street in the north
    • SECTION E file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1828 [lodged plan number]
  • Section F [left - west] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Eggleston Street in the east
    • Madeley Street in the south
    • Field Street in the west
    • Thacker Street in the north
    • SECTION F file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1858 [lodged plan number]
  • Section F [right - east] plans
    The boundaries of this Section are:

    • Tuckfield Street in the east
    • Madeley Street in the south
    • Eggleston Street in the west
    • Thacker Street in the north
    • SECTION F file with address, transactions and photo links
    • LP1858 [lodged plan number]

Background information and original announcement …

Some things are worth waiting for!  Just over 10 years ago – 10 May 2004 – I purchased and downloaded a digital copy of a Certificate of Title Vol 1946 Fol 389059.  This was the largest of several early Titles for Ocean Grove and contained 82 pages.  It, together with the other titles, was an absolute gold-mine for anyone researching early land owners in Ocean Grove.

Ocean Grove began as a private subdivision containing more than 2,263 allotments – by the time land-owner details were given to the local council for rates & valuations, unravelling the puzzle of who owned which allotment was just too hard to contemplate.

Way back in 2004 I knew these Titles were the answer to this puzzle but it just seemed too daunting.  A recent week’s holiday when it was cold and wet was the perfect environment – turning those ideas into a workable database.  And it worked!  10 years might seem a long time but when you see the end result, the wait was definitely worth it!

The names of the Sellers and Purchasers have all been added to the Geelong & District database but the detail is what will help people with their research.   These links will take you to the Plans showing allotments from the original subdivision for Sections A, B, C, D, E & F.  Reports from the Ocean Grove land database are also available in text searchable PDF format for these six sections.  These reports will be updated periodically when more Certificates of Title have been added to the database.

Nurses, WWI, Infirmary and Books

Sr Olive Laura THOMASAdditions to the Geelong and District database are quite a mixture but it would be hard to go past the story of one of our local nurses who served during WWI – Sr Olive Laura THOMAS.  Looking at the Geelong Infirmary and Benevolent Asylum WWI Roll of Honour [Visions & Realities: A history of the Geelong Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum], the list of nurses includes Nurse M J THOMAS and Nurse O THOMAS.

It is possible that the first should be Nurse M R THOMAS as two siblings – Margaret Rosetta THOMAS and Olive Laura THOMAS – left Melbourne on 6 December 1916 on the ship Orsova.  Margaret, aged 31, enlisted 24 August 1916 and Olive, aged 25, enlisted 8 September 1916.  Both girls served in France.  Olive returned to Australia 26 November 1918 and resigned 19 December 1918 “due to family reasons” – perhaps to support her recently widowed mother.  Margaret returned 4 January 1920.  Both siblings ended up marrying.  Margaret died in 1957 and Olive in 1968.  The beautiful photo of Sr Olive Laura THOMAS is from the State Library of Victoria Collection.

We now have 1,525,764 records in the Geelong and District database.  This is what’s been added since the last major update on 14 June 2014:

  • Geelong District: Nurses from the Victoria Government Gazette 1952-1956 – 625 entries
  • Geelong Infirmary & Benevolent Asylum: Annual Report 1898 – 2,889 entries
  • Lemnos 1915 – a nursing odyssey to Gallipoli [Book] – 97 entries
  • Linton Cemetery Notes [Book] – 125 entries
  • Forever Home: a history of the Yaugher Cemetery (Forrest-Otway Region) [Book] – 782 entries
  • Forrest Region Voters: Forrest, Yaugher, Kaanglang & Henry’s No. 1 Mill (compiled from Victorian Electoral Rolls 1903-1960) [Book] – 1,743 entries

Details on these indexes can be found in the Geelong & District Potpourri pages and the Geelong & District List of Books.

And don’t forget to search again for your ancestors in the Geelong & District Database – they could have been in the last load of additions!

Peter F B Alsop

The Old Iron Bridge at ShelfordI can’t think of any image more appropriate than the Old Iron Bridge at Shelford to bring back memories of Peter Alsop.  Ss Peter & Paul’s Catholic Church at Ashby [Mercer Street, Geelong] would be up there and there were so many other buildings and structures with which Peter was involved but as an engineer bridge’s were hard to beat.

I say “bring back memories” because sadly Peter died 6 September 2014.  He was buried with his parents at a private funeral last week.  Our thoughts are with Peter’s close friends and respect his wish for privacy.

It is important however that all those researchers over the years who admired and benefitted from Peter’s knowledge are aware of this sad loss to our Geelong community.

Peter treasured his privacy even more after the death of his close friend, Ian Wynd, in 2003.  We have been so fortunate over the years with some major contributors to our history – Ian, Peter, Bill Morrow, Philip Brown, Ruth Hill, and Bill Smith – we’ve been spoilt and we miss them all.

Lots of Geelong Addies!

Old Geelong Advertiser buildingGosh I hope everyone has been following the number of Geelong Advertiser editions added on to Trove / NLA in the last couple of weeks!  I was going to post some messages on our Geelong & District and GDHA Mailing Lists but with the problems on Ancestry that means that all Rootsweb mailing lists are also out of action.  Hence this blog!

If you don’t know how to be on the notification list, go to NLA Newspapers for the Geelong Advertiser [1857-1918] and click on one of the options for Web Feeds.

Since 27 May 2014, this is the list of Addies that have been added online:

  1. From 1859-07-01 to 1859-12-31
  2. From 1860-07-02 to 1860-12-11
  3. From 1906-01-02 to 1906-12-31
  4. From 1908-07-01 to 1908-09-30
  5. From 1910-04-12 to 1910-07-30
  6. From 1910-11-17 to 1911-03-08
  7. From 1913-12-18 to 1913-12-31
  8. From 1860-01-02 to 1860-06-30
  9. From 1860-12-12 to 1861-05-31
  10. From 1864-09-12 to 1865-02-28
  11. From 1865-08-26 to 1866-02-23
  12. From 1866-08-25 to 1867-02-21
  13. From 1867-08-24 to 1868-02-19
  14. From 1871-03-01 to 1871-08-31
  15. From 1872-03-14 to 1872-10-31
  16. From 1875-01-02 to 1875-06-30
  17. From 1881-01-03 to 1881-06-30
  18. From 1884-01-01 to 1884-06-30
  19. From 1885-01-02 to 1885-06-30
  20. From 1885-07-01 to 1885-12-31
  21. From 1886-07-01 to 1886-12-31
  22. From 1902-07-01 to 1902-12-31
  23. From 1903-07-01 to 1904-06-30
  24. From 1904-07-01 to 1904-12-31

Now that’s an impressive list that will keep going for some time to come!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 345 other followers