Geelong & South Western Rail Heritage Society

Biregurra Railway StationI do love it when groups in our region progress to having a real web and blog site.  We have an addition to this category in the last month.

Obviously they still want to add more to their site but they are well and truly up and running and it’s worth checking them out.  The Geelong Rail Heritage Society web site includes an amazing range of up-coming tours and events.  They also have a great range of books / publications.

Congratulations and keep up the good work.

More than I expected to find

Fyansford Paper MillsOne of the followers of this blog asked a simple question.  My initial reaction was … yet another person asking for help.  Depending on what resources I have open at that instant often governs my reply and depth of involvement.  I don’t normally give a flat “no” but further requests often end up with my “standard” reply – if I helped everyone who asks for help I’d never get any records added to the Geelong and District Database and I certainly wouldn’t have more than 1.6 million records there.

Because I was in the middle of doing similar searches for my own projects I threw this one into the mix and was about to say “enough” when I threw some keywords into Trove and the Geelong Advertiser.

What I found explains why I’ve included the photo of the Paper Mills at Fyansford!

Along with thousands of other people, Ada GOULD was included in a list of unclaimed money – discovered by the blog follower.  Ada had a Geelong address and the reader was hoping we could help find Ada.  It didn’t take long to confirm that Ada GOULD nee BAILEY was deceased, as was her husband.  It also appeared that they had no children so Ada’s siblings would be the nearest relatives.  Most of Ada’s siblings were born in Skipton, Victoria.  The task of tracking each sibling was above and beyond … I had other projects on which I had to focus but a quick look at the Geelong Advertiser completely threw me.

Ada BAILEY took on a whole new meaning – now it’s time to call in reinforcements – can any of you help with tracking down Ada’s living kin?

The story so far:

Please let me know if you find anything to add to this family and perhaps find Ada’s next-of-kin.

Geelong Advertiser – get involved in the Poll

Man's best friendWe’re looking for ideas and trying to get a feel for the amount of interest out there – have a look at the summary of our past blogs on the ditigising of the Geelong Advertiser and participate in the online Poll we’ve set up.

Spread the word and the link to this important blog where you can participate in the Poll.

Geelong Advertiser – even more!

CelebrateHave you caught up with what Father Christmas has been up to with the Geelong Advertiser?  If you’ve registered with TROVE / NLA to be notified via email then you’ll know what I’m talking about but you probably don’t know who was hiding in the Santa suit!

You might remember how much we celebrated with the Geelong Advertiser online editions taking us all the way up to the end of World War One.  But have you noticed the change to the dates?

Those dates might continue on from the previous group but the source of funding has changed.  Unfortunately this is not [yet] reflected online and this omission needs to be rectified.

The Alfred Deakin Prime Ministerial Library / Deakin University Library provided funds to take the digital collection of the Geelong Advertiser from 1919 to 1924.

Thank YouOn behalf of all researchers in our region [in fact most of Western Victoria covered by the Geelong Advertiser] we say a huge Thank You.

We have a few ideas for extending that funding and therefore the years covered but this blog should stand on its own as a sincere and heartfelt THANK YOU.

See further updates and Poll.

Is your ancestor in this list?

James DEW c.1912

The Geelong Football Club needs your help … I’m sure there are many people who don’t realise that their ancestor or relative played for the Geelong Football Club but you could just be the person that the club wants to contact.  We found this photo of James DEW who was President of the Shire of Bellarine.  Unfortunately it’s many years after he played for Geelong [in 1880] and the club would prefer a photo of DEW when he looked about 30 years younger! 🙂  If they can’t find photos of players in GFC uniforms, they will Photoshop appropriate photos into the GFC uniform for the relevant year – I think the Shire President would look a tad old in club colours if this photo was used!

From the GFC web site:

The Geelong Cats are nearing the end of an enormous project.

We have spent the last several years, gathering images of every player who has played with Geelong, since 1877… whether he played 1 game or 300 games.

As of today we have gathered around 1117 images, and we are now only looking for 206 to complete this exciting work.

We don’t expect to get an image of the player in a Geelong jumper. The best style of image is a football team photo, where he is looking straight into the camera. wedding images are also good as they usually show this “face on” style of image. of course, any images will be helpful!

We are looking to complete this work before the end of the year and so, we need these images before 20th December 2014.

If you think you may have a photo of any of the past players listed, please contact:
Mr. Bob Gartland,
Vice President
Chair, Honouring the Past Geelong Football Club
Mobile: 0418 522 526

Please have a really good look at the list of names and see if you can identify anyone.  If you have a photo you may be able to help the club with this project.

Player Year(s) played
ALLEN, Jim 1935
ANDERSON, Ernest 1898
ANDERSON, L Bruce 1919
ARBREW, Jack 1909
ARMSTRONG, Ossy 1915
BAKER, Jack R 1901-02
BAMFORD, Ray 1944
BARCLAY, Lionel 1944-45
BAXTER, 1891
BEACH, Henry 1883
BINDER, Robert 1890
BLENCOWE, Jack 1914
BLUNT, Fred 1887
BOOTH, Bob 1876-79
BOOTH, W 1878
BOURCHIER, Bert 1908
BOYD, James 1880; 1882-83
BOYD, R 1888
BROSNAN, George 1891
BROWN, Bill 1905
BURKE, 1889
CALDER, Thomas 1886-87
CALDWELL, Harry 1880
CHEESEMAN, Henry 1904
CHISHOLM, Les 1908-09
CLARKE, Angus 1881-82
COLLOCOTT, Harold 1900
CONLON, B? 1886
CONRADI, Harold 1914
COOK, 1885
COOKE, Walter 1898
COOPER, George 1890
CROHAN, Frank 1875-77
CRONIN, Fred 1902-03
CROSSLEY, Len 1888
DAVIE, Jack 1902
DAVISON, Norman 1906
DAY, Alf 1907
DE GRUCHY, Bill 1900
DEW, James 1880
DOBBYN, W H 1880
DOOLEY, 1887; 1890
DORE, Jack 1898
DUPE, Alf 1906-07
EDDY, Barry 1974-75
EDOLS, John 1882
ENFIELD, Stan 1897
EVERETT, Ern P 1918
FANNING, James 1890
FEDER, Ted 1921
FISCHER, Henry 1906
FOWLER, 1895-96
GALLAGHER, Billy 1906
GATEHOUSE, James 1900
GAUDION, Jack 1936
GIBNEY, James 1890
GLENN, Tom 1891
GLOVER, Bert 1910
GORMAN, Christy 1910
GRAHAM, Dick 1894; 1896
GRIGG, Norm 1911
HALL, G 1885
HARPER, Jim 1906
HARRIP, Ray 1957
HARRIS, George 1923
HARRISON, Vic 1935
HARTLEY, 1886; 1890
HAYNES, Ray 1971
HEARD, Harry 1941
HIGGINS, Charles 1891; 1893-94
HODGINS, Frank 1915; 1917-18
HOGAN, J 1878-79
HOLDEN, Frank 1935-36
HOLLIGAN, Joe 1913
HOOPER, Walter 1888-89
HORMAN, George 1904
HOUGHTON, Fred 1894
HURLEY, John 1902
JAMES, Bill T 1957
JAMES, Jack 1893
JOHNS, W 1880
JONES, Bill D 1915
JONES, G 1878
JONES, Percy 1929
KEARNEY, Con 1885
KELLY, Joe J 1905
KEON, Johnny 1908
KERLEY, Michael 1885
KING, Alec 1898
KINSELLA, Edward 1883
KIRK, Rupert 1876; 1879-80; 1882
LAIRD, John 1957
LAWLER, Jack 1887
LEE, Jack 1903
LEGGETT, George 1906
LINEEN, Jock A 1921
LORD, Don 1901
LUKE, Arthur 1948
LYONS, Jack R 1934
MACKAY, 1893
MARSHALL, Nick 1907-08
MARTIN, Tom 1911
MATTHEWS, Charlie 1885-86; 1888
McCOY, D 1885
McGORLICK, Norm 1908
McINNES, John 1905
McKAY, Bill 1897
McKAY, Hugh 1907-08
McKEEGAN, Tim 1901-02
McKENZIE, John G 1906
McKENZIE, Sam 1896
McMURRICH, Peter 1896
McMURRICH, Peter 1904
McNEILAGE, Jim 1907
McPHERSON, Jack 1895-96
MESLEY, Arthur 1903
MILLAR, Alf 1905
MILLER, Keith A 1941
MITCHELL, George 1891-92
MOIR, 1890
MOLAN, Henry 1904
MOODIE, Bill 1901
MOORE, John 1883
MULLER, Nick 1936; 1940
MULLIGAN, Frank 1880-81
MULROYAN, Cyril 1926-29
MUNDAY, Bill 1902
MURPHY, Johnny 1905-06
NICHOLLS, Fred 1895
NUTTALL, Chris 1894
O’DONNELL, Pat 1899
O’HALLORAN, Ian 1957
O’LOUGHLIN, Jack 1898; 1901
OLIVER, William 1876; 1878
ORGAN, Geoff 1939
PALMER, George 1901
PARK, Keith 1945-46
PAYNE, Valentine 1878
PENDER, Laurie 1912
PETERSON, Tommy 1918
PITMAN, Herb 1902
PLUNKETT, Jack 1928-30
PREEN, John 1974-77
PRIDDLE, Frank 1894
REED, Doy 1919
REID, Alan L 1951
REID, Alec 1885
REID, Peter 1883
REID, Walter 1884-85
RICKETTS, George 1910
RITCHIE, Charles 1883
RITCHIE, Robert 1908
ROBERTS, Jimmy 1904
ROBERTSON, Bill 1898
ROCK, William 1884-85
RYAN, Con 1907-08
RYAN, Pat 1885-86; 1888
RYMER, Vern 1895
SANDFORD, George 1893; 1895
SAXBEE, George 1901
SCOTT, David 1975
SCRIVENGER, Alfred 1886; 1888
SHARKEY, Jack 1897
SHERIDAN, Jack 1918
SHERRY, Tom 1907
SIMSON, Andrew 1883-84
SMITH, Sid N 1911
SPARROW, Wheeler 1873-79; 1881
SPEED, M 1879
STANLAKE, Robert 1900
STEVEN, Robert 1977
STEWART, Walter 1905
STOKES, Dick 1915; 1917
STONEMAN, H 1885-86
STUBBS, Edgar 1906
SUTTERBY, Reg 1919
SYKES, S 1888
SYNNOT, George 1867-77
TANSING, George 1908
TAYLOR, Al 1890
TAYLOR, Bill M 1926
TAYLOR, George 1896
THOMAS, 1891
THOMPSON, Jamie 1915
THOMPSON, Paddy 1892
TUOHEY, 1879
TUOHILL, Jack 1944
TURLEY, Patrick 1887
ULBRICK, Fred 1881
UPTON, Ralph 1907
WATT, Ernie 1875-77
WAYTH, Stan 1903
WIGHTON, Jack 1906
WILLIAMS, Herb 1905
WILSON, George 1887; 1889
WOODS, Bill 1909
WOOLLARD, Thomas 1877

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
  • WYLD

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?

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!