Learning about Helen Bean nee Park

After some collaboration my mother and I managed to figure out the name and locate the nephew of my Grandfathers second wife. We were hoping that he would be able to answer some of the questions that we had about my Grandfather and his wife. Indeed he was able to help me out and he had some wonderful insights to add about their lives.

So a summary of what I learned. These are rough notes and will need to be put together and later possibly turned into a story. But for now it is a record of most of what I learned in a conversation over the phone after tracking down a relative of Helens. It was a lovely conversation that I enjoyed very much.

Helen Park, Ray Beans second wife was the person I will always remember as my Grandmother. By the time I was born Helen was my Grandfathers wife and she was known to me as Grandma. She always treated me like I was her grandchild and it wasn’t until I was much older that I eventually came to understand that I was not related to her and that Helen had never had any children at all.

Helens parents were George and Clara Park. There were six children. Of the children Ruth was the eldest, Helen was the youngest. George did in infancy, Stewart lived and married. Mary died when she was about 12 of diphtheria we think and Isabel was two years older than Helen. George, Helens father married twice. His second wife was Clara who was Helens mother. He divorced his first wife and had one son by that marriage.

Clara’s surname was Perdeaux and they were a fairly well off family. They owned a rubber company that made tires etc in Blamain, also a Balmain Ferry and an Engineering works. Up until about 1898 when there was a bank collapse.

George was one of 8 sons and he had three daughters of his own, Clara- Helens mother, May who married Bill Tilly and Alec who went on the land. George was by profession a dentist.

Helen and Ray knew each other from when they were quite young adults. Ray was running his photography business in the same building that Helen had her dress making business so they met that way. Later, after Ray left Linda, his health was not so good. He took a job doing garden maintenance and that was when he met up with Helen again. He was working as a gardener in one of the units that Helen was running her dress making business in. Helen was a dress maker from when she left school, apparently she had an excellent reputation and never had to chase clients, they came to her.
When Helen was younger and with her father, after her fathers marriage had broken up, as in George and Clara’s marriage, the family used to move around a lot. They never stayed anywhere for more than one year until they finally made a home at Westholme in Blaxland, which is now longer there.
George was a product of his time and an extremely religious Presbyterian who was very rigid. On Sunday evenings Clara would make dinner and then the kids would have to kneel behind their chairs for about 45 minutes while he said grace. By the time they had finished the food was very cold and they then had to eat it. When one of his girls became pregnant he refused to acknowledge the father even after they had been married for some years. However, he did acknowledge all of his grandchildren and was considered a benevolent grandfather by them who was always there for his children.
George ran a Public Lending Library near Waverton Station. It was called the Waverton Lending Library. In later life the girls would look after George while he was ill. At one time he got pneumonia and Isabel, the sister closest to Helen in age was looking after him. Apparently she though he was going to die. So she started giving away all of his stuff. But he got better so she then had to go and collect it all and get it back again.
Ray did a canoe trip down the Murray in about 1947. As a photographer his focus was the paddle steamers, some of those photos are still with Helens family. He did another through Central Australia at a later stage for walk about magazine. Many of those photos are still available in old copies of the magazines and through the NSW State Library. A few of them are on the flickr site attached to this website.
Ray ran a photography business out of his house in Lane Cove, taking pictures of houses for sale. He built up the business so he had four cars each with a photographer that would go around and take photos for him, each of those photographers was trained personally by Ray. Eventually the business grew too large for the house so he had a shop front on Longuevill Rd in Lane Cove. He then gave that up when he retired. He used to work with a consortium of Real Estate Agents and he would send his photographers out to take the photos of the houses for him of houses to show them to their best advantage for sale and rent. My father learned his own photography skills with Ray and worked for him for a short while, as did my mother who used to do their books in the early days of her relationship with my father.
Towards the end of his life Ray grew very sick. He had had many operations and decided that he did not want to continue to have more. Eventually he refused treatment and more operations as he had just had too many and he wanted to die.
For the last 10 years of his life Ray had had a new partner after Helen had died. He and his new partner had moved to Terrigal and enjoyed their retirement together. Lilian had been a long time friend of Helens. They were very happy together. Lilian herself passed away around 10 years ago.

Remembering Grandpa

Over the last few days my focus has shifted, for a while, from Edwin Gransden, or the Gransdens in general to my Grandfather, Ray Bean. Ray was a photographer and painter and I used to love staying with him and his wife Helen nee Park or Parkes when I was a young child. Raymond and Helen married some time between 1966 and 1972.

When I would go to their house the first thing I would notice was the sound of the clocks. As soon as I walked through the door there were clocks ticking in the background. Grandpa and Helen had clocks in most rooms, carriage clocks in the study and larger wound pendulum clocks in the other rooms. Those clocks always conveyed to me a sense of peace. I now have clocks in my house, I keep them wound and send my family mad because none of them keep time, but they all help me to relax and just enjoy the world. There is nothing better than the sound of a clock chiming the hour, even if it is the wrong hour. Of course one day it may be the right hour and that will probably be pretty exciting.

Grandpa also had an hour glass. It lasted half an hour and was a thing of beauty, all shining brass and smooth sand that just slipped through the centre constriction, at first causing a slight dip in the sand and then building up until the sides were too high to stand by themselves, then they would all pile in and the sand would speed through at the last moment just seeming to hurry to its final destination. All waiting to be turned over and start all over again.

The other thing at my grandfathers place were the paintings. He used to paint the most beautiful paintings. He worked in acrylic and I have one of my favourites of his paintings sitting over my desk as I write this blog post. He used stunning and original colours and seemed to imbue the landscapes that he saw with a sense of romance while at the same time leaving them quintessentially Australian. Grandpa was a photographer by profession and he used the eye that he had developed, he had only developed one because the other was glass, over many years, to create a scene that took the many elements and managed to find a focal point that made it peculiarly Australian and relieved the tedium that some Australian landscape can portray while at the same time enhancing the beauty of other landscapes. One particular painting that I always loved looking at was a desert scene in Central Australia. There wasn’t much there, Grandpa didn’t paint things he didn’t see and there was no Uluru to paint in a corner or in the background, he was in an area with nothing as far as the eye could see, except, that he saw a dog, pissing on the remains of a dead tree, so that is what he painted.

All of the paintings were in my grandfathers study. A room tinted in deep read and as you walked through the door there was a painting on the far side of the room. It was a self portrait and instead of eyes Grandpa had used the lenses from some of his older cameras. At first glance the painting seemed a bit odd but then you realised how apt it was. After all this is the man who only saw out of one eye for the vast majority of his life and often that eye was behind the lens of a camera.

On the other wall there was shelf after shelf of cameras and each had their own story. There were Double Lens Reflex Cameras and Single Lens Reflex cameras, there were tiny cameras in a day well and truly before tiny cameras were readily available. There were large old cameras standing on tripods that would take a plate and needed a black cloth cover to be put over the head of the camera man. Each camera had a story, many of which I wish I remembered now.

After going into the study us kids would be directed into the lounge room. We would sit down in front of the gas fire place, usually not on, this was after all Sydney, and our favourite part of the day would occur. We would be given cake, often coconut macaroons, that Helen would make, and tea- black with slices of lemon in it. Then a small and very heavy chest would be bought out and placed between us. This chest when opened would hold untold delights. Inside would be masses and masses of small highly polished stones. Helen used to collect and polish them. There were beautiful quartzes and agate, adventurine, tiger eye and carnelian, malachite, jasper and amethysts. The list would go on. We would lift them up, turn them over and grade them according to colour, to size, to shape, to whatever would appeal to us at the time. They were an unending source of delight as we compared each one and turned them over to see which one we liked best. We would then set them up and play with them, they would suddenly become cars, or horses, or jewellery or dolls, they could be anything. If we were really lucky, once in a blue moon, we would be allowed to choose our favourite and it would go home with us. There were always so many that it was extremely hard to choose just one but we were never allowed to take more than one. It didn’t matter anyway because if we couldn’t choose we knew that next time we were there, it was always possible that we would get another chance to take another one home.

As I remember my head is just crowded with so many more memories of my grandfather. I can’t put them all down in this one post tonight. So more of them will remain for another time. The axiom is, when researching your family tree, start with what you know. So with my grandfather I am starting with what I know and those are the memories I have of him, towards the end of his life and how he and his partner and house impacted on his grandchildren on the rare occasions that they were in the same city and able to visit him.

The Grandchildren

The Grandchildren



Digging up a little bit about my Grandfather Ray Bean I found out just a tiny bit more about Walkabout Magazine, the magazine that he worked for. Over years I have collected a few of the magazines and by comparing them with the photos that are in the State Library of NSW I have gather that my grandfather probably worked for Walkabout from about late 1947/ early 1948 to 1957-58.

I don’t have much in the way of detail and will need to go through each of the stories to see if I can build some idea of what he was doing. But I do have one other insight into what Ray Beans life was like. In a Biography of Arthur William Upfield http://arthurupfield.com/attachments/TravisLindsey.pdf written by Lindsay, Travis B. there is this rather tantalising piece of information.

In June 1948, not long after An Author Bites the Dust was published, Upfield led an Australian Geographic Society-sponsored party of six on a 5000 miles tour of the north-west of Western Australia. The party included Michael Sharland, naturaqlist/ journalist; Ray Bean, Walkabout’s staff photographer, Harry Tate, motor mechanic and friend; George King, cook and Arthur’s long-time friend, Keith Ewers. The aim was to compile a photographic record of the route and to gather material for articles for the Society’s journal, Walkabout. The trek took them, in tow trucks, from Kalgoorlie and through Wiluna to Port Headland. From there they followed the coast to Broome and Derby, before turning inland through Fitzroy to arrive at Wyndham on the north coast. The return journey took the party back to Port Hedland, then right along the coast to Perth.

The trek itself was arduous, covering in ten weeks what Upfield though should have taken four months.

Umm, lots more to research and slightly off the Gransden family tree, but not off my personal family tree.

Ray Bean, Photographer

Many years ago I came across some old photos by my Grandfather Ray Bean. I had known that he was a photographer and he used to tell me some of the stories that he had of travelling all around Australia and taking photographs for Walk About Magazine. Many years later I finally saw some of the photos that he took and also got hold of some editions of Walk About Magazine. Unfortunately it is virtually impossible to tell which photographs are his compared to which ones belong to other people. There is an occasional photograph that has the photographer name. More often than not the only mention is “Our Camera Man”

Over the years I have gathered together a very small collection of some of my Grandfathers work. There are many more photos then the few that I have managed to get hold of, but here are a few of the ones that I do have.

These bring back a number of memories. Not least of which is my grandfathers glass eye. The stories that he told me about it were quite confusing and contradictory. I think he told them to keep a small child entertained. The one thing that I do know for sure is that his glass eye meant that he was unable to fight in WW2. So he used his talent for other things. But that is for another day as I think I need to find out a lot more about what he did in WW2 before I actually start writing about it.


Ray Bean

Hunter Street, Newcastle, 1949 Prudential Building, Martin Place SA, Maree- The Mosque 1947 AWA Building and Wynyard Park Canonbury, No 159 Darling Pt Rd, Darling Pt (2) Canonbury, No 159 Darling Pt Rd, Darling Pt Harborside Houses 1 Harborside Houses 2 Dandenongs russ2 tony2

The value of going back over resources

I had a very frustrating day today. Everything that I was looking for to expand Edwin’s story escaped me. Eventually I decided to go back and see if I could find Maria Bakers immigration records which had been eluding me. I couldn’t. But on trying to get a grip on why I could not find them I got out her death certificate and a few things struck me.

Firstly, for years I had thought that Edwin had married in England before he came to Australia. Not so, it was Maria who married someone else in England before coming to Australia. So I can stop looking for another marriage for Edwin but I will need to see what I can chase up for Maria.

This of course leads to another question. On her death certificate her fathers name is George Baker, but is that correct? Normally a woman would not go back to her maiden name between marriages. Was Baker her maiden name or her married name? I do not seem to have the marriage certificate for Maria and Edwin, so I will need to get this to see if I can confirm Maria’s maiden name, or marriage name. If her details are properly entered on the marriage certificate I may be able to find out what Maria’s maiden name or married name is. This may be why I am unable to find her entering NSW. She may have travelled under another name.

On further looking at her death certificate, I also noticed that there were details of her fathers profession- soldier. This may possibly also give me some avenues to explore. So now looking for George Baker, occupation Soldier from Surrey UK.

Maria was born around 1823 making her 32 when she was married to Edwin. Her first marriage could well have been more than 10 years earlier. So this may well be the next challenge for this particular story.

Edwin James Gransden

Edwin James Gransden was the only surviving child of Edwin Gransden and Rebekah Gransden nee Elphick.

He was admitted to the Diamantina orphanage on the 18th f June 1873, less than a year after his mother had died. His life had changed drastically. Finding out what life at Diamantina would be useful. I have tried to get further information about the time in the orphanage but it is probable that there are no further extant records. So instead it would be good to try and find out what life was like, did the children ever meet up again? What was the school like that Ellen went to? Did Edwin also go to school while at the orphanage? He only stayed for a year, what sort of education did he have after that?

Edwin was adopted by Martha and William Dockrill. Are there any adoption records? Martha had married once before to Amos Slight. Some background on both marriages and the life that William and Martha lead would be useful.

William lived and worked at Tartha Station, Moonie River. What was it like living there and what sorts of things would Edwin have experienced during his life as an overseer on the Tathra Station.

Edwin married Catherine Wright who was born in England, her parents were Samuel Wright and Eliza Ann nee Jefford. When had Catherine moved to Australia?

Charles Aulsebrook was best man. Can he be traced?

Overland Passengers April 19 1902 Wallangarra
Mr and Mrs J E Gransden (What exactly was this journey)?

Details of Martha Dockrill’s will would be useful to find and of William Dockrills will prior to Martha’s death.

Edwin worked as a Porter on the South Division of Queensland Railways. Are there any photos and what would life have been like for him.

Once Edwin retired he entered a number of plants into the Kelvin Grove Horticultural Society plant exhibition. He received awards for a number of flowering plants and a number of vegetables. What was this show like.

Catherine was admitted to the Goodna Hospital for the Insane. She died shortly after of dysentry, toxaemia and heart failure. Are there any details for this death other than her death certificate and what was life like at Goodna?

Edwins will had two executors Alice Tyrrell and Leonard Mervyn Stemp. Are there people connections of Edwins or was this more of a legal agreement. What is in Edwins Will?

Edwin was obviously a member of the Masons- Prince George Lodge. What sort of information is it possible to obtain about the Prince George Lodge and what sort of ceremonial uniform did he wear?

Is it possible to find out if Edwin James ever met any of his extended family again and even knew that he had an extended family or where they were?

Obviously, not all of these questions for either Edwin or Edwin James will and can be answered. However, each question answered gives a more complete overview of what their lives were like and makes for a better story. There are also probably other questions that may be answered as research continues.

Further information about Edwin James Gransden can be found here http://www.mclaransofdalby.com/edwin-gransden.html not all of the above questions are answered on this website, but many of them are.

Where to next with Edwin?

Warning for Aboriginals: this article may contain images and views of deceased people.

There are a lot of things that I would like to research and add into Edwins story to make it more readable and more relevant. So I am going to put a list of those things down here so that I remember what it is that I am trying to achieve.

Edwin first went to sea around 17-18 years of age. I know that from his Merchant Navy records but I do not have any details of these voyages. I would like to try and track down some of these voyages.

Once Edwin did go to sea I have a couple of voyages in and around Australia but he obviously did a lot more than that. So I would also like to try and learn more about where he went after he joined the Merchant Navy. In particular there is a reference to a possible marriage in Brazil, did Edwin ever go to Brazil?

There is also a marriage in England mentioned on the marriage certificate for Edwin and Maria, did this marriage ever exist, is it the one in Brazil or are both incorrect?

Was Maria linked in with Caroline Chisholm and the “five pound pom” scheme that was often used by sailors who married for the five pound dowry and then left their wives and moved onto the next one. How do I even find out records to answer this sort of question? Is it possible to find records that will help me answer this question?

Does Ellen Fly/Sly come into the family in any other way than as a friend that Edwin stayed with? His only daughter is named Ellen, so she isn’t named after her mother but her name is the same as the “friend” that Edwin was staying with when he lived in the England? Is there a connection, if so what is it?

Some information on Edward Stone Parker would really add to this story. In particular he appeared to have a positive interaction with the Aboriginal people of the area which was extremely unusual at this point in time. So I would like to include some information on him and his house in my final story. There are also photos of Edward Stone Parker available what is the copyright on them and can I use one in my story. This question is already answered and a photo added to this post already.

Edward Stone Parker Public domain (subject died in 1865 - copyright has expired)

Edward Stone Parker
Public domain (subject died in 1865 – copyright has expired)

I have a photography of an aboriginal boy that belongs in my collection of family photos. Up until now there has been no indication of whether or not that photo was linked specifically to anyone in the Gransden family. This, so far is the only link I have to sustained contact with the Australian Aboriginal people. It is possible that this photo is one of the Aboriginal people that Edwin came into contact with on Edward Parkers property. What is the respectful way to deal with this photo? If at all possible I would like to have the photo on the website but I do not want to do anything that may be considered to be disrespectful to Aboriginal people and their beliefs. So I need to find out what the ethics are around something like this.

This website may give me some very good information. http://press.anu.edu.au/apps/bookworm/view/%E2%80%98I+Succeeded+Once%E2%80%99%3A+The+Aboriginal+Protectorate+on+the+Mornington+Peninsula,1839%E2%80%931840/7741/Text/ch03.html

This website may also be very useful for this and has a number of references to appropriate sources. http://prov.vic.gov.au/publications/provenance/provenance2009/the-case-of-peter-mungett

This website may also be of interest and has a picture of the huts used by the Aboriginal people at Franklinford. At this stage I think I need to put a warning up on my post. So I will add that it at the top.

Franklinford- Aboriginal Huts from the 1850's. No copyright information was available for this photo. The photos comes from http://mountfranklinannualpagangathering.blogspot.com.au/2011/02/aboriginal-reserve-near-mount-franklin.html if there is a need to remove the photo, it will be done.

Franklinford- Aboriginal Huts from the 1850’s.
No copyright information was available for this photo. The photos comes from http://mountfranklinannualpagangathering.blogspot.com.au/2011/02/aboriginal-reserve-near-mount-franklin.html if there is a need to remove the photo, it will be done.

It is possible that Edwin had a miners license, after all he is advertising for people to go shares with him in a Puddling Machine. If so, can I get hold of a copy, or get the details.

The Shakamaxon appears to be mainly a female ship. It would be very interesting to find out more about Rebekah’s arrival and the ship that she came in on.

Was Rebekah one of the women that were hired out when they came off the Shakamaxon or did she go straight to Franklinford to live with a possible relative?

Was Edwin still working for Mr Parker by 1861 or was he working for himself by now?

I have Edwin and Silas going from Victoria to Sydney and a notice in a newspaper saying that Edwin and Robert, the eldest brother, were last known in Bathurst. When did Edwin travel from Sydney to Rockhampton, when did Silas leave Edwin, and was Rebekah travelling with them the whole time? Also did Edwin actually travel to Bathurst before going to Rockhampton of was the wording of the location of Edwin and Robert specific only to Robert?

What was Crocodile Creek like? What events happened there? I know that while Edwin and Rebekah were there there was an uprising against the Chinese miners and that apparently the towns people were in support of the Chinese whilst the miners were not. Edwin and Rebekah were not miners and had both a house and shop in the town, so they would to some extent have been involved in this event. According to the news papers of the day it is more likely that they would have been supportive of the Chinese rather than against them. I would like to add some of this information into my story.

Can I get hold of more of the details of the land Edwin purchased. There seems to be only two sets of purchase details but possible as much as four different pieces of land. I would like to try and sort this out and get more detail.

What was the lead up to Edwin’s shop becoming the Post Office and is there any documentation. Running a Post Office had very strict requirements and most of those were documented. Was Edwin’s shop formal enough to have those documents? If so where do I get them from?

Edwin advertised in every issue of the local News Paper that he had a copy of the Goldfield Regulations. What were they and where do I get a copy? Can I get some pictures?

Edwin obviously received his license for the Reefers Arms Hotel. Is there a copy and where do I get it from? Are there any images?

What happened in the murder of Patrick Halligan and how did the Rewards Committee fair?

Who bought Edwin’s property?

I think that is enough for today. Tomorrow I will have a look at what I would like to obtain for Edwin James and Ellen Gransden so that I can write up the rest of this story.


Edwin Gransden

It has been some time since I last did a blog post and I have decided that I really need to get back into it. So I am going to use this blog to organise some of my research so that I can start to develop my stories further.

I was listening to a podcast the other day about Trove Tuesday, the resource at the Australian National Library that gives us access to so many wonderful newspapers online. It is one of my favourite resources but I had stopped doing any genealogy over the last year as other things took priority. But now I hope I am back.

So Edwin Gransden.

Edwin Gransden has been the most exciting person to research but also one that I still have so many questions about. A time line of the things that I have for Edwin;

His birth is 23rd November 1825 in Portsmouth England, with his Christening being the 16th of March in Alverstoke Hampshire. Even Edwins birth I didn’t realise that I had until just writing this blog. I thought I had his christening records and then wanting to put the next dot point up I realised that it contained his full birth date. Edwin has been a bit amazing about the bread crumbs he has left of his life.

Next document I have for Edwin is his sea records. He joined the merchant navy and his records give a whole heap of information including what he looked like.

Height- 5 feet 6 inches, hair- brown, complexion- florid, eyes- hazel, marks- two ink marks, left hand, first went to sea as a boy in the year 1843.
Has served in the Royal Navy 3/2 years. Ticket issued in 1847.

Not only that but this document gives him first going to sea in 1843 and saying that he was a boy. He would have been 18.

Next we have Edwin in the 1851 Census- Edwin in Hartlepool staying as a visitor in the house of Ellen Sly or Fly 33.

Arrived in Australia 12 April 1855, Age-28 On the Washington Irving, as part of the crew.Washington Irving of LONDON, ISAAC DURRANT, MASTER, BURTHEN 882 TONS FROM THE PORT OF LONDON TO SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES, 14TH APRIL, 1855

In 1855, 30th of April there is a wedding certificate for Edwin, St Phillips Church Sydney. Interestingly enough on his wedding certificate there is mention of a previous wife. No mention of it later when he is married a second time. But in his death records there is mention of a wife from Brazil. There may be something in this or the person who registered his death may just not have known him very well. So this is one of the questions I would like to try and follow up. Given Edwin arrived on the 12th of April and married on the 30th of April it is worth wondering if he knew Maria before they married or if this is one of the notorious Chisholm marriages to get the five pound dowry that lots of single women were given by Caroline Chisholm that then became such a bonus for many sailors. This is something worth looking into to see if there are any records for Maria Baker.

1858 has Edwin working at Mr Parkers at Mount Franklin. Some of Mr Parkers cattle have strayed and the reward will be paid if the cattle are returned to Edwin Gransden at Mr Edward Stone Parker’s house Franklin House, Mt Franklin. There is a lot of interesting history with Mr Parker and his involvement in a very positive way with the Aboriginal people in the area. This will provide excellent background so I really want to follow this up.

Just a month later Edwin is advertising for anyone interested in going shares with him in a puddling machine. It is unclear if he is doing this on Mr Parkers behalf or on his own. A puddling machine was used to break up clay ground to obtain the gold. So it seems likely that Edwin did at least dabble in some mining.

Rebekah Elphink arrives in Australia 1861. She comes aboard the Shakamaxon which seems to be a ship composed of primarily female immigrants. This is interesting because the main female migration ships occurred in the 1830’s, Edwins eldest sister was on the second one of them and they were discontinued as being to disruptive. It was decided that ships with families were a better option than ones with mainly women.

Not only does the Shakamaxon have a huge number of females on it but it also gets trapped due to bad weather and the women are unable to get off board. So the immigration agent puts out an advertisement in the paper saying that the hiring of women from the Shakamaxon has been postponed until the women are able to disembark. Married women will be hired out at 10am and single women at 11am. Was Rebekah hired to go the Mount Franklin or was she met at the ship as a family member?

Then in 1861 Edwin marries again. There is no sign of divorce, no sign of Maria and years later, when Maria dies her marriage certificate calls her Mrs Gransden. So this may well be a case of bigamy. Certainly he seems to have left her very quickly which again makes me wonder about the Chisholm dowry. At his marriage to Rebekah Elphink at Mount Franklin House, Franklinford Mr Parker is one of the witnesses. It is also interesting that Rebekah’s mother’s maiden name was Parker and it may well be that Rebekah and Mr Parker are related in some way. Interestingly enough Rebekah’s immigration records show her arriving from England earlier that year. Life sure seems to move fast in the Gold fields.

Once again in 1861 some cattle go missing and Edwin advertises for them to be returned unlike the previous advertisement he does not mention that the cattle belong to Mr Parker and the brand is now a C in a circle rather than a B in a circle. So it is possible that these cattle belong to Edwin.

Next sign of Edwin and Rebekah is the very next year. Edwin and his brother Silas are on a ship, the Rangatira travelling from Melbourne to Sydney. Both are down as crew A.B. I have yet to find out what that means. No women are mentioned so it is possible that Rebekah is on the ship with them but not certain. I have been unable to find her anywhere else but six months later Edwin and Rebekah’s child is born in Rockhampton, so it is logical to think that she is travelling with her husband and his brother. Even more interesting, in 1866 Silas is again in Australia, in Sydney and he puts out an advertisement wanting to catch up with his brothers Robert and Edwin, last known in Bathurst. Is it possible that Edwin and Rebakah took a detour, on their way up to Rockhampton, to visit Robert Gransden and therefore also possibly Mary Russell, their elder sister?

So then we come to the birth and death of Edwin James Gransden, in early 1863. He died just three days after he was born. At this time Edwin is noted as being a Carpenter. So far he has moved from one gold field, Mt Franklin, to another, Crocodile Creek, but he is not mining, he is in support professions carpenter, plumber, post office holder and later publican.

1864 saw the birth of another son, also called Edwin James Gransden. James is Rebekah’s fathers name which is probably why it is being used.

March of 1864 Edwin purchases some land. ALLEN, William (Vendor) and GRANSDEN, Edwin (Purchaser)

1866 Silas puts a notice into the Sydney Morning Herald, trying to locate both Edwin and his brother Robert, last known location Bathurst.

November 1867 Edwin purchases some more land BELLAS, Thomas (Vendor) and GRANSDEN, Edwin (Purchaser).

There then seems to be a break in specific incidents. However by this time Edwin is running a regular advertisement in the Rockhampton Bulletin and Central Queensland Advertiser This runs every issue from the First of January 1867 to 7th of October 1869. Edwin is running the Post Office and he is advertising that he holds copies of the GOLD FIELDS’ REGULATIONS for anyone who would like a copy. I would really love to get a copy of these regulations and see what they say. So far I have not been able to locate them.

I have an article that says that there was a vote for who would hold the Post Office in 1867 and that Edwin Gransden’s store was nominated as the new Post Office, thus the advertisement of the regulations. So far I have not been able to find any information to substantiate the vote for which store became the Post Office but Edwin’s certainly held the position of Post Office while he was advertising the Gold Field Regulations.

In fact in 1868 Edwin Gransden is noted in the 1868 Crocodile Creek Post Office Directory as the Post Office Store Keeper. It is likely that the two land purchases that Edwin made in 1864 and then again in 1867 would include his house and the shop that became the Post Office.

On the 31st of January 1867 Edwin is noted as eligible to vote in the upcoming elections. To be eligible to vote Edwin must be firstly male, so Rebekah could not have voted, over 21 and he would have had to have held a miners license for at least six months. Voting was not compulsory so Edwin did not have to vote.

1867. Edwin also has the Bank of New South Wales using his store to locate their own business- BANK OF NEW SOUTH WALES FOR the convenience of the Diggers at Crocodile Creek, an agent of the above Bank will purchase Gold at the office, next to E. Gransden’s Store, every SATURDAY, from 11 am. till 9 p m.

In 1867 Edwin also sold two allotments of land. A BARGAIN! TWO ALLOTMENTS of GROUND on Athelstane Range, formerly known as Ward’s Paddock. Splendid Residence Sites. One Allotment, containing two acres of very superior land, with a good supply of water; also, One and a-half acre Allotment, corner of the block.
For particulars, inquire of E. GRANSDEN, Crocodile Creek

In 1868 Edwin wrote a very complete article on Quaertz Machinery on Queensland Reefs.

To the Editor of the Australasian Sir,- Will you allow me, through the medium of your valuable paper, to state a few facts, by which owners of unoccupied crushing machines and ourselves may
be mutually benefited? In the first place we have six distinct quartz reefs, viz., the Hector reef, eleven claims working, and, about 1,600 tons now on grass; the Canadian, five claims working, and about 600 tons now oh grass; the Anglo-Saxon Reef, prospecting claim only, about sixty tons now on grass; James White, prospecting claim only, about forty tons now on grass;: William White, prospecting claim only, about seventy tons now on grass; .and the Frenchman’s Reef,
five claims now working, and about 300 tons now on grass.
Now, with all these. reefs lying within fifteen miles of Rockhampton, one would think that the inhabitants would have formed a company to erect machinery and to crush at a reasonable profit. But not so. In the month of November last, several of our reefers met a party of townsmen by appointment; to hear terms proposed for a machine, ; to crush on the first of this month, at 30s. per ton and a bonus of eight per cent; and as the majority of the men could not help themselves, they agreed to. those terms. Now, the company will, not be able to commence ; within three weeks from this date, and have thus broken their, agreement, put as an equivalent for their, bonus they are going to charge £3 per ton for crushing. Any party with a machine lying idle would do well to pay a visit to this locality. He would pronounce it a second Tarrengower, and satisfy himself that it will pay handsomely to shift his machine here; for with a reason able price for crushing it is my opinion that 500 tons of stone will be raised in this district weekly.
Hoping you will excuse the length of this letter,
I remain, yours respectfully,
E. GRANSDEN, Postmaster.
Crocodile Creek, Feb. 11

ON the 23rd of December 1868 Edwin put a notice into the newspaper that he was planning on applying for a Publican’s License for the sale of Fermented and Spirituous Liquors. The house contains 2 bed-rooms and 2 sitting-rooms, exclusive of those required for the family. The Sign
is to be “REEFERS’ HOTEL,” and which I intend to keep as an Inn or Public-house I am married, and have a wife and 2 children.

In early 1869 Edwin starts to sell some of his belongings.

For SALE-Two Staunch Draught Horses, Two Sets of Harness and a strong Spring Cart. The horses have been working together for the last eighteen months, between town and Crocodile, in and out the same day, carrying from a ton to twenty-six hundredweight. Price-(£50) fifty pounds. A
satisfactory trial given. Enquire of E. GRANSDEN, Reefers’ Hotel, Crocodile Road.


Edwins wife Rebekah has died and given subsequent happening he is selling up possibly to move to Brisbane rather than stay in the Mine Fields. Rebekah had been sick for 10 months with consumption. It is quite possible that the initial sale of the Horses was to pay for her medical bills and possibly because Edwin was just no longer able to keep up with running his business at the level that he had prior to Rebekah becoming ill.

Despite Rebekah’s illness Edwin was still engaging in local activities. In early 1869 Patrick Halligan, the local policeman was murdered. A reward committee was set up to help with the discovery of the murders. Edwin contributed 10 pounds.

AMOUNTS Received towards supplementing the Reward for the discovery of the Murderers of the late PATRICK HALLIGAN.
E. Gransden down as having contributed 10 pounds

The property did not sell by private sale and had to go to Auction.

Then late in 1869 Edwin Gransden is trying to sell everything.

FOR PRIVATE SALE, Those Premises lately erected at the THREE – MILE, CROCODILE ROAD,
And within 200 yards of Gannon’s Crushing Machine, and known as THE REEFERS’ HOTEL.
THIS, a FIRST-CLASS OPENING for any person with a small capital to go in the Public line, with the certainty of realising a good income. The Reefs in the district are only in their infancy yet, fresh Reefs are constantly opening ; what are at work are realising good dividends. To a carrier, this property would be highly advantageous, as there is good feed for horses all the year round, end work in carting quartz, and stores from Rockhampton.
The reason this Property is placed in the market, is in consequence of a death in the family, and the proprietor entering into other pursuits. Should this Property not be disposed of privately, it will be submitted to public competition on Tuesday, the 28th of September.
For further particulars, inquire on the premises.

Commencing at Eleven o’clock, That recently formed property, situated at the Three-Mile Creek, Crocodile Road, and favourably known as the Reefers’ Arms Hotel. The main building-40 by 16 feet, contains five rooms, with a detached kitchen and servants’ room ; also, a store-room
18 by 25 feet, together with a stable and other useful out-offices-the whole securely fenced in.
There will also be sold the whole of the  FURNITURE & OTHER EFFECTS, Comprising
Tables, sofas,’arm-chairs, side-tables, chairs, forms, lamps, desk, washstands sets, cedar
console, dressing tables, double and single iron bedsteads, &C., palliasses, dressing glasses, &c., &c. ; also, a
BAGATELLE TABLE (complete.) Microscope, repeater, duelling-pistols, guns double-barrelled, rifle, gold scales, clock, pestle and mortar, and other useful articles.

A counter, filter, dripstone, drainer, decanters, pewters, lamp, time-keeper, glassware, steel quoits, thermometers, and various requisites, including cooking utensils, and a lot of jumpers and crow bars, and an assortment of Fowls, ducks, coop and chickens, &c., &c, &c.
And lastly
A lot of General Store Goods. M. WORMALD is favoured with instructions from Mr. E. Gransden, to  sell by auction on THIS DAY (TUESDAY), 28th instant, commencing at ll o’clock All those Buildings situate at the Three-mile Creek, Crocodile Road, end well-known as the REEFERS’ ARMS HOTEL. Together with the Furniture and Effects as described above, including
Bagatelle Table Store Goods  Poultry, &c, All for positive Sale to the Highest Bidder. Terms at Sale.

N.B. The position of this property is a very central one, and certainly well situate for an
Hotel, which under the management of an enterprising men would be sure to receive a large
amount of support, not only from the daily traffic on the road, but also from those engaged
in working the several reefs in its vicinity. As those reefs have given undoubted proof of their
richness, and as their working is as yet merely in its early stage, it is only fair to anticipate that
with their development, a proportionate share of the benefits will be derivable by the possessor of
this House, for remunerative returns are now  received from the business. A four-horse coach will leave the Auctioneers’ office at half-past 9 a.m., conducting intending purchasers to and fro, free of charge. Luncheon will be provided.

Then on the 18th of May 1870, Edwin himself died.

Edwin and Rebekah left two children. Ellen Gransden 4 years old and Edwin James Gransden 7 years old. Both children were placed in the Diamantina Orphanage. Ellen died three years later at the age of seven. She had died at school and was noted down as dyeing due to atrophy. At the orphanage boys and girls were in separate dormitories and I have yet to discover if the sister and brother would have been likely to come in contact at all. Regardless Edwin was adopted only a year after he entered the orphanage where as Ellen was never adopted so it is likely that if they did see each other if was on rare occasions once their parents died.

Edwin James was adopted by William and Martha Dockrill in 1873. He worked as an overseer on their property (Tartha) for some years. He met Catherine Wright and they married in 1893.

GRANSDEN—WRIGHT.—On the 4th April, at Brighton-Road-Congregational Church, by the Rev. William Bradley, Edwin James Gransden, adopted son of William Dockerill, of Tartha Station, Moonie River, to Catherine Wright, stepdaughter of Henry Beresford, of West End.

A very pretty wedding was celebrated at Brighton road Congregational Church on April 4. Miss Catherine Wright, stopdaughter of Mr. H. Beresford, of West End, was united to Mr. Edwin J. Gransden, adopted son of Mr. William Dockerell, of Tartha station, Moonie River. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. William Bradley. The bride wore a dress of ivory white crepon, and train, trimmed with, wide watered ribbon and swans down wreath of orange blossoms and embroidered tulle veil; she carried a shower bouquet of tuberoses, and was attended by four bridesmaids. Two were in white gowns and hats with buttercup trimmings and bouquets to match, and wearing horseshoe brooches, the gift of the bridegroom. The other two were little girls in white frocks, with eau de nil silk trimmings, hats of white velvet and swans down, ostrich feathers to match, each carrying a basket of flowers, with ribbons of the same colour.

The bridegroom was also attended by two gentlemen, Mr. Charles Aulsebrook acting as best man. The mother of the bride wore it black crepe dress, trimmed with gray beaver; bonnet to match, and tlhe mother of the bridegroom a handsome navy and cream silk, with bonnet to correspond. Among the quests many other handsome dresses were worn, the buttercup shade predominating. The church was tastefully decorated by the young friends of the bride. As the pair left the church the “Wedding March” was played by Miss McLean, while showers of rice and good wishes came from the many friends assembled.

A large number of guests afterwards met at the residence of the bride’s parents, where an excellent wedding breakfast was served, and the customary toast was honoured. Mr. and Mrs. Gransden left by the 4 o’clock train for Southport, where they make a short stay previous to returning to Tartha.

By 1898 Edwin James was working on the Railways

3 Feb 1898- Edwin J. Gransden Queensland Railway employee- Souther Division- Traffic Branch, Porter. Remuneration was 5 shillings per day. Vol 3 p989.

1899 Edwin James is eligible to vote

LIST of Persons appearing lo be qualified to Vote at the Election of Members of Hie Legislative Assembly in the year 1899 for the Electoral District of BRISBANE SOUTH. -Objections to names on this List must be sent to the Electoral Registrar at Brisbane South and to the Persons objected to not later than the 18th day of July, 1899.
Dated this Seventh day of July, 1899. W.M. HARRIS
Electoral Registrar.
Gransden, Edwin James. Cambridge Street, West End, third house on right from Vulture Street.
Occupation Porter. Particulars of qualification- Residence. Date when claims received by Electoral Register- 4th July 1899.

In 1902 Edwin and Catherine travelled, probably on the trains- 1902 Overland Passengers April 19 1902 Wallangarra.
Mr and Mrs J E Gransden

It is noticeable that at this stage Edwin is putting his initials J E Gransden not E J as on his birth certificate. It is possible that he was going by the name of James rather than Edwin.

1916- Edwin James adopted mother dies and he makes a claim on the will.

Saturday 19 August 1916
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF QUEENSLAND In the WILL OF MARTHA DOCKRILL, late of Heron Cottee, Nerang Street, Southport, in the State of Queensland Widow, Deceased.

Notice is hereby given that, after the expiration of fourteen days from the date of the publication hereof, application will be made to this Honourable Court that PROBATE of the WILL of the abovenamed Martha Dockrill deceased, may be granted to GEORGE DAW, of Nerang street, Southport, in the said State, Carpenter the sole Executor named in the said WILL.

1918 ‘Advertising.’, The Brisbane Courier (Qld. : 1864 – 1933), 11 November, p. 10, viewed 1 February, 2016, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article20255095
Name of Claimant.-Edwin James Gransden, of South Brisbane, railway porter (subject to
the rights of the widower of testatrix). Description and Situation of Land.-Allotment 8 of section 27, town of Cleveland. Estate Claimed to be Transmitted.-Fee simple.
Particulars of Will or Otherwise.-Will dated 23rd October, 1914.
Date within which Caveat may be Lodged. 17th December, 1918.

In the 1930’s Edwin James wins a number of awards for his potted plants and vegetables. It seems that he focussed on his gardening once he retired.

High Standard of Pot Plants
Kelvin Grove Flower Show
The high standard of the pot planst exhibited at the monthly show of the Kelvin Grove Horticultural Society held in the Freemasons Hall, Kelvin Grove, last evening was highly commended by the judge. There was also a choice display of floral work. Awards-
Roses- Red E. J. Gransden
Three Iceland Poppies-2- E. J. Gransden
Violets-2- E. J. Gransden
Lupins -2- E. J. Gransden
Sweat Peas- Red- 2- E. J. Gransden
Sweat Peas- Blue- 2- E. J. Gransden

Fruit and Vegetables
Dish of mixed fruit E. J. Gransden
Eschallots- E. J. Gransden
Cauliflower- E. J. Gransden
The Courier Mail Brisbane
Wednesday 29 July 1936

Wednesday 25 November 1936
Cut Flowers.- Gladiolus: E. J. Gransde4n
Antirrhinums: E. J. Gransden
Marigold: E. J. Gransden

Fruit and vegetables- Tomatoes and papaw (sic): E. J. Gransden
The Courier Mail (Brisbane, Qld. :1933-1954)
Wednesday 25 November 1936

In November of 1837 Catherine Gransden, wife of Edwin James was put in hospital- Goodna Mental Hospital.
She was classified as a mentally incapacitated person. Just two weeks later Catherine died.

Just a year later in 1938 Edwin James Gransden also died.

1938 ‘Family Notices.’, The Telegraph
GRANSDEN. — The Friends of the late Edwin James Gransden are invited, to attend his Funeral, to leave the Funeral Parlour, 45 Adelaide Street, City, This (Tuesday) Afternoon, at 2 o’clock, for
the Crematorium. Mt. Thompson.
Funeral Directors.

From the funeral notes it is possible to tell that Edwin James was a member of the Masons.

GRANSDEN.— Loyal Prince George Lodge, M.U.I. O.O.F.: Officers and Members of above Lodge are invited to attend the Funeral of Brother Edwin James Gransden, to leave the Funeral
Parlour, 45 Adelaide .Street, City. This (Tuesday) Afternoon, at 2 o’clock, for the Crematorium, Mt. Thompson.
By Order, N.G

The Central Queensland Herald (Rockhampton, Qld, Thursday 13 October 1938
Probate Granted
Gransden, Edwin J., retired railway employee; July 4, 1938; Alice Tyrrell (wife of Ernest Tyrrell, engine driver) Herston and Leonard M. Stemp, Hemmant, solicitor; Realty and Personality, 923 pounds.

1938 ‘Advertising.’, The Courier-Mail (Brisbane, Qld. : 1933 – 1954), 6 August, p. 8 Section: Second Section., viewed 1 February, 2016, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article40984736
late of Red Hill, Brisbane, in the State of Queensland, Retired Railway Employee, Deceased.

Notice is hereby given that after the expiration of fourteen days from the date of the publication hereof application will be made to this Honourable Court that PROBATE of the WILL of the abovenamed Edwin James Gransden deceased may be granted to ALICE TYRRELL of Herston Road Herston Brisbane in the State of Queensland wife of Ernest William Tyrrell of the same place engine driver and Leonard Mervyn Stemp  of Hemmant Brisbane in the said State Solicitor the Executors named in the said will. Any person interested who desires to object to the application or to be heard upon it may file a Caveat in the Registry at any time before the grant is made.
Dated this Third day of August, 1938.
W. H. BELL & STEMP, Solicitors for the
Executors, Inns of Court, Adelaide Street,

Name of Deceased Proprietor.— Edwin James Gransden, late of Red Hill, Brisbane.
Date of Death.— -4th July, 1938.
Name1 of Claimant. — Alice Tyrrell, of Herston Road, Brisbane, wife of Ernest William
Tyrrell, and Leonard Mervyn Stemp, of Hemmant, Brisbane, as Devisees in Trust.
Description and Situation of Land.— Subdivision 53 of portion 566, county of- Stanley,
parish of Enoggera.
Estate Claimed to be Transmitted. — Fee- simple.
Particulars of Will or Otherwise.— Will dated 1st March, 1937.
Date within which Caveat may be Lodged. —15th November, 1938.
Statutory notice to creditors.
Re EDWIN JAMES GRANSDEN, deceased. Notice is hereby given that all Creditors and other persons having claims against the estate of the above named deceased, late of Speedy Street. Red Hill. Brisbane, in the State of Queensland, Retired Railway Employee, who died at Brisbane aforesaid on the fourth day of July, 1838, are hereby  required to send their claims, in writing,
to ALICE TYRRELL and LEONARD MERVYN STEMP, the executors of the Will of the said deceased at the office of W H. BELL & STEMP, at the address below, on or before the Third day of September, 1938. And that after the expiration of the last mentioned date the said Executors will proceed to distribute the assets of the said deceased amongst the parties entitled there
to, having regard only to the claims of which they shall then have had notice.
Dated at Brisbane this third day of August, 1938.
W. H. BELL & STEMP. Solicitors for the
Executors, Inns of Court, Adelaide Street, Brisbane.

So, now that I have a time line, I need to figure out what it is that I need to know to write this up into a story and then I need to start writing.

So tomorrows blog post will hopefully be a lot shorter and should give me a list of what I need to research further. Then I can start writing up the Story of Edwin Gransden and his family.

Going through the News Papers

I have been going through the British Newspapers from 1600 to 1900. The State Library has access to the British Newspaper collection so long as you have a readers card. This means that I can search those News Papers for free. They are a fantastic resource.

One thing that I picked up over the weekend was a notice from Robert Gransden saying that his wife Mary Ann Gransden was no longer living with him and that he would no longer be responsble for her debts. This was in the mid nineteenth century. At this time there was no real viable option for divorce. So this was a couples way of making it clear that they were no longer together and that they were only responsible for themselves. This went very well for families where this worked for both partners but if for some reason one partner was happy with this and the other partner was not it could be a big issue. Particularly if the male decided that he wanted his wifes property as for a long time women had no rights to their own property they were subject to their husbands will so if a woman left the man was within his rights to turn up later and take anything that she had earned or owned as his own.

This website gives a good overview to what divorce and or seperation meant for both men and women in the nineteenth century http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/agunn/teaching/enl3251/vf/pres/hurvitz.htm

When a couple wanted a divorce all of the advantages if any were for the men and all of the disadvantages were for the women and children. A divorce would also mean that children were declared illegitemate. Women needed to be able to prove adultury plus abuse at quite an extensive level. A man need only acuse a woman of adultury.

This meant that finding an actual decleration that a couple were seperated was quite a find.

I had known that Mary had not died until after the 1861 census but had not been able to find her in the 1861 census. I had gone looking a bit further but had never found her so had just assumed that she had not participated in the census for whatever reason that year. All the rest of her family had been present at that census and missing someone is not actually that unusual. However now knowing that Robert and Mary had seperated and after talking to another family members who had said that she had found Mary on the 1861 census I went looking. Finally I found her. Mary was living in a housing estate nearby and was working as the Principal at a local school. This means that Mary was independant and at least reasonably well educated. Finding this is quite a departure of my understanding of the education level and the background of this family so it is a very welcome and interesting addition to my family tree.


Things that Stopped me 3

The other day whilst driving home from a trip to get a loom we turned a corner and ran into a scene of some distress. There were about a dozen flustered ducks making a break for it across a road with two ducks lying in the middle of the road very obviously injured if not dead. As we drove past and pulled up it became very obvious that one of those ducks was not dead and that whoever had plowed into them had driven straight on and just left them there.

Myself and the other occupants of the car got out and found one duck dead and then went on the chase for the other duck with my jacket. After a little bit of stumbling around the rather rattled duck wound up under a tree where I was able to grab it with my jacket. The movements of the duck made it very obvious that it was in shock and that it was injured.

Once I had hold of the duck we sat in the car trying to hunt down a local vet. The duck was unusually patient and quiet while all this was going on which also suggested that the poor thing was rather overwhelmed by being hit by a car and was probably in shock. Eventually we managed to find a vet that could take her in and we drove her there and dropped her off. I was pretty glad to be getting to the vet by that time because as the heat of the car was affecting her she became more and more active and I was eventually having trouble holding her. All of which bodes well for the duck in that she was obviously not substantitally hurt or she would not have been moving about so much but made the outcome for my jacket rather smelly.

It shocks me that people will happily drive through a flock of ducks and not stop for them. It upsets me that people still do this with people and or property as well and that they think that this is OK. I have never understood why people have so little disregard for others and for life in general.