View Full Version : John MESSENGER of holton
16-01-2009, 3:13 AM
Hi, I'm trying to prove that my grt grt grandfather John messenger who lived most of his life and eventually died in Australia was the John messenger who disappeared off the 1841 census in Holton Oxfordshire(son of William and Martha messenger). I have found quite a bit of information at the Australian end and feel quite sure it is the same person, but would like some confirming information from the English end. His birth dates appear to be the same for day and month although there appears to be a little confusion through the family links here with the year. Holton records show baptised 21 march 1825, an local families believed he was born 12 march 1826. The birth and Baptised dates correspond as there was always a couple of weeks between birth and baptism. As for the one year difference,I believe the family may be wrong and holton registration correct. The only ship to Australia that I have found that carried a John messenger of that age was on the "Wallace" in 1844(assisted passage) which corresponds with him disappearing off the census in 1841. On that shipping register, if I have the correct John, it said he was 18 years, from oxfordshire, was protestant, reads only can't write, calling - groom (horse groom I believe)and is designated in his certificate as a farm servant. I believe he had to work for a man named Sutherland from Bunningyong in Victoria on arrival. Does anyone have any conflicting information or proving information from your side of the world. I feel fairly certain it is him but would be happy to hear any other opinions. Thanks, Tim
16-01-2009, 9:13 AM
my grt grt grandfather John messenger who lived most of his life and eventually died in Australia..............Holton records show baptised 21 march 1825, an local families believed he was born 12 march 1826.....................................The only ship to Australia that I have found that carried a John messenger of that age was on the "Wallace" in 1844(assisted passage) which corresponds with him disappearing off the census in 1841
Do you know of he emigrated with anyone else?
You will have difficulty accessing this and may either need a friend or to hire a professional to check but........
Most voluntary emigration after 1834 was as a result of the Poor Law Amendment Act of that year. This allowed parishes to take out loans to pay for passage (paying a small amount for passage was cheaper than providing financial support, possibly over many years).
The records and correspondence created can be very informative and are held at The National Archives (TNA) at Kew in document class MH12 - see this research guide (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=292#14)the associated correspondence sometimes includes date and place of embarkation and name of ship on which assage was obtained. The records are arranged by Poor Law Union an then parish within the union - they are then sorted chronologically. So you would need to know the parish in which you chap had a settlement (I think it would be worth a punt at Holton from your meesage) and then work through the records, keeping your fingers crossed. There often are not many from individual parishes in a year.
I do appreciate your difficulty in accessing the record, but this might be a way forward for your research; you have to consider whether it is something worth trying.
Another research guide which may provide further background information for you is here - Poor Law Records (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/rdleaflet.asp?sLeafletID=116)
The birth and Baptised dates correspond as there was always a couple of weeks between birth and baptism.
The date of baptism could range from the date of birth up to (the longest I have found yet) 65 years of age.
16-01-2009, 11:26 AM
I may try and follow up on what you have suggested.
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