PDA

View Full Version : Australian Church Registers



JandL
01-03-2013, 10:36 AM
How would I go about find a Church Register for a couple married in Merrigal (near Coonamble NSW Australia) in 1878? The NSW marriage regn transcription says place of marriage "At Merrigal near Warren" religion: "The rites of Cof E". I do not know if there was actually an Anglican Church in Merrigal back then, certainly not now. Would appreciate advice.

warncoort
01-03-2013, 10:51 AM
http://anglicansonline.org/australia/index.html
$22 fee gets a full copy or transcription of the church record,all you need.

spison
01-03-2013, 10:07 PM
If you are near either Sydney or Canberra you could look at the registers yourself. Canberra has the SAG reels in the NLA and Sydney has them in the Mitchell Library. Because it occurred near Warren and Coonamble however it may be that it is in one of the Hunter Valley registers - possibly Murrurundi. I have seen records from Wee Waa on this reel as the ministers wandered onto the Liverpool Plains (and further) from here but possibly not this late.

Who was the officiating minister and what was the exact date? Does the registration have the notation " Birth/age/parent details were obtained from Church Register No. XXX" or if you don't have a transcription was the registration filled in in two different hands - it will also have this notation? If this is the case don't bother seeking out the register as it wasn't recorded at the time even though it was the law!

Unfortunately there are no further clues about which register it is in (or whether the actual register has actually survived). You might need to google which churches actually existed at this time. I'd guess that Coonamble would have been earlier than Warren but I don't know. You could contact Tamworth Anglican archives and see if they could help with narrowing down the actual register. They'd probably need to know the minister.

Jane

lawsue
01-03-2013, 11:31 PM
Hi JandL,
I believe that Coonamble and surrounds are in the Diocese of Bathurst, but whether that includes Warren, not sure. I am sure Merrigal is situated between the two.

Sue

Waitabit
02-03-2013, 12:59 AM
Is it possible that the marriage was conducted at the home of the Bride or similar, still with full rights observed. Visiting clergy perhaps.

JandL
02-03-2013, 2:15 AM
Thank you all. I bought the transcription, because I understood an agent would record notes not necessarily shown on a normal bdm certificate. I specificially wanted the date of the marriage checked, because children of the marriage were born from about 1868. The trans says Robert Hunt (by x mark) labourer, of Merrigal, bachelor - bride Jane Irvine, spinster, of Merrigal, married 21/7/1878 at Merrigal near Warren, The rites of the Cof E. witness: Robert Datten & Edward Hughes, minister Henry Martin. All the other usual fields had "no entry". However agent suggested missing fields can sometimes be found in original Church register. I wrote & asked how I would do that, but no answer. I suspect Jane came to Aust aged 6 with parents John (a policeman) & Mary from Scotland aboard Exodus. Robert Hunt is my mystery. I bought daughter, Ada Clara Margaret Hunt's transcript dated 28/3/1884. It lists the marriage as 17/9/1868 and says Robert was 38 born Brisbane Waters (Jane 34 from Aberdeen) & 5 other children alive and 1 dead. If 38, Robert was born in 1846. But the BDM index says Robert died in Coonamble district in 1814 and instead of parents names it lists "aged 80". So I presume his parent's names unknown - and aged 80 means he was born 1834. So too many errors to come to a realistic conclusion. I am mid north coast NSW. Perhaps, as suggested I should write to Tamworth diocese. Thank you.

lawsue
02-03-2013, 4:44 AM
Definitely marriage registration Dubbo 2931/1878. First child Annie born 1868 again registered at Dubbo. If he was 80 in 1914 then he was born in 1830 and 38 when Annie came along in 1868. Sorry. It's a bit confusing. Hope you can work it out.
Sue

lawsue
02-03-2013, 5:01 AM
Maybe you should just get his birth certificate, cause I really mucked that one up.

lawsue
02-03-2013, 6:06 AM
Me again. Just found Robert Hunt 1914 marker at Gulargambone Cemetery

spison
02-03-2013, 6:12 AM
I bought the transcription, because I understood an agent would record notes not necessarily shown on a normal bdm certificate. ... minister Henry Martin. All the other usual fields had "no entry". However agent suggested missing fields can sometimes be found in original Church register. Robert Hunt is my mystery. I bought daughter, Ada Clara Margaret Hunt's transcript dated 28/3/1884. It lists the marriage as 17/9/1868 and says Robert was 38 born Brisbane Waters (Jane 34 from Aberdeen) & 5 other children alive and 1 dead. If 38, Robert was born in 1846. But the BDM index says Robert died in Coonamble district in 1814 and instead of parents names it lists "aged 80". So I presume his parent's names unknown - and aged 80 means he was born 1834. So too many errors to come to a realistic conclusion. I am mid north coast NSW. Perhaps, as suggested I should write to Tamworth diocese.

So there is still hope! Forget Tamworth! Lawsue was right! It's almost certainly the Bathurst Diocese!

According to Trove the Rev. Henry Martin took up his position in Molong (near Orange) from Bathurst in July 1877. (Maitland Mercury 10 July 1877) So whatever church register the marriage is in they may be able to tell you in Bathurst. (I haven't checked whether Bathurst has a C of E archives.) The NLA shows that there is a copy of the St Barnabas Anglican register from Bathurst but only from 1876 which won't help if the marriage did occur in 1868. Molong's Church of England was St John's but I couldn't find any reference to this church in the NLA Catalogue. That doesn't mean that it isn't there hidden on some other reel.

The SAG reels are chaotic. To find what's in them you need the small book and then the large book to narrow down whether a record is there. It's not the transcriber's fault if the registers haven't been updated as the information originally was collected by the churches and not recorded all those years ago. I have used the SAG reels and finding the correct reel can take longer than finding the record in the actual film! You might be better waiting until you can go to Sydney for a holiday and actually go to the SAG which is in 2/379 Kent Street, Sydney. You will need to pay for the day (which once was $20) but they will help you search and find things in the reels (or the correct reel). I don't know how much it would cost for someone to actually search and find the correct reel - if the register still exists! Because you can't specify where it might be it will take time. (Just because the registration hasn't been updated means nothing. In the last month I have located Church records from incomplete registrations. I had five to find. I found three and two of those showed ages and parents!)

It may be that Ada's parents lied on her birth because they didn't want to admit that the other children were illegitimate. It wouldn't be the first time.

Good luck

Jane

spison
02-03-2013, 6:50 AM
Lawsue's suggestion is something that you can do.

There's no guarantee that Robert was baptised but there are five baptisms for Robert HUNT between 1800 and 1860 and you can read all of them (with the exception of V18422107 133/1842 - which may be a second copy of V1842871 61/1842 and one of them has been transcribed incorrectly - it looks like this one may be Catholic at any rate). If you can find one that occurred in or near Brisbane Water (Windsor or the Hawkesbury) then you may have your man. You don't need to buy them and if you get hold of the NSW BDM Pioneers CD it should tell you the church for each baptism. If you want to look at them find the nearest copy of the ARK from SRNSW as Volumes (V) 1 to 123 are on film in this kit and locations are listed on the following link.

http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/state-archives/guides-and-finding-aids/archives-in-brief/archives-in-brief-40

All the best
Jane

Tony Moore
02-03-2013, 11:28 AM
Here is some general background which may or may not assist. It may help to appreciate the lack of records.

Merrigal in 1878 would simply mean the main homestead on Merrigal Station. To be more precise, in 1878, Merrigal was still a "squatters run"
By 1886 when the squatters runs were officially listed it was dived into three:
Merrigal Back squatters run number 273
Merrigal Marthaguy squatters run number 468
Merrigal squatters run number 362
All within the Central Land Division


According to Greville's Post Office Directory of 1872 the post town of COLLIE served Merrigal
Page 124
Distance 272 miles West of Sydney
Mail closes at General Post Office Wednesday, 4 p.m.
Mail arrives at Post Town Saturday, 8 p.m.
Mail leaves for Sydney Friday, 6 a.m.
Mail arrives at Sydney Monday, 7 a.m.
Route - Rail Wallerawang, coach Mudgee, 104 m. Collie

There were 3 listed families in residence and there would have been numerous aboriginal workers there as well.
SURNAME CHRISTIAN OCCUPATION ADDRESS POST TOWN

CLARK John superintendent Merrigal Collie
MARSHALL George shepherd Merrigal Collie
JONES John squatter Merrigal Collie

The homestead or main house would usually be reasonably large. The marriage would have taken place either inside the house or under the shady trees in the garden adjacent.

Even though a later generation, my grandfather, tells stories that the priest, parson, minister or preacher would be made welcome regardless of which religion he represented. If you had a visit from a minister once a year, you would consider yourself extremely lucky. The visit by the C of E minister may or may not have been regular or even scheduled. Usually when he arrived all the babies / children born since the last visit were baptised. This could be several. The same for marriages.

Please remember the HUGE distances the minister had to cover on horseback or horse-and-buggy to meet his parishoners. Depending on need, he might spend a few days there before moving on to his next destination. His circuit or visit to outlying stations might take anywhere from a few WEEKs to several MONTHS. It would be very UNLIKELY if church services ever happened on a Sunday!. This was frontier or pioneering country !!!

While the minister's diary would have recorded the births and marriages, it would be the date of the Baptism only. This is what the bdm register shows. The date of birth might be, say up to two years prior, or even more., if there had been no visit. The official "date" would be more like a guesstimation by the minister.

Sometimes the station owner / squatter kept a diary; that is if he could write !

Happy Hunting,

Tony Moore
(Castle Hill, NSW)

spison
02-03-2013, 8:38 PM
Fascinating stuff Tony! We need investigations like this to remind us of what life was like. I take my hat off to the travelling clergy! ("On the outer Barcoo where the churches are few and the men of religion are scanty! ..." from A Bush Christening by A. B. Paterson for anyone who'd like to read an amusing little poem that sums up this situation well!)

Because of the great distances involved for any SAG film that is searched, you should read far further after the date of the marriage in the likely case that the minister didn't take the register with him and made a record somewhere else which was then added to the register when he returned.

Jane

PS Pittwater would also be considered part of Brisbane Water.

lawsue
02-03-2013, 11:22 PM
From the Journals of the Rev. Alfred Glennie, "Among the few residents of Belford I found and an old Brisbane Water family by the name of Hunt". They were apparently store holders in the district. huntervalleygenealogy.com/Glennie
Sue

JandL
03-03-2013, 9:27 AM
Thank you Tony for this information. I suppose it is possible Robert Hunt could have been RC rather than Anglican, and simply made use of a visiting Anglican minister. I am going to try and check the baptism certs for Robert between 1930 and 1945.

JandL
03-03-2013, 9:29 AM
Re Jornals of Rev A Glennie, Very interesting Sue. I will keep this in mind if a search for Robert's baptism reveals a positive clue.

spison
03-03-2013, 8:54 PM
Hi again,
Family search does have a couple of the baptisms and from the search for "Robert Hunt born NSW married Jane Irvine" you can probably eliminate the man named Robert Sydney Hunt born 1840 Windsor as your man. He turns up on the 1861C and the 1881C in England.

https://familysearch.org/search/record/results#count=20&query=%2Bgivenname%3ARobert~%20%2Bsurname%3AHunt~% 20%2Bmarriage_place%3A%22New%20South%20Wales%22~%2 0%2Bmarriage_year%3A1865-1880~%20%2Bspouse_givenname%3AJane~%20%2Bspouse_su rname%3AIrvine~

Keep chipping
Jane

lawsue
03-03-2013, 10:12 PM
In relation to the info from Spison. re Robert James Hunt baptised Maitland 1837. Father Thomas mother Mary. FamilySearch. There is a marriage of Thomas Hunt and Mary Mears 1822, C of E Hexham. NSWBDM.

lawsue
03-03-2013, 11:04 PM
The above Mary Mears aka Molly Morgan was born in 1762 and died in 1835. Also she was an ex convict and at one time was the biggest landholder in Maitland. So I don't believe she is yours. But it was fun reading about her. As Jane says, keep chipping.

Sue

JandL
04-03-2013, 10:04 AM
Am amazed with all these helpful responses. Thanks heaps everyone. JandL

spison
04-03-2013, 8:26 PM
Totally unconnected but ...


Mary Mears aka Molly Morgan was born in 1762 and died in 1835 ... was an ex convict and at one time was the biggest landholder in Maitland. Sue

... has a motel named after her in Maitland. Still somewhat of a local identity!

Jane

lawsue
04-03-2013, 9:21 PM
Yep, totally unconnected..... but what a woman. I only discovered her yesterday and spent hours reading about her life.
I have a bit more to post for you JandL, but less important stuff to get out of the way first. It requires a bit more research as well.

Sue

lawsue
06-03-2013, 6:22 AM
Hi JandL,
Okay, second try to post this. I hope it lets me this time.
Marriage of Robert Hunt to Julia Santry 1833 Sydney ST Mary's Roman Catholic,
Births reg. to Robert and Julia:
Robert 1834
Robert 1835)
Robert 1835) duplicate
John 1842
Ellen 1842
Mary A 1842 All these are Maitland registrations.
As mentioned in an eariler post Robert Hunt and Jane Irvine are buried at Galargambone and registered at Dubbo. I have also found a John Hunt who died 1909, age 72 registered Dubbo and buried at Wongarbon which is just SE of Dubbo. Parents on his memorial are Robert and Jane (Irvine) wife is Annie. Is this the brother of your Robert Hunt?
I also did some research on Brisbane Waters and found that in the mid 1800's the police area of that district extended as far south as Wiseman's Ferry and north to Swansea and I guess that would have included all of Tuggerah Lakes.
I found on the Gosford Council History pages the census of 1841, but it had no one by the name of Hunt. Also on the electoral list of 1843, no Hunts. I found an Alfred Hunt on Grevilles 1872 and he was a sawyer.
A John Robert Hunt buried at Jericho, QLD father Robert, mother Jane died in 1947 aged 77.

Sue

lawsue
06-03-2013, 6:28 AM
Sorry, another boo boo. The parents on John Hunts death reg are Robert and Julia not Jane.
Sue

spison
06-03-2013, 9:33 PM
To add to Sue's 'Hunting' (sorry). It is possible to look at all these baptisms (bar V1834442 129/1834) in the reels on the ARK. You may get an occupation for Robert and an abode. Brisbane Water was more extensive than I imagined! At this stage it would have been very sparsely populated though.

Jane

JandL
07-03-2013, 6:50 AM
lawsue, thank you for your continuing interest. I have not searched for possible siblings of Robert Hunt, because I do not know if he is the son of Robert and Julia. I am wondering why you have decided Robert is their son, and not one of the other Robert Hunt born around that time? The John Robert Hunt buried Jericho is definitely a child of Robert & Jane Irvine, and I found an interesting obiturary on him. His brother,Thomas Henry, died nearby in Blackall. Qld in 1959. Hopefully the baptisms will reveal a clue.

lawsue
07-03-2013, 8:48 AM
Thanks for the PM. I appreciate it no end.
Robert and Julia stood out from the start and after finding the death of John Hunt, parents Robert and Julia at Dubbo, it stood out even more, being that we had found Robert and Jane Irvine at Dubbo as well.
Please disregard the reference to baptisms at Maitland, I have no idea why I posted that, except to say that Maitland was on my mind for other reasons. Please let me know how you go as I think I have just about adopted Robert and Julia and all the kids.
If you need any look ups at State Records, I am only 20 mins away and am getting to know the system there quite well.
Good Luck but I will keep searching as well.
Sue