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  1. #1
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    Default Chesney and Thorburn families to New Zealand

    Hello Wigtownshire, from Australia

    I was overwhelmed by the response to my initial post on B-G Northamptonshire, regarding Sarah Malsbury, and wonder if someone can help with the Travel and Immigration details of another side of my family. I can find none of this on either of the two online sites to which I currently subscribe.

    I have posted a similar request on B-G Lanarkshire in search of the other two families who comprise this set of four.

    My tentative understanding so far:

    Samuel Chesney was born in Stoneykirk about 1839, to James Chesney and Elizabeth McWhirter,

    Margaret Thorburn was also born in Stoneykirk, in about 1836, to Andrew Thorburn and Mary Wither.

    Samuel Chesney and Margaret Thorburn married in Otago, New Zealand, on 12 June 1868.

    My interest is in learning details regarding the travel and Immigration of Samuel Chesney and Margaret Thorburn between the approximate years of their births in Scotland and their marriage in New Zealand in 1868.

    I am most grateful for any advice and/or suggestions. Many thanks ... John

  2. #2
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    Samuel was still living in Scotland with his family in 1861 so that reduces the time to 1861-1868.

    The NZ Archives' passenger lists are indexed on FamilySearch:

    https://familysearch.org/search/coll...on=New+Zealand

    If he arrived unassisted then your chances of finding anything are not good. A lot of people arrived in NZ via Australia and there is an S. CHESNEY leaving Victoria on the ship Aldinga in April 1862 bound for Port Chalmers. He was aged 20, but ages on passenger lists are frequently wrong.

    https://prov.vic.gov.au/index_search?searchid=42

    If you search Papers Past for (all words) Chesney saddler:

    August 1862 a Mr CHESNEY of the Noah's Ark Stables lost two boxes of tobacco between Dunedin and Spring Bank Inn, East Taieri. (No 'saddler' searchword here, I just searched for Chesney in 1862)

    July 1865 Mr CHESNEY, Saddler, of East Taieri Junction lost his calico bag.

    October 1866 Samuel CHESNEY, Saddler, subscribed to the Riddle Fund.

  3. #3
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    Thanks, Dundee 10 - good to hear from you. Your advice is always so helpful. Port Chalmers is in the right area and I seem to recall seeing Sam Chesney referred to as a Saddler in something I read recently. Also, the "arrived via Australia" thought makes a good deal of sense. I will follow your links. As always, many thanks ... John
    (PS: I will proof read my dates a little more thoroughly in future following my previous typo re William Malsbury junior).

  4. #4
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    It looks like most of Margaret's family went to NZ. I can't find them in Scotland after 1861 and father Andrew was perhaps deceased by then.

    Her brother Thomas' Will is online and mentions many family members:

    https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3....-24?cc=1865481

    Brother William:

    https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3....-95?cc=1865481

  5. #5

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    You'll find my comments on sources in the Lanark thread also apply here.
    Familysearch was allowed to copy the registers of the Church of Scotland, long before anyone else was interested, and it can be treated as a free index to the actual registers (to be found on Scotlands People, for a small charge). It shows Samuel as born 22 Mar 1839, baptised 28 Apr 1939.
    I had a look for the other children of James & Elizabeth in the hope that one of them would be 1855 or later (when their birth cert would usually give parents' date & place of marriage, but the last one on Familysearch was Thomas in 1854...

  6. #6
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    Thanks, Lesley, for this and for the Lanarkshire advice. You have provided great tools and I am about to explore Scotlands People.
    Kind regards ... John

  7. #7
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    Greetings John

    Although it's almost a year since the last item was lodged here, only a couple of days ago I chanced upon your post regarding one set of my paternal great grandparents, Samuel and Margaret [Thorburn] Chesney.

    I can probably tell you nothing more than you may already know about their travel and emigration to N.Z., but may be able to provide something more than that regarding their later life in Otago, N.Z., if that may also be what you're seeking.

    We've not been able to establish anything on Samuel's departure from Scotland [or possibly Ireland], only that he left Melbourne on the vessel 'Aldinga' for Port Chalmers, Dunedin on 19 April 1862 and would have arrived at Port Chalmers about a week later. However there seems to be no record of this particular voyage of the Aldinga arriving at Port Chalmers.

    Although a Saddler by trade, Samuel's initial endeavours in N.Z. were on the Central Otago goldfields. This enterprise appears to have been unsuccessful as he was working as a Saddler in Dunedin within a short time, then later on his own account.

    As for Samuel's wife Margaret [Maggie] Thorburn, - we likewise have no information on her family's emigration to N.Z., although it appears that they may have arrived in 1864 and were living at Green Island, near Dunedin.

    I'd be interested in learning of your connection with our Chesney family and will be happy to provide any further information.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Kindest regards

    Neville Chesney [Perth W.A.]

  8. #8
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    G'day, Neville

    Great to hear from you. My personal connection to your family is extremely remote, however, my cousin Julie Lamb is married to a chap named Graham Watt. We re-met after many years around Christmas 2015 and after hearing a discussion on the Lamb side of our family, Graham expressed an interest in learning about his own NZ background and his vaguely rumoured Scottish roots. At this point he knew only a little about his Dad and Mum but nothing beyond, not even his mother's maiden name.

    We learned that Graham's Dad, Alexander Gordon Watt was the son of James Stewart Watt and Margaret Jane Chesney. I can't vouch for what follows but I have cut it from the information I provided to Graham at the time regarding his possible Scottish ancestry on the Chesney side, thus:

    "The Chesney side involves looking at Margaret Jane’s grandparents, as both her father (John Chesney) and mother (Frances Jane McConnell), were born in Dunedin of Scottish parents.
    John’s parents were Samuel Chesney and Margaret Thorburn, whilst Frances’ parents were Thomas McConnell and Jane Ann Pullar. All four were born in Scotland. Samuel and Margaret were married in Dunedin. Whilst it is unclear where in New Zealand Thomas and Jane Ann were married, the NZ registry entry is 1869/8403."

    Perhaps you can comment on the accuracy, or otherwise, of this, please. I will pass your information on to Graham and Julie as it has been a while since we last spoke. I am sure that they will be grateful for any further information (including corrections) that you may have.

    Again, thank you very much for adding to our understanding of Graham's family background. All the best ... John

  9. #9
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    Hello John

    Many thanks for your prompt reply ... likewise, very pleased indeed to hear from you ... I wondered if, after almost a year there might even be a reply.

    I was busy typing up my response but for some reason was unceremoniously biffed out of this website and lost the lot, so am wondering if it might be best to reply by email where I could attach a file or two.

    Maybe you could give me your email address, [if you have one]- or even Graham Watt's as well. I don't know him, but Graham is one of my first cousins, once removed. I knew his father Gordon well but cannot recall Gordon's wife, who was Frances Doreen Dyer.

    Incidentally, where are you and Graham's family living in Australia?

    Once again thanks for your reply ... loooking forwared to hearing from you again.

    Best regards ...

    Neville

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