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Hawkesbury Family History Group Meeting News

~12th March 2003 ~  


12 March MICHELLE NICHOLS Newspapers in family & local research
9 April (10am-3pm) HERITAGE FESTIVAL SEMINAR Hawkesbury waterways : history of our rivers & commercial enterprises
14 May MARION STARR 'Reading Between the Lines'
11 June TRIVIA QUIZ??Everyone welcome, come along & have some fun.
9 July CRAIG LAFFIN Families & Friends of the first AIF Group
13 August PETER STEWART Jurd family history : 201 years in Australia
10 September CATHY McHARDY Wilberforce Cemetery- history & headstones
8 October To be advised
12 November J SALTER & P KETTLE Research in London & the Home Counties
10 December SHOW & TELL Plus Christmas Party


Hawkesbury City Council Library will be holding a seminar called Hawkesbury waterways : history of our rivers & commercial enterprises on 9 April, 10AM-3PM. Morning & arvo tea supplied, BYO lunch. Bookings essential contact the library on 4560-4460.


A big thank you to Jonathan Auld for making copies of this monthly news sheet available on the "Hawkesbury on the Net Directory" This directory can be accessed for information about various community groups & information. The "Hawkesbury on the Net Directory" website is http://www.hawkesbury.net.au/ 

Copies of the current Hawkesbury Family History Group Meeting news sheet including archived copies can be accessed at http://www.hawkesbury.net.au/community/053.html


'Reading Between the Lines' is the topic for the Hawkesbury Family History Group meeting on Wednesday the 14th May 2003. Author Marion Starr will be presenting one of the fascinating stories from her recent local history book : "Murder, Mayhem and Misdemeanours : Early Settlers at the Cowpasture River, NSW 1810-1820". She will also provide details on how the stories were put together, sources and useful research tips.


Calling all Chaseling & Dunstan descendants! A trust has been opened to establish a memorial in memory of the Chaseling/Dunstan families in the form of a sandstone chair at St. John's Wilberforce. (The restoration of the vault of Thomas Chaseling was prohibitive) The Chaseling family arrived in 1792 on the Royal Admiral & their three children married into the Everingham & Dunstan families amongst others. For donations please contact:
R. Heaton 02 9476 2156 or Val Frost 02 9524 2797, 104 Arcadia Ave, Gymea Bay 2227.


Anyone interested in doing a tour of the Jewish Resources & the Great Synagogue please advise. Helen Bersten has offered to take a small group of interested persons. It would need to be on a Tuesday and travel by public transport or own means. Helen has also kindly offered her talk for an article in the Hawkesbury Crier - June 2003 so if you missed out, make sure you get the journal.


Rod & Wendy Gow have added another new title to their list of indexes. The newest new publication is "Windsor & Richmond Gazette newspaper 1911-1915 index to births deaths marriages inquests obituaries probates etc" - has just been released. This latest index contains over 5,500 entries on 130 A4 pages, copies are available at $28 each (postage free within Australia), and is the second in the series of indexes to this newspaper, (1916-1920 was released in August last year). If you would like us to check this index to see if a surname you are researching gets a mention in the 1911-1916 index, just drop us an e-mail rgow@ceinternet.com.au. If you would like further details on this, or other indexes we have compiled as an assistance to family historians, just drop us an e-mail with a postal address and we will send you out a flyer, or contact by post Rod & Wendy Gow, 50 Ferry Lane, Cundletown NSW 2430.


2003 marks the 200th anniversary of the beginning of European settlement in the Penrith district at Castlereagh. Penrith Library are holding a conference to celebrate this milestone. Saturday 29 March 2003 (9.30am - 5pm) $30 per person/$25 concession (includes lunch & morning & afternoon tea) held at Penrith Civic Centre To book ring Danielle Embleton 02 47327859 or email daniellee@penrithcity.nsw.gov.au


In 1803 Governor King granted blocks of land to over 20 settlers, ex-convicts and ex-soldiers. These were along the Nepean River west of Castlereagh Road, from Yarramundi Road to Birds' Eye Corner. These people were our first official settlers. This is an important milestone in the history of Penrith. Events include Official Opening of the celebrations on Friday. Saturday 5 Celebration Bicentenary of Land Grants Party (entertainment with an Aboriginal group, bands, heritage dances, stalls & displays as well as the official speeches, plaque unveiling, food & lots of fun) Sunday 6 Church Services & Bus Tour of Castlereagh. There will be Church Services held at both the Uniting and Anglican Churches and a bus tour of Castlereagh. For more info contact Lorna Parr on (02) 47774459 or email lornaparr@yahoo.com.au 


The long awaited "The Pioneers of Penrith and Nepean District 1788-1900" is now available. 718 pioneer families in two volumes are listed. The cost is $50.00 plus postage & packing ($8.00 NSW - $10.00 interstate). To purchase contact Nepean Family History Society, PO Box 81, Emu Plains NSW 2750 or Phone: (02) 4735 3798


Due for release in May 2003. Featuring 1,200 pioneers with their details (400pp) map, index & photos. An introductory paper, They called New England 'home', written for the Register by Dr. John Ferry. Pre-publication price of $35 per copy plus $10 plus postage (for 1 or 2) for orders postmarked up until 14-3-2003. After 14-3-2003, cost will be $40 per copy plus $10 p & h. Armidale Family History Group Inc. PO Box 1378, Armidale NSW 2350


Laurence Turtle as advised the group he is now an authorised transcription agent for the NSW Registry of BDMs. For order forms and further information contact PO Box 144 Kurrajong 2758. Email lturtle@iprimus.com.au A number of options are available including full transcriptions $15, Pre-1856 transcriptions $10 with P & H an additional $1. Order forms are also available in the Local Studies Collection alongside the other Transcription Agents forms, Marilyn Rowan and Joy Murrin.


Check out the following new additions to the Local Studies Collection.

Murder, Mayhem & Misdemeanours-early settlers*Cowpasture River*1810-1830 / STARR
shelved at RL 994.46 STA

Isle of the Dead-Port Arthur (Inscriptions in stone) / LORD
shelved at RL929.509946 INS

Hunter Valley Directory 1841 / GUILFORD
shelved at RL929.39442 GUI

National Guidelines for the Conservation of cemeteries / NATIONAL TRUST
shelved at RL383.690994 NAT


Members with internet access should check out the following interesting sites. The Library has free access to the internet, contact 4560 4460 for bookings. Richmond also has access, for bookings phone 4578 2002.


Greville's 1872 PO Directory - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~hcastle/grevilles/lists/abc.html

Penrith Register transcriptions - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~hcastle/registers/registers.htm

North Coast School histories - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~hcastle/transcripts/kathy_pearson/schools.html

Australian transcriptions - check regularly as it is updated - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~hcastle/

Ireland - Births, Deaths & Marriages Exchange - http://www.thauvin.net/chance/ireland/bmd/index.jsp

Cemetery Inscriptions - England and Wales - http://members.lycos.co.uk/jimsweb/cemeteries.htm

Cornish cemeteries - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~chrisu/cemeteries.htm

Gazetteer of Wales - http://www.gazetteer-wales.co.uk/

~ Let us know of sites, that you have tried with (or without) success ~


We have been featuring a section called "Member's Profiles" providing details of members. More are needed. Details required include a bit about yourself, your background, and your interest in family history & importantly the names you are researching. We will keep featuring this article as long as members contribute.


I was born in 1928 at Richmond Newsagency, weighing in at 10lbs with long black hair to my shoulders. Dr Arnold's remark on arriving after the event was "God what a baby why didn't you wait for me?" I was the 2nd child born to Arthur & Elizabeth Sullivan who already had a son and were to add another girl 3 ¾ years later. I have lived all my life in Richmond and my first ancestor arriving in the Hawkesbury as a guest of the Government in 1792.

I attended Richmond Rural School and I must have liked school as I cannot remember any traumas. My first teacher Miss Ayrton married my next door neighbour Ken Price a few years after I started school, I had nothing to do with this event. Talking of Ken Price I played with his daughter Nita when she came home for holidays. Nita's mother had died in childbirth and she went to boarding school. I remember one of our favourite hiding places was in her father's workshop in the coffins. Ugh!! The things you do as a child. My Gran Sullivan was a tall, fairly solid woman, the daughter of James Melville, the builder of "Toxana" in Windsor Street Richmond. She lived opposite the school so during my high school years I rode my bike to school and left it on her side verandah each day. My Grandfather, Ben Sullivan had been Mayor of Richmond in 1922-1923 but had died before I was born. Ben also worked in real estate and was an auctioneer in Richmond during the 1920s.

My maternal Grandparents lived at Newcastle and each Christmas holiday I went and spent 4 weeks with them after Christmas Day. I think it gave my Mother a break as I was a very active child, climbing trees and the Woodhill's shed roofs. My Mum worked in the newsagency as my Father was often sick which after many years, the doctors found to be appendix and chest problems. Dad was always a farmer at heart after attending Hawkesbury Agricultural College in 1903 had a farm at Grose Vale until he married.

We had a mini farm at 219 Windsor Street which extended over what is now Woodhill's Carpark to Francis Street. Here we had a Jersey cow from Navua Stud, often a calf, and at one time on loan from Navua a Shetland pony. In the Francis Street block we grew corn and lucerne for our cow, the milk separated (often by me) and turned into home made butter and cheese by my Father. Where cars now park we had fruit trees and vegetables of all types, as well as chooks, ducks and finches. Dad was a great cook having helped his mother at the Boarding house she ran at Lake Macquarie for several years. He taught me a lot about farming and animals and there was always a pet dog and cat.

On leaving school I went to work in the newsagency. My mother's brother Wal Golding, sho had helped for many years in the shop was drafted during the war years. He was a builder by trade and was sent immediately to Darwin. I worked in the business until I met the love of my life, Vern Avern, whom I have been married to for over 51 years. We purchased the newsagents in 1953 and then worked together for 12 years. After we sold the newsagents Vern did a course in Real Estate & auctioneering. Two or three years later I did a correspondence course in Real Estate and joined Vern in the business. After the newsagents we moved to our present home in March Street. It was the only house for sale in Richmond at the time. It was derelict and we had to do a lot of work on it. Here our 2 sons grew up. Geoffrey (a Dr of Science & Archaeology) who lives with his wife, west of London. Paul (2 different Science degrees) who works at Brisbane Museum, and we have two grandsons. I am very proud of all of my family and their achievements.

I have been blessed by the collecting habits of my forefathers and have many photographs, books and letters left to me, by family members. The families are SULLIVAN (not related to any of the other Hawkesbury Sullivan's) MELVILLE, BARNES & GOLDING. Also Vern's families of AVERN, WATSON, CRAPP & LUCK which I hope before I pass over I will have written up so that my grandchildren will know where their roots are and what their ancestors did with their lives. We are also members of the Dharug & Lower Hawkesbury Historical Society, Hawkesbury Historical Society, Hawkesbury Lapidary Club and I am an Elder at St. Andrew's Uniting Church in Richmond. I am an avid reader and love to travel. We can be seen most mornings walking around Richmond, trying to keep fit.

The Hawkesbury Family History Group is available to people who have an interest in family history. There are no joining or membership fees. The HAWKESBURY CRIER (quarterly newsletter) is available on application. Articles & notices are always welcome. 

For further information about the group or the Local Studies Collection contact mnichols@hawkesbury.nsw.gov.au  Tel (02) 4560-4466. 

The group takes no responsibility for the accuracy or the authenticity of information expressed in this newsletter.


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