Archive for the ‘Surnames’ Category

In a recent post I wrote, that I did not have much information on the Family of Eliza Dilworth and her husband James.

Yesterday, I was laying on the lounge, watching an old episode of Who Do you Think you are (Australia) and I had my iPAD with me. I decided to search Trove for my Dilworth ancestors. I did a blanket search of the surname with the years 1841-1900. There were a number of pages to go through and after a few pages, I had that YES! moment, where I found the below advertisement in 1888, that Joseph Dilworth placed requesting that either Eliza Shaw or her husband James get in touch:

“SHAW: Mrs. JAMES SHAW, maiden name ELIZA DILWORTH, or her husband, JAMES SHAW, last heard of and supposed to be still in Melbourne, write to your brother. JOSEPH DILWORTH. Address, Summerville, Elsmore, near Inverell. Melbourne papers please copy”.

I immediately went to the Victorian BDM Index and what do I find? Eliza’s death in 1911.

I purchased the certificate and find that she was a widow, aged 66, parents listed as Joseph Dilworth and Eliza Ditty. She was buried at Melbourne Cemetery and two children were listed, William James and Joseph Henry.


My previous post of Eliza and James is here:

Molong Express 12th December 1908

The death occurred at Mosman on Friday of Mr. Thomas Quirk, for many years a resident of Wellington (says the “Times”) and took an active part in many of the incidents that marked the early history of the district. The   deceased gentleman, who was 73 yearsof age, left Wellington a few years ago and went to Mosman, where he resided with his wife and some of the members of his family.

He had been in delicate health for the past nine months, but the end came rather suddenly. The cause of death was heart failure. As had been mentioned, the late Mr. Quirk was a well-known figure in the early days of Wellington. He was the manager of the old flour mill near the Nanima falls when it was conducted by the Messrs Kater, and when the Messrs Ferguson Bros, built the old mill in Warne-street in 1876 he became their manager. After the death of Mr. D. A. Ferguson Mr. Quirk became one of the partners and a year or two later Mr. A. Ferguson sold his interest in the mill and the firm became Messrs. Quirk, McLeod and Co. until his retirement.

Quirk took a deep interest in municipal affairs and at the elections for the first Municipal Council in July, 1879, he was elected at the top of the poll. He remained a member of the Council for many years and was thrice Mayor. Upon the death of the late Mr. Ferguson, M.L.A., a by-election took place for this electorate and Mr.Quirk, who was a candidate, was defeated by Mr. T. H. York by a few votes. Parliament was dissolved almost immediately and another contest be- tween Mr. Quirk and Mr. York resulted in the return of the latter by a slightly increased majority. The late Mr.Quirk was held in high respect by all classes of the community and the older residents of the district remember with appreciation the great public service he rendered. He leaves a widow and grown up family, the members of which are as follows Mrs. Bourke, of Clif- ton, Mrs. E. O’Brien, of Mosman, Misses Lorrie and Lena Quirk, Mos- man, Mr. J. H. Quirk, of Wellington, Mr. J. J. Quirk, of Narrandera, Mr.  ThomasQuirk, of “Gladstone,” Bodangora, and two daughters who are nuns, one in Bathurst and the other in Dubbo. The remains of the deceased   were interred at the Gore Hill cemetery on Saturday, the Rev. Father O’Brien conducting the burial service. [The deceased was a brother of Mr. N.Quirk, of Molong. — Ed.]

Other Notices found on Thomas’ death are:

  1. Molong Argus – 11th December 1908
  2. The Catholic Press 17th December 1908
  3. Wellington Times 7th December 1908

Catherine Ryan was born in Kilkenny Ireland around 1800. She married Peter Quirk on the 26th August 1823 at Kilkenny. Witnesses to the marriage were Denis Ryan and Bridget Holohan.

Peter and Catherine had 4 children, of whom were:

  1. James born 1824 – married Mary McMahon. He came to NSW in 1849 on board ‘Victoria’.
  2. Nicholas born 1825 – died young
  3. Margaret (1828-1915) – married George Fell in 1855. She came to NSW in 1849 on board ‘Victoria’.
  4. Michael (1832-1896) – married Margaret Carrigg in 1858. He came to NSW on board the ship ‘Neptune’ with his father, stepmother and young siblings.

Catherine died sometime around 1832.

Peter Quirke, remarried again to Mary Conoran in St Johns Kilkenny in 1833. Their eldest son , Thomas Quirk was born around 1835.

Thomas married Catherine Doyle on the 17th June 1856 at St Marys Catherdal, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Thomas and Catherine knew each other as children in Kilkenny. Catherine had arrived in NSW on the 20th January 1855 on board the ship ‘Ebba Brahe’. She was listed as aged 19 and was from Kilderry, Kilkenny, Ireland. Her parents were listed as Michael & Mary.

Catherine Doyle’s parents were Michael Doyle and Mary Ryan.

Mary Ryan was the sister to Catherine Ryan who had married Peter Quirk in 1833.

I have not found when Mary Ryan married Michael Doyle but Mary arrived in NSW on board the ship ‘Boanerges’ on the 26th October 1857. She lived with her daughter Catherine and husband Thomas Quirk until she died in Molong in December 1876. She is buried at the The General Cemetery at Molong.

Catherine Quirk nee Doyle died on the 21 Aug 1933 and is also buried at the general cemetery at Molong. You can read her obituary here.

The late Mrs C Quirk

Other posts relating to the Quirk family in NSW and Kilkenny:


CatherineQuirk, the mother of Mr J. J. Quirk, solicitor, died at Mosman, Sydney, on Monday, 21st inst. Mrs. Quirk was born at John’s Well, County Tipperary, Ireland, on 24th November, 1835, She came to Australia as a girl of fifteen, and when nineteen was married at St. Mary’s Cathedral, Sydney, to ThomasQuirk, whom she had known in Ireland.

Thomas Quirk died at 73 years of age, 25 years ago. Mr. J. J. Quirk, who was the sixth of a family of 10 children, was born at Boomey, near Molong, where his parents owned a property called ‘Maryland.’ Afterwards Mr. Quirk, sen., acquired properties known as ‘Gladstone,’ Wellington, and ‘Baltimore,’ near Dubbo; and for many years carried on the business of flour milling at Caloula, near Orange, and at Wellington, in association with Mr. Cater, father of the late H. E. Cater, M.L.C, with Ferguson Brothers, and finally on his own account.

One son of the late Mrs. Quirk (Mr. Peter Quirk) is dead, as also is the eldest daughter (Mrs. I. W. Bourke). Three sons survive J. H. Quirk, solicitor, Wellington; J. J. Quirk, of Narandera; and Mr. Tom Quirk, of Gladstone, Wellington; five daughters, Sisters Lawrence, of the Convent of Mercy, Bathurst; and Assissium, of the Convent of Mercy, Narromine; Mrs. E. O’Brien, Mrs. J. Merrick, and Miss Connie Quirk, all of Mosman.

The late Mrs. Quirk was a lady of the most extraordinary energy and retained all her mental faculties right to the end of her life; and her bodily health only began to fail three or four years ago. Very few, people are alive to-day who had as much knowledge of conditions in Australia in the old pioneering days, and not many individuals contributed more liberally in individual effort to the development of Australia. Mrs. Quirk was very widely known in Sydney and throughout the western part of the State, and her funeral to the Gore Hill Cemetery was very largely attended. Dr. Doyle, for many years President of St. Kieran’s Ecclesiastical College, Kilkenny, was a nephew of deceased. The mourners at the funeral were Messrs. J. H., T. F. and J. J. Quirk (sons), the last named being of Narandera, Mesdames E. O’Brien and J. Merrick and Miss L. M. Quirk, (daughters), Mr. A, Merrick (son-in law), Mesdames J. H. and T. F. Quirk (daughters-in-law). Messrs. T. F. and J. P. Bourke, T. E., P. F., and J. P. O’Brien., Misses Mary G. Bourke, Mollie O’Brien, Moya and Helen Merrick, and Masters Maurice and Tom Merrick (grandchildren).

Source: Narandera Argus and Riverina Advertiser (NSW : 1893 – 1953)

James Quirk was baptised on the 15 February 1824 at St John’s Kilkenny to Peter Quirk and Catherine Ryan. Sponsors were Thomas Quirk and Ann Ryan.

In 1849, James and his younger sister Margaret left Ireland and arrived in New South Wales on the ship ‘Victoria’ and arrived on the 3rd September 1849.

James spent some time on the gold fields in Bendigo Victoria before coming back to Sydney where he married Mary McMahon on the 7 Mar 1859 at St Mary’s Sydney.

I do not have any information on the children as yet, nor have I found when James died.

Though I have found references to the deaths of three children to a James & Mary Quirk from Cooks River, all in the space of 2 weeks:

Peter Quirk – at his residence at Cooks River, father James Quirk, aged 8, 25/5/1868

Catherine Quirk at the 159 Dowling Street Woolloomooloo, 8th June and on the 10th, Helena, aged 6 years and QUIRK—June 8th, at No. 159, Dowling-street, Woolloomooloo, Catherine, aged 2 years and 7 months ; and on the 10th, Helena, aged 6 years and 5 months, the beloved children of James and Mary Quirk, of Cook’s River.

My 2x great grandmother was Mary Fitzgerald. Mary arrived in New South Wales on board the ship Maria in 1850. She was one of approx. 250 Irish Famine Orphans who had also arrived on the Maria.

I have a copy of the book, Barefoot and Pregnant? Irish Famine Orphans in Australia and it lists Mary on the index as being 18 and was was from Stonehoyle, Limerick. Her parents were John and Johanna. Her mother was living at Stonehoyle and she was Roman Catholic.

There is no Stonehoyle in Limerick but there is a Stonehall. So my guess is Stonehall in the parish of Kilcorcoran is the parish that Mary was born in. Kilcorcoran was in the Rathkeale Poor Law Union

On the 10th August 1850, she was sent to Maitland. (source: Immigration Correspondence 501659, NSW State Records)

Around 1851, she married Dennis McCormack. There is no trace of the marriage in the NSW Birth Death Marriage Indexes.

I believe Mary lead a simple life, though hard at times, in particular when her first born son William died after falling into a fire. You can read about William’s story here.

Mary died on the 6th July 1905 at Cessnock and is buried at the Roman Catholic Cemetery at Branxton. A few years ago, I did go to the cemetery but could find no trace of her grave.

From her death certificate, her parents are listed as John Fitzgerald and Hanorah O’Shaunnessy. Her name is also recorded as Mary Ann Agnes. I am in two minds about her mother’s first name. The shipping records says Johanna, her death certificate says Hanorah. Mary did name her second eldest daughter Honorah, so I can’t help but think it’s more likely Honorah or something similar.

I previously tried to find Mary’s baptism on Roots Ireland to no avail. This week though I had another look and found the following:

Name:    Margaret Fitzgerald             Date of Birth:        01-Mar-1830Parish/District:     KILCORNAN & STONEHALLCounty   Co. LimerickDenomination:     Roman Catholic

Father:   John Fitzgerald     Mother: Margaret Shaughnessy


I also found the below for a Maria Fitzgerald, with the mother’s surname also being Shaughnessy

Name:    Maria Fitzgerald   Date of Birth:        26-Feb-1826Address:                                Parish/District:     KILCORNAN & STONEHALLGender:                 Unknown               County   Co. Limerick

Denomination:     Roman Catholic

Father:   John Fitzgerald     Mother: Elizabeth Shaughnessy


Also, another for a John Fitzgerald, also with the mother’s surname of Shaughnessy

Name:    John Fitzgerald     Date of Birth:        04-May-1831Address:                                Parish/District:     KILCORNAN & STONEHALLGender:                 Unknown               County   Co. LimerickDenomination:     Roman Catholic

Father:   John Fitzgerald     Mother: Ellen Shaughnessy


Could they all be related? With a name of John Fitzgerald, there is a possibility that there was more than one in the parish at the same so maybe two different families or could this be the same family but the mother’s first name recorded incorrectly? I have not been able to find a marriage between a John Fitzgerald to either a Margaret, Elizabeth, Johanna or Honorah Shaughnessy.

Further reading:



Nicholas James Quirk was baptised on the 05-May-1839 at St John’s Well Kilkenny to Peter and Mary Quirk.

In 1852, Nicholas arrived in New South Wales, on board the ship, Neptune, along with his parents and siblings.

Nicholas died on the 13 Oct 1921 and is buried at the Molong Cemetery.

From the Molong Express and Western District Advertiser dated 15th October 1921 we find the below:

Obituary – Nicholas Quirk

Nicholas Quirk, of Edward Street, Molong, at the ripe age of 81 years, from senility and heart failure. The deceased gentleman was born at Kilkenny, Ireland, and arrived in Australia in February, 1852, by the ship ” Neptune.”

Some 50 years ago Mr. Quirk came to the Molong district, where he successfully followed agricultural and pastoral pursuits until 1902, when he retired, and took up his residence in town. Up till a very few years ago he was particularly hale and hearty, and very few people would believe he was the age the register discloses.

The remains were interred in the R.C. portion of the Molong cemetery, Rev. Father Lawler officiating at the graveside, where many old friends had assembled to pay the last tokens of respect. The deceased gentleman married twice, and his second wife survives him. To the widow and his two sons, Messrs James Quirk (Burrendong) and Nicholas Quirk (Boomey) general sympathy will be extended by a wide circle of friends

My Great Great Aunt was Sarah Baker. She was born on the 27th July 1868 to William George Baker and Susan Baldwin.

Sarah married twice, firstly to Richard Loughrey on the 29th August 1888 at Boggabri New South Wales. She was given consent to marry by her mother as she was under the age of 21.

From the records, Susan’s life was full of tragedy. Two of her children from her first marriage died young and her husband Richard died on the 22nd July 1893 at Boggabri. The coroner’s report showed that Richard had drowned accidentally. The report from the Australian Town and Country Journal of the 5th August stated that:

“The body of Richard Loughrey, who was drowned on Saturday, July 22, crossing Barber’s Lagoon, near Boggabri, while in a flooded state, was recovered last week by the police after three days’ search”

Richard and Sarah had the following children all born at Boggabri:

  1. Sarah Jane born 1889
  2. Susan born 1890 and died 1890
  3. Emma Elizabeth born 1891 and died 30 January 1934 at the Private Hospital Malvern Victoria
    1. Emma married James Richard Blyth in 1926 at Mosman NSW
  4. Richard Clarence born November 1892 and died 1908 at Boggabri.

Sarah married for the second time to John Watson on the 5th April 1896 at Boggabri.

Sarah and John had children, of who were all born at Boggabri:

  1. Walter Watson born 1896 and died 1946
  2. Jessie Watson born 1898
  3. Jack Watson born 1903
  4. Wallace Watson born 1907


Whilst searching through the WW1 military file of her son Walter Watson, Sarah’s address in 1940 was 63 Abbotsford Road, Homebush.

I have not found Sarah’s death nor can I find her located in the NSW Electoral Rolls.

I have been trying to find information on William Matthews. He was born to George Thomas Matthews and Ellen Shoulders at Moseley Village, Narrabri, on the 10th November 1887. William was the brother of my Great Great Grandmother Ellen Matthews. You can read other posts, I have written on the Mathews families here:

I have no other information on William. I have searched the NSW BDM marriage records and can find no record of William after his birth.

Though I did find the following death on the QLD Historical death indexes and find the below:

1963     C4184   William            Matthews         George             Ellen Beazley

Could this be William? Even though the surname of Beazley for the mother is not his mother’s maiden surname, Beazley is though the surname of Ellen’s step-farther.
Ellen Shoulder’s mother was Mary Hanratty who married twice, firstly to John Shoulders in 1851 and secondly to Edward Beasley in 1858.

I need to decide whether to purchase a copy of the death certificate at $28 or not. Unfortunately the historical death image at $20 is not available for purchase.

I post this, in the hope that maybe one someone researching William will be able to fill in the gaps.

Emily Matthews (born 1892), Married David Henry Cooper in 1910 and Bert Talbot in 1919

Going through my information on the children of George Thomas Mathews and Ellen Shoulders, I noticed that I didn’t have the death details for 3 of their children being Maryann (born 1890), William (born 1887) and Emily (born 1892). Maryann’s death I located and you can read about how I came to find this here. For William I can find no trace of a marriage or death.

For Emily, I am still searching. Emily was born in 1892 at Boggabri New South Wales.  She married David Henry Cooper on the 3 February 1910 at Manilla, New South Wales, Australia. David died on the 8th June 1918. Emily was 18 and David was 36.  David died in 1918 and then Emily married again to Bert Talbot on the 7th October 1919 at Mudgee, New South Wales, Australia

My guess is she died sometime after 1963. She is found on the electoral living with Bert on the cnr of Stella and Stanely Street Fairfield. I’ve done a search of the NSW death indexes but no luck. Bert Talbot died in 1980.

I then took my search back to David Cooper, Emily’s first husband. I looked up the Australian Cemeteries Index to see if there was a photo of the grave for David, who was buried at Wollar General Cemetery, Wollar, New South Wales, Australia. I noticed the following information:

Cemetery: Wollar General NSW
• Person Id: 7803230
• Surname: Cooper
• Given Names: David Henry
• Birth Date: 1873?
• Death Date: 2 Jun 1918
• Age: 45
• Gender: M
• Portion: Ang
• Remarks: husband; father; acc. shot

What caught my eye, was ‘acc shot’. Now that’s two in one day, I found that had died due to being shot. I looked up the New South Wales, Australia, Registers of Coroners’ Inquests, 1821-1937 on Ancestry and found the coroner finding was ‘Gunshot wound accidently self-inflicted’. I did a search on Trove, but could find no reports on David’s death.

The inscription on David headstone by his wife is:

In Loving Memory of
My Darling Husband David Henry Cooper
Died June 8 1918
Age 46 years
Nearer my God to the,
No One knows the parting or what the farewell cost,
But God and his loving Angls have gained Dave what I have lost