Family Names

Thursday, 27 October 2016

I am looking for Elizabeth Clarke do you recognise her?

Elizabeth Clarke widow married William Carbis also a widow in 1847 in the Gosford Church of England in NSW.[i]  They were married for sixteen years before William died suddenly of a heart attack in 1863, while working on his sea-going vessel “William & Betsy”.[ii] 

As Elizabeth was a widow when they got married, it is likely then that Clarke was not her maiden name.  Her son William Browster died 26 November 1864, intestate a farmer of Mangrove Creek. In 1865 Elizabeth made an application as his mother to settle the estate valued at £15.[iii]

William Browster/Bouster was her son so it is likely that she shared the same surname as him at some stage.

Possible surnames for Elizabeth are
  1. Her maiden name which is unknown or could have been Browster or Bouster
  2. First - married surname possibly Browster or Bouster - implied
  3. Second  - married widow  surname Clarke - confirmed
  4. Third – married surname Carbis/Carbus – confirmed

William Carbis came to Australia with his father, William Carbis,  and brother-in-law Francis Bassett as convicts.  It is also possible that Elizabeth could have also been a convict however as there are quite a few Elizabeth Clarkes I have not been able to narrow down the field to eliminate those who are not her.

Hoping someone can help. Elizabeth continued to live in Mangrove Creek, her occupation being listed as “dairy” after her son’s death at least until 1877 however very little else is known about her.[iv]  Any help would be greatly appreciated.




[i] Marriage certificate of William Carbis and Elizabeth Clarke, married 20 August 1847, Gosford Parish Church Register, Northumberland County NSW, Australia
[ii] Death Certificate  of William Carbiss, 10 May 1863, Registry of Birth, Death & Marriage NSW, 685/1863;
[iii] NSW Government Gazette 16th Nov 1865. Pg 2594
[iv] Greville’s 1872 Post Office Directory, Mangrove Creek Page 314, Greville’s 1875-77 Post Office Directory Mangrove Creek Page 451

Friday, 21 October 2016

Researchers beware Ancestry incorrect filing can lead to equally incorrect conclusions

Frustratingly I have spent several hours trying to confirm a finding that I had made on Ancestry only to realise that the original records had been misfiled/labelled on the Ancestry website.  

Recently while reviewing records for Convict relatives I discovered what I thought was an original find.  I had located potential evidence that William Carbis the younger had applied to bring his wife out from England to join him in Australia in the dataset entitled “All New South Wales, Australia, Convict Records, 1810-1891”

Find 1

Name:  William Carbis the younger indexed incorrectly on Ancestry as Wm. Carby
Date:     1837-1843
Place:    New South Wales, Australia
Category: Families of Convicts
Title:      Wives and Families of Convicts on Bounty Ships, 1837-1843
Volume Number: 4/4492

Source:- Ancestry, Index entry for William Carbis the younger 59, State Records Authority of New South Wales; Kingswood, New South Wales, Australia; Title: Wives and Families of Convicts on Bounty Ships, 1837-1843; Volume: 4/4492. Accessed 22 October 2016.
(image 4 of 89)

Find 2
Name    William Carbis the younger (as found on page 59) indexed incorrectly on Ancestry as Wm. Carby
Date      6 Nov 1839
Place     New South Wales, Australia
Category Families of Convicts
Title Wives and Families of Convicts on Bounty Ships, 1837-1843
Volume Number  4/4492
(Image 80 of 122)

Source:- Ancestry, Entry for William Carbis the younger page 59, State Records Authority of New South Wales; Kingswood, New South Wales, Australia; Title: Wives and Families of Convicts on Bounty Ships, 1837-1843; Volume: 4/4492. Accessed 22 October 2016.  [note this entry is not for William Carbis’ wife coming over to Australia as a Bounty Passenger as the dataset title would suggest but instead is a listing of Conditional Pardons that have been given Approval by the Secretary of State in Despatch 33]

So what is this database entitled “Wives and Families of Convicts on Bounty Ships, 1837-1843”  made up of?

It would appear that the type of records in the dataset alternate between the following:-
1.       A list of convicts who have applied to have their wives and families brought out to Australia, and looks to be a very rich source of information for any researcher who locates their ancestry amongst the listing.  It is important to note that only the convicts are indexed not their wives (who are listed by the first and maiden names).  The record also gives details of where they are living in England at the time the application was made.
2.       Conditional Pardons that have been given Approval by the Secretary of State organised by year and then Despatch number

The record that I had located was in the list of approved pardons. So back it’s back to the drawing board. 

At this stage I think is quite unlikely that Grace Carbis nee Martins came out to Australia to join her husband.  There are several theories about who she remarried and where she died but nothing as yet has been substantiated.


The moral of the story, take nothing for granted and double check everything!

Establishing which Hulk William Carbis was incarcerated on

William Carbis was transported to Australia in 1816, he was convicted as part of a trio, with his son William Carbis and son-in-law Francis Bassett his.[i]
After having their sentences commuted from death to “Life in NSW” Australia the trio spent many months living on a Hulk before being shipped out on the “Ocean”.[ii]  Finding the details of the Hulk and where they were held proved challenging.  A search on Ancestry in the “Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849” brought up 5 results:-

Figure 1 - Search results see below for image credits
At a preliminary glance, it appears there are two father-son duos incarcerated one on the Perseus and the other on the Portland.
Theoretically the results should provide 2 results for each person as outlined below:-
  1. An entry in the Prison Hulk Index Books, that lists the page in the Hulk registers that where a prisoner can be found
  2. The page for a prisoner’s entry in the Hulk Books

Obviously this was not what the case for results found in the above search.  As I was looking for a father-son pair I focused on the first four records.
On examination the only index entries listed in the above search were for the “Portland”, the other referred to a register page for the "Coromandel; Perseus; Laurel”. Both entries for the “Portland”,  pointed to the index book entry for the Carbis father & son pair on page 5 listing Wm Carbis Senr & Wm Carbis Jun?r page 80.[iii]  There is also an entry for Francis Bassett page 79 on the previous page.[iv]  All three accounted for.
In contrast the link for “Coromandel; Perseus; Laurel” took me to an image of the Hulk Register with a “breadcrumb trail”[v] above which read “Perseus > Index>  1801-1836”,
indicating that this page was part of the Perseus Register, page 80. It seemed incredible that both the “Portland” and the “Perseus” listed a William Carbis on page 80.
To establish that the “Perseus” register page was actually a page from the “Portland” register I scrolled back from the page to find the first page of the Register containing page 80 the page I found was the first page of the “Portland’s” Register an excerpt of which can be seen below.[vi]

Figure 2 Excerpt from the first page of the Portland Hulk Register see below for image credits
There was no break in the numbering sequence, as I went backwards so I felt it was reasonable to assume that the “page 80 “ belonged to the “Portland” rather than the “Perseus” register. 
To further confirm my conclusion I went on the hunt for other collaborating records. On FindMyPast I found a different set of records for the Portland – “Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816” the first page of which read “Report of the Convicts under Sentence of transportation removed from sundry Gaols by command of his Majesty on Board the Portland Hulk Langston Harbour commencing 1st January 1802” This “Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816” presents its accounts in summarised 3 monthly increments from 1814 to 1816, “records from the accounts held by the Treasury Department ... and detail what provisions, bedding and clothing had been provided for them.[vii]

Figure 3 First page of the “Portland” Third quarter accounts 1815 for image citation see below
The transcribed entry[viii]
No. On S.B
Entry
Name
Discharge
No. Of Days Victualled
Clothing
Bedding
2548
unable to read
William Carbis Snr

Aug 22

53

-
-
2549
unable to read
William Carbis Jnr

Aug 22

53
-
-
2550
unable to read
Francis Bassett
Aug 22

53

-
-

Conclusion

My conclusion is that my fellows were held on the “Portland” Hulk not the “Perseus”, for 53 days at least between  1st July 1815 until 22nd August 1815 which is the period covered by these accounts. At this stage I am unable to confirm when they boarded the “Portland” as I have not been able to locate them in the account books in the preceding quarter which may also include a record of their victualled days.

Further research required:-

This “Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816” presents its accounts in summarised 3 monthly increments from 1814 to 1816. To find out when our trio boarded the “Portland” we really need to locate in the previous quarter “April to June” and also possibly the first quarter (January to March) of the year as they were sentenced on the 27th March 1816. 
These records should be found in the same record set already consulted if “Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816” exists for these quarters. However not all the pages are easily readable as many are faded beyond recognition so the task ahead will be daunting if not impossible and will require painstaking patience and work.

Image Credits

Figure 1 - "Ancestry Library Edition". 2016.Search: UK, Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849 results for William Carbis Ancestrylibrary.Com. Accessed June 21 2016. Results 1-5 of 5

Figure 2 - Ancestry.com, "Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849," database and images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Jun 2016); Entries of the first page of the Portland Hulk Register (p.19, Image 11 of 47); Citing Home Office: Convict Prison Hulks: Registers and Letter Books; Class: HO9; Piece: 8.

Figure 3 - Findmypast, "Convict England & Wales, Crime, Prisons & Punishment, 1770-1935" database and images, www.findmypast.com : accessed 21 Jun 2016); Cropped first page of the Portland's Quarterly Accounts for year 1 July 1815 - 30 September 1815,; citing "Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816" TNA Ref: T 38/310-338


Sources

[i] "Cornwall Assizes," Royal Cornwall Gazette, Falmouth Packet & Plymouth Journal, 22 April 1815, p. 4, col. 1; digital images, British Library Newspapers (http://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/ : accessed 21 Jun 2016), The British Newspaper Archive; Ancestry.com, "England & Wales, Criminal Registers, 1791-1892," database and images, Ancestry.com (www.Ancestry.com : accessed 20 Jun 2016); 1815 Entries for  Wm Carbis, Wm Carbis Junr & Francis Bassett (Page 40, Line 2, 3 & 4, image 4 of 29); Original data: Home Office: Criminal Registers, Middlesex and Home Office: Criminal Registers, England and Wales . Class: HO 27; Piece: 11; Page: 40
[ii] Ancestry.com, "Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849," database and images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Jun 2016); Entries in the Portland Hulk Register for William Carbis Snr, William Carbis Jnr & Francis Bassett (p.80 #2548, 2549 & 2550, Image 43 of 47); Citing Home Office: Convict Prison Hulks: Registers and Letter Books; Class: HO9; Piece:8; Findmypast, "Convict England & Wales, Crime, Prisons & Punishment, 1770-1935," database and images, www.findmypast.com : accessed 21 Jun 2016); entries for Wm Carbis Senr, Wm Carbis Junr & Francis Bassett; citing "Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816" Series T38 piece number 328.
[iiii Ancestry.com, "Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849," database and images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Jun 2016); Index Book entries for Francis Bassett (p.4 col.1 Line 21, image 4 of 29); Citing Home Office: Convict Prison Hulks: Registers and Letter Books; Class: HO9; Piece: 8
[iv] Ancestry.com, "Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849," database and images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Jun 2016); Index Book entries for William Carbis Snr & William Carbis Jnr  (p.5 col.3 Line 30 & 32, image 5 of 29); Citing Home Office: Convict Prison Hulks: Registers and Letter Books; Class: HO9; Piece: 8
[v] Webopedia.com. (2016). What is breadcrumb navigation? Webopedia Definition. [online] Available at: http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/B/breadcrumb_navigation.html [Accessed 8 May 2016]; Gube, J. (2009). Breadcrumbs In Web Design: Examples And Best Practices – Smashing Magazine. [online] Smashing Magazine. Available at: https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/03/breadcrumbs-in-web-design-examples-and-best-practices/ [Accessed 8 May 2016].
[vi] Ancestry.com, "Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849," database and images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 Jun 2016); Entries of the first page of the Portland Hulk Register (p.19, Image 11 of 47); Citing Home Office: Convict Prison Hulks: Registers and Letter Books; Class: HO9; Piece: 8.
[vii] Findmypast, "Convict England & Wales, Crime, Prisons & Punishment, 1770-1935" database and images, Findmypast (www.findmypast.com : accessed 21 Jun 2016); Portland's Quarterly Accounts for year 1 July 1815 - 30 September 1815, entries for Wm Carbis Senr, Wm Carbis Junr & Francis Bassett; citing "Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816" TNA Ref: T 38/310-338
[viii] Findmypast, "Convict England & Wales, Crime, Prisons & Punishment, 1770-1935" database and images, Findmypast (www.findmypast.com : accessed 21 Jun 2016); First page of the Portland's Quarterly Accounts for year 1 July 1815 - 30 September 1815,; citing "Portland's Quarterly Account for year 1814-1816" TNA Ref: T 38/310-338; Findmypast, "Convict England & Wales, Crime, Prisons & Punishment, 1770-1935" database and images, Findmypast (www.findmypast.com : accessed 21 Jun 2016); original data Description of Treasury: Departmental Accounts: Convict Hulks 1802-1831TNA Ref: T 38/310-338