Search This Blog

Saturday, December 31, 2011

This wonderful old photograph is of Central Railway Station in Sydney, in the distance with clock tower, showing railway tracks in the foreground still in the process of construction.
The station was built over land that was previously Devonshire Street Cemetery, Sydney's second public burial ground.
It was opened on 26 September 1855.
This photograph comes from Wikipedia's Central Railway Station, Sydney website.
According to Wikipedia, there was a Gipps Street running behind the station which may have been where George Mawbey II was living in 1893.



Ann Mawbey (nee Williams), wife of George Mawbey I, became a widow at age 43 at the end of November 1862.
She and her young family subsequently lived at several different addresses in Newtown, then a poor part of Sydney that is now trendy and gentrified:
1864 - Egan Street, Newtown (Sands Directory) see Google Maps Egan Street, Newtown
1871 - O'Connell Street, Newtown (funeral notice son James August 1871) see Google Maps O'Connell Street, Newtown
1880 - Albermarle Street, Kingstown (funeral notice daughter Grace January 1880) see Google Maps Albermarle Street, Kingston (now Newtown)
Each of these streets was a couple of blocks away from Camperdown Cemetery, where George Mawbey was buried.
Kingston was one of three wards created by the Municipality of Newtown in December 1862.
The other two were O'Connell and Enmore.


George Mawbey(2) and Nellie Smith were both living at Marrickville, now an inner western suburb of Sydney, when they were married there in 1885.
Their first child, Ina, died and their second, Elizabeth, was born the following year, 1886, the latter at the central western country town of Orange.
Their next four children - George(3) b.1887, Violet Ethel, b.1889, Linda, b.1892 and Daphne Hilda, b.1897 - were born in Sydney, and their last, Norman, in 1901, at Adamstown in Newcastle, a large town north of Sydney.
From 1887-1890, when George and Violet were born, George Mawbey(2), was living at 261 Palmer Street, East Sydney, near the corner of Burton Street.
It was a block away from Darlinghurst Gaol.
Being so close to the gaol was not a desirable place to live, particularly when public hangings were still taking place outside its main entrance, so rents were probably cheap.
In January 1901, George Mawbey II attended the hanging of part-Aboriginal man, Jimmy Governor, at the gaol, representing the Mawbey family, four of whom who had been his murder victims. [See Google Maps Palmer Street, East Sydney.]

261 Palmer Street, East Sydney
This photograph (C) Pamela Mawbey 2011
Please acknowledge my copyright if reproduce.

In late 1890, George Mawbey II moved to 35 Ann Street, Surry Hills, on the other side of the main road, Oxford Street.
This house is no longer standing, but the one beside it consists of two two-storey semi-detached terraces.
Houses on the other side of the road are attached single storey working men's houses.
The house where George Mawbey II and his family lived in Ann Street was a block away from turn of the century Sydney's worst slum, Frog Hollow, on Riley Street, Surry Hills.
A good summary of what the area was like can be seen by clicking on Tour of Gangland Sydney
[See also Google Maps Ann Street, Surry Hills, Sydney
In the 1893 Sands Directory, George Mawbey II is listed as a 'van proprietor' living at 93 Gipps Street.
This street no longer exits, but appears to have run behind Central Railway Station, near where Eddy Avenue is now.
It was named after a former Governor of New South Wales.

In 1894, George is back at 35 Ann Street, Surry Hills where he stayed until 1912. Daphne was born while the family were living there.
In 1913-14 he was living at Villiers Street, Kensington, in a street that is now about a block away from Randwick Racecourse, Sydney's most prestigious racetrack.
See Google Maps Villiers Street, Kensington, Sydney
In 1919, George(2)'s youngest son, Norman, was an apprentice to a Rosehill horse trainer.
His interest in horse racing may have been whetted by growing up near Randwick racecourse, his family having moved there when he was around 12.


This family history, begun two years ago in January 2010, has become a 'gynormous' jigsaw puzzle with lots of missing pieces.
I use the word 'gynormous', even though it is not in my 1997 edition of The Macquarie Dictionary, because it is bigger than 'enormous' which this word implies.
With the information I have already gathered, I could be quite easily making six posts a day on any or all of my eight Mawbey Family Australia family history blogs.
And I still feel that I've barely scratched the surface!
But I know I've gone beyond merely paddling in the shallows and am now swimming out into the deeper water of the open sea.
It has required both persistence and faith that I will find what I am looking for.
I've set myself a huge task, doing a family history for the whole of Australia, not just that of my own branch of the family.
It has broadened my horzions and made my life much more meaningful by contributing to world knowledge.
I wish all my readers throughout the world lots of encouragement with their family history research in the coming New Year, 2012.


George I and Ann Mawbey's first two children. David and Alfred, died in 1848 aged 5 and 6 respectively.
Alfred died first on 29 August 1848 and was buried on 31 August.
David died on 10 October 1848 and was buried on the same day.
David's death was registered at St James Church of England, Sydney, and Alfred's at St Lawrence Church of England, Sydney.
Where they were buried is unknown.
I have been told by a St James archivist that the church did not have a burial ground at that time.
Also that a funeral service was not held in a church in those days, the minister going to the grieving family's house to pray over the deceased instead.
The two boys were not buried in the Devonshire Street cemetery, according to a book that records all the burials there.
[Sydney Burial Ground 1819-1901 [Elizabeth and Devonshire Streets] and History of Sydney's Early Cemeteries from 1788 (2001) by Keith A Johnson and Malcolm R Sainty, published by the Library of Australian History, Sydney]
Nor are they buried at Balmain Cemetery with their older siblings, James and Grace.
I have concluded that two Mawbey boys must have been buried in the Devonshire Street Cemetery, and that their records have been lost.
They were buried in the same cemetery as the mysterious Sarah Barckley Mawbey who was buried in April 1848.


John Thomas Mawbey, eldest surviving son of George I, rented a store in Mudgee from 1878-1880.
In February 2011, I was given this information by the Mudgee Historical Society, gleaned from the Cudgegong rate books 1860-1905.
There the store was described as a 'wood shop', in other words, made of wood.
But yesterday in the Mitchell Library I saw in an amazing book, Wright's Australian and American commercial directory and gazeteer (New York, 1881), that J. Mawbey was listed as a 'fruiterer' in Mudgee.
This lent further support to an idea that was simmering in my brain after obtaining more information about Dural from Roughley family history books in the library.
When the Mawbey family lived there, from around 1849-58, based on baptisms that took place at St Jude's, possibly until 1860, it was an orchard area.
This means there would have been plenty of work available picking fruit.
Several of these orchardists are listed in Wright's 1881 directory as 'fruit growers' - William Williams, James Roughley and W Hunt.
William Ephriam Williams was the youngest child of Thomas Williams II and Charlotte (nee Kentwell), born at Dural on 16 June 1846.
John Thomas Mawbey was born three years later in 1849.
I am wondering if the two boys were childhood friends, and that in adulthood, John Thomas was selling William's fruit in his store at Mudgee.
Another possible connection is that a W. Williams was at the hanging of Jimmy Governor at Darlinghurst Gaol in January 1901.
Perhaps John Thomas's childhood friend was there on his behalf because it was too painful for him to attend himself.
John Thomas's younger brother, George Mawbey II, was there too.
He was nine years younger than his brother, and 12 years younger than William Williams who died in 1919.
John Thomas was 9 or 10 when his family left Dural, a couple of years before his father, George I, died at Newtown on 30 November 1862 aged 53.
George I had been a witness at the wedding of William Williams's older sister, Mary, to Henry Black at Dural on 19 February 1856.


Yesterday when I was at the Mitchell Library in Sydney, a repository of material about Australia's early history, I looked at microfiche of records of burials at Camperdown Cemetery.
I was searching for the name of my great great grandfather, George Mawbey, but he was not there!
Then I saw that the list compiled by the Society of Australian Genealogists (SAG) was of inscriptions taken from monuments.
The ommission of George Mawbey suggests either that his monument was missing or unreadable when the transcriptions were done, or that his family was too poor to afford a monument for him.
When he died, his wife Ann, 43, had eight children to care for on her own.
The eldest, Alice, was 17 followed by Ann Jane, 15, John Thomas, 13, James, 11, Grace, 9, Elizabeth, 7, George, 4, and baby Mary, just months old.
How on earth did they manage?
I have just found some interesting information in Wikipedia webpage on Newtown.
It says that of the 15,000 burials in Camperdown Cemetery, approximatelyt half were paupers in unmarked graves, and often communal graves in cases of epidemics like measles.
Perhaps my great great grandfather died a pauper!
His occupation on his death certificate is 'dealer', a buyer and seller of goods.


Yesterday, while doing some research at the Mitchell Library in Sydney about Dural where my Mawbey ancestors once lived, I came across some more 'McCulloch's.
Percy Vernon McCulloch, who on 28-3-1887 sold two lots of land in Dural to James Roughley II;
Ella McCulloch, who was the second wife of Percy Wilfred Roughley (b.1890).
The Roughley's were a large and established family in the district who had farms and orchards.
They were predominantly Methodist, but some were Church of England.
The family forebears were two male convicts, Joseph and his second son James I, weavers, convicted of stealing cloth, convicted at Lancaster Quarter Sessions on 10 April 1817 and arriving in Sydney on 14 October 1818.
Lawrence Mawby married Ann McCulloch in Sydney in 1847 before moving to Queensland

Friday, December 30, 2011


Lawrence Mawby (aka Mawbey) arrived in the colony of New South Wales from London on the Walmer Castle on 23 December 1846.
He was travelling with a Mr J Mawby.
According to NSW State Records, they came as 'unassisted arrivals', i.e they paid their own way.
In 1847, he married Ann McCulloch at St James Church of England, Sydney.
In September 1847 he was running a Livery Commission Stables in Pitt Street, Sydney near today's Park Street and the Sydney Town Hall.

The Sydney Morning Herald, Tuesday 7 September 1847
LAWRENCE MAWBY, late of Darlinghurst, begs most respectfully to inform his friends, the public, and gentlemen visiting Sydney that he has taken those capacious and convenient premises lately occupied by Mr. Mark Dixon, as Livery Stables, and opened the same as Livery and Bait Stables, upon the same principal as "Elmore's, of the Edgeware Road, London," and in soliciting the patronage of gentlemen, he begs to assure them that the most guarded and careful attention will be paid to all horses standing at livery as well as bait. The terms will be found to be most reasonable upon trial.
N.B.-Saddle horses ; gigs, to be let on hire ; horses broken in, to single and double harness, &c, &c. 3852 [Source:]
The Sydney Morning Herald, Thursday 6 January 1848
FOR SALE; a handsome light Carriage, adapted for one or two horses ; also, a set of splendid double Harness, all nearly new. It will be sold quite a bargain, the present owner having no further use for it. Apply to Mawby 's Livery Stables. Pitt street. 316 [Source:]
On 19 February 1848, he was sequestered for insolvency.
At that time he was living in Pitt Street and was a horse dealer.
He and his wife then moved to Queensland [via New Zealand and England].
[For more about the Queensland Mawbys, click on the Mawbey Family Australia-Queensland link in the sidebar of this blog.]

Thursday, December 29, 2011


In September 1872, it was reported in a Sydney newspaper that a J Mawbey subscribed to the construction of St Stephens Church of England then underway on land formerly belonging to Camperdown Cemetery at Newtown.
George Mawbey, the forebear of the NSW Mawbeys, was buried there in 1862.
The Bishop of Sydney contributed sixty pounds (60.0.0).
J Mawbey gave five pounds (5.0.0).
George Mawbey's son, James, died in 1871 at age 19, so the subscriber must have been his older brother, John Thomas Mawbey, who was then 23.
He was only 13 when his father died.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 23 September 1872
The proprietors of the above Cemetery, on its being closed by Act of Parliament, made it over to the Bishop of Sydney as a site for a church for the parish of St. Stephen, Newtown, on the condition that tho parish should covenant to keep the ground in order, and preserve the graves and monuments from desecration.
This the parish has consented to, and the land has been transforred to trustees, who have commenced the erection of a church worthy of such a site; but as it is impossible to collect the necessary amount in the parish, and the friends of the dead interred therein have a great interest in maintaining the ground in good order, it baa been determined that an appeal shall be made to them for assistance in completing the undertaking.
A oomparatively small sum from each will accomplish the project.
The church is estimated to cost EIGHT THOUSAND POUNDS, half of which sum has already been promised ; and the walls of the edifice are now rising, and are well worth the inspection of all who are interested in the work.
Tbe members of the Church of England resident in the parish of St. Stephen are estimated at about 3000 souls.
They are for the most part of the labouring and poorer classes.
The present Church accommodation is of a temporary character, and is quite inefficient to meet the wants of the parishioners.
Hence a large number of the poorer members of tho Church, and the whole of the 600 Sunday-school children, are practically excluded from the Sunday services.
To supply this deficiency, a new and more commodious building is in process of erection in the "CAMPERDOWN CEMETERY," in which it has been determined that one-half of the sittings shall be FREE and UNAPPROPRIATED.
The walls are up 17 feet, and the Building Committee are anxious to proceed with the next contract, which is to complete the walls and put on the roof, but are hindered by want of funds ; they therefore appeal to their fellow-churchmen in tho colony, and ESPECIALLY TO THOSE WHO HAVE FRIENDS OR RELATIONS INTERRED WITHIN THE CAMPERDOWN CEMETERY, for assistance in carrying out this great work.
The following contributions have been already subscribed, and are gratefully acknowledged...
St Stephen's, 5th September 1872.

Monday, December 26, 2011


According to NSW State Records Depasturing Licences index, a Thomas Williams of Castle Hill was granted a licence on 14-1-1837 in the district of Yass.
Two years later, on 3-12-1839, a Thomas Williams of Castle Hill, Parramatta was granted a licence for land on the Lachlan River called 'Bogolong'.
On 2-9-1842, a Thomas Williams of Dooral (Dural) was granted another licence for 'Bogolong'.
His residence is given as 'Bogolong' in 1840, 1841, 1844 and 1845.


One of the intriguing things I've discovered researching family history is that information often comes obliquely, from an unexpected source.
This happened recently when I found a geanealogy webpage (Black & Williams Families Dural) about Mary Black (nee Williams) at whose wedding my great great grandfather, George Mawbey, was a witness while living at Dural.
George's wife and my great great grandmother was Ann Williams and I was wondering if there was a family connection between her and Mary.
So I contacted the author of the website - a great great grandaughter of Mary Black (nee Williams) -  and was told there was not.
I did learn, however, the names of Mary's parents - Thomas and Charlotte (nee Kentwell) - and that they had married at St John's Church of England at Parramatta in 1820.
Then I came across a digitalised newspaper advertisement from The Empire, Monday 2 April 1855 with a list of subscribers to the Patriotic Fund, set up to assist British widows and orphans of men fighting against Russia in the Crimean War.
The list contained many of the names I already knew:
  • Thomas Williams II, his wife and three daughters, including Mary.
  • Henry and John Black (Mary married the former and the latter was a witness at her wedding)
  • G (George) T and Charles Hunt (the former was a witness at the wedding and also Mary's brother-in-law having married to her older sister, Elizabeth, in 1842)
  • George Mawbey (a witness at the wedding)
  • Joseph and James Roughley, pioneers of the district
Thomas Williams II and his wife each contributed one pound one shilling (a guinea) and each of their three daughters, £0 2 6 (2s 6p).
George Mawbey's contribution was also £0 2 6 (2s.6p).
G T Hunt's was £2 2 0 (2 guineas).
Two of the contributors to the Patriotic Fund in the nearby district of Castle Hill were:
  • John Williams (eldest son of Thomas Williams II; b.1822)
  • John Kentwell (younger brother of Thomas Williams II's wife, Charlotte)
I am wondering if Thomas Williams I (b.1798) was Ann Williams' uncle, an older brother of her father, David.
And if this might be why the Mawbey's first child to be christened at Dural was named John Thomas.
Coincidentally, Mary and Henry Black's first child was also named John Thomas,  after Henry's father, John, and Mary's father, Thomas.
I'll see if I can track down David Williams and his parents on


I have just found the online index of burials at the old Balmain Cemetery in Sydney where my great great aunt, GRACE MAWBEY, was laid to rest at the tender age of 27.
Much to my surprise, her name has been misspelt as 'MORBEY'.
The Sydney Morning Herald, Tuesday 6 January 1880
The FRIENDS of Mrs Ann MAWBEY are respectfully invited to attend the funeral of her late beloved DAUGHTER, Grace, to move from her residence, Albermarle street, Kingston. THIS (Tuesday) AFTERNOON at 3 o'clock, for Balmain cemetery. CHARLES BOOTS, Undertaker, Hordern street, Newtown.

There is also a James 'MAWBEY' on the list, buried in 1871.
He was Grace's older brother, baptised at Dural, where the family was living then, in 1851.
Like his sister, he too died young at the age of 19.
The Sydney Morning Herald, Wednesday 6 September 1871
MAWBEY—August 4, at the residence of his mother, O'Connell-street, Newtown, James, fifth son of the late George Mawbey, aged 19 years.

The father of James and Grace, George Mawbey, died of apoplexy (stroke) in on 30 November 1862 at the age of 53.
He was buried in Camperdown Cemetery at what is today the inner city suburb of Newtown, Sydney.
I will go and have a look at the actual burials register at Leichhardt Municipal Library after the holiday period.
Balmain Cemetery was located in what is today the inner Sydney suburb Leichhardt.
However, the municipality would have been Balmain.
Today Balmain is another inner city suburb situated on a headland inside Sydney Harbour.
Balmain Cemetery was on the corner of Norton and William Streets, Leichhardt, and is now a public park.
Update 18-1-12
Today I discovered that my local library has microfiche for the Record of Internments at Balmain Cemetery.
The information I obtained from them will save me a trip to Leichhardt Library.
James was interred first, on 5 August 1871, in a 'selected grave', 3 x 7, No. 1530, undertaker Mr H Mitchell.
There is a number written in the 'remarks' column, cross-referencing to the grave of Grace who died nine years later in 1880.
Her grave, No. 5140, bore the same details as her brother's.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


In the 1840s when George Mawbey and his family lived at Dural, it was officially part the district of Parramatta and Windsor.
Newspaper reports in The Sydney Morning Herald describe it as a 'secluded' and 'long neglected' district.
Today it is quite a wealthy satellite suburb of Sydney with large homes built on acreage.
The Church of England had built a diocesan school there, and in 1843 its Master and Mistress were Mr and Mrs Stephens.
Their school was described in one newspaper article as 'a blessing to the wild and irreligious community by which their neighbourhood is surrounded'.

Monday, December 19, 2011


I want to start looking at William Mawbey who arrived as a convict in the penal colony of New South Wales in 1840.
This was the same year as George Mawbey and his wife Ann returned from Adelaide to Sydney.
I have been told by a Candy family historian that William was the older brother of Henry MAWBEY, the forebear of the 'Victorian Mawbeys'.
They had the same father, William, but different mothers, both with the same maiden name, Billing(s).
William's mother was Hannah and Henry's was Mary Billing(s).
Possibly the first wife, Hannah, died, and the widower William I then married her sister.
William II was tried in Surrey, the same English county George Mawbey is said to have come from (on his death certificate), and they were both around the same age.
I made this entry about him on my original Mawbey Family Australia blog under the heading MAWBEY/MAWBEY CONVICTS on 2-2-2010:
  • Convicted of stealing a cloak at Surrey Quarter Sessions;
  • sentenced for a term of seven years, the standard sentence for transportation;
  • left England 10 October 1839;
  • arrived in penal colony of New South Wales 1840;
  • one of 230 male convicts on board the ship Woodbridge.
  • born c.1808 in Surrey, England;
  • occupation butcher [same as his younger brother, Henry, who was living in Melbourne in 1840];
  • married,
  • Protestant,
  • 5 ft 6 1/4 inches tall.
  • No former convictions.[Source: State Library of Queensland, Convict Transportation Registeries Database]
On 4 May 1846 he was granted a Certificate of Freedom.[Source: NSW State Records Index to Certificates of Freedom]
The only record in the NSW Births Deaths and Marriages indexes that may pertain to him is the birth of a Mary A to William and Ann Mawby (not Mawbey) in 1847.
I did find a baptism for a Mary Ann Mawbey at St Philip's Church of England around this time, but have to find it again.

Update 28-1-12
Mary Ann, daughter of William and Ann Mawby, was christened at St Philip's Church of England on 21 February 1847.
There is no marriage registered for a William and Ann Mawbey at this time in the NSW Births Deaths and Marriages.
As he was already married when he was convicted in England before being transported, his wife may have come to the colony to be with him.
After the birth of their first child, the couple then moved to Melbourne to be with William's younger brother.
Sarah Barckley Mawbey who died 12-4-184(6) aged 8 months (b. September 1845) and was buried in the old Devonshire Street Cemetery may have been his child.