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Now to Gabriel’s wife, Hannah.

Hannah Reynolds was born on 4 October 1801 in Ipswich, Suffolk. She was baptised on the 26th at St Matthew, Ipswich. Her parents were Robert Reynolds and Mary Milbourn.  She was the second child (and second girl).  She had two sisters and two brothers as far as I know.

As previously mentioned, she married Gabriel Reeve on 14 May 1821 at St Mary at the Elms in Ipswich.


It’s possible that her father-in-law was a parish clerk there. Interesting also, is that it’s on the corner of Black Horse Lane (where the couple lived 50 years later).

Their first child, Gabriel Benjamin, was born on 7 April 1822.  Two years later Robert was born on 5 March. Another two years on and John was born on 30 March 1826. Sadly he died in June 1827. On 27 December of that year another son was born and was named John Gabriel. Sadly, he also died, in 1830. On 30 November 1829 Edward was born, then in 1831 twins – Henry and Hannah (the only girl) who were born on 23 May.  In 1833 yet another son was born on 25 May and he was also given the name of John.  He, at least, survived to adulthood. In 1841 Joseph was born, and baptised on 1 August, so was probably born after the census. It appears that he also died young, at the age of four in 1846. The last child, another son, Thomas Edward, was born between April and June in 1844.

So, in the 1841 census, out of eight children born only Gabriel B, Robert, Henry, and John (the younger) are listed. Two children had died, but Edward and Hannah (Henry’s twin) are missing. Edward also appears to have died less than a year after his birth.  I’ve not been able to find Hannah, who would have been nine or ten years old. It’s possible she died earlier that year but the burial index doesn’t give an age at death. She may have been visiting a relative but I can’t find any likely candidates.

By the 1851 census, Gabriel B and Robert had married (Hannah Wright and Hannah Polley respectively). Henry, John, and Thomas were still living with Gabriel and Hannah. Henry, 19, was a painter and glazier like his father. John, age 17, was a pupil teacher at the Church of England. Thomas was only six years old.

No census found for 1861, sadly.  John seems to have married during this time.  Thomas Edward married Mary Rouse in 1865.  In the 1871 census Hannah and Gabriel were living at the Black Horse Lane address with their son, Thomas (also a painter and glazier) and grandson (Thomas’ son), Thomas Herbert, age 5. I cannot find Thomas’ wife. He was listed as married, so she hadn’t died.

Hannah died on 31 December 1872. (Less than eight months later her husband died.) She was 71.




Sources: familysearch; family archives;; findmypast; British newspaper archive; Google


I’m a week behind again, sorry.

This week I turn to Gabriel Reeve, the father of Gabriel Benjamin Reeve, my great-great grandfather.  He was born in about 1800, baptised on 26 May of that year at St Clement in Ipswich, Suffolk. He was the son of Gabriel Reeve (possibly a parish clerk) and Ann Brown. I have not found any siblings yet.

He married Hannah Reynolds on 14 May 1821 at St Nicholas in Ipswich. At the time of the birth of their first child (Gabriel Benjamin) in 1822, Gabriel was listed as a painter. Over the next 20 years the couple had another eight children (details in the next post). However, not all survived and only four children are listed on the 1841 census. Some, of course, could have been visiting relatives at the time. I’ll explore that in the next post. The family were living at Coytes Garden in the parish of St Nicholas, Ipswich.  One more child was born in 1844.

In 1851 Gabriel was described as a painter and glazier living at 104 Austin Street in the parish of St Mary at the Elms in Ipswich. According to Google streetview this is the address, or somewhere on the left-hand side of the street.


Three sons were living with them, ages from 6 to 19.

Unfortunately, I’ve not been able to find Gabriel and Hannah in the 1861 census. Freecen is completely useless. Apparently there were no Reeves in Suffolk that year, which is absolutely ridiculous as I have the 1861 census for their son, and FindMyPast lists four (only one of which is a maybe, but I don’t currently have a subscription).

Gabriel was for many years a foreman at the business of D & E Haggar in King Street in Ipswich. They were a firm of plumbers, gasfitters, painters and glaziers.   I found this interesting account of a fatal accident at the business and Gabriel was a witness at the inquest.





Men obviously worked well into their 70s then as it was their only income and they often still had families to support.

In the 1871 census, Gabriel, Hannah, and two sons were living at 11 Black Horse Lane in Ipswich, not far from Coytes Gardens, and a short walk from King Street. The original buildings are no longer standing. This is the address from Google streetview.


King Street looks charming.


As expected Gabriel was still a painter and glazier at about age 70.

Sadly, Gabriel’s wife, Hannah, died in 1872.

Gabriel died the following year, on 24 August.


Ipswich Journal, 30 August 1873


Sources: findmypast; British newspaper archive; family archives; Google

There probably isn’t much I can add about Gabriel Reeve’s wife, Hannah Wright.  On a family register, a copy of which was sent to me, her birth date is given as 19 January 1825.  However, her baptism of 29 June 1825 at St Clements, Ipswich, gives her birth date as 6 February 1825 in Lower Orwell Street, Ipswich.  So, a discrepancy there.


Google streetview of St Clements church, Ipswich


Google streetview of Lower Orwell Street today, not far from St Clements church

I found baptisms for the same day from five of Hannah’s siblings.  Their parents were John and Elizabeth.  Hannah’s older brother was called John Shattock Wright, born 1815 and I subsequently found a likely wedding of John Wright to Elizabeth Shattock in 1808 in Ipswich.  There may well have been other children but as John and Elizabeth are common names, I couldn’t be sure enough of others to add them.  Hannah’s other siblings were Edward Jennings Wright, Caroline, Maria, and William.  Hannah had the middle name of Cooper.  I wonder if those middle names were surnames from the family.  I haven’t gone beyond Hannah’s parents so have no idea.

The first available census was not until 1841 and I cannot find Hannah at all.  She was not living with her parents and younger brother in Bell Lane, so may well have been working in a factory or as a servant at the age of 16.  As the 1841 census does not give the exact place of birth, it’s difficult to identify her from other Hannah Wrights (apart from eliminate those where she is listed as a daughter).  Hannah’s father was listed as a maltster in 1841 and 1851, as well as at Hannah’s wedding in 1846.  (The maltster prepared malt from grain for brewing beer.)

As we know from the previous post, Hannah married Gabriel Benjamin Reeve on 21 September 1846 and had 11 children in total, at least three of whom died young, possibly four.

The eldest daughter, Hannah, married Robert Stammers but I have been unable to find a record of their wedding (but they appear in a census together).  They had three children that I know of.  John Benjamin Reeve married Nina Bell and they had about seven children.  Ruth married Alfred Long and had three children.  Harry Joseph (or Joseph Harry) married Ellen Turner and they had five children.  The youngest of Hannah’s children, Katherine Alice, died at the age of 16.  The second to youngest daughter, Mary Kate, went on to marry my great grandfather, John Rose (and have seven children).

Hannah’s husband died in 1890, leaving £245.

In 1891 Hannah was still living at 9 Orford Street with her daughter, Elizabeth Sarah, and a 60 year old female boarder living on her own means.  Elizabeth Sarah was noted in the 1881 census as being an invalid from birth.  There were four widows as heads of household living in the street in 1891 (out of nine on that page).

I can’t find Hannah in the 1901 census, yet I found a death for her in 1906.  There is no result in the probate search for her, or in newspapers (where women are pretty invisible anyway).

I have yet to obtain her death certificate so have no more information.

The same descendant who sent me a photo of Gabriel also sent me a photo of Hannah.


She looks a kind soul.


Sources:  Google; family archives; findmypast



Gabriel Benjamin Reeve was born in Ipswich, Suffolk on 7 April 1822 to Gabriel Reeve and Hannah Reynolds.  He was the eldest of 10 children (nine of whom were boys).  He was christened privately on 10 April 1822.  Perhaps he was sickly?

Ipswich was a substantial trading settlement.  In the early part of the 19th century its population was about 11,000, rising to almost 33,000 by 1851, so at the time of Gabriel’s birth, there was perhaps a population of between 15,000 and 20,000.  Industries included iron foundries, brick making, breweries, and milling.


Gabriel’s father was a painter and glazier.  Gabriel B had three brothers called John, born 1826, 1827, and 1833.  The first two died in infancy.  At least three other brothers grew to adulthood and married but I don’t know what happened to the other siblings.

In 1841 Gabriel was living at Coytes Gardens in Ipswich with his parents and three brothers.  He was a tailor’s apprentice.


Google streetview of Coytes gardens

In 1846 Gabriel married Hannah Wright on 21 September at St Nicholas, Ipswich.  Gabriel was a tailor.  The marriage was witnessed by Gabriel’s brother, Robert, and Hannah’s sister, Maria.


St Nicholas church, Ipswich

The following  year the couple had their first child, Emma, who, unfortunately, died two years later.  In 1849 the second daughter, Hannah, was born.  Two years later, in February, Sarah was born.

In the 1851 census, Gabriel was a railway clerk, seemingly having given up tailoring.  The family of four lived in Barclay Street in Ipswich.  I can only find an Upper Barclay Street (presumably there was a lower), but there’s nothing there but a carpark and ugly (newer) brick building.  It appears that Sarah died later that year.

Two more daughters were born in 1852 and 1854 (Elizabeth Sarah and Emma Maria).  In 1856 another girl, Mary Eliza, was born, but she died in 1859.  The first son, John Benjamin, was born in 1858 and then another girl, Ruth, in 1861.  In the 1861 census,  however, only four children were listed.  Emma appears to have died also.  Gabriel was listed as an iron foundry clerk.  The family were living in East Street Albion Terrace, the terrace apparently joining East Street to Albion Street (so I’ve been told).  I can’t find it on a map, let along Google streetview.  Three more children were born: Harry Joseph in 1863; Mary Kate in 1866; and Katherine Alice in 1869.

In the 1871 census all the surviving children are listed except for John Benjamin, who would’ve been about 12 years old.  It’s possible he was at a “Hospital school” listed as Benjamin Reeve.  Why he would be there remains a mystery.  Gabriel was listed as a merchant’s clerk.

Ten years later, 1881, Gabriel was listed as a commercial clerk at the iron foundry, as was his son John Benjamin.  The family were living at 9 Orford Street in Ipswich (now a carpark).

I have no more information for Gabriel.  He died in 1890 on 6 September, age 68.


He was buried on 11 September at Ipswich cemetery.

I was sent a photo of Gabriel by a descendant of Gabriel’s son John Benjamin.  He looks a kindly man.



Sources: findmypast;; family archives; Google;; probatesearch

Mary Kate Reeve was born on 8 March 1866 at 15 Alma Terrace in Ipswich, Suffolk (which no longer exists).  She was born to Gabriel Benjamin Reeve and Hannah Wright, one of 11 children (two boys, nine girls: Emma, Hannah, Sarah, Elizabeth Sarah, Emma Maria, Mary Eliza, John Benjamin, Ruth, Harry Joseph, Mary Kate, Katherine Alice).

Mary Kate was five years old by the time the next census came around.  The family were living at 9 Orford Street in Ipswich (Mary with her parents, and siblings: Hannah, Elizabeth Sarah, Ruth, Harry, and Katherine).  Five children weren’t listed in the census;  Emma, who died age two; Mary, who died age three; Emma Maria; Sarah; and John Benjamin.  I found a Benjamin Reeve, aged 12, as a boarder at Christ Hospital School with 14 other boys of similar age.  I know he hadn’t died, as he appeared in subsequent census returns.  Emma Maria might also have died and Sarah could be confused with Elizabeth Sarah (I wish they hadn’t used the same name for subsequent children). Typically, the residential address listed in the 1871 census is now a carpark.  Here is the view down the street from the approximate position.


Mary’s father was a merchant’s clerk and her older sister a draper’s assistant.

Ipswich, incidentally, is one of England’s oldest towns, or at least the oldest continuously inhabited town, seemingly beginning with a Roman fort.  One of my favourite painters, Thomas Gainsborough lived and worked in Ipswich, and Dickens’ “Pickwick Papers” is set there.  In the nineteenth century, Ipswich was the centre for the making of agricultural machinery and iron and also of brick-making and brewing.

Ten years later, in 1881, the family were still living at the same address.  Mary lived there with her parents, John B, Sarah, and Katherine (so some confusion with Sarah and Elizabeth Sarah).  Her father was a commercial clerk at the iron foundry, as was her brother, John.  Mary was a linen draper’s assistant.  Mary’s older sister, Sarah, was 28 and unemployed, with a note to say that she was an invalid from birth.  Ruth, not listed, was draper’s assistant at a draper manager’s establishment with 40 other workers. Mary’s older sister, Hannah, was by this time, married and living with her husband, Robert Stammers and three children. I was not able to find the others.  I know that Harry or Joseph was still alive as he appears in subsequent census returns.

Mary Kate met John Rose and they married on 20 June 1887 at the parish church of St Matthew’s in Ipswich.  Two years later, the first of six sons, Harold, was born and they moved to Walton-on-the-Naze in Essex. Three more sons were born in quick succession: Edward 1891, Reginald 1893, and Horace Charles 1894.  The last two sons, Alfred and Donald, were born in 1898 and 1901.  Then came two daughters, Madge and Ruth, in 1905 and 1909.

As mentioned in an earlier post, Edward emigrated to Australia in 1911.  When war broke out, Edward, Reg, HC, and possibly the teenage Alfred enlisted.  It must have been hard for Mary Kate to have four of her sons involved.  (Amazingly all survived and went on to marry and start families.)  Only one of Mary’s children remained in Ipswich.

HC moved to Australia in January 1922.  Mary, John, and the two girls left in November that same year aboard the Euripides.

At first I think they lived at Pendle Hill, New South Wales.  In 1935 they were at 28 Cecil Street in Ashfield, then moved to 33 Kenilworth Street in Croydon.  Again, this is the only photo I have of Mary Kate.  Unfortunately, she’s looking down.


Thanks to a lack of census information and electoral rolls (I could only find one for 1935), I know nothing more, which is sad.  Mary Kate died at home on 24 July 1951 and her remains were cremated.


Sources:  findmypast; Google; Wikipedia;; family archives



I recently watched the latest British “Who do you think you are?” DVD.  Normally the show enthuses me to do some genealogy but this series didn’t for some reason.

What did enthuse me was joining a Facebook page on historic Sydney and seeing the old photos.  I contributed a couple from my mother’s photo album and it got me thinking how little I know about that period.  As I looked through old photos I realised I knew little about how (or why) my maternal grandfather’s brothers and parents got to Australia.  Searching online for passenger lists drew no result although I’d got the information on my grandparents from somewhere.  They sailed to Sydney on the Demosthenes in 1922.  Why?  Was one of my grandfather’s brothers there already?

My grandfather had five brothers and two sisters.  Three of the brothers stayed in England but the rest of the family ended up in NSW.  I realised I didn’t have the death dates for two of the brothers.  While searching I came across an Edward Benjamin Rose who was in a battalion sailing from Sydney in June 1915.  Did he go to Australia first?  There is no other information but he would’ve been 23 at the time.  Then I discovered an entry in the AIF project and it had his father’s name as next of kin living in Essex.  It was the right Edward Benjamin then.  Interesting.  He fought on the Aussie side while his brothers fought for England.

Not having any more luck on the Rose brothers I concentrated on my great-grandfather’s wife, Mary Reeve’s family.  I visited  I hadn’t been there for a while and they’ve changed some things.  I’d read about the changes and some were not happy with them.  It took me a while to even figure out how to get to my mother’s part of the tree instead of my father’s!  Once there I discovered several duplicates in the siblings as well as a mother’s name listed as a sibling.  Fixed all that and focused on the generation back of Reeves and Reynolds.  I looked at the “hints”.  The hints are now useless unless you have a subscription.  They don’t actually tell you anything.  Now that ancestry is next to useless I returned, with very low expectations, to and did a few searches to try and fill in some gaps.

I was pleasantly surprised that the results were quite useful.  Although there appear to be many “Gabriel Reeve”s, I found my Gabriel Reeve’s marriage to Hannah Wright.  I got the details and ordered the marriage certificate from GRO.  Excellent.  I also found Gabriel’s death in 1873 but I’ll leave ordering that certificate until later.  I have the details in any case.

I made a list of all other Reeves with the name Gabriel living in Ipswich.  They might be relatives.  Some of them were christened in the same church so that looks promising.

Not bad progress overall.  I did, however, find that I was re-searching stuff that I’d done before.  I used to have a notebook noting down what I’d previously searched, but do you think I can find it?  I’ll probably find it months down the track.  For that reason I’ve detailed the day’s search here.  Unfortunately, my searching is rather sporadic.  Unable to find results on one side of the tree I head over to another and have no real follow-through.

Oh, I also filled out some biographical details on the Rose family in a word document and hope to continue filling these out for anyone I can.  It’ll be a long slog.  I’m only able to do any searching at the moment because I have some days off work.  The weekends are normally too short to be able to “get into it”.  It’s always so time-consuming.

Enough ramble.  Thanks for reading to anyone who may be!

I logged into ancestry and was looking at one of my Rose ancestors, when I noticed that another researcher had the dates of death and marriage.  I verified the date of marriage and added it, wondering why I didn’t have this before.  I also found a death notice in the Sydney Morning Herald for Mary Kate (and John Edward), so verified that date as well.  I looked up the 1911 census for them both.

One of the researchers had added two extra children to a Rose couple, which I knew was wrong.  I discovered they’d got this information from the census.  The entry for Rose included a Reeve visitor and then two children under that.  The researcher (and indeed ancestry) took them to be children of the Rose household and not the children of the Reeve visitor.  Another census return search revealed those children were indeed Reeve and not Rose.

While at the newspaper archive site, I searched for Kercher and found a few results in the Sydney Morning Herald, but was also happy to see that they will be adding material from the Goulburn papers soon.

I logged onto and found a message from a fellow researcher who thought I had some families mixed up.  I couldn’t see where, so have sent her details I have and asked what she means.

While there, I reviewed some hints and linked a few census returns and BMD details (which I already had saved but hadn’t linked on the tree there).  Other researchers differ on details on the surname of Matthew Darlington’s wife.  Although they appear to have the same person (other details match), one puts his wife’s surname as Malam (which I had) and the other as Johnson.  There are some differences in birth places too so someone somewhere may have the wrong record (although dates seem to be the same).

I had a look at the Rose side of the family and found more details for Hannah Reynolds, connected to the Reeve family.  That’s branching out a bit.

I then looked at hints for Mary Rose, nee Mudd.  I found national probate details at her death in 1900.  She left 1240 pounds, 10s 4d to one of her sons.  I remember my great aunt mentioning something along these lines.  Because Mary had left everything to him, he made sure that his sisters (of which there were 10!) were left money on his death.  I think  he only left it to the younger sisters.  I will have to go back to my aunt’s letter, in which she mentions this.  So, nice to see evidence of the will.

All the above took me a long time and the sun is shining and I have much to do, so I must stop there for now.

I was watching another episode of the Australian “Who do you think you are?”.  In it Georgie Parker was looking at newspaper articles online and I saw the website had Australian Newspapers written on it with a map of the states, etc.  Inspired, I headed to the computer and searched for Australian Newspapers and ended up at the Trove website of the National Library of Australia.  I spent the rest of the evening until 11.30pm trawling through articles in the Sydney Morning Herald which mentioned my family name.  I found several of interest including the announcement of my aunt’s marriage and the death of my great-great-grandfather.  There was also a photo of what looked like my grandfather but the initial was wrong.  I’ll have to ask cousins and aunt about it.

This morning I thought I’d have another go looking for census returns which I don’t have yet – this time on Ancestry.  I had the devil of a time trying to get the correct results to show up as the browser kept going to and showing Australian census returns.  The browser just would not go to to show British results (as these are what I’ve subscribed to).  A plea of help on the forum got an answer which helped and I was off.

For some reason, I didn’t search initially for the missing census returns I’d noted down to look for.  I went off on a tangent from seeing the date of death of a great-grandmother on another branch of the family (from a fellow researcher’s tree) and went searching for her.  I found her on an 1871 census and adjusted my dates accordingly.

I was interrupted by a phone call by the old lady in England.  Unfortunately my cordless phone battery cuts off after about 3/4 of an hour and the other phone is rather crackly.  She’s not easy to understand because of the way she speaks so mostly I let her ramble.  I had no idea what she was saying when she rang back after the battery died and I answered on the crackly phone.  Thankfully she didn’t speak much more and rang off.

Back to the computer and I had been on the hunt for some Scottish relatives.  Ancestry has transcriptions of census returns but are unable to display the actual returns, which is a shame because the transcriptions are inaccurate.  I searched from 1851 to 1901 but found nothing for 1841.  I gained no new knowledge and am still stuck on Archibald Sutherland of Glasgow.  I can get no further back than 1851.  His father’s name is John but I haven’t even tried to search for a John Sutherland (and little other information) yet.

From Sutherland to Allison.  My grandmother always believed that through the Allisons we are related to Sir James Young Simpson but I haven’t been able to find any connection.  I searched the census returns for Allison for 1841-1871 but none of the names of my Allisons match the supposed brother-in-law? (I’m not even sure of the connection) of James Young Simpson.  Certainly one of the Allisons is named Jessie Simpson Allison so either there is a connection or my grandmother and her family believed there was because of the “Simpson” in the name.

I searched again briefly for my mother’s primary school in Sydney (of which I have a prospectus).  Previously I found no reference to it at all but through the Trove site I found a couple of articles mentioning the school.  In one there was a list of recipients of awards or prizes and there (I believe) was listed my uncle.  Another great find.  I sent this article off to my uncle’s daughter in Sydney who has contacted me recently about the family.

I finally went back to my initial purpose of looking for Powell in 1841 with no luck.  I had a look at a copy of my grandmother’s handwritten family tree which has many gaps in it.  She had Powell married to Bright (no first names).  I’d tried searching for the supposed brother William without luck so tried this unlikely search.  I found Thomas Bright married to Martha Powell in the 1871 census.  I know it’s the right result because she was born in “The Poles” in Shropshire.  My grandmother had written “The Poles” at the top of the Powell family tree.  My brother and I had never figured out what it meant.  I had presumed it was how Powell was pronounced and my brother wondered if they were Polish.  Neither of us had even thought that “The Poles” was a placename!  I searched on Google maps and it appears to be the name of a house (the little A is on a house) but apparently it’s an area in Bromfield, Shropshire.  I can’t find anything that actually says what “The Poles” is!  I wrote to my brother about the find.

A huge thunderstorm passed overhead and my daughter returned home from being away overnight so my searches ended.  I had come to a stop anyway and need a break.  Here comes the break…