Saturday, 27 January 2018

#52Ancestors, Week 4, Invite to Dinner

The prompt for this week “Which ancestor would you most like to invite to dinner?”

Well ! There are a few contenders to choose from.

All of my grandparents – to be able to ask all the questions we didn’t ask and to share what we have already found. They’d be amazed, I think.

A couple of great-great-grandparents, the ones we know a little less about. Maybe a few even further back. But I think the obvious one to choose would be one of my maternal great-great-grandparents.

Julius Fuller.


He has been a brick wall since forever, at least 40-50 years. There were all sorts of stories about him, most have turned out to be just that. Stories. Warped with time and telling. All my other brick walls have been slowly broken down. But Julius just refuses to give anything up !

What do we know ?

·         His father was William, a miller. (source: marriage certificate & death certificate)
·         His mother Elizabeth. (source: 1851 UK census)
·         He was born in Essex (source: 1851 UK census and death certificate)
·         He, himself was a journeyman miller and later a miller in his own right. (source: 1851 UK census & NZ electoral rolls and newspapers)
·         His wife was the daughter of a baker & confectioner. (source: marriage certificate, baptismal records and 1841 & 1851 UK census’)
·         They married between census’ and then left for New Zealand in 1860 leaving no further clues in England (apart from a niece and nephew who were named for them both, shortly after they left).
·         They had only two children.
·         He had several mills in Canterbury, New Zealand
·         His wife died when the children were relatively young
·         He may have remarried.
·         He died at his son’s residence a few months after his youngest sons marriage.

The stories

·         His wife died, or left him (and went to Australia) and he needed to find a wet-nurse. WRONG, the children were eighteen and twelve when their mother died.
·         He married again, and this wife ran off with all his money (source: letter from Auntie Hilda to Mum & Dad, Intentions to Marry & church records Christchurch Library)
·         His son John lived with the Turner family down the road from his future wife. WRONG (I think) he lived with his elder brother in the house that later became the Turner’s – and Julius lived there too until his death.

So, please come to dinner Great-great-grandpapa Julius, I’ve got so many questions for you.

·         Where you really born in Rayne, Essex ? I’ve been there you know, no sign of you anywhere.
·         When were you born ?
·         Were you baptised ? Where ?
·         What was your mother’s maiden name ?
·         Do you have any siblings ? specifically one named Henry who might have gone to Australia ?
·         Was that your sister Mary Ann who married your future brother-in-law Thomas Horskins ?
·         Where were your parents from ? When did they die ?
·         Did you know your grandparents ?
·         Were you gypsies ?( your great-great-great-granddaughter’s question – not mine)
·         Where did you learn your trade ? Did you serve as an apprentice somewhere ?
·         Did you meet your nephew Julius when he toured New Zealand in his role with the Salvation Army ?
·         Did you really marry Ellen Morris ?
·         Was she the woman who went to prison in Wellington for attempting to defraud an insurance company after a fire at her millinery business ?
·         What happened at Pleasant Point to put you in arrears ? Was that Ellen taking your money ?
·         What happened to her ?

It would be great to know a little more about you.

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