Author Topic: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund  (Read 5893 times)

Offline AuntyGene

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Hi

I have been searching for a long time but without any luck.  I am trying to find out as much as possible on my Gt Gt Gt Grandmother who was born in Copenhagen, Denmark of noble birth but married a commoner there and moved back to Edinburgh with him, where they had 11 children togther.

Her name was Countess Wilhelmina Fredericka Hedwig Platen Hallermunde and she was born on the 25 February 1798 in Copenhagen, Denmark. Her family is linked to King George I and the House of Hanover.  Her father was Count Heinrich Ludwig Joachim Platen Hallermunde, Born 1749 in Copenhagen died 1822. Her mother was Anna Sabine Dorothea Alstrup B1761 and died 1831. Wilhelmina married British Consul, Francis Garden Denovan,with whom she remained until their deaths in Edinburgh.
     
From the date of her marriage, it appears that Wilhelmina may have had to got married as their first child arrived in 1815, same year they married in Sept. I found a sketch of Wilhelmina on a fine arts website, being sold at Bonhams in London.  Wilhelmina and Francis went on to have 11 children, all born in Edinburgh.  I believe that Francis was buried in Grey Friars Cemetery but the headstone long gone, died 7 Feb 1860at 35 Constitution Street, Leith. I would love to know where Wilhelmina is buried.  She died on the 30 November 1861 at East London Street.  I have found the family on most of the censuses and it appeared that they lived at various addresses in Edinburgh and Leith.  Francis Garden Denovan, husband of Wilhelmina was a well know man in Edinburgh, being some kind of British Consul to Copenhagen, he was also a shipping merchant. I was told that the family were very wealthy and did alot for the poor people of Leith but there were a few scandals,which resulted in the Denovan family leaving Edinburgh and moving to the Liverpool areas, around West Derby.

I would love to know more on the Countess and what she did in Edinburgh and most importantly, where she is buried.  If you wish to have the names and birth dates of all their children, I have them here.

Any help on this family would be brilliant, many thanks

Aunty Gene

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Offline tina morana

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Re: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund
« Reply #1 on: Saturday 29 September 12 09:12 BST (UK) »
Hi Aunty Gene
Fantastic and interesting post!
Lovely portrait, thank you.
Cannot imagine her having 11 children, amazing.
Just to say good luck with your search.
I'm sure the genies here will be of help.
Tinam  :)
Cornthwaite, Morana, Pearce, Gaffney, Hazlehurst, Milburn
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Offline AuntyGene

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Re: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund
« Reply #2 on: Saturday 29 September 12 09:28 BST (UK) »
Hi Tinam

Thank you ! Yes, this side of the family are very interesting.  The Countess's family can be traced back to King George I and his half sister and also to many royal families of Europe, Russian, German etc.  However, I would like to know what she got up to in Edinburgh.  I was so lucky to find the sketch, after ten years of searching for a picture of her, something made me type her name in on Google that day and by chance, her sketch in a brooch was being placed for sale at Bonhams Auctioneers in London.  A member of my family got in touch with them to see if we could contact the person selling or buying the brooch, with no luck so far. We dont think he was a relation, he just liked the sketch.  We believe it was taken on her wedding day, she was 17 and we think pregnant.  We know that she married beneath herself and her standing at the time as she lived with her family at or near the Royal Palace in Copenhagen.  We have been told that she or her mother were ladies in waiting to the Danish Queen. After her marriage, she settled in Edinburgh with Francis and had 11 children.  What does interest me is that Frances cheated on Wilhelmina in that he apparently had a son to another woman called Margaret Dixon or Campbell in about 1829.  This son claims his father was Francis, and was educated in Invararity and in 1852 heard of the gold fever in Victoria Australia, and sailed for 6 months on a ship out of Liverpool and settled in Bendigo, Victoria. He became an important person in that town,being promoted to Town Clerk there and he did alot for the gold miner's rights.  He even has a road named after him. I would love to know more about his claim to being the illigitamate son of Frances, as he boasts quite openly that he was his father and also that his morther, Margaret was married to him!  All at the same time as Wilhelmina was producing his 11 children.  Oh dear. However, Wilhelmina's own royal lineage is enviable and interesting and through Wikipedia, I was able to find out alot and see some lovely paintings of members of her family.
I am hoping one of the Edinburgh researchers on here can help find out more about the Countess.

Aunty Gene

Offline Unė kthimi i papenduar

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Re: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund
« Reply #3 on: Saturday 29 September 12 10:28 BST (UK) »
Wilhelmine died  30th January 1869 aged 71 and there is a memorial at Clunyhill Forres - no doubt buried there.

This is Stone Number 0520 from Clunyhill

Stone No   Surname   Forenames   Maiden Surname   Death Year   Comments
0520   Denovan   Christiania   ?   -   -
0520   Denovan   Francis Garden   -   -   British Consul at Copenhagen
0520   Denovan   Wilhelmine   Platen Hallermunde   -   Countess.
0520   Platen-Denovan   J.   -   1918   Formerly of Edinburgh

Offline MonicaL

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Re: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund
« Reply #4 on: Saturday 29 September 12 10:39 BST (UK) »
That is great info, Unė kthimi i papenduar  :)


...What does interest me is that Frances cheated on Wilhelmina in that he apparently had a son to another woman called Margaret Dixon or Campbell in about 1829.  This son claims his father was Francis, and was educated in Invararity and in 1852 heard of the gold fever in Victoria Australia, and sailed for 6 months on a ship out of Liverpool and settled in Bendigo, Victoria. He became an important person in that town,being promoted to Town Clerk there and he did alot for the gold miner's rights.  He even has a road named after him. I would love to know more about his claim to being the illigitamate son of Frances, as he boasts quite openly that he was his father and also that his morther, Margaret was married to him!  All at the same time as Wilhelmina was producing his 11 children....


Can certainly see the claims William made regarding his parentage, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/denovan-william-dixon-campbell-3396

In 1841, he shows as a male servant in the Greig household:

James Greig 70, A G (freecen show it as agricultural)
James Greig 30
Isabella Greig 40
William Duniven 11 male servant b. Scotland
Catherine Stuart 20, female servant b. Scotland
Address: Mains, Dunnichen, Angus

1851, he is lodging in Crossgate, Cupar Fifeshire. He shows as a 21 yr old schoolmaster born in Edinburgh. Further details here http://bendigoheritagecemeteries.wordpress.com/2009/02/10/wdc-denovan-bendigo-pioneer/
Monica
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Offline MonicaL

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Re: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund
« Reply #5 on: Saturday 29 September 12 11:13 BST (UK) »
In Forres Cluny Cemetery, Moray-shire I came across the following stone

Died at Forres on 23rd Feb 1918 J Platen-Denovan formerly of Edinburgh youngest and 14th child of Francis Garden Denovan, British Consul at Copenhagen and Christiania respectively. And Wilhelmine Countess Platen Hallernunde his wife. (Both now deceased).

Dont know if it helps. I have a picture of you would like a copy.

http://boards.ancestry.co.uk/surnames.denovan/1.2.35.2.1.2/mb.ashx

Unė kthimi i papenduar, I am wondering if the stone you mentioned earlier and as above may perhaps just be a memorial to J Platen Denovan's parents, when he was buried there, not necessarily where his parents were buried?

Regarding the mention of Greyfriars and possibly where some Denovan family may be buried, I checked here to see if anything showed but couldn't see a mention of the name www.gravestonephotos.com/public/cemetery.php?cemetery=1044

There is also this that you could check through 'The epitaths and monumental inscriptions in Greyfriars' www.rootschat.com/links/0rew/

Monica
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Offline Unė kthimi i papenduar

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Re: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund
« Reply #6 on: Saturday 29 September 12 14:46 BST (UK) »
no doubt = possible.   Francis according to the death registration is in Greyfriars.

Offline tina morana

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Re: Any Info on: Francis Garden Denovan & wife Countess Wilhelmina Platen Hallermund
« Reply #7 on: Sunday 30 September 12 11:00 BST (UK) »
Thanks again Aunty Gene for more fantastic info about Wilhelmina and family.
You've done well so far!
Interested very much about the other son, who came to Oz during the gold rush.
Do you know his first name at all?
Thank you
Tina m
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Offline AuntyGene

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Hi Tina
Sorry for the delay in replying, have only just seen your reply.  The 'son' of Francis Garden Denovan was William Dixon Campbell Denovan. Not sure where William was born, possibly it was Edinburgh, where his 'father' Francis was living.  Originally I thought that maybe Francis had been married before he married Wilhelmina, the Countess but I don't think so.  William was born in 1829 and Francis and his wife, Wilhemina where having children between the years of 1815 and 1842, so William falls within that period. William refers to his mother as being Margaret Campbell. They must have been very close as she followed him out to Australia after he established himself there.
Also, William can be found on the 1841 Scottish Census as living with a family called Greig. He is described as a 'servant'. Francis Garden Denovan, his father may have sent him away from Edinburgh, his little secret.  By 1851, William was lodging in Crossgate, Cupar, Fifeshire aged 21 and he was described as a schoolmaster born Edinburgh. He set up his own Adventure School there, no doubt funded by his father. I suppose it may have been with some relief that William decided to emigrate to Australia. Once there, William made no secret of who is father was - I wonder what Wilhelmina would have to say about that?