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Messages - hawk64

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London and Middlesex / Re: Meredith: Samuel Driver and Mary Ann m. 1852
« on: Tuesday 25 July 17 14:24 BST (UK)  »
Hi all,

Yes, luckily Rootschat did inform me of the message and I am back.

KiwiCockney, thanks for writing. I have done quite a bit of research since my last message and while I can't categorically prove it, there is little doubt in my mind that William Cole and Henry Thomas Cole are the same man.

I composed a timeline of events for the Henry Thomas and Elizabeth Cole family and found that when there were gaps between children's births, William Cole was active in Australia. William disappears from the records for a year in Australia - not long after, Henry Thomas and Elizabeth have another child - coincidentally named William.

I have yet been unable to find any record of Henry Thomas being born or dying.

Elizabeth's death registration had her husband recorded as William.

In the letter I have a copy of which is written by John Silas Cole (who your ancestor must have named her son after) he gives a date when his father - who he names as William Henry Thomas Cole - abandoned the family in England. This corresponds with the time that William set up business in Sydney, Australia.

In another coincidence, John Silas Cole did marry a Harriet Hartshorne in England. Less, than a year  later he married an Irish woman named in Mary in San Francisco. He appears to have lived out his life in California, dying in the early 1900s. I did find a later reference to a Harriet Cole, working as a servant. It appears that John Silas Cole did the same thing as his father - abandoned his wife and moved to another country.

I guess it doesn't help your research much but it is a fascinating story. It is one that I am looking at writing a book on. Where do I fit in? After William Cole's Australian wife died, he entered a de facto relationship with one of my ancestors and had several children. And I guess that means that if my Cole theory is right, you have a lot of half-relations in Australia.

All the best and thanks for writing.

United States of America / Re: John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Friday 06 November 15 12:56 GMT (UK)  »
Hi Lisa

Yes, it seems he and Mary headed north when the earthquake struck. I wonder if he ever got a reply to his letter of 1867. He was searching for a copy of his father's will - when he visited him in Australia during the 1850s, he would probably have realised that Dad was doing well financially but maybe not health-wise. His letter indicates that Dad said he would tend to his affairs - well, he did, but the members of his English family didn't receive a cracker. In fact, his English wife ended up dying in a poorhouse.

I'm also tracing the recipients of the father's will. He gave some real estate to a couple in Sydney and I can't find anything on them. It's just another twist in the mystery. Don't me get started on the convict wife's Australian husband who was allegedly murdered.

 I have found John's (and his brother's) merchant navy registration. Believe it or not, he was even John Silas on that form. Anyway, he first went to sea at the age of 14 and served as a cuddy (which is a waiter/kitchen-hand). He was in Calcutta in 1846 and in Australia in the 1850s. He got around.

I might write a book on this.

United States of America / Re: John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Wednesday 04 November 15 01:48 GMT (UK)  »
Excellent work from you both and I will explore those avenues.

John's letter to the Sydney City Corporation is dated Oct 9 1867 and asks for all correspondence to be forwarded to the Wells Fargo office in San Francisco. The letter date ties up with the directory reference of 1867 and 1868.

As for the earlier dates, they are also very possible. Even though he married in England in 1862, he could have been in the US in 1861. As he followed in his father's footsteps as a mariner, let me briefly tell you what I have discovered about the father. He married in England in 1819, fathered six children, sailed to Australia, married a convict widow in 1834, disappeared from Australia for a year (as he was back in England fathering another son with his English wife) then reappeared back in Australia where he remained. So as to what John got up to, I am not surprised of anything.

Having a copy of John's letter is wonderful. I only discovered it by accident when I was researching his father (who is connected to my family). John's letter brought up some anomalies which has led on this investigation. It's all very fascinating as John's father died a millionaire (in our money) and several of his houses still stand today in Sydney. They have a slight harbour view so they have million dollar price tags.

Now on to something exciting - I think I have found Harriet. There is a Harriet Cole appearing in the 1871 UK census. She is a lodger with some other people. The age recorded is close, the area she is living in is close to where the families were - and the place of birth is exactly correct (and it's not Ireland). If this is her, and I think it is, John has done a runner (as we say here). He may have already met Mary in his travels and may have already married her in the USA. Like father, like son.

All very interesting and once again thanks for the help   

United States of America / Re: John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Tuesday 03 November 15 01:45 GMT (UK)  »
Thanks for that. Unfortunately I seem to have a lot of trouble with viewing documents at FamilySearch and this one is no exception. I can't view the original but thanks for your input.

United States of America / Re: John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Monday 02 November 15 11:30 GMT (UK)  »
Hi Lisa

You have been more than just help - you've been terrific! That last message organises the information really well.

For starters, I have never had a description of him before. Funnily enough though, I have his handwriting when he wrote the letter back in the 1860s.

You make an interesting comment about him always using John Silas or John S. His brother did the same thing - he was Charles Colet Cole or Charles C. Cole on everything.

I think I am fairly convinced that Harriet and Mary are two different people. What happened to Harriet - well, I don't know. John's father had a wife in England and one in Australia so maybe that ran in the family, too.

We will probably never know who Mary was. The 1900 census says they were married for forty years, which would be 1860. He married Harriet in 1862 in England. Was he actually married to Mary? Did he marry her before Harriet? In those days, he was a mariner so he could have been anywhere. I know he sailed to Australia in the 1850s to find his father.

It's an interesting story and becomes more interesting with his father's activities.

Is there any point accessing the death record and if so, how do I go about it?

Once again Lisa, thanks for everything.

United States of America / Re: John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Monday 02 November 15 01:42 GMT (UK)  »
I am fairly sure it's him. There is a letter from the 1860s in the Sydney City Archives that he wrote regarding his father's will. He stated that any correspondence could be forwarded to him in San Francisco.

Also I think I have just found Harriet's birth (surname was spelled incorrectly). She was born in London in 1830. So she isn't Irish and nor were the parents. Harriet's mother's name was Mary Ann.

Very interesting. Talk to you soon and once again, many thanks

United States of America / Re: John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Monday 02 November 15 00:54 GMT (UK)  »
It's actually my belief that Harriet and Mary are not the same person. I cannot find any birth for Harriet or any other records apart from that marriage. Her father was English. In the 1900 census, Mary is down as Irish and so are her parents.
So the possibilities are that Harriet died early and John went off to America where he met Mary, who seems to have been there before him. Or John abandoned Harriet and ran off with Mary - this is something his father did with his mother. Long story, that one.
I might have to try and access that death record in 1907 somehow.

United States of America / Re: John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Sunday 01 November 15 23:28 GMT (UK)  »
Hi Lisa,

Yes, on all records I have seen, John's age and DOB fluctuated so that death could very well be him.

As far as Mary is concerned, there's a little mystery there. He married in England in 1862 but her name was Harriet Hartshorne. I haven't found much on her but I did notice that her mother's name (if I have the correct family) was Mary. Maybe she dropped the name Harriet. However, the 1900 census seemed to indicate that Mary Cole had been in the USA slightly longer than John. Having said that, John was a mariner so he could have been at sea.

Thanks for your help so far.

United States of America / John Silas Cole - Humboldt County, California - 1900
« on: Sunday 01 November 15 12:17 GMT (UK)  »
I am trying to find out what happened to John Silas Cole and his wife Mary.

According to the 1900 Census, they were living in Eureka Township, Humboldt County, California.
John was around 70 years old, his wife Mary around 63.
John was born in Middlesex, England - Mary apparently born in Ireland.

They had been living in California since the early 1860s, regularly appearing in the California Great Registers - living in Arcata, Ryans Slough and Eureka Nob. (Apologies for any incorrect spelling).

The trail goes cold after 1900 and if anyone can help, it would be much appreciated.

Regards, Michael, Australia

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