Author Topic: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry  (Read 558 times)

Offline kdsoph

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John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« on: Wednesday 11 August 21 03:55 BST (UK) »
Hi There,

I have a mystery I need your expertise and guidance to help solve. It's a bit of a twisty tale but I will outline the conundrum as simply as possible.

We have 2 men; James Francis Wall and Rupert Henry who are not related in any way.
One changed his name to John Francis Lassiter and the other went missing.

The conundrum is which did what?

The name was changed upon a marriage [see attached] when James Lassiter married Gladys Dillon on 23rd June 1933.

I can find no evidence of this man's birth to these parents in Hobart Australia, so it is presumed that his identity is falsified.

The original marriage certificate is no help because it is handwritten in full by only one person including the signatures. [see attached]

I have a long, detailed and as clear as I can be tale describing the issue, but I thought it best to ask if anyone is willing to take the challenge on with me and what you will need.
 

Thank you
Kim







Fordham, Armstrong, Blanch, Baker, Jackson, Clarke, Moffat, Wall, Heaney, Caples, Callinan, Hennessy

Medieval: Browne, Cooke, Scot, Bridgwood, Mee

Offline majm

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 05:56 BST (UK) »
May I ask if you have sought out the actual image of the church register?  It should have the signatures of the bride and the groom.   You have uploaded the Official Transcription and the Official copy of the Civil Certificate of registration of the marriage,  but not an image of the actual Church Record.   

Fingers crossed that will help you a tad further.

JM
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Offline kdsoph

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 06:17 BST (UK) »
Great thought. Will do. Watch this space

Thank you
Fordham, Armstrong, Blanch, Baker, Jackson, Clarke, Moffat, Wall, Heaney, Caples, Callinan, Hennessy

Medieval: Browne, Cooke, Scot, Bridgwood, Mee


Offline mckha489

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 06:28 BST (UK) »
I presume the Rupert Henry in your sights is the one who left his wife and family in 1929?

Which is the James Francis Wall?
Side tracked to a friendís very interesting Norfolk families. MORGAN, PRATT, HORNOR, SUCKLING, GLEANE etc. And in London DOWNES, du CROZ, MORGAN (same MORGANs as the Norwich lot)

Offline kdsoph

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 09:31 BST (UK) »
You presume correctly!
Is the mystery that famous :o?
Fordham, Armstrong, Blanch, Baker, Jackson, Clarke, Moffat, Wall, Heaney, Caples, Callinan, Hennessy

Medieval: Browne, Cooke, Scot, Bridgwood, Mee

Offline mckha489

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #5 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 09:34 BST (UK) »
You presume correctly!
Is the mystery that famous :o?

No, I just looked in Trove.
I think it would put us (me) out of our misery if you just posted your full story  :)
Side tracked to a friendís very interesting Norfolk families. MORGAN, PRATT, HORNOR, SUCKLING, GLEANE etc. And in London DOWNES, du CROZ, MORGAN (same MORGANs as the Norwich lot)

Offline kdsoph

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #6 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 09:45 BST (UK) »
Hee hee!
Thank you for the offer. I hope I dont add to your misery  ;D

We have 2 men; James Francis Wall and Rupert Henry who are not related in any way.
One changed his name to John Francis Lassiter and the other went missing.
 
1. James Francis Wall


Up until last week, I believed my grand-uncle James Francis Wall changed his name to John Francis Lassiter up until his marriage to Gladys Evelyn Dillon in 1933.
 
The reason I thought I knew that these 2 men were one and the same is that;
1. my family always knew that an uncle "Jack" changed his name from Wall to Lassiter
2. the Lassiters were at my parents' wedding and James' son was a groomsman for my father as his cousin
3. My grandmother's cousin who is still alive, John Wall, sent me photos of James Francis with all four Wall brothers together that he had from his father and confirmed James changed his name to John Lassiter but no one knew why.
4. John sent me photos of the now James Lassiter with his wife and with his 2 adopted children.

Cousin John also filled me in on James' life story;

  • James was his parents' (Garret Wall and Catherine Francis Moffat) 7th illegitimate child and 3rd son.
    He had 2 younger brothers and a little sister. There were a total of 9 Moffat siblings who survived to adulthood and adopted their father's name Wall when their parents finally married in 1919.
  • His parents split up in 1920 splitting the childrens' care between them. James and 2 of his brothers went to Toowoomba, QLD with their father and the rest with their mother to Newcastle, then Sydney NSW.
  • In 1922 his brother George was hospitalised after being seriously injured in a shooting accident, so his father, (presumably unable to cope) put his 2 youngest sons James and Sidney in the notorious St Vincents orphanage in Nudgee. They never saw their parents again.
  • The boys suffered a lot, and James was even hospitalised for months (no one knows why) so just 2 months before his 18th birthday when he would have been released for State Care anyway he ran away 4th Feb 1928.

All of this information has been verified one way or another with orphanage records etc.
From this point on nothing can really be substantiated with evidence of any kind, except for what James told his brothers years later when they reunited in the 1940s, who passed the story down.

James Life 1928 to 1930
From age about 20, he went to sea, travelled the East Coast of Australia and named his favourite Bay in Cairns. He then went to America and worked in a Suger Beet Factory in San Francisco. Tired of that he left and went gold prospecting in New Guinea. He then sought to reconnect with his NSW siblings in the 1930s, where he married.

The last Electoral Roll I have for James Francis Wall was in 1932 showing he is living in Thorn St Newcastle aged 22 and working as a labourer.

1933 Marriage and Change of Name
The next thing we know is that John Francis Lassiter married Gladys Dillon on 24th June 1933.
James not only changed his name when he married, but he also changed his place of birth, his parents and his age. [see birth Registration Attached and Marriage Certificate attached.]

No one in the Wall family knows why, just that he did.

The brothers reunited with their lost Qld brother Sidney who had been abandoned back in the orphanage in 1940 when he had enlisted in the army and was stationed at a camp in Great near Newcastle. [see photo attached]

Up until now, the only thing I have a tiny query about is his death record. [see attached] but that is only with regard to the dodgy entries.


To me, the only lingering question was "why?" but as he was not my direct ancestor I had "parked"
 this question and left his story at that.

The Twist
Recently I was contacted by a woman "Eddy" who is convinced that James Lassiter is her long lost grandfather? named Rupert Henry!  :o
Eddy has been researching the disappearance of Rupert for years and she has accumulated mounds of information on him which lead her to believe that he didn't go missing, he just changed his name and began a new life as the same James Lassiter.


Rupert Henry

Rupert Henry was born on 26 January 1900 in Cowra, New South Wales To Colin and Frances Henry.
He married Myrene Vesta Miriam on 2 October 1926 in Sydney, New South Wales. They had one child during their marriage, Vivienne born 6 Nov 1927.
In Feb 1929 he was reported missing
Then a warrant was issued for his desertion 6 Mar
Then the warrant was cancelled 20th Mar
Then 27th Nov 2 Warrants were issued for his arrest for not paying support to his wife and child.

He was never seen again.

Eddy is a descendant of Rupert's siblings. They have matched his life story to James Wall's after he left the orphanage. The going to sea, Cairns, America and gold panning in New Guinea.

I believe they were sailors together and perhaps Rupert started a new life in the States and gave James enough information for him to create a new persona back in Australia. But Eddy is insistent that Rupert went to Tasmania changed his name and came back to marry an old sweetheart Gladys Dillon as John Francis Lassiter.

So How do I go about proving Eddy either mistaken or correct?
Fordham, Armstrong, Blanch, Baker, Jackson, Clarke, Moffat, Wall, Heaney, Caples, Callinan, Hennessy

Medieval: Browne, Cooke, Scot, Bridgwood, Mee

Offline mckha489

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #7 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 09:56 BST (UK) »
Well!

I have only read through that once so far, but will do so again.

But the thing that occurred to me from your first post was to wonder how likely it would be for Rupert Henry (a Clerk normally dressed in a navy suit) to become a seaman and then a steel worker. (as per Lassiter) And I see nothing at first read to make me un-wonder that.

The weight of evidence as you have outlined it does seem to be on your side rather than Eddy's. BUT, the other thing about your story is that - wasn't James Francis WALL born about 1910? To leave an orphanage just before he turned 18, then turn up to marry in 1933 only leaves a 5 year gap. and he would only be 23.  That seems rather unlikely too!

I might have mis-understood - will post this anyway and consider.
Side tracked to a friendís very interesting Norfolk families. MORGAN, PRATT, HORNOR, SUCKLING, GLEANE etc. And in London DOWNES, du CROZ, MORGAN (same MORGANs as the Norwich lot)

Offline mckha489

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Re: John Francis Lassiter AKA James Francis Wall or Rupert Henry
« Reply #8 on: Wednesday 11 August 21 09:59 BST (UK) »
The wedding of Robert Henry sounds very grand. Does Eddy have photographs? How does he compare in those to the photo you have?


added - oh, is that the other photograph that has just shown up on reply #6?
Side tracked to a friendís very interesting Norfolk families. MORGAN, PRATT, HORNOR, SUCKLING, GLEANE etc. And in London DOWNES, du CROZ, MORGAN (same MORGANs as the Norwich lot)