Author Topic: HELP!! me find great-grandfather John Robert Davis-emigrated to Australia 1800s  (Read 3026 times)

Offline katorama

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I can see that you have a reliable source for Australia as birthplace for Ernest DAVIS.

Where do you see Victoria....... and Beechworth, Victoria, as his birthplace?

When Ernest came to America, he went through some immigration interviews, in which he states that he was born in Beechworth, Victoria.   

We think that he may have been born out of wedlock and raised either by someone else or in an orphanage.  We know absolutely nothing about his mother - no name or anything - there is a note on Ernest's marriage certificate that his mother is "Portuguese-Chinese" but that is it. 

Offline katorama

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I can’t see any birth in Victoria BMD that looks right

It may have been an unrecorded birth; it's possible that he was either an illegitimate birth or adopted by another family.


Offline katorama

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Thank you for the direction to the Beechworth reference.

If Ernest DAVIS is an interpreter he must have spent a good amount of time in....Hong Kong?...China?

He marries the day after arriving in Hawaii, (aged 38 years at 1912), similar arrival for wife, Mary T MAY (age 24 years at 1912).

There is quite an age difference between them. It might be worth considering that Ernest has taken a few years off his age, and is older that 38 years?

Where did they arrive from?

They have a family of sons, but name Ernest after father, is only used as second given name for two sons.  And John or Robert after paternal grandfather?.

I think it is likely that Ernest has an earlier marriage/family........somewhere?

Witnesses were sometimes strangers, available to suit the purpose eg. clerk at the Town Hall. I do not think this would be the case with witnesses Mrs Cornelia S PIERCE....Dr W F M McALLISTER, available at short notice to be at the wedding.

Who are they?. You might suspect that they are known to Ernest and May.

Census USA  Ancestry 1920
at 682 29th St Alameda Oakland California
DAVIS Ernest   male 47y widower arrived 1906  naturalised 1911
father born England   mother born Ireland  court interpreter   County

DAVIS Archie       6y     
DAVIS Bernie       5y
DAVIS Aaron       3y 11m   all born California, father born Australia, mother born China

BANKSON Carl F   69y  arr.  1866   nat. 1872  born Sweden, mother/father born Sweden
BANKSON Anna    37y  arr. 1903    nat. 1911  born Sweden, mother/father born Sweden
BANKSON Carl F     8y  son                            born California, mother/father born Sweden

Ernest would not be raising the boys by himself. Who are the BANKSONs?

From the US immigration interview, we learned that Ernest spoke Spanish, French, German, Chinese, Japanese fluently.  I don't know where he learned all of those languages but it indicates some sort of access to being able to speak them with others.

Ernest found his way up to Innisfail (then Geraldton) in Queensland.  He worked at a general store and lived there for several years, then went to Japan for some time, then ended up in Hong Kong, where he married his wife, May Tam in a Chinese ceremony.  He then went to America to establish himself in Oakland, California, then returned to Hong Kong to get his wife. 

They married in Hawaii, ostensibly because of anti-miscegenation laws and the Chinese Exclusion Act made it very difficult for Chinese people to emigrate.  Ernest was able to do so because he had come to America and worked for the phone company as an interpreter, as well as for the courts.  He had several glowing reference letters with his immigration paperwork, and was able to retain a lawyer in San Francisco who assisted him.

I read something about how a lot of immigrants got married in Hawaii and that they had little ceremonies down at the wharves (kind of like Las Vegas quickie weddings).

Archie was my father - he had no middle name

Ben was the middle child - I don't know if he had a middle name - he died in the 1940's

Aaron was the youngest - his middle name was Ernest

They lived in a two story two family house in Oakland - I believe the Banksons either owned the house or were renters.

Offline sparrett

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Thinking on the theory that Ernest was a child taken in by the DAVIS family and given their surname, and following on from Neale's findings, here is the death of Johannah (nee HOGAN), the widow of John who died at the asylum.

Johanna DAVIS
Aged   88
At Harrietville, Victoria
Father HOGAN Pat
Mother Madge OBRIEN
1719/1897

Here is an Obituary Notice-
She had a son named James, which may be of interest, but there is not mention of Ernest.
https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/200530007

Sue
Census information Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk


Offline katorama

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Thank you so much!  I feel like I'm getting warmer. 

Where else but Australia would you find a mine called "Tiddledee-Addledee"?


Offline sparrett

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As has been mentioned by Neale, you should purchase the death certificate of the John DAVIS who died in 1871.

I would think that as you are searching a direct blood line, it is necessary to make investments towards accuracy.

Scroll down here for how to buy and it will be immediately downloaded to you .
As it was an institutional death, it may or may not be a full , accurate and factual record!

https://www.bdm.vic.gov.au/research-and-family-history/search-your-family-history

Sue
Census information Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline wivenhoe

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Can you post here the documents relating to the naturalization application.

Offline Annbee

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I do think Neale1961 has the right idea for you to obtain the death certificate of the John Davis who died in 1871 in Beechworth. It really doesn't cost a lot and will - hopefully - confirm or negate.

But meanwhile just to confuse you more :) I have a few links and thoughts for you.

Following on from Neale1961's findagrave memorial link, the son of John Robert Davis who is buried with him, Denis, was born at 'CLAR' and this stands for any of the following according to Victorian BDM abbreviations list: Clarendon, Claretown, Clarinda and Clarkefield. See Vic BDM Reg No 5799/1876  These CLAR place names can be all found in Victoria, largely near Melbourne or North of Geelong. But of course it might also stand for County CLARE. (Not matching the county Down as you found on FamilySearch). It might stand for another O/S place, I haven't searched.
i.e. If Denis was 20 when he died in 1876, it likely means this John Robert Davis was in or around one of the CLAR places in 1856.

This is a Trove link regarding the Inquest of  John Robert Davis's death. The article says a John Davis had been admitted to the Lunatic Asylum (in Beechworth presumably) from the Ovens District Hospital. The Ovens district is virtually the same area as Beechworth/Tarrawingee/Bright/Harrietville - all the places so far linked to this particular John Robert Davis.

https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/196417574

Here is a link to a brief history and description of Beechworth. You will see that the Chinese immigrants figured greatly in its early history.

http://melbourneblogger.blogspot.com/2009/04/beechworths-victorian-architecture.html

Was it the same John Davies (John Davies in the passenger list) who arrived in Australia early 1869? Just to confuse things there is also mention of a John Davis from Tarrawingee in an 1868 Trove article, before the other Davis arrived in 1869, who had to forfeit his licence (it doesn't specify what type, might be mining): https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/197437081

And after John Robert Davis who died in February 1871, there is mention of another John Davis having an accident at Growler's Creek (in the same area) in April of 1871. So many John Davises - and in a small population! Of course, the second John here might be John Robert's son...

Following on from the mention of Tiddledee-Addeldee, here is a link to several Tiddledee-Addeldee mine articles, where a John Davis is the mine manager.

https://trove.nla.gov.au/search/category/newspapers?keyword=Davis%20%2B%22Tiddledee-Addledee%22&l-state=Victoria

If it is your John Robert Davis who died in 1871, there is information of sorts to be had - so again, I think it's best if you confirm yay or nay. Good luck :)




 
Warwickshire: BEACH/BACHE, COX Gloucestershire: HAIL, VOYCE, TURNER, WINCHCOMBE, PREEN, Worcestershire: WEBB, CHARE, TYLER, Fife: FOWLER, JOHNSTONE, MELVILLE, Lanarkshire/Dunbartonshire: GRAHAM, CHALMERS, LANG, BISHOP, Sweden/Hamburg/London/Birmingham: HOKANSON

Offline Neale1961

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Clarification from the above post.
The man who died in 1871 was John Davis - I have seen no mention of the middle name “Robert” in relation to this man.
His son Denis, and his other children were all born in Ireland, and immigrated to Australia.
It is quite possible that his oldest son John came to Australia before the parents and younger siblings, in 1869. As I posted, I did not look further for other shipping records related to this family.


Added - If there is a link between this family and Ernest, it might even be through the son John Davis. He was born about 1841, old enough to have an illegitimate son in 1870, who then was adopted, either by his own parents, or some other person.
John Davis, the son, died in 1909 in Carlton.
Milligan - Jardine – Glencross – Dinwoodie - Brown: (Dumfriesshire & Kirkcudbrightshire)
Clark – Faulds – Cuthbertson – Bryson – Wilson: (Ayrshire & Renfrewshire)
Neale – Cater – Kinder - Harrison: (Warwickshire & Queensland)
Roberts - Spry: (Cornwall, Middlesex & Queensland)
Munster: (Schleswig-Holstein & Queensland) and Plate: (Braunschweig, Neubruck & Queensland & New York)