Southerly by David Haywood

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Southerly: Who was George Hildebrand Alington—and why did he give away his “Girl child 23 months old”?

272 Responses

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  • Dianne Mitchell, in reply to Ross Mason,

    more likely to be Wick(low) in Ireland, not USA LOL.

    Tauranga • Since May 2014 • 21 posts Report Reply

  • Dianne Mitchell, in reply to Lynley Chapman,

    Well...Eliza's maiden name was Webb...so could be a connection;-))!! And Eliza's mother Susan WEbb died in CHCH, so her family were there. I don't ChCH either...but I would hazard a guess to say that Caledonian and Webb Streets in St Albans weren't too far away.

    Tauranga • Since May 2014 • 21 posts Report Reply

  • Dianne Mitchell, in reply to Lynley Chapman,

    I have your letter...now digesting it. Hubby has been assigned to kitchen duties...I can't do all this sleuthing and cook at the same time;-))

    Tauranga • Since May 2014 • 21 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Dianne Mitchell,

    but I would hazard a guess to say that Caledonian and Webb Streets in St Albans weren’t too far away.

    They're about three blocks apart.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Dianne Mitchell,

    Eliza Ann's death details
    Died at 583 Madras Street ( her son James' house) on 14 Oct 1942 aged 77 and cremated at Bromley Crematorium,ashes scattered in the rose gardens according to their card index. Death registered as 'Eliza Ann Kennard commonly known as Eliza Ann Winter '.

    Tauranga • Since May 2014 • 21 posts Report Reply

  • Lynley Chapman, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Not quite next door to each other but close enough for Eliza Ann Winter to see Eileen Winter Coleman IF she knew where her child went to be raised. Alington did not want Eliza to know but at 23 months of age I would think a mother would recognise her child out playing or walking along St Albans’ streets.

    Porirua • Since Aug 2011 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Lynley Chapman, in reply to Dianne Mitchell,

    Thank you:-) and thanks to the chief cook!

    Porirua • Since Aug 2011 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Bevan Shortridge,

    Turnbull holds Alington family papers and part of the archive is a listing for:

    Papers relating to Eileen Winter Coleman
    Date: 2010-2011
    Ref: MS-Papers-11146-19
    Quantity: 1 folder(s).
    Physical Description: Mss (photocopies), typescripts
    Use/Reproduction: RESTRICTED
    Part of: Alington family : Papers of Alington and Broadhead families
    Format: 1 folder(s), Manuscript


    Perhaps the find could go there?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 122 posts Report Reply

  • Aidan, in reply to Annie Magee,

    1898/3379 Eliza Ann Winter Frederick Kennard

    Sorry to be a pain, but another weird coincidence, I married a Kennard (not in NZ), Names eh? Maybe not as rare as I'd imagined ...

    Canberra, Australia • Since Feb 2007 • 154 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Dianne Mitchell,

    cremated at Bromley Crematorium,ashes scattered in the rose gardens according to their card index

    Did the index give a location for her plaque? Those rose gardens are just around the corner from me...

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Marg Couch, in reply to SteveH,

    The chase of genealogy is such a buzz! Do you think there'd be much appetite for a NZ version of the WDYTYA franchise?

    Hamilton • Since May 2014 • 1 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood, in reply to Bevan Shortridge,

    Turnbull holds Alington family papers and part of the archive is a listing for:

    Papers relating to Eileen Winter Coleman

    Now how the hell did I miss that? Well done, sir! That's the absolute final nail in the coffin. Case closed! (Though I'd still be extremely interested in any further information or confirmation.)

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • Dinah Dunavan,

    If only someone would discover my great grandmother's papers while renovating their Christchurch house and blog about it.

    Great gran was an unofficial adoption, probably in Dunedin, sometime about 1883. I have found some evidence that her adoptive parents had a bit more money than you'd expect a labourer to have at that time (a fancy cart) so I've often wondered if they were paid to take the child.

    Great gran, in her memoirs, said that all the family papers went missing when her husband sold all their possessions while she was visiting her parents. He did send her 50 pounds so that she could follow him to Australia! I suspect she disappeared the papers so that no one would ever find out about her birth, clearly she was illegitimate. But if she was telling the truth, someone bought a sideboard full of my family papers!

    My research leads me to suspect that the Methodist church her parents belonged to, in South Dunedin, arranged the adoption. Churches were arranging private adoptions until quite recently (ie. 1950s at least).

    Dunedin • Since Jun 2008 • 186 posts Report Reply

  • Lynley Chapman, in reply to David Haywood,

    Interesting that Alex Turnbull Library has a "Restricted" note against Use/Reproduction on Eileen Winter Coleman's file.

    Porirua • Since Aug 2011 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Dianne Mitchell, in reply to Marg Couch,

    I'm sure the producers could find enough NZ celebrities to make a series. Mind you...there is a bit of an attrition rate...they search a huge number of celebs, but only continue the research if there is something to make a story out of. Most of we "kiwi's" of European/ UK origins have come from very humble working class stock....not that much interest in following a family down a coal mine for example. Most of my coal mining ancestors must be still down the mines cos I can't find lots of them...I guess one or 2 must have come up for air...otherwise I wouldn't
    be here. LOL

    Tauranga • Since May 2014 • 21 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH, in reply to Marg Couch,

    The chase of genealogy is such a buzz! Do you think there’d be much appetite for a NZ version of the WDYTYA franchise?

    I don’t know if we could manage a local version but I think genealogy's appeal is broadening because it’s much more immediate now with so much online.

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Old electoral rolls? They can be a can of worms. When I was last at the Turnbull Library, I flicked through rolls from the 1940s--to discover that my father appeared in two for the same year--one for a Christchurch electorate, where he appeared to be married, and one in Taranaki, where he was single. There has only ever been one Wilfred Ronald Lealand.
    Not just a cupboard but a truck-load of skeletons in my family!

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2560 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    A tantalizing email! I have set up an PA account on this person's behalf and hopefully she will be able to offer further enlightenment (funny how technology tends to fail at the most inopportune moments)...

    hello David,
    I have tried & tried to sign in to the blog page discussing George & his illegitimate child but it will not accept that my password is correct. Even changing it/reconfirming it a number of times

    I know who she was and was going to add this to the discussion

    regards
    ngaire

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • David Hood,

    Dinah, the Methodist archives were centralised in Christchurch, and had been closed since the earthquake (reopening last year). As one, if very time consuming, avenue, and were prepared to make the assumption that it was conducted through the church (and the additional assumption it is more likely to be all Methodists involved) you could look for evidence there. As a round about search for secretive ones (where there is much less likelihood of a paper trail being held at the church) you might find something looking at Methodist baptisms to children of unwed mothers in the period of your ancestors birth in the Dunedin area, and children who disappear would seem likely candidates for further investigation.
    But that approach would be time consuming, and may involve some expense (I don't know what the archives policies are).

    Geoff I was once contacted by someone who said "I've been looking through your electoral rolls and my great grandfather and my great grandmother seem to be living in different parts of town". All I could agree was yes, yes they were.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 1445 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    Margaret Alington nee Broadhead was a very well known historian and Turnbull Library regular in Wellington until her death in 2012. Even has a Wikipedia page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Alington There is an Alington Road in Karori by Karori West school. What a pity she is no longer with us as she probably knew all about this story.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3226 posts Report Reply

  • Dinah Dunavan, in reply to David Hood,

    Hi David. I had some correspondence over 10 years ago with the Methodist archivist in Christchurch. Sadly they didn’t turn up any new information. But a search of baptisms sounds like a worthwhile, albeit lengthy, endeavour. I’ll suggest it to a cousin with more time to spend poring over dusty ledgers.

    Dunedin • Since Jun 2008 • 186 posts Report Reply

  • SteveH,

    If George’s marriage took place after the adoption of his daughter on November 24th, 1893, then when exactly was his first ‘legitimate’ child born in 1894 (her birth certificate is held by the National Library but not available online)? Did this have a precipitory effect on the timing of the marriage and adoption?

    George Hildebrand Alington married Winifred Beatrice Dumergue 12 Apr 1893.
    The adoption letter is dated 24 Nov 1893.
    Winifred Louisa Alington was born 11 Feb 1894.
    Based on these dates I wonder if it was Winifred's impending birth that triggered the adoption.

    Since Sep 2009 • 444 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood, in reply to SteveH,

    Based on these dates I wonder if it was Winifred’s impending birth that triggered the adoption.

    Great sleuthing, SteveH!

    Actually, I wonder if Alington's marriage on 12 April 1893 might explain the payment he appears to have made to the child's mother on 21st December 1892. Probably the first rule in organizing a wedding is to prevent the mother of your illegitimate child making an appearance!

    But your dates of the wedding and Winifred's birth put paid to my admittedly unworthy hypothesis that Alington may have knocked up his soon-to-be-wife as well.

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • Dianne Mitchell, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    It's quite common to find people enrolled in 2 or more different electorates at the same time. Especially in the 'olden days" like 1940;-))The main reason being that they have moved from one address to another without advising the electoral office.

    I've found people in e.rolls who died years ago but haven't been removed.

    Then there are those wealthier people who own more than one residence who have enrolled in all the electorates that they own property in.

    And of course, there are always the scandalous ones...

    Tauranga • Since May 2014 • 21 posts Report Reply

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