James Alfred Jones (b 1871, Surrey, England) and Emily Amelia Hayes (b 1873, Cressy, Tasmania) were my great grandparents. They married in Longford, Tasmania in 1895 and are buried at the Holy Trinity Church, Cressy, Tasmania.
James arrived in Tasmania in 1872 as an infant with his mother Mary Ann (nee Davis) and father Alfred. Alfred migrated to work on the railway and was among many others who came to make a new life. According to his obituary, James spent his early life at Oatlands. Emily, the daughter of James and Mary Ann (Freeman) was born near Cressy on a farm called Parknook.
They had seven children: Owen James (b 1895), Rebecca (b 1898) who died an infant, Edith Evelyn (b 1898), William Leonard (b 1900), Ella Grace (b 1903), Leslie Arthur (b 1905) and my grandfather Cyril George (b 1910). I can remember Auntie Ella and Uncle Les. Auntie Ella and her husband Jack Ambrose ran one of the pubs at Deloraine for a time. Uncle Les and his wife Anne lived in Cressy and I would visit them as a child – their house was lovely, cool and dark.
In 1914, James Alfred and Emily Amelia were living at Connorville, a large farming property near Cressy, she undertaking domestic duties and he a labourer. My grandfather would have been 4 at this time. For anyone with an interest in history written about the haves rather than the have-nots, there is a section on the O’Connors and Connoville in this document on page 19 – beware it is contemporary to the time it was written and by no means politically correct by today’s standards. Still, it gives an understanding to the general feel about who was important in the early days of the colony, and specifically the Cressy and Bishopsbourne area, and who was not. My family is only notable in our absence. Interestingly Arthur O’Connor married Miss Parker, of Parknook. Parallels for James and Emily.
Australia, Electoral Rolls, 1903-1980
James and Emily were also publicans at one point, running the Ringwood Hotel in Cressy, from 1921 until James died. Cyril and his wife Kath also ran the pub later in the 1950s when my mother was a child. Some interesting facts appear in his obituary, including that there were floral tributes from the ‘Lodge’ – my grandfather was involved with the Masonic Lodge and it appears perhaps so was his father. It also tell me that my grandfather Cyril was living in Natone – he was a teacher at this time and this was his first school.
MR. J. A. JONES, CRESSY (1945, March 10). Advocate (Burnie, Tas. : 1890 – 1954), p. 2. Retrieved February 4, 2018, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article68916752
James’ ancestry is a bit of a mystery to me, and has been a genealogical brick wall for some time. It’s easy with convict arrivals, their every detail is recorded. Free settlers, on the other hand take some detective work.