Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Isaac CASTLE and Harriet LEWIS

This entry relates to the CASTLE brothers Isaac and James, sons of William CASTLE (b. 11 Dec 1798) and Amy ROBERTS from West Hendred, Berkshire, England. They married on 27 Jun 1828 in East Hendred, Berkshire. In the 1841 and 1851 censuses William, gave his occupation as Agricultural Laborer. James was born in 1826, and his brother Isaac in 1831, two of five children. William CASTLE had died by December 1856 as James and Isaac state in their immigration records that their father is deceased, and their mother Amy ROBERTS had married for a second time in 1853 to James RIVERS.

Note: a number of on-line GED’s I’ve found indicate that their father William CASTLE also died in Australia in the same year as James LEWIS. I can find no record of William CASTLE in Australia thus far, and the evidence above suggests that this is erroneous.

I have a few certificates scanned by others that are poor quality, and I’ve pieced a lot together from what others have and I’ve cobbled it all into my GED file.

James married Leah LEWIS on 5 August 1848 in West Hendred Berkshire, and in the 1851 census they lived in East Hendred with their 2-year old son William in the home village of the Lewis girls. In 1855 Isaac marred Leah’s younger sister Harriet LEWIS at St Giles Church in nearby Reading prior to both couples departing for Australia in Dec 1856 on the Beejapore from Southampton. They landed in Sydney in March 1857, their arrival entries stating that the CASTLE boys were from West Hendred, their wives the Lewis girls from East Hendred, and none of them could read or write. Both couples lost a child on the voyage; Isaac and Harriet lost 1-year-old Mary Ann, and James and Leah lost an infant also named Mary Ann.

James and Leah had two children born in England, another born at sea and dying, and the remaining children born from 1858-1870, in and around the Sydney, Parramatta and the St George area where James and Leah seem to have lived. Some are transcribed in the NSW BDM as CASSELL rather than CASTLE, and CASTLES is also present (given the English pronunciation of Castle this makes sense).

Concurrently, Isaac and Harriet seem to have made their way to Bathurst, NSW relatively quickly, as they have a child in Enmore NSW on 25 May 1857 two months after arriving (a second Alice Ann 1857-1920, namesake of the first lost on the voyage), thence all others from 1859-1872 were born/registered in Bathurst, Black Rock, or Cowra, though these are only transcript entries at the BDM site, not copies of the certificates themselves, which will ultimately yield much more information.

Summary of known children born to Isaac CASTLE and Harriet Lewis, though much information is based on NSW BDM transcripts and needs to be confirmed.

1. Alice Ann, christened 24 Feb 1856, East Hendred, Berkshire, England. Died in 1857 on voyage to Australia.

2. Alice Ann, born 25th May 1857, Enmore, NSW. Probably married John Inglis (recorded as Alice CASSELLS), Coonamble, 1885 and died 1920, Carcoar, NSW.

3. Charles William, farmer. Born 1859, Bathurst NSW. Married Emily Ann Potter at Binnie Creek, NSW on 07 Dec 1887, and died while living in Paddington NSW in 1927.

4. Leah Ann, born 1860 in Bathurst NSW, and married James ARMSTRONG, 1883, in West Macquarie NSW. Died in Murrumburrah, NSW in 1911 (the same year as her father).

5. Jacob, born in 1862 and died in 1862 at Dennis Island NSW, registered in the Bathurst Lonely Graves Register. Dennis Island was apparently an enclave of Methodist families.

6. Amy CASTLE (my great great grandmother). Born 1 Jul 1864 at Black Rock, Bathurst, NSW. Married Samuel Litson Border on 1 Jan 1884 at Wallaroo, Cowra, NSW and had 13 children, at least eight of whom survived adolescence, as they were alive when she passed away on 11 Mar 1940 at Sydney Hospital, late of 17 Oatley Rd, Paddington.

7. Jacob CASTLE (transcribed as Male CASTLE), born 1866 in Bathurst NSW. Married Flora MCKENZIE 1891, Cowra NSW. Died, Cowra NSW in 1940.

8. Abraham CASTLE, born 1872 and died Apsley, NSW in the same year.

and twin:

9. Isaac CASTLE, born 1872 and died Apsley, NSW in the same year.

It is not clear where the error lies at this early stage, however Isaac CASTLE’s death certificate in 1911 correctly gave four living family members (Alice A, Charles, Amy and Isaac) but only 1 female deceased.

Harriet Lewis’ death is thus far a mystery. A perennial error reported is that Harriet died in 1882. This is probably based on the following BDM entry:

But this is not Harriet, whose parents were John and Dinah – that her husband, sister and brother-in-law were all alive, and that her sisters death in 1908 correctly lists her parents names further discounts this. Searches of the NSW BDM with all possible spellings of Harriett, and CASTLE (CASSELL, CASSELLS, CASTLES, etc. and LEWIS) or her parents names has yielded nothing. Harriett’s brother Stephen LEWIS (whose mysterious story is for another entry) spent approximately 20 years in NSW prior to arriving in Queensland about 1877, but no death records exist for a Harriett CASTLE/LEWIS and permutations in Queensland.

The search continues. Isaac appears not to have re-married at any point.

Isaac CASTLE died on 9 Aug 1911 in Cowra NSW aged 87, his son stating he lived in Wallaroo, ‘near Cowra’. The headstone transcript from Bathurst FHG states that he married Harriet Lewis. The name Wallaroo comes up in a number of certificates, and Cowra FHG informed me it was approximately 5 miles out along the Canowindra Road on the left, once a tiny village, a church and a school. The school was removed about 50 years ago to Wiltendale Road, further off Canowindra Road to the right, well back off the road.

Isaac’s brother James CASTLE is listed in the 1872 Greville directory in Blacktown (west of Sydney) as a laborer. At some point after having their children (their last child John was born in 1870), James and Leah appear to have moved to Bathurst, perhaps to be with Isaac and Hrriet? James died in 1896 and Leah in 1908, both in Bathurst NSW.

Harriet and Leah LEWIS had other members of their family move to Australia following their departure, though those details, and whether they even knew this, will be the subject of a subsequent entry. There’s much more to discover about the CASTLE’s. Once completed I’ll post their time-line.


i love u said...

hey wuts ur dads name?

Anonymous said...

Jacob Castle was my great grandfather :-) His son was one of the greatest men I've ever known!

Matt Hall said...

I'd like to hear more about Jacob and his children. Some people have written biographies on their ancestors to put up on the blog - let me know if you'd like to post a biography on your grandfather and his family. Always looking for more info on the extended tree.

Anonymous said...

Inputing war record then will get back to you. Have record from Aust War Mem. Plus family photos.Your tree is not on research website ??? Not comfortable with Blog.

Matt Hall said...

Hi there,
My tree is at ancestry:


Let me know if that doesn't work. Also you can email me at cispt2 at gmail dot com.


Anonymous said...

Matt. Sent you an email. Good luck !