Transcript of letter. Page 1:
56 Sutherland St
Villiage of Chadstone
March 6th, 1971
Dear Jack, Jean and Cherubs,
Many thanks for your excellent and most welcome epistle - glad to hear ye are all well and that you are off on a well earned holiday. As this may be a long letter, I will get on with what I want to say about the FAMILY HISTORY since I gather Elizabeth is keen on becoming the family historian.
I will start with GRANDFATHER MOLONEY - your great grandfather Jack. His name: JOHN MOLONEY, born (I believe) in County Limerick ERIN. However, Elizabeth can check this information by calling on Pat at 23 Sctt St - Pat may also be able to fill in gaps which Win would have discussed with her. JOHN MOLONEY was a fine figure of a man - I describe him as 'every inch an earl'. He was not, in fact, of the Peerage, but one of the family was the Earl of Emly - a now 'deceased' peerage. Copies of BURKE's or DEBRETT's Peerage (in any decent library) could clear that up. JOHN MOLONEY emigrated to Australia about the date shown in the rough family 'tree'. He stood about 6ft. 6in. in height, was built in proportion and was said to be the biggest man in Sydney (in his day). All his Australian life (except the last few weeks) was spent at his home in 110 Pitt St Redfern, where his family was born (see 'TREE'). He married Ellen somebody (the name eludes me at the moment) but she died somewhere around 1910. The old grandfather lingered on for some years. Pat has his death certificate. Win got a copy for me at the Registrar at Redfern when Frank was going to England, and when we finished with it we sent it back to Win. No dount Pat still has it and it contains quite a lot of data. I am sure she will be happy to talk family history with Pat. The old man was Head Master of Cleveland St (the Premier Public School in Australia) when it was a denominational school - before Sir Henry Parks introduced the 'Education, Free Compulsory & Secular'. When I knew him he had retired many years, but he still lived at 110 Pitt St. Redfern. He dressed in TOP HAT, long frock coat a heavy gold watch and chain, and in fact all the paraphenalia of the Gentlemen of the day. A most striking character indeed.
As you will see, his famil consisted of Mary (who married an Austrian named M. Petrich, fresh from the Alaskan Goldfields where he obtained a very modest fortune. I believe the marriage may be registered at Redfern, or the Redfern Parish of St. Vincent de Paul, the Parish Priest there being Rev. Fr. O'Regan - who was P.P. for more than a generation. Much of our family history on that side is recorded in Redfern. I believe the old home (which is part of a terrace) is still in existence in Redfern.Well, Mary had no children, her husband predeceased her by many years. The next was Joe, who was a photographer (I stayed or boarded with them as a yound lad when starting to work in Sydney). Joe married Veronica Kellet, who was a bit of a bitch, but had the voice of an angel. They had three kiddies, the eldest (NELLIE) was a reigning beauty - in later years she married a chap named Stewart and used to visit Win regularly. I believe Nellie had several kiddies. Win always called her GONNA'. Pat may remember, at this period Nellie was rather down and out. Next to Joe came Nell. Nell married the
Town Clerk of Waterloo - however, there was a shortage in the cash - his name was William Arthur Coleman - and he was suspected of having put his hand in the peter! Whether he did or not I cannot say of course, but he was suspected. Anyway, after this he decided to try his luck on the great Goldfields of Kalgoorlie, Coolgardie & Boulder in West Australia. They had a lean time there and returned, after some years in the direst need. Coleman was an excellent carpenter and went into that game, eventually doing well and building a home at Botany. He and Nell had two kiddies, George and Nell - what happened to them is lost in history.
Following Nell camm WILL, a dashing, devil-may care 'man about town, hard drinking-hard riding. Anyhow he catured the heart of one Kate Lafura. There was much opposition and, after the birth of two children JOHN Moloney and 'Willie' they separated, JOHN affectionately called 'Little Jack' staying with his grandfather and Kate taking the other lad with her. She completely disowned Jack, who was thus left to fend for himself largely. Later, Kate Lafura petitioned for divorce and she then 'married' a tailor named Randle in business somewhere near Maitland. There is a long aftermath of this - about which I will tell later.
WILL became a bit of a ne-er-do-well - finally working in Queensland & later dying of a heart attack. Little Jack, after the death of Grandfather Molony came to live with us at Junee. We got him a job as Clerk in the Railways - and he was in Railway employ for the rest of his life. He was a difficult, morose, know-all type and it gave us quite a shock when he turned up with a very young (16 year) old bride who looked as though she stepped straight from the silver screen. The details are worth recording a I will digress to give you them;
Jack was shifted to Sydney, he found board with a motherly soul Mrs. Cooper, who had the very young 16 year old Marjorie. Jack promptly fell hard for Marjorie and she for him (goodness knows why), the old man hearing of this, booted him out of the house. It was enclosed with a brick wall, but, nothing daunted, Jack borrowed a ladder and climbed over. The old chap decided that force was useless so he adopted strategy. That night he spirited Marjorie away to relative on the far North Coast (in case of her mother). Within 24 hours Jack (we always called him MOLO) appeared. It was too much for Mrs. Cooper - she gave her consent and they were married at once. It proved a happy union - especially as Jack was a difficult person - Marjorie bore him several children, but was always the same happy care-free youngster. Last we heard Jack was retired - I believe he is now dead, but have completely lost contact. However, we will get back to the main theme - Grandfather Moloney's Family.
After Will came my Mother, BRIDGE - at bout 17 she met and married Fa Fa (my own father) again the ceremony took place at St Vincen de Pauls. Fa Fa was, at this time appointed to Dubbo as a teacher. Here I was born on 23:11:1896, in the COLONY (note COLONY NOT STATE) of N.S.W. Joe has my birth certificate and it is worth looking at. From there we went to Braidwood, etc.
Nanna (My mother and your Grandmother on my side Jack) died in - am afraid I have forgotten the date - & is interred at Rookwood.
The next child born to Grandfather John Moloney was MARGARET - or as we knew her AUNTIE MAG. She was a kind heared, good looking lass - veevry kind in fact - especially to kiddies. However she was the greatest liar since Tom Pepper - not wicked lies, but lies about things that did not matter. Mag eventualy married OWEN McCARTHY an Agent (his name appears on Grandfather's death certificate as the 'informant'. They had at least two children. NELL and another girl. One of these kiddies grew up and married a chap named ELEMENT - they had a son who wrote to me some time ago for family history. Like you Elizabeth, he wanted all the information he could get. I gave it to him and I wil send his adress s you may find it worthwhile to contact him.
I am not sure whether the next mentioned was born before or after Aunti Mag. However, it was another JOHN MOLONEY - we used to call him 'Big Jack' to distinguish him from Molo (Will's son). He was also a dashing figure, became a telegraphist in the G.P.O., later postmaster at Brewarrina. He married and had several kiddies. The irony of it all was that one if his girls fell in love a son of the divored Kate Lafura (Will's wife previously mentioned) and there was talk of a marriage - whether if ever took place is not known to me - but it certainly raised a flutter in the family dovecote at the time!
There was one other child of Grandfather Moloney's marriage - a girl, ALICE, who died in infancy.
That is briefly the history of JOHN MOLONEY. If memory serves me correctly he was the son of William Roberth Moloney - the same name as the then Early of Emly.
Now for the immediate descendants of John Moloney's children.
BRIDGE, my mother, as I mentioned married my father Alfred Ernest HALL (date shown on 'tree'. Four children were born of the union - myself (23:11:1896), Claude, Kathleen May and Winifred - at about 2 years intervals. Strangely enough on the night of Kathleen's birth a seven tailed comet appeared in the sky. Kathleen contracted meningitis when we moved to Junee and died about 1911 or 1912 - and rests in the sleep of peace in the quiet little cemetery just outside Junee. May she rest in peace.
Claude (two years my junior) had eye trouble from the start - however - he managed well through life - joined the Justice Dept. and became Magistrate. He married Clarinda Sarah Nowland up near Casino or Tenterfield and they had one son BOB. As you know, Clarisse (as we called her) died recently. Bob, too, as you know, married Maisie Rees (of 'Lodge' fame) and, though they had several kiddies, the marriage went flop. Maisise of course is quite mad - like the rest of the Rees crowd.
Kathleen I have mentioned. Last of the family was Winifred. Win, as we called her. She married ARTHUR CAMPBELL NISSEN at Granville, they had 2 kiddies (PAT who still lives at 23 Scott St, round the corner from you) and Shirley (who died in infancy. Another child (it was never certain whether she as still born or lived a few hours was also born. I have not mentioned her on the family tree.
Of my immediate family I must make mention. Born as I said in 1896, I went to St. Joseph's Hunters Hill at about 12 years of age. From there I went to work and never returned home again except for short intervals. At about 20 I met your mother, nee Mary Ellen Banfield. She was a school teacher who had taught (strangely enough) under my dad Fa-Fa. We were boarding at the same place - and - anyway we married in January 1918, at St. Francis Paddington at Nuptial Mass. You know most of the rest of course.
Nellie (MOTHER) God rest her Soul was the greatest woman ever - going to her eternal reward on 17:9:1940. She lies in No.10 section, Rookwood Cemetery, with her infant daughter Joan. May Perpetual Light Shine Upon Them! (Joe has the grave number).
To complete my part of the family history, I remarried again, in 1955, marrying Averil Agnes Saxon-Jones, widow of William. We were married (again with Nuptial Mass) at St. Aloysius, Caulfield, on 14:5:55 and, as you know there is one daughter of the marriage, Yvonee Fabian, Born 8:8:1956.
On mothers side, I have but little information. Her father was Thomas Uriah Banfield (Fa-Fa Banfield) a sterling character and very much the countryman. He was born in Kent (Tonbridge Wells), date approx. on 'tree', his father being a bit of a drunk and his mother a hard working woman. They worked and lived on the estate of the local 'SQUIRE' (squires were fashionable in those days) - Squire DALLISON was his name. The family occupied a quaintly built house locally known as the 'COFFIN HOUSE' because of its resemblance to that gruesome article of death. The coffin house is still standing, though not now occupied by the Banfields. With his brother Jack, (though not at the same time) they 'emigrated' to Australia - Fa Fa Banfield working on rural properties, Jack taking on his own selection. Before leaving England he married (I mean Fa Fa Banfield) Ellen Harrington, an employee of the aforementioned "Squire" Dallison. She joined him in Australia some year or so later and mother (MARY ELLEN BANFIELD) was born at Hay. (Joe has her birth certificate). Ellen died when mother was 16 and mother (Nellie) went teaching. Ultimately she married me - she was about 10 years older than myself. JACK BANFIELD (brother of Fa Fa Banfield) married Elizabeth ------- and they had one son born Lake Cargelligo - TED - yes the same Cousin Ted who visits now and then from Lake Cargelligo.
Up to the end of world war 1, Nellie (I mean your mother Jack), used to correspond with mother's people (the Harrington's who of course were Irish, but living in England). However, due to War conditions addresses were lost and never recovered. She had cousins in the army. I do not know what has happened to any of them.
Of my FATHER'S PEOPLE I know but little. My Dad's father's name was, I believe WILLIAM, he married Miss Ludman - relative of a Professor Ludman of Cambridge University. They had money (the Ludmans I mean). Grandfather Hall formed a property near Yass and there were several children - the details, as I know them, are on the roughly drawn family 'tree'. The last of the family was a girl ETHEL (my Father's sister) who was born after he left home at the age of 14 to teach. He never saw Ethel till she came to Junee to see us - she was then 16 years old. Later she married a baker at Moss Vale
I have completely lost touch with them but I know Ethel had a family.
I think it may be worth while to return to Uncle Joe, one of Grandfather Moloney's family. As I said he had a lovely daughter Nellie. He also had a daughter Vera and a son. They also adopted a son. Last I heard was that the son had turned out a bad egg but the adopted lad had turned out a winner and ownder his own garage at Bondi. I should also mention that, at one time Joe was a heavy drinker, but, later gave it away and for the last thirty years of his life, never touched a drop!!!!
Well, Jack, Jean, Elizabeth and Andrew, I think this about gives a little resume of the family history. Joe has some of my papers, Pat will certainly have something to add and I will pass in the address of young Element who, by now, should have a pretty complete picture from his own 'invesigations'. You could mention I suggested you write him. I cannot find his christian name, however his mother's address is:
Mrs. Eileen Element
xxx St, LIDCOMBE N.S.W.
Mrs Element is, of course Auntie Mag's daughter Eileen, and it was her son who write me. Incidentally, I have found the address of Auntie Mag's eldest daughter, it is:
Mrs Nell Love,
xxxxxx Rd, WENTWORTHVILLE, N.S.W.
Anyway, the clarion call has just gone out for tea and I will have to leave rather abruptly - which leave please excuse. Also typing and lack of other news.
Love from us all,
Your affec. POP