Why the name? – Seeking Susan ~ Meeting Marie ~ Finding Family…

On 13 May 1855  a 19 year old County Clare colleen was fleeing the Irish Potato Famine, aboard the Nashwauk, when the “bride ship” foundered off the coast of South Australia.  How I loved the colourful stories of my Susan’s dramatic entry to Australia, especially that of the girls being carried ashore on the backs of the sailors, and so began my love affair with my maternal Great Great Grandmother Susan Kelleher. A chance visit to County Clare, in 1994, triggered my determination to seek out Susan and discover her fate. Who did she marry?  How many children did she have, apart from my Great Grandmother? Where did she live? Where did she die? … So many unanswered questions. So I began “Seeking Susan”.

It was on a return trip to Ireland the following year that my quest widened and led to me “Meeting Marie”, my dad’s mum Marie Ogilvie. My aging father, distressed that no family members could find any sight or sign of his childhood home, in Yorkshire, would mutter “34 Mossman Street, Windhill OFF CRAG ROAD!! Shipley … it has to be there!!!”  ~~~  So, after landing at Dublin Airport, I took a ferry across to England, a bus to Leeds and a train to Shipley intent on bringing back photographs to give some peace to dad in his declining years. 

Easier said that done!!!  With every muscle aching in the trudge, yet again, up that interminably long and steep Crag Road I began muttering about “… a wild goose chase” and entertaining thoughts of giving up when there I “met” Marie. Don’t ask me how I knew it was the spirit of  Marie Ogilvie which came with encouragement and confirmation that I was on the right path .  Drawn to an old corner hotel I peered hopefully at the road sign and along the street.  Nope, not Mossman Street, but Marie’s affirming presence was SO strong! …  Further investigation showed that the house, and Mossman Street, had been just one street over and removed in the 1960’s renewal project. 

For some 20 years the spirit my maternal Great Great Grandmother, Susan Kelleher, and paternal Grandmother, Marie Ogilvie have travelled with me in “Finding Family”, wherever they may be.

Retirement and the digitisation of many records has been so hepful in my quest which has been full of fun & laughter, as well of moments of bitter disappointment, soon to be surpassed by the discovery of an unknown relative, like my Auntie Annie Ruby Crout, and the excitement of emailing with a living Ogilvie relation and discovering that he moved from the UK to Victoria, Australia in the 1960’s.  With a snippet of information from John Ogilvie, discovering which of my dad’s Auntie’s emigrated to Western Australia was fantastic and there’s now the exciting possibility of locating more living relatives in the West.

I’ve now begun transferring all this data into stories, which locate the individuals within the social and physical environment of the time, to share with family.  Most are not terribly interested in trawling through names, dates and places but are fascinated with the lives of their Ancestors. This has led to the setting up of this blog.

My aim is to not only tell the family stories but also share the journey and the resources I’ve found useful, particularly those relating to South Australia. If you care to join me that would be fun. 

Catherine Crout-Habel

Copyright (c) 2012 Catherine Crout-Habel

58 thoughts on “ABOUT THIS BLOG

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    • Thanks Lynda. Figured blog needed a “facelift” 🙂 … is wedding of my mum’s cousin Ron to Joy. His brother Len is the “Best Man”… mum is “Matron of Honour” (second on the right)… guess who’s the “Flower Girl? …

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  8. Wonderful story; it’s so lovely that you are creating this resource for your family and allowing us all to enjoy it. Thanks!

  9. Hi Catherine
    I believe that we have relatives in common. I have been in contact with Geoff E.
    Caroline Crout (I have a photo of her) married George Thomas Cozens. They would have been my Great-Great Grandparents. Thanks for all your information on John Thomas Crout.
    Jane C.

    • G’day Jane… delighted to hear from you and pleased you’re following my blog. If you go to the sidebar and click on Crout. in the categories, you’ll find some extra info there. Rosa Patience is interesting. Hope you may have some info on her.
      Yep… Caroline is the sister of my Great Great Grandfather, Henry Edward Crout… and of course they’re both siblings of the famous John Thomas. It Was Geoff who told me about JTCjunior’s “derring do on the high seas” 🙂 I’m wondering if he sent you a copy of the printout I did to help him sort out the JTC’s on his tree. No worries. I’ll email you direct. Thanks for contacting me. I have a half cousin who lives close to you over in Quebec, whose also doing research, so I’ll link you up with her too. Oh, the wonders of the internet, eh? Cheerio for now.

  10. Thanks so much for your reply…..I would love to find out more. I was at a complete standstill (and still am with the Cozens line) but when Geoff connected me with the Crout side, it opened up a whole new world. I sometimes get lost in all the people. I have looked at Rosa myself and she does seem to have fallen off the face of the earth. The person that shows up as a “servant” was born in 1853 and is shown as a widow, I believe whereas our RP was born in about 1849. It is so difficult because there is no way to find all this out. Are you on Ancestry.com??.
    Take care

    • G’day Jane… a quick reply and then I’ll email you. Took me a long time to sort out your Cozens Ancestors in my tree… puff puff puff … Another point of interest is that Caroline’s brother, Henry Edward Crout (my GGGrandfather) also married a Cozens. They had my GGrandfather and she died very young. Have lots of Crout info to share 🙂
      Yep… I’m on Ancestry but changed my tree to private… happy to give you access … Toodle-oo for now and I’m off to email you…
      Cheers, Cousin Catherine

    • No worries… you’ve already been very helpful with my tree Janet but just haven’t known it. e.g. I was grateful to get some info from your tree on one of the Cozens, but just can’t remember which right now, as well as a couple of photos. It’s good to be able to thankyou and pay you back… 🙂

      • Glad we’ve long got all that sorted Jane, my lovely… Crikey, now we’ve gone and set up our own personal Facebook group for the easy sharing of family history discoveries, photographs etc. Much xxx to you and yours, up there in Canada…always.

    • Can’t begin to tell you how delighted I am that you’ve found me Marisa and hope you enjoy the stories because they are also rellies of yours, in a kind of a round about way 😉 … xxx

  11. Join you? I certainly shall. I`ve spent many exciting years following my ancestors, often to the point of dreaming I`d met them and waking up disappointed! Looking forward to reading your stories and following your research.

    • Wonderful to have you sharing the journey and hope you enjoy it… I’m constantly meeting my Ancestors in my sleep time too and they often jostle each other to have me focus on their own story next 🙂
      However, it’s my Susan who never leaves my side. Maybe when I finally locate her family/ our family in County Clare she’ll settle…

    • Thanks so much for this message. Means more that you could believe right now cos I’m again under attack, yet again, for “speaking the truth” and putting the documentary evidence out there for others to make up their own minds based on factual, and verifiable info 😯 and I laugh my head off 😆

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    • How lovely, thank you for remembering my Mum, Catherine Crout-Habel, taken from us almost four months ago, way before her time. Lovely to hear that she is remembered for enriching peoples lives 🙂

  14. You are a South Australian, so am I was reading your about and wondered do you know anything about the McAvaney Name in Geaneology

    • No, sorry, this was my Mum’s blog. She was the genealogist, and I don’t know of any information about McAvaney. Good luck on your search.

  15. Hi Catherine, did you see the little article in the weekend paper about the celebration of the relocation of the anchor? It’s going to be held in May apparently.

    • Hi Kerry, I am Catherine’s daughter, Kirrily. I’m sorry to tell you Mum passed away in July last year. She no doubt would have known all about celebrations of the relocation of the anchor. Regards, Kirrily

  16. Hi Kirra,I am another “rellie”” re Susan Kelleher.Yes there is a celebration by the local school children re a sausage sizzle & info day at the now returned anchor.It will be on the 13th May in celebration of the 160 anna of the shipwreck.The lady to contact re numbers attending is Joanna Chappell 0412 630 518 or kenjocha@optusnet.com.au
    A pity we didn’t know sooner for interstate people wanting to attend but I understand it is not a ceromony as such just a get together to exchange info & acknowledge the return of the anchor.As I live in Victoria I am unable to attend but would love to hear from any “descendants”who do and any info they come across. Wyn Thompson

    • Hi Wyn. Thank you for this information. Unfortunately, I have been remiss at checking Mum’s blog and have only just seen this now. Regards, Kirrily

    • Hi Wyn, thank you. We are about to head on a big trip to the Emerald Isle. Looking foward to spending some time soaking up the areas that our descendants hailed from, including County Clare, where Susan was from. Regards, Kirrily

  17. G’day Catherine
    I am the youngest of Don Mundy’s three sons. Susan Kelleher was my 3XGreat Grandmother. It has been fascinating reading about one branch of my family! Beautifully written and well researched. Thank you for filling in so many details.
    All the best

    • Hi Steve,

      I’m Kirrily – I’m Catherine’s daughter. Mum passed away in July 2014, but I” keeping her blog alive. Glad you are enjoying reading about this branch of your family – this is just what Mum wanted.

      Best wishes,

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