Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Extension to the DNA test offer

From FamilyTreeDNA, the company that does our Fitz(-)henry DNA project tests:

In the last few days we have received several e-mails from group administrators asking us to extend our "Unparalleled 50% Promotional Discount" Y-DNA37+mtDNA for $119 (the regular project price is $248 – a reduction of more than 50%!!), as many people are only now becoming aware of the promotion.

We have decided, therefore, to extend it until June 30th, 2009. Kits must be paid by July 7, 2009. Use this link to place your order and link your results to our Fitz(-)henry study:


What else can I say, except "Go for it chaps!"

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Monday, 22 June 2009

Yet another Australian Line - Wolverhampton England to New South Wales Australia

In the course of his research into his own Fitzhenrys, Alan Hagenson has also pieced together this tree. Wolverhampton (near Birmingham in the West Midlands) isn't a place where you would expect to find Fitzhenrys, so sometime soon I'm going to have to visit the archives there to see if I can find out more about this family in the days before civil birth registration and the census.

John FITZHENRY, occupation steward married Catherine (unknown surname).

One child that we know about
John FITZHENRY b. 1828 in Wolverhampton ENG, d. 1900, Maclean Rv, NSW. Selected land at Palmers Is., nr Grafton, Clarence River NSW in 7/3/1867. 86 acres, Co.Clarence, parish Taloumbi, lot D, portn.160. sale at Grafton. NSW.
He married Julia CARTER, in12 Apr 1860, at Scots Church, Sydney NSW. She was b. 1838, Oxford, ENG, d. 1891, Maclean NSW.

Their six children were:
William C FITZHENRY, b. 1861, Maclean NSW, occupation carter, Maclean, NSW, d. 1930, Maclean NSW.

John FITZHENRY, b. 1865, Grafton NSW, d. 1867, Grafton NSW.

Thomas FITZHENRY b. 1870. See below *

Catherine E FITZHENRY, b. 1872, Grafton NSW. She married Charles James PHILP, on 17 Feb 1891, in Maclean, NSW, (He was b. 12 Jan 1868, Hexham, NSW, d. 1 Sep 1955, Sth Tweed Heads NSW.)

John FITZHENRY, b. 1877, Grafton NSW, d. 1878, Grafton NSW.

Allen Eugene FITZHENRY, b. 1879, Maclean NSW.

Third Generation

* Thomas FITZHENRY, b. 1870, Grafton NSW, occupation farmer, Palmers Is. NSW. He married Bridget UMSTEATTER in 1893, in Maclean, NSW.

Their children were:
Catherine FITZHENRY, b. 1895, Maclean NSW.
Patrick Edmund Miles FITZHENRY, b. 1902, Maclean NSW.
Mary E FITZHENRY, b. 1904, Maclean NSW.
William J FITZHENRY, b. 1905, Maclean NSW.
Margaret FITZHENRY, b. 1898, Maclean NSW.
John FITZHENRY, b. 1900, Maclean NSW, d. 1902, Maclean NSW.

Does anyone recognise any of these people? And what of the Wolverhampton connection? If some kind soul is planning a trip to the Wolverhampton archives, would they mind doing a look-up on John Fitzhenry's birth/baptism in the parish registers in 1828 please? Thanks.

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Sunday, 21 June 2009

Another Australian lineage - Ireland to Queensland

Last month Alan Hagenson from Queensland Australia sent me the Fitzhenry family line that his sister had married into. (Sorry it's taken this long to get it up on the Blog, Alan!)
This is being actively researched so if anyone recognises the people in this line or wants to be put in touch with Alan or his sister please drop us a line.
I've put the first three generations of Alan's tree here - there are more recent generations with living individuals, but you will have to contact Alan to share these.

Martin FITZHENRY, occupation Labourer.
He married Julia DOYLE, b. Clohasta Ireland (daughter of Patrick DOYLE and Bridget RYAN) occupation Servant.
Julia came alone to Australia in 1854; her son was born while she was detained in the immigrant's depot.

Martin John FITZHENRY b. 1845.
Bridget FITZHENRY, b. 1846, Co.Kilkenny, IRE., d. 22 May 1865, St.Vincents Hosp. Sydney, buried: 24 May 1865, Sydney, NSW.
Michael Herbert FITZHENRY b. 7 Oct 1854.

Second Generation

Martin John FITZHENRY, b. 1845, Graiguenamangh, Kilkenny, IRE, occupation teacher,Tomki, Casino, NSW, d. 28 May 1917, Murwillumbah, NSW.
He married Caroline ASKEW in 1873 in Richmond Rv Nth NSW (daughter of Isaiah ASKEW and Louisa Bridget DAVIES) occupation Hospital matron, Casino NSW, d. 1942, Casino, NSW.

Their children were:
Julia Bridget FITZHENRY, b. 1874, Sydney NSW, occupation certified nurse at Casino, NSW.

Alice Mary FITZHENRY, b. 1876, Adelong, NSW. She married Thomas G PIDCOCK, in 1899 in Casino, NSW.

Mary FITZHENRY, b. 1879, Grafton NSW, d. 1879, Grafton NSW.

Martin Gerald FITZHENRY, b. 1881, Grafton NSW, d. 1962, Sutherland, NSW.

Charles Ambrose FITZHENRY, b. 1884, Grafton NSW, d. 1975, NSW.

Caroline A A FITZHENRY, b. 1890, Adelong NSW.

Eileen K FITZHENRY, b. 1893, Casino, NSW, d. 1893, Casino, NSW.

John F FITZHENRY, d. 1932, Murwillumbah, NSW. He married Letitia E LAYCOCK, in 1916, in Murwillumbah. NSW.

Michael Herbert FITZHENRY, b. 7 Oct 1854, Parramatta NSW, occupation Innkeeper at Casino, NSW, d. 5 Feb 1910, 520 Bourke St, Ultimo, NSW.
He married Elizabeth Mortimer MADDEN, 23 Nov 1878, in Casino./ St.Pats, Parramatta? NSW, b. 1858, Wollongong, NSW, (daughter of Patrick MADDEN and Ann FLANNAGAN) d. 7 Jul 1919, Paddington NSW.

Their children were:
Patrick Michael 'Sunny' FITZHENRY, b. 1880, Casino NSW, occupation tram guard, d. 1 Sep 1935, Burwood NSW, buried: Waverley NSW. Boer War veteran.
He married Eleanor S BENTLEY, date/place 1920, in Burwood NSW. No issue.

Andrew Gregory FITZHENRY b. 1881.

Mary Mabel FITZHENRY, b. 1882, Casino NSW, d. 1 Apr 1945, Paddington, NSW. She married Frederick Granville ROSE, date/place 1933, in Paddington NSW, d. 1943, Paddington NSW.

Gertrude Florence FITZHENRY, b. 1885, Casino, d. 3 Sep 1965. She married William J KING, in 1921, in Paddington NSW.

Martin James FITZHENRY, b. 1887, Casino NSW, occupation stockman, d. 14 Sep 1968, buried: Waverley. family grave. Archon(deacon) Sacred Heart , Kensington.1942 late 1st AIF.

Charles Edward FITZHENRY, b. 1889, Sandy Ck,Casino NSW, occupation shearer, d. 21 Aug 1918, France, buried Aug 1918, Le Treport, France. Memorial of death found on parents grave at Waverley. NSW. served as William Doyle (More information may be found on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website.)

James Francis FITZHENRY b. 1891.

Madeline 'Madge' FITZHENRY b. 1893.

Arthur Augustine FITZHENRY, b. 1895, Casino NSW, occupation Soldier, d. 14 Oct 1920, Paddington NSW, buried: Waverley, with 3 brothers.

To Alan's tree, I could add the following information:
From the website:
Graig or Graignamanagh Roman Catholic Parish Records, Baptismal index 1838
Mary Fitzhenry
dau of Martin Fitzhenry and Judith Doyle
bapt 8 Dec 1838

Is there a decendant of Mary out there as well?

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Saturday, 20 June 2009

The Newest FitzHenry

I'd like to welcome the newest FitzHenry into the world. Enoch FitzHenry's great-great-great-great-great granddaughter, Jaclyn Elizabeth FitzHenry, was born Wednesday, June 17, 2009.

I'm an aunt again. :-)

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Wednesday, 17 June 2009

The wrong Anastasia Welch ...

Some while ago Wendy Rutter sent me some information about the family of Michael Fitzhenry and Anastasia Welch that she had had passed to her from another Fitzhenry researcher.
I was quite excited about this, as the information said that Michael Fitzhenry had been baptised in St Peter's Church, Nottingham in April 1793.

Now Nottinghamshire (where I live) is one of the most Fitzhenry-less places in England, so have even one record to dig out of our local archives would be fab.
St Peter's Church is right in the middle of the city centre and is the oldest building in Nottingham in continuous use. It may not be as grand as St Mary's which is cathedral-like in its architecture, but for hundreds of years it has been the church of the working people of Nottingham. Here's more about it.

So I was really excited about taking this family back one more generation. All of the parish records for Nottinghamshire are on fiche at the local archives. Unfortunately the fiche for St Peter's baptisms 1780-1794 looked as though it was the "go to" fiche that all researchers started with, manufactured in the 1970s, very faded, very scratched and a little warped.
Although the writing was very faint indeed, there was nothing that approximated to Michael Fitzhenry for April 1793 .... or the whole of 1793 .... or even for the whole of the fiche.

Perhaps this wasn't the St Peter's in Nottingham, but somewhere in Nottinghamshire. Using the archives' parish directory I found that throughout Notts there are 26 parish churches dedicated to St Peter (including 5 Ss Peter and Paul). And Michael wasn't in any of these registers either.

And I also checked the registers of the two other old churches in Nottingham, St Marys and St Nicholas ... and the very small number of Catholic pre-1800 records.

So I went back to the original St Peter's fiche. And cleaned it down with my glasses cleaner, cleaned the fiche reader lens .... and then sat and stared at April 1793 again.
And then it became apparent -
14 April 1793 Anastasia d. of John and Mary Welch (upholsterer)
A eureka moment - further searching on the fiche found
Samuel son of John and Mary Welch (upholsterer) baptised 30 January 1792.
And then on the marriage fiche
John Welch of this parish and Mary Lawrie of this parish were married in this church by licence this twenty seventh day of April 1790 by me Jeremiah Bigsby
In the presence of Ann Lawrie and A Lawrie.
Well, at least if I hadn't found Michael, at least I'd found his wife and her parents....

But you can't let a good find get in the way of facts.
If this indeed was our Anastasia, this would mean that she was in her thirties before she started having her children and her last baby would have been born when she was 47. She would have also been 57 when she died in 1851, although her death certifcate said she was 45.

So reluctantly I've come to the conclusion this is not "our" Anastasia Welch, and that Michael Fitzhenry was not baptised in a St Peter's church anywhere in Nottinghamshire. But it does show the value of going back to the original records and checking things out for yourself.

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Tuesday, 9 June 2009

DNA Project testing prices reduced for June '09!

Our Fitzhenry/Fitz-Henry DNA Project is just over a year old.

We have 2 results in so far, which show 2 completely different male lineages for 2 different Fitzhenry family groups.

If you're a male Fitzhenry and are thinking about joining the study*, or a female Fitzhenry and want to badger a male Fitzhenry relative into joining the study*, then now is the time as the prices have just been reduced again for the month of June.

As study co-ordinator for the Fitz(-)henry DNA Project, I received an email from FamilyTreeDNA (our testing company) today:

Offer summary:
• Y-DNA37+mtDNA for $119. (The regular project price is $248 – a reduction of more than 50%!!)
• The promotion will begin on June 9, 2009 and will end on June 24, 2009
• Kits ordered in this sale must be paid for by June 30, 2009

So click on this link to get to our study page and read about how to join up:

or if you want more information about the whole testing process click on this link:

And when you've joined the Great Fitz(-)henry DNA Project, why not let us know by leaving a comment attached to this post?
We have a sister website dedicated to the Fitz(-)henry DNA Project at:

* sorry, it's only the chaps who can actually take part in the testing as they have the male chromosome which is tested.

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Sunday, 7 June 2009

Beware the spelling of Irish surnames!

When I have a female Fitzhenry who gets married and changes her name, I tend to follow her for another generation to record the rest of her life and the names of all her children.

Ellen Fitz-Henry (born in June 1878 at 25 Star Street Shadwell London) was the cousin of my great grandfather Thomas Fitz-Henry. I already knew that she married John Joseph Marney (born in Gravel Lane, Houndsditch, London in about 1875) in December 1897 at St Marks Whitechapel.

I knew that she had at least 3 children, and in the 1901 census was living at 207 Cable Street.

Dennis Miller emailed me saying that Ellen was his great-grandmother and he was now turning his attentions to researching her side of the family. Apart from the names of the children that I knew about (including Edith Florence Marney his grandmother, Ellen and Patrick) he also thought that there were William, Albert, Victor, Joseph and Clara. This made 8 children in all.

So I spent some time today to see if I could find out any more about this family.

First to the wonderful FreeBMD.
After 1911, the mother's maiden name was included in the indexes, so these four children are definitely children of John and Ellen, even though there is a misspelling of Fitzhenry for Victor:

Mar 1913
Marney William P Fitzhenry Stepney 1c 589

Jun 1914
MARNEY Joseph Fitzhenry Stepney 1c 597

Jun 1916
Marney David Fitzhenry Stepney 1c 523

Sep 1919
Marney Victor F Fitshenry Stepney 1c 395

So with the addition of David to the family, this now made nine children.

So where were they in the 1911 census? There were lots of Ellens and Johns on the 1911census website, but no John Joseph, Patrick or Edith.

Then I remembered that Marney was the phonetic spelling of Mahoney.
So I looked under Mahoney.
And I found them!

The rather messy census form had been filled out by John Joseph himself. He, and all the other other members of the family had their surnames spelt Mahoney.
And here's the raw stats:

born Gravel Lane Houndsditch
born Planet Street ST GEORGES EAST
married 13 years, 8 children 8 living

So this makes 12 children in all.
And bless John for making a gallant stab at guessing where his wife was born - he knew it was somewhere heavenly, so he put Planet Street instead of Star Street!

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Tuesday, 2 June 2009

The Will of Dr George Fitzhenry of Brynmawr Wales

This is one of the wills that I ordered last month. As per the usual style, there is no punctuation.

This is the last Will and Testament of me George Fitzhenry MRCS and LSA of No. 24 King Street Brynmawr in the County of Brecon I direct that my body shall be buried in St. Mary's Churchyard Brynmawr After the payment of my just debts and the expenses of my burial I give and bequeath all my property real and personal including the policy of insurance upon my life to my wife Jane Fitzhenry absolutely I appoint Alexander Lowe Esq. MB Brynmawr and Alfred Maddox Jones Esq. Chemist King Street Brynmawr Executors of this my Will and I hereby revoke all former Wills and Codicils Signed this seventeenth day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety two.
G Fitzhenry Surgeon

George died on October 23rd 1893.
On the 11th day of January 1894 Administration with this Will of the effects of the Testator was granted at Hereford to Jane Fitzhenry Widow of the Residuary Legatee.

So a trip to Brymawr was called for which coincided nicely with a holiday to Wales. If George had specifed his final resting place so precisely, surely it was going to be easy to find his grave? Wrong!
After about a quarter hour working my way up and down the rows of Welsh granite headstone through the long grass in the churchyard of St Mary the Virgin Brynmawr, the overseer of the council grass cutters came over to ask me who I was looking for. She said that she was sure that she had seen George's gravestone but couldn't remember where in the churchyard - she would take me down to ask the vicar. I'm sure he was in the middle of his lunch when we knocked at his door, but fair play to him he opened up the church so we could consult the burial registers together. George definitely hadn't been buried in St Mary's churchyard as he had requested.

So this throws up more questions. Why didn't Jane bury George as per his will? Why didn't George recognise Harriett, his daughter by his first marriage? And where is George buried?

My thanks to the Reverend Richard Grey of St Mary's Brynmawr for his assistance in this quest.

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