Arrival

Early in the antipodean Spring of 1973 I stood on the deck of an old passenger ship, Ellinis, as it sailed through the heads of Sydney Harbour and made its way slowly towards the iconic Bridge and Opera House. It was the end of a four and a half week voyage from England. I was... Continue Reading →

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Reconstructing the Byrne family

I am descended from four Kerry families of the nineteenth century: their names are Byrne, Hickson, Needham and Ruddle. My maternal grandmother was Gertrude Byrne and her parents, both Irish born, were George Byrne and Susie Hickson. George’s parents were George Byrne (senior) and Sarah Ruddle, while Susie’s parents were William Hickson and Mary Needham. My paternal grandmother... Continue Reading →

Coastguard

I had a letter from my mother's cousin, Keith Walmsley, a few years back. I had asked him what he knew about our Irish forbears - my great great grandmother (who is Keith’s great grandmother) was Mary Hickson, who came out to Australia with her husband William from Kerry in 1877. Mary Hickson was the... Continue Reading →

Two nailors of Derryquin

William Hickson and George Byrne I have known for some time that William Hickson (1832-1899) of Killorglin, who later migrated to America and then Australia, was a nailor. It says so clearly on his marriage certificate: While looking through some records for George Byrne (1860-1929), who married William Hickson's daughter Susie many years later in... Continue Reading →

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