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    Search for information on Grandfather Ancestry

    I'm trying to find information on my Husbands Grandfather. He was born in Bristol UK ? Between 1891 to 1894. He told the family he was brought up in an orphanage in the UK. He immigrated to Australia? Date.
    He married Florence Atkins in 1926 in Sydney NSW.
    on the marriage certificate it states unknown father and mother but on his death certificate on the 24th March 1979 it states his father as Charles Edward Johnstone.
    He told everyone that the orphanage he was in burnt down and all records burnt with it.
    I have tried to search for orphanages that burnt down but the ones I've seen are either the wrong era or country.
    So we have come up at a dead end.
    ​​​We are hoping that someone may be able to at least point us in the right direction. We have used Ancestry and my heritage and googled until we can google no more, so we are putting it out there.
    Thanking you all in advance for your help.

    #2
    You haven't given his name, alas, and I can't find a marriage for a Florence Atkins in 1926 in Sydney to cross check. Need this to be able to try and help you.

    Comment


      #3
      I think the marriage was Florence E ATKIN & Alfred JOHNSTONE, 1926 Rockdale.

      My instinct is that the orphanage story is a tall tale, but there are these two births that tie in with the names/locations quoted:

      JOHNSTONE, ALFRED mmn BARNHOUSE GRO Reference: 1889 D Quarter in BARTON REGIS Volume 06A Page 53
      JOHNSTON, CHARLES EDWARD mmn BARNHOUSE GRO Reference: 1887 M Quarter in BARTON REGIS Volume 06A Page 58

      I can't see a Johnston(e)/Barnhouse marriage, but in 1891 at Hotwell Road, Clifton, Barton Regis - RG12/1967/140/13
      Kate Johnston 28 married Tailoress b Kildare, Ireland
      Charles Edwd Johnston 4 son b Clifton, Gloucestershire
      Alfred Johnston 1 son b Clifton, Gloucestershire


      Comment


        #4
        1901 – 35 Milsom Street, Bristol - RG13/2380/45/35
        Henry Burgess 47 Railway Carter b Bradford on Avon, Wilts
        Mary A 40 wife b Bristol
        Charlie E Johnson 19 Nephew b Bristol

        1901 – Castle Hill, Axminster, Devon
        Various members of the BOARD family followed by some Boarders, including
        Alfred Johnson 10 born Bristol

        Charles Edward Johnson married Elizabeth Ann Cottle 26 Dec 1904, Bristol, naming his father as Charles Johnson (deceased), Bottler. Alfred was not a witness.

        ADDED: Just twigged (its late!) that the 1901 census etc for Charles Edward is way out on the age so may be a different person, but I'm fairly confident that Alfred is correct.

        Comment


          #5
          Sorry I forgot to mention that my Husbands Grandfather was Alfred Johnstone, not sure of his date of immigration to Australia. I have the marriage certificate to Florence Atkins in Sydney, she later passed away and married Mona B Skinner.
          Alfred Johnstone had three children together. Alfred was cremated and is at Rookwood Cemetery.
          A few of the Johnstone family have tried to find information about Alfred but there seems to be very little. So query the orphanage thing. There surname is Johnstone not Johnson.
          Apparently there is some scottish history in there somewhere as well.
          Sorry for the limited information but as said we are not finding alot about my husband's grandfather Alfred Johnstone.
          Thanking you all again

          Comment


            #6
            Alfred Johnstone had the three children with Florence Atkins, two boys and one girl.

            Comment


              #7
              Which state of Australia did he emigrate to and did he he remain there? Do you know what sort of employment he had when he first arrived?

              I agree with teasie that the orphanage, fire and destroyed records could be a fishy story to cover up personal facts Alfred didn't want to reveal. (A scenario many of us have come across in our own research ) Did he have a second forename? Any known relatives from his early life?
              Janet in Yorkshire



              Genealogists never die - they just swap places in the family tree

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Clifo35L View Post
                Sorry I forgot to mention that my Husbands Grandfather was Alfred Johnstone, not sure of his date of immigration to Australia. I have the marriage certificate to Florence Atkins in Sydney, she later passed away and married Mona B Skinner.
                Alfred Johnstone had three children together. Alfred was cremated and is at Rookwood Cemetery.
                A few of the Johnstone family have tried to find information about Alfred but there seems to be very little. So query the orphanage thing. There surname is Johnstone not Johnson.
                Apparently there is some scottish history in there somewhere as well.
                Sorry for the limited information but as said we are not finding alot about my husband's grandfather Alfred Johnstone.
                Thanking you all again
                Hi Clifo,

                It might be that the reason that you can't find info on Alfred is that he tweaked his surname a little to muddy the waters, so to speak. [to stop folks from trying to dig around in his past/shut folks down from asking too many questions???] From Johnson to Johnstone?
                Do you have the marriage entry for his second marriage to Mona? does this have fathers name on it?

                I wouldn't worry too much about the spelling of the surname, even though they may be spelt differently they sound the same when spoken.. so whoever wrote it down might not have spelt it right.

                It does sound like he is/was possibly hiding something though, tale of orphanage burning down/parents being dead.. yet somehow/miraculously knowing his fathers name was Charles Edward years later.... I don't mean to come across as rude, I'm just pointing out what you have said and my own thoughts/observations.

                Julie
                They're coming to take me away haha hee hee..........

                .......I find dead people

                Comment


                  #9
                  100% agree he wasn't honest about his origins. Potentially he was illegitimate, so johnstone or johnson may be the mother's name, or of a step father's.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by teasie View Post
                    I think the marriage was Florence E ATKIN & Alfred JOHNSTONE, 1926 Rockdale.

                    My instinct is that the orphanage story is a tall tale, but there are these two births that tie in with the names/locations quoted:

                    JOHNSTONE, ALFRED mmn BARNHOUSE GRO Reference: 1889 D Quarter in BARTON REGIS Volume 06A Page 53
                    JOHNSTON, CHARLES EDWARD mmn BARNHOUSE GRO Reference: 1887 M Quarter in BARTON REGIS Volume 06A Page 58

                    I can't see a Johnston(e)/Barnhouse marriage, but in 1891 at Hotwell Road, Clifton, Barton Regis - RG12/1967/140/13
                    Kate Johnston 28 married Tailoress b Kildare, Ireland
                    Charles Edwd Johnston 4 son b Clifton, Gloucestershire
                    Alfred Johnston 1 son b Clifton, Gloucestershire

                    Following on from this, there is a transcription of a baptism on findMyPast:

                    First name(s) Alfred
                    Last name Johnston
                    Town Bristol
                    Sex Male
                    County Gloucestershire
                    Baptism year 1889
                    Country England
                    Baptism date 10 Oct 1889
                    Archive Bristol Archives
                    Baptism place Clifton Wood, St Peter, Gloucestershire, England
                    Archive reference Baptisms, 1886-1907 (P/St PCW/R/1/c)
                    Father's first name(s) Edward
                    Father's last name Johnston
                    Category Birth, Marriage, Death & Parish Records
                    Mother's first name(s) Kate
                    Mother's last name Johnston
                    Collections from England, Great Britain
                    Linda


                    My avatar is my Grandmother Carolina Meulenhoff 1896 - 1955

                    Comment


                      #11
                      There is a death in Sep Q 1934 in Bristol for a Kathleen Barnhouse, aged 72.

                      I have also found an entry for a marriage in 1894 for Charles Edward Johnstone to Flora Thomas in Bristol

                      https://www.ancestry.co.uk/imageview...794&pId=567657

                      Charles died in 1895. Flora is with her parents in 1901, a widow with a 2 year old baby - I'd be very surprised if Charles were the father.

                      https://search.ancestry.co.uk/cgi-bi...&rhSource=9842

                      https://www.ancestry.co.uk/imageview...4&pId=12830640


                      I wonder if Charles Edward and Kate lived together and had 2 sons they registered in the name of Johnstone, but then Charles married Flora and died. As Kate was technically never married when she died she was registered in her maiden name. Maybe by saying he was an orphan Alfred would be able to hide his past. I can't find Kate after 1891 yet.
                      Linda


                      My avatar is my Grandmother Carolina Meulenhoff 1896 - 1955

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I think this is Kate in 1911

                        https://search.ancestry.co.uk/cgi-bi...=successSource
                        Linda


                        My avatar is my Grandmother Carolina Meulenhoff 1896 - 1955

                        Comment


                          #13
                          This tree seems to have come to the same conclusion about Charles Edward Sr. (Apologies if it is yours)

                          https://www.ancestry.co.uk/family-tr...84728277/facts
                          Linda


                          My avatar is my Grandmother Carolina Meulenhoff 1896 - 1955

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Bristol Parish Registers are on FamilySearch: https://www.familysearch.org/search/collection/1718965

                            Charles Edward Johnstone

                            Alfred Johnston

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Thank you all so much for your wonderful help with this information.
                              The plot thickens with all of this; as one person in the family stopped at Alfred as he said he was an orphane.
                              Alfred departed England in 1908 December.
                              Both Alfred and Flora lived in Croyden NSW Australia and had three children together.
                              Florence died in March 1945.
                              Alfred then married Mona Milbourn in 1951.
                              Alfred died in 1979 and was cremated and is a Roockwood Cemetery in Sydney NSW.
                              Alfred doesn't appear to have a middle name check on marriage certificates and death certificate and no middle name.
                              So any information anyone can supply so that we can get a full picture of things would be a great help.
                              My poor dearly departed mother-in-law was told there was Scottish Heriatige on the Johnstone family side as well, but now this puts everything in doubt. .
                              As said anything that clear things up and clear the Muddy Waters would be greatly appreciated.
                              thank you all again for you wonderful help as I am at a real loss.

                              Comment


                                #16
                                Have you considered doing a DNA test? This won't give you an exact answer but could point you in the direction of his ancestors and help to narrow it down and maybe confirm the findings suggested above.
                                Anne

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  I agree about the DNA test - it is amazing what you can find out. Ancestry in Australia has them currently on special for $99.oo plus postage.
                                  Phil

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by Phil the Victorian View Post
                                    I agree about the DNA test - it is amazing what you can find out. Ancestry in Australia has them currently on special for $99.oo plus postage.
                                    Phil
                                    and you can also sometimes get them massively reduced in price when Black Friday occurs.. [November time I think]
                                    Julie
                                    They're coming to take me away haha hee hee..........

                                    .......I find dead people

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by Clifo35L View Post
                                      Thank you all so much for your wonderful help with this information.
                                      The plot thickens with all of this; as one person in the family stopped at Alfred as he said he was an orphane.
                                      Alfred departed England in 1908 December.

                                      Alfred doesn't appear to have a middle name check on marriage certificates and death certificate and no middle name.
                                      So any information anyone can supply so that we can get a full picture of things would be a great help.
                                      Don't forget that sometimes people didn't mention that they have middle names.. someone that was registering the death might not have known that the person had a middle name... if they didn't talk about it.
                                      Just be open to all suggestions... when a friend of mine died his death was registered but the person that registered his death didn't know that he had two middle names.. they just registered him as Richard Edward Bloggs and not Richard Edward Desmond Bloggs..
                                      Julie
                                      They're coming to take me away haha hee hee..........

                                      .......I find dead people

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        Re the baptism at post #10, the image is as follows:

                                        6 Oct 1889 Alfred s/o Edward & Kate Johnstone, 96 Hotwell Road, Tailor.

                                        Also: 13 Apr 1887 (born 29 Jan 1887) Charles Edward s/o Edward & Kate Johnson, 94 Hotwell Road, Tailor

                                        In 1891 at Bristol General Hospital, Commercial Road, Bedminster - RG12/1946/71/3
                                        Edward Johnson, 41, Married, Tailor born Ealey, Warwickshire

                                        Comment

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