Monday, December 19, 2011

Clearing the attic

The other day we were looking for something in one of our two attics and came across a box of photos and memorabilia that had belonged, Celia tells me, to my mother.  I've scanned some of the photos: they're a random mix, so you'll just have to take them as they come.  (And there'll be more.)

The first group were photographed at the family reunion in 1976: from the left we have three sisters: Anne and Tess Hannagan, Rose (Gallagher) and their cousin Mona.  (I have three Mona Hannagans listed on the family tree, so I'm not quite sure which one this is, though my bet is on Mona Thomas.)

The next picture comes from four years later: the three sisters have not aged well, although it must be admitted they weren't young ladies either (Anne was 84, Tess, 81 and Rose, 88).  Rose is in the middle, and died a year later. 

In this photo we have cousins of a different generation.  I think it's Denise Hannagan on the left, with Kathleen Ryan behind her; Anne (?) Ryan in the front, and Mary Stokes at the right.

By way of contrast, to the left we have a group of boy cousins: Paul Stokes, myself, John Ryan and Raymond Hannagan.

On the right is Terry Hannagan on his wedding day, with Monica (nee McCabe), his new wife, and Jack (his younger brother) and Phil (Monica's sister).

The photo below is of Des and Monica at their wedding - the quality isn't so good because this is already a copy of an original.  

And the photo above was taken at Brian O'Flaherty's wedding to Jean.   Brian's parents, Des and Joyce O'Flaherty (nee Hannagan) at to the left, with Terry, their other son beside them.  On the other side of the couple is Pat O'Flaherty, and presumably Jean's parents.

Finally we have a photo of Jack Hannagan as a boy - I have no idea who the Bishop is, or the other two boys.   [Wikipedia tells us that James Whyte was Bishop of Dunedin from 1920 to 1957, but there was also a coadjutor Bishop, Hugh O'Neill, from 1943-1946.  My guess is that it's more likely Whyte.]

Friday, October 21, 2011

Durants, Tunnellers, and what connections?

I've had a phone call and a couple of emails from Sue Baker Wilson, who is doing some research on a group called the New Zealand Engineers Tunnelling Company  These men were often engineers who were used in the First World War to undermine the enemy lines and other subversive jobs.   

She rang because there seems to be a connection with one of the Tunnellers to people connected to our family, the Durants.  Emily Durant married Arthur Joyce, and was thus my grandmother's sister-in-law.  Her sister was Alice Durant.   You can see a very small amount about them here.

Sue wrote: 

I have been searching for information. A Paperspast article, refs below, refers to Mrs Durant, Leeston, who was a widow of W Harding and who married Thomas W. Durant. A 1917 In Memoriam inserted by ‘her loving daughters, Ada and Nellie’ refers to her as Alice Durant. It would appear that Alice was stepmother to the tunneller I am researching, W M Durant and possibly the person shown on your website.

Tunneller officer William Durant’s family are linked to Leeston & Christchurch. A Star, 12 Feb 1907 article notes that The mining scholarship for the West Coast has been won this year by Mr W M Durant, eldest son of Mr T W Durant, formerly of Leeston and Christchurch.

Ellesmere Guardian, Volume XXII, Issue 3838, 4 October 1916, Page 2
This article tells us that The death occurred at the residence of her son in-law, Mr G, H. Jones, Selwyn Street, Leeston, on Sunday night, of Mrs Durant, relict of tbe late Mr Thomas Durant, formerly of Sumner and St. Albans, and for many years a prominent Leeston business man.
There is no mention in the obituary of Durant senior's first family, if this is the same Thomas Durant, father to Lieut Durant. I cannot find any obituary to a Thomas Durant. Mrs Alice Durant, was remembered by her daughters Ada Jones (Mrs George Henry Jones) of Leeston and Nellie (Rackely). G H Jones  died in England 1931. He had had a carrying business operating between Leeston and ChCh before going back to settle in England. A report says he was twice married and at the time of his death a couple of sons were still in Leeston. One of these son’s, Albert Edward died in 1945. At that time, some of his son’s still resided in Leeston.

W M Durant’s name does not appear on the Leeston war memorial.

Lieut Durant’s wife and children are buried together in Arundel cemetery, Strathalian County, Canterbury. Robert died 22 Dec 1968. According to the Timaru District Council cemetery database Jessie died after her son 15 Dec 1977, which differs from the 1975 info you have found. Margaret Ralston (Audrey) Durant died 10 August 2006. Attached grave pic.

It doesn’t look like there were any offspring for any of William Durant’s children.

If you find any family links to either Durant or Jones, I would be interested in knowing more.
I haven't had time so far to dig into this further, but if any other member of the family knows something about them, I'd be interested to hear.   

Kathleen and Bill Wilson

Kathleen Wilson (a cousin of my mother) died during the week.  Her funeral was held at St
Andrews Rest Home on the 20th Oct, 2011.  It was the second funeral in about six weeks for the family as Kathleen's husband, Bill, died recently.  Bill was buried from St Andrews as well. 

Kathleen and Bill used to live in Barr St and she was a St Francis Xavier parishioner for many years.  She and Monica Stokes were the same age and great friends in their younger days.  She has been at St Andrews suffering with Alzheimers for the last four years.  Bill, who had broken his hip, spent the last few months of
his life there also.

My aunt, Daphne Hannagan, spoke to two of the family: Pauline, with whom she had worked briefly years ago.  Pauline now lives in Australia.  She also spoke to
Stephen and his wife who live in Cargill St.  Marie
and Ann are the other two members of the family.  

Rose Gallagher (nee Hannagan) was Kathleen's mother.   Rose was one of my grandfather's sisters (Charles Hannagan), which means, of course, that she was my great-aunt.  I can remember her name, and I know I met her when I was very young, but I don't remember much more about her.    I'd like to fit Kathleen into the family tree, but I need to be clear as to whether I've got her relationship with Rose correct.  

Thursday, October 06, 2011

New arrivals

Just a short note from Bernadette Hannagan to say that: 
Taran Broc Hannagan was born on Saturday October 1 to Andrew and Sian Hannagan. He is a beautiful little boy 9 lbs 7oz safely delivered at home (by choice)
(Andrew is Raymond and Bernadette's son).   
 And an equally short note from Bex Dixon (Hannagan - Mark and Debbie's daughter)
Anthony and I have also had our second child, Theodore Clayton Dixon born 8th September 2011 weighing 8lb 14oz :) 

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

New grandchild, and Jack Scragg

Margaret Irvine has just written to say that she has another grandson. She wrote:
Rhonda Irvine and her partner Damian had their second son on September 1.
His name is Charlie Ismael De La O (somewhat exotic for this Pacific Celt family) and he is, of course, just wonderful.

And news on another front: several months ago I received an email from Jack (John) Scragg.   This was a name I remembered from my childhood - he had been (unofficially?) adopted by one of my grandfather's sisters and her husband.   Jack had lived through the Napier earthquake, and subsequently had come south because his mother and my great aunt were friends.  How things worked out from there, I'm not entirely sure.

I spoke to Jack on the phone several times: we were going to meet up (he lived in Waikouaiti - in Otago) but there was often a health issue on his side (he had cancer) or some complication on ours.   Regrettably we never got to meet face to face and late last month we saw his death notice in the paper.  He sounded like a great bloke, and was very friendly.    RIP, John....

Friday, April 29, 2011

Alice Durant

Another in the recent series of photos I've been scanning. This is a photo of Alice Durant and Flora Joyce (my maternal grandmother). Alice was a sister of Emily Durant. Emily married Arthur Thomas (?) Joyce, one of the sons of Milliman Thomas Joyce (my maternal great-grandfather).
The back of the photo has some words written in a somewhat childish hand - not one I recognise. It says Alice Durant No Relation to us sister of Emily Durant. As far as I can work out she's the one sitting. My grandmother is standing.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Digging deeper

After my last post I heard from John DeCourcy who gave me some updates on the information I'd supplied and added some further details - plus an interesting picture.

Firstly he added some clarity to the story of Francis Hannagan. We've mentioned this before, some time ago. He writes:

Are you aware of this particular skeleton in the family cupboard.? How Francis had a wife in Dunedin (Catherine Comer) then went off to the Victorian goldfields, claimed Mary Ann Cairns/Kearns as his wife there, had 4 children with her, came back to Dunedin, had Charles with Catherine, Catherine then dies a few months later (no cause of death on the death certificate), and he then officially marries Mary Ann Cairns in Dunedin? No wonder our very proper grandparents thought there was no point at all in pursuing Hannagan genealogy! I have much of the official documentation around this, which I un-earthed by a chance encounter with a Marnie Hannagan in Melbourne who is a descendant of Mary Ann.

Well, that certainly adds a bit of colour to the family tree!

He also pointed out that the copy of John and Bridget's family picture that I posted is actually a reverse version of the original:

The other day I wrote that there were two girls in the photo. There aren't. One of the girls is actually John wasn't uncommon to dress boys in what we would now regard as a girlish fashion, especially on formal occasions like having a photo taken. John DeCourcy thinks he would have been 3-4 years old at this point.

And now to the 'interesting' picture.

John writes about this photo: The Hannagan photo I am really interested in is attached. The version I have looks like a copy of a copy of a copy, and is a generation earlier than the one you have. I would dearly love to know where the original of this set of photos is, and would be happy to pay to have a good-quality reproduction done. Brian Hannagan?? [He's wondering if Brian Hannagan, my mother's cousin, has a copy. I haven't checked yet.]

It shows Family of Francis Hannagan, b 1825, at top. Clockwise from him, deduced by age: John H b 1844; Brigid H, b 1842; wife Catherine Connor, b 1824; Francis jnr, b 1845; Margaret, b 1848; at centre Charles, b 1867.

If you click on the photo, you'll get a larger version, which may be easier to see. If anyone knows any more about this photo, send me an email.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Hannagan family

A photo of some of the Hannagan family as adults...Charles, Catherine, Albert Powell (probably a fiance of Anne), Rose, Frank, Tess. Front row: Mary, Bridget (their mother), Anne and Dan.

My mother has written that it's Dan on the very right of the picture, though he looks a little older than some of the others. According to my family tree he was only 44 when he died. I don't know a lot about him at all. Presumably he was married, but the family tree doesn't have any record of this at this point.

This other photo of Charles is in a heavy frame and the photo is very faded. However, I'm including it for posterity's sake....

Frank Hannagan

This following three links are to pdfs on relating to the Debt of Honour Register in which the details of where Frank Hannagan is buried in the Tyne Cot Memorial Cemetery in Belgium.

Page 1.

Page 2.

Page 3.

Hannagan family photos

While sorting out something or other recently we came across a photo album in which someone had put some very old family photos. I've been trying to scan them onto the computer this afternoon, but the programme my printer insists on using is not easy to use, and it's taken me a lot longer than I anticipated.

However, here are the first batch:

This is Tess and Frank Hannagan (two of my grandfather's siblings) - Frank was killed at Passchendale. The top of the photo has been torn badly.

This next photo includes some of John and Bridget Hannagan's family:

According to some notes my mother has made on the back, the boys are Frank, Dan and Charles (he's the baby). The girls are Catherine (Kit) and Rose - she thinks.

This next photo came from a newspaper cutting dated 1993 - the For Sale sign on the right has been partly cut off in this scan.

This is the first house Charles and Flora Hannagan owned and lived in. It's still standing, and has been restored to a degree in the last few years. The next photo is 7 Stanley St, which many readers of this blog will remember. It's no longer standing, and was replaced almost 25 years ago by a bland house and an even blander garden.

The last two photos are of Nan (Flora) and Pop - she leaning out the window at the Elgin Rd house (I'm guessing) and he at a picnic.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Two weddings

Rebecca Hannagan, now Dixon, has just let me know that she and Anthony celebrated their marriage on the 2nd January this year.

And Peter Kellet (one of Jane Hannagan's sons) also got married, but that's all I know at this point. Further info to come!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A couple of catch-ups

Max Allen was born on December 21 in Paraparaumu to Marie and Roy Allen, Margaret and Frank Irvine's second daughter, and her husband.

Margaret reports that: Max weighed 8lb 3ozs and is a great sleeper and eater.

Celia and I won a mystery trip that turned out to be to Wellington, and we went there a couple of weekends ago. While we were there we took the train out to Paraparaumu and caught up with my aunt. (I got a free ride, now being the owner of a Gold Card.)

We almost didn't see she as she'd gone out shopping with Frank, one of her son-in-laws (the husband of Margaret). However, just as we were leaving, thinking we'd missed her completely, she came round the corner in the car with Frank, and we went back to the house and spent some time with her, including looking at some old photos of the family. Some were familiar to me from another photo album of the period, but others were totally new.