In keeping with the ANZAC theme here is some of the music my grandmother, Elsie Linda Boyd (nee McKnight) had. She played the piano and the organ beautifully. When she was young she would play the music for the silent movies at the picture theatre. Wherever she lived she played the organ at the church, this included when the family lived in Japan, Maldon, a Nissan hut in South Croydon and in houses in the North Bayswater area.
For Anzac day I have found relatives, some close, some distant, who served in the Boer War and World War 1. They came from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, America and England. Where possible I have included a photo of them. If you have a photo of anyone here I’d love a copy. Does anyone have their medals? Again I’d love a photo of them. If anyone knows of other family members who served in the Boer War or WW1 please let me know. A few of these men will feature in more detail in future blogs. I intend to create one later for all those who served in WW11 so any service files, photos or information would be gratefully received.
In March I spent a week in Auckland, New Zealand following in the footsteps of my 3 x great grandparents Arthur Wellesley Hood and Janet Fraser.
Arthur was baptized in St Andrews on the Green Episcopalian church, Glasgow on October 5, 1817. He was the son of John Hood, a merchant and his wife Mary Ann Stewart. John was a leather tanner, I believe in business with his brother William at Ladyburn in Greenock. Janet was the daughter of James Frazer, supposedly a mill owner and his wife, maybe Mary. They left Scotland on board the Jane Gifford in 1842.
Last week I visited Auckland to attend the 150th anniversary of Pollok settlement on the Awhitu peninsular to the south-west of Auckland. My 3 x great uncle Robert Scouler with his second wife, Mary McWatt and their children travelled to Auckland on board the Ganges in 1863. Luckily an account of their journey survives that was written by on the of the cabin passengers, David Buchanan. The Scoulers were in the steerage cabin.
I travelled up to Sydney with my mother to visit her sister who is not very well. On the way we spent a night in Canberra and visited the Mapping our World: Terra Incognita to Australia exhibition at the National Library. It’s well worth visiting if you can get to Canberra. It tracks the discovery of Australia by the Europeans through maps. Alongside the maps there are globes and scientific instruments, it’s amazing how they were able to create such beautiful and detailed maps. The map by Fra Mauro is not to be missed. There were maps from the early explorers, names I remembered from history lessons.
A few months ago while searching the Australian newspapers online, Trove, I came across an article in the Kyneton Guardian of 11 January 1917 mentioning the cousin of Cr. John McKnight (known as Johnny to family) and Mrs. M Moore (formerly Margaret Gregg McKnight) and thus nephew of Johnny and Margaret’s mother Sarah Jane Dunlop. Sarah Jane Dunlop married Alexander McKnight in Raphoe, Co Donegal, Ireland on 15 January 1857. They are my great great grandparents. For those of you who are family, they were Elsie McKnight’s grandparents.
Captain J G Dunlop was said to be serving in British East Africa but that his commission was awaiting him in Europe with the Royal Irish Rifles. He had served in the Boer war and in the operations in German South West Africa. He had taken part in four campaigns and was hoping to complete his fifth. It mentioned that he had been a captain under Major Maritz who had defected to the Germans but J G Dunlop had fortunately been sent by headquarters to military college and had escaped being a prisoner of war.