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Memories from Bertha's family
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I would would like to thank all the Goldsmiths for their cooperation and tell them how exciting it is finding them and building up our family story. Thalia
Bertha Goldsmith married Harry Robinson in Westminster both aged 16 - the couple had eleven children and sailed for Australia in December 1949
Bertha Mary Ann & Gertrude Goldsmith
It is a delight to be in touch!!
Gertrude Mary Goldsmith was my Aunt and I was born at Ponsonby Place, Westminster, the seventh of eleven. We cannot add anything more to your knowledge of Gertrude, other than confirming that she was a strict Vegetarian and, when she visited us once, supposedly for three weeks, but stayed for two months, we went vegetarian too! (Just for the duration of her stay!) This was before the war when I was about ten, so around 1936.
Of course, I can easily dispel any "mystery" about Bertha Violet Goldsmith, my Mother! She married Henry Robinson (always called "Harry") in 1911 and they brought up their eleven children to healthy adult life, quite an achievement at the time. As it happens, my husband and I will drive across Sydney tomorrow (29 Feb 08) to Waterfall for the Seventieth Birthday Party of Roland, the youngest of that family. Sadly there are only five of us left, two in England and three in New South Wales. We will look up our photographs and send you copies of anything that we think will interest you, When we did our searching, we had to rely upon very limited family memories, as we failed to ask questions when our parents were alive. We used the resources of the Mormons , involving many hours of trawling through fiche and, occasionally, films at a suburb some distance from us. Finding the date of an event, marriage, birth or death, meant that we wrote to the UK Authorities for the appropriate Certificates which would provide us with more data on which to base our searches. You will understand that there were no helpful websites, even if we had been equipped to seek them out.
Janice, there are so many things I could talk about, but it might be more sensible to refer you to my Cousin Charles Goldsmith, Genealogist, a long time resident of Westminster, and the person who compiled the full family history of the Goldsmiths.
Of course, we indulged in a lot of nostalgia as we went through our old photographs for you, after all we have been married for 57 years !! Good luck! Pam & Jim
Bertha with Clara Henry and Charles
ROBINSON HISTORY - from Pamela
Henry Robinson married Fanny Edith Jane Littlejohn at St. Jude's Church of England, North Chelsea. The Littlejohn's were a London family, of Lamplighters and relatively easy to trace, but we have not been able to establish Henry's antecedents, despite a huge amount of digging. By the Census of 1891 they were living in Cumberland Road, Pimlico, where Henry, called Harry, was born.The eldest child, Fanny Edith, married into the Hunt family of Upper Wyckam: they were Builders and planned to move to New Zealand to join a family member in business there. However, they stopped and settled in Melbourne, Australia, and Edith and John Hunt lived there until John moved to Sydney as a Quantity Surveyor on the Harbour Bridge
Edith strongly encouraged her English family to migrate and her parents, Henry and Fanny Edith Jane, sailed in 1912, bringing with them their Single children, Eleanor, Rose, Eliza, William and John.The younger Henry and his new Bride, Bertha Violet, nee Goldsmith, stayed in London, at first in Westminster, then Downham, Kent, and finally in Lee. Edith, in Sydney, continued to urge her brother, Henry, to migrate and, finally, in December 1949, Henry & Bertha sailed with their single children - Pamela, Thora, Edna and Roland. Thora returned to England, married her sweetheart Clive. One of the married children, Bertha IRENE Deverson, came out with her husband and children in 1952
Living at Downham, in Kent, I only saw Grandpa Charles when we visited Ponsonby Place and, of course, we saw uncle Tom, Uncle Charles, cousins Nell & Charles, and Ken, Stan, Joyce & Margaret. Years later, in 1979 and on later trips, we stopped off in Seattle to see Lilian, (Tom's Widow), Joyce & Margaret, and we are still in touch with Margaret regularly.
Folkestone c 1932
Bertha and Harry Robinson, Charles Leonard Goldsmith
Agnes Ellen (Nell) and Charles George Goldsmith
Below with (Rachel) Nora Lockie
We have thoroughly enjoyed our flow of emails and our phone chat. You will understand that we have not done any Family History research for about 10 years . Our memory is far from perfect; worse still some of our records have deteriorated from being kept in plastic sheets in our volumes. We went by train to Melbourne, 12 hours, to search the Victorian archives for the passenger lists. You can believe we were delighted when we found the entry!
Janice, we seek your help in what we call " The Hunt for Henry" of course we mean the first Henry who married Edith Jane Littlejohn in North Chelsea in 1879. The church no longer exists.
Pam and Jim
Marriage Certificate ( apologies poor copy )
A short history of the Littlejohns on PDF
kindly donated to the site by Stephen Littlejohn May 2008
The Littlejohns were Lamplighters
My tea is nearly ready and the sun has left the sky;
It's time to take the window to see Leerie going by;
For every night at teatime and before you take your seat,
With lantern and with ladder he comes posting up the street.
Now Tom would be a driver and Maria go to sea,
And my papa's a banker and as rich as he can be;
But I, when I am stronger and can choose what I'm to do,
O Leerie, I'll go round at night and light the lamps with you!
For we are very lucky, with a lamp before the door,
And Leerie stops to light it as he lights so many more;
And O! before you hurry by with ladder and with light,
O Leerie, see a little child and nod to him tonight!
Robert Louis Stevenson
They departed on 22.July 1912 from London to Melbourne on the SS Makarini - Captain Hugh Hollis - 10,624 tons, 13 knots. G.D.Tyser & Co, London. Accommodation for 750- steerage class passengers. Built by Workman, Clark & Co, Belfast, she was launched on 3rd Feb.1912. In 1914 Tyser's was taken over by the Commonwealth & Dominion Line (Port Line) and she was renamed SS Port Nicholson. Mined and sunk 15 miles West of Dunkirk 15 January1917
Fanny and Henry had 15 children between 1884 and 1904 , some of the children they left behind - they took with them, Eliza 19, Eleanor, William, Rose and John - Fanny must have been somewhat exhausted ! Janice
Passenger List SS Makarini 1912
Bertha & family prior to sailing for Australia 1949
Bertha centre with Harry - Irene Pamela and Edna on left of photo
Thora Harry's right on photo - Roland her youngest son seated with sunglasses
Bertha sailed on the 'Chitral'
Details and image porvided by Michael Barclay with thanks
built by Alexander Stephen & Sons Glasgow,
Yard No 504
Engines by Shipbuilders
Last Name: CHITRAL
Port of Registry: Glasgow
Propulsion: Two four cylinder quadruple expansion steam engines, 13000 ihp, twin screws, 16 knots
Launched: Tuesday, 27/01/1925
Ship Type: Passenger Liner
Ship's Role: UK/Australia service
Tonnage: 15248 gross; 8756 net; 10300 dwt
Length: 547ft 0in
Breadth: 70ft 4in
Draught: 30ft 3in
Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company London
Status: Arrived for Scrapping - 15/04/1953
'We had been sponsored by Dad's sister, Fanny Edith Hunt, nee Robinson of
101 Northwood Road, Northwood, Sydney.
When we arrived in Melbourne we were held up by a wharfies strike and so we were able to enjoy two weeks at Lower Ferntree Gully with uncle Bill ( Dad's brother ) and his second wife Laura and to visit Aunty Rose and Uncle Henry Kerly. We spent Christmas on the ship.
Finally we arrived in Sydney and were met by Aunt Edith, cousin Frank and other members of the family and given a great welcome. Another sister of Dad's, Aunty Eleanor (Nell) and cousin Marcia were also there.' Pamela
Chitral Passenger list 23.11.1949
Bertha and Harry were quite courageous, they were both 55 when they left for Australia and still had young children. On arrival they stayed with Edith who had a beatuiful house in Northwood which is a very good area.
The address which Newton sent in from the back of a photograph was the correct one -
9th Avenue Loftus Sutherland NSW.
It was Bertha and Harry's first home. An old wooden structure which they renovated with verandas, in 10 - 12 acres of land in the bush. There were no roads, just dirt and mud, but a railway line fairly nearby. Pamela worked in Town and had to walk through the bush to catch the train to work wearing rubber boots carrying her shoes in a bag which she changed into on the train. Her father Harry had a horse and trap for travelling around, shopping in town etc. This was in the 1950's. It was some years before the family had a car and the roads were tarmaced. When the children grew up and left home they sold up to developers and now the area is covered with housing.
Loftus was named after Lord Augustus William Frederick Spencer Loftus, governor of New South Wales between 1878 and 1885. The Illawarra railway line to Sutherland was completed in 1885. The next station south was Loftus Junction, which opened on the 9th March 1886. The name was changed to Loftus ten years later and in 1979 the station moved to the present site. Loftus is a residential suburb with a bushland atmosphere, adjacent to the Royal National Park that flanks Sydney's south eastern boundary. The western border is formed by Loftus and Fahy Creeks. Prince Edward Park and Woronora Cemetery form the northern border.
Bertha and Harry at Pamela's wedding
From Pamela's collection
Charles George and Nell, children of Charles Leonard and Nora Goldsmith
photo c 1934 taken in Lee Green SE12
Joyce and Aunty Lily, widow of Thomas Goldsmith, Bertha and Gertrude's brother
Seattle USA 1996
Robinson Family Tree
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