Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Two Families, One Ship.

Welcome to my first post for 2016! I thought I would start with something I found quite funny. I had a *facepalm* moment the other day, and discovered a fact about my family history I probably should have known a few years ago.

My Great Great Grandfather Walter Thomas Dyer (1843 - 1911) arrived in New South Wales, from England, in 1849 when he was 6 years old. He traveled with his parents Thomas and Grace, and his older siblings on the ship Emigrant, which arrived in Port Jackson (Sydney Harbor) on June 8th, 1849.

Shipping Record of Walter Thomas Dyer and four of his older siblings on the ship Emigrant. His parents are listed on the previous page.
Source: New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists, 1828 - 1896, Ancestry

In 1871, Walter married my Great Great Grandmother Mary Ann Gore (1851 - 1889). Mary was born in 1851 in the Maitland area, 2 years after her parents Henry and Mary arrived in New South Wales...in 1849. 

Can you see where this might be heading?

The other day I was adding sources to Henry and Mary's profiles in my tree on Ancestry. I had another look at their shipping record. Date of Arrival: June 8th, 1849. Ship: Emigrant. Me: Wait. That sounds familiar. THE DYER'S! Double checked the Dyer's shipping record. June 8th, 1849. Emigrant

Shipping Record of Henry & Mary Gore, & eldest child Elizabeth on the ship Emigrant. My 2x Great Grandmother Mary was their second child two years later.
Source: New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists, 1828 - 1896, Ancestry

Yes. The Dyer's and the Gore's arrived on the same ship. I also saw that both families are listed on the same page! The Dyer's at the top. and the Gore's further down the page. That, dear readers, was my face-palming moment. When I first found the Gore's shipping record a couple of years ago, I did not even think to read the other names. 

I started laughing once the initial realization had passed. But seriously, how did I not realize this until now?

Shipping Record of the Emigrant showing both families.
Source: New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists, 1828 - 1896, Ancestry

It does explain though, how my Great Great Grandparents Walter and Mary might have met. Their parents could have known each other from the ship and kept in touch upon arriving in New South Wales. It is possible. The other funny thing is, a few of Walter's older sisters married into a Brown family who also arrived on the Emigrant. 

As today is Trove Tuesday, there could not be a more perfect time to have a search on Trove for any mention of the Emigrant's arrival. I found the following two articles -

SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1849, June 9). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 4.
Retrieved January 19, 2016, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article12906995

HOBART TOWN. (1849, June 9). The Shipping Gazette and Sydney General Trade List (NSW : 1844 - 1860), p. 153. Retrieved January 19, 2016, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article161033595
The Dyer's and the Gore's are the only ancestors I have found that arrived on the same ship. Small world! Or should I say small ship?

Do you have any two (or more?) families in your ancestry that arrived on the same ship? 


  1. Great find. I have not found many of my ancestors immigration records yet.

  2. Sometimes I think my whole life is one big faceplant ;) Yes, I have done this too...gone back and looked at old shipping records and found other ancestors or neighbours on the same ship....it's certainly worth going through the whole shipping list to see if there are any other familiar names...witness to marriages et al.

  3. This is why it's so important to look at our docs from time to time...as our research progresses the "obvious" is suddenly apparent. Have you looked at the proximity of the two families after they arrived in PO Directories or electoral rolls?

  4. Caitlin,

    I want to let you know that your post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at http://janasgenealogyandfamilyhistory.blogspot.com/2016/01/follow-friday-fab-finds-for-january-22.html

    Have a great weekend!