This past week, I have been researching the descendants of my 4x Great Uncle Hugh McKenzie Mackay. His son Angus (1857 NSW - 1929 QLD) had 2 marriages and 16 children. Angus' 3rd child, Janet Mackay, according to the baptism record, was born in New South Wales in 1887 to his first wife Jane. I had a number of leafy green hints for Janet which I had a look at.
This led me to another tree that had Janet listed with two marriages - Richard Daley in 1911 and Harry Walters in 1945. But hang on a minute, I had just read her sister Sarah's obituary on Trove. Sarah had died in 1938 before she was 50, and I was hoping Trove would provide me with some clues as to why. I got more than that though - Sarah's obituary wonderfully listed all her siblings! Her sisters first names AND married names were given.
|Obituary of Sarah Stone, nee Mackay.|
[Source: Mrs. Sarah Stone. (1938, July 12). The Wingham
Chronicle and Manning River Observer
(NSW : 1898 - 1954), p. 2.
Retrieved January 29, 2017,
Can you see Janet's name in the list of Sarah's siblings?
"Janet (Mrs J H Geelan, Elands)."
On the New South Wales Births Deaths and Marriages Index, the only marriage for a Janet Mackay & male Geelan is to a James Samuel Geelan in 1936, Taree (#/.
James passed away in 1947 – there’s an inquest and everything! And yep, his wife Janet is mentioned.
If you are interested, here is a link to an article detailing the inquest - it is very long!
And his obituary...
I found a death on the NSW BDM for a Janet Geelan in 1954, with parents listed as Angus and Jane (#/. I guess it is time to order the death certificate and find out if this is her.
But what about this other tree?
Well, I checked it out and they are not a direct descendant of Janet, but of a sibling of Angus' first wife Jane. I guess this is another case of not believing in other public trees on Ancestry until you have done your own research. I would not want someone else coming along and taking the information from my tree to be 100% correct. We all make mistakes.
So, will this death certificate tell me what I want to know? Is this Janet Geelan the Janet Mackay I am looking for?
Time to play the waiting game.