Saturday, 12 May 2018

William Laws and family arrive in Brisbane and settle at Brookfield

 More information that Helen Butler  supplied in July 2010 in an email to some Laws relatives. I'm publishing it here so all can see it. What we would do without all the work Helen has done over the years?

There was enormous interest by the public in every ship arriving in Brisbane.   So the Captain would always deliver to the Brisbane  Courier a summary of his voyage.  This was  published  in the paper as soon as possible.  Saloon passengers are named, but Steerage passengers are not.  

The Bayswater anchored out in Moreton Bay at noon on Monday, 27 April.  The  government steamer Kate brought out officials to check the ship and the health of the people aboard. That evening, the Kate returned to Brisbane taking Captain Davies too, with his official papers for the government, his summary of the Log of the voyage for the paper, and the long-awaited  mail from England. His story was printed in the Brisbane Courier on Thursday, 30 April, and also in the weekly Queenslander on Saturday, 2 May

So the people of Brisbane knew all about the voyage, the passengers, and even every item of cargo and where each would be  available for purchase.  This list of cargo was also provided by the Captain and published in the paper.  It has not been included now, but it is easily available on line at the National Library of Australia site- This site is well named, as digging in it brings up endless treasures.

However ,the Bayswater did not sail up the river to dock until 14 May, another two weeks -two weeks of expectant waiting for the citizens of Brisbane, and more unbearably for the new arrivals  still out on the water in sight of their new land.

On 14 May 1868, William Laws and family landed in Brisbane from the "Bayswater". William had paid for the passages out. So under the Land Act of 1868 he was entitled to select land for a farm, free of charge but with conditions attached.

On 18 May 1863,  William Laws  obtained 76 acres at Brookfield.  This was Portion 183 Parish of Stanley,County of Mogill, District of East Moreton. It was named also Selection (or Homestead) Number 49. It was classified as Agricultural land.

On 1 May 1868, Land Order No.3584 had been issued to William Laws to the value of 30 Pounds. From this was deducted each year his annual rent of 9 pence per acre,amounting to  2 Pounds 17 Shillings a year, for 5 years. But he did have to pay himself at the start , a Survey Fee of 3 Pounds 16 Shillings,and then at the end a Deed Fee of 1 Pound 5 Shillings.

By 1 May 1873, the conditions of residence and improvement were fulfilled.
On that exact date, William  obtained a statement that this was true from a neighbour, Charles Gregory, and another. The improvements were stated as 12 acres cleared and cultivated, and residence and outhouse built. So now William owned 76 acres of Freehold Land, no more conditions about it .  He could go and live somewhere else. He could rent the farm out.  He could even sell the land.

Statement from C Gregory and W Harley

1.  CHARLES GREGORY , who witnessed  in 1873  that William Laws had fulfilled the conditions to get the freehold on section 183, was stated by me to be his neighbour.  But there is no evidence that this is so, just that it is very likely. Charles Gregory  is the holder of section 185 on the map.  Charles W  Gregory is listed in the Post Office directories as farmer at Brookfield up to1912. The two families grew up together for some years at Brookfield, before Lawses moved away. But they remained in touch it seems.  In 1895, Percy Laws son of William section 183 was best man at the wedding of  Ellen  Gregory, eldest daughter of Charles Gregory , The Grange Brookfield.  Then in 1907 the widower Charles William Gregory married the widow Lillian Langham nee Laws, daughter of William Laws. 

2. LAWS BROOKFIELD FARM .,SECTION 183 on the old land  map, has been cleverly and neatly superimposed on the same scale onto the current Google Earth of the area by Judy Lofthouse.  This shows Peronne Place in the middle of  the Laws block. This would be the logical place for a road or street if you were dividing up a block. 

Friday, 11 May 2018

Lorna Bessie's diary October 22 1919 to January 1 1920

What a delight to find in amongst my Mother's treasures was her mother's diary. It was one of those little diaries with 6 lines to the day and 6 days to the opening. What was more interesting was that it was the time of her honeymoon. Who would have thought that in 1919 they would have a 5 week honeymoon leaving Allora Queensland by train for Sydney and Tasmania.
1st opening of the diary

 From the diary:
Wed. 22/10/1919-Married. Left for Sydney

23/10/1919 Arrived Sydney. Went to Dixon's. got room "Beulah" Paddington St Paddington. First impression of Sydney dirty. 
24/10/1919 Ryde by tram home by ferry up Parramatta River. walk through Gardens and Domain, saw submarines, art gallery. Scenery up river delightful. Lovely day. 
25/10/1919  Shopping(coat) Watson's Bay. Yachting season opened beautiful sight. Picture show "Road through the dark" Mrs Rae's at night. 
26/10/1919 Manly/lovely back by tram to the Spit Milsons Pt. North Sydney. Mrs D's for tea. 
27/10/1919 Taronga Park Zoo. Scenery very nice. Railway Station & Shopping(hat & gloves) 
28/10/1919 Museum, pictures, Gardens & Theatre at night. Nothing special about theatre. 
29/10/1919 Bondi, Botany Bay & La Perouse. Pictures "Civilisation" Manly after tea.
Harbour beautiful by night. 
30/10/1919 Shopping. Station to see Bert & Kitty leave Tempe to Aunt Beck's. ( note 1 Aunt Beck was Lionel's Aunt Lavetta Bentley and I would never had worked out who she was without help from Helen Butler. Bert & Kitty Mitchell-Bert was the best man at the wedding)
31/10/1919 Rested. City in afternoon. Tourist Bureau 
1/11/1919 Shopping(skirt) Dulwich Hill, Petersham cricket. McKerihans for tea. 
2/11/1919 Manly with Mr McKerihan lovely day. Wynyard Park. 
3/11/1919 Rest-Shopping(blouse& veil) Coogee very nice but very cold. Theatre in evening "Going up" nice. 
4/11/1919 Did not go out until afternoon. Booked passage for Tasmania. Meet N McKerihan home early "letters" (for more about N McKerihan see previoius blog 
5/11/1919 Business re Tasmania. dinner arcade, Sydenham in afternoon & for tea.

6/11/1919 Arrived Katoomba afternoon/rain in Sydney) Leura Falls/beautiful scenery-Bridegrooms cave.
Off to Jenolan Caves. Lionel and Bessie in the middle row.
7/11/1919 Katoomba Falls Fern Gully & other places of interest. Echo Point in moonlight all beautiful(Victorians) 
8/11/1919 50 mile drive to Caves through Grand Arch. Viewed Right Imperial & Lucas Caves. Devils Coach House, Carlotta Arch Very beautiful photo. Punctures on way home. Bush fire.
9/11/1919 Wentworth Falls & Valley of Waters in morning. Mt Yorke, Lovett's Leap & Hydra Majestic in the afternoon. 40 mile drive, big climb but lovely scene. 
10/11/1919 Left Katoomba arrived Sydney disappointment all Tasmania  room at Tempe.

11/11/1919 Day at Aunt Beck's after tea walked to Marrickville. Saw Aunt Jessie in hospital rained, Cooks river before breakfast.(  Note 2 Aunt Jessie was another of Lionel's aunts, Jessie Mogler)
Now the diary has suffered the ravages of time( and children) and there is a week missing.
The next entry is
18/11/1919 Up Derwent River to New Norfolk walk in avenue & garden & town/beautiful. Turn-table spin/strawberries hops. 
19/11/1919  Motor trip through Huon district & Browns River. Blow hole visited & enjoyed. Passed Franklin Croady, Huon, Cygnet & Kingston 
20/11/1919 Through Norfolk & Storm Bay to Taranna visited Eagle Hawk Neck, Blow Hole & Devil's Kitchen, Brake drive to Port Arthur/Carnarvon) 
21/11/1919 Convict ruins before breakfast. Brake drive to boat. walk after tea up town shopping. souvenirs. 
22/11/1919 Mount Nelson telescope Brake drive through Domain, Derwent Park & Springvale. Boat at night. 

One of the trips in a brake. Bessie is standing at the end of the middle row with Lionel seated in the middle beside her.  Pity about the horse losing its head.
23/11/1919 By train(3 hours) to National Park & Russell Falls beautiful Victoria Place after tea. 
24/11/1919 Museum & Art Gallery Tram to Sandy Bay beach 
25/11/2009 Changed house. Private zoo  Bellerive Beach 
26/11/1919 Transport By tram to Cascades & walk to C. huts. Picnic in bush, lovely day. 
27/11/1919 Met Arthur Hay. Brake drive to Collin's Vale beautiful scenery. Nice tea. 
28/11/1919 Sewed. Lye sick. Wrote letters. 
29/11/1919 Walked about town & Franklin Square. Left Hobart in "Manuka" 
30/11/1919 Sick in cabin 
1/12/1919 Sick in cabin 
2/12/1919 Arrived Sydney 9am. Penshurst, Brighton Le Sands in the afternoon. Paddle, Music at night. 
3/12/1919 Washing. Organ recital  cards at night. 
4/12/1919 "Ironing" Photo, Shopping(shoes) Tempe.  Music 
5/12/1919 Left Sydney from Penshurst. 
6/12/1919 Nice journey. M Deegan at Stanthorpe. Home. 
7/12/1919 Church at 8am "Glenvale" in afternoon & for tea. lovely day. 
8/12/1919 Walk around creek. Rang Lily up.(  Note 3 Lionel's sister) 
9/12/1919 By train to Warwick. Saw House (  Note 4 now looking for a house for the newly weds) 
10/12/1919 Drove to "Glenvale" ( Note 5 Bessie's parents farm near Allora) 
11/12/1919 At "Glenvale"
12/12/1919 At "Glenvale" 
13/12/1919 Drove to Warwick. Took house. 
14/12/1919 Drove to Allora. Church at 7:30pm 
15/12/1919 Left for Brisbane. Arrived Adelaide House. 
16/12/1919 Uncle Percy shopping furniture at Hixcos. Afternoon & night with Lily Pictures.( Note 6 Uncle Percy Murray Laws) 
17/12/1919 Shopping at Beirnes Lily. Afternoon & night at Uncle Percy's. Storm 
18/12/1919 Left Brisbane. Arrived home Allora 
19/12/1919 quiet day with Lye's mother.( Note 7. Lionel was often called Lye in the family)
20/12/1919 Allora Street 
21/12/1919 Church 8am visited Nellie. Motored out to "Glenvale" 
22/12/1919 Lovely day at Glenvale 
23/12/1919  Quiet day at Allora. up street at night. 
24/12/1919 Another quiet day, Xmas eve. Up town at night. 
25/12/1919 Xmas day. Motored to Glenvale 
26/12/1919 Drove to Warwick. Unpacked furniture. 
27/12/1919 Quiet day at Glenvale 
28/12/1919 Quiet day at Glenvale 
29/12/1919 Drove to Warwick to our new home. Bert & Kitty at night. ( Note 8 Bert & Kitty Mitchell )
30/12/1919 Left for Goondiwindi arrived here 12:30pm 
31/12/1919 Walked all around "Goondi" around river & over bridge. Storm in evening. 
1/1/1920 New Year's Day. Left "Goondi" for Inglewood. Arrived Ingelwood. Walked to bridge & around town after tea. (Storm)

A New Year and a new life together.( and a new diary that either wasn't written or didn't stand the ravages of time.)
Her diary  had only small spaces for her to write in but we get  the message that they were out exploring and  meeting family and friends. What a lovely start to their new life together. My Mother said her father believed every newly married couple should have a honeymoon so her wedding present to us was a lovely honeymoon to Heron Island.

Notes 1 to 8 added by Judy Lofthouse)

Thursday, 10 May 2018

Lorna Bessie's marriage to Lionel Laws 1919

My grand father Lionel Laws married Bessie Holmes in October 1919. Unfortunatley we do not have any photographs from the wedding but Trove as usual comes to the rescue with a writeup about the wedding.

Darling Downs Gazette (Qld. : 1881 - 1922), Tuesday 4 November 1919, page 3

A very pretty wedding took place on Wednesday, the 22nd October, at St. David's Church of England, Allora, when Miss Bessie Holmes; eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Holmes, was married to Mr. Lionel Laws, eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. L. E. Laws, Allora. Rev. J. Elliott conducted the ceremony. The bride, who entered the church on the arm of her father, and who subsequently gave her away, was daintily attired in a gown of cream crepe de chine and georgette; she also wore an embroidered tulle veil arranged in mob cap fashion with wreath of orange blossoms; she also carried a beautiful bouquet of white roses and asparagus fern. She was attended by two bridesmaids, the Misses Lynda Holmes (sister of the bride) and Jessie Laws (sister of the bridegroom), both wearing dresses of kobe silk and ninon with Leghorn hats to match. Mr. H. Mitchell, of Ipswich, acted as bestman, while Mr. V. Laws acted as groomsman. The church was beautifully decorated for the purpose by the bride's best girl friends, and at the conclusion of the service, Miss Emma Smith sang '0 Perfect Love.' After the ceremony Mr. and Mrs. J. Holmes held a reception at the Shire Hall when about sixty guests sat down to the wedding breakfast, the usual toasts being honoured. Later in the day the happy couple motored to Hendon where they caught the mail train en route for Sydney and Tasmania where they intend spending the honeymoon. The bride travelled in a dress of wedgwood blue taffeta, hat and mastic of vieux rose. (1)

This seems like an ordinary wedding write up but what made it special for me was the "veil arranged in a mob cap fashion" I had been given this "thing of tulle" that I couldn't work out what it was. However, after reading this description it was the mob cap style veil I think.  

 Notice the holes for threading ribbon along each long edge and the gathering in the middle that suggest to me it was the cap. What do you think? 
The other interesting  item in the write up was that they motored to Hendon to catch the mail train en route for Sydney and Tasmania.  Bessie kept a diary for the honeymoon and that makes interesting reading but more of that another day.
Another treasure that came to light was Lionel's hand written version of his speech at the wedding.

Here it is transcribed.

Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen
It is with a deep sense of pride that I rise to thank you all on behalf of my future wife and myself for the many kind things you have said about us and also for the many & useful presents. I can assure Ladies and Gentlemen that they will always be remembered among our treasures and they will remind us of this very pleasant evening & of you all as our many friends.  Bess & I are very thankful of the honour you have done us. I am sure Ladies  & Gentlemen we will never forget you.
Should any of you at any time be within reach of our home we will only ( be) too pleased to welcome you & may be able to help us use some of your gifts.

For your kind wishes we also thank you from the bottom of our hearts & I hope you will not gauge the depth of our thoughtfulness by the scarcity of my words. I can no more than that. I again thank you very sincerely.
Although we have no photo from the wedding between the veil and the speech we have treasures of their special day for us to cherish .


Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Frank Charles Laws 1876-1955

This newsletter is published with kind permission of Ann Doughty and Helen Butler

FAMILY   NEWSLETTER                                                OCTOBER  1988

FLASHBACK   •••••••••   The   youngest   child   of   William  and   Sarah Laws   was   Frank  Charles.
He   was   born   28th   April    1876,   most   likely   while   the family was   still   at   Brookfield,   He   would have grown   up   at Kangaroo   Point   and   probably went to the  Normal   School.   He served  his  time in  grocery and hardware   (as apprentice )  and for  a   large  part  of  his  working life  he  worked at   Barry &  Roberts  in Brisbane.   He   lived all his life in the Brisbane area.

He   married Margaret   Robb,    known    to all the family   as   Aunty   Maggie.   She   was   very   proud   of her Scots   ancestry.   She   was  a  lively   talkative,  and cheerful  character, while Uncle Frank was quieter  and more  serious  in manner.   They  were  a  very  devoted  couple  all  their  lives, but  they  had no  children. Aunty   Maggie’s brother  lived  with  them  for  some   years.

In 1914 -15 they lived in Edith St, Wynnum.   Their nephew Frank Goodall Laws visited them there when as a boy he had a holiday in Brisbane with the Langhams.   They probably lived at Wynnum  until  about 1921,  when  they  were  at 39 Mornington  St, Red  Hill.  Here they lived all the rest of their   lives.

Olive  Wood  remembers  when her  family  used to visit  them  there,  going  Saturday  evenings  to play cards.   She also remembers their pet dog,   which they both loved.

In  the Depression   about    1930,    Frank  was  put  off  at  Barry  & Roberts  when  staff  had to be reduced.  He  was  then about  54  years  old  and   would  have  been  working  there  close  on  40  years. However, length of service was not considered. Men with no children  dependants  were the ones put  off   first.   He  was,  however,  presented  with an  engraved gold  watch, and  this he   wore  proudly for  the rest  of   his   life.   There  was  no  superannuation,   and relief  payment  was only   one pound per  week,  so  being "put  off"   was  a real hardship.   Frank never again managed to get a job.

In  the  1940's,    his  nephew  Frank  moved  to live  in Brisbane, and he  and  his  family  often  used to  visit  Uncle  Frank  and Aunty  Maggie during  the week-ends.  Uncle  Frank  used to smoke  a pipe a  great  deal  of  the time  and  had his  little  vegetable  garden,   even though the site  was  very steep  and difficult.   Aunty Maggie did excellent fancy work and crochet.      She was ‘not a well woman'   for  many years,   as  she  had an irregular  heart.  The children used to enjoy the visit, for these two were  real characters, most kindly and entertaining too.  There  were  always  lots of  cookies  and they  would  all  play  bobs  and  other  games.  Then there was the mysterious close room  of treasures, which  Aunty called "Bluebeard’s Room".

Frank Laws died   in 1955,   and Maggie the following year. The remains of both these dear kindly   people are at Mt   Thompson Cemetery.
*              *             *
Maggie & Frank Laws
Frank & Maggie Laws

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Ernest Albert Laws 1864-1947

This is reproduced with kind permission of Ann Doughty and Helen Butler from a family newsletter in August 1987.


AUGUST  1987

This month  we  learn  of the fourth  child  of William &   Sarah Laws, Ernest Albert and his children. (Thank you Helen, for  all your research information)
Ernest Albert Laws was born in England and was four years old when the family emigrated. He went to the Brookfield School, where his teacher for  two years  was  Mr. George Francis.  The Francis family had emigrated in 1872 on "The Light Brigade". A baby had been born on the voyage out.  She was Annie Brigadia Francis,  her second  name being derived  from the  ship's  name as  the  captain  insisted  that  this  custom  be followed.
When Mr.  Francis was transferred from Brookfield  in  1874,  Annie was only two years  old and Ernie  Laws was  ten.  It is said that the two families knew each other well  then, and that Ernie  had often nursed Annie as a baby. Twenty  years later, on 24th March 1894,  these two were married at  Capalaba.
E.A.Laws worked at first with a firm of auctioneers and commission agents named Dickson's, who were then the leading auctioneers in Brisbane.
Ernie became  a competent  public  auctioneer, and later  started a business of  his  own.  It seems from the Post Office  Directories  that  for  many  years from  1901  Ernie's  Auctioneer's Office   shared premises at 192  Queen St  with his  brother Percy's Signwriting business.
The Ernie Laws '  lived at Graham  St  South Brisbane  until 1901, when they moved  and lived  for  some  years  at Prospect Terrace,  Highgate  Hill.  Later they moved  to Water  St, Carlton  St and Fraser  Terrace, all at  Highgate Hill.
In  his  later  working  years, Ernie Laws was accountant  with  F. W. Nissen & Co. Jewellers,  in  Brisbane.  He remained here until he retired.
Ernie Laws is said to have been a dapper city chap, with his gold watch chain and his  walking  stick,  and often his  bowler hat.  At the same time, he was  a very  keen gardener, and was photographed  watering his  vegetable  garden.  He died  at  84  years  in  1947.

Ernie watering his vegetable patch aged 82
 His wife Annie Brigadia  died 20 years  later, when she was  95 years  old. She was  a member  of St Andrews  Church  of England South Brisbane ,  75 years .
Of their  three  children,  their second, Evelyn  died in  infancy. Vivien  attended  St  Andrews  private  school at  Sth Brisbane,  and then Holy Trinity Woolloongabba, where she continued as a teacher.  She then joined the firm of Edwards Dunlop,  where she  was  promoted  to  manager  of the Country  Orders  section .  Then for  some  years  she worked for  Vogue in  their Ladies  Fashion  shop  in  the  City.  From  here  she  became  their  travelling salesman,  covering the whole of Queensland,  carrying  a large  range of  stock
and having an assistant  travelling  with  her. She married Wal Foster, a watchmaker in 1928. They had no family. After her  father's death,  her mother  lived  with Vivie  and Wal  at  their  home in  Pelham  St, Coorparoo .  Vivie died in 1976, four years  after  Wal  Foster.

Eric Laws attended the Normal  School and  then the  Brisbane  Grammar School at  the  same  time as Harry  Roberts,  who was a cousin  of  his  Percy Laws cousins and later a renowned  Headmaster.
Eric had a distinguished  career  in  the  Public  Service .  In  1916  he  joined  the Taxation  Office  as clerk .  In  1924 he  transferred  to Dept  of Labour and served in  Rockhampton,  Bundaberg, Innisfail  and Townsville ,  acting as Labour  Agent  and Industrial  Inspector.                     
He returned to Brisbane in 1940, and in 1941 he transferred  to  the Commonwealth  Dept  of Labour  & National  Service  and established  the National Employment  Office  in  Brisbane.  The following year  he was  appointed Asst Deputy  Director-General  of Manpower  in  Queensland, and held this  important· position  through the war years .  After the war, he remained with the same Commonwealth  Department,  becoming  Deputy  Director of  Employment  for Queensland. In this position he established and organized the Commonwealth Employment Service. 
 In  1952,  Eric  Laws became Queensland  Regional  Director  of Department of  Labour  and  National  Service,  a  post  he  held  until  he  retired  in  1961.
Eric Laws married May Owens and they  lived  happily  until   she died in her  fifties. There were no children.
Later, he married Margaret (Peg) Shaw and they lived  for many years at  Victoria  Point.  Mrs Peg Laws still lives here in Cartwright St. (in 1987 ) (1)
Eric had a remarkable record of community involvement. He  joined  Rotary in  Townsville.  In  the  Cleveland Branch he served as President,  and was so valuable  a part  of the  club  he became  known  as  "Mr Rotary".  As well, he served on the local Ambulance Committee, the Cancer Fund Society  and the church  council.  With his wide experience of public affairs, he was of great assistance to these organizations.  Besides this, he was always ready to help any individual who  came  to him. He was  highly  revered in  the  community.

Unfortunately,  only  three  weeks after  the death  of his  mother, Eric  Laws  died suddenly, aged  66   years .

Percy b 1873 Brisbane, Ernie b 1864 Hampshire England, Frank b 1875 Brisbane, Lionel b 1868 at sea.

 Eldest  son William Camper  Laws was born in  1859 and remained in  England with his  Goodall grandparents. (2)

This  photo was taken  on 19th  Dec. 1940 when some  of the family  gathered  to farewell  Jack Laws  at Redbank Army Camp,  just  before he left  for  overseas service  with 2nd  15t h Battalion.   Jack’s brother  Frank took the photo.

(1) Note added by Judy