Generations of Genes Phyllis Jeans 20 ISBN 0 473 03868 4

Generations of Genes Copyright © Phyllis Jeans 2000
All rights reserved ISBN 0 473 03868 4
PEMM Publishing Cambridge, New Zealand

[p20] [The Jeans Line]

Ellen told her daughters she had only been to school for two days. Why this should have been so is not known. Ellen was the youngest child of the family. Chores should not have been too demanding but distance between school and home may have been a problem.

By 1871 (Census returns) Ellen was working as a kitchenmaid for a farming couple in South Ferriby, north-west of Ulceby. She was nineteen years old and had probably been earning her living for a number of years. Ellen also told her daughters her first situation saw her rewarded with a wage of two- pence a week. How old she was at the time is not known but a working life began early for the children of the poor. At one time Ellen worked for a woman whose husband was a bridge-builder, and she [Ellen] travelled about with the family. The untimely death of her employer’s husband ended that situation. Once, when Ellen returned home to her family with trinkets and other oddments given to her by an employer, her parents expressed their disapproval. These gifts were considered ‘above her station’ and her parents thought she should not have them.

On 5 May 1875, Ellen Wilkinson and Charles Marris married in the Primitive Methodist church, Barrow-upon-Humber. Ellen’s brother William Wilkinson and her married sister Sarah Parker were the two witnesses. Reacting to parental disapproval of the marriage, Ellen determined ‘to go as far from home as possible’. New Zealand’s immigration policy of the time gave her the chance to do so. In Lincolnshire an active recruitment scheme had been underway for some time. Meetings held in various Lincolnshire villages, including Ulceby, found willing listeners where there was dissatisfaction regarding wages, conditions, and lack of prospects in the agricultural field.

When the Halcione sailed from London on 27 May 1875 Ellen, Charles and baby Alice were aboard, bound for distant New Zealand. Their passage cost £38-15s. Most of the migrants were English, many from Lincolnshire but there were also twenty-four Swiss migrants bound for Patea. Altogether there were two hundred and thirty-five adults, one hundred and five children, and fifteen infants. With so many passengers, and the length of the journey, vast amounts of stores were needed. Migrant ships had to comply with a recognized dietary scale, and an allowance sufficient for one hundred and fifty days was necessary for a ship sailing to New Zealand. This particular voyage took one hundred and four days. For a time before the ship sailed there would have been great activity as the barrels, casks, chests, boxes, tins and bags of a basic range of food were stowed on board. These included thousands of pounds of meat (beef, pork and mutton) and nearly three thousand pounds of butter (Irish seconds). Other supplies included flour, oatmeal and rice in large quantities, carrots and onions, potatoes (both fresh and preserved) chests of tea and coffee (roasted in the bean) raw sugar, molasses, twenty-six wickered stone jars of pickles, and a large quantity of Best Mustard. Seventy-eight gallons of lime-juice would guard against vitamin deficiency through lack of fresh fruit and vegetables. There were over two thousand eggs, buttered and packed in salt. A special listing of infants’ stores contained sago, arrowroot, and seventeen tins of white biscuits. Medical comforts ‘to be packed in separate cases, legibly marked’ included extra foods such as rice, sago, tapioca, arrowroot, beef-tea and scotch and chicken broth. There was also sherry, approved stout, gin and brandy. Eight tins of yellow soap and four air-tight casks of quicklime would help keep the quarters clean. A large quantity of candles in various sizes ‘as prepared and packed for the Emigrants Commissioner’s ships’ was also noted. As much as possible good preparations were made for the long journey. Papers detailing the above supplies are held by National Archives, Wellington.

No stories of Ellen’s experiences of the three month journey are known to this generation. But there are accounts to be read, and some experiences would have been common to all, such as sea-sickness, tedious days when the voyage seemed interminable, the monotony of a restricted diet, and the inevitable stresses of shipboard living. Few, if any, would have avoided these problems. A cabin passenger, Emily Summerhays, and Surgeon Percy Lee, have both left accounts of the voyage. Before the ship left the East India Docks, Blackwell, London, in late May, the emigrants were mustered and inspected and amid much confusion boarded the ship. Emily noted it was dark by the time all were settled in. The next day, a child showed symptoms of Rubiola (measles). The child and his family were returned to shore. However, this action was too late to prevent the disease from spreading. Over the next six weeks thirty-eight passengers, mostly children, were treated for measles. Ellen’s daughter, Alice Marris was one of those patients. After four days treatment she was discharged from the ship’s hospital. There seems little doubt she was very frail, and on 29 June she died of marasmus, a wasting disease. Alice was the first of eight children to die on the Halcione. Of this first death, Emily Summerhays wrote ‘child died in the night buried 3 pm’. Later, on July 11 after yet another death, she recalled that first sea-burial. ‘Another child died, the poor mothers are in a dreadful way, it is so hard to see them buried at sea. The first child we buried floated for a long time’. Emily noted all on board usually attended the funeral services, and ‘the ship is very quiet for awhile after’.

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Generations of Genes Phyllis Jeans 19 ISBN 0 473 03868 4

Generations of Genes Copyright © Phyllis Jeans 2000
All rights reserved ISBN 0 473 03868 4
PEMM Publishing Cambridge, New Zealand

[p19] [The Jeans Line]

When possible, Saturday was to be kept free to ‘clean up arms, accoutrements and clothes and to replace the fern in the tents, etc.’. A general parade was to be held on Wednesday afternoons when the men were to ‘turn out with arms and accoutrements Haversacks etc., and the Blanket well rolled over the left shoulder in Marching Order. When the weather permits the parade will not be dismissed without one hours drill’.

Charles Jeans, Reg. No. 360, Coy 4 was charged with ‘committing a nuisance within the boundaries of Camp at Oakura 13 May 1865’. This was a first offence and he was given a caution. A memo from the Militia Office of 23 September 1867 stated Private Jeans (in charge) and three others were to be in attendance at the Blockhouse (Okato) during the month of October. Pte. Jeans was to take charge of the Government property, send a receipt to the Militia Office and keep a copy for himself. The four men were instructed to sleep in the Blockhouse at night and two were to be constantly in the Redoubt all day on the look-out.

In 1867 as a private in the Military Settlers, Charles received a grant of ‘section 19, 1 acre more or less in the Okato township and 52 acres 3 rds. of rural land, allotment 78, Cape Survey District’. Okato, about 18 miles from New Plymouth consisted of some 11,650 acres settled in this way. Higher ranking soldiers were granted larger acreages. When the sections were first worked an allowance was still being paid. Charles Jeans claimed an allowance for six months in 1869. In time this monetary help ceased and the holders of Government grants experienced difficulties. Some men sold their sections cheaply, some returned to Australia and some went seeking gold in the South Island. Charles was one of those who stayed. Times were still troubled. The Taranaki Government Gazette noted no rates were collected for 1869-70 in the Okato Road District ‘on account of native disturbances’. The Taranaki Almanac of 1877 listed Charles as one of the auditors for the Okato (16th) district. The rate was twopence in the pound of rateable value. Early electoral rolls gave his occupation as farmer and for some ten years or so he operated the first butcher shop in Okato. Freeholders of New Zealand (published 1882) recorded him as owning 56 acres in the country, valued at one hundred and eight pounds. Charles bought and sold some properties in the 1870s and details of these dealings may be seen in documents held in the New Plymouth office of Land Information, New Zealand.

While writing these stories of earlier generations the names used are formal but it is difficult for this to be otherwise. Unless the name used by family and friends is known, we are limited to baptismal names and those appearing on official documents. Many would have answered to less formal names in their day-to-day living. A reference to settlers in Okato referred to Charlie Jeans; some at least knew him as such.

Ellen Wilkinson, youngest child of James Wilkinson and Alice Burton was born 14 September 1852 in Ulceby, Lincolnshire, England. Registered by Alice (who signed with a cross) on 6 October, Ellen was baptised on 17 October in the ancient parish church. Ulceby is a pleasant village in North Lincolnshire. At the time of the 1861 census the Wilkinson family was living at Mill End where James was working as a shepherd. Ellen was then eight years old. Although there was a free school in Ulceby

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Generations of Genes Phyllis Jeans 18 ISBN 0 473 03868 4

Generations of Genes Copyright © Phyllis Jeans 2000
All rights reserved ISBN 0 473 03868 4
PEMM Publishing Cambridge, New Zealand

[p18] [The Jeans Line]

In 1855 the Caesar was in the Baltic during the Crimean war to support Turkey in a conflict with Russia. The war ended in 1856. In 1857 Charles appeared on the Victory muster ‘for victuals only’. He was transferred to the Charlotte from where he was discharged in May of that year ‘to shore by request’. It would seem the Navy was reducing personnel as a number of men were making the same request. The conduct of Charles and one other man was noted as ‘very good’, four others earned ‘good’ and one ‘fair’. After this, Charles’ movements are again unknown until the end of 1863. Family tradition tells the story of him jumping ship from a man-of-war somewhere off the coast of Australia. The story goes that conditions aboard the ship caused alarm and discontent and he is reputed to have swum some distance to the shore. The exact ship has not been identified; a number were in the Pacific during the Maori Wars.

On 3 December 1863 the ship Choice arrived in New Zealand with military settlers from Melbourne. Charles Jeans was among them. On 6 December he enlisted in the Otago Contingent of the Taranaki Military Settlers. These men were to ‘combine the profession of arms and agriculture’. For this, they were to be paid (two-and-sixpence per day for privates) and supplied with rations until they had ‘subdued the enemy around themselves and firmly established themselves’. Three years after enrollment, having fulfilled the various conditions laid down (gazetted in 1863) each armed settler was to be rewarded with a Crown Grant of a town section and a country allotment. From then they would be liable only to the same militia services as other colonists. After the armed settler took over his land, rations were to be available free of cost for twelve months and he could retain his arms and accoutrements, and would be supplied with ammunition. In this enlistment Charles measured half-an-inch taller than when he had joined the Navy, was still unmarried, and gave his occupation as sailor. By this time he was twenty-eight years old. On 30 December, the Choice, with Charles and other volunteers, arrived in New Plymouth[.]

Not much is known of Charles’ first few years in Taranaki. However, general information regarding the military settlers has been found in the Taranaki Museum. Among documents looked at were memos and orders of March and April 1864. These give an idea of some of the daily routines. ‘The whole of the men of the Melbourne Volunteers (sick and those on duty excepted) will parade for divine service at 8 a.m. with Belt and Sidearms’. Another noted ‘Men are not allowed to change duties with each other without permission of an officer’. Their house-keeping arrangements were commented on.

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Generations of Genes Phyllis Jeans 17 ISBN 0 473 03868 4

Generations of Genes Copyright © Phyllis Jeans 2000
All rights reserved ISBN 0 473 03868 4
PEMM Publishing Cambridge, New Zealand

[p17] [The Jeans Line]

Charles Jeans and Ellen Wilkinson

Parents of James Walter Jeans

Dorset, in the south-west of England was Charles Jeans’ county of origin. Born on 13 May 1835 he was baptised the following day in St. Swithun’s, parish church of Allington. This church, described by Hunt’s Dorset Directory as being of ‘Grecian or Italian style’ had been erected in 1827 to replace the old church. His parents were George Jeans and Susan Bartlett.

After his baptism, the next documentation of Charles, aged 6, appeared in the 1841 census, recorded along with his parents and sister Susan at Washing Pool Farm, Allington. Another ten years on and another census was taken. Charles (noted as an apprentice) was still living with his family, now in Allington village.

In 1854 on 29 January, Charles Jeans enlisted in the Royal Navy as an ordinary seaman, second class. London was given as his usual place of residence. His enlistment papers described him as nineteen years and nine months old, with sallow complexion, dark brown hair and five feet six inches in height. He had no birth marks or scars and had never been to sea. It was noted Charles had already had smallpox, as had five other men listed on the same page. The remaining four men had been vaccinated. Five of the ten men had no previous trade, Charles had been a baker, another a butcher; two had been carpenters and one a painter. His service number was 7554, and the ship he was entered in was the Crocodile. He enlisted for a period of ten years, although the agreement had a clause ‘provided my service should be so long required’. Eight days later, on 6 February 1854, Charles went from the Victory to the Caesar, a man-of-war, commissioned less than three weeks previously. The Caesar had ninety guns and its full complement was eight hundred and fifty officers, seamen, boys and marines. In a Muster Book of the Caesar, Charles’ embarkation debts for clothing, tobacco, soap and religious books amounted to £1-2s. A monthly allowance of £3-12s-6d was noted. This, and following information, was accessed at the Public Record Office, Kew, London.

Generations of Genes Phyllis Jeans 16 ISBN 0 473 03868 4

Generations of Genes Copyright © Phyllis Jeans 2000
All rights reserved ISBN 0 473 03868 4
PEMM Publishing Cambridge, New Zealand

[p16] [The Jeans Line]

three photographs

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Generations of Genes Phyllis Jeans 15 ISBN 0 473 03868 4

Generations of Genes Copyright © Phyllis Jeans 2000
All rights reserved ISBN 0 473 03868 4
PEMM Publishing Cambridge, New Zealand

[p15] [The Jeans Line]

three photographs

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Generations of Genes Phyllis Jeans 14 ISBN 0 473 03868 4

Generations of Genes Copyright © Phyllis Jeans 2000
All rights reserved ISBN 0 473 03868 4
PEMM Publishing Cambridge, New Zealand

[p14] [The Jeans Line]

four photographs

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