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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