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David JOHNSTONE b. abt 1850 Scotland d. aft 1936

- parents
Charles JOHNSTONE b. 1792 d. 1 May 1868 Dumfries
Anne Halliday KIRK b. abt 1813 d. bef 1861 Dumfries

I can't find the marriage so far.

I'd like a look up for the family in 1841 & 1851 & 1861 please.


Hi Dave,

Familysearch pilot site has Davids dob as 8 April 1850 Dumfries, father
Charles Johnstone, mother Ann Halliday (not Kirk). Also marriage for Charles Johnstone and Ann Halliday.

22 Mar 1847 - Dumfries, Dumfries, Scotland
Hi Dave,

1851 - CP Dumfries
Address Gasstown

Charles Johnston head age 52 occ late officer of excise born Leyfields, Dumfriessh?
Anne wife age 38 born Dumfires
Joseph son age 3 born Dumfires
David son age 1 born Dumfries
William Kirk stepson age 12 born Dumfies
Hi Dave,

This could the family but charles year of birth is quite out.

1861 - CP Dumfries St Michael
Address Gateside

Charles Johnstone boarder age 85 occ formerly guager :confused: born Drysdale Dumfries
Joseph Johnstone boarder occ druggist born Dumfries
David Johnstone boarder age 11 born Dumfries

Head of household Peter Mcmurdo with his family.
Hi Dave,

This could be Charles in 1841 given his occupation of excise officer in 1851.

CP Kirriemuir, county Angus
Address South Muir

Charles Johnston age age 45 occ excise officer born Scotland
Henoratta Johnston age 45 born Scotland
Mary Johnston age 20 born Scotland
Davie Johnston age 15 born Scotland
George Johnston age 10 born Scotland
Joseph Johnston age 8 born Scotland
Johrd? Johnson age 6 born Scotland
David Mitchall age 2 born Angus

I will have a look in 1851 to see if this is a different family.

There is also a Chas Johnstone age 50 occ boatman born Fife with wife Agness and a few children. Will look for this family as well. Other than that in 1841 the other Charles Johnston(e)s occ are s/maker, wright, warper, joiner, labourer and plasterer.
Hello Julie,

Thanks you very much.

I took the KIRK bit off a tree. I took it to mean Halliday was a middle name. I see a stepson KIRK so it looks as though Anne married twice.

I have very little to go on. David ended up in Australia but I can't find his death so I can't get any help re his parents from a death certificate.


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Hi Dave,

1851 - CP Dumfries
Address Gasstown

Charles Johnston head age 52 occ late officer of excise born Leyfields, Dumfriessh?
Anne wife age 38 born Dumfires
Joseph son age 3 born Dumfires
David son age 1 born Dumfries
William Kirk stepson age 12 born Dumfies

Hello Julie,

Thanks. That looks like the family then.



We are researching this family. Our Joseph johnstone is a brother of David who immigrated to Canada. Have much more information on this family including a letter from David to his sister-in-law and family in Winnipeg.

looking forward to hearing from you.

Hello Wayne,

It's not a direct line and in fact very far out on a limb on my tree by several marriages.

Sorry, but I no more information on the family other than what is posted in this topic.

Feel free to ask any questions you have re the family and the members here will try to help you.

As far as filling gaps in my tree all I'm still looking for are David's arrival in Australia before 1878 when he married


and his death sometime after this Electoral Roll entry:

1936 N.S.W. Electoral Roll - Werriwa - Woonona
JOHNSTONE David, Stanhope street, Woonona, miner


Hi Dave

I believe David died in 1919. I found this death notice for him, and it fits with what we know.

Date of death 10 Aug 1919
Place of death Mental Hospital, Kenmore, Mulareeshire
name David johnston
age 69
Influenza, Pneumonia
duration 4 days
Dr H.T. Bourne, 9 Aug 1919
father not known parents
informant W.H.C. Rankin, manager, mental hospital, Kenmore: Registered 11 Aug 1919, goulburn
when buried 11 Aug 1919
buried Kemore Hospital Cemetery Cemetery, Kenmore
undertaker W. Clegg
minister J.E.A. Chapman
witness O. Haffer, S. Geagan
born Dumfries, Scotland
Married not known
age at marriage not known
spouse not known
children 3 children living, youngest 28, (names not known)

Hello Wayne,

I wondering if we are talking about the same David who married in 1878 in Grenfell. Clara remarried before 1919. There is no record of a divorce found so far.

758 COWLING Clara, 57 Ivy-street, domestic duties
759 COWLING William, 57 Ivy-street, engine-driver
1876 JOHNSTONE Lewin, 57 Ivy-street, cutter
1881 JOHNSTONE Muriel Constance, 57 Ivy-street, domestic duties
1882 JOHNSTONE Reginald, 57 Ivy-street, tram conductor

Children are listed as Muriel, Bert, Reg & Lou and step daughter Myra.

Clara is living in the same area:

1930 N.S.W Electoral Roll - Werriwa - Woonona
COWLING Clara Elizabeth, Wilga street, Corrimal, home duties

1936 N.S.W Electoral Roll - Werriwa - Woonona
COWLING Clara Elizabeth, Cross street, Corrimal, home duties


Four children still alive not three but 1891 does fit. But there are 13 JOHNSTONE, 60 JOHNSTON and 165 JOHNSON births registered in NSW in 1891.

The children of David & Clara:

Herbert Gladstone b. 1882 d. 1948
Reginald Cecil b. 1885 d. 1948
Muriel Constance b. 1888 d. 1942 (NUTT)
Otto Lewin b. 1891 d. 1945
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Does your David and Joseph have a brother John?

This looks like brothers in place of 1878 marriage:

1878-79 N.S.W Electoral Roll - The Lachlan
JOHNSTONE David, Grenfell, residence
JOHNSTONE John, Grenfell, residence

Did a different David JOHNSTONE marry Clara Elizabeth?

I don't have a copy of the 1878 marriage certificate.
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Hi Dave

I only have the marriage index for David and Clara in Australia

letter dated 20 jan 1895 from David to sister-in-law, nieces and nephews in winnipeg manitoba

-Working in the gold fields, not successfully
-Taken up tailering, but had to quit as it didn't agree with him.
-he was married - no name, but they didn't get along and she went home to her mother
- hadn't seen them in 3 years
-had 7 children, only mentions Herbert Gladstone, Reginald, and Muriel
-was writing to Peter McMurdo to get his birth certificate (to settle his fathers estate I believe) Peter McMurdo was the owner of the home that the Johnstone's were living in during the 1861 Dumfries Scotland census.

1885 Police warrant for David abandoning his children Herbert Gladstone and Reginal Cecil, complainant Mrs johnstone now of Grenfeld

1886 Charged on the warrant

1887 child dissertion, warrant discharged

Muriel was born in 1888 - after the abandonment charges
Otto was born in 1891 - It appears he did get back to see Clara, and left her pregnant each time. In the 1895 letter he probably didn't even know that Otto was born.

1905 Herbert Gladstone Johnstone married Isabella Paffard in Langley British Columbia, He was born Liama Australia, father David Johnstone, Mother Clara Fletcher. Herbert worked on the ships that travelled to BC, met Isabella while in port, got her pregnant, married, then abandoned her before the child was born. He returned to Australia, and is listed as single on his death record. He had the wandering ways of his father!!
- my take

There is only a mention of 3 of the living children in the death notice as David probably didn't know that Otto existed.
The age, his occupation and birth all fit with the information on the death certificate.
David did not have a brother John.

His siblings are William Kirk (from his mother Anne Hallidays first marriage), Joseph (our ancestor), and Alexander who we believed died in child birth along with Anne.
I am convinced we are talking the same David Johnstone and Clara Fletcher family.

Hello Wayne,

Thank you for that info. Some of what you have just mentioned certainly fits but other things still don't.

Three children, youngest 28 = 1891 = Otto if that is the right death certificate.

Marriage at Grenfell - I don't believe we have a 2nd David JOHNSTONE in the same small town on the Electoral Roll. Can't be a son (have to be at least 21 to get on the roll) so if not a brother then perhaps a cousin. Too much of a coincidence to simply say there is no connection.

A David JOHNSTONE, miner, living in the same area as Clara in 1930. Another coincidence?

If he took up tailering but had to quit why continue to call himself one - it became known for it to be included on that death certificate. I could understand him not giving out info re spouse and marriage given the circumstances you explained. That could be an explanation for that info to not be there.

How closely does age at death fit with what you know of his birth? Or is his birth taken from age at death?

I will try to find a copy of the marriage to Clara. That is the actual film of the register not a transcription someone has done. I want to view the original if I can find it in the local library.


Hi Dave

Just a quick note on David's birthdate.

Gender: Male
Birth Date: 8 Apr 1850
Birthplace:, Dumfries, Dumfries, Scotland
Recorded in: Dumfries, Dumfries, Scotland
Father: Charles JOHNSTONE
Mother: Ann HALLIDAY
Source: FHL Film 1067961
Dates: 1809 - 1855
1861 Scotland Dumfrieshire census
Name: Charles Johnstone
Age: 85
Estimated birth year: abt 1776
Relationship: Boarder
Gender: Male
Where born: Drysdale, Dumfries
Registration Number: 821
Registration district: Dumfries
Civil parish: Dumfries St Michael
County: Dumfriesshire
Address: Gateside
Occupation: Formerly Guager
ED: 20
Page: 31 (click to see others on page)
Household schedule number: 44
Line: 21
Roll: CSSCT1861_143
Household Members:
Name Age
Charles Johnstone 85 (a poor guess on someone's part)
David Johnstone 11
Joseph Johnstone 13
John McMurdo 20
Mary McMurdo 47
Mary McMurdo 15
Peter McMurdo 51
Peter McMurdo 10
William McMurdo 17

Hello Wayne,


I will also check the Electoral Roll in Grenfell and Werriwa from 1878 up to 1936.

NSW death certificates have 'Time in Aust colonies' which if filled in would have been handy.

So far I've not been able to find David's arrival in Australia.


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