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My Brickwall - English Roots - Richard CLARK(E)

Charleston, South Carolina, US
Hello All:

A newbie at this excellent site. :)

OK. My longtime brick wall is my GGF, Richard CLARK(E). (Sometimes, he was shown with E, others not).

This is what I know for a fact - from documents sitting by my keyboard as I write this ...

FACT. Richard CLARKE arrived at Moreton Bay (then NSW) Australia on February 9th, 1857, on the "PARSEE", a ship of 1200 tons, which left Southampton on 14 Nov 1856 under Capt Edwin Thomas.

FACT. On the Arrivals Immigration List, he is shown as "25 years old, single, labourer, of Cambridgeshire, father John unknown (whereabouts), mother Eliza dead, C of E, Read and Write, No relations in the colony, good health".
As a sidebar, many years later Richard wrote in a published "Men of Mark" entry, "...Born Cambridge, Educated there ...". I mention this because later someone gave information for his death certificate which reads "born Kent".

I am not sure IF or HOW Richard moved down the coast the Sydney - most took coastal ships, some went on an arduous 600 mile overland journey.

The next I have is that (anecdotally) he worked as a carpenter in Sydney where it is said he worked at a house which had as a servant, the lady who was to become his wife later on. Whatever transpired, Richard, and several other groups, DELANEY, TIERNEY, FITZPATRICK, et al, travelled togeher or apart into the inland of NSW towards the 'gold rush' and arrived in the Mudgee district early 1860s.

FACT. On 26th November, 1863, Richard ClarkE, bachelor of Guntawang, married Catherine DELANEY, spinster of Guntawang, in the RC church, Mudgee, in the presence of Donald Gillie or Gillis and Margaret Donaldson. Fr. Callaghan McCarthy. NSW 2413/500. Signed by Richard ClarkE and X for Catherine.

FACT. Catherine and Richard lived at 'the Cross Roads for over 40 years and produced several children, including my GF, Richard Francis CLARKE, 7th November, 1875, at Stoney Creek nr. Mudgee. NSW15101/6504

FACT. Richard CLARKE wrote a paid inscription in a who's who called "Australian Men of Mark" and although there seem to have been several editions, the one I have seen says: "Richard CLARKE, born Cambridge 1831, educated there, worked as a farm labourer and employed on the railways. Came 1857 to Brisbane, employed farm labourer, fencing and droving. 1863 married Catherine DELANEY and owns flourishing farm with horses and cattle, Mudgee. Modern Machinery, Free Trade advocate, 3 daughters, 2 sons." Please note here that he never said he went to Sydney and to me it seems he could have just as easiy worked his way to Mudgee from Brisbane, but I have no idea. The family anecdotes say he was in Sydney first.

FACT. Richard CLARKE died at the Cross Roads, Stoney Creek, Meroo Shire, 21st October, 1912 aged 81 years. (Note that the "Mudgee Guardian" clipping says he died 5th October. The clipping also says he came to the area early 1860s.) His death certificate copy D139205 says: Father JOHN CLARKE Mother Eliza HAN(D)****, father's quaility, labourer, date of burial 22nd October in the CE cemetery, Mudgee.

Catherine DELANEY CLARKE lived until she was 92 - died 10th March, 1925 and was buried in the RC section in Mudgee.

A final note - "Guntawang" was a land grant to pioneer Richard Rouse in the 1820s, near Gulgong and Mudgee. I have documents to show that Richard CLARKE was actaully able to buy his own land at Stoney Creek, some 120 acres, where he established his "flourishing farm". It is now a "flourishing vineyard" by the way.

So, that's all I know about my GGF. I have tried mightily to track him in the UK doing all the usual things, plus employing some limited paid help, to no avail. I am interested in the Richard Clarke as a boarder with a POOLEY in Cambridge in the 1851 census, and I am interested in the marriage in 1814 of a John CLARKE and Eliza HANCOCK in Whitechapel, London (Pallot's Index). Did they move to Cambridge.

When did Eliza die? Did John remarry? Was there really a John? I have seen a Clarke/Pooley marriage. Is the Cambridge Pooley of interest?

FACT. I have a BRICKWALL. :)

Any thoughts, anyone? I have Richard's photograph with Catherine, and all the documents from Australia, plus headstones etc. But NOTHING in the UK (I started in 1979 ...)




Loyal Member
Staff member
Robin Hood County
Hi Colin,

Have you considered this Richard Clarke (1841 census) born Cambridgeshire abt 1831 in the North Witchford Union Workhouse, civil parish Doddington

Class H0107
Piece 81
Folio 3
Page 2
Charleston, South Carolina, US
Hello Julie:

Sorry to ask a stupid question ... Do you mean he was born at the Workhouse?? or he was recorded in 1841 at the Workhouse?? I assume the latter, and he was born somewhere else (unknown).

No, never seen or heard of this before. Nice timeline. Don't know anything about Workhouses ... would this be where a 10 year old would go if the mother was dead, for example?

This could also be the same Richard who was then a Lodger with Sarah POOLEY in ??Judges Passage?? in Cambridge in the 1851 census.

Thanks for this ...


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