In the 1850s and 1860s George Young, my husband Greg’s great great grandfather, followed the Victorian gold rushes from Beechworth to Maryborough. He settled finally at Lamplough, a few miles south-east of Avoca.
On his father’s mother’s side Greg’s great grandfather Frederick James Cross, who had been born at Buninyong near Ballarat to a gold miner, took up mining and later farming near Homebush, a few miles north-east of Avoca. John Plowright, another of Greg’s great great grandfathers, also worked as a miner at Homebush.
The Avoca and District Historical Society http://home.vicnet.net.au/~adhs/ was founded in 1984. It has amassed an extensive card-index of references to Avoca people and events, compiled from many differerent sources. This material has not been published online, so if you are researching Avoca family history it is well worth a visit. For a small fee the Society will look up material on your behalf.
Greg and I have visited the society many times. Some of the index material there includes information from
In May 1898, three years before her death, my husband Greg’s great great grandmother Ellen Cross née Murray (1836–1901) made a will providing for her unmarried daughters and leaving two specific bequests, her piano and her husband’s medicine chest.
Ellen, born in Dublin, emigrated to Australia in 1854 She was 17 years old and her occupation on the passenger list was domestic servant. In 1856 at Buninyong near Ballarat she married James Cross, a gold miner from Liverpool, trained as a chemist (druggist). They had eleven children, ten of them born in the small mining town of Carngham, west of Ballarat, where she and James had settled with their first child in about 1858.
James died of dysentery in 1882, and Ellen, forty-five years old, became a widow with ten children (one child had died young). The youngest child was three. Ellen continued to live in Carngham. I do not know how she managed to support herself and her large family.
From her will it appears that Ellen was a straightforward and practical woman. I was interested that she had a piano. I am not sure when she would have learned to play. Also caring for so many young children as a widow, when she might have had a chance to play.
As they grew older the children remained close and in touch with each other. Most of them, however, moved away from Carngham.
This is the last Will and
Testament of me
of Snake Valley
Widow of the late James Cross.
After payment of all my just debts and funeral & testamentary expenses I Give Devise and Bequeath unto my children Frederick James Cross, Ellen Hawkins, George Murray Cross, Ann Bailey Cross, Elizabeth Grapel Cross, Jane Bailey Snell, Mary Gore Cross, Isabella Murray Bowes, Harriet Mercer Cross, and Margaret Plowright Cross, all monies now in my possession, or that I may become possessed of, to be divided in equal parts among them.
I devise my house & furniture to my unmarried daughters, Ann Bailey, Elizabeth Grapel, Mary Gore, Harriet Mercer and Margaret Plowright. In the event of either of these marrying, the property shall remain for the benefit of those still unmarried, and in the event of all marrying, the house and furniture shall be sold and the proceeds divided among all my children then living, in equal parts.
I will and devise my “Piano” to my two daughters Harriet Mercer and Margaret Plowright, jointly.
I bequeath my late husbands medicine chest to my son George Murray Cross for his sole use and benefit.
And I hereby appoint Frederick James Cross and Ann Bailey Cross Executors of this my Will in witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand this 20th day of May 1898
Witnesses to Ellen’s signature were Josephine Margaret Williams and Matthew Daniel Williams of The Vicarage, Smythesdale.
Several of the great great grandfathers of my husband Greg, attracted by the lure of instant wealth on the goldfields, came to Australia in the 1850s and 1860s.
One was James Cross (1828–1882), from Liverpool, who married a Dublin girl named Ellen Murray (1837–1901) at Buninyong near Ballarat on 28 March 1856.
James and Ellen moved to Carngham from Green Hill at Durham Lead, a few miles south of Ballarat, after the birth of Frederick James Cross (1857–1929), their oldest son. Their second child Ellen (1859–1903), was one of ten more children, all born at Carngham, the youngest in 1878.
Carngham, 27 km west of Ballarat and 4 km north of Snake Valley, was a gold-rush settlement, surveyed and proclaimed a township in 1855. The Ballarat Star reported the rush to Carngham in November 1857; the Cross family’s move from the Green Hill alluvial diggings was probably partly in response to this news.
James Cross died in Carngham from dysentery on 31 January 1882. His youngest child was just three years old.
Jane Bailey Cross, the sixth child of James and Ellen, was born on 3 August 1866. She is seated on the right of the above photograph.
On 26 December 1895 Jane Bailey Cross married George Snell at the Anglican Holy Trinity Church, Carngham. A marriage notice placed in the Melbourne Age 25 January 1896 reads:
SNELL—CROSS – On the 26th December, at Holy Trinity Church, Carngham, by Rev. M.D. Williams, George, youngest son of late Richard Snell, to Jane Bailey, daughter of late James Cross, both of Carngham.
George Snell was a Snake Valley butcher.
Jane and George had six children:
Marjorie Merle 1898–1959
Richard Murray 1900–1975
Reginald Cross 1902–1959
Mona Robina 1904–1905
Sydney Oswald (Peter) 1905–1946
Dorothy Isabel (Dorrie) 1905–2001
On a visit to Ballarat in 1993 Greg and I were delighted to meet Dorrie Brumby and her husband John at their home in Snake Valley. Dorrie was kind and warm; John, joking that he was not John Brumby the Leader of the Opposition in Victoria, showed us his collection of home-made windmills.
Jane Snell died on 3 March 1930 at Carngham and was buried in Carngham Cemetery near her parents and her brother Frederick. George Snell died in 1944.
Recently I was contacted by a great granddaughter of Jane who shared the two photographs of Jane and photographs of other family members. She wrote “It has always seemed like something of a lottery in families as to who ends up with the photos so sharing images seems like the sensible thing to do.” I am very grateful to members of our extended family who help to preserve our history by sharing their photographs.
Ellen Murray, one of Greg’s great great grandmothers, arrived in Victoria in 1854 as an assisted immigrant on the ‘Persian‘. Also on board was her sister Bridget. The passenger list records Bridget and Ellen Murray as both from Dublin. Their religion was Catholic; both could read and Ellen could also write; Bridget was twenty-four (which means that she was born about 1830) and Ellen was eighteen (born about 1836).
Ellen married James Cross, a gold digger, at Buninyong in 1856. The marriage certificate states her father was George Murray, a glassblower, and Ellen nee Dory.
On 1 May 1825 George Murray married Eleanor Doyle at St Mary’s (Pro-Cathedral), Dublin. Witnesses to their marriage were Joseph Carolan and Margaret Ryan. I believe these are Ellen Cross nee Murray’s parents and that Doyle was mistranscribed on the marriage certificate.
George and Ellen (Eleanor) Murray had the following children baptised mostly at St Mary’s
Mary, baptised 18 March 1826
Peter, baptised 17 May 1827 at St Michael and John’s, Dublin
Bridget, baptised 12 November 1828
Peter, baptised 21 February 1831 (2 records for same name and date)
Joseph, baptised 3 April 1834
Ellen, baptised 21 May 1836
In 1826 at the time of Mary Murray’s baptism the family were living at McLinburg Street. This is probably Mecklenburg Street which later had an unsavoury reputation.
The back gate of the Gloucester Street laundry, where the delivery vans once came and went, is on Railway Street, formerly called Mecklenburg Street. In 1904, Mecklenburg Street was a terrace of grand but fading Georgian houses, and it was here that James Joyce set the “nighttown” section of his novel “Ulysses,” a phantasmagoric visit to a brothel run by “a massive whoremistress” called Bella Cohen.
She was a historical figure. And Mecklenburg Street was the heart of a square mile of brothels, speakeasies and slums that took its informal name — Monto — from Montgomery Street, the next street over. It was here, when southern Ireland was still part of the United Kingdom, and when Dublin was a major garrison town of the British Empire, that the authorities tolerated, even encouraged, what was often described as the biggest red-light district in Europe.
Monto was a last resort for runaways, widows and abandoned wives. Madams like Bella Cohen controlled them with violence and money, keeping them in debt to pay for clothes and lodgings. As they left their prime teen years, lost their health and their looks, the women passed from “flash houses” for the wealthy to the cheap “shilling houses” and then to the alleys. Those who became pregnant were dumped on the street.
Georgian houses in 1826 of course would have been relatively new and perhaps the neighbourhood was not so run down at the time.
Glassmaking in Dublin probably began about 1675. There were many glass houses in Dublin in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Many products were produced in Dublin including bottles, cut glass, decanters and goblets, looking glass, plate glass for coaches.
Ireland, Catholic Parish Registers, 1655-1915 retrieved through ancestry.com
Westropp, Michael Seymour Dudley (1920). Irish glass : an account of glass-making in Ireland from the XVIth century to the present day. Herbert Jenkins, London. Retrieved through archive.org.
Today on my Ancestry.com family tree today I noticed a new hint for my husband’s 3rd great grandmother Ellen née Dony or Dory, wife of a glassblower named George Murray. (Their daughter Ellen Murray provided information about her parents when she married James Cross, a gold digger, at Buninyong in 1856.)
To date I have had no luck in finding what happened to Bridget, nor have I been able to track down their family in Ireland.
Today’s hint for Ellen Dony or Dory was a baptism record for a daughter called Ellen with parents George and Ellen Murray. The baptism was in 1836 in Dublin. The father’s occupation is not given.
At first I didn’t feel completely confident that these were Greg’s forebears. Murray is a common surname in Dublin, and I thought that at the time there was probably more than one couple called George and Ellen with a child named Ellen.
So I decided to search the Ireland Catholic Parish Registers 1655-1915 for all children born with the surname Murray, father George and mother Ellen. I did not restrict the search by place or time. If there were many children belonging to many couples with the same names it would be a mistake to assume that the baptism belonged to Greg’s great great grandmother and her parents.
There were only five records, with two belonging to the same child. All baptisms were at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral in Dublin.
Bridget, baptised 12 November 1828
Peter, baptised 21 February 1831 (2 records for same name and date)
Josh, baptised 3 April 1834
Ellen, baptised 21 May 1836
I have not found any other couples named George and Ellen Murray having children baptised in Dublin at this time. I was very pleased that Bridget’s baptism turned up in the results, for she appears to have been roughly the right age to be the Bridget recorded on the Persian‘s passenger list.
I have concluded that there is a strong chance the Bridget and Ellen of these baptisms are indeed Greg’s relatives and that they had two brothers, Peter and Josh, probably Joseph.
I have decided to accept the hint and use the information to try to make make further progress on this branch of the tree.
Recently I’ve been doing a bit of research about Greg’s 3rd great grandfather James Cross (c 1791 – 1853). I have been greatly helped by contributions from several of Greg’s cousins who are also interested in their Cross ancestors. Here’s what I’ve turned up.
On 28 December 1819 James Cross married Ann Bailey (1791 – 1860). At the time he was employed as a brewer. He lived at Penketh, about ten miles east of Liverpool.
Between 1820 and 1822 James and Ann had seven children, two girls and five boys:
John Cross 1820–1867
Thomas Bailey Cross 1822–1889
Ellen (Helen) Cross 1824–1840
Ann Jane Cross 1826–1827
James Cross 1828–1882
William Grapel Cross 1832– 1876
Frederick Beswick Cross 1833–1910
James and Ann’s third child, the eldest daughter, was called Ellen. She was born 9 February 1824 and baptised in the Chapelry of Hale on 22 August 1824. The baptism register records James’s occupation as road surveyor and their abode as St Helens. Ellen Cross was Greg’s 3rd great aunt.
On the 1841 census James Cross, occupation farmer, was living with his wife Ann and three of his five sons: Thomas, James and Francis. There is no mention of daughters.
The eldest son, John, was a surgeon’s apprentice on the 1841 census living with Thomas Gaskill surgeon in Prescott.
James and Ann’s son William Grapel Cross was possibly at school. He was then about ten years old but ten years later he was with the family on the 1851 census. There is a William Cross at a grammar school in Whalley in 1841. The age and Lancashire location seem to fit, and the fact that he later got a job as an Admiralty clerk indicates he was well educated.
Ellen and her sister Ann Jane who was born in 1826 were not with the family.
Ann Jane Cross was born 28 June 1826 and baptised 16 July 1826 at St Helens, Lancashire. There is a burial on 14 May 1827 at St Mary, Hale, Lancashire, England of an Anne Jane Cross with Age: 1 Abode: St Helens. She seems likely to have been Anne the daughter of James and Ann.
There is a marriage of Ellen Cross daughter of James Cross, husbandman of Eccleston, in 1842. Ellen was a minor and this is consistent with the 1824 birth-date as she would then have been 18. A husbandman’s status was inferior to that of a yeoman. The latter owned land; the former did not.
Ellen could not sign her name, nor could her husband and the witnesses. From what I know of the family of James and Ann Cross it seems unlikely that Ellen could not sign her own name. I am also not able to identify the witness Elizabeth Cross.
I found an 1840 burial at St Thomas Eccleston for a Helen Cross. Her age is given as 16. This is consistent with Ellen’s 1824 year of birth. Her abode is recorded as Eccleston. There are no other clues to suggest that this Helen Cross was indeed Ellen the daughter of James and Ann Cross.
To confirm my hunch that Ellen daughter of James and Ann was Helen who was buried at Ecclestone in 1840, I ordered the death certificate of Helen Cross from the UK General Register Office.
Helen Cross, aged 16 years 2 months, daughter of James Cross, clerk, died of consumption on 10 April 1840 at Eccleston. This Helen’s age matches that of Ellen born February 1824.
Different documents give different occupations for James Cross, but I believe that for each of the instances that it is the same person.
Consumption, now more commonly known as tuberculosis, is an infectious bacterial disease, usually affecting the lungs. A common symptom is a persistent cough, which in later stages brings up blood. The patient, with no appetite, loses weight. Other symptoms include a high temperature, night sweats, and extreme tiredness. Tuberculosis was usually a slow killer; patients could waste away for years.
An 1840 study attributed one fifth of deaths in England to consumption. It has been claimed “Tuberculosis was so prevalent in Europe and the United States during the period comprising the end of the 18th century through the first half of the 19th century that almost every family on the two continents was affected in some way by the disease.”
In 1838 the death rate in England and Wales from tuberculosis was around 4,000 deaths per 1 million people; it fell to around 3,000 per million in 1850. The improvements in the death rate have been attributed to improvements in food supplies and nutrition as the improvements are before knowledge of the cause of the disease or any treatment was available.
The World Health Organisation reports that today tuberculosis is still one of the top 10 causes of death and the leading cause from a single infectious agent. Worldwide 1.5 million people died from TB in 2018; over 95% of cases and deaths are in developing countries. The WHO estimated 58 million lives were saved through TB diagnosis and treatment between 2000 and 2018 and the WHO hopes to eliminate TB by 2030.
Scrimshaw, Nevin S. Integrating nutrition into programmes of primary health care, Food and Nutrition Bulletin Volume 10, Number 4, 1988 (United Nations University Press, 1988, 74 p.) retrieved from http://preview.tinyurl.com/lyodwzf
On 12 May 2019 Greg, Peter, and I drove from Manchester to Liverpool, forty miles to the west. Charlotte stayed behind to catch up with one of her English friends. We visited St Helens, the Walker Art Gallery, a National Trust property called Speke Hall, and St Mary’s Church Hale.
There’s a family connection. Greg’s 3rd great grandfather James Cross (1791 – 1853) was from Windle, near St Helens, about half-way between Liverpool and Manchester (see ‘W is for Windle‘), and some of his forebears were from Hale.
It was a perfect spring day, and the countryside looked very pretty. We drove to St Helens, our first stop, wondering where the grimy industrial North had got to. Not a satanic mill in sight…
St Helens town centre
The Parish Church of St Helens associated with James Cross and his family burned down in 1916. However, the rebuilt church was open, with Sunday morning service just about to begin. We talked to a few people, all of them very friendly and welcoming.
A brief history of the church was on display. The church burned down in 1916, the church we were looking at was not the one Greg’s forebears knew.
St Helens Parish Church
In Liverpool we drove past the docks to get to the city centre. The enormous port handles about a third of England’s sea-cargo. (L is for leaving Liverpool)
The Walker Art Gallery has a splendid collection of pre-Raphaelite and other Victorian art, much of which we had seen in reproduction. It was great fun to see familiar works for real, close-up.
On the walk to the gallery we passed crowds of football fans on their way to the stadium, singing their team songs. There’s footy crowds in Australia, of course, especially in Victoria, where we live, but not much singing. A pity. A large number of voices raised in unison can be very stirring.
Liverpool Football Club fans singing before the game
Orderly queues for transport to the football game. Cenotaph in the foreground and the North Western Hotel is behind.
On our way back to Manchester we visited the pretty village of Hale, ten miles or so up the Mersey estuary, home of Greg’s Bailey forebears. At the door of St Mary’s Church were Bailey headstones. Unfortunately these were not those of Greg’s fourth great grandparents Ellen Bailey née Swift (1771 – 1836) and her husband Thomas Bailey (1759 – 1843), but an Ellen Bailey who died in 1830 and a Thomas Bailey who died 1858. I shall have to work out if and how these Baileys are related. Even so, coming across the Bailey headstones was a bit of family history serendipity.
My husband Greg’s 3rd great grandfather James Cross (1791 – 1853) was from Windle, near St Helens, about ten miles from Liverpool in England.
Map showing Windle, St Helens, Hardshaw, Eccleston, Prescot, Penketh, Hale, Halewood, and20 Grove Street, Liverpool
James Cross married Ann Bailey (1791 – 1861) on 28 December 1819 at Hale. Their marriage was announced in the Lancaster Gazette on 8 January 1820:
“Same day [On Monday se’nnight], at Hale, Mr James Cross, of Penketh Brewery, to Miss Bailey, Halewood.”
Their oldest son John (1820 – 1867) was baptised at Prescot on 28 December 1820, a year after their marriage. The family was then living at Penketh, on the upper Mersey. James’s occupation was ‘Brewer’.
The Penketh brewery was later acquired by a Methodist family called Parker. Not wanting a brewery in their village, it was turned into a tannery. The buildings were demolished in 1996.
Looking East along Tannery Lane Penketh,at the old Tannery buildings. Photographed July 1996.
Thomas Bailey Cross, the second son of James and Ann, was born on 21 April 1822 at Windle and baptised on 13 July 1823 at St Mary, Hale. On this occasion the occupation of his father James was given as ‘road surveyor’.
Ellen Cross was born 9 February 1824 and baptised at St Mary’s Hale. Her father’s occupation was road surveyor and their abode St Helens.
Ann Jane Cross was born 28 June 1826 and baptised at Prescot on 16 July. James was a road surveyor and their abode was Hardshaw.
Greg’s great great grandfather James Cross (1828 – 1882) was born 28 March 1828 at Windle. He was baptised 4 September 1828 in the parish of St Helens. He is recorded as the son of James and Ann Cross; his father’s occupation was given as Surveyor and the address as Eccleston.
William Grapel Cross was baptised at Liverpool St Peter on 19 October 1832, the son of James and Ann of Eccleston Parish of Prescot. James’s occupation was agent. Thirteen children were baptised there on that day.
Frederick Beswick Cross was baptised 12 August 1835 at St Helens, Lancashire. The family was living at Eccleston and James’s occupation was agent.
On the 1841 census James, Ann and their children James, Thomas and Frederick were living at Eccleston. The occupation of James senior is given as farmer. They were neighbours of a land surveyor named Sylvester Mercer, aged 60, and his family. ‘Mercer’ was used as a second forename in some members of later generations of the Cross family.
On the 1851 census James, Ann, and their children Thomas, William, and Frederick were living in Liverpool at 20 Grove Street. James was a retired farmer, Thomas was a coffee and sugar merchant, William was a clerk to a coffee and sugar merchant, and Frederick was apprentice to a Tailor [or so it appears; I am not sure of the transcription].
A useful source of information about my family is an album of photographs that came to me from my parents-in-law Peter Young (1920 – 1988) and Marjorie (1920 – 2003).
A few years before he died Peter spent an afternoon going through the photos with me, explaining where they were taken and naming the people in them. I wrote this information on the backs of them, and I’m very glad that I did, for without this it would be very difficult now to work out who was who. Even so there are gaps. I can’t identify all the people in every photograph.
The photos below are of Peter’s cousins, who lived at Carwarp, near Mildura. He called them the Mallee kids.
Peter’s mother Elizabeth Young nee Cross (1900 – 1949) was one of ten children. One of her older brothers, George Murray Cross (1890 – 1962) served in World War I, was wounded in France and returned home in 1917. In 1918 he married Elsie Agnes Brown (1889 – 1959).
When they married George and Elsie Cross moved first to Ouyen then to Ginquam West, close to Mildura. Not long afterwards, they took up a wheat and sheep farm at Carwarp, about 30 kilometres south.
The Mallee dry and harsh, tough to farm, and many Soldier Settlers couldn’t make a go of it. George Cross, however, ran his farm there until near to his death in 1962 when his son Alex took it over.
One of George’s grand daughters remembers the farm was
640 acres & dry land cropping. Wheat & sheep as l recall. He apparently said that if it were irrigated, he could grow anything. It’s now a winery !
Some of the frustration of Soldiers Settlers can be detected from a letter George Cross wrote to the Soldiers’ Settlement Board in 1923: “My wife and family left here on the 10 January last as I did not consider that the camp we were living in was fit for any woman to live in. I have since pulled it down and there is no possibility of their return until such time as someone at your end comes out of their trance and gets the job done.” His wife and children rejoined George Cross at the end of the year.
The Cross’s farm was 640 acres, 1 square mile (just under 260 hectares), the size of the average Soldiers Settler farm. It was new country, not previously cultivated.
In 1929 George Cross gave evidence to a committee looking at the size of viable farms (see below).
In 1935 an inspector of George Cross’s wheat and sheep farm noted “ the eldest boy assists with all the farm work”. Jim Cross was then 16 years old. “The Limits of Hope”, a history by Marilyn Lake of post-WW1 Soldier Settlement, notes that the work of grown-up children often contributed significantly to a farm’s success.
George and Elsie Cross had five children:
James Murray (Jim) 1919 -2007 born Ouyen
Alex Watson (Alex) 1921 – 2005 born Mildura
Caroline Elsie (Carol known as Elsie when young) 1923 – 2017
Frederick George (Fred) 1924 – 2003
Beryl Lillian (Beryl) 1934 – 2006
The following photos are from the collection of my father-in-law
Jim 3 years 10 months, Alex 2 years; 1923
Jim & Alex carting wood Christmas 1924
Elsie and Fred Christmas 1924
Fred Cross age 10 months in 1925
“This was taken at a Birthday party last August. I put a mark near Jim & Alex. I am in the shade of the tree with Fred in my arms & Elsie is along side of me.” Caption presumably by George Cross. Fred was born September 1924 and looks about 2 in the photo so I think the photo dates from August 1926. Jim would have been 7, Alex 5 and Elsie 3.
The Mallee kids: Jim Elsie, Fred and Alex Cross
“This was taken from the lower end of the dam looking towards the house.”
“This is rather a good view, only the top of the mill is cut off. Better luck next time”
“Do you recognise this building?” I am not sure why FJ or Ann Jane Cross should recognise the building – was it moved from Homebush to Carwarp?
“This is a good view of the mill & tank. The three boys up the ladder. Alex at the top.”
File of G. M. Cross, DSL 217. Cross to CSB, 22 March 1923. VPRS 749, item 69, quoted in Marilyn Lake, The Limits of Hope: Soldier Settlement in Victoria 1915–38 (Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1987) p. 155.
VPRS 5357, P0, unit 2667 : Land Selection And Correspondence Files 01695/198.6 GEORGE MURRAY CROSS THOMAS LANIGAN WILLIAM LEAMON CARWARP WEST 1 1A 695–2–0
VPRS 5714, P0, unit 2409 : Land Selection Files, Section 12 Closer Settlement Act 1938 [including obsolete and top numbered Closer Settlement and WW1 Discharged Soldier Settlement files] C11768 GEORGE M CROSS CARWARP WEST 1 1A 695–2–0
Will and probate VPRS 28/ P4 unit 2858, item 595/791 and VPRS 7591/ P3 unit 477, item 595/791 George Murray CROSS Date of grant: 23 May 1963; Date of death: 12 Aug 1962; Occupation: Farmer; Residence: Carwarp
Marilyn Lake, The Limits of Hope: Soldier Settlement in Victoria 1915–38 (Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1987) pp.155, 164
I don’t have a favourite photograph but I appreciate the photograph collection of my parents-in-law. I can remember sitting down with my father-in-law Peter Young (1920-1988) and asking him who was who in his collection of photographs. I noted down his answers in pencil on the back of each photo. Because we had that conversation, I have been able to work out the identity of many of those pictured. But despite these annotations there are still many puzzles.
Peter Young (1920-1988) sitting on a lion at the Ballarat Botanical Gardens about 1924
Peter (wearing a tie) and Elizabeth Young nee Cross (wearing a striped dress) sitting on a cannon opposite the Ballarat Botanical Gardens in about 1924
stamped “3 73” on the back, Peter identified this as perhaps Uncle Fred and Maggie. Uncle Fred could have been Fredrick Beswick Cross (1893-1959), brother of Elizabeth, father of Ethel and Freda Cross who might be the two small girls pictured picnicking. But it could also be Frederick Fletcher (1890-1967) who married Margaret Cross (1897-1926), Elizabeth’s sister and Peter’s aunt.
A picnic near the Ballarat Botanical Gardens about 1924. Elizabeth young nee Cross (1900-1949) is wearing a striped dress. Her son Peter is the small boy seated wearing a tie. The older woman in a black dress is probably Anne Jane Cross nee Plowright (1862-1930), Elizabeth’s mother. I suspect the man in the hat might be Frederick James Cross (1857-1929), Elizabeth’s father but I am not sure. The two little girls might be Ethel and Freda Cross, born 1919 and 1920, Peter’s cousins and about the same age. I am not sure about the other two women, though the woman sitting by the tree is most likely one of Elizabeth’s sisters.
The last three photographs were all developed from the same roll of film based on the stamp of “3 73” on the back. I assume they were taken on the same day. Perhaps some cousins also have photographs taken on that day and can better identify those pictured.
The locations of these photographs are still recognisable. Children still sit on the lion and have their photos taken when visiting the Ballarat Botanical Gardens.