Watson and Canet Family History Site
Charles Thomas WATSON was born on the 28 Jan 1918, in Bendigo, Vic, Australia. He was the son of George Douglas WATSON and Lorette Mabel HARPER. He lived his early life in Bendigo and after the early death of his mother, he went to live with relatives. He attended school at Bealiba State School, finishing in Grade 8 in 1931.
Immediately prior to his enlistment in the Army, he was working at the Olympic Tyre and Rubber Company in West Footscray, Vic.
He enlisted in the Army on 17 Dec 1941. He was initially in the 11th Australian Infantry Battlion, but finished his service in the 22nd Australian Infantry Battalion. During his service he fought in Bougainville.
I have a letter written during this time, which are the words to a song written about the time in Bougainville. I don't know who wrote it.
Letter Containing Song Lyrics, Sent from New Britain During World War Two
George Douglas WATSON was born 29 Nov 1885 in Sandhurst (Bendigo), Vic, Australia and died at Dunolly, Vic, Australia as the result of typhoid fever on 6 Feb 1933. He married Lorette Mabel HARPER on the 1 March, 1911 at Inglewood, Vic, Australia. On his marriage certificate from 1911, his occupation is listed as carpenter, in 1914 a miner, living at Wilson and Daly St, Long Gully, Vic. In 1919, George and Lorette were living at 9 Skene St, Bendigo, Vic. and on his death certificate, as Forest Foreman. Family legend had always had it that he died playing cricket, but his death certificate indicates that he died of typhoid. Typhoid was still common in the Bendigo area until the mid-1930's when a new sewerage system was put into the town.
Lorette Mabel HARPER was 30 Jul 1888 in Inglewood, Vic, Australia and died 11 Jul 1923 in Bendigo, Vic, Australia. She was from a large family of 10 children of John HARPER and Elizabeth Ann BLANDTHORN. At some time during the 1860's, the Harper family were living in the mining town of Berlin. In 1909 she is living with her father at Somerville St, Bendigo, Vic, doing domestic duties. Her mother was dead by this time so it's likely she was taking care of him.
George Cumming WATSON was born on 20 Mar 1857 in Sandhurst, Vic, Australia, the son of George Douglas WATSON and Anna CUMMING. He spent most of his life as a carpenter, living in and around the Bendigo area. In 1936, the year before his death on 20 Sep 1937, he was living at 54 Uley St, Bendigo, Vic, Australia. He married Lucy Maria HUGHES on 10 Mar 1885 at Sandhurst, Vic, Australia. They had three children - George Douglas, Charles Gordon (1887-1975) and Alice Lousia (1888-1943).
Lucy Maria HUGHES was born Jul 1863 in Sandhurst, Vic, Australia and died 7 Aug 1895 in Bendigo, Vic, Australia. She was the daughter of John HUGHES and Sarah Ann DAVIS.
John HARPER was born on 17 Nov 1856 at Castlemaine, Vic, Australia and died on 13 Mar 1927 in Victoria, Australia.
Children of John HARPER and Elizabeth BLANDTHORN are:
Elizabeth Ann BLANDTHORN was born on 12 Jun 1860 in Castlemaine, Vic, Australia. The daughter of Thomas George BLANDTHORN and Sarah Ann MUNRO. According to her death certficate, Elizabeth spent 7 years in New Zealand and 37 in Victoria. So it seems that the whole family may have spent time in New Zealand or that the information about her fathers years there have been transferred to her.
George Douglas WATSON was born on 29 Mar 1820, in Uddingston, Lanarkshire, Scotland. He was the son of George WATSON (Coal Merchant) and Jean LOTTIMER/LORRIMER. On 4 Jun 1852 he married Anna CUMMING in Glasgow, Scotland. His profession is listed as House Servant on his marriage record. By 1855 he is living in Emerald Hill, Vic, Australia. This area is close to the port of Port Melbourne and a common first stop for newly arrived immigrants. In 1857, at the time of the birth of his third son, George Cumming, he and his family are living Sandhurst, Vic, Australia and he is working as a miner. He died 3 Jan 1863.
Anna CUMMING was born in 1821 in Culling, Aberdeenshire, Scotland. The facts about her birth are supposition at this point in time as I have very few facts to cross-check with. She died on 3 Sep 1891 in Bendigo, Vic, Australia.
In 1874, Anna purchased a small cottage, possibly the one she was living in at the time of her death. This cottage was located in Sheepwash Road, Bendigo and was a 4 room weatherboard cottage with a stables.
In 1886, according to the Bendigo Advertiser, she was granted the licence for the Glasgow Arms Hotel in Williamson St, Sandhurst. This pub was located on the corner of Williamson and McLaren St, Sandhurst. It had 7 rooms, was built of brick and also had a stables. Her will also lists an interest in the Junction Hotel. No location is know for this establishment. She held both these properties until her death in 1891. It is possible that in the months before her death, the licencee of the Glasgow Arms Hotel was
At the time of her death she had considerable property assets. A transcription of her will is available on the documents page of this site. It appears she had strong connections with the Presbytarian Church, as one of the executors of her will was the Rev. James NISH. He was a pioneering clergyman in both New South Wales and Victoria. He was crucial to the establishment of several Presbyterian congregations. Also mentioned as an executor is Mr Henry O'NEIL, a mining investor.
From Bendigo Advertiser Personal Notices 1881-1895
Children of George Douglas WATSON and Anna CUMMING are:
John HUGHES was born 1828 in Gloucestershire, England, and died 14 May 1884 in Sandhurst, Vic, Australia. He married Sarah Ann DAVIS 15 Apr 1852 in Melbourne, Vic, Australia, daughter of SEPTIMUS DAVIS and LUCY CHURCH. She was born 12 Dec 1827 in Chew Magna, Somerset, England, and died 17 Jun 1903 in Camberwell, Vic, Australia. In 1863 his occupation is listed as dairyman. There is a John Huges mentioned in the 1856 Vic Electoral Roll in Long Gully, a miner. But I don't know if it's the same person.
Sarah Ann DAVIS was born on 12 Dec 1827 in Chew Magna, Somerset, England.
She was the daughter of Septimus DAVIS and Lucy CHURCH. Following other
members of the family, Sarah Ann arrived in Victoria on the "Constance"
on the 27 Oct 1851. It is likely that she went to live her siblings, George
and Maria who had come out to Australia previously. She married the next
year on 15 April 1852 to John HUGHES at St.James Church in Melbourne,
Vic, Australia. They moved to Sandhurst (now Bendigo) and were to have
10 children. John died early at 56 years of age on the 14 May 1884 and
Sarah Ann then moved to Camberwell in Melbourne to live. She lived to
her 75th year, dying on 18 June 1903. Only six of Sarah Ann's children
were to survive, those who died were buried with their father at White
Hill Cemetery, Bendigo.
Children of JOHN HUGHES and SARAH DAVIS are:
Henry James HARPER was born around 1812 in Bere Alton, Devon, England and christened on 6 Sept 1812 in Calstock, Cornwall, England. He arrived in New Zealand at New Plymouth on the William Byrne on 31 March 1841. His first wife, Harriet FLOYD and their children were also on the ship with him.
On the 17 Jan 1848 he married Ellen BRAY in Adelaide, SA, Australia. The family stayed for some time in South Australia, but then moved to Castlemaine. Around 1852, the family lived in the mining settlement of Berlin, Vic, Australia for some period (now called Rheola). He died on 17 Jan 1877 in Bendigo.
Prior to his marriage to Ellen BRAY, Henry was married to Harriet FLOYD in Buckland, Devon, England on24 Mar 1834. They had four children, some of whom were born in New Zealand. Harriet died on 7 Jun 1845.
Children of HENRY HARPER and HARRIET FLOYD are:
Ellen BRAY was born about 1829 in Cornwall, England. Ellen and her sister, Eliza came to Australia on the Cressy, arriving in Adelaide on 19 Aug, 1847 after a 97 day voyage. She met and married Henry Jame HARPER on 19 Jan 1848 in Adelaide. She died on 26 Sep 1888 in Sandhurst, Vic, Australia.
On two of her childrens records her maiden name is recorded as BLAY.
Children of HENRY HARPER and ELLEN BRAY are:
Thomas George BLANDTHORN was born in England in about 1830. The location of his birth is a matter of confusion. It is listed as Chester on his daughers birth certificate but Manchester on his death certificate. I think Manchester is more likely, as it could be abbreviated to Chester. Prior to his arrival in Australia, Thomas spent 11 years in New Zealand. He married Sarah Ann MUNRO on 15 Nov 1852 in Collingwood, Vic, Australia. In Jun 1860 he is working as a labourer. In 1903, Thomas and Sarah Ann, both old age pensioners, are living at Retreat Rd, Bendigo with their daughter, Elizabeth Ann and her hushand, John HARPER.
While the family name is listed as BLANDTHORN on marriage and birth certificates, on various electoral rolls, the name is listed as BLANTHORN. Another variation is BLANDTHORNE.
Sarah Ann MUNRO was born in London, England around 1837. I have no details on her parents names. Their marriage certificate is in very bad condition. In 1903, Sarah is listed in the electoral roll as an Old Age Pensioner living at Retreat Road, Bendigo, Vic, Australia. From 1909 to her death in 1915, she is living at Somerville St, Bendigo, Vic, Australia (with one of her children), with her occupation listed as home duties. On one sons birth certificate, her name is also spelt MUNROE.
The children of Thomas BLANDTHORN and Sarah Ann MUNRO are:
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