Watson and Canet Family History Site


Watson Family





George Douglas WATSON
b. 29 Mar 1820 - d. 3 Jan 1863



George Cumming WATSON
b. 20 Mar 1857 - d. 20 Sep 1937






b. 1821 - d. 3 Sep 1891


George Douglas WATSON
b. 29 Nov 1885 - d. 6 Feb 1933







b. 1828 - d. 14 May 1884



Lucy Maria HUGHES
b. Jul 1863 - d. 7 Aug 1895





Sarah Ann DAVIS
b. 12 Dec 1827 - d. 17 Jun 1903

Charles Thomas WATSON
b. 28 Jan 1918 - d. 1991








Henry James HARPER
b. 1812 - d. 17 Jan 1877



b. 17 Nov 1856 - d. 13 Mar 1927






Ellen BRAY
b. 1829 - 26 Sep 1888


Lorette Mabel HARPER
b. 30 Jul 1888 - d. 11 Jul 1923







Thomas George BLANDTHORN
b. abt. 1830 - d. 1907



Elizabeth Ann BLANDTHORN
b. 12 Jun 1860 - d. 12 Oct 1904






Sarah Ann MUNRO
b. abt. 1837 - d.






Charles Thomas WATSON (1918 - 1991)

Charles Thomas Watson in the ArmyCharles 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.





Up Here in Bougainville

sung to the tune of Lili Marlene


Fighting in the jungle, underneath the trees
Living deep in the foxholes, ridden with disease
Day after day it's just the same, a life that's tame, in heat & rain
For home and hearts are yearning, up here in Bougainville.


Shells are coming over, time for us to pray
May the Good Lord spare us to see another day
Pass out the ammo & grenades, before life fades, come on comrades
We're fighting for our freedom, up here in Bougainville.


Hold your rifle steady, take perfect aim
Think of home & mother & live up to your name
Spray all the jungle far & wide, for those who died & turned the tide.
When things looked dark & gloomy, up here in Bougainville.


Black upon our faces, with the charcoal on
Branches from the firm trees & we are all adorned
Then thru the jungle, creeping quiet & stamping light to look for fight
Where lead is always waiting on trails on Bougainville


Here's another coming, I hope it isn't mine
Keep your head down, soldiers there fury long the line
And when its passed far over head, and your not dead, instead you live
To tell the tale of fortune you've had on Bougainville


A letter from my sweetheart only yesterday
She said she missed me madly since I have been away
Oh if she only knew how much I miss her touch and long to clutch
Her to my breast and kiss her - But I'm on Bougainville


What a place to live in what a place to die
Buin road's a hot spot for you and you and I
Show us the road that leads to home across the foam to no more roam
When things are quiet and peaceful up here on Bougainville.


Image of Letter from New Britain c. 1945

Letter Containing Song Lyrics, Sent from New Britain During World War Two

George Douglas WATSON (1885 - 1933)

George Douglas WatsonGeorge 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 (1888 - 1923)

Lorette Mabel HarperLorette 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 (1857 - 1937)


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 (1863 - 1895)

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 (1856 - 1927)

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:

  • Rose May HARPER, b. 08 Oct 1881, Bendigo, Vic, Australia; d. 28 Jun 1956.
  • John Henry HARPER, b. 20 Jun 1883; d. 08 Feb 1928; m. Mary Anne CHESTER; b. 18 Mar 1885; d. 05 Oct 1970.
  • James Thomas HARPER, b. 25 Jul 1885; d. Jul 1949; m. Florence E SCOTT; b. 19 Sep 1896; d. 18 Sep 1978.
  • Lorette Mabel HARPER, b. 30 Jul 1888, Inglewood, Vic, Australia; d. 11 Jul 1923, Bendigo, Vic, Australia.
  • Charles HARPER, b. 08 May 1891; d. 04 Feb 1945; m. Maude ROWE; b. 31 Oct 1890; d. 7 Jul 1947.
  • Samuel Rueben HARPER, b. 11 Mar 1893; d. 30 Mar 1956; m. (1) MCELMENNEY; b. 1900; m. (2) HOLLAND; b. 1891; d. 1918.
  • Daisy Pearl HARPER, b. 31 Oct 1895; d. 12 Oct 1962; m. David S HALL; b. 06 May 1895; d. 01 Jul 1973.
  • William Arthur HARPER, b. 10 Mar 1898; d. 07 Dec 1973; m. (1) Veronica A MOORE; b. 1912; d. 1947; m. (2) Nancy F FRANCIS; b. 1898; d. 1928.
  • Stanley Owen HARPER, b. 07 Oct 1900.
  • Lillian Maud HARPER, b. 20 Nov 1903; d. 23 Jan 1985; m. John L HILL; b. 12 Sep 1905; d. 05 Jun 1968.

Elizabeth Ann BLANDTHORN (1860 - 1904)

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 (1820 - 1863)

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 (1821 - 1891)

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

" 7 September 1891. Watson. On the 3rd September at her late residence,Clyde Cottage,Williamson Street, Anna Cumming Watson, aged 72, after a long and painful illness."


Children of George Douglas WATSON and Anna CUMMING are:

  • Thomas WATSON, born 1853.
  • George Douglas WATSON, born 1855 in Emerald Hill, Vic, Australia; died 1855.
  • George Cumming WATSON, born 20 Mar 1857 in Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; died 20 Sep 1937 in Bendigo, Vic, Australia; married Lucy Maria HUGHES 10 Mar 1885 in Sandhurst, Vic, Australia.
  • Anna WATSON, born 1859 in Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; died 1891.

John HUGHES (1828 - 1884)

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 (1827 - 1903)

Sarah Ann Davis 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:

  • Emma Jane HUGHES, b. 1854, Richmond, Vic, Australia; d. 26 Feb 1906, Melbourne, Vic, Australia.
  • George HUGHES, b. 1855, Richmond, Vic, Australia; d. 18 Oct 1859, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia.
  • John Henry HUGHES, b. 1857, Bendigo, Vic, Australia; d. 06 Feb 1934, Melbourne, Vic, Australia.
  • Lucy HUGHES, b. 1858, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 26 Aug 1858, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia.
  • Louisa HUGHES, b. 1859; d. 1861, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia.
  • Arthur William HUGHES, b. 1861, Bendigo, Vic, Australia; d. 04 Oct 1913, Hawthorn, Vic, Australia.
  • Lucy Maria HUGHES, b. Jul 1863, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 07 Aug 1895, Bendigo, Vic, Australia.
  • George Septimus HUGHES, b. 1865, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 05 Mar 1866, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia.
  • Alice Charlotte HUGHES, b. 1868, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 1888, Melbourne, Vic, Australia.
  • Minnie May HUGHES, b. 1870, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 1910, Camberwell, Vic, Australia.

Henry James HARPER (1812 - 1877)

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.



  • William HARPER, b. 1835.
  • Charlotte HARPER, b. 1837; d. 06 Jun 1909; m. GEORGE BELL; b. 1829; d. 1890.
  • Maryann HARPER, b. 1839; d. 1895; m. JOHN CLARK; b. 1830.
  • Sarah HARPER, b. 06 Jun 1845, Auckland, New Zealand; d. 09 Jun 1845, Auckland, New Zealand.

Ellen BRAY (1829 - 1888)

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:

  • James Henry HARPER, b. 25 Jan 1849; d. 10 Jun 1917; m. MARYANN JOHNSON; b. 12 Jul 1839; d. 1950.
  • Angelina HARPER, b. 18 Dec 1851, Adelaide, SA, Australia; d. 10 Mar 1927, Melbourne, Vic, Australia.
  • Elizabeth Ellen HARPER, b. 29 Jan 1854; d. 24 Jul 1937; m. HARRY ELLISON; b. 12 Jun 1839; d. 27 Oct 1906.
  • John HARPER, b. 17 Nov 1856, Castlemaine, Vic, Australia; d. 13 Mar 1927.
  • Samuel HARPER, b. 22 Mar 1860; d. 10 Jan 1893; m. MARY AGNES FRAWLEY; b. 24 Jun 1854; d. 17 Apr 1932.
  • Sarah HARPER, b. 14 May 1862; d. 03 Aug 1943; m. GEORGE CRAMMOND; b. 09 Sep 1857; d. 06 Jun 1896.
  • Eliza Jane HARPER, b. 23 Aug 1864; d. 05 Jul 1920; m. GEORGE ROBERTS; d. 29 Jan 1929.
  • Harriet MELINDA HARPER, b. 07 May 1867, Newstead, Vic, Australia; d. 1940; m. THOMAS RUTHERFORD PALAMOUNTAIN; b. 14 Dec 1856; d. 16 Jul 1893.
  • Stephen HARPER, b. 17 Jul 1869, Yandoit, Vic, Australia; d. 05 Jul 1924.
  • Thomas HARPER, b. 08 Jul 1871; d. 24 Jan 1942; m. ELLEN SCATINI; b. 01 Feb 1875; d. 17 Dec 1956.
  • Josiah HARPER, b. 08 Jan 1876.

Thomas George BLANDTHORN (1830 - 1907)

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 (1837 - 1915)

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:

  • Thomas BLANDTHORN, b. 1854; d. 1854.
  • Elizabeth Ann BLANDTHORN, b. 1855, Castlemaine, Vic, Australia; d. 1855, Castlemaine, Vic, Australia.
  • Margaret Elizabeth BLANDTHORN, b. 1856, Vic, Australia; d. 1857, Castlemaine, Vic, Australia.
  • Elizabeth Ann BLANDTHORN, b. 12 Jun 1860, Castlemaine, Vic, Australia; d. 12 Oct 1904.
  • Sarah Blanche BLANDTHORN, b. 1866; d. 1950.
  • Margaret BLANDTHORN, b. 1869; d. 1951, Ashburton, Vic, Australia.
  • Amelia BLANDTHORN, b. 1870; d. 1949.
  • William BLANDTHORN, b. 1873, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 1919, Bendigo, Vic, Australia.
  • Mary Ann BLANDTHORN, b. 1875, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 1927.
  • Rosana BLANDTHORN, b. 1878, Sandhurst, Vic, Australia; d. 1945, Bendigo, Vic, Australia; THOMAS JOHN BESSENGER, 1899, Bendigo, Vic, Australia.



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