Monday, December 8, 2014

MIDDLEBROOK REUNION NEWSLETTER OCTOBER 24

Welcome to new subscribers to our family newsletter.
This newsletter now goes out to 70 separate email addresses. Considering we started with just 13 its great to see the word spreading.
The reunion is fast approaching.
Remember to register before the end of November for the current pricing.
Thanks to the many of you who have registered already. We are looking forward to the many of you coming from Australia.

The Death of Henry Cockroft Middlebrook
In a previous newsletter we researched the origin of the middle name of Henry Cockroft Middlebrook. Henry was the youngest child of John and Ellen Middlebrook. He was just a baby  when they arrived in New Zealand,so would have been the child most "at home" here, with no memory of his previous live in Yorkshire.
Sadly though Henry died aged 15.
For interest sake I ordered the death printout pretaining to Henrys death. He died of Phthitis which is another name for Tuberculosis, which coincidentally is the same illness that killed his father John.
While we have no proof to back this up, there is a theory that John's diagnosis of Tuberculosis may have been the reason the family emigrated to New Zealand in the first place as it was often suggested that sufferers move to a better climate.
If this was true then how tragic that the same disease would also kill his youngest child.
WHO IS ALFRED EDWARD  EVERSHED??

While researching the origin of the name of Henry Cockroft Middlebrook I discovered one of our most notable relatives.
Alfred E Evershed of Launceston Tasmania, was nominated twice, in 1935 and 1937 , for a nobel peace prize, based apparently on his writing in support of peace between nations.
His connection to us is complicated but in actuality for most of us he is a second cousin, 2 or 3 times removed which makes the link seem quite close indeed.
To trace the connection we need to go back to John Middlebrook ( the elder) and his siblings one of whom was Elizabeth who lived quite an interesting life it seems.
She married several times ( more on this later) and one of her marriages was to Henry Cockroft who was a cloth trader , and to whom she had 3 children , Ellen Middlebrook Cockroft, William Henry Middlebrook Cockroft, and Sarah Hannah Cockroft.
Unfortunately Henry died when Elizabeth was pregnant with Sarah, and even more tragically her only son William died a few years later aged only 4.
Elizabeth went on to remarry Thomas Sturdy, who bought up her daughters Ellen and Sarah. ( and they also had another daughter together named Elizabeth Sturdy.
Ellen Middlebrook Cockroft married Frederick Evershed and they had 5 children before Frederick also unfortunately died aged only 30.
Sarah married Alfred Evershed who was Frederick's brother. They took Ellen and Frederick's son Bertrand under their care and along with their other 6 children moved from their home in Sussex to Tasmania in the 1880s.
Sarah and Alfreds eldest son was Alfred Edward Evershed .
The following information is from theLaunceston Family Album website

Alfred Edward Evershed

Date of Birth 22 April 1870

Place of Residence Launceston Tasmania Australia

Spouses Name Did not marry

Childrens Names No children

Alfred Edward Evershed was born on 22 Apr 1870 in Littlehampton, Sussex, England, the elder son of Alfred Evershed (1839-1912), timber merchant, and his wife Sarah Hannah Cockcroft (c.1839-1928). He came to Tasmania with his family in Jan 1885. Educated by a governess, he later attended the Launceston Technical School which his father helped to establish. Alfred received a special first award for his carved coat of arms at the Tasmanian Exhibition in 1891-92. He was the secretary of the Literary Society in 1892.

By 1904 AE Evershed & Co. of 65 George Street, Launceston, were the agents for Merryweather's fire engines, hoses and equipment, ice and refrigeration machines and other items. Alfred Edward did not marry and died in Launceston on 31 May 1941 aged 71. He was buried at the Carr Villa Cemetery in Section C 224. His father and younger brother Harold are also in the Launceston Family Album. See The Examiner, 30 Dec 2006, page 31.
If anyone has any spare time and can research the Evershed descendants ( of the other children of Alfred and Sarah)  and let them know of our reunion it would be much appreciated. - We would welcome them !

CLOSE OFF DATE FOR INCLUSION OF PHOTOS FOR THE REUNION BOOK


We are still looking for further photographs to include in the Pictorial book which will be available at the reunion - please email Lauren if you have anything at all which may be of interest. This includes not just photographs from the 19th century but also 20th century photographs pertaining to the Middlebrook family.
If you do not have any way of scanning the photographs we may be able to organise someone to visit .
With Christmas between now and the Reunion date, and the busy season encroaching on our lives we have to set a close off date for any photos to be included in the Pictorial History books to be published for the reunion.
The last date for receipt of copies of photos to be included will be November 30.  If Lauren receives photos and stories before this date we will make every effort to have them included. After this date no guarantees can be made, so please dig out those photos and scan them, and more importantly jot down any stories or facts  you think may be of interest for inclusion in the book

Reunion Registration Details.

We are excited at the number of registrations we have already received. It sounds like there will be quite a few coming from Australia and this is great to hear.  Its very rewarding to think that through the reunion we are connecting so many family members together.
Reunion registration details are below.
Saturday 24th January - Cost $40 for adults, $10 for children 8-13, Free for children 7 and Under
11am - 4pm
The day will begin with check in where you will be issued with name tags denoting which branch of the family you belong to . This will make it easy for you to recognise those who descend from the same branch of the family as yourself.
From 12 noon we will have our photographer taking formal group photos of each branch of the family and of the whole group, along with roaming candid photos throughout the day.
These photographs will be available in an inexpensive  book form, after the reunion. Orders to be taken on the day or beforehand  via a form which will be included in a later newsletter.
Leading up to the reunion we will announce the price of  a photographic family history book which will be available for pre-purchase and pick up at the reunion. The book is well into production now. In order to include as many branches of the family as possible we need your input.  Please send any family stories and or photos to Lauren as soon as possible.
Finger food and tea and coffee will be supplied throughout the day and a cash bar will also be available for those who wish to make use of it.
There will be photographic and informational displays and a large family tree available for viewing.
Saturday primarily though is a mix and mingle event where we can all get to know each other.
Feel free to bring along any photos or copies, along with family mementos you wish to share or display.
Saturday Evening
This is at your leisure. We have suggestions for local restaurants for those interested.
Sunday 25th January - Cost $50 per adult, $45 per child 8-13 and $ 35 per child Under 7  ( Im sure we will be able to accommodate a lesser cost for children under 5 but we are still working on this)
12 noon - 3:00pm
Buffet Luncheon
Sit down lunch with presentations and speakers (descendants) and cutting of the Reunion Cake
REGISTRATION CAN BE MADE ONLINE BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK
Middlebrook Reunion Registration Form
If you prefer to print and fill in a paper form you can download it here
Saturday Evening
This is at your leisure. We have suggestions for local restaurants for those interested.
Sunday 25th January
12 noon - 3:00pm
Buffet Luncheon
Sit down lunch with presentations and speakers (descendants) and cutting of the Reunion Cake
REGISTRATION CAN BE MADE ONLINE BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK
Middlebrook Reunion Registration Form
If you prefer to print and fill in a paper form you can download it here

WHAT HAPPENED TO THE JOHNSON GIRLS?
This photo above is apparently of Ruth and Joyce Johnson, daughters of Mary Lucinda Wishart (Maisie) Johnson (nee Middlebrook) .
We have no descendants of Maisie registered for the reunion.
What we know is :
Maisie had 4 children,
  • Glenda born 1913 and died 1940 apparently in childbirth though I have no confirmed marriage or spouse for her.
  • Ngaire Joyce Johnson, known as Joyce, born 1914- She married Warwick Francis Harvey and had two children that we know of, Warwick Lynton Harvey born 1937, and Jennifer Farrer Harvey born 1945. ( There could have been more children that we are unaware of). We can not find a death date for Joyce.
  • Ruth Johnson who married Wilfred Henry Pool - we dont know of her children at this point, but we know from electoral roll records that  she was living in Fearon Avenue Mt Eden in 1981 and she died in 1997.
  • Raymond Verdon Johnson who died as a baby in 1930
Can anyone shed any light on the whereabouts of any of Maisies descendants?
From Maisies will  ( in 1975) we know she left property in Auckland to Warwick Lynton Harvey who at the time lived in Tauranga, and left a house in Dillon Street Waihi to her daughter Ruth Pool.
She also left property to another Granddaughter- Glenda Arawa Lindsay .
Joyce and Jennifer are not mentioned in the will and I have yet to ascertain where Glenda Arawa Lindsay fits in.
If anyone has further information regarding Maisies descendants we would really appreciate you contacting any of us on the committee.

The Three Faces of Mary Jane Middlebrook- A Bit of Photographic Deception before Photoshop

Mary Jane Middlebrook nee Rea was the wife of Samuel Middlebrook. We dont have many photos of her, in fact at current count we have 2 definites and one possibly!
However what we do have are 3 versions of the one photograph.  I believe most descendants have a copy of the middle version shown here but we were lucky enough to come across  an untouched up version of the original photograph taken by Harry Whitnall Smith ( who we of course know was family, being married to Jane "Cis" Middlebrook, daughter of John and Mary Ann Middlebrook )
The full colourised version of the photograph shows Mary with hazel or brown eyes, and even the middle version she definitely has dark eyes but if you look at the original version its quite clear she had quite light coloured eyes ( probably blue) and certainly her hair shows the unruly curls which were passed down through several of her daughters and still is dominant in some of the current generations of descendants.
Which version of the photograph do you like best? - She certainly looks more elegant and refined in the touched up versions with the shading in teh cheek, lips and eyes, but knowing her life story and her unconventional relationships, I feel more connected to the untouched version which I think shows a bit more of her true spirit.

Middlebrook Family History Website is now Live

The first stage of the Middlebrook Family History Website is now up and viewable.
The Stories page is regularly updated so feel free to check for new images and stories .
Lauren will be adding to the next generation  pages as time permits

Remember to fill in a Family Group Sheet Form here if you havent already

Sunday, December 7, 2014

An Ancestor a Week for 20 weeks–WEEK 20!!- The Sad and Somewhat Mysterious Life of Amelia Fennell

Amelia

The life of Amelia Fennell,(known as Amy), like that of her sister Ellen is shrouded in more than a little  mystery. Born Amelia McRa, the eldest child of Jane Middlebrook and James John McRa, She was born apparently in Tararu Creek Thames in 1869, however as there is no registered birth for her ( nor for her sister Nellie) we only know this , as it is what is stated on her marriage certificate. Even then,it may not be factual, but it is the truth as she had been told.
We know nothing of Amy’s childhood. She first appears in written family history at around age 19 in 1887, when her uncle Welsh McRa writes to Amy’s mother Jane,  suggesting that her current working position with another Uncle and Aunt is possibly not working out to Amy’s best interest, and he removes her from there and returns her to her mother in Opua. (Though it isnt completely clear, it appears Amy’s sister Ellen (Nellie) may also have been with her at the time.
It sems Amy stays in Opua as she appears there in the 1893, and 1896 electoral rolls as a Domestic Servant, but it isnt until the 2nd October 1902, aged around 35 that she married Patrick Fennell,  in Russell Bay of Islands . It seems a strange match. Patrick, a widower, is aged 73 at the time of their marriage. A huge age gap by any standards.
Amy and Patrick remain living in Opua. They went on to have two children, Nicholas John Charles Fennell (known as Charlie) born 1905 (Amy would have been 39 and Patrick 76) and seven years later George Duncan Fitzroy Fennell ( at this point Amy would have been aged 43 and Patrick a venerable 83 year old!!)   Good things were not to come for the Fennell family.

Northern Advocate 4th February 1916
THE OLD MEN'S HOME.
SHOULD CANCER PATIENTS BE RECEIVED THERE?
CASE OF MR P. FENNELL.
In Wednesday's "Advocate" we published some comments made by Inspector Skynner to the Bay of Islands Hospital Board.-The report dealt with the case of an old man, Mr P. Fennell, of Opua. Fennell was a cancer patient and Inspector Skynner complained that he had been driven from pillar to post. Describing the case the inspector continued:—"First he was taken to the Old Men's Home at Whangarei; thence to the Knox Home for Incurables at East Tamaki, and at the instance of the trustees of that institution back to his home a Opua. I consider it my duty to point out in the strongest language. I possibly can that I consider the whole position a most disgraceful one, and if such institutions,  as the Costley Home, the Knox Home for Incurables, and the Old Men's Home at Whangarei will not provide a resting place for our''aged poor”, whose days are probably numbered through suffering from some incurable disease, I consider it is your Board's duty to suffering humanity to bring the position under the notice of the Hon. Minister for Public Health."
Northern Advocate , 8 May 1917, Page 2
In comment on the lack of an essential provision the "Luminary" has the following:—"There is no institution North of Auckland set apart for the care and treatment of persons suffering from incurable diseases, and the Knox Home for Incurables, in Auckland, refuses to receive patients from this district. These facts were brought out at the meeting of the Hospital Board on Friday, owing to a letter received from the house manager of the Auckland hospital asking the board what it was going to do with Mrs Fennell, a resident of Opus, Bay of'-Islands, now lying in the Auckland institution suffering from an incurable disease. It will be remembered that in 1915 Mr Fennell, of Opua, was found to be suffering from cancer. He was 84 years of age and was in a deplorable condition with the disease. The poor old man was sent to the Old Men's Home, Whangarei, which refused to keep him, so the Board sent him to the Knox Home for incurables, Tamaki, Auckland; but even there he was not allowed to rest and was packed back to Opua. The local Board then placed him in a shanty in the hospital grounds, where he soon after died. Now his wife is afflicted with the same disease, and it looks as if the poor woman is to be driven from pillar to post like her dead husband was.

Amy died on May 4th 1917, and it seems the 2 boys, Charlie aged 12 and George aged just 5 were split up. George was bought up by his maternal uncle, John Roderick McRae who was a bootmaker in Paptoetoe. George went on eventually to take on the same trade.  Charlie though, aged 12 went elsewhere. By 1923 he was in Awakeri, Bay of Plenty. He remained in the Bay of Plenty area for the rest of his life.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

An Ancestor a week for 20 weeks–Week 19–Farrer Middlebrook – Religion by Design

 

farrermiddlebrook

Narrated by John Farrer Middlebrook , Sydney NSW Australia
November 2014

My father was an Anglican clergyman for all the time I knew him and our family life was in many ways shaped by the needs of each Parish he'd been appointed to. After leaving St. John's College at Remuera, the theological training college, and being ordained, first deacon then priest, he assisted at Taumarunui, Gate Pa, Tauranga, and at St. Matthews, Masterton where he met and married my Mother (Eleanor Hope Dillon).  Dad was sent as Vicar to Ormondville, a small country town and a farming and railway centre, and as WW2  loomed they set up house in a large, draughty Victorian vicarage on a hillside, with a main rail line just across the road, and began a family.
In 1945 we moved to Gisborne, then Ruatoria, on the East Coast, from 1952 until 1957 when we moved to New Plymouth. Dad's last move took him back to Gisborne again where he remained until his passing on 21st Mar. 1968, just a few months before he would have retired.

Dad was born in Opua on 28th Oct. 1903, to a widowed schoolteacher, Julia Sullivan, who already had five children, and her new husband, James Middlebrook, a carpenter, recently divorced and without children, who had lived some seven years in the town.

He left Auckland Grammar school with a passion for drawing and design and perhaps in the early 1920's was articled to Griersons, Architects, or an associated firm, and began study at Auckland University School of Architecture. He described some of his work at the architects, who were designing the Auckland War Memorial Museum, where he prepared both full-scale drawings of the large WWI battle names to be carved into the Portland-stone frieze of the Museum and also the large watercolour drawings of the proposed fa├žade. He had become skilled in classic Roman lettering and was able to produce tracings, for transfer to the stone, with the exact lines needed by the stonemason to cut the complex angles and curves within each letter and for it's spacing from the next. The work stands perfect to this day and in contrast  to the similar WWII battle names on the later section.   Other commissions he worked on included the old Auckland Power Board building near the waterfront, now gone I think, the Elephant House at the Wellington Zoo, the Wintergarden glasshouses in the Domain and others.  It is interesting that his younger brother, Russell Middlebrook, made the models from which the classic oxidised-bronze wreaths and swags that ornament the Museum upper floor were cast. Those fulfilling times were not to last; the Museum had hardly been finished when the Great Depression began to bite.  All public works ceased, businesses failed and work was not to be had.  We think that his mother, Julia, may have had Russell, Eva, Perhaps Bart, as well as Dad, still living at home in Burch St, Mt. Albert. Her husband, James, had died in 1930 and Dad had lost his job when his employer closed the office..
Dad had experience of the Relief Work scheme offered by the Government; he told me of workers, at railway yards, moving great piles of coal or ballast metal with shovels and wheelbarrows and then moving it all back again!  He saw much poverty around;  single mothers with children, and without work and no means to buy food, forced to seek charity; the elderly and the disabled the same.  The effect of his experiences  in the early 1930's convinced him of his calling to the Ministry and his entering St. John's College.


For all the years I remember, he would begin his day at about 5am, or earlier, taking tea and toast into his study. His many books, both theological and architectural, were kept there along with the large table he used for his drawing board and T-square. Sometimes he'd be working on his sermon for the coming Sunday, but mostly drawing and designing.  He designed churches at Waitara, Te Puia,  Makaraka, Ruatoria and a girl's college chapel, among others. Quite often he was called on, by a church somewhere, to supply  a drawing for a fitting or ornament; sometimes a banner or candlesticks or pews. Many of his drawings survive and show the great skills he had.

He was popular with the parishioners and spent much of the week in visiting; no one was missed either at home or in hospital.  It was often mentioned to me how good a listener he was, and by others how he never brought religion into a conversation unless asked about something.
Being a friend was often more help than being a Pastor.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Ancestor of the Week–Week 18–Samuel Middlebrook–A True Pioneer

samuelmiddlebrookpioneer

 

From the Bay of Plenty Times 1945 :


MR SAMUEL MIDDLEBROOK
____________________________________

PLAYED MANY PARTS
___________________________________

PIONEER IN THE DISTRICT
Veteran of the Maori War: one who played a full part in the pioneering settlement in New Zealand in the latter part of the last century,and a well-known and affectionately regarded identity in these parts, Mr Samuel Middlebrook,of Waihi died in the Waihi Hospital last Saturday. He was 91 years of age.

Mr Middlebrook was born in Leeds, Yorkshire in the year 1854 journeying to New Zealand with his family in the ship Shalimar in 1861. At the age of 18 he left Auckland for Tauranga to join the Survey Department , and he resided there for four years. He joined the cavalry in the time of the Maori War and served with that unit until it disbanded. Mr Middlebrook was on the staff of the Survey Department which was under the control of Captain A.C.Turner, and was engaged in surveys inland as far as Taupo. In 1874 he acted as a guide for the late Mr George Vesey Stewart when the latter was selected to inspect the lands for the Katikati settlers. Mr Middlebrook resided at Katikati until six or seven years ago and for about 16 years before that he made his home on his launch Finella

Mr Arthur J Gray, in his book “An Ulster Plantation: relates that when Mr George Vesey Stewart came to Tauranga he inspected all the Government lands in the neighbourhood, the Survey Office putting at his disposal a young man, Mr Samuel Middlebrook.. One Morning they rode out of Tauranga towards the northern end of the harbour and in the late afternoon after twenty miles of hard ringing through trackless swamps and hills, they reached the Elongate River.  This was the southern boundary of the Katikati Block, part of the area confiscated from the Maoris after the Bay of Plenty war. As Vesey Stewart looked across the rolling stretches of fern country watered by six rivers, with the forest mountains on his left and glimpses of the blue see on his right he knew that his search was over.  After careful inspection of three days he and Mr Middlebrook returned. Mr Vesey Stewart then went to Auckland and made an official application for 10,000 acres of the Katikati block. The agreement regarding the acquisition of the land was concluded on June 24 1874

VERSATILE MAN
Mr Middlebrook was a very versatile man, who played many important parts in the early days of Katikati. He was a brilliant Maori linguist, a great sportsman; musical and a great lover of little children. He was one of the foundation members of the Katikati Royal Orange Lodge and to the end was a most keen member.
His wife Mary Jane, pre-deceased him by six years. Mr Middlebrook is survived by one son and four daughters: Mrs R.J. Harris of Waihi; Mrs P. Goodwin of Auckland: Mr Samuel Robert Middlebrook of Hamilton; Mrs Edwards of Waihi and Mrs B Gurk of Waihi. The funeral which left St Johns Anglican Church was attended by a large gathering of Tauranga, Katikati and Waihi mourners. Mr Middlebrook, being an old soldier was buried with military honours in the soldiers portion of the Waihi cemetery . The Rev. E.L.B. Gribble officiated both in the church and at the graveside

This article includes a few inaccuracies mostly based on Samuel’s age. It was commonly thought Samuel was in his 90s, but in actuality he was only 89 when he died. His birth year was 1856 not 1854 and his family arrived in New Zealand in December 1862 not 1861.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

An Ancestor a week for 20 weeks– number 17- Charles Samuel Middlebrook

CharlesSamuelMiddlebrook

Charles Samuel ( Known as Sam) Middlebrook was the 6th child and second son of John and Mary Ann Middlebrook..
Like is father, and his older brother John Thompson Middlebrook, he took up the trade of butcher, helping in the family business in Te Awamutu.
At 28 years old he married Catherine Isabella Murtagh .
While living in Te Awamutu Sam and Catherine had 4 children:  Eldest child was John Walter Middlebrook , born in 1913. 3  years later Emma Jane was born in 1916 , followed by Olive Mary in 1917 and finally in 1918 their final child Zoe Mabel completed their family.  Sam  was listed in the WW1 reserves but unlike  his younger brothers was never called up to fight. He was classified “D” due to the fact that he had ( at the time) 3 children. This may have had a bearing toward the fact that he was never called up to fight .
Sam lived and worked for the family business in Te Awamutu  until the early 1930s when he moved his family to Raglan and , following the family tradition, ran his own butchers shop, assisted by his son John Walter.

Sam and Katie retired to South Auckland before 1950, and Sam died aged 75 in 1960, and Katie died in 1963.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Children of Samuel and Mary Jane Middlebrook

 

ChildrenofSamuelandMaryJane1

 

The Middlebrook Family of Katikati, headed by Samuel and Mary Jane (nee Rea) Middlebrook consisted of 6 children . First born in 1884 was son John Stewart Middlebrook, named after both his grandfathers and known as Johnnie . In 1886 Margaret Farrer Middlebrook was born. Her first name after her maternal grandmother, and middle name taken from the family name of her paternal grandmother.. Margaret was known often as Rita while at school and later was known as Dot. Ellen Winifred was born in 1887, named after her paternal grandmother and great grandmother,  though the origin of her second name Winifred is not known. Ellen was known commonly as Ellie. In 1890 , another son Samuel Robert ( named for his father, and paternal great grandfather. He was commonly known as Bertie or Bert. 

After a gap of  6 years  another daughter was born, though family legend has it that Mary Lousinda Middlebrook was not in fact the daughter of Samuel, but of local blacksmith John Grey. Samuel’s name however appears on the birth certificate as the father.
Last born in 1898, was Elizabeth Alice, named after her maternal aunt and known for most of her life as Bess.

John Stewart was the only sibling to not reach old age. His occupation was one of blacksmith, and he married at age 27, having 3 sons, one of whom died as a baby. Unfortunately when his youngest son was only 3 years old, John died leaving his wife to fend for herself and her children. She found a job as a housekeeper but had to move out of the area and could only take one child, and so the family was split up as the eldest son Leslie was bought up in a Salvation Army home until he was nearly 12 .

Mary Jane’s youngest sister, Margaret Matilda Rea was 16 years her younger. It appears that she lived with Samuel and Mary Jane and was bought up as a sister to the girls rather than an aunt. Margaret ( known as Cis ) was bridesmaid to Margaret, and both Margaret and Ellen were bridesmaids to her at first marriage to William Birkett in 1905.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Middlebrook Reunion Newsletter dated September 29th

 

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Middlebrook Family History and the Cockroft Connection

by Lauren Bavin
We've focused a lot on the lives and descendants of the 6 Middlebrook children who arrived in New Zealand with their parents  survived to adulthood .
The youngest child Henry Cockroft  Middlebrook unfortunately died aged 15 on 25th September 1876 and is buried in the Wesleyan Cemetery in Symonds Street Auckland.

I had wondered for some time on the origin of Henrys middle name Cockroft.
It really sounded much like a surname but I couldnt initially find any Cockrofts in the family.
The trail to finding the origin was a tricky one, fraught with transcription errors and changes of location , but I can now confirm that indeed Henry Cockroft Middlebrook was named after a deceased Uncle.
To trace the name we need to go back to Samuel Middlebrook ( 1784-1846) the father of John Middlebrook who emigrated to NZ.
Samuel had 5 children
Mary Ann Middlebrook 1804
Elizabeth 1807
Fanny 1809
John 1812
Thomas 1815
In Samuels Will he left his estate in its entirety to John on the proviso he made the following paments
One Hundred Pounds to Samuels daughter Elizabeth, wife of Thomas Sturdy; One Hundred Pounds to Samuels daughter  Fanny, wife of Philip Smith; and Five pounds to Samuel's son Thomas . ( Mary Ann was not mentioned in the will  but we know she had married Christopher Wharton.
On finding the names of the husbands of Elizabeth and Fanny I then went to look for those marriages.
Fanny's marriage was easy to find in August 1841

However I could find no marriage between an Elizabeth Middlebrook and a Thomas Sturdy.
So instead of searching for Elizabeth Middlebrook I widened the search to Thomas Sturdy and all women named Elizabeth and there was our first clue..
On September 4 1843 there was a marriage between Thomas Sturdy and Elizabeth Cockroft

Gender:
Female

Father's Name:
Samuel Middlebrook

Spouse's Name:
Thomas Sturdy

Spouse's Father's Name:
William Sturdy

Marriage Date:
4 Sep 1843

Marriage Place:
York, Yorkshire, England

At last - there was our Cockroft connection.-
I then looked for Elizabeth and Thomas Sturdy in the 1851 census, however nothing initally came up.
I finally found them in the 1861 Census living at 73 Church Place W, Islington, Middlesex. Thomas was a Linen Draper and he was living with Elizabeth and their daughter Elizabeth Sturdy aged 16 and Thomas's step daughter Ellen Cockroft.
Ellen proved to be the final link in the puzzle to the Cockroft name.
Her baptism records dated 24th July 1834 list the following

Name:
Ellen Middlebrook Cockroft

Gender:
Female

Baptism Date:
24 Jul 1834

Baptism Place:
Saint Peter,Leeds,York,England

Father:
Henry Cockroft

Mother:
Elizabeth

At last - the proof- Henry Cockroft Middlebrook was named after his Uncle Henry Cockroft, first husband of his aunt Elizabeth.
I have yet to find a death for Henry, nor can I find any record of the original marriage but will keep looking.
After I had found Elizabeth and Thomas in 1861 I then tracked back in time to find them in 1851 to see if there were any other Cockroft children.
I finally found them at 13 Trafalgar Street Brighton. They hadn't originally shown up in a search as they had been mistranscribed as Thomas and Elizabeth Slindy.
Thomas was working as a Linen Draper assisted by family. Stepdaughter Ellen is listed as assiting in the family business.
Living with Thomas and Elizabeth at the time were Ellen Cockroft and another daughter Sarah Hannah Cockroft.
From there I went looking for Elizabeth with Ellen and Sarah in the 1841 census .
I finally found them living in a Boarding School in Low Harrogate . I assume Elizabeth was working as a servant there and they accommodated the girls for her.
Interestingly I briefly traced Ellen Middlebrook Cockrofts later life. It seemed her stepfather Thomas Sturdy had a great influence on her life as she continued in the Linen industry becoming an Embroidress.
She married Frederick Evershed who was also a Draper and Silk Miller, and had 4 children. ( in 1871 her mother Elizabeth Sturdy was living with them in Brighton)
Unfortunately Frederick died in 1872 and to support her children Ellen continued as an Embroidress ,by 1881 having her own business, and was assisted by her daughter Ellen Lucas Evershed.
At the time of the 1881census  she is visiting a family in London so there is little information on her family or occupation, however in 1891 she is listed as the Secretary of the Exhibition of Embroidery , and in 1901 and 1911 she is listed as an embroidress and employing staff in London.
Ellen Middlebrook Evershed died in March 1913.

Benjamin Farrar Hardy was a son of Elizabeth ( nee Midlebrook) and George Douglas Hardy.

Benjamin Farrer Hardy began his career in the fashion industry when he joined the company Rushbrook and Company of Auckland, before moving on to other draperies in Auckland where he gained further experience. Subsequently, in 1902 he was appointed manager of the Melbourne Clothing Company of Stratford .
By 1911 Ben Hardy had his own business in Picton Street Howick, where he remained until 1915 at which point he made a name for himself as a Master Draper in Thames.
Electoral roll records indicate that by 1928 he had moved back to Auckland and was living in  Oaklands Road Mt Eden and is still listed as a draper.
Ben Hardy married Martha Neilie in 1899 and they had two children, Norma Madeleine Middlebrook Hardy, ( 1905-1997) and Douglas Nelson Hardy (1905-1992)

The premises on the corner of Pollen and Cochrane Streets now occupied by Mr Ben. Hardy, the enterprising draper, and formally known as Martin's corner, have undergone wonderful changes in the course of a few months. Where formerly stood the old established business of Mr George Martin, has now arisen one of the most up-to-date emporiums in the town, and here Mr Hardy has set up business under modern conditions.

With a large and new building at his disposal and a stock that for excellence would be hard to beat, Mr Hardy has made a choice Xmas display. Everything is new, and consequently fashion followers can obtain all that they require in dress and accessories. The showroom contains some ravishing millinery samples, the newest shades and shapes being exhibited. Madame Fashion has so many vagaries that it is difficult to keep pace with her whims, but Mr Hardy understands what his Thames clients wants, and buys accordingly. Here lies the secret of his success since starting gin business in this town( and his numerous customers recognise his efforts to please them ); the enterprising draper has secured an exclusive array of chic graceful  millinery, and his ready to wear costumes are the last word in fashion. In all the leading shades and materials, they are perfectly sweet confections, and we would recommend the race goer in search for an original frock to call and inspect the splendid display at Hardy's. In charming military cut with pleated basques, mess coat style and flared skirts, they are le dernier cri . The whisps of lacy blouses: the effective dress trimmings, and the smart little muslin and voile frocks made in a variety of styles, including the popular pinafore design stamp Hardy's stock as thoroughly representative of what is being work in the fashion centres. In hosiery, gloves, stockings, and sunshades, the shop is replete, also with dainty dress fabrics. There are the usual accompaniments for the ladies in toilet accessories, etc, in which the feminine mind delights. Hardy's is an admirable place for the Xmas shopper and the enterprising proprietor is thoroughly deserving of the increasing patronage which is offerings are bringing  him. He has installed one of the latest electric cash registers in the district, it being worked with a minimum of waiting for the customer, and combines efficiency of service with wonderful capabilities for silently recording the sales. It is a striking innovation and is built on an elaborate scale. Mr Hardy is indeed catering for public stores in Thames. His Xmas stock is a fine one.

Thames Star 22nd December 1915

CLOSE OFF DATE FOR INCLUSION OF PHOTOS FOR THE REUNION BOOK


We are still looking for further photographs to include in the Pictorial book which will be available at the reunion - please email Lauren if you have anything at all which may be of interest. This includes not just photographs from the 19th century but also 20th century photographs pertaining to the Middlebrook family.
If you do not have any way of scanning the photographs we may be able to organise someone to visit .
With Christmas between now and the Reunion date, and the busy season encroaching on our lives we have to set a close off date for any photos to be included in the Pictorial History books to be published for the reunion.
The last date for receipt of copies of photos to be included will be November 30.  If Lauren receives photos and stories before this date we will make every effort to have them included. After this date no guarantees can be made, so please dig out those photos and scan them, and more importantly jot down any stories or facts  you think may be of interest for inclusion in the book

WHO AM I?
This photo came from Max Bercich and was probably from the collection his mother inherited from Olive Winks( nee Middlebrook) .
The photo looks as if it could be the same child - this photo was from the Te Awamutu Museum and was credited as Joyce Middlebrook. To our knowledge there was no Joyce Middlebrook but there was a Joyce Stonex.
Joyce Ada Stonex was born in 1921 and was the youngest daughter of Frederick and Eleanor ( nee Middlebrook) Stonex. Could this be Joyce Stonex??

Reunion Registration Details.

We are excited at the number of registrations we have already received. It sounds like there will be quite a few coming from Australia and this is great to hear.  Its very rewarding to think that through the reunion we are connecting so many family members together.
Reunion registration details are below.
Saturday 24th January - Cost $40 for adults, $10 for children 8-13, Free for children 7 and Under
11am - 4pm
The day will begin with check in where you will be issued with name tags denoting which branch of the family you belong to . This will make it easy for you to recognise those who descend from the same branch of the family as yourself.
From 12 noon we will have our photographer taking formal group photos of each branch of the family and of the whole group, along with roaming candid photos throughout the day.
These photographs will be available in an inexpensive  book form, after the reunion. Orders to be taken on the day or beforehand  via a form which will be included in a later newsletter.
Leading up to the reunion we will announce the price of  a photographic family history book which will be available for pre-purchase and pick up at the reunion. The book is well into production now. In order to include as many branches of the family as possible we need your input.  Please send any family stories and or photos to Lauren as soon as possible.
Finger food and tea and coffee will be supplied throughout the day and a cash bar will also be available for those who wish to make use of it.
There will be photographic and informational displays and a large family tree available for viewing.
Saturday primarily though is a mix and mingle event where we can all get to know each other.
Feel free to bring along any photos or copies, along with family mementos you wish to share or display.
Saturday Evening
This is at your leisure. We have suggestions for local restaurants for those interested.
Sunday 25th January - Cost $50 per adult, $45 per child 8-13 and $ 35 per child Under 7  ( Im sure we will be able to accommodate a lesser cost for children under 5 but we are still working on this)
12 noon - 3:00pm
Buffet Luncheon
Sit down lunch with presentations and speakers (descendants) and cutting of the Reunion Cake
REGISTRATION CAN BE MADE ONLINE BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK
Middlebrook Reunion Registration Form
If you prefer to print and fill in a paper form you can download it here
Saturday Evening
This is at your leisure. We have suggestions for local restaurants for those interested.
Sunday 25th January
12 noon - 3:00pm
Buffet Luncheon
Sit down lunch with presentations and speakers (descendants) and cutting of the Reunion Cake
REGISTRATION CAN BE MADE ONLINE BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK
Middlebrook Reunion Registration Form
If you prefer to print and fill in a paper form you can download it here

Grave Restoration


The restoration of Ellen  Middlebrook's grave is proceeding nicely - You can see that much of the lichen has been removed and the original white marble is now visible and the engraving is easily readable.
With a little more TLC it should be looking very much better than it was 5 months ago as shown below.

Middlebrook Family History Website is now Live

The first stage of the Middlebrook Family History Website is now up and viewable.
The Stories page is regularly updated so feel free to check for new images and stories .
Lauren will be adding to the next generation  pages as time permits

Remember to fill in a Family Group Sheet Form here if you havent already

Middlebrook Reunion Newsletter dated October 6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome


Welcome to the new subscribers since our last newsletter. We now send this newsletter out to 69 separate email addresses. ( Our first newsletter went out to 13 so it is very exciting to see how the news is spreading.)
The year is racing toward its conclusion.  It is only just over 3 months till the reunion .

LOOKING FOR PHOTOS OF THE FOLLOWING PEOPLE


The pictorial books planned for the reunion will include photos of as many descendants as we can possibly find.
For some we understand that there may be no photos in existence but it would be  a real pity for people to be missing if there are photos available
Here is a list of names for whom we dont have a photograph
  • John Middlebrook Sr - This is probably the most wished for photograph of all. We have a few photos of Ellen but nothing of John unfortunately
  • Henry Cockroft Middlebrook   We have photos of the other children as teenagers. Henry died aged 15, but we havent found any photo of him as yet
  • Amy McRa(e) and her husband Patrick Fennell Amy and Patrick died leaving their 2 sons orphans. To date no photographs of Amy or Patrick have been found  ( Edit – we now have 3 photos of Amelia!!)
  • Nellie McRa(e) Nellie is a bit of a mystery woman. We have no birth registration, nor death registration for her, but rumour has it she went to Fiji with her brother Robert Irwin McRae and died there.
  • Sara, Mary Ellen, and Jack ( John Farrer) Middlebrook we have no photos of the 3 children of Benjamin Middlebrook, though photos of Benjamin and his wife Alice have been located.
  • George Douglas Hardy jr son of Elizabeth and George Douglas Hardy. He was a borough councillor for Devonport so I would assume photos of him and his wife Alice Maud Harradance do exist.  We also would love photos of George and Alices children Dorothy May Hardy, George Douglas Hardy and Bruce Quentin Hardy
  • Robert Farrar Hardy We have no confirmed photos of Robert Hardy to date nor of his children Florence Jessie Hardy, Robert Farrer Arthur Hardy, Charles Douglas Haig Hardy and Lillabud Jean Hardy
  • Frank Leslie Hardy Frank was actually the son of Ellen Hardy but was bought up by Elizabeth and George Douglas Hardy as their son. We have no confirmed potographs of him.
  • Norma Madeleine and Douglas Nelson Hardy These two were the children of Benjamin F Hardy. We also require a photograph of Benjamin's wife Martha Nealie. Norma and Douglas died in the 1990s so I am certain photos exist of them. Martha died in 1967
  • Grace Ivy Cooper and Clifford and Norman Cooper Children of Susan Hardy and James Bailey Cooper - we have a wedding photo which probably includes Clifford and Norman, and possibly Grace  although this is unconfirmed and another photo would allow us to confirm this.
  • Gladys, Reginald and Rita Stonex  These three were the children of Eleanor ( daughter of John) and Frederick Stonex. We do  not appear to have a photo of Frederick Stonex either. ( Edit – we now have photos of Reginald and Rita Thelma Stonex!!)
  • The Furness Family -we do have one  photo of Edna as a child  but we do not have photos of Muriel, Douglas, Arthur, Miriam or Joan Constance Furness - nor do we appear to have a photo of Mary Ann Middlebrook's husband Arthur John Furness
  • The Rickit Family We do have one single photograph apparently of Avis Rickit as a child. We dont appear to have any photographs of Cyril John Rickit or Kenneth Farrer Rickit
  • The Children of Nelson Middlebrook - We do not appear to have photos of the following children of Nelson Middlebrook Nelson John Middlebrook, Brian Farrer Middlebrook

This list is not exhaustive. I am sure there are others that we are missing, or perhaps the photos we have are lacking detail or not confirmed. Please do let us know if you can share photos of any of the names above.  The sooner Lauren gets copies of the photographs the sooner we can get the book printing underway.

MIDDLEBROOK- FAZACKERLEY
The marriage of Eva Rhys, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Middlebrook, of Mount Albert, to Thomas Henry, son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Fazackerley, of Liverpool, was celebrated at St. Luke's Church. The Rev. Beck officiated. The bride, who was given away by her  brother-in-law, Mr. Sydney Runciman, wore a dainty frock of lace over georgette, swathed waistband with diamond buckle, and the simple bodice had a cluster of flowers on one shoulder. Her veil, a family heirloom, was of beautiful Honiton lace. A coronet of orange  blossom was worn round the head. She carried a shower bouquet of tuberoses and asters, tied with silver ribbon. The Misses Runciman looked sweet as bridesmaids, dressed in powder blue georgette with caps of tulle and bandeaux of blue satin. The reception was held at the residence of the bride's parents. The rooms were decorated with bowls of mauve and pink asters and a dainty afternoon tea was served. The bride's mother wore a smart beige ensemble suit with the skirt embroidered in contrasting colours and a hat to tone. Mrs. Sydney Runciman was gowned in mauve georgette with a petal skirt and a black and white velvet flower on the shoulder and black hat. Miss Bartle wore black brocade. Amongst the guests were: Sister Hannah, Sister Agnes ,Mesdames Ruddock, Kaiiand, Potter P. J Bach, Rickard, Wilson, Bowles, S. Hunt, Leahy, the Misses Anne and A. Ruddock, E. Coldicutt, M. Hutton-Whitelaw, Fazackerley and Cock.

Auckland Star 14 March 1929

CLOSE OFF DATE FOR INCLUSION OF PHOTOS FOR THE REUNION BOOK


We are still looking for further photographs to include in the Pictorial book which will be available at the reunion - please email Lauren if you have anything at all which may be of interest. This includes not just photographs from the 19th century but also 20th century photographs pertaining to the Middlebrook family.
If you do not have any way of scanning the photographs we may be able to organise someone to visit .
With Christmas between now and the Reunion date, and the busy season encroaching on our lives we have to set a close off date for any photos to be included in the Pictorial History books to be published for the reunion.
The last date for receipt of copies of photos to be included will be November 30.  If Lauren receives photos and stories before this date we will make every effort to have them included. After this date no guarantees can be made, so please dig out those photos and scan them, and more importantly jot down any stories or facts  you think may be of interest for inclusion in the book

An Exciting Find - Original Land Grant Record

(From Lauren)
I was lucky enough to get some help from some Land Record Experts in how to find original land grants, and as a result of this knowledge I have photographs of both of the original grants to John Middlebrook from the 1860s.
This first Grant of land in Wangarei was assigned to John in January 1866 but not signed off until August of the following year - well after Johns death, and several months after Ellen had sold the land to George Wright and Francis Cork for Eighty Three Pounds.
The transcript of the grant above reads as follows
Victoria, by Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen: To all to whom these Presents shall come, Greeting:
Know ye for the good considerations us thereunto moving We for Us our Heirs and Successors do hereby Grant unto John Middlebrook of Wangarei, Farmer his Heirs and Assigns all that Parcel of land in the province of Auckland in our Colony of New Zealand containing by admeasurement Eighty Three acres more or less siguated in teh Parish of Wangarei in the County of Marsden and being Allotment numbers Ninety One, Ninety Two and Ninety five, Allotment number Ninety one containing twenty one acres Bounded on the North by allotmentnumber ninety one thousand seven hundred and ninety links on the East by a road one hundred links wide, one thousand five hundred links on the South by a road of a width aforesaid. Five hundred and seventy four links and Three hundred and eighty links and on the South west by a road of width aforesaid One Thousand Links and eight hundred Links......... Allotmentnumber Ninety Two containing 33 acres bounded on the north east by the Mangakino River in the East by allotment number ninety three, Two thousand nine hundred and forty links on the south by a road of a width aforesaid seven hundred links and two hundred and forty one links and in the West by a road of width aforesaid. Three thousand seven hundred and thirty three links. Allotment number ninety five containing Twenty nine acres Bounded on the North East by the Mangakino Ribver aforesaid. On the South east by allotment number ninety six Two thousand six hundred links on the South West by a road of width aforesaid. Five hundred and seventy six links and on the West by a Road of width aforesaid Two thousand Tow hundred and seventy links As the same is deliniated on the plan drawn in the margin hereof, with all the Rights and Appurtenances thereto belonging: To hold unto the said John Middlebrook
As from the Fifteenth day of January, One Thousand Eight Hundred and Sixty Six In testimony whereof we have caused this Our Grant to be sealed with the Seal of our Colony of New Zealand
No 7655 Rr S50 Witness our Trusty and Well beloved Sir George Grey K.C.B. Govenor and Commander in Chief in and over the Colony of New Zealand at Wellington this Second Day of August in the year of our Reign; and in the year of Our Lord One thousand eight hundred and Eighty seven
Signed G Grey.

his is the last Will and Testament of me Samuel Middlebrook of Millbridge in the Township of Liversedge in the parish of Birstal in the County of York, Innkeeper. I order and direct all my just Debts, Funeral and Testamentary Expenses and charges of proving and registering this my Will to be paid by my Executor hereinafter appointed out of my personal Estate as soon as convenient after my decease. I give devise and bequeath to my son John Middlebrook all my real and personal Estates whatsoever and wheresoever and of what nature or kind soever the same may be to hold the same unto and to the use of my said son John, his heirs, executors administrators and assigns according to the nature and quality thereof respectively. And I do hereby charge and make liable the property hereinbefore given and devised to my said son John, with the payment of the Legacies or Sums following, that is to say, to my Daughter Elizabeth, the Wife of Thomas Sturdy the Legacy or Sum of One Hundred Pounds. To  my daughter Fanny, the wife of Philip Smith the Legacy of Sum of One Hundred Pounds: both the last mentioned Legacies to be paid at the Expiration of twelve months from my decease, but without interest; and to my Son Thomas Middlebrook the Legacy or Sum of Five Pounds to be paid at my decease.  And I appoint to  my son John Executor of this my Will and do hereby revoke and make void all other Wills by me at anytime heretofore made and do declare this to be my Last Will and Testament. In witness where I have to this my Will the whole whereof is contained on this and the preceding side of one sheet of paper subscribed my name this Twenty Ninth day of May in the Year of our Lord One Thousand eight hundred and forty six.
Signed by the before named Samuel
Middlebrook in the presence of us,
present at the same time who have
hereunto signed our names as
Witnesses thereto in the presence of the
said Samuel Middlebrook and at his
request and in the presence of each other
Joseph Chadwick- Hatter Millbridge
William Sykes Attorney Millbridge

WHO ARE WE??
This photo came from the collection belonging to Valerie Kean, Granddaughter of Charles Samuel Middlebrook.
This is certainly a beautiful wedding and the fact that it is a Whitnall Smith Photograph means it could definitely be the wedding of someone in the family. Does anyone recognise anyone in this photo ? It is probably taken in the early 20th century ( 1905-1915)  based on the fashions

Where can I find more Middlebrook Family History Information??


Have you checked the Middlebrook Reunion Blog recently - Information is posted there regularly that is not necessarily included in the newsletter.
You can find the blog here
Past Issues of the newsletter can be found in the archive here

Reunion Registration Details.

We are excited at the number of registrations we have already received. It sounds like there will be quite a few coming from Australia and this is great to hear.  Its very rewarding to think that through the reunion we are connecting so many family members together.
Reunion registration details are below.
Saturday 24th January - Cost $40 for adults, $10 for children 8-13, Free for children 7 and Under
11am - 4pm
The day will begin with check in where you will be issued with name tags denoting which branch of the family you belong to . This will make it easy for you to recognise those who descend from the same branch of the family as yourself.
From 12 noon we will have our photographer taking formal group photos of each branch of the family and of the whole group, along with roaming candid photos throughout the day.
These photographs will be available in an inexpensive  book form, after the reunion. Orders to be taken on the day or beforehand  via a form which will be included in a later newsletter.
Leading up to the reunion we will announce the price of  a photographic family history book which will be available for pre-purchase and pick up at the reunion. The book is well into production now. In order to include as many branches of the family as possible we need your input.  Please send any family stories and or photos to Lauren as soon as possible.
Finger food and tea and coffee will be supplied throughout the day and a cash bar will also be available for those who wish to make use of it.
There will be photographic and informational displays and a large family tree available for viewing.
Saturday primarily though is a mix and mingle event where we can all get to know each other.
Feel free to bring along any photos or copies, along with family mementos you wish to share or display.
Saturday Evening
This is at your leisure. We have suggestions for local restaurants for those interested.
Sunday 25th January - Cost $50 per adult, $45 per child 8-13 and $ 35 per child Under 7  ( Im sure we will be able to accommodate a lesser cost for children under 5 but we are still working on this)
12 noon - 3:00pm
Buffet Luncheon
Sit down lunch with presentations and speakers (descendants) and cutting of the Reunion Cake
REGISTRATION CAN BE MADE ONLINE BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK
Middlebrook Reunion Registration Form
If you prefer to print and fill in a paper form you can download it here
Saturday Evening
This is at your leisure. We have suggestions for local restaurants for those interested.
Sunday 25th January
12 noon - 3:00pm
Buffet Luncheon
Sit down lunch with presentations and speakers (descendants) and cutting of the Reunion Cake
REGISTRATION CAN BE MADE ONLINE BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK
Middlebrook Reunion Registration Form
If you prefer to print and fill in a paper form you can download it here

Middlebrook Family History Website is now Live

The first stage of the Middlebrook Family History Website is now up and viewable.
The Stories page is regularly updated so feel free to check for new images and stories .
Lauren will be adding to the next generation  pages as time permits

Remember to fill in a Family Group Sheet Form here if you havent already

The Stonex Family- Milk to the Masses – An Ancestor a week for 20 weeks–Number 16

stonex

When Eleanor Middlebrook, eldest daughter of John and Mary Ann Middlebrook married Frederick William Stonex, she would have no idea that her family were to become synonymous with the milk supply of Auckland’s biggest city. Frederick William had 4 brothers, and the elder 3 had formed a partnership in the early years of the 1900s  when they purchased a dairy, and later diversified and developed a milk chilling and delivery business. Frederick had a successful woodturning business but in around 1915 he joined his brothers in the Stonex Brothers Milk Vending Business.
The family firm grew and they purchased many acres of land for dairy farms to supply their factories with milk When brother Joseph Henry was tragically killed in their Newton Factory, Frederick William took over the management .

red and Eleanor had 4 children, Gladys who died as an infant in 1893, Reginald Basil, born 1894, Rita Thelma ( known as Thelma) born in 1896 and Valerie Joyce ( known as Joyce) born in 1921. Both Reg. and Thelma and her husband Norman Till played  important roles in the family business. At the age of 41 he  succeeded his father as manager of the Milk Treatment and Vending company and in 1935 formally incorporated the company. Asa company it was dominant in the Auckland Milk Vending business, with depots i Kingsland, Newton, Pt Chevalier, Remuera and College Hill, and the company remained a strong force into the early 1940s .
Suppliers to Stonex Bros Ltd, including farmers from various localities between Otahuhu and Pukekohe, agree to form a producers cooperative. In 1947 the members of Stonex Milk Producers Cooperative Ltd and the suppliers of the Auckland Milk Company combine to form Auckland Co-operative Milk Producers and about this time the milk processing part of the business was transferred to a newly formed public corporation, the Auckland Milk Treatment Corporation, which was run by Reg Stonex, and brother Percy took over Stonex Bros. Ltd . The family business remained involved in the Auckland Milk scene until 1971 - a total of 65 years

Sunday, November 2, 2014

An Ancestor a week for 20 weeks – Week 15–The Middlebrook–Dillon Wedding

 

Middlebrook-Dillon

Its really great to have a matching newspaper article and photo and this sometimes occurs with weddings.

Im not sure what newspaper this article was clipped from but it describes the wedding of the Rev. Farrer Middlebrook .

The marriage took place at St Matthew’s Church, Masterton on Saturday morning of EleanorHope, only daughter of Mr and Mrs H. Dillon, of Church Street, Masterton, and the Rev. Farrer Middlebrook, of Tauranga, eldest son of the late Mr J.T. Middlebrook and Mrs Middlebrook, of Auckland. The Rev. E.J. Rich officiated at the marriage service which was followed by the Nuptial Eucharist.
The bride, who was escorted by Mr G.L.Thomas, was charmingly attired in a frock of Ivory embossed taffeta modelled on straight lines, the front of the corsage being shirred and the tight sleeves pointed over the hands, the skirt forming a long train. She also work a beautiful embroidered tulle veil lent by a friend and carried a bouquet of roses, carnations and fern.
Attending the bride were Miss Winifred Miller, of Napier, chief bridesmaid, who wore an ankle length frock of golden rust crepe finished with tan velvet, Medici collar and sash and Miss Betty Christie, cousin of the bride, who was attired in a frock of eu de nil made on similar lines. The bridesmaids frocks were finished at the neckline with floral brooches. They wore floral halos to tone, gold shoes and carried bouquets of Iceland poppies, lanchanalia and autumn tints.
Mr Russell Middlebrook of Auckland carried out the duties of best man, and the Rev. T.V. Pearson was groomsman. The ushers were Messrs I.A.McDonald and L.O.Robson, Scout officers.
Scouts and Cubs of the Masterton groups formed a guard of honour at the church.
During the signing of the register Miss Leah Johnston gave an excellent rendering of Tosellis Serenata
the reception was held in the Parish Hall where Mrs Dillon, assisted by Mrs Middlebrook, received the guests. The brides mother work a navy frock with a navy coat and hat and carried an autumn tinted posy. The bridegroom's m other wore a black frock with a lace coat and carried a posy of autumn tints.
The beautiful three-tier cake was decorated by Mrs Gooding
For travelling the bride chose an ensemble of deco blue with grey accessories.
Mr and Mrs Middlebrook’s future home will be at Ormondville.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Middlebrook-Wright Wedding–An Ancestor a week for 20 weeks–number 14

Middlebrook-Wright

A very pretty wedding took place at St Peters Church Katikati on Wednesday April 7th when Miss Dorothy Clarice, second youngest daughter of Mr and the late Mrs W Wright, of Katikati, was married to Mr Samuel Robert Middlebrook youngest son of Mr S. Middlebrook of Waihi. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. Ernest Fletcher, vicar of St Johns Church Waihi, and was attended by a large number of relatives and intimate friends of the bride and bridegroom The bride looked charming in a handsome dress and train of cream charmuse satin with the orthodox veil and orange blossoms and she carried a pretty white bouquet and prayer book. The bridesmaids were Miss A Wright, ( sister of the bride) and Miss B Middlebrook ( sister of the bridegroom. They wore pretty dresses of white embroidered viole, with tulle caps trimmed with ribbon and pearl trimming and carried pretty bouquets . The bride as also attended by her small niece and nephew, Miss Edna and Master George Hepesy. Miss Edna wore a pretty dress of the palest green charmuse satin and carried a basket of flowers while Master George looked very pretty in a suit of saxe blue velvet trimmed with cream lace. Mr Ernest Dale of Wellington, supported the bridegroom as best man, and Mr N Wright of Katikati as groomsman. Miss E Phillips of Waihi presided at the organ and at the conclusion of the ceremony, played the Wedding March. The brides travelling costume was a tailor made champagne serge and a small saxe blue and white velvet hat with blue ospreys . The bride was the recipient of many handsome and useful presents . The Wedding breakfast was held at the residence of the brides father “Glenora” Katikati after which the happy couple left by motor car for Waihi en route for Te Aroha. Mr and Mrs Middlebrook will reside in Waihi.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Cockroft Connection- Week 13 of an Ancestor a Week for 20 weeks


thecockroftconnection

The youngest child of John and Ellen Midlebrook was  Henry Cockroft  Middlebrook unfortunately died aged 15 on 25th September 1876 and is buried in the Wesleyan Cemetery in Symonds Street Auckland. I have long wondered about the origin of his middle name Cockroft which sounds like a Surname.

To trace the name we need to go back to Samuel Middlebrook ( 1784-1846) the father of John Middlebrook who emigrated to NZ.
Samuel had 5 children
Mary Ann Middlebrook 1804
Elizabeth 1807
Fanny 1809
John 1812
Thomas 1815
n Samuels Will he left his estate in its entirety to John on the proviso he made the following payments
One Hundred Pounds to Samuels daughter Elizabeth, wife of Thomas Sturdy; One Hundred Pounds to Samuels daughter  Fanny, wife of Philip Smith; and Five pounds to Samuel's son Thomas . ( Mary Ann was not mentioned in the will  but we know she had married Christopher Wharton.
On finding the names of the husbands of Elizabeth and Fanny I then went to look for those marriages.
Fanny's marriage was easy to find in August 1841.However I could find no marriage between an Elizabeth Middlebrook and a Thomas Sturdy. So instead of searching for Elizabeth Middlebrook I widened the search to Thomas Sturdy and all women named Elizabeth and there was our first clue..
On September 4 1843 there was a marriage between Thomas Sturdy and Elizabeth Cockroft
Gender:     Female
Father's Name:     Samuel Middlebrook
Spouse's Name:     Thomas Sturdy
Spouse's Father's Name:     William Sturdy
Marriage Date:     4 Sep 1843
Marriage Place:     York, Yorkshire, England
At last - there was our Cockroft connection.-
I then looked for Elizabeth and Thomas Sturdy in the 1851 census, however nothing initally came up.
I finally found them in the 1861 Census living at 73 Church Place W, Islington, Middlesex. Thomas was a Linen Draper and he was living with Elizabeth and their daughter Elizabeth Sturdy aged 16 and Thomas's step daughter Ellen Cockroft.
The children in this census  proved to be the final link in the puzzle to the Cockroft name
Her baptism records dated 24th July 1834 list the following
Name:     Ellen Middlebrook Cockroft
Gender:     Female
Baptism Date:     24 Jul 1834
Baptism Place:     Saint Peter,Leeds,York,England
Father:     Henry Cockroft     Mother:     Elizabeth
And finally - the proof- Henry Cockroft Middlebrook was named after his Uncle Henry Cockroft, first husband of his aunt Elizabeth. After I had found Elizabeth and Thomas in 1861 I then tracked back in time to find them in 1851 to see if there were any other Cockroft children. I finally found them at 13 Trafalgar Street Brighton. They hadn't originally shown up in a search as they had been mistranscribed as Thomas and Elizabeth Slindy. Thomas was working as a Linen Draper assisted by family. Stepdaughter Ellen is listed as assisting in the family business. Living with Thomas and Elizabeth at the time were Ellen Cockroft and another daughter Sarah Hannah Cockroft.From there I went looking for Elizabeth with Ellen and Sarah in the 1841 census .I finally found them living in a Boarding School in Low Harrogate . I assume Elizabeth was working as a servant there and they accommodated the girls for her.Further research indicates there was another child of Henry and Elizabeth Cockroft.
Henry William Middlebrook Cockroft was born on July 6 1836 and baptised on January 10 1837 at Leeds.
Despite hours of searching I have been able to find neither  the marriage of Henry and Elizabeth, nor the death of Henry, which apparently occured before the birth of Sarah in  August 1838, as her baptism record lists her father as the Late Henry Cockroft , cloth merchant of Leeds.
A newspaper advertisement for the sale of the “Modern and Valuable Furnishings of the Late Henry Cockroft” dated Twenty Sixth March 1838 indicates he died in the early months of that year.
The assumption could be that in order to support her 2 children and her unborn child, Elizabeth had to sell the contents of her home and then eventually move elsewhere.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Ancestor a week for 20 weeks– week 12 A Blended Family– Sullivan-Middlebrook

 

 

For this weeks Ancestor – I chose to do a family rather than just one ancestor – there are 2 blended families in the Middlebrook clan, and I had previously covered the Simpson family. This time I have done a page on the Sullivan-Middlebrook family

blendedfamilysullivans

When James Thompson Middlebrook married Julia Ann  Sullivan  he inherited a family with 5 children aged from15 year old Frank down to 8 year old Dorothy. Julia was a pupil-teacher at Pearoa School and in 1886  married Arther Walter Sullivan who had recently become the headmaster at the school. Walter died aged only 47in June 1901, leaving Julia a widow with a family of 5 children to support.  It is said she and James met on a “widows cruise”. James however was not a widow but was recently divorced from his first wife Elizabeth who had deserted him some years earlier.   He and Julia married in December 1902 and for some years they resided in Opua where James was employed by New Zealand Railways. In October 1903 they had their first child together- Farrer Middlebrook, followed by twins Nelson Bartle( Bart) and Eva Rhys in 1905. Julia’s last child was Charles Russell (Known as Russell) . Some time after Russell’s birth the family moved to Auckland. Sadly Frank, the eldest son was killed in the Dardanelles on May 19 1915.

For the rest of the children religion features strongly  with Bertha and Phyllis both becoming Nuns (one Catholic, and one Anglican) and Farrer becoming an Anglican Minister) but perhaps the strongest trait in the family is the huge artistic talent.

From Julia , to Eva, Farrer and Russell, each was extremely talented in the fine arts, Eva was a commercial artist at the time of her marriage, Russell becoming a great sculptor- both he and Eva attended Elam Art School. Russell and Farrer are responsible for lettering and sculpture on the Auckland Museum.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

An Ancestor A week for 20 weeks number 11 - Middlebrook-Fazackerley Wedding

Middlebrook-Fazackerley

 

The marriage of Eva Rhys, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Middlebrook, of Mount Albert, to Thomas Henry, son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Fazackerley, of Liverpool, was celebrated at St. Luke's Church. The Rev. Beck officiated. The bride, who was given away by her  brother-in-law, Mr. Sydney Runciman, wore a dainty frock of lace over georgette, swathed waistband with diamond buckle, and the simple bodice had a cluster of flowers on one shoulder. Her veil, a family heirloom, was of beautiful Honiton lace. A coronet of orange  blossom was worn round the head. She carried a shower bouquet of tuberoses and asters, tied with silver ribbon. The Misses Runciman looked sweet as bridesmaids, dressed in powder blue georgette with caps of tulle and bandeaux of blue satin. The reception was held at the residence of the bride's parents. The rooms were decorated with bowls of mauve and pink asters and a dainty afternoon tea was served. The bride's mother wore a smart beige ensemble suit with the skirt embroidered in contrasting colours and a hat to tone. Mrs. Sydney Runciman was gowned in mauve georgette with a petal skirt and a black and white velvet flower on the shoulder and black hat. Miss Bartle wore black brocade. Amongst the guests were: Sister Hannah, Sister Agnes ,Mesdames Ruddock, Kaiiand, Potter P. J Bach, Rickard, Wilson, Bowles, S. Hunt, Leahy, the Misses Anne and A. Ruddock, E. Coldicutt, M. Hutton-Whitelaw, Fazackerley and Cock.

Auckland Star 14 March 1929

Monday, September 29, 2014

The Last Will of Samuel Middlebrook

 

SamuelMiddlebrookWill

 

This is number  10  in my Ancestor a Week for 20 Weeks challenge

I thought it would be nice in this layout to not only show the actual will  and the original funeral card which I found in an album belonging to this mans namesake Samuel Middlebrook ( my GG Grandfather) but include the signature – how cool is that to see the signature of your Great Great Great Great Grandfather!!

 

This is the last Will and Testament of me Samuel Middlebrook of Millbridge in the Township of Liversedge in the parish of Birstal in the County of York, Innkeeper. I order and direct all my just Debts, Funeral and Testamentary Expenses and charges of proving and registering this my Will to be paid by my Executor hereinafter appointed out of my personal Estate as soon as convenient after my decease. I give devise and bequeath to my son John Middlebrook all my real and personal Estates whatsoever and wheresoever and of what nature or kind soever the same may be to hold the same unto and to the use of my said son John, his heirs, executors administrators and assigns according to the nature and quality thereof respectively. And I do hereby charge and make liable the property hereinbefore given and devised to my said son John, with the payment of the Legacies or Sums following, that is to say, to my Daughter Elizabeth, the Wife of Thomas Sturdy the Legacy or Sum of One Hundred Pounds. To  my daughter Fanny, the wife of Philip Smith the Legacy of Sum of One Hundred Pounds: both the last mentioned Legacies to be paid at the Expiration of twelve months from my decease, but without interest; and to my Son Thomas Middlebrook the Legacy or Sum of Five Pounds to be paid at my decease.  And I appoint to  my son John Executor of this my Will and do hereby revoke and make void all other Wills by me at anytime heretofore made and do declare this to be my Last Will and Testament. In witness where I have to this my Will the whole whereof is contained on this and the preceding side of one sheet of paper subscribed my name this Twenty Ninth day of May in the Year of our Lord One Thousand eight hundred and forty six.
Signed by the before named Samuel
Middlebrook in the presence of us,
present at the same time who have
hereunto signed our names as
Witnesses thereto in the presence of the
said Samuel Middlebrook and at his
request and in the presence of each other
Joseph Chadwick- Hatter Millbridge
William Sykes Attorney Millbridge

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

20 Ancestors in 20 Weeks–Number 9–Benjamin Hardy

BenHardy

Benjamin Farrer Hardy began his career in the fashion industry when he joined the company Rushbrook and Company of Auckland, before moving on to other draperies in Auckland where he gained further experience. Subsequently, in 1902 he was appointed manager of the Melbourne Clothing Company of Stratford .
By 1911 Ben Hardy had his own business in Picton Street Howick, where he remained until 1915 at which point he made a name for himself as a Master Draper in Thames.
Electoral roll records indicate that by 1928 he had moved back to Auckland and was living in  Oaklands Road Mt Eden and is still listed as a draper.
Ben Hardy married Martha Neilie in 1899 and they had two children, Norma Madeleine Middlebrook Hardy, ( 1905-1997) and Douglas Nelson Hardy (1905-1992)

The premises on the corner of Pollen and Cochrane Streets now occupied by Mr Ben. Hardy, the enterprising draper, and formally known as Martin's corner, have undergone wonderful changes in the course of a few months. Where formerly stood the old established business of Mr George Martin, has now arisen one of the most up-to-date emporiums in the town, and here Mr Hardy has set up business under modern conditions.

 

With a large and new building at his disposal and a stock that for excellence would be hard to beat, Mr Hardy has made a choice Xmas display. Everything is new, and consequently fashion followers can obtain all that they require in dress and accessories. The showroom contains some ravishing millinery samples, the newest shades and shapes being exhibited. Madame Fashion has so many vagaries that it is difficult to keep pace with her whims, but Mr Hardy understands what his Thames clients wants, and buys accordingly. Here lies the secret of his success since starting gin business in this town( and his numerous customers recognise his efforts to please them ); the enterprising draper has secured an exclusive array of chic graceful  millinery, and his ready to wear costumes are the last word in fashion. In all the leading shades and materials, they are perfectly sweet confections, and we would recommend the race goer in search for an original frock to call and inspect the splendid display at Hardy's. In charming military cut with pleated basques, mess coat style and flared skirts, they are le dernier cri . The whisps of lacy blouses: the effective dress trimmings, and the smart little muslin and voile frocks made in a variety of styles, including the popular pinafore design stamp Hardy's stock as thoroughly representative of what is being work in the fashion centres. In hosiery, gloves, stockings, and sunshades, the shop is replete, also with dainty dress fabrics. There are the usual accompaniments for the ladies in toilet accessories, etc, in which the feminine mind delights. Hardy's is an admirable place for the Xmas shopper and the enterprising proprietor is thoroughly deserving of the increasing patronage which is offerings are bringing  him. He has installed one of the latest electric cash registers in the district, it being worked with a minimum of waiting for the customer, and combines efficiency of service with wonderful capabilities for silently recording the sales. It is a striking innovation and is built on an elaborate scale. Mr Hardy is indeed catering for public stores in Thames. His Xmas stock is a fine one.

Thames Star 22nd December 1915

Monday, September 15, 2014

Middlebrook Reunion Newsletter–August 22

 

Reunion Pricing for Children


We have had some requests as to pricing for children for the reunion. We of course welcome children to the reunion on both days , especially to the Saturday function. Its so important that we pass on our past to the future of our family and though we understand that children may not want to spend  all day amongst  and so we have devised a price for children that we hope will encourage as many as possible to come. It would be especially great to see as many as possible on the Saturday  for the family photographs.
So to that end the price for children 8 - 13 will be $10 for the Saturday
Children 7 and under are free of charge on the Saturday.
On the Sunday the cost will be  $35 for all children 13 and under.
The Registration forms have been amended to include those children's prices

Reunion Registration is Open - Register Early and Save!

Early registration discount ends August 30 ($10 pp discount to 2 day registrations if paid by Aug 30)
The reunion will be held on January 24th and 25th 2015 at Fairway Lodge, Silverfield, Takapuna in Auckland.
We have negotiated what we feel is the best  price and format for our needs and we are able to offer
several options in our aim to have as many attend as possible. We hope to make  this event pleasurable and enjoyable as possible while making it as affordable as we can.
To that end we have formatted the two days as follows:
Saturday 24th January $ 40.00pp for Adults, $10 for children 8-13 , Children 7 and under  Free
11am - 4pm
The day will begin with check in where you will be issued with name tags denoting which branch of the family you belong to . This will make it easy for you to recognise those who descend from the same branch of the family as yourself.
From 12 noon we will have our photographer taking formal group photos of each branch of the family and of the whole group, along with roaming candid photos throughout the day.
These photographs will be available in an inexpensive  book form, after the reunion. Orders to be taken on the day or beforehand  via a form which will be included in a later newsletter.
Leading up to the reunion we will announce the price of  a photographic family history book which will be available for pre-purchase and pick up at the reunion.
Finger food and tea and coffee will be supplied throughout the day and a cash bar will also be available for those who wish to make use of it.
There will be photographic and informational displays and a large family tree available for viewing.
Saturday primarily though is a mix and mingle event where we can all get to know each other.
Feel free to bring along any photos or copies, along with family mementos you wish to share or display.
Saturday Evening
This is at your leisure. We have suggestions for local restaurants for those interested.
Sunday 25th January $50pp, $ 35 per child 13 and under
12 noon - 3:00pm
Buffet Luncheon
Sit down lunch with presentations and speakers (descendants) and cutting of the Reunion Cake
REGISTRATION CAN BE MADE ONLINE BY CLICKING ON THIS LINK
Middlebrook Reunion Registration Form
If you prefer to print and fill in a paper form you can download it here

Memories of My Grandfather:
Bart Middlebrook

By Diana (Allely) McGregor

My grandfather Bart (Nelson Bartle Middlebrook) always smoked a pipe. He also always owned a boat which he spent most of his time on when he was not working. The brothers were allowed to go away on it but not the girls for some strange reason, only known to him. My mother; also was only allowed to stay at school until the 5th form because why would you educate girls when they were only going to get married.

He had a twin sister Eva who used to visit us sometimes. Apparently she was 11 lbs when born and he was 10. Unsure how their poor mother could stagger around. Though he was never a very big man, probably about five foot five at his tallest.


Bart and Eva

He was a chemist and owned several pharmacy shops in Pakuranga during my childhood. He supplied my mother with all sorts of things that were meant to improve our health; Vit C tablets, malt in large tins and fluoride tablets. All his five grandchildren have beautiful teeth.

He and my paternal grandfather built our Bach at Piha where we had many happy family holidays. When he was younger he would walk from Auckland to Murawai after work for a swim.

I would stay with him and Grandma in Pakuranga when I was small and climb into bed with them in the morning and he would get up and make Grandma a cup of tea. Probably to escape from me.

When he retired he and Grandma moved back to Thames and bought the doctors house on the hill. He would work in the hospital pharmacy when they needed a locum and would sometimes relieve pharmacists up in Auckland when they needed to have a holiday.

He taught navigation to the Coast Guards. Boating was always his passion.

He and Grandma bought a new house on the flat in Thames so that he could walk to his boat if he could not drive anymore. He died when I was 28 so only two of my six children ever met him. He always had a story to tell and I can still remember that pipe and the funny hat he always wore and his jackets that smelt of tobacco.

We are still looking for further photographs to include in the Pictorial book which will be available at the reunion - please email Lauren if you have anything at all which may be of interest. This includes not just photographs from the 19th century but also 20th century photographs pertaining to the Middlebrook family.
If you do not have any way of scanning the photographs we may be able to organise someone to visit .

One thing I have noticed since I started researching the Middlebrook Clan, and moreso on meeting various relatives is how the Middlebrook Family members have  remarkable likenesses between siblings,  and cousins, close and distant . One example shown here as these photos show. Jane Thompson Middlebrook, eldest daughter of John and Mary Ann Middlebrook,  not to be confused with her Aunt of the same name) on the left, and on the right, Ellen Hardy , 2nd daughter of Elizabeth and George Douglas Hardy were first cousins but as shown in these photos could almost be mistaken for the same woman. Jane ( known as Cis) was born in 1876 in Auckland and Ellen was born two years earlier in 1874 also in Auckland.  We know the Middlebrook families connected with each other frequently despite geographical distance between them - I wonder how often Jane and Ellen's paths crossed and if they too remarked on their likeness.

New Photos

Here are some photos we have received copies of in the last couple of weeks.

This photo  of descendants of  Samuel Middlebrook shows Lily Dunne ( Widowof John Stewart Middlebrook), Margaret ( Dot) Harris, Bess Middlebrook and Maisie Middlebrook

This is Katikati Number 2 School dated 1900.
In this photo are likely to be Ellen Winifred Middlebrook & Samuel Robert ( Bert) Middlebrook - who appears to be known as Robert in School records for this date. It appears John Stewart had left Katikati Number 2 school on 12th June 1899 aged 15  ( headed for Waihi) , Depending on the date of the photo it also could show Margaret' ( Dot) who's last day was May 1900- aged 14 (destination listed as home)  Maise and Bess were too young to be at school at this time .

This Whitnall-Smith photograph  postcard of Olive Whittaker Middlebrook - daughter of John Middlebrook was sent to John Thompson and Thelma Middlebrook  when she was staying in Garden Terrace Devonport . I am unable to ascertain the date in the postmark . She appears  possible she is wearing some kind of uniform - could it be a nurse or teachers uniform?? - We have no contacts with anyone descended from Olive, who went on to marry William Winks . In both of the electoral rolls ( 1914 and 1919) she qualified to be on before marrying she was living in College Rd Te Awamutu not Devonport.  She married William Winks in 1920.  If anyone has more information on Olive and William we would greatly appreciate it
Olive and Olive and Olive and Olive and Olive and Olive....

There are many name repetitions in our family, the most common you would think are John and Ellen - and certainly there are quite a few Johns and Ellens numbered in the descendants of the original John and Ellen Middlebrook, however there are other names that are duplicated multiple times with less obvious reason.
Olive is one of those names
The earliest that I have found was the Olive shown in the photo above
Olive Whittaker Middlebrook - daughter of John and Mary Ann Middlebrook  born 1891
Olive Marion Simpson - Granddaughter of Jane Thompson Middlebrook and James John McRa, daughter of Jane Elizabeth and Duncan McGregor Simpson  born 1903
Olive Gladys Whitnall Smith -Granddaughter of John and Mary Ann Middlebrook, daughter of Jane Thompson and Henry Whitnall Smith born 1908
Olive Mary Middlebrook - Granddaughter of John and Mary Ann Middlebrook, daughter of Charles Samuel and Kate Middlebrook- born 1917
Olive June Rush - Granddaughter of Jane Thompson and James John McRa, daughter of Mary and Christopher Rush born 1921
Olive Jean Harris Granddaughter of Samuel and Mary Jane Middlebrook, daughter of Margaret and Robert Harris  born 1922

Your Stories Urgently Required

It is our goal to complete a  page for the book a week for the rest of the year. In order to do this and to include as much family as possible in the book we NEED YOUR HELP. We are still urgently requiring stories on many branches of the family. We often have just boring facts such as dates and locations but people are more than that - The best way to remember family is to learn more about their personalities - the good and the bad . Without your help there are most certainly going to be gaps in the research. Helping  could be as simple as jotting down your memories of your parents, grandparents, or any stories you have been told relating to all branches  the family.
Send an email - even if its just a paragraph to Lauren with anything you think might be useful.
Thanks to those who have helped so far - your efforts are greatly appreciated.
Remember to fill in a Family Group Sheet Form here if you havent already.

If you find the online  form confusing - send an email to Lauren with your name and date of birth and include the following info
Your spouses name and date of birth and date of marriage
Your parents names and dates of birth marriage and death
Your siblings names , dates of birth, spouses names, dates of marriages and death dates ( if applicable)
Your children's names dates of birth, marriage, spouses names
Include as much info as you can.