This post is for Week 22 of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge - 2015 - by Amy Johnson Crow from No Story Too Small. Prompt for Week - commencement.
Thinking about commencement meaning 'a new beginning' two of my family came to mind. My maternal 2nd great grandfather Joseph Antoney and my paternal great grandfather, Emanuel Vero. What a coincidence, two people from the Azores Islands, Portugal from two sides of the family.
I wonder what made them come to Australia, they could have chosen any country after all couldn't they? Emanuel is a mystery to me as I have not been able to correctly identify him from shipping lists. He married Dorothy Oswald on 20th June 1874 in Newcastle, New South Wales and went on to have nine children.
Joseph was a sailor and left the Fiery Star in Brisbane, Queensland on 20 November 1864. He married Elizabeth Hannah Young on 30 July 1867 and settled in Bowen and later the Mackay district. Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on your point of view, Joseph was declared an Alien in 1920 and applied for and was granted Naturalisation. I say fortunately because Joseph listed all the places he had been as a sailor which has allowed me to build up a picture of his life before Australia. I wonder why Joseph chose to leave the ship in Brisbane when he had been all around the world, I guess he saw opportunity.
Thinking of these two men, they both had 'new beginnings' and new lives in Australia. Emanuel found work at the docks in Newcastle as a coal trimmer and life was hard as I have mentioned in previous posts. Joseph had a more fortunate life in that he selected property and farmed the land. A strange occupation for a seaman perhaps? Maybe he came from farming stock in the Azores, I will never know. I also wonder how they managed with the language, no English classes then for migrants!