Skip to comments.Britons Can Trace Australian Ancestors Online
Posted on 06/04/2008 4:54:49 PM PDT by blam
Britons can trace Australian ancestors online
Last Updated: 11:18AM BST 04/06/2008
Sixteen million Britons related to free settlers who colonised Australia will be able to trace their ancestors online from today.
AP Records list the Irish ancestors of Nicole Kidman
Although often portrayed as a nation of convicts, Australia's early population was largely based on immigrants who voluntarily sailed from Britain in search of a better life.
The details of 9 million people who arrived in New South Wales between 1826 and 1922 are to be made available.
More than 2 million of them were free settlers from Britain leaving behind poverty and persecution or lured by the prospect of making their fortune.
Some paid their own way, while others were subsidised by the government or a benefactor.
Their name, race, occupation and details of arrival are all contained in neatly-written documents.
The records list the Irish ancestors of Nicole Kidman, the actress. Bridget and James Callachar arrived in Sydney aboard the Agnes Ewing in 1842 - a time of great hardship in Ireland. They settled in Port Macquarie and had a son, Miss Kidman's great-great-grandfather.
Also documented is the arrival of Charles Bradman, an assisted immigrant and grandfather of the batsman Sir Donald Bradman. He was a labourer from Withersfield in Suffolk but left in 1855 aboard the Rose of Sharon.
Sir Redmond Barry left London in 1839 on the Calcutta and caused a scandal by conducting an affair with a married woman while on board. In Australia he became a judge and sentenced Ned Kelly, the outlaw, to hang.
Robert Louis Stevenson, the author of Treasure Island who had settled in Samoa, also arrived seeking medical treatment in 1893 shortly before his death.
As a result of the mass immigration Australia's population swelled from 53,000 in 1826 to 5.6 million in 1922.
Simon Harper, managing director of Ancestry.co.uk which has compiled the records online, said: "Australia's free settler heritage is often overlooked in favour of its more colourful' convict past, however it should be remembered that free settlers were brave and ambitious, making the choice to leave their homes and travel by ship for many months to the other side of the world for the chance of a new life.
"These records are of significance not only to the one in three Australians who are of free settler descent, but also to an estimated 16 million Brits, most of whom will be unaware of their links to early Australian pioneers."
Ancestry.co charges and gets into every free site
This is OT but Nicole ain’t lookin’ too good in that pic.
Actually shouldnt the headline read
Australians can trace British ancestors online ???
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