The Family of Jane BEER of Cairns, Queensland
Jane BEER married Samuel BROWN on 17 June 1893 in Bowen, Queensland. They had two children (William and Selina) before Sam disappeared, never to be heard from again. (Sam's story is here.) Soon after, Jane joined up with Charles TAYLOR and they had eight children.
This is the story of Jane BEER and her family.
Jane was born in Cadyton a suburb of Cardiff, Wales in 1867, the first child of Isaac BEER and Mary Collins. Mary was a local girl, born in Cowbridge, Wales in 1846, but Isaac was born in Yarcombe, Devon and had only recently arrived in Cardiff, presumably looking for work.
In the 1871 census Jane was aged 4. The family was living at Hayes Farm, Sully. Isaac was working as an Agricultural Labourer. Sully is a few miles south of Cardiff. The census enumerator obviously had some problems with Isaac's accent, recording him as BEARD, and born in Yarkem.
However by 1881, when Jane was 14, she was working as a servant nurse for Richard DEACON, mechanical Engineer and his wife at 11 Church Rd, Penarth. Her family were a short distance away at 32 Dock St.
[When we visited 11 Church St in 2003 the house was due
to be demolished and a large set of town houses erected. The neighbours
had objected on the grounds that the plan was too large and out of
character with the neighbourhood. Apparently the objectors won as the
building has been restored as two town houses.]
On 29 March 1892 Jane departed from London on the ship JELUNGA bound for Queensland ports. She was contracted to disembark at Bowen, Queensland. She is listed as a Domestic Servant, aged 25 and single. Jane arrived in Bowen on 20 May 1892.
About a year before Jane left London, on 26 May 1891 two young men Samuel and James BROWN boarded the ship JUMNA in London, bound for Bowen, Queensland. They are shown as farm labourers, aged 19 and 20. They travelled on the same ticket number (1090) so were almost certainly brothers.
Sam and Jane were married in Bowen on 17 June 1893 at the house of Mrs Townshend by James Gibson, Presbyterian Minister. Sam was aged 21 and Jane was 22. According to the marriage record, Sam was born in Scotland, but there are no records of his birth in Scotland. Instead the shipping record shows his as Irish and indeed there is a baptism for a Samuel Brown in County Derry on 9 March 1872. By June 1893 Sam would have been 21. (Sam's story is here.)
Jane and Sam had two children, William on 1 September 1894 and Selina on 4 July 1895:
And then between late 1894 and the end of 1896 Sam vanished, never to be heard from again (at least as far as the family is aware).
Soon after Sam left, probably in mid-1896, Jane established a relationship with Charles David TAYLOR and their first child, Charles, was born on17 September 1897. (Charles' story is here.) Jane and Charles had eight children:
|Charles||17 Sept 1897|
|Jessie||9 Dec 1899||12 Apr 1925|
|James||1 Noc 1901|
|Frederick||13 MAr 1904|
|David||1 Oct 1906|
|John||20 Mar 1909||1909|
|Jane Alice||30 Jan 1911||25 Nov 1911|
|George Edward||12 Mar 1913|
Jane's family now looks like this:
On 12 May 1909 Jane and Charles drove into Cairns in their horse and buggy and were married at the Presbyterian Church, Sheridan St, Cairns. He is shown as a bachelor and she a widow. The older children recall the couple getting dressed up, driving off and returning home - married. They had waited over 11 years to be able to marry. Apparently Sam BROWN had died and Jane had been notified. Perhaps Sam had made a Will (on his deathbed?). As he was still married, Jane was his heir and next of kin. But where he died - we have no idea.
Jane died in May 1929 in Cairns. She was buried in the the Cairns Cemetery (Monumental Section plot J1/1955) on 30 May 1929,
Charles David TAYLOR died in Cairns and was buried in the Cairns Cemetery (Monumental Section plot O2/3511) on 4 June 1938.
Will was born in 1894, the oldest child of Jane and Sam BROWN. There is more information about Will here.
Last updated: 14 December 2011