Thursday, 19 January 2017

Sepia Saturday 351

I love this week's prompt.  Granted, I have once again neglected my poor little blog and therefore have probably missed out on many awesome ideas.

The prompt of photos of the same person at different times in their lives is fantastic.  My great grandfather was a hoarder, so I have many photos... who to choose?

 Georgina "Gean" May Bunston, my great grandmother.

She was born on January 6 1886, the youngest daughter of George and Elizabeth Bunston.

To the left, she is seen here with her mother as a young girl - maybe four years old.

Her family lived on a farm just outside Skipton in country Victoria, Australia.  Her father, George, farmed the land as well as being the local mailman and wool carter.  Her eldest brother, James, married before Gean was a year old and by the time this photo was taken (around 1890) she had lost her younger brother, Andrew, who died in 1889.  Gean would also become an aunt that same year but sadly her nephew died as as infant.

To the right, Gean (on the left) is pictured with her eldest sister, Fannie.  This was taken in 1900 when Gean was 14 years old.  By now Gean was an aunt to six nieces and nephews.  Her second eldest brother, John, was also married by now and had moved off the farm to live in the suburbs of Melbourne.

Brother James and his young family had also moved away, to Mansfield - virtually on the other side of the state.  Sister Fannie would also move to the Mansfield area with her husband after they married in 1901, a year after this photo was taken.  Third brother George and his family would also move to area in the early 1900s.
Gean, shown here in around 1917.  By now she had met my great grandfather, Percy Nash.  This photo was sent to him while he was overseas serving his new country (Percy immigrated to Australia in 1912) in WWI.

All of her siblings were married by this time and she was the aunt to around 26 nieces and nephews.

Gean and Percy would marry in 1920 when he returned to Australia.  They would go on to have four children of their own, three living to raise their own families.

The Nash family would take over the Bunston family farm at Skipton which remained in the family until around 2013.  A well respected family of the district, as were the Bunstons before them.  Active members in their local church.  Percy was a founding member of the RSL and also played cornet in the local brass band.

Jump forward to 1970 - here are Gean and Percy at the time of their 50th wedding anniversary.  They remained on the family farm their whole married life.  Percy would pass away in 1974 at the age of 80.  Gean would pass away the following year at the age of 89.

Friday, 11 November 2016

Information for my book

Hi readers!

I am currently working on a book about the Bunston Family and their descendants.  It is a follow up to the one I compiled back in 2000 - The Bunston Family: Past and Present.

The book is becoming huge! I'm still only working on the first draft and have a long way to go.

Apart from the Bunston name, other names that feature in the book are listed below.  Note that the list will grow as more of the story unfolds.  The family has spread far and wide, throughout the UK, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand (so far).

If anyone is interested in contributing with information / stories / photos etc. rest assured that your name will be added to my list of acknowledgements.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me through the contact form here, or directly via email at

I'm looking forward to hearing from everyone interested.


Friday, 14 October 2016

Sepia Saturday No. 344

Just a small post this time...

With the prompt this time being "Travel and Transport", I like many other other bloggers, was spoiled for choice.  I chose this picture.

Taken during World War II probably near Darwin, Australia, this shows my grandfather Arthur Smith driving a jeep with two of his mates.

Grandad served with the Royal Australian Air Force as a navigator,  Since planes are also a form of transport, I have included a photo of his crew with their bomber, also taken at Darwin.

Grandad is second from the left.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Tombstone Tuesday

This headstone, located at the Skipton Cemetery, had always fascinated me - ever since I was young, visiting my grandmother who was buried about 15m further down the row.

I think it was the name "Elizabeth Lyle" which I had always thought to be very unusual.  Or, perhaps the Bunston surname at the top was also of interest as I knew a Bunston (the only one at the time).  Maybe I wondered if they were related to each other?

I would stop and stare at this headstone every time we went to the cemetery, at the time unaware of who these people were... I still stare today when I visit, but now with a known connection.

Buried here is George Bunston - my great great grandfather.  With him, his wife and my great great grandmother - Elizabeth Lyle Bunston, nee Thompson and their infant son Andrew Thompson Bunston.

I have written about George before - the eldest of 11 children, born in England on 8 February 1835 and migrating to Australia with his sister and first wife Sarah at the age of 20.  He died in Skipton on 18 April 1923 from bronchitis.  He had married his second wife, Elizabeth, in 1864.

Elizabeth was the fifth of seven children, born in Scotland on 13 August 1848 and migrating with her parents and siblings in 1852.  She died in Skipton on 14 June 1926.

Andrew was the youngest of ten children of George and Elizabeth.

This grave is also the resting place for two of their infant grandchildren, buried but not mentioned - though never forgotten.

Thelma May Bunston was the fifth of six children and only daughter of Phillip Henry Bunston and Gertrude May Reyland.  She was born on 22 December 1925 and died aged just three weeks old on January 12 1926.  She died six months before her grandmother.

Also buried here is John William "Jackie" Nash, my great uncle.  Jackie was the youngest of four children of Percy Victor Nash and Georgina May Bunston.  He was born in Linton on 26 January 1927 and died two years later on 14 September 1929 of pneumonia and meningitis.

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Tombstone Tuesday

William Horn Smith, his wife Ada May and their daughter Betty May.  Buried together in the Creswick Cemetery, Victoria, Australia.

My great grandfather, William was born in Dean, Victoria on New Year's Day in 1874.  In 1906 he married Ada May Lawless who was born in December 1885.

Together Ada and William had 13 children.

William died in Ballarat on February 8th 1948.  Ada died on June 3rd 1958 in Frankston.

Their daughter Betty May was born in May 1824.  She was only 10 months old when she died on October 25th.

Ada May with a friend

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Sepia Saturday No. 313

With a photo of siblings as a prompt, I decided to post photos of my grandfathers their respective siblings. 

Left to right: Muriel, Percy (back), Jackie (front), Wilf
With the youngest of the Nash children dying aged just 2 years old, this is likely the only picture of the four of them together - certainly the only one I have.

My grandfather, Percival George was born in Linton, Victoria in December 1921  He married Hilda Pearl Smith at Scrub Hill Presbyterian Church in September 1941, aged 19.  He served in the Royal Australian Navy during World War II.  Hilda and Percy had four children: Eleanor May; Ian John; Garry James Harvey and Andrew Brent.  Hilda died in March 1982 and Percy died in November 1997.  They are buried together in Skipton.

Muriel Gean was born in February 1923 in Linton.  She married Clifford Harrie Morris in 1946 in Ballarat.  Cliff served in World War II in the Australian Army.  He was captured by the Germans and spent over four years in Stalag 18A.  Cliff and Muriel had four sons: David Koloman; Murray; John and Graeme.  Cliff died in January 1990 and Muriel died in 2004.  They were both cremated and their remains are at the Skipton Cemetery.

Wilfred Victor was born in Linton in July 1925.  He married Jean Alison Blackwood in 1951.  During World War II Wilf enlisted in the Royal Australian Air Force, however the war ended before he could take up his post in the South Pacific.  Wilf and Jean had five children: Judith Heather; Susan Margaret; David Graham; Michael Andrew and Robert Alister.  Wilf died in March 2008.  He was cremated and his ashed were scattered at one of the Nash family properties.

John William (Jackie) was born in 1927 in Linton.  Sadly, Jackie died in the Skipton hospital in 1929 after contracting pneumonia.  He is buried in the Skipton Cemetery with his grandparents, George and Elizabeth Bunston - though he is not mentioned on the headstone.

The eldest of four children of James and Charlotte Smith.  Unfortunately I do not have a photo of all five children together.

Phyllis Joy was born in Kimberley, South Africa in September 1913.  Joy married George Rex Hayward.  They had four children together: Elaine Joy; Austen James; Pamela Evelyn and Phyllis Merle.  Rex died in October 1979.  Joy died in March 2008.

My grandfather, Arthur Grenville, was born in Yendon, Victoria in May 1916.  Arthur married Elsie Marie Davenport in 1940.  During World War II Arthur served in the Royal Australian Air Force, being stationed in Darwin.  Arthur and Elsie had five children: Alison Marie; Thyrza Ruth; Esther Jane; Grenville Bruce and Anna Christine.  Arthur died in 2001.  Elsie died in 2014.  They are buried together, with their son Bruce, in the Skipton Cemetery.

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Sepia Saturday No. 300


Although postmortem photos are creepy as hell, I so wish I had some.  Unfortunately I don't, so prompted by the family photo I decided to look at family portraits, parents and their children.

 Family Portraits

 Left to right:- George William Breadmore, Elizabeth Susan Johnston, Alice Maud Breadmore and Mary Breadmore (nee Bunston).  Photo taken c 1886

George Breadmore married Mary Bunston on June 24 1879.  George had been married twice before, his first being Mary Tarr and the second Alicia Phillips.  Mary also was married previously, to Jacob Walters (aka William Johnston).  Elizabeth is the daughter of Mary and her first husband, while Alice is the only child from this union. George had two children with his first wife before her death in 1848 and then nine with his second until her death in 1871.  Nine children also came from Mary's first marriage, with Elizabeth being the youngest.  Between the two of them they had a total of 21 children!

Elizabeth was born in 1874.  She married Frederick Harvey Smith in 1906.  Frederick worked as a painter. Elizabeth died in 1934.

Alice was born on September 20 1880.  She married Ernest Edwin Warren in 1901.  Ernest was born in 1882.  Ernest worked for the Victorian railways.  They had six children together.  Ernest died in 1951 and Alice died nine years later in 1860.


Left to right:- John Thompson Bunston, Roy Walter Bunston, Elizabeth "Bessie" Bunston (nee Kellett) and George Clive Skipton Bunston.  Photo taken c 1898

John was born in Skipton on Jan 10 1867.  He was the second child of George and Elizabeth Bunston (nee Thompson).  Bessie was also born in 1867, in Lysterfield.  She was the eldest child of John and Isabella Kellett (nee Thompson).  John and his wife were cousins, with their mothers being sisters.  John worked as a foreman and he lived in North Carlton with his family.  John died in 1926, not long after the below photo was taken.  Bessie died in 1952.

Left to right:- Roy, John, Elizabeth, George, Annie.  Photo taken c 1925

 Son George was born on Carlton on Feb 12 1893.  He served in the AIF in WWI, joining in 1917.  In 1919 he married Annie Jenkins on the Isle of Scilly.  They returned to Australia and went on to have four children.  George died in Melbourne in 1945.  Annie died in 1983.

Younger son Roy was born in 1895, also in Carlton.  He also served in the AIF, enlisting a year before his older brother.  He married Irene Myrtle Cone.  Together they had one daughter.  Roy died in Fitzroy in 1961 and Irene died in 1987.


Left to right: Mary Feargrieve Park (nee Thompson); Elsie Park and Josiah McNickle Park.  Photo taken c 1894

Mary was born in Berwick, Scotland on March 16 1850.  She was the younger sister of Elizabeth and Isabella Thompson (mentioned above).  She came to Australia at the age of 2 with her family.  She married Josiah Park in February 1867.  Josiah was born in Tyrone, Northern Ireland on June 14 1836.  Josiah worked as a blacksmith in Lake Bolac, Victoria. They had 12 children together.  Josiah died in 1928 and Mary in 1936.  They are buried together in Lake Bolac.

Elsie was the 11th of the 12 children.  She was born in Lake Bolac in 1892.  Elsie married Mr Richardson.  She died in Lake Bolac in 1962.


The Nash Family, Left to right:- George Edward; Matilda (nee Whatley); Percy Victor; Matilda; James William; Selena; Ethel Florence and Beatrice Annie.  Photo taken c.1903

James was born on March 18 1854 in Freshford, Somerset.  He worked as a gardener.  In 1883 he married Matilda Whatley who was born in Oxford on February 9 1861.  Together James and Matilda had eight children and the family lived in Limpley Stoke.  James died on February 2 1914.  In later years, Matilda was known around Limpley Stoke as Granny Nash.  She died on November 10 1956.

George was born on November 7 1884 in Freshford.  Like his father, George worked as a gardener.  He married Cynthia Daisy Edwards Ashman in 1906.  Cynthia was born on October 9 1887.  They had two daughters together.  George died in Limpley Stoke on August 6 1957.  Cynthia also died here on June 1 1970.

Matilda "Till" was born in Bath on January 9 1899.  She married William Sheppard on August 6 1938 in Trowbridge.  William was born on January 2 1890.  He died on September 24 1950.  Till died in Bath in 1976. 

Selina "Doll" was born in Bath in 1896.  She married Ernest Halbrook on May 30 1925.  Ernie was born on November 13 1894.  They had one son together.  Ernie died in Bath on November 28 1951.  Doll died in Trowbridge in 1967.

Ethel was born in 1890 in Bradford-On-Avon.  She married Reginald Richard Skirton on January 24 1911. Reginald was born in Bath in the late 1880's.  Ethel died on December 4 1962 in Bath.  Reg died less than a year later, also in Bath on May 10 1963.

Beatrice was born in Freshford in 1887.  She married Jack Hawkins on June 5 1911.  Jack was born on October 24 1885.  They had three children together.  Beatrice died in Wales in 1947.  Jack died on June 30 1970.