Thursday, 20 June 2013

The wish list

That’s the list of the projects I’m trying to finish. There are three of them. The problem is, I keep getting diverted around corners and down interesting rabbit holes.

(1) The sporty Carrs

I started by researching my father’s family – his mother and father, May Queenie Carr (nee Tyson) and Edwin William ("Slip”) Carr - and my great grandfather and great grandmother – Thomas Peter “TP” Carr and Harriett Carr (nee Augood).

I have a lot of information about many members of this group, especially Slip Carr and his father and brothers, who were outstanding sportsmen. Slip represented Australia at Rugby Union and competed at the 1924 Paris Olympic Games. I decided to research and write his and their stories.

(2) The early Carrs

Then I discovered my great great grandfather and gx2 grandmother – Henry William Carr and Maria Carr (nee Lillyman). Henry had come out to Australia from Ireland when very young, most likely in the late 1850s, and settled in Wee Waa, New South Wales (pronounced “we wore”). There he met and married Maria Lillyman, an immigrant from England.

I decided to research these “first arrivers” from Europe and the founders of the Australian family. I would write their story up to the end of the 19thC and then move seamlessly back to project (1). Good plan.

(3) The Irish Carrs

But no. While doing that, I discovered that William Henry Carr had several brothers and sisters who had also come out to Australia in the 19thC. There were clues to them in a mysterious letter written by an Irishwoman, Mrs Magill, to a distant Australian relative, Fred Carr, in the early 1920s. The letter turned up in my grandfather’s trunk in 1994 (see “How the journey started”).

Who were these Irish immigrants? I had to find out. I delved some more, the list grew and I learnt there were still more siblings in Ireland. Also, a gx3 grandfather and grandmother, Frederick and Elizabeth Carr. They may have had 16 children or more.

I thought I had gone as far as I could with the Irish Carrs. But then, earlier this year, I made contact with other descendants of that big Irish family and found out more (see "Advertising works”).

So I have some partly written manuscripts, a growing pile of research and a whole lot of new questions.

One day maybe, I will find out more about my mother’s family tree - the Camerons and Davidsons - and about the Tysons – the family of my grandmother, May Queenie Tyson.


  1. You've a bit of a traffic jam on your hands

  2. Tee hee. I am VERY familiar with the scenario you describe :)