Biography of my 3rd Great Grandfather – Michael Alzano

The following is my submitted Biography for my first assignment for the  University of Tasmania’s Diploma of Family History – module Introduction to Family History.  

Michael
William Frederick Alzano (1829-1901)
was born in Pressburg,
Hungary (present day Bratislava, Slovakia) around the 31st March,
1829.[1]   His
father, Augustine was Italian (possibly from the Alzano Lombardo region), and
his mother Catherine Mondouck[2] was said to be from
Greece. [3]

Michael’s reasons for leaving Hungary
are unknown. Perhaps he was dissatisfied with the political and economic
climate of the country after the War between Austria and Hungary ended after
1848.[4]     Eastern Europeans in the region have long been
associated with “Roaming”. Historically, Hungarian people have been accustomed
to multiculturalism.[5]

Michael arrived in England some time
before the 17th of December 1854; when he married Pamela Barnard,
known as “Pamely” in Northfleet, Kent.[6]  His profession recorded at the time of
marriage was “Waiter” and his father’s profession was “Publican”. [7]

Sensational stories of gold mining in the
colonies were reported in newspaper articles describing the large quantities of
gold found and the effects it had on the economy, such as creating more
employment and higher wages. It may have tempted Michael to make the long
journey to Australia.[8]  

Michael and Pamely
began their new life in Australia on the 27th September 1857,
arriving on the Washington Irving in New South Wales.[9]

Michael worked in
many towns around New South Wales and Queensland, mainly as a Domestic Servant[10].  The couple’s first daughter, Caroline Pamely
was born at Sydney in 1864.[11]  Sadly, their first son Augustine John had died
the year before.[12]

Their second daughter, Maude Mary,
was born in Bathurst in 1867[13], followed by Elizabeth
Soffea in 1869[14],
and Theresa in 1871[15].

While in Queen Charlotte Vale, 12km south of
Bathurst (now known as Perthville)[16], Pamely became seriously
ill and the doctor was called. Sadly Pamely died the next day on the 18th
of May, 1871.[17]  Her death certificate states she was
suffering from Hysteritis (inflammation of the uterus) and Phlebitis,
(inflammation of a vein).[18] Pamely’s death had a
devastating effect on Michael’s four young girls aged between 6 years to only 6
weeks.

At the time of Pamely’s death,
Michael had become a brick maker[19], which would have been
very physically demanding work. It would not have been possible with such a
young family to care for his four girls, without help from family members or
the community. It seems that Michael persisted as best has he could until
around August that year, however there may have been limited social welfare
help in the area at the time, so Michael travelled to Sydney, and placed his
children in the care of the children’s asylums.

Elizabeth Soffea and baby Theresa
were placed with the Sydney Benevolent Asylum on the 15th August,
1871.[20]   Caroline and Maud were placed with the
Randwick Asylum for Destitute Children, the next day.[21]  Elizabeth and Theresa could not join their
sisters at the Randwick Asylum as the institute only admitted children over the
age of 3. [22]

Elizabeth was discharged from the
Benevolent Asylum on the 19th of March, 1872 [23]and her older sisters
Caroline and Maud were both discharged from the Randwick asylum on the 8th
of May 1872.[24]

 Teresa Alzano did not live to see her
father or sisters again. She died at the age of eight months old from Dentition
(teething)[25]
and Dysentery (Diahorrea)[26] at the Benevolent Asylum,
and was buried at Haslem’s Creek (now part of the Rookwood Cemetery).[27]

image

Sydney
Benevolent Asylum c1872
[28]

Michael was making friends in the
gold mining industry and dividing his time between Sydney and Solferino on the
Clarence River. On June 29th 1872, Michael Alzano, Andrea Genetti
and Antonio Vallie wrote a letter to the editor of the Sydney Mail and New South
Wales Advertiser, about the gold that could still be found in the Clarence
River mines.[29]

Michael had shares in the mining
company, Marcolini,[30] travelling to Sydney to
sell his shares once they had made a profit.[31]  For the sum of One thousand pounds, he bought
the Royal Hotel, which was situated on the corner of Prince and Bacon streets
in Grafton, NSW[32]

image

Michael had also purchased the Buccarumbi Hotel, in the Nymbodia , Little
River Region[33]
and had a Publicans licence for the Pick and Shovel Hotel in  the same area.[34]

His success in the region grew fast, however it was shortlived.  He sold the Buccarumbi Hotel in 1873[35] and the
Royal Hotel in Grafton in 1874.[36]  His financial difficulties drove him to Sydney
where he leased the Charlton’s Hotel in Market Wharf Street.[37]

Michael married Mary Jane Bourke, in
Sydney on the 30th July, 1872.[38] It’s assumed Mary Jane
took on the responsibilities of raising Michael’s three children. She died
during childbirth at their residence at Charlton’s hotel in November 1875, and
is buried at the Rookwood Cemetery.[39]

In 1876, Michael married Ellen Hall
in Sydney, while still residing at the Charlton’s hotel.[40]  Michael and Ellen had 2 boys, William (1878-1883)[41] and Robert (1881-1881). [42]

image

 Charlton’s Hotel, Market Wharf Street, Darling Harbour, Sydney. Photograph
was taken after it had been renamed Cochrane’s Hotel in 1888.[43]

Robert Ingall purchased Charlton’s
hotel from Michael in 1878.[44] Michael became insolvent
once again.[45]
He ran a poultry business to make ends meet.[46]

By 1882, Michael and Ellen were
living separately.[47] It is unknown if Ellen
cared for Michael’s children after that date.  

Michael’s daughter Maud married an
American from Washington D.C. George Harris Westley Ford Hooper in 1884.[48]  His eldest daughter Caroline, then known as
Katherine or Katerina, married Robert Edward Munro, of England in1885.[49]  Elizabeth married Caleb Clement Henry Guy; of
Northern Ireland in 1887[50]

It appears that Michael became
estranged from his family for a long time, due to his wanderings. He was
apprehended by police in Cobar and entered an Asylum for a short time in 1895. By
then he was partially blind.[51]

image

Alzano,
Hooper and Munro Family photograph c1900
.[52]          

Left to right standing – Maud Sarah
Alzano Munro, George H.W.F. Hooper, Ellen Elizabeth Alzano Munro. Left to right
middle row seated- Augustine Leslie Hooper, Caroline/Katherine/Katerina Alzano
(Munro), Michael W.F.Alzano, Maud Mary Alzano (Hooper), Pemely Katherina Alzano
Munro, William Frederick Westley Hooper.
Left to right front seated – Irene Caroline Alzano Munro, John Walls
Bamford Hooper. Absent from photograph –Robert Edward Munro, who may have been
working in South Africa at the time.  The
Munro family moved to South Africa sometime after this photograph was taken.[53]

Michael reunited with daughters Caroline and Maud a
short time before his death and moved to Brisbane where he became a News Vendor.[54]

He died at the
Brisbane Hospital in 1901 and was buried in the Toowong Cemetery, Brisbane.[55]

Written by Melanie Smethurst 2017.

 Footnotes:

[1] i)Death Certificate of Michael
William Frederick Alzano, Died 28 August 1901 age 72 years, Australia Death
Index, 1787-1985Australia Death Index, 1787-1985Death in the District of Brisbane,
Queensland registered number 1622, extracted on the 19th October, 1994; ii) Author
Unknown, Birthday book gifted to Augustine Hooper , Entry on the 31st March,
Grandfather M.W.F Alzano, personal collection.

[2] Death Certificate of Michael
William Frederick Alzano Died 28 August 1901.  

[3]  Guy Hooper to Donna, David and Jarrod, October
1985, copy of letter, personal collection.

[4] John Richard Green, a History of the English People:
Nottingham Society, New York, 1910, pgs. 67-70. https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/007684614
Accessed 12 September 2017.

[5] Tibor Frank, translated by Péter Balikó
Lengyel, ‘Migrations in Hungarian History – Part 1’ Hungarian Review Vol 7
no.1, http://www.hungarianreview.com/article/20160114_migrations_in_hungarian_history_part_i. Accessed 10
September 2017.

[6] Certified Copy of an Entry of
Marriage of Michael Alzano and Pamely Barnard, 17th December1854,
The Parish Church in the Parish of Northfleet, Kent, Registration District of
North Aylesford, General Register Office, England application number 6723245/1,
certificate number MXG 600829.

[7] Certified Copy of an Entry of
Marriage of Michael Alzano and Pamely Barnard, 17th December1854.

[8] Find my Past, The British
Newspaper Archive, ‘The Discovery of Gold in Australia’, The North Devon
Journal, pg. 3, July 15 1852, Accessed 13 September 2017.

[9] New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists,
1828-1896New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists,
1828-1896Ancestry, Shipping Records for Michael Alzano,
New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists, 1828-1896
,
State Records
Authority of New South Wales; Kingswood New South Wales, Australia; Persons on bounty ships (Agent’s
Immigrant Lists); Series: 5316 Reel: 2138 and
Series
: 5317, Reel: 2476 , Accessed 12th
September 2017.State Records Authority of New South Wales;
Kingswood New South Wales, Australia; Persons on bounty ships to Sydney,
Newcastle, and Moreton Bay (Board’s Immigrant Lists); Series: 5317; Reel: 2476

[10] i) Birth
Registration Image for Births in the District of Rockhampton – Augustine John
Alzano, born 10 September 1861, Queensland Births Deaths and Marriages, C811, accessed
17 August 2017.  ii) New South Wales
Birth Transcription for Maude Mary Alzano, born 1 July 1867, Bathurst, ref no
1867/6060, NSW Family Transcriptions PTY LTD, printed 11 July, 2015

[11] Ancestry, The Australia Birth
Index 1788-1922, Caroline P Alzano, 1864, Sydney NSW, Registrar of Births
Deaths and Marriages NSW, Reg no 1929, accessed 14 September 2017.

[12] Ancestry, The Australia Death
Index, 1787-1985, Augustus I Alzano, 1863, Sydney NSW, Registrar of Births
Deaths and Marriages NSW, Reg no 116, accessed 14 Sep 2017.

[13] New South Wales Birth
Transcription for Maude Mary Alzano, born 1 July 1867.    

[14] Ancestry, The Australia Birth
Index 1788-1922, Elizabeth Soffea Alzano, born 1869, Bathurst NSW, Registrar of
Births Deaths and Marriages NSW, Reg no 6894, accessed 14 September 2017.

[15] Ancestry, The Australia Birth Index
1788-1922, Theresa Alzano, born 1871, Bathurst NSW, Registrar of Births Deaths
and Marriages NSW, Reg no 6600, accessed 14 September 2017.

[16] Visit Bathurst, Perthville, https://www.bathurstregion.com.au/visit-bathurst/villages/perthville/,
Accessed 17 September 2017.

[17]
NSW death Registration Transcription for Pamely Alzano, died on the 18 May
1871, NSW Family History Transcriptions
Pty Ltd, Reg no 1871/2749.

[18] i) ‘Collins
English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged’
, 12th Edition 2014. “hysteritis.” http://www.thefreedictionary.com/hysteritis
17 September 2017     ii) ‘Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged’, 12th
Edition 2014.
“phlebitis"  http://www.thefreedictionary.com/phlebitis September 17 2017

[19] NSW death registration
transcription, Pamely Alzano, died 18 May 1871.

[20] Sydney Benevolent Society Index to
Admissions and Discharges 1857-1900, Sarah and Theresa Alzano, admitted 15
August, 1871, http://www.sydneybenevolentasylum.com/index.php?page=search-index,
Accessed 17 September 2017.

[21] Ancestry, New South Wales,
Australia, Registers for the Randwick Asylum for Destitute Children, 1852 –
1915, Catherine Alzans and Maud Mary Alzans, admitted on the 16th
August, 1871, State Archives NSW; Series: NRS 13362; Item: 7/3797; Roll: 1866, accessed 17 September,
2017.

[22] Randwick Asylum for Destitute
children, Historical Background, NSW government State Archives and Records, https://www.records.nsw.gov.au/archives/collections-and-research/guides-and-indexes/randwick-asylum-destitute-children,
Accessed 17 September, 2017.

[23] Sydney Benevolent Society Index to
Admissions and Discharges 1857-1900, Sarah Alzano, discharged 19 March 1872.

[24]
Ancestry, New South Wales, Australia, Registers for the Randwick Asylum
for Destitute Children, 1852 – 1915, Catherine Alzans and Maud Mary Alzans,
discharged 8 May 1872.

[25] Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition
2014. “dentition.”   http://www.thefreedictionary.com/dentition
September 18 2017

[26] Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged  12th Edition 2014, “dysentery.”   http://www.thefreedictionary.com/dysentery
September 18 2017.

[27] New South Wales Death Registration
Transcription for Teresa Alzano, Died 23 December 1871, NSW Family History
Transcription Services, Ref no 1871/1549.

[28] Charles Percy Pickering, Benevolent Asylum SH 566, Photographs
of Public and Other Buildings, &c . ,State Library of  New
South Wales, Call number PXD 524, Ref No.442753, Photograph
found on https://dictionaryofsydney.org/media/1836,
Accessed 19 September 2017.

[29]
‘The Clarence Goldfields’, Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser,
29 June 1872, p 815.

[30] ‘I, THE
undersigned, John Oswald Gilchrist, hereby make application to register the Marcolini
Gold Mining Company’, New South Wales Government Gazette Issue no. 311, 6 December, p. 3170.  

[31] ‘Successful
Mining Adventures in the Clarence District’, Australian Town and Country
Journal, 19 October 1872, p 15.

[32]
Advertising,
Clarence and Richmond Examiner and New England Advertiser (Grafton, NSW), 24
September 1872, pg. 3. (2nd Advertisement may demonstrate Michael’s
ability to write or speak Italian and his connection with Italians in the
mining community).

[33] Advertising, The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW:
1842 – 1954) 10 May 1873, p 3.

[34]  Ancestry, New South Wales Police Gazettes
1854-1930, Published 1873, pg. 2463, accessed 17 September 2017.

[35] ‘Advertising’ The Sydney Morning
Herald, 10 May, 1873, p 3.

[36] “No
title” The Grafton Argus and Clarence River General Advertiser, 16
August 1875 pg2.

[37] “IN
INSOLVENCY.” New South Wales Government Gazette (Sydney, NSW: 1832 –
1900)
5 November 1875, p 3552.

[38] ‘Family Notices’,
Evening News (Sydney, NSW), 02 August 1872, p2.

[39] Find My Past, Rookwood Cemetery
transcriptions, Mary Jane Alzano, Old Presbyterian Burial Plot 178, section 8,
Row 11, Accessed 17 September 2017.

[40] Find My Past, New South Wales
Marriages Transcription 1788-1945, Michael Alzano and Ellen Hall, 1876, reg 1110,
Accessed 17 September 2017.

[41] i)Ancestry, Australia Birth Index
1788-1922, William F H Alzano, 1878, New South Wales Births, Reg no. 1864,
Accessed 17 September 2107.ii) Ancestry, Australia Death Index 1787-1985, New
South Wales Deaths , Reg no.123. Accessed 17 September 2017.

[42] i)Ancestry, Australia Birth Index
1788-1922, Robert J Alzano, 1881, New South Wales Births, Reg no. 1138,
Accessed 17 September 2017.ii) Ancestry, Australia Death Index 1787-1985,
Robert J Alzano, New South Wales Deaths, Reg no1339.

[43] Photographer Unknown, Cochranes
Hotel Wharf Street Darling Harbour, Date Unknown, digital image, State Records
NSW, Justine and Police Museum, Sydney’s Pubs, Liquor, Larrikins and the Law, https://sydneylivingmuseums.com.au/stories/sydney%E2%80%99s-pubs-liquor-larrikins-law,
Accessed 20 September 2017.

[44] ‘Advertising’, Newcastle Morning
Herald and Miners’ Advocate, 7 December 1878, p1.

[45] Insolvency Index, Michael William
Frederick Alzano, New South Wales Government State Archives and Records, File
numbers 12414, 14817, https://www.records.nsw.gov.au,
Accessed 17 September 2017.

[46] ‘INSOLVENCY
COURT – Wednesday.’ The
Sydney Morning Herald (NSW 1842 – 1954) 31 July 1879,
p3.

[47] i)Assessment Books1845-1948, Ellen
Alzano, 28 Abercrombie Street, City of Sydney Archives, digital information ,http://photosau.com.au/CosRates/scripts/home.asp,
Accessed 1 September, 2017.ii) “Family Notices” Deaths, The Sydney
Morning Herald, 6 January 1883, p1.

[48] NSW Marriage Registration
Transcription for George Harris Westley Ford Hooper and Maud Mary Algano, 27
October 1884, NSW Family History Transcriptions, Reg 1884/6446.

[49] Ancestry, Australia Marriage
Index1788-1950, Marriage of Robert Edward Munro and Katherine Peniely Alzano,
20 April 1885, Queensland Marriages, Reg B009668, pg. no. 10678, Accessed 18
September 2017.

[50] Ancestry, Australia Marriage Index
1788-1950, Marriage of Soffea E Guy and Clement H Guy, 1887, Nsw Marriages Ref
2541, Accessed 18 September 2017.

[51] Ancestry, New South Wales,
Australia, Hospital & Asylum Records, 1840-1913, Register of Inmates Nov 1894-Jun 1896,  Michael Alzano age 66, Government Asylums for
the Infirm and Destitute, New South Wales Government,  Registers of
admissions and discharges, 1859–1959, Accessed 18 September 2017.

[52] Unknown Photographer, Alzano, Hooper
and Munro Family Photograph c1900,digital image from photograph in Family Album
made by Valerie Archer – nee Hooper abt 1988, in authors personal collection.

[53] i)Ancestry, Cape Province, South
Africa, Civil Deaths, 1895-1972, Form of Information of a death for Robert
Edward Munro 7 July 1943, aged 85, FHL film no 4533173, Accessed 20 September
2017.ii) Ancestry, Cape

Province, South Africa, Civil Deaths, 1895-1972, Form
of Information of a death for Caroline Pamela Munro died 1928,Masters
Office/Orphan Chamber, Cape Town (MOOC), Volume 6/9/3275,Ref 17503, Accessed 20
September 2017.

[54] i) Death Certificate for Michael
William Frederick Alzano, 28 August 190.
ii) Find My Past, Australia Electoral Rolls, The Electoral District of
Brisbane North, 9 August 1901,  Alzano,
Michael William Frederick, Age 72, no.3346, Occupation Newsagent, Claim
received 4 April 1900, Accessed 16 August, 2017.

[55] Death Certificate for Michael
William Frederick Alzano, 28 August 1901.  (Cause of death, Bronchopneumonia, Heart
failure and exhaustion).

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