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Home: Surnames: Kealy Family Genealogy Forum

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Re: Any Kealys In Australia here?
Posted by: Michael Drew (ID *****7422) Date: May 02, 2003 at 03:59:01
In Reply to: Any Kealys In Australia here? by William Patrick Kealy of 215

Hello William

I realise your post was an old one and you haven't responded to any of the posts in this thread but I will have a shot anyway.

Although I am not a KEALY by surname I am certainly descended from the Edenhope KEALYs that you mentioned.

I wonder whether you are William KEALY from the Apsley/Edenope area of the Wimmera who is married to Monica. If so I met your wife last week, but unfortunately you were in Melbourne and I missed you.

The Edenhope KEALYs descend from two brothers who emigrated to Victoria separately from Corbetstown in Kilkenny IRE in 1855 and 1858 respectively.

The first brother was Patrick who married Ann CASS. They arrived in Portland, Victoria aboard the Balnaguith in 1855, with their young son James Balnaguith KEALY who was born on board. When they alighted Tom HAMILTON, son of the owners of Bringalbert Station was looking around for a general hand and a cook - and he hired the KEALYs and took them with him to Bringalbert.

Descendants of the KEALYs recreated that journey over the Easter/Anzac Day weekend just gone, meeting in Apsley on Anzac Day. A bus tour was arranged of various properties including Bringalbert Station that were historically relevant to the KEALYs.

A couple of years later Patrick's brother William arrived, probably aboard the Coldstream in 1858. He too ended up on Bringalbert Station working for HAMILTON.

Emily KEALY nee COOK(E) wrote "The History of Bringalbert South" in 1932 as well as a book of verse called "Apsley Past and Present". The first book in particular outlines the carving up of Bringalbert by early selectors including Patrick KEALY. His descendants still own the same selection to this day.

I am descended from the second KEALY, Patrick's brother Bill. The fourth generation of William KEALYs in the Edenhope/Apsley/Bringalbert area is still there - and may be the William KEALY who made this original post.

The Apsley Cemetery has 8 KEALYs in residence and the Edenhope Cemetery has 29 (I think). I believe there are more in Naracoorte Cemetery, just over the South Australian border.

For those cricket fans among you, it was Tom HAMILTON of Bringalbert Station who began to teach some of his aboriginal shearers to play cricket. They eventually formed a team in the 1860s that some years later toured England, becoming the first Australian cricket team to ever tour overseas. Tom WILLS, one of the founders of Australian Rules football was involved in coaching this team.

In 2005, it is tentatively planned to hold a reunion of KEALYs in the Edenhope area. This will be the 150th anniversary of the family arrival in Australia.

Any other members of this KEALY group?

Michael DREW
(son of Noel DREW, son of Mary Ann MOORE, daughter of Mary KEALY, daughter of William KEALY of Corbetstown, Kilkenny)

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