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Home: Surnames: Purviance Family Genealogy Forum

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Re: Purviance from Castle Finn, Donegal
Posted by: Stephen Miller Date: March 18, 2001 at 00:25:25
In Reply to: Re: Purviance from Castle Finn, Donegal by Mark Gordon of 282

Thanks very much for replying.
First my connection to the Purvines ....
My great grand mother was Caroline PURVINES (PRICE). After the death of her first husband Robert Gordon PURVINES she married James MILLER from the Orkney Islands.

My connection with the Gordons was more from curiosity. The Gordon and Purvines family were obviously very close. Caroline and James had seven children, the youngest of whom died only a few months ago. Their second child was James, who named his second child Gordon (my uncle).

When I was on Bathurst just prior to Christmas I found the gravestones of all nine PURVINES children. Strangely, they came half way across the world, and are buried within 10m of each other!

I noted one grave of STEWERT (sic) GORDON, son of your David and Matilda.

What follows is an excerpt from my research ......

Thomas and Matilda PURVINES (PURVENES) leased a farm in Purvy, county Donegal, Ireland in the first half of the 19th century. English landowners wanted to transform much of Donegal farming land to sheep farms. The small leaseholder was no longer wanted and working the small farms became unprofitable. The PURVINES family was one such family under pressure. Thomas and Matilda sent all nine of the children to Australia to find a better life. The children were probably Gaelic speaking. Which may account for the unusual spelling “Purvines” here in Australia. In the shipping records Rebecca and Letitia are “PURVINAS”, Anne Jane is “PROVINES”. The ages of the children when they made this voyage were 25, 23, X, 28, 21, X, 25, X and 21. Their sixth child, Thomas (who like his father married a Matilda) had a son Robert Gordon PURVINES who married Caroline PRICE in Balranald. Thomas’ funeral notice in a Bathurst newspaper says that the funeral would commence from the residence of James MILLER.
The PURVINES family was one of thousands of Irish farming families who were forced to leave Donegal. Both Protestant and Catholic churches combined to assist youngsters to go to Australia. The Donegal Relief Fund paid for over 3000 to emigrate to Australia.
The 1855 Bathurst landholders survey includes.... James MAHER (Evans Plains), John MAHER (Oberon), David GORDON (Penrose farm at White Rock), Thomas MOORE (Poor Man’s Hollow), Robert CARROLL (Evans Plains) and Joshua and Richard GLASSON (Guyong).
On the Bathurst 1870 electoral roll Robert CARROLL is living at Mount Pleasant, James MAHER in Evan’s Plains, Alexander CRILLEY in Rockett St. The 1885 stock listing records David GORDON’s farm (Glengowan?)at White Rock as 260 acres, with 8 horses, 30 cattle and 5 pigs., Robert CARROLL worked 250 acres at Evans Plains, with 7 horses and 50 cattle. Likewise James MAHER worked 175 acres with 6 horses and 18 cattle. His wife’s headstone spells the name MARR. The 1908 marriage of David GORDON jnr to Edith Mary Hamline GLASSON brought another well known Bathurst family into the GORDON family. Interestingly the marriage produced 5 children, all with Hamline as a middle name. Bruce (1914) and Ronald (1916) were born at Blayney where James MILLER’s last four children were born.
Andrew CRILLY (b. 1839 castle Fin, Donegal) came to Victoria on the Elizabeth Ann Bright in 1860. Eliza CRILLY (b 1825 Portoferry, County Down) came to Australia on the Marco Polo in 1852.

Do you know where Millbrae is?

Perhaps you can correct my work.
Stephen Miller


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