Tag Archives: Tansey

Tennis at Barkers Creek in 1926

It is 1926 at Barker’s Creek on the northern edge of Castlemaine in Central Victoria and four men stand by a fence watching a game of tennis in a bush setting .Is is probably at The Hermitage, the home of the Robertson family,  and is a casual affair.  I have written before of the young women playing tennis there and having a picnic style cup of tea.  But this time it is the men’s turn.  The photo from our family album  has been given a place and a year but no names have been added, though possibilities are Webber and Robertson.

Barkers Creek 1926 Men b

The well dressed tennis player would always wear his white flannel or duck trousers

My photo is in response to a 1940 image of a group of four men who are more inclined to play golf rather than tennis. The image was supplied by Sepia Saturday as this week’s inspiration for a post.  Judging by their clothes I get the impression that perhaps  playing golf is not something that they do regularly.

Meanwhile, when not playing tennis, the family album shows that girls just want to have fun and with a little ingenuity and imagination they horse around, with my mother, Vera Tansey, acting as the coachman. Part of the picnic table from the previous post is just visible to the  left of the young ladies.  Bye, Bye all,  See you later.

Barkers Creek 1926 3

Further foursomes can be found at this week’s Sepia Saturday.

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Tennis in the Bush

It is 1926 at Barker’s Creek on the northern edge of Castlemaine in Central Victoria and four men stand by a fence watching a game of tennis in a bush setting .Is is probably at The Hermitage, the home of the Robertson family,  and is a casual affair.  I have written before of the young women playing tennis there and having a picnic style cup of tea.  But this time it is the men’s turn.  The photo from our family album  has been given a place and a year but no names have been added, though possibilities are Webber and Robertson.

Barkers Creek 1926 Men b

The well dressed tennis player would always wear his white flannel or duck trousers

My photo is in response to a 1940 image of a group of four men who are more inclined to play golf rather than tennis. The image was supplied by Sepia Saturday as this week’s inspiration for a post.  Judging by their clothes I get the impression that perhaps  playing golf is not something that they do regularly.

Meanwhile, when not playing tennis, the family album shows that girls just want to have fun and with a little ingenuity and imagination they horse around, with my mother, Vera Tansey, acting as the coachman. Part of the picnic table from the previous post is just visible to the  left of the young ladies.  Bye, Bye all,  See you later.

Barkers Creek 1926 3

Further foursomes can be found at this week’s Sepia Saturday.

Halloween in Caldecote

Halloween cardHalloween.   October 31st.  There are some families in Australia  who have good reason to pass on their ancestral Halloween traditions to their children while the Christian community celebrates October 31st  it in its own way as All Hallows Eve.

Usually it is a most unremarkable day in Australia.

But in other parts of the world  it is a time for  black cats, bats and spiders,  ghosts, skeletons, witches and wizards;  or pumpkins,  cobwebs, haunted houses  and graveyards

So this Halloween let us glide over to the  graveyard at The Church of St. Mary Magdalene in Caldecote, Huntingdonshire, a few miles south of Peterborough.

Caldecote-Church The church has now been converted into a private residence after having been de-consecrated in the mid 1970s  and the headstones  have been stacked against the church wall the last time I heard.

A_second_row_of_gravestones,_Caldecote_-_geograph.org.uk_-_1162330

Photo from Michael Trolove

Perhaps the ghosts rise up on the night  of October 31st to protest at having been disturbed.  There might even be some Tanseys and some Lawsons among them.  A perfect setting for all things supernatural.

Headstone Thomas Rebecca tanseyThis lonely church  is where my  grandfather’s grandparents, Thomas Tansey and Rebecca Lawson, were  married in 1834  Later they were buried  there  after all twelve of their children were christened there and five of their children  buried there.

Thomas-Reb-Marr-CertThere are three different spellings for the same person’s surname.  Thomas signs Tanser, the Curate writes Tansor and the headstone says Tansey.

But when Thomas was born in 1813 in Whittlesey to the east of Peterborough he was christened as Tansey.  That was the year that Richard Wagner was born, Napoleon invaded Russia and the USA declared war on the UK, a war which lasted 2 years

Further links to the colourful Halloween card can be seen at this week’s Sepia Saturday post

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Sisters – Vera and Hilda Tansey

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Sepia Saturday  has suggested that we explore Sisters this week and so my photo of my mother Vera Tansey (on the left) with her younger sister Hilda.

Vera was born in Geelong  in 1899 and Hilda  fifteen  months later. But being so close in age Vera was held back so that the sisters would start school together.

But this lovely photo was taken in 1915 when they were living in Traralgon, in Gippsland. The photo was in postcard form and had been sent to a friend.  So how did it come back into Vera’s possession ?

Vera Hilda 1915 Traralgon postcard backVera has later added 1915 and Traralgon.  I believe Hilda had written the original inscription.  Who would they have sent it to, someone who Vera would see later in life for it to be returned.  Before coming to Traralgon they had been living in Murtoa  where they were friendly with Jack Findlay. He had come with them from Geelong to Murtoa but remained behind in Murtoa when they shifted to Traralgon.  However he kept in close touch with the Tanseys and later he shifted to Traralgon and married a local girl, Fordyce Brereton.

Vera kept in touch with Fordie (Fordyce) for most of her life and I think it highly likely that was how the photo was returned to Vera.

A younger Vera (on the left) and Hilda had also been photographed while living in Murtoa, on this occasion dressed in fancy dress.  Murtoa was also the place where Vera suffered from Scarlet Fever and was given daily twenty minute  cold baths containing ice, as part of the treatment.   Murtoa had recently acquired an Ice Works.

Vera-&-Hilda-1911-Murtoa-Fancy dressAnd we can follow the sisters further back  to 1902 in Geelong where we have another photo of the two sisters together, this time in a family group.

Vera Hilda Tom Amelia Geelong 1902-3Vera became a traditional housewife,  caring for her husband and children.  Hilda married three times, was a bookkeeper and was involved with brass bands as player, conductor and teacher.

Further examples related to this week’ s Sepia Saturday image can be found on their blog.

Two Coppers and an Ape Knee

1921     George V was on the throne of England,   Billy Hughes was Prime Minister of Australia, Harry Lawson (from Castlemaine)  was Premier of Victoria and Charlie Chaplin starred in “The Kid”.  Ginger Meggs made his first appearance in a comic strip, Australia beat England 5-0 at cricket (howzat ?} and Tom Tansey used three coins – – two pennies and one halfpenny — as a fob  to weight the end of his watch chain, with the help of a black grosgrain ribbon.Fob Watch Halfpenny b Fob Watch Penny back bSince the  Crimes (Currency) Act 1981 (Australia) it has been a criminal offence to deface or destroy current Australian currency coins but in the past it was quite common to punch a hole in coins and use them as a fob.     Fob Watch 1 bAnd do I have a photo showing Tom wearing his watch ?  Unfortunately no.  There are plenty  of photos of Tom in band uniform and but very few family photos of him.  And so it is hard to work out exactly how Tom wore his pocket watch.  The map and two shields on the black grosgrain ribbon seem to suggest that this ribbon may have been worn horizontally with a chain and watch attached  He may have kept his pocket watch in his trouser pocket or his waistcoat pocket.  He may have attached the chain through a buttonhole.  He may have ……I will probably never know.

Tom&Amelia 1940s Sydney

Tom In Sydney in the 1940s but no sign of a watch chain,

Fob Watch Three coins b

And so — two pence and a halfpenny

–                        tuppence and a ha’penny

–                                two coppers and a ha’penny

–                                         two coppers and an ape knee

More Money, Money, Money stories to be found in this week’s

Sepia Saturday

Kitchen Week – in Snitterfield

When Tom Tansey left Snitterfield near Stratford on Avon in 1888 to travel half way round the world to Geelong in Australia he knew that there was little chance that he would see his family again.  I find that hard to imagine, sixteen years old and never to see your parents, three sisters and brother. again.  Another sister was born the year after he left  but he was to meet her later on as she  also came to Australia.

Letitia Trickett, Geelong, aunt of Tom Tansey

Letitia Trickett, Geelong, aunt of Tom Tansey

 

One consolation was that he came to live with his Aunt Letitia  – his mother’s sister. She had married Phillip Trickett and settled in Geelong.  But she was a stranger to Tom as she had come to Australia in 1870, two years before Tom was born.

One thing Tom did have though was a photo of the kitchen that he left behind, the kitchen where he had grown up for sixteen years.

kitchen in SnitterfieldThe heart of the kitchen was a Victorian cast iron range- a utility version of the many kinds which were available.  There is a central firebox with a small oven either side and a chain hanging down to suspend a pot or kettle.  Either side of the range was a small warm nook, just the right size for a child.  There are interesting things to speculate on in the image – the lamp,  knickknacks on the mantlepiece, Father’s chair by the fire, bellows to blow the fire, a stool for a child  and what appears to be a curtain

There was a second brick oven outside in the  wash house.  It was there that the Sunday roast and Yorkshire pudding was cooked. The neighbours would bring their dinners to be baked and were charged a penny to help to help pay for the wood – they would also bake pies and tarts for the week.

This kitchen was the place for the weekly Saturday night bath in a tub in front of the fire.

It is where Tom’s mother sat to make rag rugs for the floor.

It is where Tom’s father would sit by the fire to read his Birmingham Weekly Post with a stumpy old clay pipe in his mouth (his nose warmer) and the cat Moses 0n his knee.

It is where Tom’s mother would set out for Gospel Oak to buy their honey and when there having to accept a cup of “tay” which had been strained through the seller’s hessian apron.

It was from this kitchen that Tom would set forth to band practice.

And from here he would also leave to go to school where he learnt his beautiful copperplate handwriting.

The details of life in the kitchen came from Ellen (Nin) Tansey (1889-1975), Tom’s sister who came to Australia as a war widow in 1920, to remarry and settle in Sydney.

More kitchen related stories can be found through this week’s Sepia Saturday bloggers.

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Polka Music in Geelong

The railway line between Melbourne and Geelong opened in 1857 and in 1866 von Rochlitz published the Geelong – Melbourne Railway Polka, this copy from the National Library of Austtalia.   It was a common practice for a new song to be  commissioned for the band to play at the opening of a new railway.

Geelong-Melbourne Railway Polka

Over the years Polkas appear in the programs of musical entertainments in Geelong including performances by Geelong’s Volunteer Rifle Band, the oldest Victorian Militia unit, first raised in 1854 in Geelong as a Volunteer Rifle Corps

The Volunteers were present for the arrival of the first train and the official opening of the Geelong Railway Station  and so was a band who played some spirited items.   A huge banquet was arranged but unfortunately the train was late and the locals had their fill of the feast before the  invited guests arrived, including the Governor, Members of Parliament  and other dignitaries.

The Geelong Artillery Band , as the Volunteer Rifle Corps band later became,  is commemorated in the Bollard Walk along the seafront.  The band played its  first recital in 1861

bollard band

And what could they possibly be playing ?

Geelong Polka music  Flickr 3374324250_5290276276_z

My grandfather, Tom Tansey, joined this band some time after arriving in Australia in 1888  and was with them until 1899.  This photo of the Artillery band was taken in 1890

Artillery-1890And was Tom with the band when this photo was taken ?  I don’t know. His portrait (below) was in the uniform of the Geelong Town Band c1900.

Tom-ValveTrombone

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This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday for this week but there are plenty more examples of polkas, violets, music and mystery posts to be found in the links on the Sepia Saturday page.