Dowie Family History


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2015 - Web Site Repair

Posted by: Ralph on the 17 January 2015 |

Happy new year to all. Some of my site pages are no longer working, especially getting access to the various family trees. This is being looked at & hopefully be up & running by the end of March as some serious re-work needs to be undertaken.

However if you need any information then email me at

Robert Joseph Dowie

Posted by: Ralph on the 10 May 2012 |

So it has come that the wall has collapsed and another Dowie generation has poked it’s head through. This family resided around Fife in Scotland (Blebo Craigs, Kemback) with the father Robert Joseph Dowie a mason and mother Margaret Millar probably from the same area. Brothers Robert (my 3 G Grandfather) and James were also masons and the other brother Meldrum, may have also followed the family trade.

James’s tree is available on Ancestry and his offspring travelled to Australia (Victoria) as well as the USA. I will be contacting these tree owners to see what other information we can share.

Harry Thompson Taylor

Posted by: Ralph on the 9 May 2012 |

Harry Thompson Taylor went to South Africa as a teacher and that’s about the only information I had. I had discovered records of him teaching at Inch Clutha (NZ) 1889 – 1892, then nothing until a shipping record in 1906 where he departs Southampton to the Cape on board the Norman.

After some success with brother George who also went over to Africa I discovered Harry as a passenger in 1934 aged about 62 travelling to England with an Alice Florence.

This resulted in discovering his wife – Alice Florence Du Terreaux and with a name like that, easily picked up in the 1891 and 1901 UK Census plus family. I assume they either met and married in SA or on board ship. I cannot as yet find any evidence of their marriage. There are estate papers available from SA that will indicate if they had a family – on the wish list for future discovery.

Harry was also a witness for birth of a child John Cecil du Terreaux Quintrell in 1905 who was later the subject of a child protection act in 1923 (age 18), mother mentioned as Lucy Beatrice Eva Quintrell (nee du Terreaux) so a sister went to SA with Alice. The family has been recorded in the Taylor tree.

I have as yet to discover any records in SA on teachers between 1906 to 1934, also there is the missing years between 1892 to 1906, perhaps Harry taught at another school or went to university. If the later occurred then I might find some reference at the University of Otago or other institution.

George Maitland Taylor

Posted by: Ralph on the 8 May 2012 |

GM Taylor

For some time now the resting place of George Maitland Taylor was uncertain as it was listed as Risuma South Africa. This in the end translated into Kisumu, Kenya, Nairobi, Africa.

Many months were spent looking for articles and a few documents were kept by the National Archives of South Africa (NASA) where he had mortgage bonds for a business then went insolvent between 1899 to 1905. I will eventually look at obtaining an extract of these. There is also a court case involving land around Elie’s River which if you Google, is now a suburb just outside cape Town. So he must of spent several years in SA before moving to Kenya. His brother also was residing in SA.

Geo is recorded as a passenger on 25/01/1899 from London to Cape SA, aged 24, single, bricklayer aboard the Maori, stated destination NZ so I would assume does a bit of a round trip.

A couple of months ago I discovered his grave site as some kind person had been recording various headstones around Kenya and published them on the Web. Wow, it still exists, wish we knew more about him, did he ever have family over in Africa? We will probably never know but this also inspired more searching for his brother who resided in SA as a teacher.

More on that in the next blog.

Burning desire to get back onto the land

Posted by: Ralph on the 7 May 2012 |

Well it’s been a shockingly long time since I last updated my blog. Big news is that I finally moved out of Sydney to a country area of NSW. It’s the next step to finding a nice place to live and set myself up for retirement. The only downside is the commute to Sydney for work, sadly the motorway cannot handle peak hour traffic as you get into the built up areas. Anyway it is the price one has to pay for fresh air and a quieter, safer life.

This will open up the opportunity to explore my burning desire to get back onto the land, grow and cultivate my own food, landscape my property with fantastic trees and native plants and of course follow up an old passion of pottery, painting and sculpture.

I also expect some more spare time will be available for genealogy, especially during Winter!

Breaking the brick wall

Posted by: Ralph on the 3 July 2010 |

looking at all recorded Scottish births around the 1784 time frame and surprisingly it is not many

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Visiting the South Island, New Zealand

Posted by: Ralph on the 18 April 2010 |

The massive forest of trees that once stood, Rimu, Kauri and Totara were all milled in the late 1800’s and the various old homesteads are long gone.

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The end of an era

Posted by: Ralph on the 21 February 2010 |

Life continues but some gaps are never filled

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1841 UK Census

Posted by: Ralph on the 9 January 2010 |

Not sure how Dowie became Dowen, perhaps a Scottish accent

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Genealogy blues

Posted by: Ralph on the 26 September 2009 |

I have hit many genealogy brick walls in the past few years and the Dowie wall is the hardest to knock down.

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