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Kelly Park is located at the corner of Lawrence St and Melrose Place in Wodonga, Victoria, Austraila. An entry in the newsletter of the Wodonga Family History Society outlines that the park is named after Kellys who emigrated from Australia.[1]  It reads:

Three Kelly brothers left Paulstown in Ireland in 1850. Their sister Mary, who was employed in Sydney, paid their fare on the ‘Hilton’ as she feared that they may be conscripted for the Crimean War. They purchased an area of 80 acres, on which Kelly Park was a part of, from Mr W McFarlane in 1872. The majority of this land was heavily under vines. The Kelly brothers, and their family, cleared the land and farmed the property they called ‘Melrose’. [The] Council purchased the land in 1963.


[1] Burrows, Norma. 2012. Article in Borderline News, Wodonga Family History Society p.8. http://wodongafamilyhistory.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/WFHS-Newsletter-2012-02.pdf accessed 16 May 2012.

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Walton – On the 10th inst., at his residence, Faraday street, Carlton, John Xavier Walton, of Paulstown, Kilkenny, Ireland.[1]


[1] Author Unknown, Deaths in The Argus, 17 October 1874, p.1; National Library of Australia, http://trove.nla.gov.au :  accessed 16 May 2012

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There are a number of articles in various local Australian newspapers about the life of Thomas O’Rourke. He was born in Paulstown on 8 September 1844[1] and emigrated to Australia with his mother, father and sister about December 1867.[2] His three brothers had emigrated before the rest of the family. He lived until he was 95 years of age and died on 24 August 1940.[3]

Some of the articles refer to his life before he moved to Australia. He talked about how he worked as a farm labourer in Paulstown and that the wage of the time was 4d (pence). The landowner that he worked for used to feed his workers and they were given “stir about” to eat.[4] This was a dish of coarse meal that was well boiled and eaten with milk. They were given this three times a day and got potatoes now and then. O’Rourke only ate meat once in his life before moving to Australia, stating that “I only tasted meat on one occasion and that was when my father and I were in Paulstown one day – we had a chop between us”. [5]

O’Rourke even had links to people in Paulstown who were born in the late 1700s. He outlined in one interview that when he was a boy an 80 year old man used to visit their house and tell them “tales of the early days”.[6]


[1] Author Unknown, Mr. T O’Rourke Celebrates 94th Birthday in The Longreach Leader, 10 September 1938, p.19; digital image, National Library of Australia, http://trove.nla.gov.au : accessed 1 April 2011

[2] Author Unknown, A Race for Life in The Longreach Leader, 1 December 1937, p.16; digital image, National Library of Australia, http://trove.nla.gov.au : accessed 1 April 2011

[3] Author Unknown, Death of Mr. T O’Rourke at Longreach in Rockhampton Morning Bulletin, 26 August 1940, p.8; digital image, National Library of Australia, http://trove.nla.gov.au : accessed 1 April 2011

[4] Ibid.

[5] Author Unknown, Mr. Thomas O’Rourke Celebrated 95th Birthday in Rockhampton Morning Bulletin, 13 September 1939, p.9; digital image, National Library of Australia, http://trove.nla.gov.au : accessed 1 April 2011

[6] Author Unknown, Mr. T O’Rourke Celebrates 94th Birthday in The Longreach Leader, 10 September 1938, p.19; digital image, National Library of Australia, http://trove.nla.gov.au : accessed 1 April 2011

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I have compiled a listing of all those who gave their ‘origin location’ (home) as Paulstown in the Assisted Immigrant Passenger List to New South Wales Australia 1828-1896[1] . Assisted immigrants were those who had their passage partly or wholly paid by another person or by an agency. Those who mention Paulstown show up between the years 1849-1867. This, of course, covers the year of The Famine and would be one of the main reasons why people emigrated.

In all, 44 people are listed. Compared with passenger lists to America of the same time period, the genealogical information they provide is excellent. The immigrant had to provide their name, age, parents names, occupation and if they had any relations in Australia. Unfortunately, not all of these lists were legible. Where this is the case the unknown word is signified by _____ . A question mark after a word indicates I am pretty sure that is it. Some people have two dates listed. The first date refers to the “List of Immigrants Per Ship’ and is the day the ship arrived. The second date refers to the “List of Immigrants Per Ship as Inspected by the Immigration Board”. Some people did not have the second document available for examination.

This list shows how many of the young people of the Paulstown area left for Australia, most likely never to return. In a good few cases siblings travel together or in chain migration, following each other after a couple of years. No doubt, many more people from the Paulstown area emigrated to Australia in the 19th and 20th centuries. Hopefully I will be able to document these people as time progresses. If anyone has information on an ancestor from Paulstown who emigrated to Australia, and they are not listed here, then I would be very grateful if you could add their information in  a comment under this blog entry.

The first entry, for Catherine Balkin, has a piece of information which is fantastic find for a genealogist, and any of her descendants.

The file is in PDF format and can be opened and downloaded.

Paulstown People Emigrating to Australia 1849-1867


[1] Ancestry.com. New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists, 1828-1896 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2007. Original data:

  • New South Wales Government. “Returns of convicts applications for wives and families to be brought to New South Wales at Government expense.” Series 1190, Reel 699. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.
  • New South Wales Government. “Persons on bounty ships (Agent’s Immigrant Lists).” Series 5316, Reels 2134-2143. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.
  • New South Wales Government. “Persons on early migrant ships (Fair Copy).” Series 5310, Reel 1286. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.
  • New South Wales Government. “Wage agreements and entitlement certificates of persons on bounty ships (Agent’s Immigrant Lists).” Series 5315, Reels 2449-2456. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.
  • New South Wales Government. “Persons on bounty ships to Sydney, Newcastle, and Moreton Bay (Board’s Immigrant Lists).” Series 5317, Reels 2458-2498. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.
  • New South Wales Government. “Persons on bounty ships arriving at Port Phillip (Agent’s Immigrant Lists).” Series 5318, Reels 2143A-2145. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.
  • New South Wales Government. “Passengers arriving at Sydney 1846 (Agent’s Immigrant Lists).” Series 5326, Reel 2457. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.
  • New South Wales Government. “Germans on bounty ships.” Series 5320, Reel 851. State Records Authority of New South Wales, Kingswood, New South Wales.

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