Connection between Isabella Syme, b. 1834 in Edinburgh, Scotland, and Euphemia Bowes nee Allen b. abt 1816 Scotland

+4 votes
My g-g-grandmother came to Australia in 1853. The immigration records state that she went to live with her Aunt, Euphemia Bowes nee Allen after the death of Isabellas mother. I have been unable to find the actual connection. I have different spellings of both surnames Allan and Allen, but what other info I have is viewable on their respective Wikitree profiles (below).

Isabellas parents were Thomas Syme and Christian Allan.

According to the Australian Dictionary of Biography Euphemias father was Joseph Allen. NSW BDM has no listing of parents.

My initial thoughts were that Christian and Euphemia were sisters, but I have been unable to find corroborating evidence. Have searched Scotlands People (but it gets expensive)

Here are the 2 profiles with more info (on Wikitree)

Any help would be appreciated. Anyone in Edinburgh who can do some research for me?

Thanks for reading
in Genealogy Help by Paul Bech G2G6 Mach 7 (75.7k points)
Nice profile pages. They, other websites, are quoting/sourcing you.

1 Answer

+1 vote

Hi Paul

Have you checked out

There you will see that Isabella dies 31 years after Euphemia Bowes so there is a fair chance that she regarded Euphemia as her aunt.

Euphemia Bowes father is quoted as being Joseph Allen.

If Joseph Allen was William Allan's brother then it is quite likely that, as is common within many families, Isabella would refer to Euphemia as Aunt Euphemia.

Also the following will tell you more about Euphemia

Apparently she is also listed in

Australian Dictionary of Biography: 1891-1939, A-CH v. 7

which you may be able to borrow from library.

One other trail you might like to follow concerns Euphemia Allan's full name which was Euphemia Bridges Allen. When I find a name like this I think it is valuable to look for a marrage between a male Allan and a female Bridges. shows this to have been the case where Alexander Allan was married to Marion Bridges. Bridges can probably be found as a middle name down through the family and may have resulted in Euphemia Bridges Allan.

For a time they were living in South Leith which is virtually on top of Edinburgh so I think this could well be worth a punt.


John Shipton

Devon, England

by John Shipton G2G6 Mach 1 (13.7k points)
Thanks for your input John. Most of what you say I was aware of except the South Leith reference. Can you tell me where you know this from?

I am not sure the parents listed in the Australian Dictionary of Biography are correct as I have suspicions from other evidence.

Since my original post I have come across another Allan line from the same streets of Edinburgh which are relations but I also do not know the connection. I have come across an audio recording from a relative (dated about 1990) who was almost 100 years old, who mentioned visiting a sea captain who was a relative in Adelaide who was drowned and whose body was found later under some seaweed on an Adelaide beach. After some investigation i realised it was his wife Margaret Walsh nee Allan from Edinburgh.

I have purchased a few records from Soctlands People to help, but so far not much luck. Allan is a fairly common name, so I spend a lot of time trying to narrow down the possibilities before jumping in and using my credits on a wrong choice.

The 3 lines Euphemia Allen (Allan?), Margaret Allan, and Christian Allan can all be placed within a few streets of each other in Edinburgh. Occupations of shoemaker were common in all the 3 lines as well, and all with life events in Canongate registers.

Again, thanks for the imput.



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