Details on Florence May Shanahan

+2 votes
Can anyone help me with the search on Florence May Shanahan. She was born on 1st June 1894 and died on 25th January 1968.I am having a lot of difficulty in finding who her parents are. Can anyone helpme? Mike Clarke
WikiTree profile: Florence White
in Genealogy Help by Michael Clarke G2G1 (1.6k points)
Father is John, mother is Bridget.  BDM online spells it Shanahan, rather than with a double-n.
Also, you will find that quite often a "Bridget" was also known as "Mary".
Also, also -- the date in the data field is 1884, but in the research note it says 1894.

I'm pretty sure if her name was Shanahan/Shannahan her father would not be George Pountly as said in the Biography.

The second marriage to Frederick White was registered in 1959, not 1962.  Reg# 5467/1959 (Her name is rendered as Florence Mary, not Florence May .. but that's pretty normal.)

Birth Reg# 27269/1884 (as already said, parents John and Bridget (possibly Bridget Mary, or Mary Bridget))

Death Reg# 17733/1968 (parents John and Mary)

It is looks as though her parents were the John Shanahan and Bridget O'Donnell who married in 1876 (Reg# 3135/1876)

It looks as though Florence was one of seven: Catherine Elizabeth (1876) Mary Agnes (1878) Emily Theresa (1879) Frances Lilia - possibly meant to be Lilian (1881) John Patrick(1883) Florence (1884) and Bridget G (1885)

Hello Melanie, Many thanks for all your information. I am Florence May's grandson and my mum, Marie Alice Walsh-Torr is one of Florence's two daughters to Walter William Walsh. I know Gay (Florence's nick name and everyone called her this) was in her 80's when she died so I would be pretty certain that her birth was 1884. Without being rude, how certain are you of the information you sent me. I am still learning the ropes of the Family Tree business.

Regards  Mike

As sure as I can be without actually buying the certificates.

The profile has inconsistencies (mentioned already -- the birth date in the data field and the first part of the biography being not the same as that in the research note - the father's last name being not Shanahan/Shannahan) that have to make you look further.  (The Walsh-Torr also made me look harder.)

Transcribers often get thing wrong, because handwritten records can be very difficult to decipher, so you will see things such as "May" when it was "Mary", or "Mary" when it was "May".  (I have run across some pretty atrocious renditions of names - my own gr-gran is one such.)  Unless you can afford to buy all the documents, or can get access to them by visiting the repository (which I used to do with my Mum when had access to Brisbane) you have to be able to put 2 and 2 together and be sure you get 4, not 7.

You will find many Irish women, in particular, will go by a Baptismal name, rather than a given name - or a confirmation name (usually a saint, or Mary).  Then, too, are the use-names, such as your Gran using "Gay" - which has no apparent relationship to her given names (my Mum was known by a name in the WAAAF that was not, in any way, related to her given names), where keeping track of people is harder.

You don't have to take my word for it - in fact, I encourage you to check for yourself - but I spent several hours looking into it, double-checking (the Victorian BDM was down and I couldn't work on my line).  If you want certainty, you need to already know the answer, already have documents, buy the record/s, or be/go to where the records are held to view them yourself.  Otherwise it really is a case of ruling OUT what cannot be, until you have left over what may, possibly, be.

Even after I found proof my grX3grand was Irish, I kept checking for some proof -- any proof -- it was otherwise, because what I "knew" was that he was Scottish.  Even my cousin - when doing the family history stuff as required by his church - did not find this, nor did he find my Swedish gr-grand's birth in Sweden (he, the cousin, still had him as England-born).

Research, eliminate, don't lock-in on family stories as they're not always accurate (although they may have grains of truth .. I confirmed a family "legend" by accepting the evidence I found and tracking it all the way).

I'm also not saying I can't be wrong, or that I never make mistakes,  I can be very wrong .. and I have made mistakes along the way.  But I work hard to correct those mistakes .. and I never present something as 100% sure, unless I am 100% sure.  (I'll hedge it by saying "I'm not sure, but .. .." or "I may be wrong, but I found this .. .." and suchlike.)

Further to my above essay (sorry about that, I tend to get wordy), there is this:

Unless she was adopted, she can NOT have been the daughter of George Pountley and Alice Bailey AND also Charles Shanahan and Rosey E. unknown.

The date (the year, at least - I can probably get the full date as well) for the second marriage to Fred White is easily found: New South Wales BDM reg # 467/1959, WHITE, FREDERICK JOSEPH; WALSH-TORR, FLORENCE MARY; HAMILTON (Note that Hamilton isn't where the event took place.  It is the registration district.)  It would not have been registered in 1959, if it happened in 1962.  (The reverse is not true.  Events can sometimes have a delayed registration, especially at the end of a year.)

1 Answer

+4 votes
Hopefully the following will help you out...


Link/Source: Victoria, Australia, Birth Index, 1837-1917

Name: Florence Mary Shanahan
Birth Registration Date: 1884
Birth Registration Place: Victoria, Australia
Father: Cornelius Shanahan
Mother Maiden Name: Hayes
Reference Number: 23714


Source/Link: Australia, Birth Index, 1788-1922

Name:  Florence Mary Shanahan
Birth Date: Abt 1884
Birth Place: Collingwood, Victoria
Registration Year: 1884
Registration Place: Victoria, Australia
Father: Cornelius Shanahan
Mother: Annie Hayes
Registration Number: 23714


Hopefully this was helpful for you in some way...

Enjoy and Good Luck! :-)

~Brian Kerr
by Anonymous Kerr G2G6 Pilot (309k points)

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