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April A-Z Challenge – K for Bridget Berlinda Kennedy

April 15, 2017

The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge is a challenge put out to bloggers to publish a post from A-Z every day in April, except for Sundays. April 1 is A, and so on throughout the month. Bloggers can post randomly or on a theme. The theme I have chosen is ‘My Ancestors’. I used this same theme for the Blogging from A-Z April Challenge in 2015. This time the ancestors posted about will mostly be more distant members of the family. Hopefully, when combined this will form a full picture of my family history.

BRIDGET BERLINDA KENNEDY, my great great great grandmother, was born in 1817 in Ireland.  On 3 February 1836, Bridget married James Lowe in Hobart, Tasmania. There is evidence that Bridget went by the name of Berlinda. This unusual spelling was repeated in our family.

Just a few months before the marriage, Bridget was to sue James for breach of promise.

The following report is from The Tasmanian, October 23, 1835, page 5


KENNEDY v. LOWE. This was an action brought for a breach of promise of marriage by the plaintiff, Belinda Kennedy, against James Lowe, the defendant in this action. Mr.. Attorney General appeared for the plaintiff, who stated that the defendant had a short time since, he believed, gone to Sydney, although he had previously been served with notice of this action, and he had suffered judgment to go by default. After explaining the nature of the case, he called— William Marks, who deposed, that he knew Belinda Kennedy the plaintiff, and James Lowe, the defendant. Plaintiff was in the service of Mr. H. Bilton as housemaid. Witness was also in Mr. Bilton’s service. Defendant had been paying his addresses to plaintiff for twelve months before she left Mr. Bilton’s, which is about two months ago. He appeared to be very, fond of her until within the last three months, when he did not appear to be so attentive. The last time witness had any conversation with defendant, he (witness) told him that as he had got the girl into trouble, he ought to get her out of it. Defendant made light of it, and said it was not the same here as in England, and they could not make him pay for the child. He said his father was going to set him up in business, and he would marry the girl in September, but he (witness) was not to tell her so, but to keep the secret. Defendant is twenty one, and the girl is 18. Thinks defendant is gone to Sydney. Mr. Henry Bilton.—Knew of the courtship; defendant’s visits were not clandestine; plaintiff had been in his service eighteen months. She left about eighteen months ago in consequence of her own wish. She was a very respectable girl and the best servant he ever had for honesty, industry and sobriety. Defendant lived with his father as a clerk.  Verdict for the plaintiff. Damages £200

James and Bridget married in Hobart, just four months after the court action and went on to have eight children. The first born, Ellen Virginia was my great great grandmother who married JOSEPH HENRY JONES.

Bridget died on 22 May 1851 and is buried in St. Mary’s churchyard, Hobart.



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