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Womens History Month – Martha Annie Lloyd

March 8, 2019

Women’s History Month Blog Challenge

Women’s history month

March is Women’s History Month and genealogy blogger  Alona put out the call to other genealogy and family history bloggers to join her in highlighting the stories of incredible women in history or their female ancestors.
I’m not aware of any of my female ancestors doing anything to make them famous. But I am aware that I have many ordinary but very inspiring female ancestors. These women would never have made news headlines, but to me they were incredible women. There are many otherwise ordinary women in everyone’s family whowere brave enough to start new lives in a new world, that they knew very little about.  They did that in order to give their families a better life.
To honour my female ancestors, I plan to write four posts during March about these wonderful inspiring  women. I thank them for their sacrifice which has led to me living an almost charmed life.

Martha Annie Lloyd

Martha Annie Lloyd was born in 1813 in Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire Wales. She worked as a servant at Hermon’s House in the Parish of St Thomas, Haverfordwest. Martha is my great great grandmother on the paternal side of the family.
In 1839 Martha married John Taylor and over the next two years, gave birth to two boys in Haverfordwest. In 1841 John and Martha made the decision to take their two boys, a baby and a toddler, on the long sea voyage to Australia. This must have been such a difficult decision to make. To leave their families in Wales, knowing they would probably never see them again must have been almost unbearable.  I can only imagine how difficult that long voyage must have been, with two very small children.
The family settled in Diamond Creek, Victoria and Martha went on to have 10 more children. In all Martha gave birth 12 children in 19 years – fours daughters and eight sons. Unusually,for those times of high infant mortality, only two of those children died in their first year. The other children all lived to old age.
I’m sure life wouldn’t have been easy for Martha, raising her large family on the income her husband was able to make as a shepherd. The family would have been living in a tent for quite a long time after their arrival in Australia. Life would have been very bleak in the early years in this country, which makes me wonder how often Martha questioned their decision to leave the country of her birth to start a new life in a new land.
Martha passed away on October 1 1891 at the age of 78. At the time of her death she was living with one of her sons at Bundalong in Victoria, near the NSW border. Her husband John had predeceased her ten years earlier.
Unfortunately I don’t have a photo of Martha. Over the years of researching this family, I feel I’ve come to know Martha very well and  a picture of her has formed in my mind. I live in hope that one day a descendant of Martha’s will unearth that elusive photo and share it with me,

From → family history

  1. Sarah Bell permalink

    Great post! I’m not sure if we’re connected, but my maternal great great grandfather was John Robert LLOYD. He was born at Kangaroo Creek, the son of Jeremiah LLOYD and Caroline LAMBERT. He first married Maria GREEN and had two children with her at Moama. She passed away from complications with their second child. John then went to NZ and married twice more, fathering many children. I don’t think they were from Wales, Jeremiah was apparently from Bergh Apton in Norfolk. So interesting reading and learning about those early gold mining days in Victoria!

  2. Jennifer, Visiting this time via the GeneaBloggersTribe post. I cannot even imagine giving birth to 12 children. How frustrating not having a photograph, like many of my ancestors they must have been too busy or perhaps too poor to sit around having photos taken. Fran

  3. Thanks for visiting again Fran. 19th century photos are quite rare in my family history. I think there were more important things to worry about. And all those children to care for

    • Jennifer, even when we do discover information, it is almost always written with the husband as the focus. Recently, I found an obituary where the son’s name was written in full, and the three daughters were written as Mrs. (husband’s name). They were often the backbones of their families, and sometimes didn’t even have names. Thank you for telling their stories!

  4. Wow, travelling with a a baby and a toddler to the other side of the world, 19th-century style. Brave people.

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