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McEwan/McQueen/McQuin/Quin/Quinn or Quien? #52ancestors

November 21, 2020

Professional genealogist and podcaster, Amy Johnson Crow has put out the challenge to genealogists and family historians, to write stories about 52 of their ancestors in 52 weeks. I am happily taking up the challenge, and look forward to writing stories, that will collate many years of research results. In most cases, the research for my ancestors is not complete, and possibly never will be complete, but I’m hoping to build a story of the lives they lived with the information I have to hand.

I hope to compile the posts published for the 52 ancestors in 52 weeks Challenge into a book.

Week 46

The names in the title are all the ways this family have spelt their name over the years – McEwan/McQueen/McQuin/Quin/Quinn or Quien?

James McEWAN

James McEWAN, from Scotland, was a Corporal, in the 33rd Regiment of the British Army, between the years of 1822-1826.

While serving in the military, James married Susanna Jackson on 16 January 1825 at Trelawny, Cornwall, Jamaica. The couple had three sons:

  • Thomas James Jonathan born in 1824 and baptised on the day that his parents were married.
  • James born 1826
  • John Alexander born 10 November 1830

Settling in Australia

The McEwan family left Jamaica to settle in Australia. The family sailed from Jamaica to London first, before they departed for Australia on the ship ‘Lavinia’. They sailed from Liverpool on 10 June 1832, on the ship “Lavinia” which departed on 10 June 1832. The voyage went via the Cape of Good Hope, arriving in Hobart, where the McEwan family disembarked, on 28.11.1832. The Lavinia then continued on to Port Jackson, arriving on 6 December 1832. The Lavinia was a 300t barque, sailed by Captain W.T. Gray.

James McEwan’s name is recorded in the ship’s passenger list, but the rest of the family are recorded as the McEwan family.

Thomas James Jonathan McEWAN – My great great grandfather

Eventually, Thomas settled in Launceston, Tasmania, where he worked as a carpenter and a house painter.

On 26 October 1844, he married Janet YOUNG who had emigrated to Australia from Scotland. Janet was also known as Jeanette.

Thomas and Janet had ten children, five boys and five girls, over a period of fourteen years.

The first two children were born in Launceston. Sometime between 1845 and 1848, the family relocated to Melbourne. They lived in Collingwood for many years, with the subsequent children, excepting for the last, being born there. The youngest child was born at Fitzroy.

The eldest son, Alexander was accidentally drowned on 01 December 1854 in the water race that supplied the water works, at the east end of Flinders Street, Melbourne.

Thomas James Jonathan McQUEEN died at Hodgton Street, Fitzroy on 21 July 1863. At the time of his death, his youngest child Emily was one year old. I believe my grandmother Emily TAYLOR was named after Emily who was her aunt.

Thomas’ wife Janet used the name ‘McEwan’ after the death of her husband. So far I have found no evidence of this name being used during their marriage, though Thomas’ father, James, used the name McEwan.

Thomas was buried at the Melbourne General Cemetary on 22 July 1863, in a family plot. Also buried in the plot are:

  • Alexander McQUINN died November 1854, aged 10 years. (His son)
  • Jeanette McQUINN died December 1854, aged 2 years. ( His daughter)
  • Emily died November 1863, aged 1 year. (His daughter)
  • Janet LOVELACE died July 1867 (His grandchild, who died in infancy. Parents were his daughter Sarah Annie and Benjamin LOVELACE).
  • Isabella LOVELACE, died February 1874 (Died aged 1 year. Sister of Janet, above)
  • Edward LOVELACE, died December 1875, aged 4 years (Sister of Janet and Isabella, above)
  • Ellen LOVELACE, died September 1878, died in infancy (Sister of Janet, Isabella and Edward, above)

    My research into James McEwan is very sparse and patchy. There are many questions to answer and much more infomation to find. This is just a basic outline of the confirmed information to hand at the moment. Until now, I’ve only spent a small amount of time on researching this line.

McEWAN James, List of Soldiers:

MARRIAGE, McEWAN James and JACKSON Susanna: (Caribbean Marriages 1591-1905: Jamaica Easy System Batch No. 104099-9 Film 1291671).

BAPTISM, McEWAN Thomas James Jonathan: Jamaica Births and Baptisms 1752 ’96 1920: Jamaica Easy System Batch No. 104099-9 Film 1291671).

“McEwan, James, CC (Thomas, infant son) 16/1/1825, Trelawny, Corporal 33rd Regiment”. –

BAPTISM, McEWAN John Alexander: (Jamaica Births and Baptisms 1752 ’96 1920: Jamaica Easy System Batch No. 103863-0 Film 1291711).

NSW Passengers List ’96 Assisted Immigrants Passengers 1828-1896 Film 1 Page 3

SHIP LAVINIA: httpp://

SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1832, December 10). The Sydney Herald (NSW : 1831 – 1842), p. 2. Retrieved November 20, 2020, from

McEWAN Thomas James Jonathan: Jamaica Births and Baptisms 1752 ’96 1920: Jamaica Easy System Batch No. 104099-9 Film 1291671).

McEWAN John Alexander: Jamaica Births and Baptisms 1752 ’96 1920: Jamaica Easy System Batch No. 103863-0 Film 1291711).

Personal Communications from fellow family historian Marcia Howe.

©2020 copyright. All rights reserved

From → family history

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