Ann EATHER 1793-1865
Ann EATHER the first born of Thomas EATHER and Elizabeth, nee Lee was born on the 18 April 1793 at Parramatta, New South Wales.Ann was baptised on the 5 May 1793 long before the parish of St John had been established and before a proper Church had been erected at Parramatta.The only clergyman in the colony was the Reverend Richard JOHNSON who had come out with the First Fleet.
When she was four years of age, Ann EATHER moved with her parents and younger brother and sister, Robert and Charlotte, to the land grant in the bushland near the Hawkesbury River at Mulgrave Place. There her father was setting about converting the virgin scrub into a farm. It was there, under primitive conditions, that Ann spent her childhood. Her playmates of those years were an increasing number of younger brothers and sisters, and by the time that she reached the age of fourteen she was the eldest of seven children. Another brother was born after she married. Undoubtedly, Ann had very little formal education during her childhood, living as she did in a community that was largely illiterate, and at a distance from the townships of Sydney and Parramatta. Formal education in the environment of the day was restricted to the children of the few farmers who were sufficiently wealthy as to be able to employ the services of tutors. Nevertheless, it appears that Ann did not grow up completely illiterate. In adult life she was able at least to sign her name upon documents. Ann did not have to wait long for matrimony to come her way. In a community that was still short of eligible spinsters, most girls tended to find husbands while still in their teenage years. About the age of sixteen Ann EATHER became the wife of Joseph ONUS 1782-1835 , a convict who was then about the age of twenty-nine years. Whether Joseph and Ann had a wedding ceremony will probably never be known. There is no record of their marriage in any of the Church registers then in the colony. However, this lack of the record of such an event does not necessarily mean that theirs was a de facto relationship, as the Church registers of those years prior to 1830 are known to be wanting in many instances.Of the six children of Joseph and Ann, only two are listed in the births index of the New South Wales Registrar-General's Department. It was about 1809 that Ann EATHER became the wife of Joseph ONUS and from then until 1835 her life story runs parallel to that of her husband.
The children Of Ann EATHER and Joseph ONUS were:-
1.Elizabeth ONUS 1811 – 1882 m. John Gordon TOWN 1806-1843
John Thomas TOWN 1831–1889
Elizabeth Jessie TOWN 1833-1908
William Barker TOWN 1836–1838
William Gordon TOWN 1838–1858
Mary Ann TOWN 1842–1846
2.Mary Ann ONUS 1813 – 1887 m John EATON 1811-1904
Mary M EATON 1831–1831
Ann EATON 1833–1924
Mary Ann Elizabeth EATON 1835–1870
Jane EATON 1837–1872
Elizabeth Mary EATON 1839–1933
Susannah EATON 1842–1937
Charlotta EATON 1844–1923
Infant EATON 1846 – 1846
William EATON 1847–1887
Caroline EATON 1850 – 1850
Martha Mary Richmond EATON 1851–1931
Euphemia EATON 1854–1939
Veronica EATON 1854–1942
3.Susannah ONUS 1815 – 1882 m. William Glas MCALPIN 1810-1902
Elizabeth MCALPIN 1833–1835
Ann McALPIN 1836 – 1838
Peter McALPIN 1838–1838
William McALPIN 1840–1923
Susannah McALPIN 1842–1882
Sarah McALPIN 1845–1922
Joseph McALPIN 1849–1913
Mary McALPIN 1852–1915
4.Joseph ONUS 1818 – 1895elected Mayor of Richmond 1875
m.(1) Margaret SILK 1824-1884
1 child; Maria Emma SILK 1841 – 1883
(2) Emma POWELL 1819-1865
Mary Ann ONUS 1838–1861
Joseph Edward ONUS 1840–1891
Emma Susannah ONUS 1843–1931
Joseph Tertius ONUS 1844–1928
Laura Australia ONUS 1854–1855
(3) Clara HUNT 1820.
1 child; Linda ONUS 1869 – 1894
5.Thomas ONUS 1820 – 1855 m. Elizabeth EATHER 1824-1884
Ann ONUS 1842–1905
Sarah ONUS 1845–1910
Susannah ONUS 1847–1935
Thomas Alexander ONUS 1849–1934
Matilda J ONUS 1852–1853
Elizabeth A ONUS 1854 – 1855
+1 child from relationship with Eliza JAMES 1819-1862
Ann ONUS 1841-1927
6.William ONUS 1822 – 1855 m. Ann HOUGH 1822-1889
Joseph ONUS 1844–1928
William ONUS 1846–1913
Elizabeth ONUS 1848–1892
Emily A ONUS 1851–1907
Andrew ONUS 1853–1855
Joseph ONUS died on the 22 June 1835 leaving Ann a very wealthy woman according to the terms of his Last Will and Testament.
On 14 February 1837, approximately twenty months after the death of Joseph ONUS, his widow Ann, married again in a ceremony held in St Matthew's Church at Windsor. Her second husband was William SHARP, a widower without any children. Ann was 43 and William only 26. A number of relatives and friends were present at the ceremony and no fewer than five signed the register as witnesses to the event. They were Thomas EATHER and his wife, Sarah EATHER; John TOWN, son-in-law of the bride; Susannah McALPIN, daughter of the bride; and Mary SHARP, a relative of the groom. The Reverend H T STILES conducted the ceremony. William SHARP had been born at Parramatta on 6 November 1810, the fifth child and fourth son of Thomas SHARP and his wife, Martha BURRELL. He had married Sarah REEVES, but she had died. His father, Thomas SHARP, had been born circa 1775 at Honeybow in the English county of Gloucestershire. He had enlisted in the New South Wales Corps as a private, and arrived in the colony on the ship "Sugar Cane" on 17 September 1793. Upon arrival he was stationed at Parramatta and lived there until about 1814. In 1800 he had assigned to him Martha BURRELL, who had arrived in the colony on the ship "Speedy" on 11 April 1800. She had been born circa 1775 in Surrey, England, and had been tried there and sentenced to seven years transportation in January 1796. She brought to the colony with her her son, John BURRELL, born in 1798 while she was in prison. In the period between 1801 and 1821, Thomas and Martha had a family of eight children; the first six being born at Parramatta and the last two at Richmond. They married at St Phillip's Church, Sydney on 13 March 1810, although they were at that time still residing at Parramatta. By the time of the 1814 muster, they were living in the Hawkesbury district and were still there in 1822. Thomas was still a soldier and at that time a member of the 102 Regiment. He died on 30 January 1823 at Richmond and was buried in St Peter's Cemetery. At the time of the 1828 census, his widow, Martha, was living with James PAGET. She lived to see the two daughters of her son, William, before she died at her home in Richmond on 14 November 1852, almost thirty years after the death of Thomas. She had been pre-deceased by two of her daughters and one son. In her decision to marry again, Ann was evidently undeterred by the stipulation in her first husband's will that, upon so doing, she would forfeit the family home. Her son William was still a minor and could not inherit it until he was 21. Technically, upon her marriage, the house passed to her eldest son, Joseph, to hold in trust until William turned 21, but he too was still a minor. Undoubtedly a satisfactory arrangement was worked out whereby Ann and her new husband resided in the house along with her sons until they eventually married and moved into homes of their own. As far as it is possible to ascertain, Ann and William resided in the house until her death in 1865, and by then her son, William, was already deceased. William SHARP continued to reside there for many years after he became a widower again, but eventually the house became the home of William ONUS's elder son, Joseph, as it rightfully should have.
In 1843 Ann SHARP turned fifty. With all six children of her first marriage now wedded and raising families of their own, she probably felt a great deal of contentment and satisfaction. She was now one of the senior citizens of Richmond, the town that had not existed when she was first married. She was surrounded by numerous relatives. Nearby, in the town, was her brother,Thomas, landlord of the "Union Inn", and also her youngest brother, James, now a married man with several young children and earning his living as a wheelwright. Just down the road at "Agnes Bank" was her sister, Charlotte, now remarried to William MALONEY. Up in the hills above North Richmond, each with a spouse and children, there dwelt on their respective farms, eldest brother, Robert and youngest sister, Rachel. The latter had returned to the district only two years
previously after having lived for seven years at Hobart Town in Tasmania. Over at Cornwallis near Windsor on another farm was another brother, Charles, with his wife and younger children, and somewhere around the district was her other brother, John, now nearly forty and still unmarried.
Now and then Ann would make the journey by cart to Windsor to visit her aged mother, the matriarch of an increasing number of descendants in three generations. Ann now saw less of her daughter, Mary Ann, who had ceased the practice of coming home from the Hunter Valley for the births of her children. Patrick's Plains and the Wollombi were now well-populated and the township of Singleton was taking shape. Mary Ann's last two daughters had been born at home at Bulga. Eldest daughter, Elizabeth, was living close by at North Richmond, where her husband, John TOWN, had several farms along Wheeney Creek. Youngest daughter, Susannah, was also living close by in Richmond, but before long she was to move out over the hills with William and their children to take up farming at Bulga close by Mary Ann and John EATON.
If Ann SHARP had caused some raised eyebrows in Richmond in 1842 when she had a baby at the age of forty-eight, she must have caused some stifled gasps of surprise when she gave birth to yet another daughter on 11 May 1845, a fortnight after she turned fifty-two. This is the oldest at which any member of the EATHER family is known to have given birth to a child. The period of time between the births of Ann's first and last children - thirty-four years - is probably another family record, on the female side at least.
The children of Ann and William SHARP were:-
Ann Elizabeth SHARP 1842 – 1902 m.
Richard John AINSWORTH 1834-1896
Martha Mary Ann SHARP 1845 – 1908 m.
Arthur Phillip MCMANIS 1836-1918
Part of the above I sourced from
John St PIERRE, writer of
Thomas and Elizabeth Eather
for the EATHER Family history committee.