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I am looking for John Stevenson who married Sarah Frances Wild (born Ward) in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia in 1877. He is my great grandfather.

Journal by agentgale

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on 2013-05-22 03:00:27

Stevenson Family Circle, Victoria

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by tonkin on 2013-05-22 04:56:32

Only one marriage for Sarah Frances WARD in 1877.

Groom: Richard WILD.
Birth place: Liverpool.
Bride: Sarah Jane WARD.
Birth place: Collingwood.
Year married: 1877.
Place married: Victoria, Australia.
Ref: Registry of Marriages, Victoria. Reg #1151.

Could Richard WILD and John Stevenson WILD be the same person?

by agentgale on 2013-05-22 05:17:38

You know, as absurd as it seems, it could very well be because there is absolutely 'nothing' regarding John or his parents. Have you a date and place of death for Richard (John)? There are many reasons for name changes and my sister Maree, even asked his grand daughter Beryl, if there may have been a name change. Beryl, my aunt thought that Maree had lost the plot. I am going to send this now and then go to google and see if the person John Stevenson Wild has a trail.

by tonkin on 2013-05-22 05:52:58

Richard WILD and Sarah Frances WARD had seven children between 1877 and 1891.
The father was recorded as Richard WILD for all births.

Richard WILD.
Born: 1877, Carlton, Victoria.

Sarah Elizabeth Stevens WILD.
Born: 1881 Melbourne, Victoria.

William John Stevenson WILD.
Born: 1882 fitzroy, Victoria.

Frances Stevenson WILD. ***
Born: 1884 Fitzroy, Victoria.

George Stevenson WILD.
Born: 1886 Fitzroy, Victoria.

Bessie Stevenson WILD.
Born: 1888 Fitzroy North, Victoria.

James Stevenson WILD.
Born: 1891 North Fitzroy, Victoria.

We now come to this death.

Name: Fanny WILD. ***
Died: 1885 North Fitzroy, Victoria.
Age: 03 months.
Father: John Stevenson WILD.
Mother: Sarah Frances WARD.

I expect Frances and Fanny will be the same person.

But why was the father recorded as John Stevenson WILD and not Richard WILD?

It's possible the informant was confused and gave the wrong name.

Hope these details will assist you in some way.


by tonkin on 2013-05-22 05:57:25

You would have to obtain the 1877 marriage certificate to confirm Richard and Sarah's parents names.

Will see if I can find a few more deaths for you.

by agentgale on 2013-05-22 06:41:55

Thanks for all your hard work.

by janilye on 2013-05-22 11:34:38

Australia Death Index, 1787-1985
about Sarah Frances Stevenson Name: Sarah Frances Stevenson
Death Place: Melbourne, Victoria
Age: 53
Father's Name: Ward Geo
Mother's Name: Sarah Frances
Registration Year: 1916
Registration Place: Victoria
Registration number: 15305
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1863

by janilye on 2013-05-22 12:20:52

As you say Richard could have changed his name but why the first name and keep the name Wild. Doesn't make sense to me.
This is just my idea but looking at it I think that Sarah married Richard Wild and had 1 child, Richard, in 1877 then perhaps husband Richard Wild left home. There is 4 years between the 1st and 2nd. child. So maybe Sarah met John Stephenson and had the other children to him, but because she was still married to Richard Wild she did the next best thing and included Stevenson in their name.
I did find a death for a Richard Wild but not till 1907.
Perhaps Sarah married Stevenson after that date or just merely changed her name.
Australia Death Index, 1787-1985
Name: Richd Wild
Death Place: Highton or Hamilton, Victoria
Age: 75
Registration Year: 1907
Registration Place: Victoria
Registration number: 1518
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1832

by tonkin on 2013-05-22 20:25:04

I came up with the same deaths for Richard WILD and Sarah Frances STEVENSON as Janilye.

Richard died 1907 aged 75 years.
Born circa 1832.
Would have been about 45 years old when married in 1877.

Sarah died 1914 aged 53 years.
Born circa 1861.
Would have been about 16 years old when married in 1877.

This appears to be Sarah's birth.

Name: Sarah Frances WARD.
Born: 1861 Collingwood, Victoria.
Father: George WARD.
Mother: Sarah SMITH.
Ref: Registry of Births, Victoria. Reg #314.

Sarah appears to be George and Sarah's only child.
It looks like George died the same year as Sarah's birth in 1861.

I have searched all the Australian marriages but unable to locate a marriage for John STEVENSON and Sarah WILD or WARD. Another pair of eyes may have better luck.

Does Sarah's death certificate give any clues as to when and where she married John STEVENSON, and what was her status at time of death?

by tonkin on 2013-05-22 21:31:11


Name: William John STEVENSON.
Died: 1973 Kew, Victoria.
Age: 91 years.
Father: John STEVENSON.
Mother: Sarah Frances WARD.
Ref: Registry of Births, Victoria. Reg #15660.

by tonkin on 2013-05-22 21:34:26

Above should be Registry of Deaths, Victoria. Reg #15660.
Hard to find a death in the births.

by tonkin on 2013-05-22 22:22:19


Name: George STEVENSON.
Died: 1965 Thornbury, Victoria.
Age: 78 years.
Father: John STEVENSON.
Mother: Sarah Frances WARD.
Ref: Registry of 'Deaths', Victoria. Reg #5809.

by tonkin on 2013-05-22 23:03:56


Name: Bessie WARD.
Died: 1971 Moor, Victoria.
Age: 81 years.
Father: John STEVENSON.
Mother: Sarah Jane WARD.
Ref: Registry of Deaths, Victoria. Reg #3718.


Groom: George Robert WARD.
Bride: Bessie STEVENSON.
Year married: 1924.
Place: Victoria, Australia.
Ref: Registry of Marriages, Victoria. Reg #13553.

by tonkin on 2013-05-22 23:59:04


Name: Elizabeth BUTLER.
Died: 1948 Footscray, Victoria.
Age: 67 years.
Father: John STEVENSON.
Mother: Sarah Frances WARD.
Ref: Registry of Deaths, Victoria. Reg #2251.


Groom: Walter Henry BUTLER.
Bride: Elizabeth STEVENSON.
Year married: 1900.
Place: Victoria.
Ref: Registry of Marriages, Victoria. Reg #7760.

This Elizabeth STEVENSON may be the Sarah Elizabeth Stevenson WILD
born in 1881.

Going by the few details I picked up today the children dropped the surname of WILD and used the surname of STEVENSON.

I'm thinking Janilye may have hit the nail on the head.

by tonkin on 2013-05-23 00:09:16


Sorry, the correct spelling is BUTTLER with a double T.

I will now go to my corner and write BUTTLER with a double T 100 times.

by agentgale on 2013-05-23 03:53:31

What a can of worms. It is getting better than an Agatha Christie's 'who dunnit'.

by tonkin on 2013-05-23 04:11:52

Every family tree is a can of worms.

This may explain why some family members clam up when asked questions and hide the can opener.

I have a strange way of seeing things.

by agentgale on 2013-05-27 06:01:45

Richard Wild was 24 years Sarah's senior. It appears that she was 17 when she married Richard, making him 41. All the time along, before your summation of the situation, I was quite prepared to go Janilye's direction. Nothing would seem out of the ordinary for Sara to chuck in the old geyser and take up with a young stud. The only real confusion is the Wild name being on the births register and then my great grandfather being called 'Stevenson'. Other family members of the Stevenson's have as much of an idea as we do and they are seemingly tracking ancestry to 'Stephenson'. This is wrong because William John Stevenson, and I remember it clearly, his headstone is spelt 'Stevenson'.

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