THE COUNSELS OF DROMANA AND SOMERVILLE, MORNINGTON PENINSULA, VIC., AUST.
From my CHRONOLOGY OF BURIALS AT DROMANA (on ITELLYA'S HISTORY STORAGE BOX Facebook page due to difficulties submitting in the journal.)
24-10-1947. MISS CATHERINE COUNSEL.
COUNSEL.-Requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of the late Miss CATHERINE COUNSEL will be celebrated at the Church of the Immaculate Conception,corner Glenferrie and Burwood roads. Haw-thorn. TOMORROW (Friday) at 9 a.m.The Funeral will leave the church at the conclusion of Mass for the Dromana Cemetery, arriving there at 11.30 a.m.
COUNSEL. — On October 21. At 6 Wattle-road. Hawthorn, Catherine, only daughter of the late Frank and Anne Counsel,loved sister of France (deceased). Late of Dromana. Requiescat In pace. (Both, P.9, The Age, 23-10-1947.)
"In the 1860's, William Grace grew grapes for the manufacture of wine (on "Gracefield.) Several members of the Counsel family tended his vines, which, it was said, were ruined by phyllooxera.(P. 39, A DREAMTIME OF DROMANA.)
Joseph Lawrence Counsel and his wife, Mary Cecilia, were certainly residents of the area before 1878. (Source not quoted for a reason.) In 1879, (and probably till 1884*) Richard Councel was assessed on 250 acres which was certainly "Gracefield" and Charles B.Counsel on 454 acres and buildings, Kangerong. Charles had received the grant for crown allotment 21A, Kangerong of 121 acres 1 rood 27 perches on 27-6-1876. It was north of Mclroys Rd and east of Bowrings Rd with Melway 161 D10 indicating its northern portion. Charles was probably leasing land to the west later granted to Thomas Appleyard.
FROM MY GRACEFIELD JOURNAL.
Gracefield, crown allotment 5, section 3, of 249 acres 1 rood and 34 perches (249.4625 acres) was granted to William Grace.It was bounded by Boundary Rd, with 291 Boundary Rd indicating its south east corner, Arthurs Seat Rd and Caldwell Rd.
In 1872, Richard Counsel was assessed on 250 acres and a 5 roomed house. His assessment in the previous year had been on 121 acres, almost certainly crown allotment 21A, Kangerong of 121 acres 1 rood and 27 perches, granted to C.Counsel on 27-6-1876, and fronting the north side of McIlroys Rd (No. 146) and including Melway 161 D10.
In 1884 James McKeown was assessed on 215 acres,Balnarring (i.e. 73 A and B, later known as Glenbower,the name of McKeown's house, and Wildwood.) *In 1885, he was assessed on 250 acres, Kangerong (Gracefield) having sold his Balnarring land to the Sheehan family.
Charles B.Counsel was Richard's son and the sister of Catherine who died in 1839 (according to http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/…/…/2004-04/1081991509) after whom Frank's daughter was probably named. Had the Counsels come from Tasmania? Obviously.
Richard Counsel married Catherine Doyle in Hobart - 1834.*
The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954) Thursday 10 May 1883 p 1 Family Notices
... Montana " COUNSEL-MORRIS -April 9, 1883, at Hawthorn, Victoria, by the Rev. E. Nolan, S.J., Charles B. Counsel, Dromana, youngest son of Richard Counsel, Emerald Hill (late chief draughtsman Crown Lands), to Kate Louise, youngest daughter of the late Captain James Morris, of Hobart,
Their fifth child "John Francis Counsel 1847 - 1930 married Ann Counsel 1875*" was certainly the late Miss Catherine Counsel's father (see death notice.)
* From the same rootsweb thread.
At the age of about 48 Frank Counsel's chess war with Joseph William Hazledine (retired Rosebud teacher and now Dromana's Registrar) began, and continued for years on the chessboard and in the Mornington Standard.
Mr. Frank Counsel, of Dromana, who issued through these columns, a challenge to play any lady or gentleman in the Shire of Flinders and Kangerong, best three out of five games, for the "chess championship" of the
shire, had not to wait long for an accepted (sic, acceptance) of his challenge. Mr. J. W.Hazledine of the same town expressed his desire to meet Mr. Counsel, and the contest took place last week at Arthur's Seat Hotel, one game being played each evening. The result was that Mr.Hazledine succeeded in winning the first, fourth, and fifth games, whilst the other two were won by Mr.. Counsel.
'Mr. Hazledine was adjudged the winner by Mr. L. Murphy, who acted as referee.
(P.3, Mornington Standard, 28-11-1895.)
By 1910, Frank was waging another war- against Mt Cooke's fervent support of Mr Irvine in the seat of Flinders in the pages of the Mornington Standard. Frank seems to have been very well educated and it shows in his many letters to the editor concerning politics.
Miss Catherine's namesake aunt was one of Richard Counsel's two daughters who became nuns (according to the rootsweb information.)
The habit was assumed by Miss Catherine Counsel and Miss Margaret Doogan, both also natives of Victoria. Miss Counsel is third daughter of Richard Counsel, Esq., late chief draughtsman in the Crown Lands Offices; she is cousin to L.Counsel, Esq., Collector of Inland Revenues for Ireland, and also to P.Sarsfield Counsel, Esq., B.A., barrister-at-law, Trinity College, Dublin. She takes in religion the name of Sister Mary of St. Ignatius,(P.14, Advocate, 28-8-1875.)
Sister Mary did die in 1939 as claimed on the rootsweb page.
Recent Death SISTER MARY OF ST. IGNATIUS
Advocate (Melbourne, Vic. : 1868 - 1954) Thursday 1 June 1939 p 34 Article
... Recent Death SISTER MARY OF ST. IGNATIUS The Good Shepherd Convent, Abbotsford, lost one of the ... oldest members of the Community on May 23, when Sister Mary of St. Ignatius Counsel was called to her .
Richard Counsel probably lived at Emerald Hill while working at the Crown Lands Department but his fondness for a drink led to his dismissal in 1878. The obituary of Charles Bede Counsel gives interesting information about Charles and his father.
MR. CHARLES BEDE COUNSEL
On Wednesday, June 21, the funeral took place at the Springvale Cemetery of Mr. Charles Bede Counsel, the last surviving son of the late Richard Counsel, who was brought from Ireland by the Government to survey the greater part of South Australia.
Born in Adelaide, Mr. Counsel came to Victoria at the age of five years and remained here up to the time of his death. Mr. Counsel was very successful as an auctioneer and estate agent, and, later, was a most popular representative of some of the leading firms of Melbourne, and was a member of the Commercial Travellers' Association for about forty years.
His popularity as a lecturer and elocutionist was very great. At the age of fifteen years he was chosen from all scholars of the public schools to recite the ode of welcome to the Duke of Edinburgh in the year 1867, as recorded in the "Argus" of that date. The late Mr. Counsel was educated at St. Patrick's College, East Melbourne, and his last public appearance was at the dinner tendered to Cardinal MacRory, when,being the oldest member of the college,he was called upon to present his Eminence with a souvenir of his visit to Victoria.
Owing to severe reverses in the land boom, the latter part of his life was spent in retirement. He is survived by his widow and grown-up family. His remains were borne from St. Joseph's Church, Malvern, by his son and grandsons at the end of the Requiem Mass, which was served by his youngest grandson, John Walsh. His sister, the late Sister Ignatius, who was 65 years in the Abbotsford Convent,predeceased him three weeks ago.
R.I.P. (P.26, Advocate, 6-7-1939.)
THE COUNSELS OF SOMERVILLE.
The Counsel mystery deepened when I found that a Richard Counsel had died at Somerville, an Edward Counsel of the same place was a composer and that the bones of a Miss Catherine Counsel had been stolen from Trafalgar cemetery.
I went back to the rootsweb post and confirmed that the Somerville Counsels were related to the Dromana family.
"Researching the descendants of Laurence Counsel & Mary Tierney married circa 1790 - Louth? - Ireland.
Children: Richard, Peter, Ann, Judith & Lawrence arrived Tasmania "Norval" 1832. Another son Loughlin arrived Victoria mid 1800's with I believe, 2 of his children plus some nieces/nephews."
Next I googled EDWARD COUNSEL, SOMERVILLE and the fragments fell into place.
The Sad Life (and Death) of Kitty Counsel | Gippsland| Odd Australian ...
"Miss Catherine Mary Counsel was a tiny, sweet natured and deeply religious woman who spent most of her life as a housekeeper for wealthy families in and around Melbourne. Known as Kitty by her friends, her life was inconspicuous, she is never mentioned in newspapers, difficult to find in electoral rolls and barely rates a mention in death notices. Her life may have not have been noteworthy but it was the bizarre happenings after her death that caused me to research this diminutive lady.
Little Kitty came from a well respected family.* Although of Irish stock her grandfather, Loughlin Counsel was a surveyor and civil engineer in Southampton. His father and siblings had emigrated to Australia in the early 1800s, settling mainly in Tasmania but Loughlin and his family but didn’t arrive until the mid 1850’s. Kitty’s cousin was Edward Albert Counsel who became a surveyor, civil engineer and administrator in the Apple Isle.
Kitty’s father, Edward Counsel, was difficult to track at first, but eventually I discovered that he was a writer and musician. In 1875 at the age of 42, he married a relation of his stepsister’s, a musician by the name of Mary Josephine Gannon at Ballarat. In 1880 they had their first child, Edward Loughlin who sadly died at 4 months old. In 1882 they were graced with their second and only child to reach maturity, Kitty.
MaximsToday, Edward is considered a philosophical genius and his book which he published in 1889 called, Maxims: Political, Philosophical and Moral is considered a masterpiece. Some of his famous quotes include: “We live as we die, and die as we live”, “Reason often overturns experience” and “Success is a hidden jewel, and is found but by a few.” With his wife Mary, he also wrote numerous musical scores, including The Melodies of Erin. Although brilliant, his work was never fully recognised during his lifetime and it seems that his daughter never received any royalties or payment during her lifetime.
Edward’s father (Kitty’s grandfather) was Loughlin Counsel who had extensive land holdings in the Somerville area of the Mornington Peninsula. Loughlin passed away in 1875 and left more than 1000 acres to his children and stepchildren. Edward was the beneficiary of 213 acres plus a large number of shares in The Colonial Bank of Australasia.
After Edward and Mary’s wedding, they moved to Somerville and it was there that little Kitty was born. When Kitty was 12 years old her mother died and Edward seemed to become unhinged, writing rambling letters to local councils and newspapers. Shortly afterwards he simply stopped writing altogether. Edward passed away in 1909 in Somerville and his death was barely noted in the newspapers. I can’t find a will for Edward so I have no idea what became of his land or property but by 1909 Kitty was working as a housekeeper in Surrey Hills.
From this moment on, Kitty’s life was one of predictability. She worked as a housekeeper in Surrey Hills until 1924. In 1931 she is on the electoral roll in Kew and her occupation is listed as household duties. In 1949 she was working for a family in the Hampton/ Brighton area. In 1954, she was housekeeping for a young parish priest by the name of Father Daly at Orbost in eastern Victoria. In 1955 when Father Daly was transferred to Trafalgar, Kitty went with him. In February of 1955, at the age of 73, she was admitted to the West Gippsland Hospital in Warragul having suffered a stroke. A few days later she died and was buried at the Trafalgar Cemetery.
It was after Kitty’s death that her story becomes rather strange. " etc.
One interesting point was that Frank and Ann Counsel, whose daughter's burial started this voyage of discovery, were wrongly recorded as Kitty's parents.
on 2016-07-10 21:59:38
Itellya is researching local history on the Mornington Peninsula and is willing to help family historians with information about the area between Somerville and Blairgowrie. He has extensive information about Henry Gomm of Somerville, Joseph Porta (Victoria's first bellows manufacturer) and Captain Adams of Rosebud.