Mid North Coast Pioneers - Newcastle to Lismore and beyond

St. John's Cemetery, Parramatta, NSW

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St. John's Cemetery, Parramatta, NSW

Extracts from “The Parramatta Cemeteries - St John's" by Judith Dunn of the Parramatta and District Historical Society, 1991)

St John’s Cemetery, the oldest existing European burial ground in Australia, was established on the southern outskirts of the Rose Hill settlement in 1790. There were ten burials in the cemetery by the end of 1790 and a further 67 in 1791.

The death of Henry Edward Dodd, 28.1.1791, approximately one year after the first burial in the cemetery, has given Parramatta two important firsts. Dodd was Superintendent of convicts employed in cultivation at Rose Hill and his was the first public funeral in the colony. His headstone is the earliest in situ in Australia. It was an indication of the esteem in which Henry Dodd was held that when the colony was facing famine, a headstone was provided. It simply inscribed, H. E. Dodd 1791.

A Government Order dated Saturday 11 May 1811 stated:

". . . It being a sacred Duty incumbent on All, to guard and protect the Remains of their deceased Friends from every unnecessary Exposure, it hence becomes necessary that the several Consecrated Burial Grounds should be speedily inclosed in a decent manner."

The inhabitants of Parramatta began an Enclosure Fund in accordance with the government order. The resulting ditch and fence cost £82-4-7, a large sum of money in 1811, and indicating that it must have been a very substantial barrier as convict labour was fairly readily available. However, by the early 1820's the bank and ditch enclosure had fallen into decay and Governor Brisbane gave instructions for the brick wall, which still stands, to be built around the site.

Unfortunately, no records survive that detail any aspect of the construction of the wall; tile brickmaker, builder, and cost are all unknown. The bricks are, however, the typical apricot colour and similar in texture to other bricks known to have been made in Parramatta. Many of the bricks in the wall have impressed arrowhead marks. John Clew's bricks, distinguished by his elongated heart frog mark and by their speckled markings due to impurities in the clay, were subsequently used to repair the walls. He had a particular affinity for the cemetery and its wall and when dying, requested he be buried "as close to his beloved brick wall as possible", His grave is alongside the northern boundary.

From the earliest years to late Victorian times the cemetery has seen a huge variety of funerals from the poorest to the most showy and elaborate. Both local and Sydney papers prove a valuable source of information for funeral services and customs of the times. The funeral of D'Arcy Wentworth Esquire took from one o'clock until four o'clock to wend its way from Homebush to the graveside. The Reverend Samuel Marsden was buried "in his own churchyard at Parramatta and upwards of sixty carriages formed the mourning procession.”

In the 1930's the cemetery records were destroyed by fire. Many early Australian church records no longer exist due to flood, fire, vermin or human neglect such as illustrated by the well known entry in a clergyman's wife's diary:

"The following day being wet, I put the girls to the task of cutting up the old church records as I have found the paper more suitable for the use of curling paper for the girls hair. "

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Given names Surname GIVN SURN Sosa SOSA Birth SORT_BIRT Place NCHI Death SORT_DEAT Age AGE Place Last change CHAN SEX BIRT DEAT TREE
Mary AMANET
Mary GILBERT
MaryAAAAAMANETAMANETAAAAMary0June 10, 17882374275230England, United Kingdom66February 21, 182723884091923814134Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYESR
William Joseph BARNES
William JosephAAAABARNESBARNESAAAAWilliam Joseph0about 18612400959158Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia00January 21, 18832408832136228055Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
Ann BEAN
Ann JAMES
AnnAAAABEANBEANAAAAAnn0November 12, 17892374795229London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom1313March 11, 185423982891656423494Baulkham Hills, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Elizabeth BEAN
Elizabeth SHELLEY
ElizabethAAAABEANBEANAAAAElizabeth0December 31, 17822372287236Piccadilly, Greater London, England, United Kingdom00September 20, 187824072481409534961Sydney, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
James Thomas John BEAN
James Thomas JohnAAAABEANBEANAAAAJames Thomas John0before April 15, 17532361435266North Hayling, Hampshire, England, United Kingdom88April 19, 183923928491808631414Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYESR
Esther BECKET
Esther HENDLE
Esther JAMES
Esther TUCKWELL
EstherAAAABECKETBECKETAAAAEsther0estimated 1796237721855August 24, 18402393342178-1Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Ann DAVIS
Ann RICHARDS
Ann FOWLES
Ann WILLIAMS
Ann MOULDS
AnnAAAADAVISDAVISAAAAAnn0about 17732368818246St. George, Gloucestershire, England, United Kingdom88March 11, 185423982891658129653Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYESR
Florence Emily FULLAGAR
Florence EmilyAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAAFlorence Emily0March 26, 1862240122615700July 1, 186324016881551462Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Francis Latham FULLAGAR
Francis LathamAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAAFrancis Latham0October 16, 18572399604161Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia00January 9, 18812408090138238486Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
George Thomas FULLAGAR
George ThomasAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAAGeorge Thomas0August 31, 18552398827163Marsfield, , New South Wales, Australia00February 3, 18792407384140238557Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
John FULLAGAR
JohnAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAAJohn0calculated September 1848239628617000December 9, 18662402945152186673Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
John FULLAGAR
John FULLAGHER
JohnAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAAJohn0August 7, 17852373237233Maidstone, Kent, England, United Kingdom77August 7, 187524061081439032871Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
Mary Esther FULLAGAR
Mary EstherAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAAMary Esther0May 20, 18422393976176New South Wales, Australia00between September 11, 1863 and September 13, 18632401761155217784Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Roy H George FULLAGAR
Roy H GeorgeAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAARoy H George0calculated April 18862410012133New South Wales, Australia00November 14, 188624102251320227Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
William John FULLAGAR
William JohnAAAAFULLAGARFULLAGARAAAAWilliam John0March 28, 18162384427203Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia1717August 8, 189424130491247828622Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
Charlotte GILBERT
Charlotte BRIEN
CharlotteAAAAGILBERTGILBERTAAAACharlotte0May 6, 18142383735204Shoreditch, Somerset, England, United Kingdom1111April 30, 186224012611564717526Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Hannah GILBERT
Hannah FULLAGAR
HannahAAAAGILBERTGILBERTAAAAHannah0September 19, 18192385697199Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia66May 3, 185223976121663211915Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
John GILBERT
JohnAAAAGILBERTGILBERTAAAAJohn0November 3, 18072381359211London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom00July 26, 186624028091525821450Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
Maria GILBERT
Maria WILLIAMS
MariaAAAAGILBERTGILBERTAAAAMaria0November 15, 18152384293203Shoreditch, Somerset, England, United Kingdom00January 25, 188324088361366724543North Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Samuel GILBERT
SamuelAAAAGILBERTGILBERTAAAASamuel0about 17882374296231England, United Kingdom66June 20, 187524060601438731946North Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYESR
Sarah GILBERT
Sarah TINDALE
SarahAAAAGILBERTGILBERTAAAASarah0January 4, 18182385074201Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia00November 13, 189124120501277326976Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Augustas Richard HOLLEBONE
Augustas RichardAAAAHOLLEBONEHOLLEBONEAAAAAugustas Richard0August 16, 18072381280211Eastbourne, Sussex, England, United Kingdom77September 26, 187624065241426925244Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
Mary JAMES
MaryAAAAJAMESJAMESAAAAMary0September 3, 18292389334189New South Wales, Australia00August 17, 18412393700177114366Castle Hill, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Samuel JAMES
SamuelAAAAJAMESJAMESAAAASamuel0about March 17842372728235Theydon Garnon, Essex, England, United Kingdom1313March 6, 185523986491647125936New South Wales, Australia0MYESYES 
Esther LATHAM
Esther LEADHAM
Esther FULLAGAR
EstherAAAALATHAMLATHAMAAAAEsther0about 17842372835235Lancashire, England, United Kingdom77September 27, 186124010461577728393Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Bridget LYNCH
Bridget GILBERT
BridgetAAAALYNCHLYNCHAAAABridget0calculated 18172384888202England, United Kingdom00April 19, 188624100161336925310Paddington, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Elizabeth MOULDS
ElizabethAAAAMOULDSMOULDSAAAAElizabeth0November 15, 18362391964182Dural, , New South Wales, Australia00March 18, 183723920871820123Dural, , New South Wales, Australia0FYESYES 
Simon MOULDS
Simon MOULD
SimonAAAAMOULDSMOULDSAAAASimon0about 17762369913243Enfield, Middlesex, England, United Kingdom44June 17, 184323943691756724638Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYESR
William SHELLEY
WilliamAAAASHELLEYSHELLEYAAAAWilliam0May 29, 17742369149244Hanley, Staffordshire, England, United Kingdom00July 6, 181523841612034115012Parramatta, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYESR
Edwin WILLIAMS
EdwinAAAAWILLIAMSWILLIAMSAAAAEdwin0September 10, 18102382401208England, United Kingdom00June 30, 189524133751238430974Petersham, , New South Wales, Australia0MYESYESR