Friday, August 8, 2014

Children of George Worgan

It is written of George WORGAN that he married Mary LAWRY in Liskeard after he and returned to England, and then had two sons who moved to Australia. Given that I'm interested in the fate of Worgan's journals/manuscript I wanted to look into his children/

According to Hunter's published journal , the crew of the wrecked Sirius arrived in Portsmouth (England) on the 22nd April 1792. Worgan married Mary Lawry of Liskeard in 1793, the transcript being available through Cornwall OPC.

23 May 1793 Parish Liskeard Groom George Bouchier WORGANGroom Residence St Andrews, Holborn, London Groom Condition Bachelor Groom Rank Profession Surgeon in the Royal Navy Groom SignedBride Mary LAWRY
Bride Residence of the parish & town Bride Condition spinsterBride SignedMarried by Licence Witness William LAWRY Witness Mary WATSON

The Cornwall OPC also reveals several children born to George and Mary. These will be dealt with separately below. The first baptism identified is in 1798, though it is not clear whether the five year gap is due to WORGAN being away on service, or because children born prior to that date have not yet been identified.

1. Mary WORGAN (1798-1799).
2. George William WORGAN (1800-1862).
3. Mary WORGAN (1801-?).
4. John WORGAN (1803-?).
5. John Parsons WORGAN (1805-?).
6. poss. Charlotte Eliazbeth WORGAN (1855-1864).

George Bouchier Worgan, aged 80, was buried on 8 Mar 1838 at Liskeard. His residence was entered as 'Borough'. His death was also entered in the parish register for West Briton (which appears to be in Truro 35 miles away) on 9 Mar 1838. Details entered are George Worgan, age 81, residence Liskeard, "On Sun last; formerly a surgeon in the Navy".

His wife, Mary, was probably baptized 7 Oct 1765 at Liskeard, daughter of William and Elizabeth LAWRY. In the 1841 census, she was living at Wadeland (?) Cottage, Liskeard, listed aged 65, of independennt means, born in Cornwall. Also in the home were Charlotte, 25, born in county, and Charles, 6, born in county.

She was buried at Liskeard on 17 Dec 1846, age 82, residence "Borough". Her death was also noted in the 'West Broton and Cornwall Advertiser' on 18 Dec 1846 "and on Tuesday, Mrs. WORGAN, widow of the late Mr. WORGAN, surgeon, R.N., aged 82 years".

Their Children

1. Mary WORGAN (1798-1799)
Mary was baptized on 6 May 1798 at Morval, Cornwall (parish adjacent to Liskeard), father given as George Bouchier Worgan, mother given as Mary. Mary Worgan was buried at Liskeard on 19 Sep 1799.

2. George William WORGAN (1800-1862).
George William was baptized on 9 Jan 1800 at Morval, Cornwall (parish adjacent to Liskeard), father given as George Boucher Worgan, mother given as Mary. He appears in the Royal Cornwall Gazette in 1837 in trouble with the local law, and the next year the Sydney Morning Herald (6 Aug) notes that a W. Worgan, music master, arrived on the Forentia from Plymouth, having departed in April - the month after his father died. From that time there were regular advertisements relating to music teaching, such as the example from October 1838.

Royal Cornwall Gazette - Friday 31 March 1837
On Thursday last Messrs Geo. Worgan, jun., Nicholas Clemence, and Joseph Elford were brought before the Liskeard Borough Magistrates charged with committing depredations by breaking various gates &c. on the night of the preceding Saturday. After an investigation of the case, which lasted several hours, the parties were fined 5 pounds each, besides the costs and repairs.

The Sydney Herald Monday 1 October 1838
Member of the Royal Society of Musicians, London, Singing master, and Teacher of the Pianoforte, BEGS respectfully to acquaint the Ladies, the Gentlemen, and Inhabitants of Sydney and its Neighbourhood, that he has just arrived from London, and intends giving instruction in the above branches of his Profession. For terms, &c , apply at Mr. Francis', Prince street, opposite the Military Hospital. Schools attended. The Pianoforte tuned by Mr. G. W, W. on an improved principle.

In 1843, William had bankruptcy hearings. There are numerous references to piano-playing performances by Mr. Worgan at this time, and in 1849 he advertised as the organist for St Patrick's Church, located in the Rocks district and still standing.

In 1847 he married Mary Tuohy (NSW BDM V184764 32C/1847) at St James' Church in Sydney. In 1849 a daughter Mary C Worgan was baptized (NSW V1849217 141/1849). SMH for 3 Jan 1850 has an announcement: "BIRTH. At Woolloomooloo, on Sunday, December 30, Mrs. George William Worgan, of a daughter." In 1845 several concert performances were advertised at which Worgan was listed playing, and included in these lists is a "Miss. Tuohy" - this may be the same person he later married.

The relationship may have become estranged, as in 1851 the Sydney Morning Herald (13 Feb 1851) reports that George William had been summonsed for not paying a weekly sum to his 'deserted wife', the original order being given on 26th August 1850. A ruling was not made as the parties had been living together again. The Electoral Roll for 1851 showed George William Worgan living in a dwelling house in Crown Street, Sydney.

{Empire, 21 March 1851, A 'Mary Worgan' was listed on the departure list for the 'Alert', for San Francisco. May or may not be connected}

No advertisements are found for George William between 1852-1860.

The last advertisement found related to music was placed in the Sydney Morning Herald on 2 Nov 1861, stating that "MR. WORGAN, professed Tuner of the Pianoforte, having returned to Sydney, respectfully requests all orders for him to be left with Mr. WILLIAM KING, Pianoforte Warehouse, Market-street." 

In 1862, the death of a George Worgan was registered in Sydney, aged 65. The death of a Mary Worgan has not been found.

3. Mary WORGAN (1801-?).
Mary was baptized on 17 Sep 1801 at Morval, Cornwall (parish adjacent to Liskeard), father given as George Boucher Worgan, mother given as Mary. Fate not yet determined.

4. John WORGAN (1803-?).
John was baptized on 23 Nov 1803 at Morval, Cornwall (parish adjacent to Liskeard), father given as George Boucher Worgan, mother given as Mary. Burial not yet identified.

5. John Parsons WORGAN (1805-?).
John Parsons was baptized on 12 Mar 1805 at Liskeard, father given as George Boucher Worgan, mother given as Mary. The middle name 'Parsons' appears to have come from his aunt, Charlotte PARSONS nee WORGAN, who married Sir William PARSONS, at St Marylebone, London on 21 Sep 1778.

John appears in the local newspaper in 1827 being granted with a hunting license:
Royal Cornwall Gazette - Saturday 22 September 1827
Cornwall Game Lists
Persons who have gained game certificates for 1827
Worgan, John P, Liskeard

While I have not cited it, multiple sources state that John's father George wrote to authorities in NSW asking that his son be given a position. In 1830 the brig 'Elizabeth' has a 'Wm Worgan' stated as arriving on the ship. This was possible an error, as from that year till 1836, John P Worgan is entered in the Returns of the Colony as Clerk to the Bench of Magistrates at Hyde Park Barracks, appointed 13 Sep 1830 by the Governor. As per a previous post, during this period Worgan was on contact withJohn Lhotsky, to whom he communicates the existence of his father's journal.

It is not clear whether John left his position, or the colony in 1836, but there is no further evidence of him till 1843, when he is entered in the Gaol Description and Entrance Books.

The Darlinghurst Gaol books states that John Worgan, arrived on the ship 'Elizabeth' in 1830, Free on arrival, was born in Cornwall, was Protestant and has the occupation of Clerk, admitted to gaol on Nov 9 1843 by the Police for Trial, and discharged on 12 Dec 1843. The Description Book for the same period adds that John was born in 1807,  was 5 feet 5 1/2 inches tall, with a fresh complexion, dark hair and hazel eyes. According to the Sydney Morning Herald (10 Nov 1843), he was charged with stealing a £ note.

Again in 1849, John Worgan is entered at Darlinghurst gaol. The information entered is similar to that above, including the occupation of Clerk, with the addition that he is stout. He was admitted 26 Feb 1849, for one week, and discharged 14 Mar 1849.

No subsequent information on John has been identified.

6. poss. Charlotte Eliazbeth WORGAN (1815-1864).

On 20 Nov 1833, a Charles Parsons WORGEN was baptised at Liskeard, mother Charlotte WORGAN, no father listed. The Parsons name confirms that there is a connection to the George WORGAN and family.

In the 1841 census, Mary Worgan (George's widow) was living at Wadeland (?) Cottage, Liskeard, with Charlotte, 25, born in county, and Charles, 6, born in county. If Charlotte was George and Mary's daughter, then Mary would have been over 40 when she was born. I have not been able to find a baptism for a Charlotte WORGAN.

Charlotte married in 1842: On the 25th ult., at Liskeard, MR. WILLIAM MURRAY, jun., to MISS CHARLOTTE ELIZABETH WORGAN.
The civil registration was made at Liskeard, Dec 1842, Vol 9, Page 219

On 13 Jul 1848 Charles Parsons WORGAN, son of Charlotte, aged 15, was buried at Liskeard.

In 1851, Charlotte MURRAY, married wife aged 47 (therefore born about 1804), was living on Castle St in Liskeard, but stated her birthplace as Cardinham, a village of some 10 miles from Liskeard. Charlotte's husband, William Murray Jr was head, aged 36 , an 'auctioneer; high bailiff county court', born at Liskeard. Also at the home is a brother of William (George), and a servant. No children are present at the home.

In 1861, Charlotte is not at home with her family. At Castle-villia, Castle street, Liskeard, Charlotte's husband, William Murray was head, aged 45 , an 'auctioneer; &c', born at Liskeard. Also at the home (in order) is Jane Whitford, 29, unmarried housekeeper born in Kenwyn, along with three children: Lewis W. Murrayton Murray age 4, Edith Jane Murray age 3 and Emma Mary age 1. These were not Charlotte's, but in fact William's children with Jane Whitford, with whom he was carrying on an affair and co-habiting.
The children are registered as follows:

Jun 1856 WHITFORD Lewis William Murrayton Murray Liskeard 5c 86
Edith Jane Whitford at Liskeard Q1 1858 vol 5c p90
Emma Mary Whitford Liskeard Q2 1860 vol 5c p79

Where was Charlotte? In 1861, Charlotte herself was living alone in Plymouth at 8 Compton St, married, 55, born at Glynn, Cornwall. This may seem to contradict her previously stated birthplace of Cardinham, but in fact Glynn House is in Cardinham.

It appears Charlotte died in 1864 (civil registration Charlotte Elizabeth, reg Liskeard, Sep 1864) aged about 58, and William Murray almost immediately married Jane Whitford and had more children by his second wife.

The Royal Cornwall Gazette, Falmouth Packet, and General Advertiser Friday, October 28, 1864.
MURRAY-WHITFORD – At the parish church of St. Martin’s-by-looe, October 20, by the Rev. Mr. Farwell, William Murray, Esq., jun., of Murrayton-lodge, Liskeard, to Jane, daughter of the late Captain Whitford.

This blog entry touches on Murray's life and helped me

I think Charlotte's family is of great interest. She lived with her mother after George's death, so it is possible that she inherited the diaries. In which case they would be in the MURRAY family. I should note that I have not yet found a baptism for Charlotte, it is possible Charlotte was brought into the family rather than born into it, but she lived with her parents, so was certainly a part of the family.


So if the diary went to a child it was:
with John P when he came to NSW in 1830
with George W when he sailed for NSW just after his father died in 1838
with Charlotte after her mother's death in 1846.

I would be very interested in hearing from anyone with more information.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Could the Worgan diary have survived?

In this post I reflect on the various written records George Worgan may have produced.

George Worgan's letter with appended copies of journal entries was written to his brother Richard, and is owned by the State Library of NSW. As discussed in previous posts, the indication is that Worgan copied these entries from a journal he was keeping. Therefore, aside from this letter, a journal (or journals) maintained by Worgan may have returned with him to England and more specifically Liskeard in Cornwall.

What other evidence exists for Worgan's journal? On the 11th of July, Worgan wrote to his brother:

I am keeping by me an Account of the Voyage &c. &c. in a Series of Letters which You shall have the Reading of when I return Home, They are something fuller & more accurate than this.

Certainly more than one letter was written by Worgan. In his letter to Richard he mentions letters. On March 25th, 1788 he states "I shall put Letters on Board the Three Ships, for You, Denton, and all my Friends...". On May 12th he states "The Charlotte and Scarborough Transports, sailed, to Day for China, and as it is a matter of Doubt, whether those Ships will not arrive in England, before any of the Transports, Can, that sail direct for England, as soon as they can be cleared of their Stores. I have put 2 or 3 Letters on Board them for You & all my Friends, indeed, it is natural for Us, in such a distant part of the World, to snatch greedily at every Opportunity to convey our Hopes & Wishes to our Friends." Shortly afterwards on May 19th he writes "They have begun to unlade the Transports, and land the Stores, and it has this Day been publickly announced that some of the Transports will sail for England in 6 Weeks, so a scribbling we will go. I shall put a Letter on Board each Ship for You. Pray don't neglect to forward those that I intend to Inclose in yours". On the 2nd July again "It has this Evening been announced that two of the Transports will sail for England on the 10th. Instant, & two more on the 12th.- I shall put Letters on Board of  each, for You, & many of my Friends, so that you will receive One among them all.... I have written a very long letter, similar to this to my Friend Mr
 Mein of Fowey, & I am thinking to put His & Yours on Board different Ships, so that if his, or Yours 
should Miscarry, You or Him can communicate some Accounts of your Infant Colony. "

Worgan signs off his letter "The Ships sail to Morrow Morning therefore, as I find I have no less than 31 Letters (& 5 of them almost as long as y') to Close, Seal, Enclose & direct, I must Conclude.

The published transcript of Worgan's letter (1978) has an unattributed introduction, which stated that "There are references to a longer manuscript by him, one, by John Lhotsky being to a manuscript in two volumes 'communicated to me by a son of the author, Mr John P Worgan'. The whereabouts of these manuscripts is not known at present."

The citation is to John Lhotsky's book, A journey from Sydney to the Australian Alps, 1835, pp12-13.

While I do not have access to Lhotsky's book here in the US, Google Books has a segment accessible, but I need the entire book. It states that Worgan's son now living in Australia informed Lhotsky of its existence:
'...Colonisation of New South Wales - also, of that part of the Country colonised, its inhabitants &c. &c., in a series of letters to a friend, by G.B. Worgan, Esq., surgeon in His Majesty's Ship SIRIUS." This manuscript communicated to me by the son of the author, (Mr. John P. Worgan) will, when published, afford much information, and complete the - as it were, primordial narratives of Captain Phillips, Hunter, Collins, &c.

Two important points should be made.
1. While John Parsons Worgan lived in Australia, Lhotsky does not explicitly state the manuscript is also in Australia. His father George was still alive and living in England, and it is possible that John was communicating that the manuscript existed, not necessarily that it was in his possession. The entire book section may reveal more.
2. It is made clear that the manuscript is comprised of 'letters to a friend' - not a journal.

There is a second reference to Worgan's diaries. In 1856, John Allen published his 'History of the Borough of Liskeard and its Vicinity'. There are several references to George Worgan, one of which is a short biography included in Chapter XVII ('Notices of Principal Individuals and Families'). While no sources are stated, the book was published 18 years after George Worgan's death, suggesting that the details were provided by those who knew him. In the biography it states in part (p525-526):

'In 1778 (sic), while young, he went out at surgeon in the first expedition with convicts under Commodore Phillips, to Botany Bay, then but little known. He wrote an interesting account of the voyage and colony : it was however never published, and has been mislaid. 

This statement, written in Liskeard in 1856, states the manuscript has been mislaid, and therefore that it has been search for. This is in contrast to the certainty of the information provided by John Parsons Worgan twenty years earlier in Sydney, that the manuscript was intended to be published.

Why would the manuscript not be composed of Worgan's original journal?

George Worgan was a member of the ship Sirius. On 19 March 1790, the Sirius was wrecked on a reef at Norfolk Island while landing stores. The crew was stranded on Norfolk Island until 21 February 1791, when they were taken back to England. The sailor Jacob Nagle was also on the Sirius that day, and his handwritten account has survived (two copies have survived) and been published by John Dann.

Nagle clearly describes the wreck, and the following points regarding the possessions of those on board is of relevance:
- "Having a pleasant breeze, we arrived at Norfolk Island about the 18 of March 1790 [sic. March 13]. Lay too and out boats and sent the Leut[enant] Govener and his troop, all the men and womin convicts on shore, the baggage remaining on board".
- "We began to secure our clothing in our chests and lash them well with cords and hove them overboard, thinking the surf would take them on shore, but being a strong currant setting to the westward, they either drove to see or into the whirlpool, so we lost all, only what we stood in".
Nagle then describes the effort to rescue provisions, mainly barrels, over the course of two weeks while the ship sat on the coral, but makes no mention of any luggage being recovered.

If Worgan's diary was lost (Nagle's was probably lost at the same time), the letters referred to by Worgan, some very long, may have been gathered together by Richard, or George on his return. These could be used to reconstitute his journal using the copies he forwarded to friends back home.

This would account for John P Worgan's description to Lhotsky of the manuscript that existed.

Whether the letter to Richard Worgan was part of that collection known to exist in 1835 is of course another point of conjecture. Perhaps the manuscript was broken up into its original letters, or perhaps this letter (addressed to Richard the brother, not a friend) is separate to this collation. Understanding George's family will help me understand possible fates of the manuscript.