Missing A Photograph of Christina ROME nee ANDERSON (1866-1909)
Born Christina ANDERSON died Christina ROME
Christina was the third child born to Peter ANDERSON and his wife Euphemia (nee RAMSAY) on 4 February 1866. Family researchers on ‘Ancestry’ have her birthplace as ‘Stony Creek’, Williamstown, Victoria, Australia but the ‘Stony Creek’ location had me puzzled. She was definitely born in Williamstown where her sisters and brothers were born; Euphemia (b. 1862), Powelena (b.1863), Andreas (b.1868) and Robert (b.1870). All their birth records say Williamstown, but ‘Stony Creek’ isn’t mentioned.
Further research revealed that a section of Williamstown Road was once called ‘Stony Creek’. I now believe the family probably lived in that section of road and that is why it is stated in Christina’s birth records. It was also an area where a terrible murder took place in 1848.*
Christina married a 27yo Scot from Ayrshire, Scotland, David Paterson McCrae ROME, in Williamstown on 18 April 1891. David was born in Kilmarnock, on 2 December 1864. There is a record of him being an outward passenger, with his brother Robert, on the ship Sorata in 1886. The ship was destined for Sydney at the time. I have no details of David’s occupation or why he and his brother came to Australia. Most of the passengers on the Sorata seemed to be young single men.
David and Christina’s first baby, David George ROME was born on 4 February 1892 in Footscray, a neighbouring suburb to Williamstown. Between 1892 and 1900 David took Christina back to his homeland, Scotland where they had two more children, Dollina in 1900 and John in 1905. Both children were born in Renfrewshire, around 15 miles south-west of Glasgow. John, unfortunately, died in infancy in April 1907 aged one year.
Christina was only 43yrs when she died in 1909. Sadly, there is not a photograph of her to be found.
My G Grandmother, Powelena (photo below) was Christina’s sister
Stony Creek flows from Melbourne’s Western suburbs into the Yarra River near Newport. It was an early site for basalt quarrying from around 1854 to the 1880s and the rock was used in the construction of many of Melbourne’s old buildings and for ship ballast. From the 1870s to 1880s the area was brimming with industries – noxious industries – including woollen mills, meat preserving works, glue factories, canning works, smelting and concrete works and sewerage works. Stony Creek became a toxic drain for waste products.
In earlier days, it was called Murderer’s Creek because it was the site of a grisly murder in April 1848. The body of Matthew Luck was found with his throat slashed by local Williamstown publican, Walter Butler ” … at the part of the Williamstown Road called the Stoney Creek”. The body was lying 10 yards from the road. Matthew Luck had run out of luck that fateful night. (Geelong Advertiser, Wednesday 26 April 1848, p2)