THE ANCESTRY AND DESCENDANTS OF ELIZABETH 'BESSIE' JOHNSTONE
Notes for Elizabeth Brennan BAKER

General Note
Elizabeth Baker/Brennan's parents were both convicts. Her father was originally known as Samuel Odkenbaker [sounds Dutch or Flemish] or later just as Samuel Baker. His death sentence was commuted to life and transportation for stealing. Her mother was Mary (Ann?) Brennan, an Irish girl sentenced in Dublin to transportation for seven years. Elizabeth was 13 years of age and pregnant when she married John Brown. She died 27th September, 1854. No trace of her has been located on the death register for the area, even after looking throughout the period at the microfilm available. Perhaps some pages were not filmed, or lost in fire or otherwise.

However, she appears as a statistic in a review in 1822/3 of Port Dalrymple regarding the education needs of the town's children, age 4 to 19. Along with her older sister, they are listed against Samuel Baker as girls, 6 and 5, both as 'reader' and 'writer', presumably meaning they were in need of tuition in this as she was unable to sign her name at her wedding. This reference to this note on educational needs can be found in the card index at Hobart Archives with the reel number, filed under the name of their father, Samuel. Regrettably the writer has lost her own notes on this.

Elizabeth died tragically young after producing a large and healthy family. Questions have been asked about the paternity of one or two of them. Anyone with information on this, please get in touch.

Marriage Note
The marriage entry in the parish records for St John Launceston, dated 18th July 1831, no. 192 gives their names as John Brown Free and Elizabeth Baker Free, married by Banns. It was signed by John, but Elizabeth Baker 'her mark'.

The copy in family hands is extremely blurred. A better one could be obtained from the fiche record.

Any highly necessary addtions or corrections may be passed on by this e-mail address: gwynethcheesemanATyahoo.co.uk, replacing AT with the usual symbol.

Web page built by Cumberland Family Tree, 1 Aug 2016