Archiver > CUMBERLAND > 2002-05 > 1020848545

From: "Ivan Gregory" <>
Subject: [CUL] Cumberland emigrants - ASKEW
Date: Wed, 8 May 2002 19:02:25 +1000

The first of my ancestors to arrive in Australia was Samuel ASKEW who came
on the ship Charles Eaton which berthed at Hobart, Tasmania, then called Van
Dieman's Land, in June 1834.
Samuel's grandfather was ROBERT ASKEW, whose connection to Cumberland
relates to his marriage to MARY OWEN, [born in Newcastle, father Thomas
Owen], in 1769 at the Thwaites Chapel. Both Mary and Robert gave their
address as Whahouse, subsequently renamed Duddon Hall, near Bootle.
Robert became writing Master at the Royal Grammar School in Newcastle.
According to a page I have recently received from a history of the school,
there was an inquiry into the school in 1822. One of the recommendations was
that Robert be replaced, at that time he was 77 years of age and infirm. No
compulsory retirement age then! Robert died in 1827 and was buried at All
Saints Church Newcastle.
Robert and Mary had four children, Robert, Anne, Mary and Elizabeth. The
younger Robert lived in London and gave his occupation as ship owner, Coal
Merchant and a member of the London Coal Exchange. According to his will, he
seems to have lost most of his money in a shipwreck.
Samuel, born London 1811, one of the younger Robert's sons, married
Charlotte LENCH in 1830 and a daughter, also called Charlotte, was born in
1832. Samuel appears to have fled London in 1834 and boarded the ship to
Australia from Falmouth leaving wife and daughter behind. He also used a
false name of SUTTON, his mother's maiden name.
Samuel entered into a life long relationship with Sarah FIELDER, in
Australia and they had 14 children all with the surname Sutton although some
were given Askew as a second name.
Sarah arrived on the ship Strathfieldsaye in 1834 as a bounty girl. There
was an immigration scheme to recruit poor, but otherwise respectable,
young women as there was an acute shortage of females in the colonies. When
the ship arrived there was a riot as the men sought a wife! Sarah was
employed at the King's orphanage as a nursery maid until she met Samuel.
They had their first child in 1836 and then travelled by bullock cart to
Launceston where they remained for the rest of their lives.
It remains a mystery as to why Samuel deserted his family. Migrating to
Australia seems a drastic way to evade a marriage even if divorce was
difficult and expensive in those days! The other mystery is the birth of the
first Robert in about 1743. Despite years of research no information has
been found. Family stories are that Sir Hugh Askew of Standing Stones,
Millom, is an early ancestor but as Robert's birth cannot be found this
remains highly speculative.

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