Meg ‘Elizabeth’ Prest/Youl

Meg, enigma of our family history – a strong, determined, resourceful Irish lass, who came to Tasmania as a ‘free’ settler.  A random or a planned event? Meg raised three amazing sons despite the adversities of living in the 19th Century. Meg, not Mary or Elizabeth is the name most commonly used by Jimmy Holt’s descendants, one we are all familiar with. Elizabeth and sometimes Mary, used officially.

1830 – born in County Clare – referenced from other family members research.

3 February 1853  Mary Elizabeth Dwyer – arrived in Launceston a 23-year-old on the ‘Northumberland‘ from Liverpool as a ‘free’.

13 June 1853  application to marry convict Samuel Robinson. Samuel arrived 1852 aboard the Lady Montague. November 25th the application progresses with final approval granted 30/11/1853.

26 December 1853 (Boxing Day) Mary Dwyer and Samuel Robinson are married in the Parish Church, Georgetown. Samuel’s occupation – Constable.

Son’s William 1854 and John 1856, registration of births (with names) in Launceston although the boys were born in Georgetown. Another male child was born to Samuel & Mary Robinson in Sept 1858 however this child was not named by his mother at the time of registering his birth & is not James. I have seen a Christening document that suggests this child was named David but he disappears from our history for some unexplained reason. James Robinson was born in Hobart in 1851.

1859  January – William 4 and John 2 – admitted to the Queen’s school orphanage, application made by Father Hall –  Samuel Robinson deserted his family, Mary has not the means to support her young sons. There is no mention of a younger brother.

IMG_0039IMG_0040IMG_0041Samuel Robinson  located aboard the Whaling Barque the ‘Sussex’.

6 February 1860  William and John collected by their Mother.

1 May 1862  Elizabeth marries John Holt in Launceston. The certificate states her surname was either Thomas or Brown at that point in time and remains an anomaly. James (Jimmy) was 11 William (Billy) 8 and John (Johnny) 6.

Coincidentally John Holt registration documents; one whaling expedition….Barque ‘Runnymede’ 5/1/1857, employed as a seaman. John Holt’s signature for payment food and wages. REF: MB2/33/1/355 reel, Z267.

Oral history passed down to Dad from Horace, life improved when Meg married John Holt, ‘he was a good man’,  kind to the boys, they considered him their father and vice versa.

1871 –  The Holt’s own a broker’s shop in Brisbane Street.

1875 – James is issued with Master of Home Trade Ticket after passing the examination.

1875 Court Case –  site of the Holt’s shop. Click here the long panoramic view of Wellington and Brisbane St intersection in 1885, possibly similar in 1875.

1876 – Meg quick to action here, withdrew the charge a few days later.

August 1877 – Interesting reading about J Moorcroft!!

September 1877  William and Ellen marry at Bridport.

February 1878 John and Maryanne marry in Launceston – Meg is witness along with another Holt, unable to work out first name.

July 1878  – John Holt dies – aged 52 last name on page as death registered in October after the Coroners inquest – occupation shoemaker!   James is 27, William 24 and John 22.

1878 – William Edward born to William and Ellen both names incorrect on certificate………. Elizabeth May to John and Maryanne.

March 1879  Meg 48 married Thomas Prest/Youl 68. James was 28, William 26 and John 24.

1879 – Jessie Elizabeth born to William and Ellen, baptised on Little Dog Island……… Alfred John born to John and Mary

1880 James Thomas born to William and Ellen

1881 Phillip Daniel “Bub’ born to William and Ellen, baptised at Badger Corner…… Albert James born to John and Maryanne birth registered from Little Dog Island

February 1881  James and Emily marry, Meg is witness to the marriage at St Johns  in Launceston by Cannon Brownrigg. James is 29 and Emily 20.

1882 in court about the theft of her husband’s gold and cash from their home. This also provides evidence of being known as ‘Youl’. The Prest/Youl trove list.

1882 Edith Elizabeth is born prematurely to James and Emily – registered as Emily Louisa.

1883 Louis Herbert born to William and Ellen……. Henry Ernest born (or Frederick Louis Baptism) to John and Mary

1884 Arthur Lee 20th August born to John and Mary ………three days later on August 23rd Twins Henry (King) and James (Tuck) born to James and Emily – Tuck’s birth registration not on same page, having the three on one page would have looked awesome – John registered the birth by letter from (Little) Dog Island and James from North Sisters Island.

1885 Mary born to John and Mary.

March 1886 Thomas Prest dies.

1886 probate granted to Meg. Launceston court case re Meg to pay costs to V Green outstanding debt from Thomas.

1886 Clara Jane born to William and Ellen……… Walter George born to James and Emily.

1887 Elizabeth hosts two weddings at her home Wellington Street, she is witness to one.

1888 May born to John and Maryanne. …….Herbert born to James and Emily

7 December 1888  Meg presses charges against Sarah A Turner

1888 Assessment and Valuation Rolls – Town of Launceston – occupier of property 37 YORK St is ELIZABETH PREST – OWNER of the property is one CATHERINE PREST who also owns 38A & B, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52 York Street and 37 Bathurst St.

1889 Albert James born to William and Ellen………Louisa born to James and Emily.

 10 October 1890 Meg passes away – Meg has 19 grand children at the time death – her three sons eventually have 35 children between them. William 13, John 15 and James 11. LINK TO WILL

26 October 1890  Charles Ernest is born to William and Ellen – 10 days after the death of his Mother.

10 December 1890 Ernest John is born to James and Emily.

3 February 1891  mention of probate, Elizabeth to sons James, William and John.

1898 Assessment and Valuation Rolls – Town of Launceston – OWNERS of Property are as follows: HOLT BROTHERS (inherited from Meg) 156,158,159,160,162,164,166,168,170,172,174,176,178,180,182, 184. Also 110 Bathurst St.  Only 4 of the properties registered as occupied.

June 1930  – Meg’s will …..

August 1930  Meg’s will ……

1934 Meg’s will ………continues

Catherine Prest – who is she? is she connected to Thomas Prest/Youl? Catherine the character!!

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