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Pierse Family of Listowel, Ballyduff & Rattoo

Replies: 15

Re: Pierse Family of Listowel, Ballyduff & Rattoo

Posted: 3 Feb 2010 10:40PM GMT
Classification: Query
Dear Bob,
Thanks for your message. I have not done any research on the Pierse family for a long long time. My husband's g.g. grandmother was Winifred Pierse, who was born in Ballyduff-Rattoo-Listowel in County Kerry circa 1830. She immigrated to Australia on the ship "Thomas Arbuthnot", arriving in Sydney on 3 February, 1850 (see the book "A Decent Set of Girls" by Cheryl Mongan and Richard Reid). The girls on this ship were said to be Irish Orphan girls, but a lot of them had at least one parent still living in Ireland. The surgeon of the ship, Charles Strutt, took the girls in horse drawn drays to south west NSW - Jugiong, Gundagai, Yass, Tumut - and farmed them out, to work for respectable settlers. Winifred married William Hines Carrigg at Gundagai in 1851. Winifred was aged 19 years, and William was aged 50 years. They had eight children. Winifred's brother, John Pierse, also immigrated from Ireland. I do not know what ship - DO YOU KNOW THE NAME OF THE SHIP AND DATE OF ARRIVAL? He was a widower at the time of arrival. He joined the NSW Police Force with the registered number 348. He was made a constable on 15 August, 1858. He resigned from the police on 31 March, 1863, when he was stationed in the Murray district. He married Mary Quirk on 25 May, 1863 at Tumut and they settled at Darbalara. But you probably would know this.

Winifred and John had a brother, Dr William Joseph Pierse. Years and years ago (possibly 20 years ago?) I was contacted by a lady in Victoria who was a descendent of Dr Pierse. This lady strongly suspected that Dr Pierse would be a brother, or at least a close relative of John and Winifred, but had no proof. Then one day, I was talking to Vonnie Lindley (nee Pierse) of Gundagai and she told me, with no prompting on my part (I don't think I even mentioned Dr Pierse) that her grandfather, John Pierse, had a brother who was a doctor and he was named William!! So I think that confirmed that Dr Pierse was a brother of John and Winifred!! Vonnie's brother, Jack Pierse, also knew of the doctor.

William Joseph Pierse was an apothecary and surgeon who arrived at Melbourne on board the ill-fated ship "Isabella Watson". William was the ship's doctorand was hailed as a hero when the ship sank off Port Phillip Bay on 23 March, 1852. William married in 1852 to Eliza Newman who was a passenger on the ship. William and Eliza later lived at Bendigo. He was supposedly a doctor on the Victorian goldfields. William Joseph Pierse died at Peel River, Tamworth, NSW, in 1861.

Apparently the surname "Pierse" is very rare. Most variations of the name are spelt "Pearce" or "Pierce". these spellings are the most common form of the name. The Pierse family of North Kerry are unusual as this family originated almost exclusively from the villages of Rattoo, Ballyduff and Listowel in North Kerry, and no evidence of this name in early times (with this exact spelling)has been found anywhere else.

The Pierse family of North Kerry can be traced from Pierse, second son of Maurice Fitz Thomas, second Lord of Kerry, by his first wife Elena, daughter of William fitz Elie. Pierse fitz Maurice was born about 1260.
There is presently a firm of solicitors in Listowel named
Pierse. I have not looked for a long time, but I think if you google "Pierse" + "Listowel" you should find info.
The name Pierse in Co. Kerry in the 18th century crops up in the following
"Pierse, Richard, Ballinagaragh, Co. Kerry. gentleman - 1732"
"Pierse, Thomas, Ballinagaragh, Co. Kerry, gentleman - 1734"

Hope this has been of some help to you.
regards, Marcia.
SubjectAuthorDate Posted
Abi440 4 Feb 2010 5:40AM GMT 
bobnrose22 4 Feb 2010 7:48AM GMT 
phyllt 25 Feb 2011 3:48AM GMT 
bobnrose22 25 Feb 2011 5:47AM GMT 
phyllt 12 Feb 2011 6:02AM GMT 
phyllt 12 Feb 2011 6:02AM GMT 
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