|Bartholomew McNamara' Headstone|
Sacred to the Memory of
Native of Clare Ireland
Died 27 of March 1862
Aged 66 Years
also of daughter
Died 4 May 1872
aged 84 years
and of his son
died 10 August 1853
aged 31 years
This headstone is in Riverside Cemetery, Queanbeyan in the Catholic Section. It presents some inconsistencies which are difficult to explain. The first of these is that if the stone is read literally, Bartholomew was born c. 1796 and his daughter Bridget was born c. 1788, i.e. before him. Maybe the term daughter should not be read as his daughter but just as daughter, a generic term sometimes used to designate a female but it is not clear.|
A search of the NSW BDMs for the death of Bartholomew McNamara only produces one death which was registered in 1886. In an unmarked grave in the same cemetery 18 year old Bartholomew McNamara is interred with a death date of 25 July 1886, so the death found in the BDMs appears to be his. So where is our Bartholomew's death recorded? On the website www.interment.net there is a listing of all the graves in this cemetery (which it is believed is compiled from the official cemetery records not just the headstones) and it shows the following three individuals :
1. McNamara, Bartholomew, b. Clare Ireland, d. 2 Apr 1856, age : 65yr, RC Sec, Headstone
2. McNamara, Bridget Lenane, d. 2 May 1873 Burra, age : 84yr, RC Sec, Headstone
3. McNamara, Patrick, b. Ireland, d. 10 Aug 1853, age : 33 yr, RC Sec, Headstone
Compare these records to what is on the headstone.
1. McNamara, Bartholomew, d. 27 Mar 1862, age 66 years
2. McNamara, Bridget, d. 4 May 1872, age 84 years
3. McNamara, Patrick, d. 10 Aug 1853, age 31 years
The two Patricks, sharing the same death dates would appear to be the same person (although a search of the BDMs failed to find a death indexed and the actual age is different).
One is tempted to think that the two Bridgets are the same individual with their death dates being so close (2 days difference) but there is also a year difference between them (1872 against 1873). The use of the family name Lenane is interesting and may provide some clue. The Bridget McNamara in our tree had a maiden name of Lenehan. Could Lenane be a variant of it?
Finally, there is Bartholomew. There is a difference of only 6 days between the month dates but 6 years between the year dates seems to be too much of a difference.
Does anybody have some clues for resolving this, given there appears to be no index listing for Bartholomew's death. I can't help but feel that some of the information on the headstone is incorrect. One explanation could be that it was erected some years later than the deaths and engraving instructions given from memory were incorrect. At the time I collected this headstone's details I didn't notice any construction information. I'll have a closer look next visit.
Update : January 2012 : The headstone wasn't found. It seems to have gone.
Updated : 26 Jan 2012