Bridget BERGIN was born circa 1835 in Coolgreany, Gowran, Kilkenny, daughter of John BERGIN and Alice BYRNE. She was baptized on 11 Jan 1835 in the Roman Catholic church,, sponsored by Edward BYRNE and Mary BRENNAN.
On 21st June 1853 Bridget sailed aboard the vessel "Telegraph" in London, bound for NSW. The ship contained 443 bounty immigrants, 222 of which were single females. The passengers were destined to be mostly agricultural labourers and domestic servants for the colony of NSW. Bridget was 18 years old, a house servant, from Gowran Co, Kilkenny Ireland, Her father John and mother Alice were still living in Gowran. Bridget could read and write, and had a cousin in the colony Mary Balkin(sp?) She was of good health. On arrival in September 1853, the women were marched along Macquarie Street, to the Hyde Park Barracks , now the Female Immigration Centre. Here they were prepared for selection by employees for the labour market. It is not known who Bridget went to work for but it is likely it was in the Hunter Valley region of NSW.
On 13 Jan 1856 Bridget BERGIN married David DUNNING, a native of County Down Ireland in teh Catholic Church at West Mailtand. Both made their mark, indicating that Bridget could not write.
Twelve children were born of this union: William John (1857), Alexander (1858), James (1859), Eliza Jane (1861) Alice Mary (1863), Margaret Isabella (1864), Henry Thomas (1867) , Bridget May (1869) , David John (1870), Agnes (1873), Anastasia (1876) and Joseph Samuel (1879). Two daughters, Eliza and Alice became Catholic nuns.
Bridget was left to raise the family, while David spent six months in Maitland prison for theft of goods from a store fire in 1865, then again when he had a run-in with the law for cattle stealing in 1866.
Bridget died on 23rd November 1902 of diabetes.
" Mrs David Dunning, an old and respected resident of Paterson, passed away peacefully to her long home on Sunday last and was interred in the R. C. cemetery on Tuesday morning."
Bridget was buried alongside her young daughter Agnes who had died in 1882. The remainder of her children married and had large families. My grandfather is James DUNNING (1859).
|Date of Birth||1835 (circa)|