And even as I begin this post an email arrives. It is from a local historian in Victoria where apparently, national aliens and deserters records are held.
Because I do not live in Victoria she has very kindly done a search. I am eternally grateful. It may lead nowhere but then again it might.
We have a C. Ross, A.B.(presumably meaning Able Bodied), deserted 2/1/1881 from the ship ‘Fron Crag’. This is nearly eight years before he married Mary Atkins but it is the best I have for the moment. I shall have to do some searching into the Fron Crag. It really is a long shot but any shot is better than no shot at all. It may not even be from the South Australian archives.
And the first thing I discover is that it is very likely there was an Iron Crag and Fron Crag is a typographical error. Such is the way of things with family research. The Iron Crag was an iron barque built by the Whitehaven Ship Building Company in December 1877 and she was posted as missing in the Liverpool Mercury newspaper, on Friday, April 19, 1895. That’s 115 years ago in a week’s time. She had left Manta, Ecuador on October 3, 1894, with a cargo of ivory nuts in bulk and bags headed for Hamburg. She was seen by another ship on January 28, 1895, some 800 miles off the English Channel and then she disappeared. Some 18 persons were on board. Her journey from London had taken her to Brisbane and Newcastle before Ecuador.
I may be wrong but my instinct is that the date of 1881 is too early for Charlie Ross. But then who knows? My next step is to do some research on aliens and deserters through the South Australian Genealogy society.
Beyond that not a lot seems to be happening but then I have not had time to do much research or follow-up. I did get in touch with some Simper relatives through Facebook and sent on to them photos that I had of their grandfather and great-grandfather, Laurie Simper.
Nothing has come of my other 'feelers' and I shall have to ring the Greek Orthodox Church to see if I can track down cousin David Ross, our Greek Orthodox monk.
Waiting, waiting, waiting.