William Fanning of Murrurundi, NSW and Loughmore Co Tipperary 1800-1861

William Fanning, originally from Loughmore Co Tipperary Ireland, died in 1861, age 60, at his residence in NSW. He was born about 1800 and is buried in Haydonton Cemetery NSW.

A William Fanning, originally from Loughmore Co Tipperary Ireland, died in 1861, age 60, at his residence in NSW. He was born about 1800 and is buried in Haydonton Cemetery NSW.

I came across his death notice when searching in Trove digital newspapers which keep getting more and more Australian newspapers added all the time. An fantastic free resource for genealogists.

William Fanning Death notice Murrurundi 14 Dec 1861 Freeman's Journalcr2
Death notice of William Fanning of Murrurundi Freeman’s Journal 14 Dec 1861

There is a story that about ten years after my gggrandfather came out to Australia in 1841 a group of relatives arrived. The story goes that he was not very welcoming and they stayed in his stables. But he also let them stay on some land he had in the city of Melbourne. I have not been able to track them down so am always interested when I come across Fannings from the area in which my ancestors lived.

I had a look around and found that his father was a James Fanning and mother Margaret. There was also a William Fanning aged 48 who arrived on the “China” in 1854 with his family either to Newcastle or Sydney. This could be him as the age is about right.

With him on the China was Mary aged 14, Mary aged 46, Margaret aged 19, Anne aged 16 and Catherine aged 10. Given that he had all daughters the Fanning name would have disappeared in Murrurundi. Catherine married Joseph Greer in Murrurundi in 1867.

Mary his wife died in 1878. Her father was William and her mother Mary.

There are records in North Tipperary Rootsweb for Mary Fanning born 1837 and Catherine born 1842 both in Holycross Parish Co Tipperary to William Fanning and Mary Cronin.

William Fanning Death 1861 Murrurundi NSWcr
Death certificate of William Fanning of Loughmore & Murrurundi died 1861



Like to hear from anyone with more information on this William Fanning and his parents back in Ireland.


Author: Kathleen

I have done an Ancestry DNA test and also have uploaded my test results to GedMatch. My GedMatch kit numbers are A029138 and T470174. Please contact me if we are a match. kathleenmfanningAThotmailDOTcom

19 thoughts on “William Fanning of Murrurundi, NSW and Loughmore Co Tipperary 1800-1861”

  1. My 2 great grandfather , Frederick Fanning , arrived Sydney 1858. His elder brother , William Fanning , arrived Sydney 1842. As far as I understand they both settled in the Melbourne area. Currently researching my Fanning ancestors and am in touch with some of William’s descendents , my 4th cousins , in Australia most of whom live in the Melbourne area.

      1. Further online research turned up the Australian Dictionary of Biography site which has a very useful page on my 2 gt. grandfather , Frederick , his son William Joseph (my gt. grandfather) and Frederick’s elder brother William. This answered a lot of pending queries. They had extensive cattle and sheep ranches in Queensland and New South Wales under the firm Griffiths, Fanning and Co.

        William Joseph Fanning managed a cattle ranch at Wooroowoolgen near Casino in New England district of NSW.

        Have a look at http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/fanning-frederick-3894

        On the Irish connection , Frederick and William (married Oriana nee Richardson) were sons of William Fanning (1785 – 1859) and Sophia Cecilia (nee Harley) – William’s father was Caesar Fanning , born Cork 1748 and subject of my main query for which you’ve already kindly provided much useful research info. This William , son of Caesar , died in London with recorded house there so the family evidently made the move from Ireland to England during his life.

        Interested to know if either of my two William Fannings here who settled in Australia for three decades in the mid 19th century tie up with yours. Fanning is a fairly common Irish name so there likely may have been a few William Fannings arriving in Australia at that period of history.

        1. Hi James,
          As your Fanning ancestors came from Co Cork it is unlikely that they are related to my Tipperary ancestors.Going a long way back we are probably related as my brother’s DNA test came up a match with Edmund Fanning who ended up in Connecticut.
          Re your search for Caesar’s parents. I think the only way you could find these names is to find his marriage record, or his birth record. These are not online but are at the National Library in Dublin on microfiche. So either a visit to Dublin or hire someone to search for you. These records would also be in the parish in Cork. If their records go back this far. At least you know where he lived: Civil Parish of Cork Holy Trinity (Christ Church) Catholic parish of St Patrick’s in Cork City. Marriages took place in the wife’s parish which can complicate the search for the marriage record.The other place I would search is cemetery records and see if someone has transcribed and hope to find a family plot!A long shot. Good luck searching.

          1. James, corkarchives.ie has these Fannings:
            Fanning Mrs. 5 Harbour View Terrace
            Fanning James Huxter 2 Portney’s Lane
            Fanning Misses Milliners &
            20 Grand Parade
            Fanning John & Caesar Paper Stainers &
            House Painters
            23 Patrick Street
            From Aldwell’s General Post Office Directory Cork City 1845

          2. Had a look on familysearch.org and they have a marriage of a Cosar Fanning in Cork 1848. This may well be a transcription error and be your Caesar.If you find a Latter Day Saints office near you you will be able to look at the record without a trip to Dublin! The other place to look would be ancestry.com if you don’t have a subscription they give free 14 day trials. An ancestry search shows he married Esther Henrietta Dobson. Am not a member so can’t get any more details.

  2. Very many thanks once again for more illuminating info ! 1748 is the year I have for Caesar’s birth (BLG source) so could Cosar Fanning be Caesar Fanning’s father perhaps with his marriage in the same year assuming a transcription error on familysearch. In the Lucas 1787 Cork Directory there is a “Fanning ( C )” immediately beneath “Fanning ( Caesar )” so the “C” could perhaps stand for Cosar. For a while now I’ve been contemplating a trip over to Cork to further research as you’ve suggested and will do this if I can’t get past this current brick wall – but at the moment sense a sustained crumbling of this wall !

    The main reason I’m interested in Caesar and verifying his parents is that on the family tree I have , which was drawn up in 1950 by an Australian Fanning relative, Caesar is shown as brother to Edmund Fanning , great grandson of the original Edmund Fanning senior you mention who emigrated to the American colonies (Connecticut) in 1653 following confiscation of the Fanning lands in Ireland by Oliver Cromwell. The American Fanning generations are well recorded in the Walter Brooks family history available online which I’m sure you’ve also looked at – the problem is that Edmund (supposedly brother to Caesar) is born in New York province (1739) along with all his ten other siblings none of whom are named Caesar. His parents are a Capt. James Fanning and wife Hannah (nee Smith) , Capt James being Edmund Fanning senior’s grandson. There is one intriguing possibility however – Capt. James’ wife Hannah is recorded as dying aged 48 on the journey back home (ie, America) from England in 1750 , presumably on board ship , so if she had been in England it would seem very possible she had also been in Ireland (with Fanning family). Could she have given birth to Caesar there ? She would have been 45 or 46 when she conceived with her previous birth some six years earlier , not to mention having already born eleven children, so it would seem quite a long shot but still very possible.

    Edmund Fanning had a very interesting life firstly as a Royalist during the American war of independence in opposition to most of his family who supported the republican cause , then was governor of Canada’s Prince Edward Island for 19 years – Wikipedia has a couple of pages on him. He ended his days in London and is buried at St. Mary Abotts Church in Kensington High Street where there’s a large plaque to him.

    1. The marriage date for Cosar Fanning is 1848!! so he would have been a very sprightly 100. This Cosar could have been a son or grandson of Caesar which doesn’t really help you. Sorry to raise your hopes. What is BLG source?

      The 1950 tree may be accurate but many times people put all sorts of things in family trees and so many people want to be related to this Edmund Fanning.It does seem unlikely that Caesar is a grandson of Edmund but you can’t completely rule it out, which is your quandary.

      The Irish seem to be incredibly conservative with Christian names and basically use only a handful! They also are fairly consistent in their naming patterns. First son after the father etc whereas the Americans were very creative with their naming. Caesar doesn’t seem like a very Irish name.I searched on Rootsireland for all counties and there are only two records for a Caesar Fanning and they are Grifiths Valuation entries for your Caesar. Someone really lashed out calling their son Caesar.

      So did Hannah go to England to have a child?? and die of complications on the way back, having left the child, Caesar, with relatives in Cork???

      BTW what religion were your Fannings? Catholic or Protestant? and do you know the names of Caesar’s children if he had any?

      One way you could go about solving, maybe, the connection with Edmund Fanning of Connecticut is to have a DNA test. Family Tree DNA do them. You could get the cheapest 12 marker and if it isn’t a match with the Edmund Fanning line, end of story. If it does match you could go to the 37 marker etc. Of course if it is a match it doesn’t necessarily mean your 1950 tree is accurate as you could still be related to this Edmund as my family are. We are related through Edmund’s family who stayed in Ireland.

  3. Yes , thanks – I actually meant that the transcription error might have been the date rather than “marriage” , ie , 1748 instead of 1848. I’ll give you the BLG reference when I’ve found it somewhere in old email from a genealogist connected to my family whose brains I’d already picked a while ago. I recall it was quite a long reference with vols. and page numbers , etc.

    The DNA test sounds a good idea – I’m now looking at how to go about this.

    I’m also in touch with a direct descendant of the originator of the family tree in Australia who has his old research records and am asking for the source material for his ascertion that Caesar and Edmund were brothers.

    Very many thanks again for all your help.

    1. Yes I agree the date could also be wrong. Good luck with your search and please let me know how you go and where you end up. I am very curious as to whether Caesar is a grandson of Edmund Fanning the American immigrant. regards Kathleen

      1. Hi James, if you get to Dublin these are the records in the National Library.
        Looked in Brian Mitchell’s Guide to Irish Parish Registers for Cork East records:
        Civil Parish name is Cork Holy Trinity
        Church of Ireland church or parish? is Christ Church records begin 1643 and St Luke records beginning 1837.
        Roman Catholic St Mary’s first records 1748 and St Patrick’s 1831
        Presbyterian Cork Trinity 1832 and Queen Street 1862
        There were also Methodists, Baptists, Congregationalists and Quakers in Cork East but no dates for records so they would only be held locally, if at all.
        Brian Mitchell’s excellent book which I use a lot, A New Genealogical Atlas of Ireland, has maps of the parishes so you can see nearby ones.

  4. Many thanks once again for these further clues in the paper trail.

    The BLG entry reference I was given is as follows – the title on the A3 document is presumably the professional search reference made when the original 1950 tree was drawn up :


    “FANNING formerly of BOZEDOWN”

    5 pages in total are numbered in print at the top and in manuscript at the bottom of each page 1698 through 1702. CAESAR FANNING appears halfway down the first page “of Cork, m., and had issue” then follows only one child “William Fanning of 10 Gloucester Gardens, Finchley”.

    I’ve tried to find these referenced page numbers in BLG online but access requires various hoops to pass through and maybe it would be easier to visit a library somewhere where BLG can be perused.

    My family’s religion has been protestant as far as I’m aware back to at least my 2 great grandfather (Caesar’s grandson). Further back than this I’m not sure. On a tangent to this , one interesting comment in the Walter Brooks American Fanning family book is that he surmises the original Edmund Fanning senior emigrant to Connecticut may likely have changed his Catholic religion to Protestant in order to fit in with the other local settlers he found himself amongst.

    1. I goggled Bozedown and ended up at the Australian Dictionary of Biography on Edward Fanning, son of William, nephew of Frederick:

      “Edward Fanning (1848-1917), businessman, was born on 16 March 1848 at Sydney, the second son of William Fanning, merchant, and his wife Oriana, née Richardson, who were then visiting New South Wales. Named for his ancestor, the discoverer of Fanning Island, Edward grew up at Bozedown, near Reading, England,”

      The discoverer of Fanning Island being a descendant of Edmund Fanning of Connecticut.

  5. Yes , snap – I did the same with Bozedown and Google getting the Aus. Dict of Biog. account on Edward Fanning. It is his son , Col. Rupert Fanning , who produced the 1950 family tree I’m using. I’m in touch with the grand daughter of Col. Rupert’s sister (Beryl) in Australia who has his old tree research records , awaiting her response.

    The discoverer of Fanning Island (today called “Tabuaeran” and one of the Kirbati pacific islands nation) is another Edmund – Capt. Edmund Fanning who commanded the “Betsey” 1797 – 98 , and he is a close relative (nephew, I think – Walter Brooks American Fanning history book would confirm relationship) of the other Edmund Fanning who is supposedly brother to my Caesar Fanning. Wikipedia have pages on both Capt. Edmund and the other Prince Edward island governor Edmund.

    1. There is a death notice for Caesar Fanning in the Cork Examiner for May 1857 and there are a lot of ads for John and Caesar Fanning and their wallpaper manufacturing and supply business.I just saw the index not the full text of the death notice as I don’t have a subscription to fmp

  6. Thank you again. With only the one son , William , listed in BLG for my 1748 born Caesar Fanning and dying in England 1859 , this death notice in the Cork Examiner of 1857 for another Caesar raises further questions of course – quite likely to be a relative , especially as they all seem to be in the paper staining / wall paper business , but could he possibly be another son not listed in BLG (and who remained in Ireland) given that the first name is pretty unusual ?

    At any rate the father of Australian Edward Fanning , William , seemed to think he was related to Captain Edmund Fanning of the Betsey and Fanning island , according to the Australian Dictionary of Biography. This was back in 1848 (birth of Edward) and only 50 years after Edmund’s voyage so one might draw the conclusion their information on the family connection should at least be quite accurate. This family connection would also supposedly come through the alleged Caesar – Edmund brother relationship which is of course what I’m trying to verify.

    The best reference I’ve seen so far for my 1748 born Caesar Fanning that you kindly provided is from the Lucas Cork Directory for 1787 , page 142 , with a Caesar Fanning listed as a Paper Stainer in Castle Street. The dates all tie in well. My focus therefore has to be on tracing this Caesar’s parents.

    1. James, there is an earlier mention of a Caesar fanning in Cork in the Irish Arts Review on Irish Period Wallpaper,
      “It is at
      least possible that the Ballinterry papers were made in Cork –
      the existence of a wallpaper manufactory in Cork in the eigh
      teenth century is shown by a notice placed in the Cork Evening
      Post of 30 April 1773 by one Caesar Fanning, advertising his
      ‘stamp’d paper manufactury on the Mall’.

  7. Hi, found your website whilst researching my family history on the Greer family that settled at Blandford near Murrurundi. Joseph Greer, who married Catherine Fanning was my ggrandfathers brother.

    It is Catherine that has me a bit confused, because the same as you I considered she was part of the family of Mary and William; Margaret, Anne and Mary. It also follows that she was near them in Armidale and Tenterfield after her and Joseph left Murrurundi as that’s where they lived for a time before going to the NSW North Coast area. The mother, Mary, died in Murrurundi in 1878.

    Anne and Mary did not marry and settled in Tenterfield, NSW, where Mary died in 1898 and Anne in 1913.

    I believe Margaret married Edward Walker in Armidale in 1863 and died at Uralla, NSW in 1907.

    Catherine and Joseph then settled in the Ballina area, where Joseph died. Catherine then went to Sydney and lived at Waverley, where she died in 1928.

    All fits with the family until Catherine’s headstone which has her parents as John and Mary, not William and Mary like the others. Also, Catherine had a son Denis prior to marrying Joseph, and he became a Greer.

    This has tossed me a bit so hope you may be able to assist. I have a lot of other info on Catherine and Joseph’s family if you are interested.

    1. That is puzzling but may just be a mistake. I checked NSW BDM index for her death and they have John as her father. If you were to purchase her 1867 marriage record that should have the right father’s name as Catherine would have known his name.Let me know.
      I am interested in William’s Irish origins and family, trying to see if I am related. So if you have any info on his Irish ancestors I’d love to have a look.

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