Week 6 of 52 Ancestors 2021 – Valentine

Week 6 (Feb. 8-14): Valentine

As I have already written about a descendant with the name Valentine (2018 Week 7),  I thought I would search my tree to find someone born on the 14th of February.  I did actually find two people but then I found a marriage. What could be more romantic than being married on Valentines Day!

Maude Harriet Shingles ( my 1st cousin 3 x removed) was born on 13 Jul 1896 in Maffra, Victoria to Frederick James Shingles & Mary Alford.

On the 14th of October 1914, Arthur Abernethy, a young man who had worked in a bakery in Maffra joined the Australian Imperial Force.  His next of kin was listed as Miss M Shingles of Maffra – Fiance. Unfortunately, like so many others, Arthur never made it home.  He was killed on the Gallipoli Peninsula on the 2nd of May 1915, only 7 months after joining the AIF.

Reverend CA Fraser informed Maude of the news of Arthur’s death. (reported in The Maffra Spectator 31 May 1915). 

Arthur Abernethy

Luckily Maude did find everlasting love and on Valentines Day 1917, Maude Harriett Shingles married Walter Lewis Goodwin in Maffra, Victoria. 

Behind the happy couple is Maude’s sister Doris (left) and her niece Victoria (right).

Walter who was born on 6 May 1897 in Balloong, Victoria was the son of James Goodwin and Elizabeth Jane Alford. You might have noticed that their mothers had the same surname – Maude and Walter were first cousins!  Not to be out-done, Maude’s sister Doris Amelia married Walter’s brother Norman Wallace Goodwin in 1920!

Maude and Walter had six beautiful children – Walter Leslie (1918-2002), Leonard Frederick (1919-2015), Maud Mavis (1921-2016), Keith Stanley (1922-1983), Beryl Jean (1929-) & Alan Ingram (1933-2019).  

I have had the privilege of meeting Beryl Gray (and a few of her daughters) a few times.  They are the loveliest women and I hold them very dear to my heart.

Walter died on 30 July 1962 aged 65 in Traralgon, Victoria.  Maude died some 21 years later on 12 July 1983 aged 86 at the home of her daughter Beryl Gray. They were buried together in the Traralgon Cemetery.   

Maude and I are also strangely connected – Not only was I celebrating my 14th birthday the day she died but we were also related through her husband Walter.  Walter was the half sibling of my great-grandaunt Georgina Alford Shingles. Before Walter’s mother married his father she had a child out of wedlock with my 2nd great-grandfather Arthur Shingles (brother to Frederick). Talk about keeping things in the family!

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I have been researching my family history since 2009. I am interested it the family names Shingles, McEwan, Snowdon & Witt around Gippsland and Wodonga areas of Victoria, Australia

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