Catherine WALLACE – Resolving Two

I have just managed to sort out details of two Catherine WALLACEs: one born about 1879 in New Zealand; the second born 1881 in New Zealand.

The first Catherine Wallace: Based on NZ BDM records, and school records, Catherine WALLACE born 15 Jan 1881, was the daughter of John Henry WALLACE and Ellen PAWSON.  Catherine was born in the South Island. I had her married to Moses CORKIN in 1900, based on NZ marriage records.

The second Catherine Wallace: The second  Catherine WALLACE appeared when I received copies of the marriage registration of Catherine WALLACE and Moses CORKIN, and death registration of Catherine CORKIN. Both documents had Catherine WALLACE as the daughter of James WALLACE and Catherine CHITHAM (also in my Wallace family tree). Two children of James WALLACE and Catherine CHITHAM appeared to be witnesses to the wedding.  Arthur WALLACE and Sarah WALLACE gave their address as Hereford Road (I presume near Tauranga – the only Hereford Road Google Maps finds for NZ). Both names appeared in my tree as children of James WALLACE and Catherine CHITHAM.

My conclusion was that the two Catherines were different people (second cousins), with the one who married Moses CORKIN being the daughter of James WALLACE and Catherine CHITHAM.

However, that was not the end?  A search of NZ BDM records does not turn up a birth of Catherine WALLACE, daughter of James WALLACE and Catherine CHITHAM.   Some of their children in my tree are in the records, but some appear to be missing.  Catherine’s birth year was somewhere about 1879 – Marriage at 22 years  in 1900 – birth about 1878; Death at  58 years in 1938 – birth about 1880.

Finding the first Catherine – I looked at the deaths of Catherine WALLACE from 1881-1991 (this assumes no marriage, and daughter of John Henry WALLACE and Ellen PAWSON stayed in NZ) – There were 18 matches, and when age is taken into account the following is closest – Catherine d 1966 in Dunedin aged 83, b about 1883. However, she was a widow according to the burial records and is buried with William Thomas G WALLACE, so not the right person.

My next option was to look for death of a Catherine WALLACE who had married between 1898 and 1940 – there were 7 between 1900 and 1920 (but more with two first names that I did not investigate).  The closest match was Charles William ALVE, who married Catherine WALLACE in 1911. They both died in Palmerston North, Catherine in 1967 aged 86 – she was born about 1881 according to this record.

I then back to family notes I had received previously, and found the following in my notes about John Henry WALLACE:  In 1887 John Henry and Ellen moved to Eketahuna where John worked part-time as a Blacksmith, part-time as a Sawmill Engineer. Later in life they retired to Rangiotu Line, Palmerston North, where their daughter Catherine Alve lived. This information was not in my family tree.

The first Catherine WALLACE was born 18 Jan 1881 at Duvauchelle on Akaroa Harbor, Canterbury, the daughter of John Henry WALLACE and Ellen PAWSON. Catherine married Charles William ALVE in 1911, and was known as Dolly. She died a widow 02 Feb 1967 in Foxton. She was buried with her husband in Palmerston North.

Photo of ALVE headstone.
ALVE headstone in Terrace End Cemetery, Palmerston North.

Finding the second Catherine – My next task was to find out how Catherine WALLACE fitted into the family of James WALLACE and Catherine CHITHAM. According to my tree, the family had fourteen children born between 1869 and 1892. A Catherine WALLACE was born in Wanganui in 1870, but died in 1871. A birth date in 1879 did not appear to fit very well with surrounding birth dates.

I returned to family trees I had collected to see if I had missed anything. A family tree for James WALLACE and Catherine CHITHAM, that gave the desendants of Catherine’s brother William WALLACE (b 1873),  had the following useful information. Other children of James and Caroline: Charlotte, married Charles Corkin.

Caroline WALLACE was in my tree, born 1883 in Wanganui, NZ. Moses CORKIN was known as Charles as well as Moses.

My conclusion was the second Catherine WALLACE was born Caroline WALLACE in 1883 in Wanganui, but she used the name Catherine during her married life.  She married Moses Charles CORKIN in 1900 in New Plymouth. Both Catherine and Charles died in New Plymouth and were buried in Stratford.

If Caroline’s birth was registered (or Catherine), I have yet to find a record. Can you help?


7 thoughts on “Catherine WALLACE – Resolving Two

  1. I knew Catherine Alve (nee Wallace) as a young boy in the 1960’s until her death in a rest home at Foxton, NZ in 1967. She initially lived at the top of our farm at Rangitane until she needed to move to the rest home. I used to regularly visit her at the Home until her death in 1967 when I was 15. I have her and other family detailed BDM records.

  2. This is the record I have re Caroline

    Caroline Chitham Pedigree

    Birth: 15 MAY 1850 , Auckland, New Zealand
    Marriage: 28 MAY 1868 , Wellington, New Zealand
    Death: 28 JUN 1935

  3. Catherine Alve known as Dolly (née Wallace) was a sister of my grandmother May McLeod (née Wallace). I recall Catherine (known to our family as “young Aunty Cis”,) visiting my family home in Hamilton. She was the aunt of my mother, Jean Kilpatrick. She was small in stature and dressed in black. I have a couple of photos of her. My mother visited her in the Foxton home. There was an “old Aunty Cis” the wife of our relative John (Jack) Pawson who lived at the North end of Victoria Street, Hamilton. I need to check on this.

  4. Great detective work there. I have some information on Moses Corkin and his relatives. Moses didn’t have a good start to life and ended up in the Burnham Industrial School as a neglected child. – taken out of reach of his father who then spent several years in court for refusing to pay for his keep. His sister Rebecca also married a boy from the same Industrial School and a life of misery ensued… Moses appears to be out of trouble as an adult although he does appear in a court case as a witness to his brother-in-laws violent attempt to attack his now ex-wifes partner and threatening to kill her. There was a large family but Moses doesn’t appear on the NZ BDM, along with another brother or two who are not there. If you want more contact me through my email. Cheers, Gayle

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