John Dunn and Elizabeth Davis


Though the records remain somewhat confusing, I suspect John and Elizabeth were the parents of John Dunn.

References: Monaroo Pioneers
John Dunn, son of John Dunn and Jane, was born in 1813 in Ireland and died on July 22, 1894 in Bombala, NSW1 at age 81. NSW BDM Index, 3090/1894.
John married Elizabeth Davis. Elizabeth was born in 1821 in Ireland and died on August 25, 1883 in Nelbothery near Bombala, NSW2 at age 62. SW BDM Index, 9403/1883.

Fact – they were living in Australia in 1843.

Question – did they come to Australia separately or were they immmigrants?

As Monaroo Pioneers lists only children born in Australia, can we take it they came separately and married here. In which case, where’s the marriage record? There’s no marriage record for them in NSW. So were they not married? Or were they married overseas? Did they come to Australia with young children?

On the Assisted Immigrants register, there’s a bunch of people who might fit the bill.

DUNN John – William Abrams 1841 Port Phillip and Hanna and family Reel 2144, [4/4814] Page 2
DUNN John – Robert Benn 1842 Port Phillip Reel 2144, [4/4814] Page 203
DUNN John – Middlesex 1841 Port Phillip Reel 2144, [4/4814] Page 42
DUNN John – Enmore 1841 Port Phillip Reel 2144, [4/4814] Page 93

Was John a convict? There’s a convict pardon which needs exploration.

DUNN John – Susan 1834 47/552 CP 30 Jul 1847 [4/4452] 784 – 103-104
John Dunn
John Dunn, one of 300 convicts transported on the Susan, 07 March 1834
Known aliases: none
Convicted at: Convicted at Chester Assizes for a term of life on 03 August 1833.
Sentence term: Life
Ship name: Susan
Departure date: 7th March, 1834
Place of arrival: New South Wales

1841 Census

DUNNJohn800Mill Bight, Parish Frederick, County Cumberland, District Windsor[X951]792223
DUNNJohn306Surry Hills, Parish Alexandria, County Cumberland, District Sydney[X950]572223
DUNNJohn298Town Parramatta[X948]292222


They lived in the Queanbeyan District, probably near Woden according to the birth records of their children between at least 1843 and 1853.

Reference: Monaroo Pioneers
James DUNN b: 20 Jan 1843 in Queanbeyan, NSW
John DUNN b: 13 Mar 1847 in Queanbeyan, NSW
Bernard DUNN b: 1848 in Queanbeyan, NSW
Elizabeth DUNN b: 1851 in Queanbeyan, NSW
Esther A. DUNN b: 6 Oct 1853 in Queanbeyan, NSW


  • James DUNN b: 20 Jan 1843 in Queanbeyan, NSW.  The Delegate Argus of Thursday 2 February 1928 reported

We regret to report the death of Mr. James Dunn, an old resident of this district, who died at his home on Sunday morning last. He was ill for eight weeks, and for the first three weeks was in the Delegate Hospital. Mr. Dunn had reached the advanced age of 85 years, and during his long life he had never had occasion to seek medical advice until about two months ago. Mr. Dunn belonged to the early pioneering class. He was born at Canberra on January 20th. 1843. In the fifties he made trips to Sydney with his father, the late John Dunn,carting the wool clips from the stations with a bullock team. One trip Mr. Dunn spoke of was around trip from Sydney to Melbourne. They also carted goods to Kiandra in its flourishing days.He came to Southern Monaro with his parents in the early sixties. Mr. Dunn was an upright man and had a genial disposition and he was highly respected. He leaves a widow and a large family, to whom we extend our sympathy. The daughters are Mrs.W. Boardman (Yass), Mrs. W.Wrightson (Leeton), Mrs. G. J.Johnson (Queanbeyan), Mrs. F.Henry (Nimbin), Mrs. J. O’Brien(Sydney), Miss Marcella Dunn,and the sons are John, William,Charles. The funeral took place on Tuesday afternoon last at the Roman Catholic portion of the Delegate cemetery and was largely attended. In the absence of Rev. Father Roche, Mr. D. Campbell read the burial service.

  • John DUNN b: 13 Mar 1847 in Queanbeyan, NSW. A further report of his death in the Delegate Argus (NSW : 1906 – 1943), Thursday 22 September 1927, page 2 provides some further information about John and his family.

The death took place at Bombala on Monday morning last of Mr. John Dunn, an old and well known resident of that district. He had reached the advanced age of 80 years and had’been ailing for some years past. He was a native of the district, having been born at Quidong. A widow and crown-up family, survive him. Deceased was a brother of Mrs. D. Stokes and Mr. James Dunn, of Delegate. He was a noted runner in his early days and ‘will be remembered’ by many old hands as one of the champions of his time; The funeral, which was largely attended, took place on Tuesday at the Bombala Cemetery. Rev. Father Roche conducted the burial service. Mr. Dunn was an old member of the Grand United Order of ‘Oddfellows’ members of that Order marched in the funeral procession.

Bernard DUNN b: 1848 in Queanbeyan, NSW

Elizabeth DUNN b: 1851 in Queanbeyan, NSW

Esther A. DUNN b: 6 Oct 1853 in Queanbeyan, NSW

The Bega Gazette and Eden District or Southern Coast Advertiser of Wednesday 5 September 1883, refers to “The Times announces tho death of Mrs. Dunn, senior, of Quidong”

The name “Woden” was given to the 2500 acres of land bought by Dr James Murray in 1837. He named his property “Woden” after the Norse God of War who was also the patron of learning.


Dunn, David, d. 28 May 1857, age: 1 day, RC Sec, Unmarked
Dunn, Ferdinand James, d. 26 Mar 1868, age: 76yr, RC Sec, Unmarked
Dunn, Johanna Gorman, b. Ireland, d. 28 Jun 1893 Woden, RC Sec, Unmarked
Dunn, John, b. Ireland, d. 8 Oct 1890, age: 71yr, h/o Johanna (Gorman), RC Sec, Unmarked
Dunn, Patrick Newell Blanchard, d. 22 Oct 1894, age: 5wks, RC Sec, Unmarked
Dunn, Thomas, b. 13 Nov 1855 Yarralumla, d. 13 Aug 1856, age: 9 mths, RC Sec, Unmarked

1870 GREVILLES Lists a farmer, John living in Queanbeyan. Was that him? Or his son?  (have checked and it wasn’t him, as this john dunn farmer, is listed in the insolvency court and died a few weeks later.

The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 – 1954)


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By 1883, they were living in the Bombala District.

Elizabeth Davis died at Nelbothery in 1883-
BOMBALA.-The Eureka Water and Sluicing Company has been organized, and commenced operations by turning the first soil on the 17th instant. From Commissioner Scott’s report there can be little doubt as to the richness of the locality, and, if a sufficient supply of water can be obtained, theris reason to believe that the Nelbothery will become a large and payable gold-field. During the past week the weather has been very boisterous, and an immense quantity of rain has fallen. – Twofold Bay Observer. The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW: 1842-1954) Thursday 24 January 1861

1894 – John died at Bombala

2 Replies to “John Dunn and Elizabeth Davis”

  1. my name is robert lawson ,seeking info on what or not be family ,don’t know much but a john thomas dunn is in the tumut cemetry ,,from what i can remember he had a sawmill in the area around kiandra , my grandmother was a dunn and had a child out of weldlock called irene , she then wen’t onto marry an irish man called moorehead, any help would be great

    1. John Thomas dunn is my great great grandfather, he had a partner called Emma, had kids William is that dad of my pop Colin dunn

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