NZ Grant Family Genealogy - our ancestors and related families




I hope you find elements of my research of interest. I continue to be amazed by just how closely we are all related and therefore what a small world it is. As evidence of that statement, here you will find our ancestral connections with characters as diverse as pirate Sir Christopher Myngs, witch-prosecutor John Innes, priest-hunter David Power, explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton, explorer Robert O'Hara Burke (of the Burke and Wills expedition in Australia), Walt Disney, George Washington, Horace de Vere Cole (hilarious, well-known prankster), Brian Boru, Bonnie Prince Charlie, Flora Macdonald, the usual selection of Plantagenet Kings of England and Stewart Kings of Scotland, Robert the Bruce and William the Conqueror (whom I think every Scot must also descend from), Mary Queen of Scots, ALL of the wives of Henry VIII, more Scottish, English and Irish Dukes than you could shake a stick at, British PMs George Canning, the Duke of Portland, Neville Chamberlain and Theresa May (Boris Johnson has been deliberately excluded for obvious reasons). Our daughters were born in Singapore and so interesting to us is their shared ancestry with the Maxwell family of colonial administrators in Singapore and the Straits Settlements. And on a higher plane, patrons the Medici of Florence and the Visconti of Milan, with the Arts also covered by Irish writers Elizabeth Bowen, John Millington Synge, Lady Gregory (of the Abbey Theatre, Dublin), a favourite direct ancestor Frances Power (subject of O’Carolan’s well-known Irish waltz “Fanny Power”), Ralph Fiennes, Dame Nellie Melba, Cholmeley Austen-Leigh (Jane Austen’s great nephew and biographer) and Cressida Cowell (author of a favourite book of my daughters, ‘How to Train your Dragon’). Brewers and distillers are represented by connections to the Guinness family of Dublin, the Arkell brewing family of Wiltshire, England and the Ross whisky distillers at Teanininch in Ross-shire, Scotland. For NZ context, early colonial Governor Robert Fitzroy (who also commanded the Beagle, carrying Charles Darwin), Governors-General Lord Liverpool and Sir Charles Fergusson, coloniser Col. William Wakefield, premier Edward Stafford. And more locally, Canterbury early settlers John Robert Godley, John Edward Fitzgerald, the Perceval brothers, the Ward Brothers (later of Christchurch brewing fame), members of the Canterbury Association (Most Rev. Richard Chenevix Trench, Dean of Westminster, and Sir William Heathcote). Living where we do, it is fascinating to find ancestral connections to North Canterbury station-owners, especially the Countess Delapasture of St Helens Station (of course!), Marmaduke Bethell of Pahau Pastures, Alexander Ranaldson Macdonell, 17th of Glengarry, a partner in Culverden Station, the Stevensons of St James Station, John Henry Caton of Molesworth Station and the Rev. John Lillie, partner of George Moore of Glenmark Station. Marlborough is also represented with connections to the Vavasours, Cliffords and Welds. And, best of all, All Blacks Moke Belliss, Lin Colling, Ken Bloxham and Phil Gard!

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