James Sheffield
William Ernest Sheffield
Lucy Ann Sheffield

Jacob Sheffield, the grandfather of William Ernest and Lucy Ann Sheffield, was born on 3 June 1832 to William and Sarah (née Hale) Sheffield. His parents, who were married on 22 March 1831, are known to have had at least five other children: John (bap. 27 July 1834), Mary Ann1 (bap. 20 November 1836; d. 10 January 1839), Mary Ann2 (bap. 23 June 1839), Elizabeth (bap. 18 June 1843) and William (bap. 12 August 1845: d. 13 August 1845).

By the time of the 1851 census of the small village of Alwalton, Huntingdonshire, Jacob had left home and was working as a labourer. William (48) and Sarah (47) were then living with their younger children—John (16), Mary Ann2 (10) and Elizabeth (8).

Jacob Sheffield married Mary Ann Julyan, the daughter of Joseph Julyan, in St Andrew’s Church of England in Alwalton on 12 April 1854. The service was conducted by the local incumbent, the Reverend Edward Gray MA (1826-1908), and the witnesses to the wedding were Lucy Payne and Mary Ann Sheffield who was probably Jacob’s sister of that name.

Four weeks later on 13 May 1854 Jacob and Mary Ann, aged 22 and 21 respectively, were among the 394 government immigrants on board the 1000-ton Monsoon (Captain Bogart) when it set sail for Australia from Liverpool. They arrived in Brisbane on 13 August of that year.

Jacob and Mary Ann raised a large family: Lucy (b. 8 April 1857; d. 9 September 1875); William (b. 4 March 1859; m.1 Catherine Ann O’Sullivan 10 August 1878; m.2 Margaret Heathwood 20 June 1894; d. 5 December 1911); James (b. Moggill 16 April 1861; m. Elizabeth Sarah Ann Weeks 2 April 1885; d. 23 July 1896); Annie (b. 13 September 1863; m. John Hair 12 October 1882; d. 23 January 1907); Fanny1 (b. 10 May 1868; d. 3 March 1869); Fanny2 (b. 18 July 1870; d. 24 July 1870); Mary (b. ?; d. 22 August 1870); Samuel Joseph (b. about 1876; d. 16 September 1929).

Jacob worked for some time as a drayman for the enterprising Richard Symes Warry. He died on 7 June 1900 aged 68 and was buried in the South Brisbane Cemetery in a grave (8C 383) that would later receive the remains of his wife Mary Ann who passed away aged 89 on 11 July 1922. In the same plot (8C 382) lie the remains of their daughter Annie (d. 23 January 1907 aged 43) and her husband John Hair (d. 6 May 1913 aged 67).

James Sheffield, for some years a bullock team driver who carted timber, married Elizabeth Sarah Ann (Annie) Weeks, the eldest child of Henry and Mary Ann (née King) Weeks, on 2 April 1885, in St Matthew’s Church of England, Sherwood. The Reverend James Samuel Hassall conducted the service and the official witnesses were James Auld and Ellen Weeks. Several members of the Weeks family were laid to rest in God’s Acre. See the entry under their name and a related entry under the Price name.

In a joint venture with Annie’s sister, Adelaide Ellen Augusta, and her husband James Price, the two couples purchased a farm at Seventeen Mile Rocks. However, this property was sold when James Price, tired of farming, decided to seek employment in the railways. James and Annie then bought a dairy farm on the corner of Cook Street and Oxley Road, Oxley.

James and Annie Sheffield became the parents of the following children: Henry James Richard (b. 7 January 1886; m. Edith Ellen Horn 22 November 1911; d. 24 September 1958); William Ernest (b. 12 July 1888; d. 26 April 1935); Robert Edwin (b. 7 December 1890; m. Alice Elizabeth Edwards 20 June 1912; d. 1 April 1957); Arthur Francis (b. 21 September 1893; d. 16 January 1975); Lucy Ann (b. 31 March 1897 after her father’s death; d. 8 July 1992).

James Sheffield passed away in the Brisbane Hospital on 23 July 1896 and was laid to rest in ‘Grenier’s Cemetery, 8 Mile Plains’ two days later in the afternoon. A notice in the Brisbane Courier records that the funeral left from the Oxley residence of his father-in-law Henry Weeks. Assisting at the burial were: William Francis Lyon (undertaker), the Reverend John Stewart Pollock of the Presbyterian Church, and George McCulla and Thomas Johnston (witnesses).

After James’s death Elizabeth Sarah Ann married George Wilkinson (‘Brickie’) Campbell (b. 4 March 1866), the son of John and Christina (née Mitchell) Campbell, on 23 May 1900. There were no children of this marriage. George died on 13 September 1945 and was cremated two days later. Annie, who was living in a house on the corner of Sheffield Street and Oxley Road, Oxley, at the time of her death, passed away aged 94 on 16 February 1956 and was buried in the graveyard of St Matthew’s Church, Sherwood.

William Ernest Sheffield, the son of James and Elizabeth Sarah Ann (née Weeks) Sheffield was born in Moggill, now a Brisbane suburb, on 12 July 1888. He married Edith Mabel Thone on 20 July 1918.

William Ernest (a railway checker) of Appel Street, Chelmer died in the Brisbane Hospital on 26 April 1935 at the age of 46 following an accident while at work. He was laid to rest in the Cooper’s Plains Cemetery on the following afternoon. The funeral left from the residence of his mother and stepfather in Oxley Road, Oxley. The graveside service was conducted by the Reverend Brian Cavanough of the Presbyterian Church in the presence of (A Goodall, undertaker for Cannon and Cripps), and J Dibble and J Dunstan (witnesses).

After William Ernest’s death Edith Mabel married Harry McEwen on 7 August 1937.

Lucy Ann Sheffield (b. 31 March 1897) was the youngest of the children of James and Elizabeth Sarah Ann (née Weeks) Sheffield. She had been living in Oxley Road, Oxley, before taking up residence in the Hopetoun Aged Persons Complex in Cliveden Avenue, Corinda. Two days after she died on 8 July 1992 at the age of 95 her cremation service took place at the Mount Thompson Crematorium.