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James Robert Dudley

August 1841 - 13th September 1912

James Robert DUDLEY was born in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, at a place called Drummington. Drummington may have been a house, property or farm as no details can be found. No birth record can be found for James Robert DUDLEY, all known dates that can be associated with him, indicate that he was born circa 1841 and possibly in August of that year.

 It is believed that James Robert DUDLEY was the only son of James and Martha DUDLEY (nee Hodges); however, there may have been sisters. Family stories state that James Robert DUDLEY was sent to boarding school in New York, but was unhappy, so he took the money his parents gave him to pay school fees and ran away when he was 16. It is said that his parents James and Martha were involved in the shipping industry on the Great Lakes and were well-to-do; James Robert DUDLEY however states on his marriage certificate that they were farmers.

Sometime between 1847 and 1875 James Robert DUDLEY immigrated to Australia, the first record found for him, his marriage certificate, locates him in Queensland in 1875. James Robert DUDLEY died in 1912 and on his death certificate it states that he lived in Queensland for 60 years. This detail was supplied by his brother-in-law, William James SWAINE, who submitted the death details. William James SWAINE was married to James Robert DUDLEY's wife's sister, Emily.

 James Robert DUDLEY was a short, thickset man with a ginger beard and hair. His occupation is listed as sawyer/labourer, but he was probably a jack-of-all-trades. It is told in family stories that he was involved in some way with the Burke and Wills expedition in Melbourne, but left when he was not given a prominent position in the party, however, this can not be corroborated.

 James Robert DUDLEY married Catherine QUINTEL, in 1875. Catherine QUINTEL was the daughter of German immigrates, Martin and Catherine S. QUINTEL (nee MULLER). Catherine QUINTEL was born in 1856 and baptised Church of England by the Rev. William Dove at Halliford, Queensland on 28 September 1856. It is believed the family lived and worked on a property owned by grazier, W.B. Watson.

 Catherine QUINTEL's father Martin QUINTEL was born in approximately 1801, whilst her mother Catherine S. MULLER was born in 1820. Both were born in Necharhausen, Baden, Germany. His parents were Michael and Susannah QUINTEL and hers George and Helena MULLER.

 Martin QUINTEL married Catherine S. MULLER in Germany in approximately 1838. They immigrated to Australia in 1853, taking a ship the SS 'Peru' out of Hamburg Germany and arriving at Sydney on 23 May 1853. After arrival in Australia they lived in Warra Queensland for 2 years, before relocating to the Dalby Queensland, district. Martin QUINTEL's occupation on his shipping records is listed as Vinedresser. Three children made the voyage with them, Michael born in 1843, Martin JNR born 18 Mar 1844 and Amelia born in 1847.

 James Robert and Catherine DUDLEY had nine children. One deceased son was named George Washington DUDLEY. In later years James Robert DUDLEY became a heavy drinker and Catherine DUDLEY took in washing to help support the family.

 Catherine DUDLEY was a tall, slim woman, with dark olive complexion, dark eyes and beautiful waist-length dark hair. She died on 27 Jul 1906 in the Dalby hospital from cancer of the uterus. She was buried in the Dalby Monumental Cemetery, plot 1326, on 28 Jul 1906.

 After Catherine DUDLEY's death it seems that James Robert DUDLEY lost contact with the family. It is said that one of his sons learnt of his father's death from an overheard conversation in a local pub. James Robert DUDLEY died in Chinchilla on 13th September 1912 from heart failure and senile decay.  

 Martin QUINTEL, JNR who was unmarried, was naturalised as an Australian citizen in February 1913 at the age of 68. Many Germans immigrants decided to become citizens in the period leading up to World War 1. He lived in the Dalby district for 50 years, and then went to Tallegalla, near Marberg Qld.

 Catherine MULLER had a daughter, Emma or Emily, who was born in 1874 before Catherine's marriage to James Robert DUDLEY. It is assumed that James was not the father. Emma/Emily later went to Newcastle district of New South Wales, where she married and had a family, nothing further is know of her.






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