Missing Friends advertisements in the newspapers can both sad and optimistic. They can also illuminate our immigrants in numbers of ways:
- Revealing kinship relationships (siblings, cousins, parents)
- Loss of contact over long periods of time (anywhere from months to decades)
- Location of people in their early days here (Dan Shay in Dalby, thousands of kilometres away on a property in Queensland, yet advertising in Melbourne)
- Prospective inheritance
- Specific place of origin (Mary Shay from Macroom)
- No knowledge of a person’s fate: alive or dead (O’Hara)
- Co-dependence on others from the same area.
1867 ‘Advertising’, The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1957), 9 July, p. 1. , viewed 04 May 2016, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article5771819
Why not try searching for your family using “Missing Persons” AND “County X” or “Name”? As always be aware that the OCR can do weird things especially in those early days of newsprint.
Why not set up a list for your specific county or area so you can batch similar ads together?
I’m using this strategy to discover emigrants from County Clare as part of my East Clare research.
And yes, poor Jeremiah did die, apparently without seeing his brother since there are no parents listed on the death indexes. (Ancestry.com. Australia, Death Index, 1787-1985 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.)