Nelms / Nelmes / Elms - Family History

Peter NELMS is a fourth generation Australian. His great great grandfather, John Nelms, and John's son Alfred, sailed from England bound for Australia aboard the barque 'Indus' in 1873. The ship left London on 7 July and arrived in Moreton Bay, Queensland on 8 October 1873. The passengers disembarked in Brisbane the following day.

John was baptised on 27 July 1828 at Great Haseley, Oxfordshire. His parents were Cook NELMS of Shabbington, Buckinghamshire and Harriet LOVEGROVE of Haseley. When John was admitted to the Dunwich Benevolent Infirmary in Brisbane on 5 Jan 1898 he gave his wife's name as Fanny DOUGLAS; and he stated that she had predeceased him about 30 years previously. He left the Infirmary on leave, on 7 Feb 1899, but did not return. John died on 24 May 1903 at Koongal in Queensland and was buried at Rockhampton cemetery. His death certificate lists his wife's name as DINGLE and Alfred as his only child. The 1851 census of Oxfordshire lists John Nelms, unmarried 22, of Haseley working as a footman for the Thornhill family of Stoke Talmage Park.

Alfred was baptised as Alfred DINGLE (born to the unwed Fanny Dingle) on 7 Oct 1855 at Great Milton, Oxfordshire. The 1861 census lists the following, all of Great Milton: Cook NELMES, 65; Harriet NELMES, 59; John NELMES, 32; Alfred NELMES, 6. The 1871 census lists: John NELMES, 42 and Alfred NELMES, 16.

Alfred married Helen HUDSON on 14 May 1875 in Brisbane and he died in 1929. Helen was born in approx 1856 and sailed to Australia from England in 1874 aboard the 'Royal Dane'. Both Alfred and Helen are buried in Toowong Cemetery in Brisbane.

In Australia there are two main Nelms clans, the Queensland clan and the Victorian clan. Although each got to Australia by different means, both are connected back in England. There are also branches of the family in USA and Canada.

The surname " NELMS " was a location name " the dweller at the elms ".

In the old days, when the majority of the people were illiterate, the spelling of the name had a number of variations including Elms, Elme, Nelme, Nelmes, Knelms, and Knelmes.

Motto: Nec Sperno Nec Timeo (I neither despise nor fear).

Links to More Information

Nelms Family Genealogy Forum:
Nelms at Surname Web:
Nelms at Ancestry Boards:
Nelms at DistantCousins:
Nelms Homepages:
Oxfordshire, England - Surnames:
Nelms History in USA:
Oxfordshire Family History Society:
Oxfordshire History:
Photos of Great Haseley & Great Milton, Oxfordshire:
Buckinghamshire, England:
Buckinghamshire, England - Message Board:
Buckinghamshire Genealogical Society:
Buckinghamshire Surname List:
Genealogical Research in Australia:
Family Tree Websites in Australia:
Cyndi's List of Genealogical Sites (Australia):
Family History in Queensland, Australia:
Queensland Surname Forum:
Aust Family Research Links:
Genealogy Resources on the Internet:
Australian Genealogy at Lycos:
Australasian Genealogy:
Australian Genealogical Research Centre:
Genealogy Down Under:
Australian Family Tree Connections:
Mormons' Internet Genealogy Service:

Peter J. Nelms


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