Grace CLULEE's family, where are you?

Last weekend my partner and I toddled off to Rotorua for the weekend.

On the way, we stopped at Paeroa and did the circuit of many and varied antique stores. At 'Arkwrights Antiques', I happened upon a small Holy Communion book [scroll down for photos] that was inscribed to Grace CLULEE on the occasion of her confirmation on 15 April 1894 at St Paul's [cathedral], Dunedin from [Reverend] J W A Melville* [interestingly enough he performed the marriage ceremony 2 months later for well known NZ barrister Alfred Charles Hanlon and his wife].

A nice thing to happen also tonight after getting it out to photograph, I thumbed through carefully and found the page for Holy Communion and there was a tiny pressed flower - what a delight! I'd like to think that this was put there on the day she was given it, but of course cannot be sure of that.

Grace CLULEE's family, if you are out there I'd love to give you this wee token of her life if she is on your family tree. It would be lovely to know what happened to her.

A search of the indexes for historical births, deaths and marriages shows:
  • Grace CLULEE born to Jeannie Comming[sic] and Alfred CLULEE and registered 1876 [1].
  • Grace CLULEE wed Angustus [sic] Nixon SCOTT c1913 [2] . If this is my Grace then presuming she was 7 or 8 at first holy communion, she would have been born around 1886 and therefore approximately 27 if this was her marriage. This then would not be the Grace CLULEE whose birth I found in the indexes, unless it was a later communion and she was 17 or 18 and this scenario also is possible.
  • There is a death registered in 1947 [3] for a Grace SCOTT dying aged 73 [thus born circa 1874]. The years are out by a couple but this is not unusual as personal information received by registrars is often only provided by relatives and can be incorrect. In the end i've found in other cases, even purchased certificates are not 100% reliable.
Searching the National Library of New Zealand's Paperspast website produces:
  • an article from Otago Witness 22 February 1894 mentioning a Grace CLULEE being recommended by inspectors for appointment [Caversham school?]
  • an article from Otago Witness 17 June 1895 mentioning a Grace CLULEE passing her annual examinations for pupil teachers.
  • an article from Otago Witness 26 March 1896 mentioning a Grace CLULEE gaining a second pass class in freehand drawing as a student at the Dunedin School of Art and Design, the Science and Art department in connection with the School of Design at South Kensington [London].
  • an article from Otago Witness 14 January 1897 mentioning a Grace CLULEE passing her annual examinations for pupil teachers with second class merits. This mentions 'Caversham' and gives the clue she possibly was teaching there?
  • an article from Otago Witness 18 February 1897 mentioning a Grace CLULEE gaining a second class pass in elementary model drawing in the London Science and Art Department's examination held in Dunedin the previous year.
  • an article from Otago Witness 2 March 1899 on a Grace CLULEE gaining a partial pass in the Otago Teacher Examinations.
  • an article from Otago Witness 8 March 1900 on a Grace CLULEE gaining a Class D pass in the teacher examinations in the Otago district.
Interestingly enough I have come across this surname one other time. Many years back I was in Kumara cemetery on the West Coast of the South Island and there is a CLULEE buried there.

The pressed flower marking the Holy Communion page

These are the pages the book fell open at the most easily
Back cover

Alfred and Jeanie had other children, siblings for Grace:
George Frederick, birth registration 1878/5690
Frances, birth registration 1880/7419

UPDATE 30 March 2013:
Being a lovely day yesterday, I decided to do some cemetery photography at Purewa and came across quite by chance Grace's parents grave!
* Assistant at St Paul's pro-Cathedral 1893-1895 [4]

[1] NZ Department Internal affairs - Births, deaths and marriages index search website
registration 1876/10838

[2] NZ Department Internal affairs - Births, deaths and marriages index search website
registration number 1913/592

[3] NZ Department Internal affairs - Births, deaths and marriages index search website
registration number 1947/30567


  1. hi,
    I am almost certain this is one of my ancestors. Daughter of Alfred Clulee.
    I will look at the family tree and get back to you, try and give you more information about her. The family would love to have this Holy Communion book, and a small record of Grace's life.
    Evan Clulee

  2. That's fantastic Evan! I have emailed you.


  3. Very interesting! I'm a researcher and have been working on the Clulee family for a client. She is a descendant of the branch that ended up in South Africa. Alfred Clulee, George Frederick Clulee, and Rev. Charles Clulee were brothers from Birmingham, England. Alfred and George went to NZ and Charles went to South Africa. Ultimately George left NZ and ended up in Durban, SA. My client is the granddaughter of Rev. Charles Clulee, a slightly more distant connection to Grace.

  4. Thanks for that Kathy :-) it may well help someone else.

    I haven't heard back from the previous commentor, so i still have the little book here!


  5. hi again. I can't locate my copy of the Clulee family tree. Trying to contact our relative who wrote the family tree. Will let you know when i have done this.
    Do you still have the book?

  6. I was just thinking about you a few days back :-)
    Yes i still have problems there :-)



Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Christchurch post earthquake - insurance woes

The Kennedy ancestral hunt

1:12 scale Genealogists study - part 2