Last week my ancestor was Mary Ann Jones. This week, my ancestor is her son Jacob Thomas Alexander Mulder (known as Thomas).
The first information I had on Thomas came from the birth, death and marriage indexes in Victoria, Australia. From information from my mother in law, I went looking to find information on the Mulder family, and found that there weren’t many Mulders that had come to Victoria, so I jotted down details for all the entries that I found.
Amongst these entries were the birth entries for children of Thomas Mulder and Louisa House. Amongst these children was Patrick John Theodore Mulder, who my mother in law had told me was her mother’s father.
Patrick John Theodore Mulder (also known as John Theodore) was born in 1861 in Ballarat. Thomas and Louisa had the following other children, who were also born in the Ballarat area:
- Georgina born 1856 at Ballarat
- Thomas born 1857 at Ballarat
- Margaret born 1859 at Ballarat East
The death indexes showed the death entry for a Thomas Mulder in 1870 in Victoria, age 52, and Louisa Mulder in 1878. Their daughter Margaret died the same year she was born, and there was another child, Mary Ann, who died in 1864, aged 9 years.
The Post Office Directories showed that in 1868 Thomas was a publican at Ballarat, and listed his age as 40 years old. He was still listed on the directories until 1872, and then in 1875 there was an entry for Louisa Mulder, hotel keeper, at Ballarat East.
The next thing I obtained was Patrick John Theodore Mulder’s birth certificate. This certificate listed his father as Thomas Mulder, a storekeeper at Ballaarat East. Thomas was 40 years old, and born in Amsterdam. He married Louisa House in October 1850 in Stepney, London. The certificate showed that Thomas and Louisa had four living children and one deceased.
I later obtained Thomas’ death certificate, which showed he died 24 December 1870 at Ballaarat East. He was a storekeeper, aged 52 years. His parents were listed as unknown. The informant at his death was his wife Louisa. His children were listed as:
- Louisa 17 yrs
- Mary Ann dead
- Georgina 15 yrs
- Thomas 13 yrs
- Lillla dead
- John 9 yrs
In the entries I had taken down for the Mulder from the birth, death and marriage indexes, there had been an entry for a Louisa Mulder who was married in 1870, and her birthplace was listed as Adelaide. I therefore decided to try the South Australian birth indexes, to see if this was Thomas and Louisa’s daughter. The South Australian indexes confirmed that she was – Louisa born 5 July 1852 at Adelaide, parents Thomas Mulder and Louisa House.
I now knew that prior to arriving in Victoria, Thomas and Louisa had lived for a short time in Adelaide.
Since Patrick John Theodore Mulder’s birth certificate showed that his parents had been born in October 1850 in Stepney, London, I went looking for a marriage entry. The only entries I found was an entry on the 1851 England Census for a Thomas Mulder, born about 1821 in Holland, with wife Maria at Bethnal Green, Middlesex, and the marriage of Jacob Thomas Alexander Mulder to Maria Clarkson on 27 July 1841 at St Anne, Limehouse. His father was John Derk Mulder.
On the death indexes in Victoria, there were entries for a John Theodore Mulder and a William Joseph Mulder, who both had their parents listed as John Dirk Mulder and Mary Ann Jones. This Jacob Thomas Alexander Mulder would therefore have been their brother. But was my Thomas the same person?
The next thing to do was to search for a Thomas Mulder born about 1818 in Amsterdam. The Netherlands, Select Births and Baptisms, 1564-1910 has an entry for Jacob Thomas Alexander Mulder born 27 November 1818 at Amsterdam. His parents were Jan Dirk Mulder and Marij Ann Jones.
William Joseph Mulder had also settled at Ballarat, and John Theodore Mulder had settled at Geelong (where their mother also died). There was also a similarity of names between Thomas’ son, and his brother. Ob the 1851 census, he was using the name Thomas, and the baptism entry matched his age and birthplace from his death certificate.
I recently came across the London, England, Selected Poor Law Removal and Settlement Records, 1828-1930, which have a number of entries for Maria Mulder, at Bethnal Green (where Thomas and Maria were living in the 1851 census), showing that her husband Thomas (the marriage details match the marriage of Jacob Thomas Alexander Mulder and Maria Clarkson) was absent.
All the information together does indicate that this is the same person, and that Thomas deserted his wife Maria, and came to Australia with Louisa House, and that Thomas and Louisa never actually married.