2nd Edition of The Cossticks Available Now

The Cossticks 1700-1900 2nd Edition available now

The 2nd Edition of The Cossticks is now available for purchase directly from the printers. Soft and hardcovers are available. Click here or preview the book with the viewer at the right. Enlarge the preview to full screen to enable you to read the text of the Introduction.

Further details and projects can be found on the Historia Incognita web page.

00. Introduction

Preface to the Web Edition (revised 26 December 2007)

This web version of The Cossticks is based upon a family history I had been researching since the mid 1970s and finally published privately in 1999.

Like any family history this story is not, and never will be, finished. I would however ask the visitor to this site to help me make it more complete by adding their comments and emailing extra information, and I thank those who have already provided feedback and contributions.

The published family history has extensive footnotes and source notes that are not included here. On some pages the footnotes were almost as extensive as the information contained in the main narrative.

While I have listed sources of my information in the Bibliography at the end, should the reader seek clarification of any details or the sources of information please do not hesitate to contact me. I would be happy to share additional information with the enquirer.

A comprehensive family-tree containing several thousand names was also included in the original publication. An abbreviated Family Tree Chart is included here. Details are available upon request.

This story was originally written to trace the origins of the Cosstick family in Australia. Most Cosstick descendants in this country were aware that six brothers of the Cosstick family came to Victoria during the 1850s, and that one of them, Sam, became a somewhat legendary cricketer. But most people were not aware that there were at least another seven brothers and sisters in that family. One sister, Mary, went to New South Wales. Another branch of the family, descended from the earlier ancestor, Thomas Coulstock, came to Sydney during the early 1900s. Another branch went to Canada and the United States. Some of the Australian Cossticks also went to Canada and others to New Zealand.

Nearly one hundred and fifty years later the Cosstick descendants number in the thousands. That is hardly surprising when we consider the size of some of the early families - ten, twelve, even fifteen children were common.

This narrative makes no attempt to tell the story of all of the descendants. That would be an impossible task. The main emphasis has been upon the six brothers and extending in the best way that I could backwards and forwards from the 1850s. In some cases, as with my own line of descent, I was able to find a substantial amount of information, and that is included for the benefit of those readers related to that line.

One family is inevitably related to many others and I have decided to include brief excursions into the stories of other families which were related to the Cossticks - the Henderson, Martin, Matthews, and Reeves families for example. The Hamilton family, connected to the Cossticks through marriages to John and William Cosstick in the early 1860s, have had their story told in my previous Family Chronicles volume, The Hamiltons 1762-1862, a version of which is linked to this web site.

The story of the Cossticks in Australia is inseparably linked to the story of the town of Amherst. It once had a population of forty thousand. Today the visitor would be lucky to find a dozen people living there. I have therefore included a substantial chapter on the development of that town and the events of the 1850s and 1860s. Those who have a greater interest in the history of the town might like to refer to my Master of Education Thesis from 1986, The History of Education in the Amherst and Talbot Districts 1836-1862.

There have been many who have helped along the way. They are listed in footnotes and in the acknowledgements. I thank them all.

I am adding photographs, maps and other graphic material to this web site. There is a page of unidentified photographs also included - should you recognise any of the people in the Photo Gallery please let me know who they are.

Should the reader discover, as you will, errors or omissions, I urge you to let me know so that the next edition might put the record straight.

Douglas Wilkie
December 2007


normawebb said...

Have enjoyed reading this article on The Cosstick Family. We are related to Mary Cosstick who married Charles Webb in London and came to Australia in the 1850's.
We would like to contact the writer if possible to supply more facts on this line.
Norma and Bill Webb, Sydney NSW

Penny Cassie (Cosstick) Kempsey NSW said...

Thank you so much for compiling so much information and making it available to everyone.

I am still working out where our branches of the tree link up but as I have no great information of my own I find it all very fascinating.

Thank you for contacting me.

Douglas Wilkie said...

Thanks Penny. The last two generations of the Cosstick descendant charts that are not included on the web site indicate that you would be descended from John Cosstick (#13 b.1794) and Hannah Best through their son Edward (#30 b.1820), his son Charles (#77 b.1866), his son Charles Edward Cosstick (#195 b.1889) who came to Australia in 1912, then Ronald William Cosstick (b.1913) and Ronald Charles Cosstick (b.1944). I am descended through John Cosstick's brother Samuel (#12 b.1792).

jeanseaford said...

Hi there,
Found your web page by pure chance, if there is such a thing whilst looking for a friends address in Alfriston. I'm part of the family still in Seaford.
My great great grandfather was Edward Cosstick(28) and my great grandfather William(72)Edward was my grandfather. He was a warm generous man who read to us every night when we were young . He had two children Edward, and my mother Marjorie. I have a copy of an entry copied from the family bible with details of William and Marianne (as we called her) and their children . William died March 17th 1927 according to this record. In the record of Edward(28) you say that Marianne was Emily's daughter, but I think she was William's. She was living with her grandparents as William had lost Marianne her mother March 16th 1877.
Your work is fascinating as I knew little about my family before 1881 census and family gossip of course. Lots more details of younger generation if you are interested and a few sepia pictures, Best wishes Jean Cash.

PS Can you take me back further than g-g grandfather Edward?

Douglas W said...

Hello Jean,
If you follow the numbers back you will see that Edward (28) was the son of John Cosstick (11) b.1794 and Hannah Best b.1798. John in turn was the son of Thomas Cosstick (5) b.1757 and Mary Green b.1768. Thomas in turn was the son of Samuel Coulstick (3) b.1728 and Elizabeth Collingham b.1727. Samuel's father was also Samuel Cousltick (2) b.1694 and mother was Ann Holman.

Thanks for your comment about Mary Anne born 1873. You could well be correct. Rosie Ansell also provided some of these details and I will pass on your comments. If you can send an email with your additional information I will be happy to include it.

Vicky Cosstick said...

So fascinated to find this site. My father Frederick William Cosstick was born in Seaford, the 4th and youngest child of (184) Richard Cosstick, who married Rose Sutcliffe. My father died 28 Dec 2007 & I am currently writing up the history of his childhood in Seaford that we found, written in 1959. I will send a copy!
Vicky Cosstick

de Paula Lopes said...

Hello My name direct ancestor is Henry Poles Copestake Harpur; born 28 april 1869 York Doncaster, General Draper, died after 1898.
He married 17 aug 1897 Kent Surrey with Anne Elizabeth Parks; born 17 dec 1867 Hoxton New Town Middlesex, died after 1898.
The father of Henry Poles Copestake Harpur was James Copestick Harpur; born about 1833, Commercial Traveller, died 14 juni 1878 Doncaster York.
He married 14 dec 1865 Wath upon Dearne Roterham York with Elizabeth Poles; born 1 aug 1842 Wentworth Wath Rotherham York, baptised Wentworth Wath Rotherham York, died about 1917 romley Kent.
The father of James Copestick Harpur was James Harpur. I am curious if his mother was a Copestick/Copestake? I hope you might help me with this leniage of my family tree. Kind regards from The Netherlands

Douglas W said...

Thank you for your comment. Unfortunately I have not done any further research into the Copestick connections. Maybe a search through Ancestry will bring results.

Amanda Cosstick said...
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Amanda Cosstick said...
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Jen Harding said...

I have enjoyed reading this article about the Cossticks, and only wish I'd found it sooner! I have done a lot of work on the Cosstick line as I am descendant of Louisa Charlotte Harding nee' Cosstick. Looking at your photographs, I was wondering if picture number2 of the young lady is Charlotte Howell? As you know Louisa's Mother. I have a picture of Charlotte dated 1914, and I can see the resemblance. Would you like to have a copy? And also a picture of Louisa for your records. If you point me in the right direction to obtain your email address I will send them to you.

Thank you for the lovely insight!
Jennifer Harding

Anonymous said...

Do you know that Margaret Emily Mace's (Maiden name: Cosstick)granddaughter is still alive? Margaret Emily Cosstick married Mark Thomas Mace and had a daughter Charlotte Emily. Charlotte Emily married George Henry Townsend and had a daughter Joan Charlotte (now Davies). She will be 90 years of age next year. She is my mother.

M Davies