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Doris Elizabeth REEVES

Doris Elizabeth REEVES

Female 1902 - 2001  (98 years)

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  • Name Doris Elizabeth REEVES 
    Born 3 Oct 1902  New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Registration No. 1901/13738
    Gender Female 
    Address 1993 
    5-20 Weymouth Road, Manurewa, N.Z 
    Died 2001  New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Registration No. 1902/15215
    • Letter written by Doris Reeves to Stan and Sheila Hemming after hearing of the deaths of Len Billson and Ivy Billson nee Hemming. Stan and Sheila had found her address among Len's papers and wrote to her.

      There are many errors in her early history which I have since rectified. Everything before Anne married Sidney Henry Billson is wrong. I have still to prove or otherwise the detail about Chatsworth and Paxton. (She may have confused Chatsworth with Chiswick House.)
      Corin. I don't know when Doris died. (now known)
      I wrote a letter to her address in NZ but had no reply.


      5-20 Weymouth Rd. Manurewa

      Dear Stan & Sheila

      Many thanks for your letter received on Xmas Eve. Very kind of you to write me all details. I somehow had a feeling that Len and Ivy were not with us but I sent the Calendar in case they could use it, and I decided that I would write after Xmas to the Matron of the home and ask for news. I also have an address in Kent for Len's daughter and one in L.A for Fred but they are very old by now.
      As Len's second cousin I would like to thank you both for the care you gave them. When in England last (1979) I stayed a few happy days with them and some good snaps taken in the garden. Among Len's papers you may have come across one giving the family tree with our relationship. It is very strange how some happenings in life cause families to come together. I'll try to make it clear as to how we're related.
      Back in the early 1800's in Derbyshire (I think) was a Baron Hewart and his wife Anne who had an only daughter, also named Anne who married a London Lawyer named Henry George Whittaker and they had a daughter named Anne who married a Sydney Billson of either Jersey or Guernsey, Channel Islands. His parents ran ships to England and France. Sydney B had T.B and the treatment in those days was to take in as much sea air as possible so he used to take trips on the boats and it happened on one that an awful storm arose and for 5 days they were all soaked resulting in Sydney dying, leaving Anne and a 1 year old baby. Anne wished to return to her parents but the Billson parents demanded that they keep young Henry Sydney to bring up and educate but Anne (who was very stubborn) somehow got back to England. What happened in the intervening seven years I've never heard, but when H.S Billson was 8 he and Anne came to Chatsworth; she as "sewing maid" for the Duchess of Devonshire and 8 years later she married my Grandfather, William Reeves who had been apprenticed as a gardener to the Duke at the age of 13. (By the way I'm committing the Family History on to tapes. As I'm now 91, I must get on with it before I forget it all). Now 8 years later when the Great Exhibition of 1851 was started the Duke gave the Government the loan of his Head Gardener, William Paxton and a number of gardeners. After the Exhibition Paxton was knighted and started his own business and my Grandfather worked with him for some years. Then there was a depression and he went back to Chatsworth. (I have my father's Birth Certificate, he was born at Chiswick and his father's occupation was given at that date, as Gentleman's Gardener. The date was Feb.25th 1865).
      William and Anne Reeves had 5 children, Frank, Harriet, Amy, Horace and Effie and Henry George Billson was their half-brother. H.G.B married Emily Butler and they had a large family. Their eldest son was Edmund and Len was his son hence my 2nd cousin. I've met Len's daughter and his son Fred. Len's Cousin Vera Brown of Seaton, Devon, a widow wrote to me at Xmas and said she had not heard from her for several years. She is crippled with arthritis and several other complaints so I've written to her and told her the news. Also, a cousin of Len's lives here in Auck (land). He is Philip? Son of Horace Billson and he and Olive came to N.Z some years ago as his daughter lives in Tauranga. They live in very good Pensioner Flats at Blockhouse Bay on the opposite side of Auckland to me. My brother Frank and I visit them every Xmas and we ring & (-----) the years so I've told them your news. Henry S and Emily's eldest daughter, Beatrice (Len's Aunt) came to NZ in 1926 aged 50 and she stayed here in a very good job and lived to be 2 months off 90 when she died. I was not in NZ so Frank attended to her burial etc. She is buried in the same grave as her G-Mother and mine, Anne Reeves at our Purewa Cemetery in Remuera. Ann Reeves died Jan 21st 1901 aged 79. She had every tooth as sound as a bell and had never had a headache. My mother lived with William and Anne for the 1st year of her married life and said she was very hard on anyone who was sick as she claimed she had never felt a pain of any kind, even though she had had 6 children. Her family called her the last of the (Barans?). Here I am waffling on and you may not be interested in the queer quirks which bring together families who live at each end of the earth. By the way I'm "Miss" an unclaimed treasure and have had a wonderful life of working at all sorts of unusual jobs having trained as a Nurse. Went to England for the Coronation and stayed 3 years. Went again in 1959 for 8 years and again in 1979 for 3 months holiday. Retired 20 years ago from a School Matronship in Australia. I would have answered your letter sooner but I stayed with my Sister in Law over Xmas and New Year.
      I worked at the Choirboys School at Windsor Castle for the Year 1961 then toured Canada and the U.S.A in a Motorised Caravan with 2 Australian girls. I do hope you will get your wish to visit N.Z but don't be too long as I may not be here to greet you. I have arthritis but otherwise have good general health. Now I must get this into the post.
      With Best of Wishes for a happy 1993,

      Yours very Sincerely

      Doris Reeves
    Person ID I000072  Mills/Rushton Family History
    Last Modified 12 Aug 2010 

    Father Frank William REEVES,   b. 25 Feb 1865, Chiswick Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1938, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 72 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Elizabeth Sarah TRIMBLE,   b. 1879, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1949, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 70 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Married 1901  New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F000030  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart