Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Smythe, stalled

I have recently found out that Smythe's father may not have been a Smith at all. Family rumor has it that his father was from a famous Tea Merchant family. Another branch of the family claims that Smythe's father Edward was a books seller on Paternoster Row and that the grandfather was in wine - in Ludgate Hill near St Pauls. There was indeed such a man, George Smith, right between F. and R. Sparrow's Tea Houses. George Smith sold his wine business and went into Shawl's "Graham and Smith's India Shawl" Warehouse to be specific.

So where does that leave me with Mr. Robert Sparrow Smythe, theatre man? Did his select the name Sparrow to honor his father? He must have. How am I ever going to find out what went on. Did Edward Smith marry Eliza? Family lore says they were not married. Perhaps, Smythe's oldest brother, Edward Smith, the man who died in South Australia was the actual Smith and the rest were, 'Sparrows." By the way, I am now THE MAN to go to for anything to do with the Sparrow Tea Family.

This first part of Smythe's biography is so lean and so lacking real foundations it bothers me.

Oh, and New Zealand have now instituted gay marriage. Australia, hang you head in shame.

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