Bert Leahy article Leahy family photo

Bert Leahy article

A photo of the Bert Leahy and an article on him. About Bert Leahy: Bert Leahy also used the alias Albert Neil so he could enlist in the Australian Army for WW1.As the son of a German immigrant, he w ... show more

A photo of the Bert Leahy and an article on him.

About Bert Leahy

Bert Leahy also used the alias Albert Neil so he could enlist in the Australian Army for WW1.As the son of a German immigrant, he would have been watched carefully when WW1 started as Germans in Australia were seen as threats and thousands were sent to internment camps until the end of the war. His identity as Hugo Ludolff was discovered and he was discharged from the Army. He changed his name to Bert Leahy (possibly as his step mothers surname was Leahy and then re-enlisted at Adelaide, stating there was no next of kin, only a friend, Mrs Cook. This Mrs Cook was Frances Cooke who married one of the Ludolff family members , so she was actually a relative not a friend. Perhaps once again , it was felt that to protect his true identity he couldn't have any next of kin listed with the Ludolff surname. It is a shame that his life was full of secrets. He married Lena Penney and they did not have any children together, but he did have a daughter in 1955 who was also kept secret and was a forced adoption . Her birth name was Jennifer Wilson.Her name was changed to Susan File by her adoptive parents. ...more about Bert Leahy

Susan Roberts This is a photo of Bert Leahy who was born around 1892 and fought in WW1. He was wounded and captured at Bullecourt and held as a POW. He returned to Australia and worked as a labourer and mostly a steeplejack. There are several articles on his work. He was in Census records as living with Eleanor Christina Leahy in Petersham, Sydney but I can't find marriage records or a birth record. It is possible he also used the name Albert Neil according to a newspaper report in 1934. I don't know of any other relatives but would like to contact them as I am directly related . He died in Sydney in 1962.
Apr 29 · Reply
Susan Roberts I have found Trove newspaper announcements of the death and funeral of his wife who was listed as 'Lena Jane Leahy' who died at their home in 72 New Canterbury Rd, Petersham.Perhaps 'Lena' is a nickname for Eleanor? Bert referred to himself as 'Herbert (Bert) Leahy' which is the first reference I have that his name was Herbert , with his preferred name as Bert in all other records including WW1 records and Census. I'm hoping to be able to eventually track down a birth certificate. He has listed his birthday as 26th May 1891 or 1892 but he was raised by another family so perhaps this explains the uncertainty. I've just ordered the death Certificate for his wife "Lena Leahy" (died 1949) to see where & when they were married and if there were any children from this marriage or to a previous marriage . His wife died 6 years before I was born so I don't know any other family names. It was interesting that he always recorded himself as single when receiving a war pension , but his death certificate does also confirm he was a widower.
Jun 02 · Reply
Susan Roberts Have been able to trace records indicating Bert Leahy was born Hugo Ludolff and changed his name to Albert Neil due to the trouble around WW1 with the persecution of German residents in Australia.He enlisted for the AIF (WW1)as Albert Neil (in Melbourne) and was discharged when they discovered his name was Hugo Ludolff (& he had broken from camp). His father , Jean Max Ludolff later married Martha Leahy in 1905 and Bert Leahy (aka Albert Neil ) decided to re-enlist for WW1 as Bert Leahy ( using his stepmothers name) in Adelaide. He fought in WW1 and was a POW. He used the true birth name of Hugo Ludolff when he married Lena Penney in 1934 in Sydney and then reverted back to the name Bert Leahy for the rest of his life. No wonder I had trouble tracing back.. I hope one day I'll meet some of my Ludolff relatives.
Jun 05 · Reply
Susan Roberts Bert Leahy was born as 'Hugo Ludolff' 26th May, 1891. His mother Alice Pearce (nee Sullivan) had been living with Jean Max Ludolff for a number of years while waiting for the laws to change so she could divorce her husband , James Alexander Pearce, on the grounds of desertion. She had married James Pearce in Oaklands, Tasmania in May, 1876 and seems to have given birth to 2 children a boy & a girl ...possibly named Mary Ann Catherine Alice Pearce born 12 Sept, 1878, Hobart, Tasmania. Once the law changed in 1892 she filed for divorce and this was granted 2nd March, 1893. I'm not sure if she legally married Jean Max Ludolff but he did give all her 3 children (including my father Hugo) his surname on their birth certificate. Alice and (Jean) Max Ludolff managed Hotels for a while and boarding houses around the Scarborough/Rockdale area near Botany Bay in Sydney before moving to Melbourne later..
Jul 02 · Reply
Susan Roberts I think the mother of Bert Leahy aka Albert Neil aka Hugo Ludolff , Alice Pearce nee Sullivan, had a child named Alexander Pearce born 23rd January, 1877 at Raty and Christened 21st May, 1877 at Georges Bay, Tasmania. If anyone knows of descendents of James and Alice Pearce or Jean Max Ludolff could they please add photos to this site or any information they feel comfortable sharing. Thanks.
Aug 07 · Reply
Susan Roberts I have found more information about Bert Leahy (Hugo Ludolff). His mother Alice Sullivan was born in Tasmania and I believe her parents were Thomas Sullivan and Ann Carton. Her parents were both convicts transported to Tasmania, Thomas Sullivan arrived in Tasmania on the ship "Gilbert Henderson" 12 November, 1845 and Ann Carton (Carten, Karten) arrived 9th May, 1850. They received permission to marry 3 Sept 1850 and married in Tasmania 18 Sept, 1850. She arrived on the "Earl Grey" and was originally a country servant from Wexford, Ireland. She burned down a shed. One of their children was Sarah Sullivan who married John Cummins 10th January, 1871, Hobart, Tasmania. Sarah Cummins (nee Sullivan) died 26th April,1900 aged 49 in Richmond, Victoria. I never thought I would have convict ancestors.
Sep 03 · Reply
Susan Roberts Anne Carton was recorded as working at the Ross Female Factory for convicts in Tasmania. She finished her sentence and was given a ticket of leave in 1856/7. Oatlands , where other descendants lived was not far from Ross (about 36 kilometres).
Sep 12 · Reply
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