Arthur Sheens1

M, #186, b. 21 November 1874, d. 26 June 1959
FatherHenry Sheens1 b. 30 Nov 1844, d. 6 Jul 1921
MotherEmma Byrnes1 b. 25 Sep 1849, d. 26 Dec 1927
Relationship2nd great-uncle of Timothy George Sheens
Last Edited18 Feb 2015
Birth*21 November 1874 Castlereagh, NSW;
Name: Arthur Sheens
Sex of Child: Male
Date of Birth: 21st November 1874
Place of Birth: Castlereagh

Father: Henry Sheens
Occupation: Farmer
Birthplace: England
Age: 30

Date of Marriage: 1871
Place of Marriage: Castlereagh

Previous Issue: 2 Boys living

Mother: Emma formerly Byrnes
Birthplace: Castlereagh
Age: 24

Informant: Henry Sheens (his mark), father, Castlreagh
Witness: Lydia Lees, Mrs Byrnes1,2 
Baptism15 December 1874 Penrith Circuit, NSW;
son of Henry & Emma Sheens, Castlereagh
Minister A Swift, Methodist3 
Article*6 May 1899 "The Nepean Times", Penrith, NSW;
Before the P.M., Messrs A L Hough and J H Beacroft, J's.P.
William Richard Dunstan sued Henry William Nepean Parker for the support of the illigitimate [sic] child of his daughter, Ella Etheleen Dunstan
Mr T K Waldron appeared for plaintiff, and Mr O Bull for defendant.
William Richard Dunstan, sworn, deposed: I am a farmer residing on the Castlereagh Road; I know the defendant, he is the person referred to in the information, and resides at Castlereagh with his father, Henry Parker, a butcher; defendant has been working for his father during the last three months; defendant has been at my place many times in company with my daughter; my daughter was delivered of an illegitimate female child on 21st February last at Castlereagh; defendant was going with my daughter for several months both before and after May and June of last year; during May and June last year, he was with my daughter very often alone at my house, both before and after I went to bed; he used to come to my house to see her during that time; defendant and my daughter were alone in my front parlor; there are two front rooms in my house; I occupy the other one as a bedroom; there is a door leading from the parlor to the bedroom, there is no hall; defendant has been there late at night—I believe as late as 11 o'clock; I had a conversation with defendant on the Castlereagh Road, near my place, about August last; I believe I spoke first; I said to Parker, ' What do you mean to do about Ella ;' he said. ' I know nothing about her;' I said, 'If I'm not satisfied beforehand, I'll make it hot for you;' he said, 'How much do you want;' I said, ' I'll take £50 to settle it;' he said, 'It's a fortune;' and further, ' Will you take anything less ;' I said, ' No;' he said, ' I suppose I'll have to see you again;' that was the end of the conversation; I saw him again some time afterwards, about a fortnight afterwards either the latter end of August or the beginning of September; about that time he called one day with the butcher's cart; I went out to get some meat and the conversation started; I did'nt remember all that was said, but again told him I would make it hot for him; I don't remember whether he made any reply or not; later on some few weeks afterwards I had a third conversation, with him at my place; Parker rode to my place on a bicycle and asked to see me; I went down to him; he was about 20 yards from the house, he was on the road, I was on my own ground; his father was at my place that day; he said to me 'Have you said anything to my father about it?'; I said 'No'; he further said 'Will you take £25 down and my note of hand for the other £25; I said 'No, I might never get the other £25'; he said, 'I suppose I'll have to try and get it;' he then said 'Will you give me three months to pay it in;' I said 'No;' he said 'Will you give me one month;' I said 'Yes;' this was before the birth of the child; I laid the information, the signature is mine, and I believe it to be true; the female child referred to is the daughter of my daughter, Ella Etheleen Dunstan, and is in this district without means of support; since the birth of the child I have not spoken to defendant; he has not contributed towards the support of the child; I believe he is able to do so; the usual wage of a man of defendant's capability at his trade, I believe, is about £2 10s per week.
By the P.M.: I have seen him driving the butcher's cart serving meat; I have never seen him in his father's shop.
By Mr Bull; I have never seen defendant killing; I recognise the fact that he lives with his father; I can't say there would be any set off for board and lodging; he didn't tell me what he was receiving; I don't know whether he is receiving wages; he may be receiving board and lodging for services rendered; it was about August when I first spoke to defendant; my daughter told me of her condition a few days before my conversation with defendant; I believe it was sometime in the early part of August; when I first spoke to him he said he knew nothing of my daughter; I offered to take £50, and I considered I would have to keep the child; I offered to take the £50 to relieve him of further liability; on the last occasion some one may have heard a portion of the conversation; I can't say that I have anyone to give evidence to that effect; the room that defendant and my daughter used to sit in was adjoining my bedroom; at that time there were two other girls at home—one about 12 and another 14; they occupied a room at the back of my bedroom; there are no halls in the house; it is a four-roomed cottage without a hall; there has been other young men at my house; I will not swear there were other young man there in June last; a young man named Sheens has been paying some attention; he visited my house about July and August; he may have been there before; be appeared to go to see Ella; she was the oldest of the three girls at home; Sheens was rather anxious to marry Ella; he first expressed a desire to do so about the latter end of July or August; some little time before that an acquaintance had existed between them; I cannot swear there was an engagement in May or June; there was a place at Sheens' parents' place where the young people used to go for a dance, this was about a mile from my place off the main road; my daughter went there a few times, but not with my consent; I believe Sheen [sic] brought her home on one or two occasions; I did not see him I have no doubt he did bring her home I believe it was before the connection with Parker that Sheens brought my daughter home; Sheens came to my house about two months ago on business; Sheens is a laborer and is often at work in the farming line; I don't know that he has any particular prospects; I think Sheens ceased visiting the house in October last, but has been there on business since; the condition of my daughter was noticeable in October; Sheen [sic] did not repeat the offer to marry my daughter in July; he has never expressed a desire to marry my daughter afterwards; my daughter is living with me as an inmate of my house, and I am supporting her; she is nursing the child; I remember seeing Sheens down by the river side I believe about October, he had ceased visiting my house then; I had no conversation with him at all; my daughter was down there, several others were with her, two grown persons and one or two children, relatives of mine.
By the P.M: I never challenged defendant in a direct way with having in any way done anything wrong with any member of my family, he understood it; I never saw anything wrong between defendant and my daughter.
By Mr Waldron: There is nothing between my daughter and Sheens to my knowledge; a fair wage for Sheens would be about 30s a week; I generally go to bed about 9 o'clock, sometimes later, I rise early; I am not a very heavy sleeper; I can't say that Parker ever brought my daughter home from the dances.
By the P.M.: I have been at home every night as far as I can remember; I left them in the room when I went to bed and heard them moving about; I have also heard Parker leave the house.
Ella Etheleen Dunstan, sworn, deposed: I am the daughter of W R Dunstan and reside on the Castlereagh-road; I am 17 years of age and was delivered of a female child on the 21st February of this year, at Castlereagh; William Henry Parker is the father ; I first know defendant about two years ago, about a fortnight after we went to Castlereagh; I was keeping company with him when the child was conceived in May or June last year; [witness fully detailed the intimacy commencing about 12 months before May or June and during those two months]; it was about a month after that I spoke to Parker on our own verandah; I said, 'I'm in a certain condition,' and he said 'You had better see Dr Pym'; defendant drove me to see Dr Pym about two months after the conversation; he called at our place and drove me to my sister's, and afterwards drove to the doctor's, picking up Madeline Haynes at the school corner, and she accompanied me; Madeline Haynes and I went in, Parker remained in the buggy; Parker gave me £2 to pay the doctor in front of Madeline Haynes; I paid the doctor 7s 6d and gave Parker back the change as soon as I came out; Madeline Haynes was there then; I told him Dr Pym said it was no use I was in a certain condition; he said, 'Well I suppose it can't be helped,' defendant is a butcher, he works with his father; I dont know what wages he gets; I have seen him with money on other occasions, besides when he gave me £2, he never appeared to be short of money.
By the P.M: He has never told me what his position is with his father.
The Court then adjourned for one hour.
On resuming, Mr Bull said since the Court adjourned he had had an opportunity of consulting with his client and the party on the other side. He came to the conclusion that the evidence given so far was so strong and was certainly corroborative, that he wished to come to a settlement. He had made a certain offer, but Mr Waldron wanted 50 per cent more than he offered. He now wished to, call evidence to show defendant's position. He offered 5s a week.
Mr Waldron said he also wished to call one witness.
The following evidence was then taken :—
Arthur Sheens, sworn, deposed: I am a laborer residing at Castlereagh; I know defendant, he is a butcher by trade working for his father; he is a first class slaughterman, I have seen him kill at home with his father at the slaughter-house; I can kill a sheep, I know he can kill a sheep by the time he takes, I have timed it with a watch—he took six minutes; a man of Parker's capabilities would be worth £2 a week.
By Mr Bull: I was getting £1 a week on a station; I don't know of any in this district getting £2 a week for similar work.
By Mr Waldron: I have seen defendant spending money; he has told me he had £25; that was on 24th August last.
Henry Parker, examined by Mr Bull, stated: I am the father of defendant, carrying butchering business at Castlereagh; I kill about three bullocks and 10 or 15 sheep; my son has been employed by me, and a younger and older son as well; my son has no means except what I supply him with; he has no stated sum from me; he boards with me, and I clothe him and give him pocket money; I could not afford to pay anyone 50s a week in my business —not 10s; I am certain be has no money saved, he never had.
By Mr Waldron: Defendant, my son, is 20 next November; it is worth £1, a week to keep defendant clothed, and besides that I find him in pocket money.
By the P. M.: He has no interest in the business.
By Mr Waldron. As a butcher he would not get more than 10s a week; he is not a good butcher.
By the P.M.: He could never kill a sheep in six minutes; he kills and dresses both cattle and sheep, and delivers the meat; he collects the money sometimes.
Defendant was ordered to pay 5s a week for 12 months, costs of court 8s, witnesses' costs, professional costs £2 2s—to be paid to Sergeant Thorndike.;Principal=Ella Etheline Dunstan4 
Marriage*13 December 1900 55 Pitt Street, Redfern, NSW;
Groom: Arthur Sheens
Status: Bachelor
Place of Birth: Penrith NSW
Occupation: Labourer
Age: 26
Usual Residence: Penrith
Father: Henry Sheens
Occupation: Farmer
Mother: Emma Burns

Bride: Madge Ella Etheline Dunstan
Status: Spinster
Place of Birth: Windsor NSW
Occupation: Private Life
Age: 19
Usual Residence: Penrith
Father: William Richard Dunstan
Occupation: Farmer
Mother: Laura Australia Holland

Date of Marriage: 13 Dec 1900
Place of Marriage: 55 Pitt Street, Redfern NSW
Religion: Wesleyan
Witnesses: Mary Colwell, Laura Australia Dunstan
Minister: Frederick Colwell

Note: The Consent of William Richard Dunstan being the Father of the Bride, was given in writing to the marriage of Ella Etheline Dunstan with Arthur Sheens the said Ella Etheline Dunstan being under the age of twenty-one years.;Bride=Ella Etheline Dunstan5 
Birth of Son1901 Penrith, NSW;Principal=Arthur Sheens6 
Birth of Son25 February 1904 Penrith, NSW;Principal=Henry Dunstan Sheens7 
Birth of Son4 July 1906 Penrith, NSW;Principal=Hilton Sheens8 
Birth of Son29 May 1910 Penrith, NSW;Principal=Walter Edward Sheens9,10 
Birth of Son19 November 1918 Emu Plains, NSW;Principal=Clarence Roy Sheens11 
Death of Son3 July 1920 Penrith, NSW;Principal=Arthur Sheens12,13 
Article*21 May 1921 "The Nepean Times", Penrith, NSW;
Emu Plains
Arthur Sheens, who has been incapacitated with rheumatism for some time, is, unfortunately, not showing any improvement. He has been strongly re commended to try a course of treatment at Moree Bore Water Baths, the curative properties of which have a great reputation in complaints of this character. It is possible he will endeavor to arrange to go to Moree for a month or so in the near future.14 
Death of Father6 July 1921 Castlereagh, NSW;
Name: Henry Sheens
Date of Death: 6 Jul 1921
Place of Death: Castlereagh, Municipality of Castlereagh NSW
Occupation: Farmer
Sex: Male
Age: 76
Conjugal Status:
Place of Birth: Louth, Lincolnshire England
Time in Aust Colonies: About 72 years in NSW

Father: Samuel Sheens
Occupation: Shipwright
Mother: Jemima Lingard

Place of Marriage: Castlereagh NSW
Age at Marriage: 25
Name of Spouse: Emma Byrnes
Children of Marriage: George 49, Arthur 47, Peter 45, John 43, Isabel M 39, Eliza J 37, Allan 35, James 33, Alfred 31, Robert 25 living; 2 males, 1 female deceased
Informant: James Sheens, son, Castlereagh

Cause of Death: 1. Arterio Sclerosis 2. Chronic Parenchymatous Nephritis
Length of Illness: 2. 12 months
Medical Attendant: F C Higgins
Date last seen: 28 Jun 1921

Date of Burial: 7 Jul 1921
Place of Burial: Methodist Cemetery Castlereagh
Minister & Religion: S C Roberts, Methodist
Undertaker: John Price and Son
Witnesses: A E Elkington, George Clarke;Principal=Henry Sheens15 
Birth of Son23 November 1923 Emu Plains, NSW;Principal=Ronald Kenneth Sheens16 
Death of Mother26 December 1927 Castlereagh, NSW;
Name: Emma Sheens
Date of Death: 26th December 1927
Place of Death: Castlreagh Municipality
Age: 77
Conjugal Status:
Place of Birth: Penrith NSW
Time in Aust Colonies:

Father: Samuel Byrnes
Occupation: Carrier
Mother: Eliza Lewis

Place of Marriage: Castlereagh NSW
Age at Marriage: 19
Name of Spouse: Henry Sheens
Children of Marriage: George 56, Arthur 53, Peter 51, Isabella M 45, Eliza J 42, Allan 41, James 39, Alfred 37, Robert 32 living; 3 males and 1 female deceased
Informant: James Sheens, son, Castlereagh

Cause of Death: Abdominal neoplasm
Length of Illness:
Medical Attendant: F C Higgins
Date Last Seen: 23rd December 1927

Date of Burial: 27th December 1927
Place of Burial: Methodist Cemetery Castlereagh
Minister & Religion: W J Stuart-Wright, Methodist
Undertaker: J Price & Son
Witnesses: W E Lance, J Grant

Registered: 28th December 1927 Penrith;Principal=Emma Byrnes17 
Death of Son28 May 1947 Enfield, NSW;
SHEENS.Clarence Roy.-May 28, 1947 (result of accident), beloved husband of Rita Emily Sheens, of Lemongrove Road, Penrith, and dear father of Beverley, Ken, Margaret, and Elaine, aged 28 years.;Principal=Clarence Roy Sheens18,19 
Death*26 June 1959 Nepean District Hospital, Penrith, NSW;
SHEENS, Arthur.-June 26, 1959, at Nepean District Hospital, of Jamison Street, Emu Plains, dearly beloved husband of Ella Sheens and loving father of Hilton, Henry, Pat and Ron, and of Arthur and Roy (both deceased), aged 84 years.20 
Obituary*16 July 1959 "The Nepean Times", Penrith, NSW;
Arthur Sheens was born at Castlereagh 84 years ago. He was the son of Henry and Emma Sheens (daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Sam Burns) who had lived at Castlereagh for many years before Arthur was born. Sam and George, elder brothers, were born at the old Castlereagh home.
Arthur went to Castlereagh School, and in his early youth was farming. Later he worked for Mr. Bob Hatley.
Fifty-nine years ago he married Ella Dunstan, at the Redfern Methodist Church, Rev. Colwell performing the ceremony. They came to Penrith to live after their marriage, in a house in North Street, near the overhead bridge. They moved to Emu Plains, where they have lived for the last 50 years.
During that period Mr. and Mrs. Sheens made many friends. All the people of the district knew them. This was shown by the large number who attended the funeral which took place to the Emu Plains cemetery. He was buried after a service conducted at the funeral parlours in Station Street.
Left to mourn their loss are his widow, Mrs. E. Sheens, Vera (at home), Hilton (Emu Plains), Harry (Croydon). Walter (Emu Plains), Ron (Gladesville); two other sons predeceased their father, they were Arthur and Roy.21 


Ella Etheline Dunstan b. 7 Sep 1881, d. 22 Jul 1970


  1. [S41] NSW Wesleyan Baptism Registers, 1788-1855 ",17730/1874 Arthur Sheens."
  2. [S111] NSW Birth Certificate, 17730/1874 Arthur Sheens.
  3. [S199] NSW Penrith Methodist Baptism Registers, 1860-1964 ",17730/1874 Arthur Sheens."
  4. [S154] Australian Newspapers,, The Nepean Times, Saturday, May 6, 1899.
  5. [S108] NSW Marriage Certificate, 9538/1900 Arthur Sheens & Ella E Dunstan.
  6. [S13] NSW Birth Index, 25513/1901 Arthur Sheens.
  7. [S199] NSW Penrith Methodist Baptism Registers, 1860-1964 ",27740/1906 Henry D Sheens."
  8. [S199] NSW Penrith Methodist Baptism Registers, 1860-1964 ",15539/1904 Hilton Sheens."
  9. [S13] NSW Birth Index, 30555/1910 Walter E Sheens.
  10. [S36] Maria Quigley Sheens - Our Family Tree.
  11. [S199] NSW Penrith Methodist Baptism Registers, 1860-1964 ",45888/1918 Clarence R Sheens."
  12. [S11] NSW Death Index, 12431/1920 Arthur Sheens.
  13. [S377] NSW Will Books, 1800-1952, online, Arthur Sheens 1920.
  14. [S154] Australian Newspapers,, The Nepean Times, Saturday, May 21, 1921.
  15. [S107] NSW Death Transcript (Marilyn Rowan), 14648/1921 Henry Sheens.
  16. [S199] NSW Penrith Methodist Baptism Registers, 1860-1964 ",Ronald Kenneth Sheens."
  17. [S106] NSW Death Certificate, 22784/1927 Emma Sheens.
  18. [S11] NSW Death Index, 12969/1947 Clarence Roy Sheens.
  19. [S154] Australian Newspapers,, The Sydney Morning Herald, Friday 30 May 1947.
  20. [S201] The Daily Telegraph, Saturday, June 27, 1959.
  21. [S154] Australian Newspapers,, The Nepean Times, Thursday, July 16, 1959.
  22. [S13] NSW Birth Index, 27740/1906 Henry D Sheens.
  23. [S13] NSW Birth Index, 15539/1904 Hilton Sheens.
  24. [S13] NSW Birth Index, 45888/1918 Clarence R Sheens.