Hayhoe, Whatley, Davidson & Ross Families
of  Norfolk, Scotland,
Tasmania & Western Victoria

modified 26 Nov 2021

If you can fill any gaps please email us.
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Hayhoe in Wikipedia
Heyhoe in Wikipedia
Ross in Wikipedia

In the 1837 James Hayhoe & wife Susan (Whatley)  move from Norfolk, England to Tasmania.
Family split in 1852 when Susan, takes younger children to Victoria.
Esther Ross, milkmaid, emigrates to Australia, marries Ross Davidson, a conditional exile
Robert Buck Hayhoe, wheelwright, Penshurst publican, thrown from horse.
Much assistance from Thomas Hellwege

Little is known of the early Hayhoe / Heyhoe family of Norfolk. The International Genealogical Index (IGI) shows about 400 hundred marriages and christenings the England during the 1700's and 1800's. The family trees have been deduced from the IGI entries. It should be safe to assume that the Hayhoe entries for North Elmham are all of the same family. We can be confident about the marriage of James Hayhoe to Mary Buck as the maiden name carried on through the next few generations. We can safely assume the family were farm workers as were more than half the population in those days.

The spelling seems to have changed from generation to generation.  Hayhow is another spelling.

James Buck Hayhoe & Susan Whatley

James Buck Hayhoe, Susan Whatley and two children arrived in Launceston, Tasmania aboard the Derwent in February 1837. They had married in Colkirk, Norfolk in 1831. The reason for the move is unclear. I assume James and Susan were assisted immigrants; having their fare paid in return for several years work on their sponsor's property. Research has failed to find much detail. Five more children were born in Evandale, near Launceston. Later the family moved to Cataract Hill closer to Launceston where Susan kept a milkwalk (?).

James Hayhoe is mentioned in a newspaper article from Launceston dated Aug 1840. He participated in a ploughing contest. Research Trove for details.

In about 1852 Susan and the unmarried children left Tasmania and moved to the Western District of Victoria.

James remained in Tasmania and died in 1871 aged 65.

Their children..

Mary Hayhoe (aged 16 years) married John Russell in Launceston in 1849. He had been convicted in Limerick, Ireland in 1841 for an "an assault on a habitation". He was transported in 1842 aboard the Prince Regent for a seven year term. They came to Western Victoria soon after as their first child was born in 1851 in Tower Hill.

An extract of an email from Adam Russell, Nov 2010, ...
I am a descendant of John Russell and Mary Hayhoe.
I thought that I woud just write and let you know what I have discovered recently, which may fill some gaps:
John Russell died in 1884 in Winslow (just outside of Warrnambool, Victoria).  He must have been a very talented and industrious man. Despite his very humble origins, at the time of his death he was as a farmer of considerable means, leaving an estate of 10,000 pounds (see see attached testament and probate documents).
I have also recently found an article relating to Susan Hayhoe (nee Whatley). She was called as a witness in 1863 for a case relating to cruelty to a 12 year old boy, who was living next door to her in Warrnambool - she was probably occupying one of the houses owned by John Russell in Lava street - I think that four such dwellings are mentioned in his will. This article makes interesting reading, and something of our ancestor's character can be gleaned from how she expresses herself, reported verbatim in this court report (see attached).
Also, one of John Russell and Mary Hayhoe's sons, James Russell, was trying to divorce his wife for adultery in 1897 - this was known as the "Warrnambool Divorce Case," and makes for some more very interesting reading - the judged declared that adultery had certainly occurred, but not with the named party - the petition was dismissed !! (see attached).
I have also (perhaps) solved the mystery concerning James Buck Hayhoe, senior. I believe that he was a tenant farmer in Launceston in 1867 (see attached advertisement).
Kind regards, Adam.

William Hayhoe married Agnes Lee in Woodford, Western Victoria in 1862

Elizabeth Hayhoe (about 16 years) married Thomas Hilder in Launceston in 1853. Thomas, born in Suffolk,  had arrived in 1842 as a farm servant. The young couple left by schooner for Emu Bay (now Burnie) several days after the wedding and went on to be pioneer settlers of that part of Northern Tasmania. Their son Richard Hilder wrote a manuscript of reminiscences of the early settlers of Emu Bay .

Susan Hayhoe married Henry Jabez Unwin in Warrnambool, Victoria in 1855 and went on to have a large family.

John Thompson Hayhoe, a stock keeper and drover  married Mary Anne Adamson in Koroit, Victoria in 1869. An obituary exists..

Robert Buck Hayhoe....see below

Hayhoe Chart

Charles Hayhoe
There was a Charles Hayhoe transported to Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) in 1835 aboard the ship Augusta Jessie. From Norfolk, he had been convicted for robbery and sentenced to 14 years. He was 22 years old (ie born 1813), a farm labourer from Chifdam. (The IGI shows a Charles Hayhoe christened in Cawston in 1817). Charles Hayhoe was given a conditional pardon in Oct 1843. He married Mary Ann Godfrey in Campbell Town in 1844; aged 31. There is no record of children. A Charles Hayhoe left Launceston for Melbourne on the 8 April 1852 aboard the City of Melbourne. and a Charles Hayhoe died in Victoria in 1884 aged 77 years.

( thanks to Dianne Neilsen for bringing this to my attention, I cannot find a family connection but looking)

Esther Mackay Ross & Ross Robert Davidson
Esther Ross, with brother Alexander Ross came to Australia as assisted immigrants. They left behind their life in the troubled highlands of Scotland. They came from around Tain in Ross & Cromarty, near Inverness. The previous generations had experienced the tragedy of the Highland Clearances where rich landlords evicted thousands of crofters (tenant farmers) often because running sheep was more profitible. Esther's death certificate shows Esther McKay Davidson, born Edderton, Ross, parents Alexander & Margaret Ross, farmers and the informant was Alexander Ross, brother. The IGI shows Esther McKay Ross christened at Kincardine 29 Jan 1824, parents Alexander Ross and Margaret Munro. The names Ross and Alexander were very common and thus it is difficult to draw any conclusions from futher persural of the IGI. The birth certificate of her daughter Margaret gives Esther's place of birth as Tain. The three towns are not far apart.

WikiPedia References
Highland Clearances

Esther and Alexander arrived in Geelong aboard "Aurora" in 1848. Esther worked for Mr Holmes of Barrabool Hills, just out of Geelong, as a dairymaid. She married Ross Davidson in 1849, bears four children of which three survive childhood and in 1858, dies of puerperal fever. The family had moved from Geelong to Hamilton in the intervening time. The children were sent to the care of other family members, probably Esther's brother Alexander

Alexander Ross, married Elizabeth Hutchinson in 1853, in Hamilton, Victoria and went on to head a large family.

Ross Davidson, born Port Glasgow, may have been a conditional exile. A Ras Davidson arrived Williamstown, Victoria on the Stratheden 26 Jan 1846,  Conditional exiles had completed a part of their goal term and then sent to Australia as free men so long as they did not return to England until their original sentence was up. His occupation is mentioned as Gold Digger, Blacksmith, Nailer and Miner. After Esther's death he remarried Mary Lowrie in 1873 and died in Hamilton in 1887. Little more is known.


Robert Buck Hayhoe & Margaret Anne Davidson

RBHayhoe MargDavidson

The youngest son of James Buck Hayhoe and Susan Whatley was Robert Buck Hayhoe. He married Margaret Anne Davidson  the youngest daughter of Ester Ross and Ross Davidson.  Robert & Margaret settled in Penshurst, in Western Victoria not far from Hamilton. He was mentioned as a blacksmith and wheelwright. Later he is noted as a Hotel Keeper of the Victoria Hotel,  Penshurst.

Victoria Hotel maybe
Vic Hotel Older

Christopher Andrews suggests this was the Victoria Hotel at 100 Bell Street, Penshurst, Victoria.
Recently renovated and now (2021) operating as "The Penny Wine Bar". Thank you Chris and Google

A tragic accident occurred to Robert in 1891. It seems he was either kicked by a horse or hurt when a horse drawn "Junker" tipped over. Serious head injuries occurred and Robert was admitted to the Ararat hospital where he was to remain  for the rest of his days. Margaret and the children  remained in Penshurst for a while then moved to Ballarat when her youngest daughter Veronica gained a scholarship to the Sacred Heart College. Margaret operated a boarding house for some years at 113 Lyons Street Ballarat. Later she moved with the family to 5 Canterbury Road, Albert Park.

There children

Robert Buck Hayhoe was a gardener and at times worked at Ripponlea and Mt. Macedon

Fred Hayhoe, a jockey, died from injuries in a fall during a steeplechase at Caulfield racecourse in 1908. He was riding the favorite Envoy

Stephen Hayhoe (also a jockey) perished in Poperinge, Belgium, Oct. 1917 during WW1. See the Australian War Museum site for more detail

Roland Adhelm Ignatius (Bob) Hayhoe was a drover and horse breaker and later a gang member with the Victorian Railways at Ravenswood. He married Rubina Exon in 1914

Veronica see below..

Reginald Eugene Hayhoe ..mentioned in Trove

Veronica Anastasia Scholastica Hayhoe

Veronica and George Holland (centre and left) on their honeymoon at Narbethong, Victoria

Veronica won a scholarship to Sacred Heart College in Ballarat. The family moved to Ballarat and Susan operated a boarding house. Veronica went on to marry one of  boarders, George Richard Holland.

Emails and  Newspaper Cuttings


Found your web site through the norfolk Surname list. I have HAYHOE/HAYHOW on my
tree from a different part of Norfolk and have hit a brick wall. My family is from West Dereham.

This is what I have.
Thomas HAYHOW married 3 times....(i)
Sarah WOODS (ii)Jemima LAMBERT and (iii)
Maria-------.This last marriage is the
one that is my line. From the West
Dereham Parish Registers I note that
they had a family of girls...Mary(b.
1791) Elizabeth(b.1800) Sarah(b.1806)
Maria(b.1808) [and also my GG grandma
Ann(b, 1811) but not in the registers.]
Also Mary died aged 20, Sarah died aged
14,James(a son?) died aged
19......leaving just Elizabeth,Maria and
my Ann. My Ann lived to the end of the
19th century and produced 9 offspring
with her husband Edward BRUCE.

I'm really pleased to finally be in touch with other HAYHOW offspring.
Maybe you have info to help me?
Look forward to hearing from you

in Walsingham Norfolk
I have found your information on the Hayhoe family by chance, and am related to Charles Heyhoe the convict, which is quite unfortunate, but provides a colouful history! He was actually born in 1811 of parents Robert Heyhoe, and Susannah (nee Mayhew). The village he was born at was not Chifdam, but Shipdham, near Norwich....I know because I live near there, and that is the correct name, and  could quite easily become mis transcribed. I am actually going to drive out there tomorrow, as I have found a relative in Tucson Arizona who is also interested in the roots of the Hayhoe family, and I want to take some photos for her.
I would like to know how Charles fits into the tree of the Hayhoe family which you have. I also have detailed the same family with the thought that Robert, Charles father could have been a brother of the original Hayhoes, having been born in 1775.
Of our branch, half stayed in Norfolk, and half moved to another county in England..more details if you are interested..and are you related in some way???
Hope to hear from you,
And from Maggie, April 2013

...This is of interest to us because of the cross-reference ROBERT HEYHOE with SUSANNAH MAYHEW which appears at the top of an inherited Geneology Chart on my Father’s side.

The accompanying notes in our records tell us that the Heyhoes were originally 3 Dutch brothers, (diamond merchants) who anglicised their name from HEYHOEUGH when they settled in Shipdham Norfolk. A later descendant George Heyhoe & family still live in Swaffham I believe although I have not yet contacted them.....


...Just to say a big thank you for putting me in touch with Vivien re the Heyhoe family tree. It turns out we do have strong links as her tree extends out from my great grandmother's oldest brother. We're still working on the whole thing but I'll let you know if anything crops up which is of interest to you.
Hayhows of Shipdham, Norfolk

Hello Peter,

My maiden name is Hayhoe, so I discovered and read the site page about
your Hayhoe forebears with great interest and would love to hear how
your branch of the family tree ties in with my own.

I am a descendant - the great great great granddaughter - of John Hayhow
(born circa 1803 in Shipdham, Norfolk), who I believe to have been the
son of Robert and Susanna Heyhoe (née Mayhew).
John moved to the adjacent county of Lincolnshire fairly early in his
adult life, marrying a Lincolnshire lass (Mary Ann Grasley) in Holbeach
in 1829 and settling there to raise his family.
I also discovered that, interestingly, another Hayhow - William (born
circa 1802 in Shipdham) was living close by at Leake, near Boston, in
Lincolnshire at that same time.
I think that they were most likely brothers, and Robert and Susanna
Heyhoe did indeed also have a slightly older son of that name.
Unlike John though, who remained in Lincolnshire his whole life, William
and his family very soon emigrated to New York in America, where he
founded a new dynasty of the Hayhoe family.
Do let me know if any of this information is of interest to you.

I would love to find out more and be in contact with other Hayhoes
researching the Robert and Susanna Heyhoe branch of the family, and so
would be extremely grateful if you could also pass on (if possible) my
information to Vivien and Maggie.

Hope to hear from you,

With kind regards,



The racing at Caulfield on Saturday did not, unfortunatly', pass off without a seri- ous accident, which resulted in tho death ol the jockey Frederick Hayhoe. He resided at Penshurst, and arrived in Melbourne a week or two ago to ride Envoy, a mare owned by Mr. A. Olle. Envoy was successful in the steeplechase at Sandown-park last Wednesday. She had no previoUN public practice as a steeplechaser (thins being her first race over fences), but the Sandown-park course is a mild one, and' she easily got round, winning with lengths to spare. On the strength of her form there she was made favourite at Caulfield, and had just completed a round of the journey when she fell at the log», the last obstacle of the treble In front of tho stand. The accident took place in full view of the spectators. Envoy was. not interfered with in any way, but blundered into the obstacle, mid, coming down awk- wardly, rolled over her rider. The fall looked a very bad one, and when Hayhoe was seen to be stretched out on the ground motionlesss the gravest fears were entertained. These proved to be too well grounded, tis, on being carried into the castittlity-room, the Unfortunate jockey ex- pired. His chest was badly crushed and his head was also injured. V The body was later on removed to the Morgue.

An inquiry into the circuiw)-inces con- nected With the iletith of the jockey will he held by tho coroner to-day. Ifnyhoo was a single man, 23 years of age, and was an experienced horseman, having ridden several winners in the Western district. He met with a serious accident borne lime tigo, his spine being injured, and it wns some time before he could resume riding.

His brother', Stephen Hayhoe, who had a mount on Tattiemoor in Hie Hurdle, Race, earlier in the day, was a witness of the accident. The ileceascd's relatives reside nt Ballarat, und were without delay com- municated with by telegraph, and they ar- rived in Melbourne bv the evening train on Saturday.


MELBOURNE, Tuesday. — During an inquiry concerning the death of Frederick Hayhoe, the jockey who was' killed at Caulfield on Saturday, Coroner Cole expressed the opinion that if the length of steeplechase races was made greater it would tend to minimise the speed of tho race, which was very fast.  He found that death was accidental.

Melbourne, November 1. (1891)

At Warrnambool, yesterday, Samuel Hayhoe, a boy, was accidentally shot dead by David Heltmore, another lad. The Latter works in the gunshop
of his brother, and seeing Hayhoe passing the window he playfully pointed a rifle at him with fatal results.

PENSHURST, Thursday. John Hayhoe, 71 years of age, had his neck broken to-day  owing to his horse falling. Hayhoe was riding after stock when the accident occurred. He leaves a widow and grown-up family. 

 'Mr..William Joseph Hayhoe, of Robert Street, South Bundaberg, Queensland, parsed away on January 13th, at the age of 71 years. Mr. Hayhoe, who resided in Morwell for a number of years, went to Mt. Perry in the Northern State, where he managed a mine in the boom days. He later took up residence in Bundaberg, and for twenty-five years conducted a dairy at Rubyanna, from which business he retired in 1942,due to ill-health. Mr. Hayhoe, a veteran of the South African war, is survived by his widow, two daughters and four sons, two of whom are in the A.I.F. Mrs. C. J. McFarlane, Latrobe Road, Morwell, is a sistrr of the deceased. The late Mr. Hayhoe went to the South African war with the late Mr, George Bolding, of Morwell. It will be of interest to Morwell people to know that one of his sons was associated with Bruce Vary during the present war.

- Officially reported, after being wounded four times, died October 23, 1917,   at 10th Casualtv Clearing Station of gunshot wounds penetrating chest, after 2 years and   3 months' active service in Egypt and France. Driver Stephen Hayhoe, beloved brother of Bob, Rowl, Reg (on active service, wounded) and Vera, and loving daddy of little Vesie. Queensland   papers please copy. 

His happy smile and pleasant ways Arc pleasant to recall;

He always had a pleasant word. And died a noble hero.

- (His sorrowing mother Ballarat