John Brookes Thurtell

John Brookes Thurtell was a sea captain. He was born in England about 1812 and died February 15, 1879, at age 67. He is buried in Kirkly Churchyard, Lowestoft, Suffolk County, England. He married Ellen Aldred (possibly related to a prominent Lowestoft family of that name, including Obed Aldred, a founding partner of the Lowestoft China Works in 1758). John's grandmother, Anne Browne Thurtell, was a granddaughter of Robert Browne, one of the founders of the Lowestoft China Works.

Edward Goddard Thurtell, the oldest son of John Brookes Thurtell and Ellen Aldred Thurtell, was born September 19, 1840, in Norfolk County, England. He later emigrated to South Africa and founded a large family in South Africa and Rhodesia.

By 1845 John Brookes Thurtell and his family were living in Yarmouth, Norfolk, England, since their son Frederick Godfrey Thurtell was born there that year. He probably died as an infant since they had another son named Frederick Godfrey Thurtell in 1847. Their daughter Ellen Thurtell was born in Yarmouth in about 1846. According to information from the Norwich Public Libraries a John Brooks Thurtell was living at South Quay, Yarmouth, in 1852. This is probably the same person.

It is highly probable that he is the Capt. J. B. Thurtell shown on an internet listing of "Index to Unassisted Inward Passenger Lists" to Victoria, Australia, shown as reaching Victoria in February 1854 on the ship the Wigram, which departed from a British port and is on fiche 063, page 001, at the Public Record Office in Victoria, Australia. The web site for this index as of October 1999 was Another web site found at the same time at showed J. B. Thurtell was Captain of the Wigram arriving from a British port in February 1854 on fiche 63, page 1. A lookup request provided in October 1999 by Macbeth Genealogical Serices confirmed that the fiche showed that J. B. Thurtell was the captain of the Wigram on this voyage.

His wife, Ellen Aldred Thurtell, is shown as a widow, age 69, born in Yarmouth, Norfolk, England, head of the household with her occupation shown as Annuitant, in the 1881 British census CD. Her dwelling is shown as St. Georges Road, North West End, and the census place is Kirkley, Suffolk, England. Living with her is her daughter, Ellen Thurtell, age 35, born in Yarmouth, Norfolk, England. Also living with them is her sister, Sarah Some, shown as age 61, born in Filby, Norfolk, England, whose occupation is shown as housekeeper. The source is FHL Film 1341458, PRO Ref RG11, Piece 1901, Folio 54, Page 30.

The pictures above of John Brookes Thurtell and the card below are from the collection of his descendant, Errol Thurtell.

Additions and corrections are always appreciated!

Susan T. Miller
1411 West Childs Street
Wheaton, Illinois 60187-4601
Phone 630-682-0108

Links to other sites on the Web

Susan T. Miller's Genealogy Home Page
Index to Pages with Photos
Family Page for John Brookes Thurtell and Ellen Aldred Thurtell
More Information about John Brookes Thurtell

I am always interested in exchanging information regarding the Thurtell and related families!

Send E-mail to Susan T. Miller at

© 2000
Last updated October 9, 2000