G5 05 John Henry Sullivan

John Henry Sullivan was a great grandson of Timothy Sullivan through his grandfather John Sullivan and father Arthur Herbert Sullivan.

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G5     TS/JS/AHS/ JOHN HENRY SULLIVAN (1912 - 1987)

John Henry Sullivan (Harry) was the first son and third child (of eight) of Arthur Herbert Sullivan and wife Mary Ellen (nee Alexander). He was born in Numurkah during the time his father was working the Sullivan land-holdings at Dunbulbulane.


When the Dunbulbalane land-holdings were sold off according to grandmother Mary Sullivan's will, Arthur Sullivan decided to move to Tullamore in New South Wales north east of Condoblin to farm close to his wife Mary Ellen's family. Arthur and his eldest son Harry (John Henry aged 11) travelled to Tullamore in a buggy with a pair of horses along with six more horses and a wagon loaded with furniture and other belongings, the journey taking 17 days.

Harry stayed with his parents through the moves to Tullamore, Burgooney, Tullibigeal and finally Holgate near Gosford. By then he was about 30, and the family was expanding and dispersing as his sisters progressively married.

The photo is from the 1930 and shows John Henry Sullivan with his mother Mary Ellen.


Photo courtesy of Mrs C Griffin 




Family folklore has it that in 1945 Christmas, Edna Metzke (nee Sullivan) came up to Gosford to have Christmas with her parents there. She brought her baby son Kerry with her, and she had also invited Vera Mellerick from Shepparton to come along to help with the baby on the train. Edna was also intent on a bit of match making between Vera and one of her brothers. It worked because John Henry had proposed to Vera and they'd announced their engagement before Vera left to go back to Shepparton. John Henry by then aged 34 and Vera were married in April 1946.

Once married Harry and young family moved to Lisarow on the Central Coast where he found work as a railway fettler, timber miller, and then carpenter(unqualified) for his brother in law (Charles Metzke). By 1949 they were living in Etna St Gosford.

Harry and Vera had four children, Noela Mary Sullivan in 1946, Rodney John Sullivan in 1949, Neale David Sullivan in 1954, and Michael Anthony Sullivan in 1960.

John Henry Sullivan took up hobby farming on his retirement in 1968, but the onset of HSP took away the prospect of an active retirement. In 1980 he moved to the Adelene Retirement Village. He was hospitalised in 1986, and died from prostate cancer in 1987 aged 75. John Henry Sullivan was buried in the Palmdale Ceneteryon theNSW Central Coast.