Susannah NICHOLS was the eighth child of John and Ann (nee PUGH) NICHOLS. Susannah was born on 18th January 1814 at Prospect NSW.

The 1828 Census lists Susannah as "Susan NICHOLLS", Age 16 years, Born in the Colony and a Servant to Mr Joseph Melville of Pitt Street Sydney. Mr Melville, a ticket of leave convict, had a wife Anne and two children, Phoebe age 2 years and 6 months and James 3 months living on 3 Acres with 3 horses, 30 cattle and 50 sheep. Also living at the same address was William Keery and Benjamin Kirkley. We can assume that Susannah, at this time, had a busy and hard life, her father, John Nichols, having died on Christmas Day 1822, when Susannah was not quite 9 years of age.

On 4th March 1837, Susannah NICHOLS married Charles KINSELA at St Luke's Church of England Liverpool. Witnesses to this marriage were Eliza NICHOLS, (younger sister of the bride) William TRISTRAM, (stepfather of the groom) and Robert Anderson (friend of the groom). Charles KINSELA was of the Parish of Liverpool and "Susan NICOLS" was of the Parish of St Phillip's Sydney. Susannah signed with an X and Eliza was able to sign her name.

Charles KINSELA, was born 31st July 1814, and baptised 28th August 1814 at Sydney St Phillip's Church. He was registered as Charles ADAMS, son of Enoch KINSELA and Mary ADAMS. Enoch KINSELA was sent to New South Wales in 1806, per ship Fortune, on a charge of Bigamy. He was an educated man and soon after his arrival, was made manager of the Government Salt Pans. He later set up business ventures for himself with some success. He formed an association with Mary ADAMS (Per William Pitt, 1806) and Mary bore him three children, the third being Charles who was born 1 month and 10 days after his father's death (21st June 1814). Enoch's previous experiences had obviously put him off the idea of marriage, although the quasi-official attitude was that transportation rendered void any current marriage.

On the 5th June 1815, Mary ADAMS and William TRISTRAM, Stonemason were married at St Phillip's Church Sydney. William later became the gaoler at Liverpool.

The 1828 Census lists Charles KINSELA as Charles "KINSLEY", age 15, apprentice upholsterer, to Mr Edward Hunt, Upholsterer of George Street Sydney. Also listed is Charles' brother Thomas, listed as Thomas "KINSALL", age 16 also apprentice upholsterer.

After their marriage, Charles and Susannah KINSELA (nee NICHOLS) went on to have 11 children, but only reared 6 of these children to adulthood.

The 11 children are as follows: -

(1) William Enoch KINSELA, Born 8th March 1838 at Liverpool, Married Sarah Ann EVANS 1863 and Died 17th January 1883 at Liverpool

(2) Charles KINSELA, Born 8th July 1839 at Liverpool, Died 17th April 1840 at Liverpool.

(3) Sarah Ann KINSELA, Born 12th July 1841, at Liverpool, Died 14th October 1841 at Liverpool.

(4) Eliza Jane KINSELA, Born 26th July 1842 at Liverpool, Died 15th October 1848 at Liverpool.

(5) Emma KINSELA, Born 29th May 1844, at Liverpool, Married James McINTOSH 28th March 1863 at Scots Church Sydney, Died 27th July 1836 at Newington Hospital Sydney.

(6) Henry KINSELA, Born 19th April 1846, at Liverpool, Married Mary HOLLIDAY 299th March 1869 at Woolloomooloo, Died 2nd March 1915 at Bexley.

(7) Elizabeth Mary Ann KINSELA, Born 16th February 1848, at Jamieson St., Sydney, Married William Robert STEWART 3rd February 1874 at Sydney, Died 8th September 1933.

(8) Louisa KINSELA, Born 12th November 1849, at Goulburn St., Sydney, Died 22nd September 1852 at Sydney.

(9) Clara KINSELA, Born 12th March 1852, at Goulburn St., Sydney, Married Frederick Timothy Squire O'DONNELL, 2nd April 1874 at Sydney, Died 1937 at Cammeray.

(10) Charles KINSELA, Born 2nd February 1854, at Goulburn St., Sydney, Married Ellen Elizabeth MILHAM, 1875 at Sydney, Died 21st October 1900, at Oxford St., Sydney.

(11) Albert KINSELA, Born 28 November 1857 in Sydney, Baptised 10 January 1858, Died 8 December 1858 at Sussex Street, Sydney.

The apprenticeship of Charles KINSELA ended in 1835. He was a cabinetmaker at the time of his marriage to Susannah and they were probably living with William and Mary Tristram for the first few years of their marriage. Their first son's name, William Enoch, is a nice tribute to Charles stepfather William Tristram and the natural father he never knew, Enoch Kinsela. The baptism of son Henry on 17th May 1846 appears to be the first known record of Charles KINSELA being described as an undertaker. With his training in both upholstery and cabinet making Charles was especially suited to this field and in 1847 Charles moved his wife and family to Sydney. An advertisement in the SMH of 28th December 1847 read: "Funerals performed on the shortest notice and most reasonable terms, Charles KINSELA, Jamieson Street Sydney, having purchased from Mr Edward Hunt his best horse and mourning coach, is enabled to perform funerals with the grandest style, having served his apprenticeship to the trade under Mr E Hunt. Having a travelling Hearse, he can attend the country. NB Hearse, coach and horses can be had for hire to the trade. Apply as above".

By 1859 the family was living at 337 Sussex Street, which Charles owned freehold. One of the secrets of Charles business success was his ability to acquire real estate at advantageous prices as well as the property in Sussex and Goulburn Streets he rapidly acquired premises in South Head Road (Oxford Street), George Street, Crown Street, Harris Street, Market Street, Moore Park, Stanley Street Woolloomooloo and livery stables in Castlereagh Street. These sites became homes for his children, business premises or merely income-returning investments.

A series of family photographs were taken in the early 1860's; they show a fashionable and wealthy middle-class family. Through the industry of her husband the married years of her life must have been lived in a degree of comfort unimagined by her convict parents, or the life experienced by her as a "Currency" lass, as the daughters of convicts were called. Losing 5 of her children in infancy must have been of great sadness.

On 2nd July 1871 Susannah died at her home 363 Sussex Street Sydney, aged 57. She had been sick for 16 months and had died of TB; the death notice described it as a "long and painful illness".

First Fleet Records
Pre 1856 Parish Registers
Birth, Death & Marriage Certificates.
Will: -Charles Kinsela
Convict Indents
Pioneer Register
1828 Census
Land Records
Low's City of Sydney Directory
Fords 1851 Sydney Directory
Book: - John Nichols First Fleeter By Kaye Purnell, Sue Zuck, Sharon Draper, Barbara Coleman & Joy Marden

© 2002 John Nichols Family Society.   Written by Robyn Condliffe March 2002. For more information or for research sharing please contact Susannah Nichols/Kinsela Family Coordinator.