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Atkinson (nèe Clift), Elizabeth

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Fast Facts
Type of person Individual
Date of birth 1829
Place of birth Dittisham in Devon, England
Date of arrival 1840
Principal occupation Wife and mother
Date of departure 1880
Date of death 1898

Elizabeth Gidley Clift was born in Dittisham in Devon, England and she was baptized there on 6 April 1829. She was the daughter of John Clift (1797-1879) and Eleanor Gidley (1798-1871) of McLaren Vale. She arrived in 1840, aged 10, with her parents aboard Orissa which left London on 19 Oct 1839.

Elizabeth Gidley Clift, aged 21, married Joseph Atkinson (1824-1878), aged 25, at St. Stephen’s Church in Willunga on 25 April 1850. They had 12 children (4 sons and 8 daughters): Susannah Ann (1851–1932) m. Thomas Marshall (1849-1909) on 10/04/1875, William (1853-1924) publican m. Ellen Jane Lunn nee Tamblyn (1850-1933) on 24/06/1879, Ellen (1855–1895) m. James Arthur Colville (1842-1904) on 05/06/1877, Catherine (1857-1919), m. Stephen Holman Watters (1855-1925) on 27/08/1879, Ann (1859-1903) m. William McMurray (1858-1907) on 11/06/1879, Thomas (1860 –1861) died aged 8 months, Harriet Louisa (1863–1958) m. Richard Bigg (1860-1941) on 15/06/1887, Mary Elizabeth (1866-1889) m. Bernard McCarron (1860-1935) on 19/01/1889, John (1869 –1869) died aged 19 days, Alice Jane (1870–1938) m. John Benjamin Noble (1858-1926) on 12/03/1912, Robert Joseph (1873–1875) died aged 2 years and Elsie Beatrice (1876–1891) died aged 15 years at Port Pirie, unmarried.

Elizabeth Atkinson lived in Willunga for about three decades between about 1850 and 1880. After 28 years of marriage, her husband Joseph died in 1878, when she was 49 years old. By 1880 she had left Willunga and for the last two decades of her life she lived in Port Germein and then Nairne. Aged 69 years, Elizabeth Atkinson (nèe Clift) died on 28 May 1898 and she is buried in St. Stephen’s Anglican cemetery in Willunga.


  • Adelaide Observer 5 June 1880:17
  • Evening Journal 9 Nov 1878:3
  • South Australian Register 2 Jan 1899:7

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