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Family photo Friday

To me, the really amazing thing about this week’s photo is that I was nursed on many occasions by the subject; someone who had been described in the Northern Star as an “early pioneer’ of the far north coast region of New South Wales . (1 )

The ‘early pioneer’ in this informal portrait is my 2 x great grandmother Mary Ann TOWNS (1868-1956). My father always fondly referred to her as ‘Gran’

Mary Ann was one of the eight daughters of Edward and Ann Towns of Blakebrook, NSW.(2) . She married Henry Joseph BROWNING on 27 August, 1884.( 3) The couple lived at Blakebrook for most of their lives and had 9 children, one of them being my great grandmother Mary Isabel Browning.

Mary Ann Browning had been married to Henry Joseph Browning for just under 62 years when he died on 29 July 1946. (4) She died almost exactly ten years later on 30 July 1956. (5)


1 Anon., ‘Golden Wedding’, Northern Star, Friday 14 September 1934, p. 4.

2. “Golden Wedding’, Northern Star, p.4.

3. Marriage Certificate of Henry Joseph Browning and Mary Ann Towns, married 27 August 1884, Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages New South Wales, 6981/1884.

4. Anon., Mr. Henry Browning, Northern Star, Tuesday 30 July 1946, p. 3

5. Death Certificate of Mary Ann Browning, died on 30 July 1956, Registry of Births Deathhs and Marriages New South Wales, 26146/1956.

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