Favourite Find

#52 Ancestors 52 Weeks

Birth and Baptism details of Grace Piper

The birth and baptism details of Grace Piper were one of my favourite finds in 2021. Written on scraps of paper and hidden within the confines of a birthday book belonging to my grandmother was the details of Grace PIPER’s birth and baptism. These details enabled her family line to be traced to the late 1600’s and early 1700’s in county Devon. So who was Grace PIPER?

Grace Piper the daughter of George PIPER and Mary GARLAND was born on the 28th December 1811 in Black Torrington, Devon [3]. She died in Mount Barker in South Australia, no formal records exist for her death and there are no records of her burial, R. F. William provides some information, see page 327 [4].

Grace married William DUFTY on the December 14, 1831 in Shebbear, Devon, England [5]. They had the following children:

  1. Betsy DUFTY born 1832 Devon [6]
  2. John DUFTY born 1834 Shebbear, Devon [7]
  3. Mary DUFTY born 1837 Shebbear, Devon [8]
  4. Grace DUFTY born 1839 Shebbear, Devon [9]
  5. Ann DUFTY born 1841 Milton Abbot, Devon [10]
  6. Martha DUFTY born 1843 Bridestowe, Devon [11]
  7. Esther Ann DUFTY born 1828 Clawton, Devon [12]
  8. Lydia Piper DUFTY born 1851 South Australia [13].

The family emigrated to the colony of South Australia in 1851, Esther died on the journey. The Shipping record tells us that William had to pay part of his passage as he was over age and they had too many children.

Marriage record of William DUFTY and Grace PIPER found in the birthday book [16]
Image of the family from the Shipping record of the Osceola [17]

Grace was one of four children born to George PIPER and Mary GARLAND. The 1841 census tells us that the PIPER family were farmers living at Graddon, Black Torrington, Holsworthy, Devon [18]. Grace Piper came from a long line of farmers, yeoman and husbandman. All worked in agricultural and lived within a 10 mile radius of Black Torrington. The pedigree chart below provides additional information of where Grace PIPER came from.

Pedigree Chart PIPER, Grace. Family Tree Maker [19]

While there is still more research to continue with this branch of the family and easy access to the Devon archives would be useful. The discovery of the Grace’s birth and baptism details disproved that Agnes BROOKES was the mother of Grace. Thru-lines on Ancestry has suggested Agnes as a possible parent for Grace, but no records were ever found to substantiate this. The paper record provided additional information and a location to search providing enough details that the hunt could begin. Fortunately, many Devon records are provided on both findmypast and FamilySearch, with the ability to access images. Allowing the researcher the opportunity to make sure that there have been no errors in transcribing the images.

We know from the records that Grace PIPER was born the daughter of a farmer and came from family who had a long history working in agricultural in Devon. This continued for her family after they migrated to the South Australian colony. Through her marriage she become involved in Bible Christian movement and her husband continued his involvement especially after her death when he became a Bush Missionary in rural New South Wales [20].

What family records have you found that support your research?

#52ancestors52weeks.


  1. Black Torrington Church, Keltek Trust, 2005 Creative Commons accessed on Flickr January 15, 2021.
  2. Grace PIPER birth and baptism details, found in a birthday book of the authors grandmother.
  3. Baptism PR, England, Black Torrington, Devon. January 9, 1812. PIPER, Grace. Devon Baptisms, South West Heritage Trust, 2907A/PR/1/3. https://www.findmypast.com.au : accessed October 24, 2021.
  4. Williams, R. F., To Find The Way. Yankalilla and District 1836 – 1986 (Adelaide, South Australia, The Yankalilla Historical Society inc, 1986).
  5. Marriage PR, England, Shebbear, Devon. December 14, 1831. DUFTY, William and PIPER, Grace. Devon Marriages and Banns, South West Heritage Trust. https://www.findmypast.co.uk : accessed October 24, 2021.
  6. Baptism PR, England, Shebbear, Devon. April 15, 1833. DUFTY, Betsy. [Transcription] Collection: England Births and Christenings 1538 – 1975. https://familysearch.or/ark:/61903/1:1:J3XG-1WY : accessed November 2, 2021.
  7. Baptism PR, England, Shebbear, Devon. April 15, 1837. DUFTY, John. [Transcription] Collection: England Births and Christenings 1538 – 1975. https://familysearch.or/ark:/61903/1:1:N5ZL-CQ3 :   accessed November 2, 2021.
  8. Baptism PR, England, Shebbear, Devon. April 5, 1837. DUFTY, Mary. [Transcription] Collection: England Births and Christenings 1538 – 1975. https://familysearch.or/ark:/61903/1:1:J7SG-46T : accessed November 2, 2021.
  9. Births (CR), England, Shebbear, Torrington Union, Devon. April 21, 1839. DUFTY, Grace. Entry No 149.
  10. Births (CR), England, Milton Abbott, Tavistock Union, Devon. May 12, 1841. DUFTY, Ann. Entry 157.
  11. Births (CR), England, Bridestow, Okehampton, Devon. July 3, 1843. DUFTY, Martha. Entry 489.
  12. Baptism PR, England, Holsworthy, Devon. November 23, 1848. DUFTY, Esther Ann. Devon Baptism, South West Heritage Trust (Holsworthy Bible Christians Baptisms 1847 – 1852. https://findmypast.com.au : accessed January 15, 2022.
  13. No records exist for the birth of Lydia Piper DUFTY, the birth year is a guess from her obituary. See burials.
  14. State Records South Australia. Passenger Lists 1845 – 1940. DUFTY, William and Family.  1851 Osceola. 3/1851 Osceola. https://www.archives.sa.gov.au : accessed November 23, 2021.
  15. Newspaper, SHIPPING INTELLIGENCE. (1851, April 7). South Australian Register (Adelaide, SA : 1839 – 1900), p. 2. Retrieved November 18, 2021, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article38450696 .
  16. Image of the marriage record of DUFTY William and PIPER, Grace found in the birthday book.
  17. DUFTY Family on the arrivals list of the Osceola. State Records South Australia. Passenger Lists 1845 – 1940. DUFTY, William and Family.  1851 Osceola. 3/1851 Osceola. https://www.archives.sa.gov.au : accessed November 23, 2021.
  18. Census Records, England, Graddon, Black Torrington, Holsworthy Devon. June 6, 1841. PIPER, George (head). HO107, piece 256, folio 4, page 3, schedule 4347. 1841 England, Wales and Scotland Census. https://www.findmypast.com.au : accessed October 24, 2021.
  19. Family Tree Maker Pedigree Chart. DUFTY, Grace 5 generations. Created January 15, 2022.
  20. Death (CR). New South Wales, East Maitland. March 12, 1900. DUFTY, William. Registration Number 2191/1900

4 thoughts on “Favourite Find

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  1. Love reading these posts 😊

    On Sat, 15 Jan. 2022, 1:44 pm loades of branches, wrote:

    > Claire Loades posted: ” #52 Ancestors 52 Weeks Birth and Baptism details > of Grace Piper The birth and baptism details of Grace Piper were one of my > favourite finds in 2021. Written on scraps of paper and hidden within the > confines of a birthday book belonging to my grand” >

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