Historical information

The property was named 'Cliburn' after Cliburn in Westmorland (later Cumbria) where Mary Sneddon's mother, Mary Bird (nee Coulston) came from. According to the donor all their houses were given this name. William Sneddon (b.1875, Sandhurst - d. 1957, Deepdene) was a postman in Surrey Hills for many years. His father James (1833 - 1901) ran an estate agency in Surrey Hills started in the 1880s by his father, also James. William's wife was Mary Sneddon, nee Bird, (b. 1878 Bethunga; d. 1948, Surrey Hills); they married in Surrey Hills in James Sneddon's house on 12 November 1903. They had 5 sons and 1 daughter: John William 'Jack' Sneddon (b.1908 - d. 1957); married Mabel Creek. Norman Alexander Sneddon (b. 1910 - d 1989); married Eva Pearl Sampson. Alan Coulston Sneddon (b. 1914 - d. 1985); married Netta May Clow in 1941. Jean Isobel Sneddon (b. 1916 - d. 1976); married Clifford James Jenkin. Douglas Haig Sneddon (b.1918, Surrey Hills - d. 1973, Blackburn); married Myra Marjorie Clewett in 1945. Relationship with Alice Keane: According to the donor, Alice Ruby Dore married Herbert Keane. She was born 21/9/1901 and died 14/4/1926. Her entries in the Victorian BDM index give that her father was Henry Dore and her mother Sarah Ann Bird and that she was born in Neerim. She married Herbert Henry Keane in 1922; her death at the age of 24 years was registered in Heidelberg. According to the donor her young children Wallace and Phyllis were embraced by William and Mary Sneddon. William and Mary Sneddon are buried in Box Hill Cemetery. The donor Robin da Costa-Adams is related by her first marriage to the Sneddon family. Relationship with Bird family: Netta Sneddon was correct in that Alice Keane was likely a relative. The exact relationship is yet to be fully established. Alice's mother's name is given as Sarah Ann Bird (1873-1952) with birth at Tarrawingee; father John Bird and mother Sarah Ann Coburn (REF: Victorian BDM index). Her notice of marriage in The Age in 1894 states she is "the eldest dau of John Bird of Drouin, late of Box Hill and Talgarno." Has her mother's surname been misspelt? Is it Coulston?

Physical description

Sepia photo of Douglas Sneddon and his sister Jean Sneddon taken in the garden of 'Cliburn', the home of their parents William and Mary Sneddon. With them is with Alice Keane. Part of the house is seen on the RHS of the photo. It is an Edwardian timber home. The profile of the house next door can also be seen in the background.

Inscriptions & markings

"Alice Keane / at / Doug & Jean Sneddon / taken at Sneddons / Surrey Hills" in grey lead pencil in Robin da Costa-Adams' writing. "Children of Mary & / William" "An Alice Keane may be an Aunt (crossing out) - Netta / was not sure" in ink in Jocelyn Hall's hand.