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"L'Anneau Le Quiniat"
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Guillaume Le Quiniat was the sixth child of the family of ten children of Pierre Marie Le Quiniat and Marie Reine Cartier. Born into a coastal Breton family of seamen it was probably inevitable that Guillaume should to go sea, but perhaps that was not what Guillaume had in mind for a career.
Nevertheless, whether it was by choice or not, at the age of 16 years he joined the merchant ship, "Breiz Izel", and sailed for Sumatra where the ship was then re-laden with sugar and sailed for the port of Melbourne, Australia, arriving in 1882.
For reasons unknown, Guillaume decided that a life in Australia was preferable to a life at sea so he decided to desert from the ship, and unable to speak any English, he was found by a kind lady in the streets of South Melbourne who took him in and he stayed with the family for a few years and then disappeared from them and went off to live in Ballarat. Somehow he became skilled in hairdressing, possibly learned during his time at sea, and pursued that occupation for the remainder of his working life.
His name had been anglicised, probably inadvertently due to the different alphabet pronunciation between the English and the French, to William Quinert, and at twenty six years of age he married Alice Maud Manton in Ballarat in June 1892. There they had six children - Phillip Vaughan 1893, Gilbert Hope 1894, William Norwood 1897, Ada Elizabeth 1903, Jack 1907 and Alice Manton 1911, but sadly, their mother died giving birth to Alice in 1911.
Being left with six children, four boys aged 18, 17, 14 and 4 and two girls, an eight year old and a baby, the family was obviously thrown into turmoil. So it was that Ada Elizabeth, (Betty 8 years) went to live with her uncle, William Vaughan Manton (Bill) whilst Jack went to Melbourne to live with a family there. The baby Alice also went to Melbourne with people named Henderson. How these arrangements were made we do not know, but before the days of the Welfare State, farming out children was often the only option. Alice died in Ballarat at the age of 21 years whilst the eldest boy Phillip went to Sydney and the others went into the drapery trade. Gilbert moved to Melbourne after the war and Bill returned to Ballarat where he remained for the rest of his life.
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