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Research update

A while back I posted about my husband's Great Grandfather James Harvey Murray (see here) and how I was trying to confirm that his wife Helen was the daughter of Baron Raimund Von Stillfried-Rathenitz and his Japanese partner.  My research proved to be correct and Helen was indeed the daughter of Baron Raimund Von Stillfried-Rathenitz and Nishiyama Haru.  Helen and her two sisters Mary and Anna were left in a convent school in Singapore in 1883, prior to the Baron returning to Europe from Japan permanently.  I have found newspaper articles, shipping records and other records with regards to Helen and family and have shared this with other researchers and hope to find more in the future. One record of interest that I intend to follow up is here.
An interesting family story that I have been told is that after the end of the second World War when Helen and her daughter Dorothy wanted to go to England to meet up with surviving family members at Barrow in Furness (her daughter Violet and grandson Ronnie (my husbands father) had lived there during the war after escaping Singapore) it came to light that Helen had a Japanese mother and there was quite the scandal.  It certainly would not have been a good time to have had a Japanese mother and an Austrian father!  Nevertheless she was allowed into England arriving on board the M.V. Cilicia on the 29th October 1945.  They did not stay very long as in mid 1946 Helen and Dorothy returned to Singapore on board the Indrapoera.  Helen died on the 14th February 1955 at her residence 342 East Coast Road, Singapore.


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