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Harry Parsons in India

Charles Henry ‘Harry’ Parsons (b.1905) and Pauline Dumaine

Harry Parsons (b.1905)
Son of Charles Henry Parsons (d.1962) and Ada Kelly (nee Henderson) 1871-1936)
Born 1905
Married Pauline Dumaine 
They had three children

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Neil Parsons

David Parsons

Valerie Parsons 

The following information was sent to me by Noel Kelly. ‘ The Parsons moved to the farm in Bazpur in the 1930s and [Charles Henry] ‘Harry’ [Parsons] managed the farm for his father Charles Henry Parsons. The farm was initially quite undeveloped and the farm house small. They had dogs which they left chained outside the first night at the farm and they were killed and eaten by wild animals maybe tigers or hyenas. No one saw which animal attacked the dogs but only the empty chains were discovered in the morning. Pauline didn’t like living at the farm because it was too isolated with no white people nearby except for the Franciscan missionaries and for a few weeks in winter Irish Christian Brothers from Nainital. Pauline spent summers in Nainital socializing. When Neil [their son] turned six he was sent to Sherwood College  boarding school in Nainital. In 1943 and 1944 I [Noel Kelly]  was in Saint Joseph’s College which was next to the house where Pauline spent her summers and I was invited to spend the Sundays with Pauline and Neil. In 1944 during our winter holidays (8th December to 14th March) I was invited to go to Bazpur and spend some time with the Parsons mainly to keep Neil company.  I went there and walked form the station stop with a farm servant to the farm and at the entrance was the old car( not in use) of Grandad Parsons. The house was now quite large and comfortable. I went hunting with uncle Harry because their only source of meat was from hunting deer one week and wild boar the next week. The animals killed and the meat was shared with those working on the farm. Farm workers lived in houses on the farm nearby the Parson’s house. The Parsons daughter was born in Nainital and I went to the christening. At the christening ceremony Pauline told the minister that I will not be taking part in the prayers because I was RC. So I just listened and I am still  wondering why I couldn’t partake because the prayers and the christening were the same as the RC service. Pauline then decided to leave Harry and go back to Madras. Neil decided to leave Bazpur and go with his mother ( Neil looked like her). Pauline also wrote a letter to Harry informing that Valarie was not his child and was a result of an affair in Nainital. For some reason David also believed that he was the result of an affair (David looked liked the Hendersons and was told so by aunty Mary) and when grown up had little to do with the Parsons. David went to Sherwood College till 1957. In 1958 David left India and stayed with aunty Mary in Sidcup for about six weeks till he joined the British Army. In July 1958 I was in England and met David again at aunty Mary’s place. After he joined the Army and he had little to do with Aunty Mary who was very disappointed. Neil, Pauline and Valarie all settled in England somewhere in the midlands. Aunty Mary lost contact with Neil and David, she didn’t want to have anything to do with Pauline and Valarie. Aunty Mary told me that uncle Harry requested in his will that he be buried in an RC grave. Grandad Parsons left Bazpur to live with his daughter Annie in Cape Town some time in the 1950s.’

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