Former Maryborough woman Robyne Melksham at the grave of one of her ancestors, George Melksham, who was given the surname after the city in England when he was left on a doorstep after he was born.
Former Maryborough woman Robyne Melksham at the grave of one of her ancestors, George Melksham, who was given the surname after the city in England when he was left on a doorstep after he was born. Contributed

Baby left on a doorstep important part of family history

A FORMER Maryborough woman's trip around the world has taken her back to the origins of her family, starting with the birth of a baby boy who was left on a doorstep in the English town of Melksham.

Robyne Cuerel, whose family name is Melksham, travelled first to France and then to the country of her ancestors.

Taking a train to Melksham, she found the grave of her great-great-great grandfather, George Melksham, who was found on a doorstep as an infant in Melksham in the 1800s.

He was named George after the king at the time and Melksham after the town.

"They didn't know where the baby came from or who he was," Robyne said.

George spent his life in Melksham, working as an engine driver in a factory.

Robyne did not know who raised George, but she knew that he had met a Jane Parsons who he married and they had about seven children who continued the Melksham name.

George was born in 1815 and when he was discovered on the doorstep it was said the wrap he was swathed in was of good quality.

That has led to some speculation concerning a Sir William Long and a servant girl, but Robyne says the true ancestry of her family will never be known.

One of George's sons, Edwin, and his wife Mary, made the brave choice to move to Australia.

"With hopes and visions of a better life, they crossed the globe to Maryborough."

The Heritage City was also the birthplace of Robyne's grandparents, her parents and her siblings and the place she calls her "favourite town in all the world".

Robyne said she hoped the mother who left her baby boy on the doorstep that day was able to watch him grow from afar and was comforted knowing her son had a full life and a family of his own.