Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato

#1370, b. 15 October 1860, d. 21 July 1947

Julian Herbert, sourced from an ancestry tree owned by WMHammond

Individual's Timeline

Birth15 October 1860Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato1
Marriage27 April 1886Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato2,3,4
Death of Father7 October 1894William Cato5
Marriage9 December 1899Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato6
Marriage of Son3 November 1911Ronald Lavington Cato7,8
Death of Mother23 April 1912Rosetta Coggin9
Marriage of Son1913Garnet Raymond Cato10
Marriage of Son6 January 1918Leith Sunderland Cato11
Marriage of Son6 November 1922Esmond Lee Cato12
Death21 July 1947Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato

Primary events

Secondary circumstances

  • Occupation: Joseph was so multi-talented that I had to put it all in a story box.
  • Anecdote: Herbert Cato I remember going off to the Sudan War in a blazing red tunic (note from Shirley - I cannot find any CATOs in the nominal roll for the Sudanese War, nor can I find Joseph listed as taking part in the Boer War)

    He was later a solicitor's clerk in Launceston and married a Miss Sidebottom (what a name) I only remember one son, Garnet who was a crack swimmer.

    Herbert had a wonderful voice and left home to join a theatrical Co. While I was a boy he arrived in Hobart broke wide and after ratting Dad's wardrobe left for N.Z. I was on the wharf as the boat pulled out with Herbert on the sail gaily throwing kisses to Dad from Maggie Moore's mouth
    One day at Stratford I went behind the scenes at the town hall. There were a lot of props interned by the B. Council for rent. I noticed some labels to the effect that they were suppplied by H.J. Cato Theatrical Agent Sydney.

    I last saw him in Sydney in 1935 when he was over 80 and had been to the first World War and had a hollow in his skull you could lay your thumb in.14
  • Name Variation: He was also known as Julian Herbert Cato.
  • Residence: In December 1899 Joseph Herbert and Emily lived in 244 Elizabeth Street, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.13
Some aspects of Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato's life. During what must have been a very full life, Joseph had 2 wives (and one divorce). He was a fruiterer for a time, and performed as a baritone for J C WILLIAMSONS as Herbert CATO, and a sportsman of no mean repute.

He was a cyclist, and the Vice President of a (or the) Launceston Cycling Club in 1883. In the florid terminology of a local newspaper correspondent (Wed 3rd October, 1883) Herbert CATO 'invariable looked "all there" on his steed -- he is certainly a pretty rider, and looks quite at home when mounted'.

He was also the captain of the Launceston Football Team in 1883. His grandson Malcolm says he 'was a captain and coach of Launceston (Australian Rules) football club in 1883. Interestingly the captain for the previous 2 years was W. Sidebottom, whom I guess was Joseph's first wife Maria's brother (?)'. Malcolm goes on to say he read that Joseph played for a short while with Collingwood.

(Shirley's update) This must have been when Collingwood played in the VFA (inaugurated 1892) before they became part of the VFL (inaugurated in 1897). Collingwood's first match was played 12th February 1892, and they won the VFA Premiership in 1896

In 1892 he won an award at the Launceston show for 2 St Bernard Pups.

Some aspects of Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato's life. A relative has been quoted as saying "He was married twice, first to Maria Sidebottom (who died in Canada in 1952 as close as my aunt can remember. I remember her and can also recall my mother telling my sister and I about her death when I was four or five.) I am related to Joseph (Julian) Cato and Maria Sidebottom. The second time he was married was to Emily Lee Cox."
Brushes with the LAW

Joseph was reported in the Sydney Morning Herald as being before the Water Police Court.

"THEFT OP A BICYCLE. At the Water Police Court yesterday, Herbert Cato, 44, theatrical agent, pleaded guilty to stealing a bicycle worth 15 Pound, the property of Graham Sharkey, on March 20. Prosecutor left the machine outside an office in Pitt-street. He saw the accused carrying it away. Prosecutor followed, and asked him what he was doing with the bicycle. Cato said that he was just going for a ride.' Mr. Burke, who appeared for accused, informed the Bench that Cato was in distressed circumstances, and had several children in a starving condition, that he had parted with all his belongings to buy food, and that he took the bicycle on the impulse of the moment. Accused was sentenced to six months hard labour. The sentence was suspended upon sureties being found."

Herbert, as he was mostly referred to, was often in the papers in NSW. His brother's messy divorce and many instances of being sued for damages to property and reputations.

Back in Launceston, whilst still married and living with Maria, he was well up in the sporting world. Vice Captain (at least) of a Launceston Football Club, and a star of the Launceston Cycling Club.

Overall, using the newspaper reports to look at the big picture, I would say we have here a 'larger than life' person.

On the other side - there is a record of 'Herbert' trying to enlist in the AIF sometime after 1915. The record series is of those who were rejected or who only served within Australia as depot troops or camp guards. He must have lied about his age as the index entry shows a DOB of 1870 in Hobart. This is a bit at cross-purposes with the statement of his nephew who said he was wounded in ww1. A copy of the record can be obtained from the National Archives. Series number MT1486/1, Control symbol CATO/HERBERT, Item title Cato, Herbert; born 1870, Hobart, Tas. Note that the birth date has been 'fudged' by 10 years.

Voter Enrolements

Research Notes

  • Research note 01: Julian Herbert Cato was born in Hobart on 15 Oct 1860 as Joseph Herbert Cato to William Cato (1819-1894) and his wife Rosetta Coggin (1824-1912) of 'Kemble', New Town. He was the sixth of ten children. His first cousin William Francis Cato is also pictured in the Family Album.

    On 21 Apr 1886 Julian, a lawyer's clerk, married Maria Sidebottom, the eldest daughter of William Sidebottom MHA, at the residence of the bride's parents, York Street, Launceston. Their three sons, Garnet, Ronald and Sidney, were born in Launceston between 1886 and 1890. JH Cato was the conductor of the Cuckoo Club, a musical society in Launceston. He sang in the Tasmanian Exhibition Choir in 1891-92 as a bass.

    Julian and Maria moved to Sydney and subsequently separated. Julian married Emily Lee in Sydney on 9 Dec 1899. They had six children between 1897 and 1909. By 1930 Julian, known as Herbert, was a tally clerk. He died under the name Joseph Herbert Cato in 1947 at Granville, NSW.

    Maria changed her name to Myra Cato and married Frank G Robson in Sydney in 1909. They moved to Canada with her youngest son Sidney Leith, and Myra Robson died at Thunder Bay in 1952.
    Carol Cato Nov 2005 & Marion Sargent May 2009.16

Children of Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato and Maria Sidebottom

Children of Joseph Herbert 'Julian" Cato and Emily Lee


  1. Digger - Tas BMD Digger databases on CD, Surname: CATO
    Given Names: JOSEPH HERBERT
    Event: Birth
    Father/Spouse Surname: WILLIAM
    Mother/Spouse Given Names: COGGIN ROSETTA
    Day: 15
    Month: 10
    Year: 1860
    Sex: M
    Spouse Age:
    Spouse Sex:
    Registration Place: HOBART
    Registration Number: 3816/1860
    Reference: RGD 33.
  2. BDM in Australia, Aust Vital Records 1788-1905, 1886/540.
  3. Digger - Tas BMD Digger databases on CD, Surname: CATO
    Given Names: JULIAN HERBERT
    Event: Marriage
    Father/Spouse Surname: SIDEBOTTOM
    Mother/Spouse Given Names: MARIA
    Day: 21
    Month: 4
    Year: 1886
    Age: Adult
    Sex: M
    Spouse Age: Adult
    Spouse Sex: F
    Registration Place: LAUNCESTON
    Registration Number: 540/1886
    Reference: RGD 37.
  4. Website Tasmania, Australia, Index to Marriage Notices in The Mercury, 1854-1962 (unknown url) "Julian Herbert Cato
    Spouse Name:      Maria Sidebottom
    Marriage Date:      27 Apr 1886
    Gender:      Male
    Publication Date:      1 May 1886."
  5. Digger - Tas BMD Digger databases on CD, Surname: CATO
    Given Names: WILLIAM
    Event: Death
    Father/Spouse Surname:
    Mother/Spouse Given Names:
    Day: 07
    Month: 10
    Year: 1894
    Age: 75
    Sex: M
    Spouse Age:
    Spouse Sex:
    Registration Place: HOBART
    Registration Number: 1376/1894
    Reference: RGD 35.
  6. Certificate or Original Parish Reg Entry, Extract from original records, NEW SOUTH WALES
    Births Deaths and marriages registration

    Registration number 7462/1899

    Date                    9th December 1899
    Place                    471 Pitt Street, Sydney

    Family Name               CATO
    Given Name(s)          Julian Herbert
    Occupation               Actor
    Residence               244 Elizabeth Street. Sydney
    Conjugal status          Divorced
    Place of Borth               Hobart, Tasmania
    Date of birth               not stated
    Age                    39
    Father's name               William CATO (deceased)
    Mother's maiden name     Rosetta COGGIN

    Family Name               LEE
    Given Name(s)          Emily
    Occupation               Milliner
    Residence               244 Elizabeth Street, Sydney
    Conjugal status          Spinster
    Place of Birth               Newcastle, NSW
    Date of birth               not stated
    Age                    24
    Father's name               Matthew LEE (deceased)
    Mother's maiden name     Margaret HUTCHINSON

    Celebrant               George HAY, Officiating Minister

    Rites                    Independent Presbyterian Church

    Witnesses               Edith Carolus
                        Ruth Cooper

    Registering Authority          W G H Williams, Registrar General, 12th December 1899.
  7. Aust War Memorial nominal, online
  8. Trove Digitised Newspapers, The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954) Tuesday 22 February 1927.
  9. Rosetta Cato, Deat certificate for Rosetta Cato.
  10. DB - NSW BDM on line, online
  11. International Genealogical Index (IGI), Name:     Leith Sunderland Cato
    Event Type:     Marriage
    Event Date:     06 Jan 1918
    Event Place:     Toronto, York, Ontario, Canada
    Age:     21
    Birth Year (Estimated):     1897
    Father's Name:     Herbert Cato
    Mother's Name:     Myra Sidebottom
    Spouse's Name:     Aline Gertrude Harris
    Spouse's Age:     24
    Spouse's Birth Year (Estimated):     1894
    Spouse's Father's Name:     John O Harris
    Spouse's Mother's Name:     Ida Worthy
    Page:     001062
    GS Film Number:     002148786
    Digital Folder Number:     005205866
    Image Number:     00135

    Citing this Record:
    "Ontario Marriages, 1869-1927," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 19 Aug 2014), Leith Sunderland Cato and Aline Gertrude Harris, 06 Jan 1918; citing registration 001062, Toronto, York, Ontario, Canada, Archives of Ontario, Toronto; FHL microfilm 002148786.
  12. Trove Digitised Newspapers, The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954) View title info Sat 16 Dec 1922 Page 12.
  13. Unknown translator, "NSW BDM."
  14. Letter, W S (Stan) CATO to Oscar Herbert Cato GREEN, 15/7/1948.
  15. Australian Voter Rolls 1901 - 1936, online
  16. Tasmanian International Exhibition, Launceston Family Album,