John and Margaret Dollan's gravestone in the Barbadoes Street Cemetery in Christchurch records the deaths of 10 of their children. Nine died under the age of five, and the first-born, Sarah, only lived to the age of 10. However two of the Dollan children did have long lives – both John William and Henry Neill lived into their eighties. Gravestones are important genealogical evidence and highlight the different circumstances facing families in the 19th century, such as the large number of children per family and the high rate of child mortality from epidemics and accidents.
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