Born 1818 Kilkenny, Ireland
Died 6 April 1892 Ballarat
Buried Ballaarat Old Cemetery (E22.214.171.124)
Anastasia Hayes was born around 1818 at Kilkenny, Ireland, the daughter of Richard Butler and Ellen (nee Baron). She married Timothy Hayes and emigrated with him and their five children to Australia arriving per the Mobile in October 1852. The family lived in a tent on the gold fields of Eureka where in 1854 Anastasia taught at St Alipius Catholic school. Their daughter Ellen was baptised at St Alipius 3 July 1854 at which time her father was described as a gold miner. The sponsors to her baptism were the Reverend Matthew Downing and Bridget Farrell.
Anastasia quickly gained a reputation as a ‘firebrand’. She attended Lalor when his arm was amputated in Fr Smyth’s house, and threw the arm down a shaft. Johannes Gregorius supposedly later recovered it for burial. Late last century, after Anastasia’s death, the following was published: “Afterwards I saw many of the wounded, and I did all that lay in my power to alleviate their sufferings. The sight was one that touched me very much and I shall never forget it. Many of the poor fellows were besmeared with blood and writhing in agony from some wound.” Anastasia died at her son’s residence in Ballarat on 6 April 1892, aged 74 years and is buried at the Ballaarat Old Cemetery (E126.96.36.199). Anastasia was said to have sewn the Eureka Flag, and was the teacher at St Alipius in 1854.
Anastasia Hayes, along with Patrick Gannon, was sponsor to the baptism of John Gannon baptised at St Alipius on 11 July 1854. John was the son of Anne (Kelly) and James Gannon. The Gannon family attended St Alipius where Anastasia taught. Emma Jane (Haydn) and John Lake had a son born in Ballarat in 1854 and baptised at St Alipius Catholic Chapel on 26 September 1854 and one of the sponsors was also Anastasia Hayes.