Further research has revealed that Mary Ann Edwards was not a descendant of James Tucker.
The handwriting on a civil marriage register was difficult to read, and was recorded as 'Tucker' as well as a different, correct name.
I only discovered this after realising there were two entries under the same reference number.
I will leave the incorrect information below to demonstrate the twists and turns, thrills and spills, involved in family history research.
31 August 2013
Yesterday I found my first convict ancestor.
He was James Tucker, the maternal grandfather of my maternal grandmother, Mary Ann Edwards, who was the school teacher at Breelong before the one who was murdered by Aborigines.
I found his marriage record in the church records on microfilm in my local library.
James Tucker arrived in New South Wales on the Princess Royal in 1822.
At the time of his marriage on 28 February 1828, he was working as an assigned servant to John Dulhunty at Parramatta [Source: 1828 Census of New South Wales].
He married Mary Ann Bruce, aged 20 and born in the colony, who was also a servant.
The 1828 Census lists a James Tucker Jnr, 9 months, who was their child.
James, 23, and Mary Ann, 20, were married by banns, and with the permission of the Governor (Bourke), at St John's Church of England, Parramatta, by the Reverend Samuel Marsden.
According to the convict records held by the Queensland State Library, James Tucker was convicted at the Gloucester Assizes and sentenced to 7 years transportation on 3 April 1822.
James and Mary Ann Tucker were the parents of Sarah Tucker who married James Edwards and they were the parents of my paternal grandmother, Mary Ann Edwards.
There is a convict woman who may have been Mary Ann's mother (grandmother who had a daughter, Elizabeth), Elizabeth Bruce who, according to the Tasmanian State Archives record, arrived on the Lady Penrhyn in 1803.
But from what I understand, the Lady Penrhyn was one of six convict transport ships belonging to the First Fleet which arrived in Sydney Cove in January 1788.
There is a remark in the TSA record 'to NSW 1788'.
If this is the case, then my ancestry goes right back to the earliest days of the colony.
The Queensland State Library convicts database says that Elizabeth Bruce was one of 262 convicts transported on the Lady Penrhyn, Scarborough and Alexander, ships of the First Fleet that left England in January 1787.
She had been convicted at Middlesex Gaol Delivery for 7 years on 10 January 1787.