Search This Blog

Loading...

Thursday, March 8, 2012

CONVICT ANCESTRY PLOT THICKENS

CORRECTION
Further research has revealed I am not descended from Elizabeth Bruce, nor James and Mary Ann Tucker.
A mistake on the NSW BDM register caused by difficulty reading handwriting on a marriage record led to this error.
I have since found two other convicts I am descended from, but on my mother's side of the family, not my father's.
As this post has attracted a lot of viewers, I will leave it here.
Pamela Mawbey
31 August 2013
*
I've now discovered that my First Fleet convict ancestor is not Elizabeth Bruce because she married John Anderson at St Philip's Church of England, Sydney, in March 1788.
This event, that occurred two months after the couple's arrival in the penal colony, was done under the authority of His Excellency, Governor Philip.
*
There were two male convicts with the name 'John Anderson' on the First Fleet.
One on the Scarborough was convicted at the Old Bailey on 26 May 1784 and sentenced to 7 years for stealing three tablecloths and assault with a knife.
The other, on the Charlotte, was convicted at Exeter, Devon on 20 March 1786 and sentenced to 7 years for stealing one handkerchief, pounds 5/3/-, and other goods from a dwelling.
*
The baptism on 23 March 1790 of an Elizabeth M Bruce is recorded in the Church of England baptismal records.
Parents are given as Robert Bruce and Elizabeth Haylock.
*
The letter 'M' of baby Elizabeth's name, according to the baptismal record, stood for 'Mason'.
According the History Australia 'Convict Stockade' website, there were no convicts with the surname 'Haylock' on the First or Second Fleets.
But there was an Elizabeth Mason on the First Fleet transport, Friendship.
She stole a leather purse containing 15 gold guineas and was convicted at Gloucester on 23 March 1785.
A death sentence was commuted to 14 years transportation.
*
So where does the name 'Haylock' come from?
Had she been married to a 'Mason' when she was convicted and then reverted to her maiden name in the penal colony?
*
There is no marriage record of a Elizabeth Haylock to a Robert Bruce.
*
I finally found convict Robert Bruce on the History Australia 'Convict Stockade' website.
He was convicted at Exeter, Devon, on 21 May 1784 of escaping from custody and sentenced to death, commuted to 7 years transportation.
Bruce was transported on the Charlotte a First Fleet convict transport ship.
Ancestry.com revealed an earlier conviction at Winchester, England in July 1783 where he was sentenced to 7 years.
He may have 'escaped from custody' in relation to this crime.