Project: Australian Convicts and First Settlers

Categories: Australia | Australian Convicts and First Settlers Project | Australia Genealogy Resources

Welcome to the Australian Convicts and Settlers Project!

This project exists to bring together WikiTreers interested in improving the profiles of the colonial European immigrants to Australia.

As a rough rule, we focus on the period of convict transportation up until it ended in 1868. Of particular interest, is the first few decades of convict transportation and the development of colonies.

The main aim is to increase the number of profiles of arrivals during this period and learn more about their subsequent lives.

We are also aware of the myriad of inter-connections between distant cousins that occur when a population moves from a small geographic area in one country and settles in another small geographic area in another.


Communicating with the Project

How to Join

Are you interested in the Australian Convicts and First Settlers Project?australian_convicts.gif

Additionally, you can ...

  • Ask Veronica or Gillian to award you the Australian Project Member badge.
  • Add the line [[Category:Australian Convicts and First Settlers Project]] to the text area of your profile page. This will add you to the list of participants on the category page.
  • Add your name to the list below, along with a note about what you're working on in this project right now.

Members can add this category to appear in our Member list Category:Australian Convicts Member.

Our Progress

Beside your name below, please keep track of what you're currently working on for this project. This is both for your own reference, and to aid collaboration amongst the project participants. If you are going to be temporarily inactive in the project (eg. on vacation), please note that here. Thanks!

  • David Champion - I am a great grandson of John Champion who arrived in Sydney on 14th February 1814 aboard the General Hewitt.
  • Bruce Kercher - an interest in convicts and law, and a family interest in Isaac Peyton, Susannah Harrison and Charles Hughes.
  • Callum Simms - interested in the backgrounds of free settlers, specifically de Arrieta and Spearing.
  • Leisa Kelly - interested in the family lives of convicts. Descended from Ann Leakey (Roslyn Castle) and John Murphy-Scully (Morley).
  • Terry Wright- Interested in all Convicts as I have a number of different convicts on my tree ,but very interested in Joseph Wright who came to Australia on the First Fleet and his wife Eleanor Gott who came to Australia on the Second Fleet
  • Graeme Rose - Interested in all Convicts. 12 Direct convict ancestors from England & Ireland. Some serious criminals but some for stealing a sheep or linen or watching a robbery. Once free some became outstanding citizens & others continued their criminal ways.
  • Michael McCook - Benjamin Thomas Hodgson and brother William Hodgson, both deported Leeds in the 1820's. Have letters and much research relating to subsequent lives
  • Meryl Naismith I am a direct descendant of 3 convicts. Patrick McNALLY arrived on the Surrey 1814. His wife and 3 children arrived as free on an accompanying ship. One daughter Eliza McNALLY had a child with another direct convict ancestor Albert WHITEHOUSE. He was refused permission to marry and died at Port Macquarie penal colony. The daughter of Albert and Eliza married Thomas BALLARD aka BOLLARD. Transported on the Blenheim
  • Irene Dillon - Interested in all Convicts, I have a large number on my tree. Particularly interested in the voyage over, the ships and the conditions on board those ships and in the hulks, also in the different ways they were treated. Currently updating profiles for Robert Briers and Lydia Jelley, have updated James Triffett, Johanna Burnes, John and Alice McKinley and Ann Orton. Many to come.
  • Veronica Williams - There are 8 convict profiles on wikitree that I hope to be able to assist in developing further. The first three relate to my own ancestry, being descended from Thomas Cassidy who was transported along with his two brothers, Philip Cassidy and Edward Cassidy on the Hercules II in 1830 for throwing their landlords horse into a quarry. There are still some mysteries to be unravelled about the life of Thomas and also what became of Edward who escaped in 1833 and his father Stephen Cassidy who was tried for the same crime, but imprisoned in Ireland rather than being transported due to his age. My husband is lucky enough to have an additional six convicts in his line and he must be somehow related to Paul Bech as they include Catherine Edwards, her husband William Yardley and son in law Richard Hayman, and John Herps. The remaining two being Alexander Hewitt and his wife Jane Starkey.
As part of my involvement in the Irish Roots project I am also adding convicts profiles to Wikitree of those convicts from Fermanagh who were involved in the 'Macken Fight' and transported to Australia on the Hercules II with Thomas and his brothers.
I am also working with the FTDNA Australian Convicts and FTDNA Australian Settlers DNA projects to add their genealogical and DNA data to WIkitree. Please refer to works in progress here for Wikitree Australian Convicts and Wikitree Australian Settlers.
  • Craig Smith - Descended from convicts Elizabeth Hemming, Thomas Densley and Luke Everitt aka William Andrews. Particularly interested in confirming Luke's true name and origins. Also interested in either confirming or disproving some of the "assumed" connections other family members have made over the years.
  • Matt Lohmeyer - I am researching the soldiers and guards of the 4th Regiment who came to Australia in the early 1830's, guarding convicts, as well as a number of well-established early convict roots.
  • Lyn Weston - I am a descendant of Ellen/Eleanor/Frazer/Frazer and William Frazer/Frazer who were both First Fleeter. Also David May who arrived here in 1838 on the 'Emma Eugenia'. Sorry to have butted in like this but it was all the tablet would allow me to do---or----I could do. If someone wants to shift me feel free.
  • Kerry Laughlin - I am new to Wikitree but have been doing genealogy for years now on Recently found a connection through my husband Matt Coombs back to Lawrence (Laurence) Gill after finding Terry Gill's Wikitree online. Also recently, my husband's DNA matched Veronica Williams's husbands DNA in Family Finder on I look forward to learning more about his family and in particular, his convict ancestry.
  • Leigh Hoolihan - I am descended from a number of early settlers of New South Wales and northern Queensland. My ancestors John Green and Anne Dillon are believed to have been convicts and (ignoring family gossip!) we are trying to prove if this is true (or not!). I am now methodically researching convicts and early settlers called John Green and Anne Dillon to see if I can narrow the choice down. Either way, they were living in Australia by 1840. Most of my great-great-grandparents were living in Australia by 1865.
  • Elayine McCallum - I am the 4x Great Granddaughter of convict Joseph Puckeridge. He was convicted of stealing cloth and sentenced to Australia. I'm sure there are more, I just have to find them :-)
  • Kathy Thompson Currently sorting out my direct line profiles. Descended from John Wood alias John Leach who was transported for life for stealing a watch, and arrived in 1813 on the Earl Spencer.
  • Kathleen Starr - I am descended from Samuel Sandall, Sarah Whaley and Michael Dooner.
  • Jeff Meurer - being a descendant of three Australian Convicts i am keen to expand and improve the Australian Convict project. I have added my ancestors to the project category.
  • Dale Gatherum-Goss - we have a number of convicts we have researched.
  • Kate Arnold - great, great granddaughter of the Irish convict Francis Muldoon transported to VDL aboard the Blenheim arriving in 1849. He seems to have a "very well documented" life ... which is rarely a good thing! Also interested in early South Australian free settlers Lynes whose daughter was the first white child born on Kangaroo Island, the adventurous but also very mysterious Deimel and his wife Cornelia and on the other side of the family the more prosperous and reputable Wimmera pioneer "Fred" Sudholz. I know there are a LOT of Sudholz' out there still.
  • Nigel Males - My great-great grandfather was William Males. He was convicted in Hertford and transported to Tasmania on the convict ship Henrietta in 1843. He married convict Eliza Masters in 1849 and later married another convict Susan White in 1856.
  • Evie Farrell - I am the descendant of a convict, Thomas Yarwood. He was transported to Australia on the Indefatigable in 1815 with his cousin or brother, William Yarwood.
  • John Hunter - When I couldn't find any convicts in my tree I searched my father-in-laws tree to find First and Third Fleeters scattered about. Researching those people, their reasons for deportation and their life in the new colony, has been a fascinating past-time. Some prospered, some didn't.
  • Caryn Horner My GGGrandfather was Frederick Timbrell a convict: Born 16 Nov 1810 in Lancashire UK - Died 7 Jun 1876 in Surry Hills NSW Australia. Transported to Australia on the "Asia" Ticket of Leave granted 17 Aug 1839.
  • J Gormly - I have a general research interest in convicts, and I also have a few in my and my partner's family tree. So I will take a stab at researching any convict, related or not. I have also studied convict history and specific research methods with the University of Tasmania. The recent convict I took 'under my wing' was William Walker. Indeed, the profile manager did not even know he was a convict!
  • Mary Bugg - So far, I have found around 14 convicts who are direct ancestors, including James Triffitt, most of whom either landed in or ended up in Tasmania (from Norfolk Island). I'm about to start a 2nd unit in Family History with the University of Tasmania, and hope to complete the two "Convict" units offered as part of the Diploma course in the next year or so.
  • Stuart Carmichael I have 4 convicts in my tree; I'm currently trying to make contact with descendants of John Ryan (Friendship 1788); Sarah Woolley (Neptune 1790); John Pearson (Ld Wellington 1814). Specifically I'm after someone who has completed an atDNA test and has uploaded the results to Gedmatch.
  • Davina Dodds I have two convicts already linked to my family Edgar Bisdee and his father James Bisdee convicted of grand larceny and sentenced to deportation to Fremantle. I am now trying to work on a link that seems like it might be, but I am not sure. I have William Dodds born in 1853 ??? and died in 1893 Happy Valley SA I think maybe I have found his father and mother, Tasmanian convicts Samuel Dodds and Sarah Gleeson as there is documents they married and had a child William September 2nd 1853, I just need to be able to connect those dots...
  • Marian Greinke Stephens I am currently entering my research to WikiTree for the following convicts -- William FRY 1806–1860 "John1" 1827; James PEARDON 1798-1860 "Neva" 1833; George PARTRIDGE 1814-1882 "Lord Lyndoch" 1831; Charles David LOADSMAN 1799–1881 "Neva" 1818; Catherine Mary RYAN 1807–1890 "Edward" 1829; Samuel E ADCROFT/HADCROFT/HEADCROFT 1816–1881 "Lloyds" 1837.
  • Jean Hollis I am descended from Joseph Hallam. My brother in law is descended from Ephraim Digby and George Ransley so I am particularly interested in the members of the notorious smuggling Aldington Gang of Kent, most of whom were transported to Van Diemen's Land aboard the Governor Ready in 1827.
  • Gil Wright I am currently working towards FirstFleet membership for my kids. My mother's family included the Smalls and free settles from Queensland (Auld). My father's family came from South Australia and it looks there might have been convicts married in as well but much later...
  • Anne Tichborne The Kangaroo Island, South Australia, Early Settlers Project is under way. We've already identified over a hundred Free Settlers whose first home in Australia was Kangaroo Island. Where possible we've connected them to their ship of arrival. Some of these people had huge families (one man had 22 children) and it's quite a task making sure they're all attached to the right parents.
  • Wayne Hicking I've discovered recently that my stepson's family Nathan Ball if fairly rife with convicts, so I think it's time I participated.
  • Bill Piper I am a great-great grandson of Henry Hanger who was transported in Moffat in 1836 and later settled in the Picton area of NSW. I have three other direct ancestors: Jane Lear (Morley), Margaret Maitland (Mary (3)) and James Giddings (Eliza (3)), all of whom ended up in Tasmania, plus a few interesting family members.
  • I am a descendant of John Nichols, First Fleet convict on the Scarborough. This is confirmed by an Ancestry DNA test. I have about 5 convicts of direct descent.
  • Michelle Baarsoe [Gottwald-26] I am a descendant of 16 Convicts I've just worked out to name a few of them Ann Forbes/Huxley, Thomas Huxley, Patrick Hand, Catherine Hatch/Hand, Robert S Martin, Joseph Craft, Charles K Conlan, Elizabeth Hand/Conlan I'm currently working on the Conlan line.
I am gradually working on the Field of Mars Catholic cemetery (a long time researching) and have found other Catholic convicts so let me know if I can help. The area of Mansfield was mainly convicts so there a lot buried there.

Project Pages

  • Famous Australian Convicts - A list of convicts who have profiles on wikitree who became well known in Australia for one reason or another.
  • Kangaroo Island Early Settlers Kangaroo Island was the first place of settlement for the new British Colony of South Australia. Our goal is to add all the earliest arrivals and first generation children to Wikitree, and tell something about their lives and experiences.

Category Pages

Related External websites

  • Tasmanian Convict Records - comprehensive index of all convicts transported to Tasmania and those who were convicted (through the convict system) in the colony.
  • Founders and Survivors - This site seeks to record and study the founding population of 73,000 men, women, and children who were transported to Tasmania.
  • Convict Records - This website allows you to search the British Convict transportation register for convicts transported to Australia between 1787-1867.
  • Australian Royalty website - a very impressive website documenting many trees of various convicts, with an impressive database of some 59000 individuals.
  • Claim a Convict has been relaunched as a tribute to its founder, Lesley Uebel - many convicts still to be added - can you add some of those missing convicts?
  • Convicts in Remote Australia - Did you know some of the early convicts were sent to the Northern Territory and were also in Western Australia as early as 1826? The book 'Distant Settlements: Convicts in Remote Australia' by Edward Street contains some fascinating information.

DNA Projects

  • Have you had your DNA tested? Make sure you consider joining our Wikitree DNA project.

This page was last modified 20:15, 7 April 2019. This page has been accessed 22,595 times.