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Convict Ship Royal Admiral 1792


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(Convicts and passengers from this ship only)

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Select from the Links below to find information about Convict Ships arriving in New South Wales, Norfolk Island and Van Diemen's Land between the years 1788 and 1850

J -K L M N - O P - Q R S T - V W - Y

Embarked: 299 men; 49 women
Voyage: 130 days
Deaths 12
Surgeon's Journal: no
Previous vessel: Pitt arrived in NSW 14 February 1792
Next vessel: Kitty arrived 18 November 1792
Master Essex Henry Bond.
Surgeon Richard Alley
Follow the Female Convict Ship Trail
The London Times reported that on the morning of Friday 27th May 1792, one hundred and two convicts were sent off from Newgate, put on a lighter and sent down the river in preparation for being transported to New South Wales (2)

The Royal Admiral departed England on 30 May 1792 and arrived in Port Jackson on 7th October 1792. Ten men and two women died on the passage out; four children were born and one male convict escaped at the Cape of Good Hope. Seventy-two men, eleven women and five children were landed sick.

According to the Cumberland Argus it was the first occasion that prisoners were taken directly from the convict ship to Parramatta without being disembarked at Sydney.

Famous female convict Mary Reibey, James Kelly later of Maitland and Robert Whitmore later of Patterson Plains arrived on the Royal Admiral. Sailor and adventurer George Bruce arrived as a convict on the Royal Admiral
Prisoners of the Royal Admiral taken directly from the ship to Parramatta without being disembarked at Sydney beforehand - Cumberland Argus 25 October 1899
Convict Artist Thomas Watling who had originally sailed in the Pitt escaped at Cape Town and was captured by the Dutch, imprisoned and taken on board the Royal Admiral in 1792. During his first months in the colony Watling continued a series of letters which he had begun at Cape Town; as Letters from an Exile at Botany-Bay to his Aunt in Dumfries they were published in Penrith, Scotland, probably in 1794.(1)

David Collins wrote of surgeon Richard Alley........ "There arrived in the Royal Admiral as a superintendent charged with the care of the convicts, Mr. Richard Alley, who formerly belonged to the Lady Juliana transport, in quality of surgeon, in the memorable voyage of that ship to this colony; a voyage that could never be thought on by an inhabitant of it without exciting a most painful sensation. This gentleman went to England in the snow with Captain Hunter, whither the comforts of long voyages seemed to accompany him. Immediately on his arrival there, he was appointed by the commissioners of the navy to come out in the Royal Admiral as surgeon and superintendent of the convicts embarked in that ship, with an allowance of twelve shillings and sixpence per diem until his arrival in England, exclusive of his half pay as surgeon of the navy"(6)

A master miller (Thomas Allen) and master carpenter (William Peat) as well as settler John Jameson all arrived on the Royal Admiral.....

Historical Records of New South Wales -
Governor Phillip to Under Secretary King, Sydney 11th October 1792,
Sir, I have received your letter, dated the 15th May by the Royal Admiral inclosing the copy of an agreement made with the master carpenter and master miller. The settler Jameson with his family arrived in this ship. The Royal Admiral arrived here the 7th instant. When that ship left the Cape of Good Hope, which was on the 30th August last the Kitty had not then arrived there.(3)

John Jameson was appointed Superintendent of convicts at Norfolk Island replacing Andrew Hume who had arrived on the Guardian in 1790. (4)

George Thompson also came free on the Royal Admiral. An extract from his journal concerning working conditions of the convicts at Toongabbie was published in the British Critic and gives an indication of how the female convicts may have been employed at this time when the colony was just four years old and accommodation and employment at the Female Factory was still years away.....

The following extract from the journal of G. Thompson, who sailed in 1792, and whose veracity Mr. Dyer does not question, will enable us to form some opinion of the situation of the convicts. ' About four miles from this place (Parramatta) is another settlement, Toongabby, where the greatest number of convicts are, and work very hard (there is also a good crop of corn standing, and promises well) : their hours are work are from five in the morning till eleven, they then leave off till two in the afternoon, and work from that time till fun set. They are allowed no breakfast hour, because they have seldom any thing to eat."" At night they are placed in a hut, perhaps 14, 16, or 18 together (with one woman, whose duty is to keep it clean, and provide victuals for the men while at work), without the comforts of either bed or blankets, unless they take them from the ship they came out in, or are rich enough to purchase them when they come on shore.(5)

Mary Springate and the following convicts all arrived on the Royal Admiral. Mary and her infant daughter died in Sydney while still on board the vessel in October 1792.
Samuel Sutherland died on 8th October 1792.
George Jones died in October 1792;
John Wallis died November 1792,
Nicholas Viles /Vales died in December 1792.
Samuel Flatt arrived as a convict on the Royal Admiral. He died in January 1793;
Joseph Savage died in June 1793;
Margaret Wilson in October 1794;
William Fowkes died in April 1797;
Seletta Guest died in September 1810 aged 45;
Elizabeth Harding died in April 1793 - were all interred in the Old Sydney Burial Ground

The Royal Admiral departed Port Jackson bound for China in November 1796

Notes & Links:

1). National Archives - Royal Admiral - Contents: Built by Barnard, launched 1777, 3 decks, 4in bottom, 919 tons. Principal Managing Owners: 1-4 Sir Richard Hotham, 5-6 Thomas Larkins, 7-8 John Pascall Larkins. Essex Henry Bond took over as Master of the Royal Admiral on the 5th voyage in 1789..... (5) 1789/90 China. Capt Essex Henry Bond. Downs 17 Apr 1790 - 26 Aug Whampoa - 31 Jan 1791 Second Bar - 9 Apr Cape - 28 Apr St Helena - 26 Jun Downs. (6) 1791/2 New South Wales and China. Capt Essex Henry Bond. Torbay 30 May 1792 - 9 Aug Cape - 7 Oct Port Jackson - 14 Jan 1793 Whampoa - 18 Mar Bocca Tigris - 16 Jun St Helena - 21 Aug Downs. (7) 1793/4 Bengal and Madras.

2). Read Thomas Watling's biography at the Dumfries Museum site

3). Women and children of the Royal Admiral 1792 - Cathy Dunn

4). Hunter Valley convicts/settlers arriving on the Royal Admiral in 1792

5). Portrait of the children of George Bond of Ditchleys, father of Essex Henry Bond.

6). Ann Ball a soldier's wife is listed in the 1816 Muster as having arrived free on the Royal Admiral

7). John Chilton arrived as a convict on the Royal Admiral. In October 1805 he was found guilty of having returned from Transportation. Select The Proceedings of the Old Bailey to find out more about John Chilton

8). Convict Ships arriving in 1792 - Pitt, Royal Admiral and Kitty

9). Colonial Events 1792

10). Settlers and Return of Land Cultivation 1792    

11). Henry Oliver arrived free on the Royal Admiral (CSI)


(1) Australian Dictionary of Biography Online - Thomas Watling

(2) London Times 28 May 1792

(3) Historical Records of NSW, Vol. 1, part 2, p. 665

(4) Australian Dictionary of Biography Online - John Jamieson

(5) The British Critic, Volumes 3-4, p.440

(6) Collins, David., An Account of the English Colony in New South Wales, Vol. 1,

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