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Convict Ship
Coromandel 1804

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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

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Embarked 200 men

Voyage 154 days
Deaths 0
Surgeon's Journal - No
Tons: 522
Previous vessel: Calcutta to Port Philip

Previous vessel: Rolla arrived 12 May 1803
Next vessel: Experiment arrived 12 June 1804
Captain George Blakey
Captain John Robinson/Robertson

In June 1803 the Morning Chronicle reported the arrival of the Coromandel back in England from China and Port Jackson.....

Yesterday advice was received at the India House of the safe arrival in the Downs of the ship Coromandel from China, with a valuable cargo on board on account of the East India Company. The Coromandel sailed from Canton in January in company with the ship Hercules, which vessel she parted with off the Western Islands, and is hourly expected to arrive. (1)

Soon after this ship's carpenters would have begun re-fitting the ship ready for the transportation of convicts.   The men to be embarked on the Coromandel in 1803 came from districts throughout England such as Warwick, Lancaster, Middlesex, Surry, Hants, Nottingham, Somersetshire and Wiltshire.  

Some of those held on the Retribution hulk at Woolwich were transferred to the Coromandel on 6th October 1803.

Prisoners held on the Captivity hulk were transferred on 20th October 1803.....Three men, Samuel Harris John Harmon and Cotliffe Spiller had been tried at Castle Taunton on 25th March 1803 and were admitted to the Captivity hulk on 24th June 1803 and transferred from the Captivity to the Coromandel on 20th October 1803. Two men Thomas Davis and John Baydon were returned to the Captivity hulk on 20th October 1803, possibly being too ill to make the voyage.   

The Coromandel was the next vessel to leave England with convicts for New South Wales after the departure of the Glatton in September 1802. The Calcutta had departed England in February 1803 however was bound for Port Phillip with convicts.  The Coromandel was reported to be at Portsmouth on 26 October and departed England 4th December 1803.  

Captain John Robinson died on the passage while off St. Salvador and Captain George Blakey took over the position.

The Coromandel arrived in Port Jackson on 7th May 1804.

The Guard included Ensign Draffen and Ensign Cressy with 30 non-commissioned Officers and Privates of NSW Corps. Two hundred prisoners were transported on the Coromandel and all survived the voyage. According to the Sydney Gazette, the detachment of soldiers and the prisoners were all landed in a state of good health - "as has ever been the case in the ships belonging to the Hurrys, and to Reeves and Green. "

In correspondence from Governor King to Under Secretary Sullivan dated 15 May 1804, the assignment/place of some of the convicts is revealed {Extract}:

The Coromandel arrived here the 7th instant, with all her convicts in a high state of health and fit for immediate labour, most part of whom were sent to the public agricultural settlement to mix with the labourers at that place, who are mostly Irish. I have also sent twenty Englishmen to mix with those at the Coal Harbour, from whence we have received some cargoes of coals and cedar for building vessels etc.  

In October 1804 other convicts from the ship were sent to Port Dalrymple with Lieut-Col Patterson to found a settlement there.

Two complete salt pans for the use of Government arrived on the Coromandel. They were landed at the Hospital Wharf and later sent by the Integrity to Newcastle where some very fine salt was being produced by February 1805. 

The Coromandel departed Port Jackson bound for China via Norfolk Island on 10th July 1804. Charles Beal Powell was intending to depart on her.


Notes and Links:  

1). Hunter Valley convicts/passengers/military personnel arriving on the Coromandel in 1804  

2). In 1810 the following people who had arrived on the Coromandel received their Certificates of Freedom being restored to all the Rights of Free Subjects in consequence of their terms of transportation being expired...Robert Cooper, Benjamin Woody, Alexander Mason, Christopher Airy, Francis Pendergrass, Edward Flaherty, John Hillman, James Pass, John Davis, William Williams, Thomas Brown, Charles Lee and Thomas Bemas.  

3). John Grant arrived as a convict on the Coromandel. The State Library of Victoria Catalogue contains the following information about him: Biographical/Historical note: Convict. Grant protested against the convict system and its officials in his "Bond of Union" of October 1805 although he had himself been granted a ticket-of-leave. This criticism led him to be sentenced to five years hard labour on Norfolk and Philip Islands. Eventually he was granted a full pardon by Governor Macquarie and returned to England in 1811. He was well-educated and while in Australia wrote a number of poems. Contents/Summary: 1) Documents 1769-1803, including financial statements and indenture of apprenticeship to his uncle, Edward Grant, and petitions after his conviction in 1803. 2) Letters 1803-10, to his mother and sister Matilda, describing the voyage on the Coromandel, his acquaintances Major George Johnston, Judge Richard Atkins, Charles Bishop and Sir Henry Hayes, and later involvement with Governors King, Bligh and Macquarie. There is also correspondence with Robert Campbell while John Grant was on Norfolk Island and a copy of his "Bond of Union". 3) Five poems written by John Grant between 1804 and 1805 while he was at Parramatta and Norfolk Island. 5) Notebook kept Jan. 31-May 1809 on his return to Sydney from Norfolk Island.  

4). Convicts Benjamin Davis, George Mitchell and Richard Horner and John Swan were among the prisoners who arrived on the Coromandel.  

5). Convict William Smith attempted to make his escape from the colony by secreting himself on the Coromandel however he was found and sent to the penal settlement at Newcastle.  

6). The following convicts have been identified in the Hunter Valley region:  

Name Convicted at Location NSW
James Camm Kent 1803 Newcastle
John Cresswell/Criswell Hertford 1802 Maitland/Merton
Benjamin Davis Warwick 1802 Wallis Plains/Newcastle
John Grant Middlesex 1803 Newcastle
Richard Horner Surrey 1803 Newcastle
John Jones Middlesex 1803 Newcastle
George Mitchell Sussex 1803 Newcastle/ Wallis Plains
James Nowlan Middlesex 1803 Wallis Plains
William Ogle Middlesex 1802 Sydney
Thomas Pedlar/Padley ? Newcastle
John Reynolds Middlesex 1802 Patterson's Plains
John Swan Kent 1803 Patterson's Plains
John Thompson Middlesex 1803 Newcastle
William/John Vickers Middlesex 1802 Newcastle
George Watts Gloucester 1803 Newcastle



(1) Morning Chronicle 9 June 1803      



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