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James Baker

James Baker, one of 112 convicts transported on the Proteus, 12 April 1831

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: James Baker
Aliases: none
Gender: -

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: -
Occupation: -
Date of Death: -
Age: -

Life Span

Life span

Median life span was 52 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 14 years

Crime: -
Convicted at: Wilts. Special Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: 14 years
Ship: Proteus
Departure date: 12th April, 1831
Arrival date: 3rd August, 1831
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 111 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 89, Class and Piece Number HO11/8, Page Number 86
Source description: This record is one of the entries in the British convict transportation registers 1787-1867 database compiled by State Library of Queensland from British Home Office (HO) records which are available on microfilm as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project.

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Community Contributions

Maureen Withey on 10th November, 2019 wrote:

James Baker was convicted at the Wiltshire Special Commission, which was set up during January 1831, to deal swiftly with those agricultural workers who were arrested after the “Swing Riots”. During November and early December 1830, large crowds of impoverished agricultural workers gathered at night to break threshing-machines, which they saw as taking away their already, very low paid work, reduced further because the land owners were reducing the wages of the men due to decreases in the value of the corn they were producing. They demanded token sums of one or two sovereigns of the landowners if they left the farms.

Wiltshire Special Commission.
Jas. Baker and Robt. Baker were convicted of having robbed R. Phillips of 15s.
The Attorney-General begged the Court to be merciful to them, on account of their wives and families. - Judgement of death recorded.
Salisbury Journal, 10 Jan 1830

Tasmanian Record - Convict Indent, https://stors.tas.gov.au/CON14-1-3$init=CON14-1-3p25 https://stors.tas.gov.au/CON14-1-3$init=CON14-1-3p26

James Baker, No 1535, age 43, ploughman, Convicted for 14 years, 27 Dec 1830, native place, Sherborne, Berks. married, 4 children, could read and write, wife Elizth. At N.P. 1 s (sister) Sarah ux. Jno. Stout, a Labr. at N.P. Stated this offence, Demanding a Sovereign in the mob of rioters.

(Native place was, in fact, Shalbourne, a village on the Wiltshire/Berkshire border, not Sherborne - mistake probably made when details taken down , due to lack of familiarity with the Wiltshire accent.)

Maureen Withey on 12th November, 2019 wrote:

National Archives – Petition record - HO 17/46/25 - Date -1831 Jan 19.


1 collective petition (22 people, from Shelbourne, Wiltshire including Minister) on behalf of James Baker and Robert Baker, convicted at the Wiltshire Special Assizes in December 1830, for robbery. There is also a note by Henry Elston, incumbent of Tidcombe [Wiltshire] certifying that James Baker is a regular and constant attendant at his church in Tidcombe for the last 10 years and supports a mitigation of the sentence dated 20 January 1831. Grounds for clemency: previous good character - honest and industrious ‘up to the period of the tumultuous and riotous meetings of the labouring poor in this parish and neighbourhood’; the Incumbent of Tidcombe certifies that James Baker is in regular attendance at church. Initial sentence: death, sentence commuted to 14 years transportation, held in gaol at Shipton, Salisbury, Wiltshire. Annotated: nil. GP 25.

This record was discovered and printed on ConvictRecords.com.au