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Margaret Coulter

** community contributed record **

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Margaret Coulter
Aliases: Coultar
Gender: f

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1774
Occupation: Servant
Date of Death: 22nd February, 1863
Age: 89 years

Life Span

Life span

Female median life span was 56 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: Stealing a watch
Convicted at: Ireland, Down
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Elizabeth
Departure date: 26th July, 1818
Arrival date: 19th November, 1818
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 100 other convicts


Primary source: Irish Convict Database, by Peter Mayberry.
Source description:

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Community Contributions

Maureen Withey on 4th July, 2020 wrote:

Irish Convict Database.
Margaret Coulter, age 44, per Elizabeth I (2) 1818, tried at Down 1817, 7 years. DOB 1774, servant.

Maureen Withey on 4th July, 2020 wrote:

Margaret Coulter came to NSW with her son, probably aged about 4. She married John Bentley/ Bately/ Battaley in 1821, and spent the remainder of her life married to him, until her death just a few days after his, 22nd February 1863.
In their old age, Margaret’s son John Neill, (Mr O’ Neil), lived with them and was able to support them.  Newspaper reports at the time were not quite accurate as regards dates and the ship John came out to New South Wales on, slightly exaggerating his age!

For a lot more information about John, read this article:
Article: Finding Three John Bentleys by Michael Flynn, published in Descent.
NSW 1828 census at Liverpool.
John Bently, age 57, F.S. per Wm & Ann, 1788, 7 years, sawyer, protestant.
Margaret Bently, age 53, F.S. per Elizabeth 1818, 7 years, protestant.
John Neill, age 14, C.F. Elizabeth 1818, protestant. John Bently signed his mark X.

Colonial Secretary Index.

1821 Sep 30, Oct 5 - Re permission to marry at Liverpool (Reel 6008; 4/3504 p.409)
Marriage at Liverpool of John Bately and Margaret Coultar, 1821.

There are living at Marulan, in this colony, two persons, husband and wife, aged respectively 111 and 107 years, The old man is stepfather to Mr. O’Neil, publican and wheelwright, at Marulan, and the old woman is his second wife. The former has entered upon his 112th year, and the latter upon her I08th. They both reside with Mr. O’Neill, and have done so for many years, They are extremely feeble and bedridden, but are in possession of both sight and hearing,
They were able to move about until very lately, and formerly were extremely active in their habits. The old lady attempts to speak when she is addressed, but cannot make herself understood by
strangers. Her utterance is so thick and inarticulate as to be little more than a few unmeaning sounds. The old man, however, although the oldest by four years,  and usually lying in an apparently unconscious state, rouses himself occasionally, and can then speak so as to be easily understood. On the occasion of the visit to him a few days since of a gentleman who has known him for many years, the old man, when his arm was lifted by a person in attendance, to show the condition to which it was wasted, suddenly remarked -” That was an arm once,” and quickly relapsed into his usual state. The old couple are well cared for by Mr. O’Neil, who, fortunately, is in a position to be able to afford them support in their extreme old age. The old man arrived by the first fleet in 1788, and has, consequently, been seventy-five years in the colony.
The Empire (Sydney) Feb 11 1863.

On the 19th instant, at Marulan, Mr. JOHN BENTLEY, in the 112th year of his age.
On the 22nd instant, at Marulan, Mrs. MARGARET BENTLEY, in the 107th year of her age.
The Goulburn Herald.

The Marulan Centenarians
He has ever since I knew him, (sixteen years) been remarkably clear in his memory. About twenty minutes before he died, he drank a little warm wine and water, which he conveyed to his own lips. He appears to have slept gradually away. The end of his life, and the beginning of the one he has, we trust, entered upon, could not, I think, be marked. His surviving but dying partner, is hardly, if at all, conscious of his departure from her.
I have but just returned from committing his mortal remains to their kindred earth, ashes, dust
and never have I had more comfort in a funeral than in this of my dear departed brother
buried at Marulan. The plate on the coffin was a sermon: ” John Bentley, aged 112 years.” I must say also, that never at Marulan was the service of the burial of the dead more reverently attended.  All seemed impressed, not hat on at the grave, not a whisper there or in the church - all as it should be in the presence of God, and at the gate of the grave.  The responses were audibly and reverently made; and there was a very large attendance of parishioners and friends. “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord: even so saith the spirit for they rest from their labors.”
Jolhn Bentley came out to this colony in this colony in the first fleet, in the ship Scarborough, Captain Marshall, at the same time as Captain Phillip, first Governor of the colony. This was in 1788.
His poor old wife, Margaret, is now at the point of death. She, I understand, was nine years junior
to her husband. They lived together in married life for forty years, and will lie together in the same grave; and be buried within a day or two of each other.
She came from Belfast, and was mother of three children at the time of the rebellion in Ireland.
February 21st, 1863.

Penny-Lyn Beale on 22nd September, 2021 wrote:

1817 - New South Wales, Australia Convict Ship Muster Rolls and Related Records.
Age;  41
Offence; Stealing a Watch

Convict Changes History

Maureen Withey on 4th July, 2020 made the following changes:

convicted at, term: 7 years, voyage, source: Irish Convict Database, by Peter Mayberry. (prev. ), firstname: Margaret, surname: Coulter, alias1: , alias2: , alias3: , alias4: , date of birth: 0000, date of death: 0000, gender: f, occupation, crime

Maureen Withey on 4th July, 2020 made the following changes:

alias1: Coultar, date of birth: 1774 (prev. 0000), date of death: 22nd February, 1863 (prev. 0000)

Penny-Lyn Beale on 22nd September, 2021 made the following changes:


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