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David Dunsmore

David Dunsmore, one of 204 convicts transported on the Phoenix, 29 March 1824

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: David Dunsmore
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1799
Occupation: -
Date of Death: 14th February, 1855
Age: 56 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 58 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 14 years

Crime: Receiving stolen property
Convicted at: Glasgow Court of Justiciary
Sentence term: 14 years
Ship: Phoenix
Departure date: 29th March, 1824
Arrival date: 21st July, 1824
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 203 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 88, Class and Piece Number HO11/5, Page Number 136
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

Heather Stevens on 5th March, 2020 wrote:

In 1823 David Dunsmore was convicted with his wife Ann (nee Hunter) for ‘resetting’ stolen goods. They were transported to Tasmania and later lived at Bathurst, NSW.
Marriage 6 Aug 1819 Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland: ‘David Dunsmore, Fish Merch’t, in Glasgow & Ann Hunter residing in Paisley. Married 6th August by Mr Jonathan Ranken one of the Ministers of Paisley’. [Scotlandspeople: DUNSMORE DAVID ANN HUNTER/FR3350 (FR3350) 06/08/1819 644/1 290 109 Glasgow]
They had a daughter, Anne born about 1821 Glasgow.
David Dunsmore and his wife Ann (nee Hunter) were charged with the crime of ‘resetting’ stolen goods, and stood trial in the Glasgow Court of Justiciary on 29 September 1823. They were both found guilty and sentenced to fourteen years transportation. ‘Reset of theft’, under Scotch law, is the receiving and keeping of stolen goods knowing them to be stolen, with a design of feloniously retaining them from the real owner.
A newspaper report has the following: At the Glasgow Circuit Court, on Monday last, David Wylie, William Johnston, and John Toy, were accused of housebreaking and theft. The two first were accused of being habit and repute thieves, and David Dunsmore, Ann Hunter, or Dunsmore, and James Ferguson, were accused of resetting the stolen property. It appeared that the thieves had possession of the house of Mr James Herbert Rodgers, situated in Gordon Street, during the absence of the family in the country, from 19th September to the 19th October, 1822, and that they carried off during that period, an immense quantity of valuable articles. Ferguson was outlawed for not appearing, the other prisoners were found guilty, and sentenced as follows:—Wylie and Johnston to be executed on the 12th November, Dunsmore and his wife to be transported for fourteen years, and Toy to be confined eighteen months at hard labour in Bridewell.[Durham County Advertiser, Saturday 04 October 1823]
15 Nov 1823 David was admitted to the hulk ‘Retribution’, moored at Woolwich, (received from Edinburgh. Date Convicted: 29 Sep 1823, Place Convicted: Glasgow, of the crime ‘Reset of theft’). [Ancestry.com: UK, Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849, Retribution hulk register]
David Dunsmore left Portsmouth, England on 29 March 1824 on the ship “Phoenix” and arrived in Hobart, Van Diemens Land on 21 July 1824. His wife Ann Dunsmore with their daughter Ann, left England on 12 October 1824 and arrived in Tasmania on 8 February 1825 on the convict ship “Henry”.
6 May 1824 Treated by the surgeon on the ship: Symptoms nearly the same as those of another convict Sanders (who had similar symptoms to other convicts) ‘however considerable burning heat of palms of the hands and soles of the feet’. Treated with purgatives and bleeding and discharged on 8th May.[Ancestry.com: UK, Royal Navy Medical Journals, 1817-1857]
In Hobart, we know from the convict musters that he was working for Mrs Smith in 1826.
On 1 August 1827 he was charged with breaking and entering, but the charge was dismissed. [Tasmanian Archives, Libraries Tasmania’s Online collection, convict conduct book http://search.archives.tas.gov.au/ImageViewer/image_viewer.htm?CON31-1-9,290,121,F,60]
They had three children born Hobart:Robert b. abt 1827, David b. 1 Dec 1832, Isabella b.31 Aug 1834.
On 23 February 1838 he was given a Conditional Pardon [Convict conduct book]
In September he and his wife and and three children arrived Sydney NSW on the barque “Lord William Beninck“ from Hobart 16th September[Shipping Intelligence’, The Tasmanian 21 Sep 1838]
Death 12 February 1855  Bathurst, [NSW BDM index: 125/1855 V1855125 107 DUNSHORE DAVID AGE 56]
Obituary: At the residence of his son-in-law, Mr. James Hayes, William street, Bathurst, on the 12th February, Mr. David Dunsmore, after a short and painful illness, aged 56 years deeply regretted by a numerous family.[Bathurst free press and mining journal 17 Feb 1855]
Note: Some trees on Ancestry.com have his birth 1799 Lochwinnoch, Renfrew, parents William Dunsmore and Janet Brodie (from an Ancestry hint). However it is unlikely to be him as there is a David Dunsmore, b Lochwinnoch abt 1801 with wife and children in 1851 and 1861 still living at Lochwinnoch.

Convict Changes History

Heather Stevens on 5th March, 2020 made the following changes:

date of birth: 1799 (prev. 0000), date of death: 14th February, 1855 (prev. 0000), gender: m, crime

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