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Mary Graham

Mary Graham, one of 325 convicts transported on the Royal Admiral, May 1792

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Mary Graham
Aliases: none
Gender: -

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1765
Occupation: -
Date of Death: -
Age: -

Life Span

Life span

Median life span was 61 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: Stealing
Convicted at: Middlesex Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Royal Admiral
Departure date: 30th May, 1791
Arrival date: 7th October, 1792
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 346 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 182 Old Bailey Proceedings -online version accessed, of July 1791 Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette - Thursday 17 May 1792 page 2:
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

Robin Sharkey on 6th December, 2016 wrote:

MARY GRAHAM was tried at the Old Bailey in July 1791 for stealing 2 silver tablespoons on the 14th of June valued at 20 s. the property of James Hamilton , Esq; the Earl of Clanbrassil in the kingdom of Ireland. He lived at Stanhope STReet, Mayfair.

Mary Graham had been at the house of Lord Clan Brassil on the evening of 13th June for about half an hour with a petition to Lady Clanbrassil

Lord Clanbrassil’s valet, James Asplin gave the following evidence:

I am valet to Lord Clanbrassil; I have seen the prisoner two or three times; on Tuesday she came; she related a very melancholy tale of herself; I told her I was excessively sorry; but, if she would call in the middle of the day, her Ladyship would relieve her.”

Perhaps the valet meant Monday, 13th June, not Tuesday.

Th footman said she appeared at the house on Monday 13th June about 9:30 in the morning and enquired for Mr Asplin. The footman “went down to call him”, the dining parlour,which was open, being on the left hand side of the street door. 

The footman let her in again at half past twelve that Monday 13th, presumably she turned up again just as the valet had suggested , in the middle of the day.  The footman and gave the following evidence “ … she asked if my Lady was within, and said a person of the name of Graham came for an answer to a petition; I said I would go and let her know, she was in her dressing-room; I went to tell her; and Lady Clanbrassil said she had written to Lady Hillsborough to inquire [Graham’s] character, and Lady Hillsborough sent answer she knew little of her, and she sent her down half-a-crown”.  It was about nine or ten minutes while he went upstairs and left mary Graham waiting downstairs.

Another servant gave evidence that he missed five silver spoons on Tuesday 14th June as he was going to lay the cloth.
Mary Graham took silver spoons to a silversmith that evening about five o’clock, with the crest of Lord Clanbrassil on them, offering to sell them. He asked her what she wanted t-for them bt she told him to weigh them.  The silversmith did not know the crest, and asked whose it was, whether it was her crest.  “She told me that she got them from the Marchioness of Buckingham; that she was a distant relation to her Ladyship, and received them as presents from her”.

Then the silversmith did this, as he obviously suspected her
“I asked her where she lived, and she gave me a right direction where she lived, in Little St. James’s-street; I asked her if she had any objection to my going with her to her lodgings; she said she had not; I said I would go with her; instead of which, I went out at the back door, and went to the place where she said she lodged, and inquired and found she did live there; and about six or seven days after, I found out to whom those spoons belonged; I went to the Earl of Clanbrassil’s house with the spoons, and shewed them to the servant that opened the door.”

There was an objection on the face of her indictment, because it was made out that the spoons were the property of James Hamilton Esq (whcih was Lord Clanbrassil’s name) when it should have been made out that they were the property of the Earl of Clanbrassil.

The judge told her that “however slight it may be, you ought to have, and you shall have, the benefit of it; therefore no sentence must be passed upon you till the next session, and then you will know the opinion of the Judges.”

So no decision was yet made, and she had to come back to he Court on 7th December. Presumably all that time she was languishing in Newgate Prison.

On 7th December, Mr. Baron PERRYN delivered the OPINION of the TWELVE JUDGES on her Case, which was reserved for their Decision:

“ …I believe eleven of the Judges attended, and they were all unanimously of opinion; the question being, Whether the prosecutor was properly described in this indictment or not? they were all of opinion that the description was proper, that it was laid in proper form.” He then went on to cite legal authorities for this. The basic resolution was that no “dignity of Ireland” i.e title Can give a man a higher title here than that of Esquire.

She was sentenced to 7 years’ transportation.

Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette - Thursday 17 May 1792 page 2:
“Friday, 54 transports, of whom five were women, were removed from Newgate on board a Lighter, to be conveyed to the Royal Admiral, lying at Gravesend, and bound for Botany Bay.
“It is hoped the above transports may be useful hands in the whale fishery of New South Wales.

Convict Changes History

Robin Sharkey on 6th December, 2016 made the following changes:

source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 182 Old Bailey Proceedings -online version accessed, of July 1791 Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette - Thursday 17 May 1792 page 2: (prev. Australian Jo

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