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William Hancock

William Hancock, one of 184 convicts transported on the Nithsdale, 26 December 1829

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: William Hancock
Aliases: none
Gender: -

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 10th June, 1798
Occupation: Bricklayer
Date of Death: 16th April, 1840
Age: 41 years

Life Span

Life span

Median life span was 55 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: Stealing chickens
Convicted at: Middlesex Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Nithsdale
Departure date: 26th December, 1829
Arrival date: 12th May, 1830
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 183 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 89, Class and Piece Number HO11/7, Page Number 271 (138)
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

Anonymous on 24th May, 2011 wrote:

William Henry HANCOCK Born 10th Jun 1798,  City of London, England
Baptised 15th July 1798, St George The Martyr, Southwark, London
Occupation Bricklayer
Parents George Hancock & Sarah Ann Archer
Married 19/9/1796 St Mary at Lambeth, Surrey, Middlesex, England
London, England, Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812   about William Henry Hancock
Name: William Henry Hancock
Baptism Date: 15 Jul 1798
Parish: St George The Martyr     (St George the Martyr Southwark, Borough High St, Southwark, City of London SE1 1JA, UK)
County: Surrey
Borough: Southwark         (Only 2 miles from Islington)
Parent(s): George Hancock,
                      Sarah Hancock
Record Type: Christening
Original Christening document includes his Date of Birth - 10/6/1798 - Clay Hancock 15/11/2010
Wm. Henry Hancock
England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975
birth: 10 Jun 1798
residence: Southwark, Surrey, England
parents: George Hancock, Sarah Hancock
record title: England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975
name: Wm. Henry Hancock
gender: Male
baptism/christening date: 15 Jul 1798
baptism/christening place: St. George the Martyr’s, Southwark, Surrey, England
birth date: 10 Jun 1798
father’s name: George Hancock
mother’s name: Sarah Hancock
indexing project (batch) number: C00853-8
system origin: England-EASy
source film number: 394839
and Following Days
(Third Day)

382. WILLIAM HANCOCK and JOHN HANCOCK were indicted for stealing, on the 5th of January, 32 live game fowls, price 3l., the property of William Robinson.
Mr Clarkson conducted the prosecution.

Thomas Skill. I was in the employ of Mr. William Robinson, of Holloway. On Sunday, the 4th of January, we had thirty-three fowls; I saw them that day in the yard, but did not see them locked up - I had known them for about seven months: on the morning of the 5th, thirty-two were gone; they were marked with a cut on the right wing - I have since seen the one that was left behind, and I saw some fowls at the watch-house on the evening of the 5th, but I could not say that I knew them; the wings of Mr. Robinson’s fowls were cut - I cut them, and the wings of the fowls I saw were cut in the same way: I believe some of them were a good deal like them.

John Morgan. I am an officer of Islington. I heard of the robbery at Mr. Robinson’s; there was a reward offered for the fowls: I knew the prisoners, and about twelve o’clock on the Monday I went to John Hancock’s house, in White
Conduit-fields - I had before that been to Mr. Robinson’s premises, and found the lock had been forced off the hen-house door - it appeared it had been done with a three pronged fork; I saw footmarks on the ground of more than one or two persons - one was a very large footmark, and the welt of the foot was worn away in one part. I met John Hancock coming out of his house, with a basket, and said to him, “What have you there?” he said, “Some fowls, which are my property, and I am going to sell them;” I asked him to admit me into his house, to see if there were any more; he said he could not, for the door was shut - his wife had got the key, and no one was there: I said I should force the door - he said at my peril; Mr. Mayor, who was with me, pushed the door, and it opened very easily; they were folding- doors, and not bolted - John had four fowls in his basket, which were picked; I found four fowls not picked, in a room in the house, and in another room I found William Hancock, sitting picking a fowl, and some more fowls, not picked, below in a fire-place, under some straw which a dog lay on - I found a sack, which had feathers in it, and it was bloody; I took these shoes from the feet of William, and this piece of welt of his shoe exactly corresponds with the mark made in the ground - it was a red soil, but soft; some of the footsteps were in a direction from Mr. Robinson’s premises, towards White Conduit-fields, and some the other way, which appeared to be coming and going; there were some other footsteps there; I showed the same fowls to Selman the same day, and to Jones on the Friday following - they identified them; there was a cut upon the right wings: I went after the examination to examine the fowls at Hancock’s, when I found some which had been cut in the right wing, and some in the left, but they appeared to be cut rather cleaner.

Court. Q. What is the distance between the prosecutor’s and John Hancock’s? A. I should think a mile and a quarter; this large shoe, which I took off William, tallies in all respects in length and breadth, and in the mark of this piece likewise - there was no mark of nails, because the ground was rather too wet; I found some other footmarks, which corresponded with the size of John Hancock’s shoes; the prisoners are both bricklayers: I know there was a reward, in which I expect to participate.

Prisoner John Hancock. He said the little shoes did not match at all, only the big ones.  Witness.  No - I said I could not swear to them.

Prisoner William Hancock. The fowls belonged to us; we asked him to take the live fowls to the office, but he did not. Witness. Because I considered that the fowls which were running around knew the premises.

William Mayor. I am an officer. I went with Morgan to examine the prosecutor’s premises; what Morgan has stated is correct; We went to John Hancock’s, and saw him coming out with a basket, and a cloth over it, with some fowls in it - we then went into the house, and found some fowls; here is one of them which had not been picked.

Samuel Jones. I am an auctioneer, and am son-in-law to Mr. Robinson - he had thirty-three fowls in his premises; I was acquainted with them: this is one of them - I know it by a particular mark here; it was bred on the premises: I locked up the hen-house door myself, about four o’clock in the afternoon of the 4th, and saw the whole of the fowls there; when I went in it happened that dinner was announced, and I did not put the key in its usual place, but put it into my pocket, and it was there till ten o’clock at night - the premises are surrounded with a paling, about five feet six inches high.

Court. Q. Can you swear positively to this fowl?  A.  Yes - I sometimes took them their food; Skill did not live in the house - he used to feed them, and knew them: the cut in the wings was his own cutting.

Thomas Skill re-examined. I am out-door gardener to Mr Robinson; I have examined the cut on the wing of this fowl - I cannot say whether Mr Robinson had such a fowl; I never took notice of any particular fowl, so as to know it again; he had fowls something like it: I cannot say that this wing is my cutting, as I did it in the dark, with a large old pair of sheep-shears, about a fortnight before they were stolen; I have been listening to what the officers have said, and I believe it is true, as I heard it before - there were footmarks of more than one person, but I did not take particular notice; I went with Morgan and Mayor when they measured the footmarks, and everything matched as he says.

George Selman. I know this fowl - I had it in Mr. Robinson’s loft for a good bit, while it was a chicken: I am sure it belonged to Mr. Robinson: it is all white except the rump.

John Hancock’s Defence.   I had twenty-five at first, and killed nine, to get myself a pair of shoes; I picked four to take to a gentleman to sell - I have about a dozen at home; I have kept fowls all my life: the landlord gave me warning because I kept so many; he said they picked the garden, and that was why I cut their wings; some I have had for two years, and some for one year.
Transported for Seven Years.

Imprisoned on the Prison Hulk, “Retribution” awaiting Transportation to New South Wales.
UK, Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849   about William Hancock
Name: William Hancock No 7844
Age: 31
Estimated birth year: abt 1798
Brought from Newgate 7/2/1829
Date Received: 7 Feb 1829
Ship: Retribution
Place Moored: Woolwich
Date Convicted: 15 Jan 1829
Place Convicted: Middlesex               ?????
How & When Disposed of : NSW 18/12/1829
Offence: Stg (stealing) 32 Fowls
Sentence: 7 years
TICKET of LEAVE   Granted at Bathurst, NSW
New South Wales, Australia, Tickets of Leave, 1824-1867
about William Hancock
Name: William Hancock
Birth Year: 1798
Origin: London
Ticket Date: 8 Nov 1834
Immigration Year: 1830
Vessel: Nithsdale

New South Wales, Australia, Certificates of Freedom, 1827-1867
about William Hancock
3rd June 1836   No 36/479
Name: William Hancock
Birth Year: 1797
Native Place: London, England
Vessel: Nithsdale

DEATH /BURIAL -  Windsor Hospital, Windsor, New South Wales 16/7/1840
Joy Murrin Transcription - Early Church Record Burial held at NSW Registry of Births Deaths & Marriages
Number 771 V24A
Name William Hancock
Abode Windsor Hospital
Date of Death 16 April 1840
Date of Burial 17 April 1840
Age 42
Quality or Profession Free
Minister Henry T Stiles
Religion Church of England
Parish St Matthew, Windsor
County Cumberland
Name of Ship ‘Nithsdale’

Clay Hancock on 2nd December, 2012 wrote:

Jointly Tried & Convicted at the Old Bailey for the Theft of 32 live game fowls on 15/1/1829, with his younger brother John Stevens Hancock. Both found guilty & transported for 7 years.

Convict Changes History

Clay Hancock on 2nd December, 2012 made the following changes:

date of birth 10th June, 1798, date of death 16th April, 1840, occupation, crime

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