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Samuel Knowles, one of 400 convicts transported on the Moffatt, 07 November 1837
Name, Aliases & Gender
Birth, Occupation & Death
|Date of Birth:
|Date of Death:
life span was 59 years*
* Median life span based on contributions
Conviction & Transportation
Sentenced to Life
||Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 90, Class and Piece Number HO11/11, Page Number 202. Tasmanian Archives - convict records http://search.archives.tas.gov.au/ImageViewer/image_viewer.htm?CON31-1-25,332,158,L,46.
||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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Nancy Egan on 29th January, 2018 wrote:
He married in Adelaide, South Australia on 29th Dec 1851 and raised a large family and is buried at Amherst Cemetery, Victoria.
Nell Murphy on 29th January, 2018 wrote:
Samuel KNOWLES was convicted at Nottingham, England on 26 June 1837 for stealing a lamb. Previous convictions for stealing & assault. Life sentence. Transported to Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania), Australia per the ship ‘Moffatt’ arriving 1 April 1838. Ship Surgeon’s report: “quiet & orderly”.
Aged 20 yrs; single man; trade - a boatman; 5’6” height; fresh complexion; flaxon hair; light grey eyes; tattoos; rings on fingers. (ref. Convict description upon arrival in Colony)
Native place of birth: Mansfield, Nottingham, England. (ref. Convict record)
Colony of Van Diemen’s Land:
Assigned to work services.
Several records of misconduct and various punishments.
Last notation on record is 1847.
No notation, in these records, of him leaving or a death.
1 Dec 1866 Mercury newspaper article reveals more about his life: “The Talbot Leader observes :
The petition to the Governor of Tasmania,
praying for a free pardon to be granted to Samuel
Knowles, is now lying at the various stores and
hotels throughout the district. People voluntarily enter these places and attach the signatures, thus evincing in a practical manner the widespread regret that is felt for Knowles’s misfortunes. We understand that it is the intention of Knowles to proceed to Melbourne this week, and lay his case before the law officers of Victoria, with a view to obtain their aid in prosecuting his appeal to the merciful consideration oi the Governor of Tas-
mania. Knowles’s case is certainly a very hard
one, and is well deserving the widespread feeling
of regret it has, evoked. The petition referred to as being in circulation for signatures sets forth the following facts in connection with Knowles’s offence and punishment:
” That the said Samuel Knowles, otherwise Dunn,
was, in the year 1837, in England, convicted of,
and sentenced to transportation for life in the
colony of Tasmania, for the crime of stealing
one lamb. That the said Samuel Knowles was
to be, and at the time of such sentence and transportation, but a youth under sixteen years of age.
That the said Samuel Knowles, after his arrival
in said colony, has behaved himself with great
propriety, so much so that he obtained certain
privileges, and was much trusted and respected,
and now for a period of five year before leaving
the colony, is hereinbefore mentioned, mate, and
afterwards master, of a ship trading between the
colonies, and that with the knowledge of the
authorities of Tasmania aforesaid. That being
aware, as we believe, that many prisoners of the
Crown had left Tasmania for the other colonies
without the leave of the Crown, the said Samuel
Knowles was induced to do the same, and left the
said colony in the year 1849, and came to this
colony. That the said Samuel Knowles left the
said colony of Tasmania as mate of the sloop Re-
solution, and cleared out in his own name and without any concealment or fraud. That since his
arrival in this colony he has invariably conducted himself in every relation of life in a most upright and creditable manner, so much so that he obtained, and still retains the respect and esteem of all classes of our community for his integrity, sobriety, and fair dealing, and especially for his charity ; insomuch also that he has on several occasions been requested to fill and occupy public positions of honor and trust. That since his arrival here he has married, and has now a wife and a family of eight children solely dependent on his exertions, the eldest not more than thirteen years, and the youngest not more than one week.”
12 Dec 1866 Argus newspaper has an article of a Samuel Knowles appearing in Court on account of being an escaped convict from Tasmania. He was stated to be a farmer from Talbot, Victoria. (ref. trove.nla.gov.au)
These articles also confirm his use of the alias name “Dunn”.
Convict Changes History
Nancy Egan on 29th January, 2018 made the following changes:
alias1: Samuel Dunn, gender: m
Nell Murphy on 29th January, 2018 made the following changes:
source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 90, Class and Piece Number HO11/11, Page Number 202. Tasmanian Archives - convict records http://search.archives.tas.gov.au/ImageViewer/image_viewer.htm?CON31-1-25,332,158,L,46. (prev. Australian J