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John Lovell

John Lovell, one of 300 convicts transported on the Lady Palmira [Palmyra], 04 March 1846

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: John Lovell
Aliases: none
Gender: -

Birth, Occupation & Death

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

Life Span

Life span

Median life span was 52 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: -
Convicted at: Middlesex. Clerkenwell General Sessions
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Palmyra
Departure date: 4th March, 1846
Arrival date: 22nd August, 1846
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 310 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 92, Class and Piece Number HO11/15, Page Number 42
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 2nd August, 2011 wrote:

John became a bushranger. He also used my ggranfather’s name when he was arrested, they were both convicts on the Palmyra 1846. Here are the details from a newspaper of the time, interesting read I think.

From the Courier newspaper, Hobart, Thursday 10 March 1859


For the last three years a prisoner of the Crown, named John Lovell, has been at large in the Oatlands and Great Swanport districts, leading a fugitive life, ‘bailing up’ shepherds, stealing cattle and sheep, and committing all kinds of plunder, but which he had gained the notorious reputation of being a ‘terror’ to the settlers in the wildest regions of the two rural divisions above mentioned. In the early part of 1857 this lawless desperado was charged with cattle-stealing, while in possession of a ‘ticket-of-leave.’ The offence was clearly established against him, and he was fully committed, at the Police Court, Evandale, for trial at the Supreme Court, Launceston. On proceeding to that town under police escort, he succeeded in escaping from the constables, and for the lengthened period of three years has eluded detection. Since his escape he appears to have lived a vagabond career, carefully, however, avoiding the keenest scent of an active rural constabulary. He is a tall man, of great muscular power, and is said to be very swift of locomotion. His features are rather forbidding and downcast, presenting the idea of a man who would scruple at no means to gratify his plundering propensities. Mr. C.D.C. Kidd, the newly-appointed chief officer of the Oatlands constabulary, hearing from head-quarters that such a dangerous character was roaming abroad in the vicinity of the Spring Bay and Oatlands districts, set out, as an undaunted detective, to the probable hiding place of Lovell, and after travelling, in company of Constable Nalty, a distance of twenty miles by moonlight, arrived at the point which separates the Spring Bay from the Oatlands district, by day-break, and was fortunate enough to pounce upon the fellow ere he had time to shake off the drowsiness of his nocturnal repose. From the description received of Lovell, Mr. Kidd at once told him he was in custody. Most strenuously did Lovell protest that that was not his name, but that his real cognomen "Francis Freer, a free man, and an immigrant." Mr. Kidd was, however, too incredulous to give credence to so plausible a tale, and proceeded to handcuff the would-be "immigrant." Lovell was not to be rendered thus powerless without a struggle, for he most strongly resisted having his wrists ornamented by a pair of handcuffs. With the assistance of Constable Nalty, the prisoner was finally secured, and handcuffed to the stirrup-iron of Mr. Kidd’s horse, and in that position was marched into Oatlands, where he arrived at mid- day on Sunday week, and was safely lodged in Gaol. The prisoner was brought up before the Police Magistrate, and charged on oath by Mr. Kidd with having committed divers felonies and misdemeanors. On being asked his name, the prisoner strongly maintained that it was Francis Freer, albeit amid many changes of countenance, and that he arrived in this colony by the steamer Black Swan, from Melbourne. On being further asked at what port that steam vessel came to, after a moment’s hesitation he replied ‘Hobart Town.’ The Police Magistrate remanded the prisoner with the view of making inquiry as to the truth or otherwise of this statement. Lovell was again had before the Bench on Thursday last, when Constable Nalty deposed that he knew the prisoner to be John Lovell; and that he had known him in several services in the Great Swanport district. In the meantime a warrant had been forwarded from that district, by Chief District Constable Watson for Lovell’s apprehension upon a charge of sheep-stealing, and upon the application of Chief District Constable Kidd, the prisoner was remanded to Swansea for examination upon that charge, to which place he was escorted by Constables White and Nalty on Friday last. Considering to what a state of insecurity and alarm the country districts have been subjected by the protracted prowlings of the unhappy bushrangers, whose haunts in the trackless forests of this island were so often, almost, beyond the reach of human ken, and who have so recently paid the penalty of their crimes by the forfeiture of their lives to the offended laws of their country, - we think that great praise is due to Mr. Kidd for the sagacity and promptitude which he has evinced in the capture of such a bold, daring, and dangerous character as John Lovell. The very fact of a man like him, schooled in the perpetration of all sorts of depredations, being at large, might, form the nucleus of a gang of robbers akin to that which has so long terrified the peaceable denizens of the country districts, but which, we rejoice to know, has been, by a vigilant and zealous rural police force, effectually broken up.”
End of quoted article. (Grant J Woodbridge, August 2011, gjwoodbridge@gmail.com)

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