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John Lowrie

John Lowrie, one of 306 convicts transported on the Fortune and Alexander, January 1806

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: John Lowrie
Aliases: John Laurie, John Lawry, John Lourie, John Lowrey
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1784
Occupation: -
Date of Death: 1873
Age: 89 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 51 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: Theft of linen
Convicted at: Middlesex Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Fortune and Alexander
Departure date: January, 1806
Arrival date: 12th July, 1806
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 307 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 375 (187)
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

Robert Perry on 18th June, 2012 wrote:

Married Sarah Bockerah in 1810 and had many children. Made lots of money in Sydney and then got caught up in more dodgy dealings and lost it again. Moved to New Zealand and ended up running the government ferry service in Kawhia and Karaka.

Maureen Withey on 24th April, 2020 wrote:

Old Bailey Proceedings Online (http://www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 24 April 2020), April 1804, trial of JOHN LOWRIE THOMAS LEWIS (t18040411-74).

JOHN LOWRIE, THOMAS LEWIS, Theft > theft from a specified place, 11th April 1804.
297. JOHN LOWRIE and THOMAS LEWIS were indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 26th of December , one pair of sheets, value 20 s. seven table-cloths, value 30 s. three napkins, value 3 s. four books, value 5 s. a child’s satin mantle, value 7 s. four blankets, value 15 s. four yards of thread lace, value 3 s. and a lace handkerchief, value 2 s. the property of Chloe Gambire , in the dwelling-house of Elizabeth Morrison .
ANN JONES sworn. - I live in Exeter-street, Sloane-street, Hans-place, Chelsea ; I was employed by Mrs. Gambire to let her house; I let it to Mrs. Morrison, at ten guineas a month, and for six months certain; I let it on the 5th of December.
Q. When did you see Mrs. Morrison? - A. On the 3d; I made the bargain with a man, on the account of Mrs. Morrison, and on the 4th a Mr. Francis came with Mrs. Morrison to take the lodgings; she said she liked the house very well; they were to come on the 5th; on the 5th of December, they came and took possession of the house; it was late in the evening when they came in, and about eleven o’clock in the evening John Lowrie came into the house.
Q. Did he come there as a servant? - A. They did not say what he came for; he came to live there; they told me I might go out of the house that night; I did not chuse; I stopped in the house all that night; I got up on the 6th of December; I left the house for that day; I left them in possession.
Q. When did you see Thomas Lewis ? - A. Not till the 22d of January.
Q. You do not know whether he resided in the house at all? - A. No.
Q. Were these things mentioned in the indictment let with the house? - A. They were left in the house, but not for her use; they were in trunks in the front garret, locked up safe, but not let to Mrs. Morrison; they are the property of Mrs. Gambire.
Q. When were these articles missing? - A. On Sunday, the 22d of January, I had a suspicion; they promised me rent and paid me nothing; on Sunday evening I went up stairs, and found the bed-rooms were both locked; I came down and went into the kitchen; I saw a little boy and girl there; this was about seven in the evening; they came home at half-past ten o’clock, and went away directly, when they heard I was in the house; I staid in the house all night; I went up stairs, and the bed-rooms were open; I missed a pier-glass; I went into the garrets; I tried to open the trunks; the keys would not unlock them; when I had them in my possession they would unlock them; the night came and I sent for a smith; I found every thing gone that was of any consequence, our of the two trunks and a box; he was forced to break all the locks of them open.
Q. Were the locks in a proper state before these people came into the house? - A. Yes, they were, and all the things were safe.
Q. Did you keep in possession of the house after that time? - A. No.
Q. Did you cause any body to be taken up? - A. Yes, Mrs. Morrison, on Monday night, and took her to Bow-street; on Tuesday she was committed to Tothill-fields; Sir Richard Ford discharged her; I took up Lowrie on Wednesday; he was committed to Coldbath-fields.
Q. Where did you find him? - A. Opposite the debtor’s door of Newgate; I saw him taken up; I had the Officer with me.
Q. Did you tell him what you took him up for? - A. Yes; he said nothing.
Q. When did you take up Lewis? - A. On the Wednesday.
Q. You say that you never saw Lewis before the 22d of January? - A. No.
Q. Where did you find Lewis? - A. On the the debtors’ side of Newgate.
Q. How came you to charge Lewis? - A. There were duplicates found upon him, and he was in the house.
Q. Did Lewis say that he lived there, or only came there occasionally? - A. I cannot say; he slept there that night.
Cross-examined by Mr. Gurney. Q. You were present when Lewis was searched? - A. Yes.
Q. Mrs. Morrison was taken up on Monday, the 23d of January, and on Wednesday you took Lowrie and Lewis; they were examined before Sir Richard Ford ; Mrs. Morrison agreed to pay for all she had taken; that promise was not fulfilled? - A. No.
Q. And then the two lads were committed and Mrs. Morrison discharged? - A. Yes.
Q. Between the 4th or 5th of December to the 22d, Mrs. Morrison was completely mistress of the house? - A. She was.
Q. What had passed between you and her, respecting these trunks, was not in the presence of either of these lads? - A. It was not.
Court. Q. Did Mrs. Morrison agree to pay you for the things taken out of the trunks, as well as the furniture taken out of the house? - A. Yes.
Q. Do you suppose that she had a controuling power over the things in the trunk? - A. No; I did not let her the use of these things.
WILLIAM WILKINSON sworn. - I am a plumber and glazier: On the 23d of January, as I was going to my work, I was desired to call upon Mrs. Jones; I went to the house where Mrs. Morrison lived: I saw Mrs. Jones was very much alarmed; the prisoner Lowrie came in; he went down into the kitchen and spoke to Mrs. Morrison, and a short time after that he went into the privy; I suspected that he had thrown the duplicates of the property there; and at ten o’clock that morning I lowered a candle down into the privy; I saw some duplicates, which I have in my pocket, and three keys and a shawl; I delivered them to the Officer; he gave them to me to produce; soon after he had been in the privy, he said he was a servant to a gentleman in the country; when I had told him I thought he was concerned in the robbery, he wanted to go out of the house.
Q. Did you prevent him? - A. I did; he opened the door and I shut it, and put my back against the door.
Mr. Gurney. Q. You found the duplicates? - A. Yes; and the key of the street door, the key of the from room up one pair of stairs, and the key of the garret where the boxes were.
Q. Did you find the key that would open those boxes where the things were kept? - A. No.
Q. You had no candle down in the privy before he was there? - A. No.
Q. It was open for the use of any person in the house? - A. Yes.
Q. You were about leaving the house? - A. Yes.
Q. You told my Lord that when he wanted to quit the house, you prevented him? - A. Yes; I went back the same day.
Q. Did you find Lowrie when you came back? - A. No, he was gone.
THOMAS STOREY sworn. - I am a grocer and cheesemonger in Hans-place: On Monday, the 23d of January, I was sent for to No. 56, Hans-place; when I came there, Mrs. Jones said she was robbed; she wished me to go up stairs with her; the two prisoners were not there when I went; Lowrie came in about eleven o’clock; Wilkinson had been there previous to Lowrie coming in, and the smith’s man; Mrs. Jones went up stairs and missed a number of things out of the trunks in the garret; we first examined the hinges, and then we found the locks of the trunks had been violently stained; they were nearly empty; we came down stairs, and at eleven o’clock Lowrie came in; I told him in the kitchen that he was suspected of being concerned in robbing the house; he wished to go out of the door, and said he would not be detained by me, or Mr. Wilkinson, or any body else.
Q. Before you let him go out of the house, had he been backwards? - A. Yes; soon after I had told him I thought he was a confederate, he went backward; he slipped out of the house unknown to me; I staid in the house after Mr. Wilkinson went.
Q. For what purpose did you stay after Wilkinson was gone? - A. On purpose to keep him in; he slipped out unobserved by me; he said he was a servant of Mrs. Morrison’s; he was innocent of all that could be brought against him; after the privy was searched, we took up the seat, and tookup the shawl and these duplicates; there are seventeen of them now; there was a key of the street door, the key of the front room up one pair of stairs, and the key of the garret.
- MULKESTER sworn. - I am a servant of Messrs. Rochford, in Jermyn-street; they are pawnbrokers; here are eleven duplicates of our shop; one is a table-cloth; I do not know whether I took it in or one of the lads; a pair of sheets and four napkins; two table-cloths and two books; I took in these at different times, of the prisoner Lowrie; he pawned them in the name of Lee; a pair of sheets and two books; I lent upon the pair of sheets 18 s. they were pawned the 30th of December, 1803; two table-cloths I lent 13 s. on; they were pledged together; I lent 18 d. on the books; I am sure he is the man that pledged these articles.
JOSEPH CLIFTON sworn. - I am shopman to Mr. Cameron, in the Strand: On the 9th of January I took in a sheet for 10 s. of Lowrie, in the name of John Cole ; on the 13th of January, four handkerchiefs, three towels, and a remnant of silk, for 7 s. of Lowrie; on the 18th of January, four napkins and a child’s satin mantle; I took it in of Lowrie, in the name of Cole.
JAMES ROBINSON sworn. - I am a servant to Mr. Dobree, pawnbroker, Charing-cross: I produce four yards of lace, pawned by Lewis, in the name of Thomas Smith ; he said he was the son of Ann Smith ; I am sure he is the lad; I lent him 4 s. on it.
RICHARD WHEATLEY sworn. - I produce a duplicate for a blanket: I am a servant to a pawnbroker in Cranbourn-street: I took the blanket of Lewis; he pledged it in the name of Charles Smith , for his mother, Sarah Smith .
(The articles identified by Mrs. Jones to be the property of Mrs. Gambire.)
Lowrie’s defence. Whatever I pledged was given me by Mrs. Morrison, and for what I pledged I gave her the money and the duplicates; I always understood them to be her property.
Lewis’s defence. I pledged these things for Mrs. Morrison; Lowrie staid in the house after I went out.
Lowrie, GUILTY, aged 20,
Of larceny only .
Transported for seven years .
Second Middlesex Jury, before Mr. Common Serjeant.


Colonial Secretary Index.
LAURIE, John. Per “Fortune”, 1806; overseer; publican; merchant
1809 Jun 10 -Received rations from the Hawkesbury Stores (Reel 6040; 9/2673 p.53)
1809 Dec 29 - On list of all grants and leases of town allotments registered in the Colonial Secretary’s Office (Fiche 3268; 9/2731 p.236)
1810 Jan 30 - Memorial for confirmation of lease (Fiche 3006; 4/1822 No.185)
1810 Feb 14 - Petition for renewal of pardon (Fiche 3166; 4/1847 p.136)
1810 Dec 20 - Re property of Richard Atkins, former Judge Advocate, delivered to Laurie from “Indian” (Reel 6002; 4/3490D p.47)
1810 Dec 24 - Re loss on an investment due to non-receipt of payment of goods supplied to Mr Atkin’s daughter (Reel 6042; 4/1725 pp.370-1)
1811 Jan 29 - To Andrew Barclay, Captain of the “Indian”, re delivery of remainder of Richard Atkins’ investment to Laurie (Reel 6002; 4/3490D p.94)
1812 Dec 4-1821 May 31 - Juror at inquests on Lawrence Christianson, Isabella Johnson, Sheak Peroo, John Roberts & William Smith held at Sydney (Reel 6021; 4/1819 pp.87, 343-4, 519, 573-4, 647)
1813 Aug 7 - On list of persons holding licences for sale of wine and spirituous liquors (Reel 6038; SZ758 pp.405-7)
1815 Apr 1-1817 Apr 19 - On lists of persons licensed as publicans; for 1815, 1816 and 1817 at Sydney (Reel 6038; SZ759 pp.54, 193, 341)
1815 Nov 4 - Paid from the Police Fund for sugar supplied for use of troops on board the “Kangaroo”; listed as Lourie (Reel 6038; SZ759 p.152)
1818 Jan 24 - On list of persons for whom leases ready for delivery (Reel 6038; SZ759 p.429)
1819 Feb 15 - On list of applicants for renewal of spirit licences in Sydney (Reel 6006; 4/3499 p.318)
1819 Feb 26 - On return of writs issued from Supreme Court and Governor’s Court against William Gore (Reel 6020; 2/8130 p.131)
1819 Mar 3 - Petition to Governor’s Court for sequestration order against William Gore (Reel 6020; 2/8130 pp.107-12)
1819 Nov 6 - Evidence of, in case of abduction against R L Murray (Reel 6048; 4/1743 pp.93-6)
1819 Dec 3 - Recommending Hugh Morrison for mitigation of sentence (Fiche 3198; 4/1859 p.63)
1822 Dec 27-1825 Nov 24 - On pay lists of constables employed at Sydney; also as Lowrey and Lowrie (Reel 6029, 4/7016A pp.11-216, 4/7016B pp.6-208 & 4/7016C pp.23-385; Reel 6030, 4/7016D pp.21-401; Reel 6061, 4/1779 pp.154c, 163c & 4/1780 pp.207c, 222d)

John Lowrie was sent to Moreton Bay penal settlement.
Moreton Bay Convict Records

John Lawrie, per Fortune 1, tried at Middx. G.D. 11 Apr 1804., 7 years, Clerk. Colonial Sentence:
Crim Court, Sydney, 21 Feb 1826, Stealing a boat, 7 years. To Sydney 1 May 1828.
Description: John Laurie, native of London, age 42, 5 ft 7 ¾. Sallow comp, dark hair grey eyes.
John Lawrie, found guilty of stealing a boat, was brought up. Previous to passing the sentence, the attention of his Honor was directed to the circumstance of one of the witnesses called for the prosecution having been so intoxicated that he was not able to appear before the Court ; and it was to be feared that such intoxication had been produced by the machinations of one of the parties who gave his testimony and was much interested in the issue.  Another witness, the son of the defendant having being inadvertently told that his evidence would not be required had he remained in Court and when wanted was consequently inadmissible. The testimony of these persons would have given a different appearance to the case in the most material point. The affidavits were put in that the Court might have an opportunity of judging whether there were grounds for the Court making such representation in a higher quarter as might have the effect of of mitigating the sentence. Mr. Justice Stephen intimated that the statement he had heard made should have its due weight in extenuation of the sentence it was his duty to pass, which was, that he be transported to a penal settlement for seven years.
The Australian, 23 Feb 1826.

In a letter dated 3 April 1828, from The Governor to the Commandant of Moreton Bay, to be sent per the “Lucy Ann”,  paragraph 8 : Re pardon for John Lourie or Laurie per “Fortune” - to return by this vessel. (Moreton Bay Letters – Colonial Secretary Docs.)

Maureen Withey on 14th September, 2020 wrote:

Letters of Colonial Secretary re Moreton Bay.
Letter, sent to His Excellency Governor Darling, dated July 1827,  from Sarah Laurie, No 88 Kent Street, Sydney, wife of John Laurie at Moreton Bay, requesting he be assigned to her – outlines her family situation and asks for assistance.
Note re above
From R. D. , dated 20 July 1827, Put away - “I informed him at Moreton Bay I should not interfere.”

1828 Census Index.

John Lawrie, age 42, F.S. Fortune, 1808, 7 years, protestant, Mariner, Cumberland St., Sydney.
Sarah Lawrie, age 36,
Amelia Lawrie, age 18.

Maureen Withey on 14th September, 2020 wrote:

1828 Census Index. Children of John Lawrie, Cumberland Street, Sydney.
John Lawrie, age 14, C.F. Fortune 1808, protestant,
Elizabeth, 15.
Clarissa, 12.
Martha, 10,
Sarah, 7.
Maria, 5.
Francis, 3.

Convict Changes History

Robert Perry on 18th June, 2012 made the following changes:

date of birth 1784-00-00, date of death 1873-00-00, gender m

Maureen Withey on 24th April, 2020 made the following changes:

alias1: John Laurie, alias2: John Lawry, alias3: John Lourie, alias4: John Lowrey

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