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Jean Mcdougall

Jean McDougall, one of 169 convicts transported on the Elizabeth and Henry, 14 September 1846

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Jean Mcdougall
Aliases: Nicholson (alias)
Gender: f

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1823
Occupation: Needlewoman
Date of Death: 1902
Age: 79 years

Life Span

Life span

Female median life span was 53 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: Stealing money
Convicted at: Scotland Glasgow Court of Justiciary
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Elizabeth and Henry
Departure date: 14th September, 1846
Arrival date: 4th January, 1847
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 170 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 92, Class and Piece Number HO11/15, Page Number 117 (60)
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

Margaret Weston on 18th June, 2020 wrote:


Found as Jane Nicholson in 1841 Census living at 90 High Street
Nicholson Neil   m   23   Boilermaker   b: Lanakshire
Nicholson Jane   f     18   Stay maker   b:  Lanakshire

Precognition taken on virtue of a warrant by the Magistrates of Glasgow on the Petition of the Procurator Fiscal of the Burgh Courts at Glasgow for the public interest against Jean McDougall prisoner in the prison of Glasgow accused of theft aggravated by habite and repute a thief and previous convictio of theft.
18 March 1846 Glasgow appeared Margaret McGilvray or Douglas, a widow residing at No. 38 Struthers Street Calton near Glasgow who declares that her daughter Mrs Dobbin and her son-in-law Dr William Dobbin of Mearns were in Glasgow on Wednesday 11 March 1846 and called upon Declarant at her house in Struthers Street.  That her daughter and son-in-law having made some purchases, prepared to leave Glasgow for Mearns by the coach which starts from the cross at a quarter past four o’clock.  That about three o’clock the Declarant accompanied her daughter and son-in-law to the coach to see them off and when going up Gallowgate Street and near the corner of Saltmarket Street a drove of restless cattle came past and to avoid them the Declarant and her family ran into a close in Gallowgate Street—on the south side thereof and between Saint Andrews Open and Saltmarket Street.  That a number of people ran into the close for the same purpose and the Declarant who is very weakly was pushed about a good deal in the crowd.
That after the cattle passed the Declarant came out of the close but in the bustle she lost sight of her friends and was proceeding up Gallowgate Street towards the coach office when she was overtaken by a Police Officer who informed her that she had been robbed.  That the Declarant immediately put her hand into her pocket and found that she had been robbed a part of her money viz 2 shilling pieces and 1 half crown piece.  That the Declarant was entirely unconscious of having been robbed until informed of it by the Policeman and although crushed and pushed about (in running towards the close in the crowd) she did not observe any suspicious looking person near her.  That when the Declarant left home to accompany her friends to the coach she had 8 shillings and in the course of the day the Declarant lent her daughter a sixpence –in changing one of the shillings for that purpose and then leaving in her pocket 2 half crown pieces and a sixpence and the last time the Declarant had her hand in her pocket was when she lent her daughter the sixpence which would be between two and three o’clock and is perfectly sure that at that time her money was all correct.  That the Declarant accompanied the Policeman and the prisoner to the Police Office where she saw 1 half crown piece and 1 shilling piece said to have been picked from the Declarant’s pocket and dropped by the prisoner but of course the Declarant could not identify these pieces, although such as the description of the money stolen from her.
That the Declarant was afterwards informed that another shilling piece had been found near the spot where the Declarant’s pocket is said to have been picked but the Declarant cannot identify this shilling, all she can say is that she was robbed of a half crown piece and two shilling pieces and she now sees pieces of that description in court but as before stated she cannot identify them.  All which is truth.  And declares she cannot write at present, from agitation.

Mrs Agnes Douglas or Dobbie, wife of and residing with William Dobbie Surgeon at Mearns, in the Parish of Mearns and county of Renfrew, declares conform to her mother, the first witness as to being in Glasgow along with her husband on the day in question and calling at her mother’s house in Calton.  That the Declarant and her husband having made some purchases, proceeded towards the coach at the cross by which they were to leave Glasgow at a quarter past four o’clock. That the Declared and her mother went up Gallowgate Street for this purpose a little before four o’clock and when near the cross and on the south side of Gallowgate Street a drove of furious bulls came past and so frightened the Declarant that she ran into the doorway of a Tobacconist’s shop hard by to be out of danger and the rest of the passengers also fled before the bulls.
That when the Declarant went into the Tobacconist’s shop door her mother seeing there was no room for her there passed on in the crowd up to Gallowgate Street towards the next close and the Declarant observed as her mother is old an infirm was carried along by the crowd that one woman viz. the prisoner stuck close to her right side and pushed and jostled her forward but did not see the prisoners hand about her mothers pocket and indeed had not any suspicion that anything improper was done to her mother by the prisoner until afterwards informed of the theft.  That when her mother was so carried along by the crowd the Declarant turned around to look for her husband and lost sight of her mother for a few minutes, but not finding her husband she turned towards where her mother was and saw the Officer Meffen in act of seizing the prisoner and almost at the same moment she saw the prisoner throw from her some pieces of silver money.  That the Declarant saw 2 pieces viz. 2 shilling pieces rolling upon the pavement, one of them towards the gutter and the other towards the grating of the Tobacconists window and did not see if the latter coin went into the grating.  That the Office picked up the shilling which rolled to the gutter but the Declarant did not see a third piece of money either thrown down by the Prisoner or picked up by the Officer but there may have been a 3rd piece so thrown down and picked up.  That the Declarant went forward and ascertained that her mother’s pocket had been pi cked of 4/6 in silver money and the Declarant and her husband who came forward soon afterwards went to the Police Office and put their names upon a sealed label which was appended to a shilling piece and a half crown, which were said to have been thrown away by the prisoner and picked up by the Officer on the occasion referred to, but of course the Declarant could not say whether the money was her mother’s property neither can say how much money (or in which kind of coins) her mother had, on the day in question but she knows that her mother had some money 2 shillings at least for the Declarant herself gave her that sum on the day in question previous to the theft.  That her husband is unwell at present, confined to bed, and unable to come to the Glasgow, but he saw nothing of the theft and was not aware of it until informed by the Declarant when the prisoner was on the way to the Police Office in customdy of the Officer. (Signed:  Agnes Dobbie)
Alexander Meffen, Criminal Officer in the Glasgow Police Establishment and residing in Graham Street Glasgow Declares that about four o’clock in the afternoon of Wednesday 11 March 1846 the Declarant happened to go up the north side of Gallowgate Street and when near the cross he observed the prisoner whom he knew before as a thief, following close behind the first and second witness who were accompanied by a gentleman.  That in a few minutes some unruly cattle came past and considerable stir was caused among the passengers on the south of the street and the first witness moved on among the crowd to be out of danger.  That when the first witness moved on among the crowd the prisoner made close up to her on her right side but a little behind—lifted the tail of the witnesses gown—put her hand in her pocket and took out something which the Declarant could not see.  That the first (witness) did not appear to feel the prisoner at her pocket and passed on unconscious of what had occurred when the Declarant ran across the street immediately and seized the prisoner.  That immediately on being seized the prisoner threw from her two pieces of silver money viz. 1 shilling piece and 1 half crown which the Declarant immediately picked up.  That the Declarant gave the prisoner in charge to the witness James Arthur and went after the woman that had been robbed and informed her of what had occurred after which he took the prisoner and the half crown and shilling he had picked to the Police Office accompanied by the first witness who said that 4/6 had been stolen from her pocket viz. 1 half crown piece and 2 shilling pieces upon which, having recovered only 3 and sixpence the Declarant returned to the spot and after searching for the missing shilling he found a shilling piece in the grating of Arthur’s shop window and a mark having been put on the shilling by the Declarant in Arthurs presence the shilling was taken to the office and labelled and signed.
28 March James Arthur Tobacconist in Gallowgate Street Glasgow and residing in East Regent Street Glasgow Declares that his shop is the second door down from Gallowgate Street from the cross and upon the south side of the street.  That while standing at his shop door between two and three o’clock of the afternoon of Wednesday 11 March 1846 the Declarant’s attention was attracted to the prisoner who, walking past his shop by a Policeman running across the street and seizing her.  That immediately upon being seized the prisoner then threw piece3s of money from her towards the grating I front of the Declanant’s window.  That two of the pieces rolled upon the pavement and these were picked up by the Officer and the Declarant went forward and saw that they were a shilling piece and a half crown piece.  That the Policeman then took the prisoner and the money to the Police Office but the Declarant did not accompany them.
That about five o’clock of the same evening the same Policeman came to the Declarans shop and informed him that the prisoner was charged with theft of 4 shillings and sixpence from a woman in Gallowgate Street near the Declarant’s door and that as only 3 shillings and sixpence had been recovered ther was still a shilling awanting an suggested that as the prisoner had thrown the money in the direction of the Declarant’s grating the missing shilling may be found there.  That the Declarant and the Policeman searched the grating and found a shilling piece which was taken to the Police Office—The Declarant first putting a mark upon it so as to know it again and the Declarant now identifies it in court.  That the Defendant having put no mark upon the money picked up by the Policeman as already stated cannot identify (those coins… corrects himself:  The Policeman put the mark on and the Declarant watched him).  Sign
7 April 1846 William Campbell, Criminal Office in the Glasgow Police Establishment and residing in Gallowgate Street Glasgow Declares that he has known the prisoner Jean McDougall for upwards of eleven years past and while out of prison during the last three years she has been habite and repute a thief associating with thieves and following no lawful employment.  That the conviction and sentence in the Police Court of Glasgow against Jean McDougall for theft dated 8 August 1835
(Applies to her …. Signs)
John Christie and
Hugh McKay (Concur)
Hugh Patrick, Criminal Officer (knows McDougall to have been sentenced in the Sherriffs Court of Paisley for theft) on 30 November 1842.
James Mitchell, Governor of Paisley Prison and residing there will also, if necessary prove the above conviction.
William Brown, Criminal Officer in the Gorbals Police Establishment (know McDougall was convicted in the Police Court of Gorbals on 16 March 1844.
James Graham concurs.
William McKay (Sherriffs Officer in Edinburgh knows McDougall was convicted in the Sherriffs Court of Edinburgh 24 August 1844).
(Glasgow 13 March 1846 before William Brodie Magistrate)
Appeared Jean McDougall who…. Declares that she is a native of Glasgow in the twenty third year of her age…. Wife of Neil Nicholson Dealer in Fruit and resides in High Street—That she does not know a woman named Margaret Gilvray or Gordon—that she was in Gallowgate Street on Wednesday last not in company with any person, and she is innocent of the charge state against her—That she was apprehended that day in Gallowgate—That she did not fling away or drop any silver money when apprehended or shortly before… she cannot write.
Ref:  The National Archives of Scotland holds the following sets of trial records for Jean McDougall.
Jean McDougall was found Guilty of theft, habite and refute, and previous conviction and was sentenced to 7 years transporation, and departed London 17th September 1846 on board the Convict ship: Elizabeth and Henry arriving Hobart Tasmania 4th January 1847.

Margaret Weston on 20th June, 2020 wrote:

Jean/Jane met Peter Miller sometime in 1849 as they had a son Peter Miller born 23 March 1850 in Hobart.
Peter Miller was born in Comfrie Scotland in 1821 and was a bootmaker by trade,  he joined the British Army and served in 80th Foot Regiment a unit charged with escorting convicts to Australia.  On their arrival they were based at Windsor, NSW.  He arrived in Sydney on board the Frances Charlotte II in 1837.  On 28th May 1841 Peter Miller was sentenced to 15 years for Robbery at the Windsor Quarter Sessions, but instead of spending his time in Sydney,  he along with other Colonial convicts, (being the name given to them for committing a crime in the colonly), were embarked on the schooner “Abercrombie” and sailed for Hobart Tasmania.  On arrival he was banished from Hobart to the Tasmanian interior due to bad behaviour.
While in Tasmania he met Rebecca Dayles a female convict on board the Asia.  They applied to be married 10 July 1849 but permission was refused.
As previously mentioned he met Jean/Jane and she became pregnant with their son Peter Miller, not long after the refusal for his marriage to Rebecca and on 11 June 1850 they applied to be married.  This application was refused.  Peter was sent to Longford, Tasmania 7th August 1852 where he met Mary George a Free woman and they applied to be married on 9 March 1853, permission was granted.After the permission was refused, Jean/Jane met James Williams, also a convict, who was tried for Burglary at the Chester Assize on 1st April 1843 and was convicted for 10 years he was then taken to the Hulk “Warrior” at Woolwich until he was transported on the Mount Stuart Elphinstone and arrived in Hobart 2nd February 1848.On 27 November 1849 Jean was recommended for a Ticket of Leave.  She was recommended for a Conditional Pardon on 30th September 1850 and 1st October 1850.
By 1850 Jean/Jane and James Williams had met and an application was placed to be allowed to marry on 4th March 1851, permission was granted and they married on 16th April 1851.On 2nd September 1851 Jean/Jane was granted her Conditional Pardon.  On 4th May 1853 she had attained her Freedom by Servitude… Period of Transportation had expired.. she had served her sentence.  This meant that she was free to move anywhere in Australia.
Jean/Jane and James had 7 children.
Jane died 8th December 1902 in Armidale NSW and is Buried in the Armidale Cemetery with headstone along with James.

Convict Changes History

Sharon Webster on 2nd February, 2013 made the following changes:

surname Mcdougall (prev. McDougall), alias1 Nicholson (alias) (prev. Nicholson (Alias)), date of birth 1823, date of death 1902, gender, crime

Margaret Weston on 18th June, 2020 made the following changes:


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