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Thomas Napper

Thomas Napper, one of 150 convicts transported on the Sesostris, 23 November 1825

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Thomas Napper
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1807
Occupation: Shop boy
Date of Death: 1827
Age: 20 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 54 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to Life

Crime: Pocket picking
Convicted at: Middlesex Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: Life
Ship: Sesostris
Departure date: 23rd November, 1825
Arrival date: 21st March, 1826
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 150 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 88, Class and Piece Number HO11/5, Page Number 308
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

Maureen Withey on 12th March, 2020 wrote:

Old Bailey Proceedings Online (http://www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 12 March 2020), May 1825, trial of THOMAS NAPPER (t18250519-89).

THOMAS NAPPER, Theft > pocketpicking, 19th May 1825.
946. THOMAS NAPPER was indicted for stealing, on the 7th of May , a watch, value 3 l.; a seal, value 2 s. 6 d., and a key, value 2 s., the goods of William Jones , from his person .
WILLIAM JONES. I am a silk weaver . On the 7th of May, about half-past nine o’clock in the evening, I was in Wilson-street, Finsbury-square - my wife was with me: a young man came by, and took my watch from my fob - he ran away in a moment; I cannot tell who it was. I gave an alarm of Stop thief! and Mr. Fisher stopped the prisoner. I saw the case of my watch, but the inside of it was gone.
SAMUEL JOHN FISHER . I was going up Smith-street, and heard the cry of Stop thief! I made a start immediately, and saw a gentleman before me stop the prisoner; he was running, and fell down, when he was stopped - he said, “Don’t stop me, I have only broken a window;” he was taken to the watch-house. I found this watch-case on the spot where he had fallen.
THOMAS GOODING . I am a constable. I heard the cry of Stop thief! and when I came up I saw the prisoner, and took him to the watch-house. Fisher showed me this watch-case afterwards.
(Case produced and sworn to.)
Prisoner’s Defence. I am innocent.
GUILTY . Aged 18.
Transported for Life.
There is an earlier conviction at the Old Bailey, probably the same lad.
Old Bailey Proceedings Online (http://www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 12 March 2020), September 1823, trial of THOMAS NAPPER (t18230910-207).

THOMAS NAPPER, Theft > shoplifting, 10th September 1823.
1176. THOMAS NAPPER was indicted for stealing, on the 28th of August , a pair of boots, value 10 s., the goods of William Vinicombe , privately in his shop .
FRANCES VINICOMBE . I am the wife of William Vinicombe ; we live in Tabernacle Walk. On the 28th of August, about a quarter to three o’clock, I saw the prisoner with these boots in his hands, walking fast away from the shop - I went out after him - he dropped them and ran off, but was stopped - they had hung up about a yard inside the door; I saw them safe ten minutes before.
SAMUEL BRIDGES. I am a constable. I received him in charge.
(Property produced and sworn to.)
GUILTY. Aged 16.
Confined Three Months .

Principal Superintendent of Convicts’ Office, Sydney, July 20, 1826.
THE undermentioned Prisoners having absented themselves from their respective Employments, and some of them at large with false Certificates, all Constables and others are hereby required to use their utmost Exertions in lodging them in safe Custody;—
1. Napper Thomas, Sesostris, 19, London, 5 feet 5, blue eyes, red hair, fair much freckled comp. from Hyde Park Barrack.

Government Notice.  Colonial Secretary’s Office, April 2, 1827.
His Excellency the Governor has derived much Satisfaction from the Reports he has received of the spirited and laudable Conduct of the following assigned Servants of Mr. Wood, of Chipping ; viz.
These Men, after a severe Conflict with a Party of desperate Ruffians, one of whom, Thomas Napper, alias Wm. Richardson, was killed on the Spot, succeeded in securing Wm. Ward, who lately broke out of Sydney Gaol, and Thomas Power, a notorious Offender, both of whom are severely wounded.
Sydney Gazette, 9 Apr 1827.

Maureen Withey on 10th January, 2021 wrote:

July 26.-Thomas Napper, prisoner of the crown for life, a runaway from the Prisoners’ Barrack since the 17th instant, and apprehended this morning at a public house on the Rocks, in the act of drinking wine; treadmill for 14 days, and returned to his station.
Sydney Gazette, 29 July 1826.

Penny-Lyn Beale on 25th March, 2021 wrote:

New South Wales, Australia, Convict Indents. Sesostris - 1825/6

Indent No; 69
Name; Thomas Napper
Age; 20
Reads & writes, Protestant. Single
Native Place; Bristol
Trade or calling; Shop boy
Offence; Highway Robbery
Height; 5 ft. 3 3/4 in
Eyes; Hazel
Hair; Dk Red
Completion; Ruddy,
Behaviour on board; Well
Assigned; J McArther, Cambden
Additional remarks noted against name; KILLED; about 5 March 1827. A Bushranger

Convict Changes History

Maureen Withey on 12th March, 2020 made the following changes:

date of birth: 1807 (prev. 0000), date of death: 1827 (prev. 0000), gender: m, crime

Penny-Lyn Beale on 25th March, 2021 made the following changes:


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