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William Fear Parrott

William Fear Parrott, one of 200 convicts transported on the England, 31 March 1832

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: William Fear Parrott
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1787
Occupation: Clerk
Date of Death: -
Age: -

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 53 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to Life

Crime: Attempted murder
Convicted at: London Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: Life
Ship: England
Departure date: 31st March, 1832
Arrival date: 18th July, 1832
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 199 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 89, Class and Piece Number HO11/8, Page Number 293 (147)
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

Dianne Jones on 28th May, 2021 wrote:

1831, 1 December: William Fear Parrott appeared at the Old Bailey. His trial transcript follows:

“First London Jury, before Mr. Recorder.

1. WILLIAM FEAR PARROTT was indicted for that he, on the 5th of October, at the Middle Temple, upon Harriet Ann Parrott, feloniously, unlawfully, and maliciously did make an assault, and with a certain sharp instrument, feloniously, unlawfully, and maliciously did strike, cut and would her upon the left side of her throat, with intent feloniously, wilfully, and of his malice aforethought, to kill and murder her; against the Statute.

2nd COUNT, stating his intent to be to disable her.

3rd COUNT, stating his intent to be to do her some grievous bodily harm.

ANN CHELL. I live at No. 1, Middle Temple-lane - I have known the prisoner and his wife about six years; I was out of town, and do not know when they separated. On the 5th of October, about eight o’clock at night, the prisoner called on me - he appeared sober; he said he called, expecting a letter, or message; from his wife - I told him I had received no letter, nor message; his wife was at that time working at Mrs. Nightingale’s, Fetter-lane - he asked if I would go and fetch her; I said I would not, but at last my niece went to see if she was there - she at last came to my room; that was between half-past eight and nine o’clock - the prisoner was still in the room; when she first came in he got up and caught hold of her by the hand, as if in friendship - he then pushed her into the corner, and asked her to live with him again; she replied, “Keep off, I cannot live with you any more;” I then got up, and said, “Parrott, leave her alone;” I took her into an adjoining room, and said, “Mrs. Parrott, you have weathered many storms with him, try him once more” - she said she could not, for she was in danger of her life; he was in my kitchen at the time, but could hear what passed, for he pushed into the room immediately, and I then took her into the bed-room - he followed us into that room, and asked her if she would return to him again; she told him No, she could not live with him any more - he said, “Won’t you?” she said No, she could not; he pushed her into a corner, and then turned himself round quick - I turned round but for a moment; he did not speak, then he turned round, and I saw him put his hand into his pocket, pull out a piece of paper, and he directly seized her by the throat; she called out, “Oh, my throat! my throat!” I called to my husband, “Chell, for goodness sake come here, for he is choking her;” I did not suppose he was doing any thing more than throttling her - my husband came immediately; I then saw her throat was bleeding to an extreme - she said, “The instrument is in my throat;” he said, “No, it is not,” and then he threw a razor away - it caught on my drawers, and broke the glass; I directly sent for an officer - I afterwards saw the officer take the razor up, and it was bloody; his wife bled so profusely, that my husband went without coat or hat on for Mr. Bradford, the surgeon - he arrived in about ten minutes; the bleeding had not stopped - my husband did all he could to stanch the blood.

Q. What did the prisoner do? A. I was supporting his wife on a chair, and he came and said, “Good bye, perhaps we shall meet again in another world;” he was then secured - I kept his wife at my house all night, and sat up with her all night, fearing it would hurt her to remove her; she was taken to the hospital next morning, and was there three weeks - the wound was very large; it went upwards, which prevented its cutting the arteries.

Cross-examined by MR. BARRY. Q. Have you known them often quarrel, and be reconciled again? A. I must leave that to the wife to say; she never left him before, to my knowledge, except to sleep at a friend’s house for a night; I have known them quarrel - they never separated; I cannot say whether he had a strong affection for her - he expressed a strong affection that night, and entreated her to come back; he never would work for her, nor his family - he said, “My dear Harriet, for God’s sake let us be reconciled;” I never saw anything to lead me to conclude he was flighty in his mind - his wife has said his tricks were mad at times when he was tipsy, but he was quite sober then.

Q. His wife said his tricks were mad at times? A. No, not on that night, nor anything like it; she has repeatedly said that he had mad tricks, and was tipsy - she never told me he had met with an accident in the head; I know nothing of his having a blow from a cricket-ball - he has had five children by his wife; the eldest is twenty-two, and the youngest nine years old.

Q. Did not the prisoner call out, at the instant he cut her throat, “Oh, God! what have I done?” A. No, he did not; he did not support her in his arms - he did not touch her till my husband got her out of the bedroom into the kitchen; he then sat down opposite me, took up the beer, and drank the officer’s good health - when the doctor came he knelt down on the hearth, and looked at the wound while the doctor was sewing her throat; we would not let him go out - it did not strike me that there was any thing extraordinary in his conduct.

HARRIET ANN PARROTT. The prisoner is my husband - he had not lived with me from the Tuesday five weeks before this happened; I was at work at Mrs. Nightingale’s, and slept over the water - I did not then know where he lived. I went to Mrs. Chell’s on the 5th of October, as she sent over for me - I got there between eight and pine o’clock, and saw my husband there; when I opened the room door he came to me in a hurry - I told him to keep off; he came to me - I said, “Keep off! keep off! let me alone!” Mrs. Chell asked me to go into the next room, and I told him to keep away and let me alone; Mrs. Chell then asked me to try him again, and live with him - I said I could not, and then he came into the room; I do not think he could hear what was said - he asked me to live with him again; I said I could not - he asked me again, and said, “Won’t you?” I said No; he said again, “Won’t you?” I said No - he turned sideways to me, took something out of his pocket like a letter, and tore it, then turned round, and took me by one side of the neck and pressed it, but what with I could not fell; I said afterwards, “Oh! you have left the instrument in my throat;” he said, “No, I have not - there it is,” and threw something across; I perceived blood coming from my throat - there was a looking-glass opposite, and I could see it streaming down; I just recollect Mrs. Chell coming to me, and remember getting across the room into the kitchen, and sitting down there, and that is all: I just recollect my husband saying, “We shall meet in another world;” I was insensible when the surgeon came - I came to myself afterwards; I passed the night at Chells, then went to the hospital, and was there three weeks and one day; I had been married to the prisoner twenty-three years - I have three children with me now; the youngest is between nine and ten years old - I do not know how my husband got his living after I left him; I am quite sure I said nothing to him, but refused to live with him again; I did not reproach him, or strike him.

Cross-examined. Q. I believe you had some quarrels? A. Yes, and had been reconciled again; Mrs. Nightingale had talked to him the day after I left him, but not particularly to reconcile us - she had not endeavoured to persuade me to return to him; I have seen my husband in rather a flighty and deranged state of mind when he has had a little to drink.

Q. Have you not seen him at times a little flighty without drink? A. No, not particularly - drink would make him flighty latterly; his actions were like a mad man sometimes - he was struck by a cricket-ball on Kenningnton-common six or seven years ago, and received an injury on the temple; he did attempt to destroy himself the day after I left him, which was five weeks before - I do not know of his having attempted it before at any time.

Q.Do you know whether he has a mark on his neck of his having attempted to cut his throat? A. I have heard he attempted it; he was sober when I came to Chell’s - it was all done in the space of five minutes.

Q. Did you not think he was in the state you had seen him before, crazy and heated? A. He did not appear so bad then - he was all of a work seemingly; I was not in the first room half a minute, and hardly know what condition he was in there - I was so flurried at seeing him, I hardly know; I think he said, “My dear Harriet, for God’s sake let us make peace;” he appeared anxious to be reconciled - I do not know what happened to me after my throat was cut, and do not know what he said at the instant; I do not recollect his saying, “O, God! what have I done?” I know Richard Lance.

Q. Have you not lately said to him that you were sorry to appear against your husband - that he was certainly deranged at times? A. I said his actions were such at times - I was not separated more than once from him; my five children are all living - my eldest daughter is a dressmaker, and pretty well provided for.

RICHARD BRADFORD. I am a surgeon, and live in Fleet-street. I was sent for to Mrs. Chell’s about nine o’clock in the evening; Mrs. Parrott was sitting in a chair- there was a puddle of blood, in the room, and a great deal over her clothes; Mr. Chell’s hand was over her neck, and when it was with drawn the blood flowed freely - I said at first that she was dead, for she was cold and blanched, and her sight apparently gone, but Chell said she was not dead; it was a large wound, four or five inches long, of a semicircular shape - it had gone obliquely upwards; the large vessels were laid bare for an inch and a half - the jugular vein had a slight scratch; if the wound had not gone upwards it must have caused instant death; I secured the vessels, laid her down, and sewed the wound up- I went with her to the hospital: I thought the wound dangerous, and ordered her to lay on the floor all night, and not to be moved - I saw the prisoner in the room; my mind was engaged with the wound, but I heard him say, “I committed it;” when the wound was dressed he approached towards her, and used some expressions, but I thrust him back.

Cross-examined. Q. You do not recollect the expression? A. I do not, but I was afraid he would disturb the wound again by the excitement; he was in one corner of the room when I entered, and Mr. Chell was holding the wound; I found the room door open - I should think the prisoner might easily have gone before I came.

MR. BARRY to MRS. PARROTT. Q. Before you went into the second room you yourself said you would not live with him? A. I said I could not live with him - I did not say to Mrs. Chell, “You see he is mad in a moment;” I said, “See how he turns in a moment.”

RICHARD LIGHTFOOT. I am an officer. Jenkins, the porter of the inn, fetched me to the room - he pointed to the prisoner, and said, “That is your prisoner;” the prisoner was on one knee, apparently looking at the wound; he looked at me, and said, “I will not go away;” I said I was not afraid that he would - I knew him very well: I requested him to sit down on a chair close by, till Mr. Jenkins came in - I then requested him to take care of him, and I looked about for the razor; I found it on the drawers - it was bloody; there was a glass broken - the wound was bleeding, and Mr. Bradford was endeavouring to stop it; he said he had the razor from his employer, Mr. Sidney, No. 5, Child’s-place, that he had borrowed it to shave himself; I knew he was living with Mr. Sidney, who is a Sheriff’s officer, as a follower.

Prisoner. Q. I believe you have seen Mr. Sidney since? A. I have made application to him; he said he had lent him a razor that day I believe - the prisoner told me he had sharpened the razor, and shaved himself with it - Sidney owned the razor.

Prisoner’s Defence. I borrowed the razor of Sidney that evening, between six and seven o’clock, as I was usually in the habit of doing; I had only lived with him a fortnight or three weeks - I went up to the laundress, and shaved myself; I went from there to Mr. Chell’s - Mr. Chell said they could do nothing with my wife to bring her to a reconciliation, and advised me to pay no attention to her, but let her take her own course, she was so obstinate - she left me a fortnight before, and I was so distressed in my mind, I was six days in St. Bartholomew’s hospital, through the affliction of my wound.

One witness gave the prisoner a good character.

(Dec. 4.) GUILTY - DEATH. Aged 44.

Recommended to Mercy by the Jury, on account of his former apparent aberration; the Prosecutrix joined in this recommendation.” (see oldbaileyonline.org)


Dianne Jones on 28th May, 2021 wrote:

1832, 6 February: William Fear Parrott’s death sentence was commuted to transportation for life (21 years) following his successful petition for clemency. Summary details follow:

“HO 17/69/40…Prisoner name: William Fear Parrott (or William Parrot).

Court and date of trial: Old Bailey, December Sessions 1831.

Crime: Cutting with intent to murder Harriett Ann Parrott, prisoner’s wife and prosecutrix.

Initial sentence: [Death] sentence commuted to transportation for life.

Annotated (Outcome): Considered at Report in Council 6 February 1832.

Petitioner(s): The prisoner, undersigned by six supporters.

Grounds for clemency (Petition Details): Unhappy marriage, estranged from his wife, and family under pressure; prisoner previously attempted suicide; prisoner did not intend to commit act; prisoner contrite; prisoner affectionate; Prosecutrix has obstinate temper.

Other papers: Letter from [William Wix] St Bartholomew’s Hospital.

Report of verbal communication from [William Wix].

Deposition of Richard Lance.

Date: 1831-1832.” (see https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C16440905)

Dianne Jones on 28th May, 2021 wrote:

1832: On arrival in VDL, he was 44 and a clerk. He said he was married to Harriet and they had 5 children. He had no previous convictions.

1840, 2 June: He was granted a Ticket of Leave.

1843, 31 May: His Conditional Pardon No.439 was approved (see https://stors.tas.gov.au/CON31-1-35$init=CON31-1-35p105).

D Wong on 28th May, 2021 wrote:

William Parrott alias williams was listed as 44 years old on arrival.

Place of Birth: Bristol.

26/12/1808: Married Harriett Ann Garwood at St. Martin in the Fieldes, London - they had 5 children:
1/10/1815: George Francis born London - other children not listed.

William was 5’4” tall, dark complexion, black to grey hair, grey eyes.

1832-35 Musters: Assigned to Mr. Robert Allwright.

Convict Changes History

Dianne Jones on 28th May, 2021 made the following changes:

gender: m

Dianne Jones on 28th May, 2021 made the following changes:

occupation, crime

Dianne Jones on 28th May, 2021 made the following changes:

date of birth: 1787 (prev. 0000)

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