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Richard Perkins

Richard Perkins, one of 298 convicts transported on the Hilsborough [Hillsborough], October 1798

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Richard Perkins
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1786
Occupation: -
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: Theft
Convicted at: Warwick Assizes
Sentence term: Life
Ship: Hilsborough
Departure date: October, 1798
Arrival date: 26th July, 1799
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 298 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 255 (128)
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

Phil Hands on 17th June, 2017 wrote:

Richard was tried and convicted at the Warwick Assizes on 23rd July 1796 for robbing the shop of Mr Dale, of Colehill, sentenced to death, later commuted to transportation for life (he was 10 years old).
Left England on 23rd December 1798.
Ship:- the ‘Hillsborough’ sailed with 300 male convicts on board of which 95 died during the voyage.
Arrived on 26th July 1799.

Chester Chronicle Friday 5th August 1796 p. 3

The trials of the prisoners at Warwick, commenced on Monday, before Mr. Judge Buller…Henry Williams (aged 17) and Richard Perkins (aged only 10) for robbing the shop of Mr Dale, of Colehill, and John Town, for a burglary and robbery in the house of Mr. Wilkinson, of Birmingham, were all capitally convicted…

Northampton Mercury Saturday 30th July 1796 p. 3
At Warwick Assized on Monday last,...Richard Perkins, a pretty looking boy of 10, and Henry Williams aged 17, were capitally indicted for stealing a piece of linen cloth from the shop of Mr. Dale of Colehill. Verdict, Guilty. The jury recommended Perkins to mercy.
Citation details: Staffordshire Advertiser Saturday 30th July 1796 p. 4
Perkins, on account of his tender years (though an old offender) was recommended to mercy.

After his arrival, he would appear to have been assigned to work at the ‘Coal River’ - what is now known as Newcastle. Only the men with the most desparate reputations were assigned to work there. During his time there he attempted to escape from the colony by stealing a boat.
In the 1801 Muster Richard Perkins is recorded as having been tried before the Criminal Courts at Sydney on the 5 March 1801 a felony. He was tried along with Paul Loutherborow, Samuel Pain and Thomas Rose for stealing a boat from the Hunter River and attempting to leave the colony. All four were sentenced to death, but were later pardoned.

Richard received a conditional pardon on 4th June 1806

Richard married Sarah Burgess (daughter of convicts John Burgess, ‘Royal Admiral’ 1792 & Ann Daniels, ‘Indispensible’ 1796) in 1812 in Sydney, they had 3 children between 1813-1818.

In 1817 he made a Petition for Mitigation of Sentence, and is recorded as the master of a vessel.

On 10 Feb 1817 he lodged a Petition for permission to procede to Port Dalrymple in Mr Satler’s schooner. In his petitions to Governor Macquarie he states that he was eleven when he arrived in 1799 and was transported for seven years. He also says he was twelve when he stole the boat.

Sydney Gazette Saturday 23rd May 1818 p. 1
The Public are hereby cautioned against giving Trust or Credit to my Wife Sarah Perkins, otherwise Burgess, as I am determined against being responsible for any Debts by her contracted; as she absented herself from her Home without any Provocation.

In 1819 he lodged another petition as an emancipated convict seeking permission for a voyage of speculation on the coast. It may be that he never returned from this voyage.

Richard is mentioned a number of times sailing in and around Sydney to Hobart and Port Dalrymple and Fiji during his marriage to Sarah Burgess. Richard left Sydney in about July 1820 aboard a brig called “Governor Macquarie” bound for Port Dalrymple. This is the last time he is mentioned in the Trove database.

Convict Changes History

Phil Hands on 17th June, 2017 made the following changes:

date of birth: 1786 (prev. 0000), gender: m, crime

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