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Thomas Saunders

** community contributed record **

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Thomas Saunders
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1765
Occupation: Labourer
Date of Death: 3rd September, 1846
Age: 81 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 56 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: Stealing a pig
Convicted at: Chelmsford Sessions
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Active, Albermarle, Atlantic, Barrington, Britannia, Mary Ann, Matilda, Salamander and William and Ann
Departure date: January, 1791
Arrival date: 9th July, 1791
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 1019 other convicts


Primary source: convict ships to NSW. History Australia
Source description:

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Community Contributions

Phil Hands on 30th July, 2017 wrote:

Tried and convicted on 12th March 1787 at the Chelmsford, Essex for the theft of a pig valued at 40 shillings, sentenced to 7 years transportation.
Served 4 years on the Prison Hulk ‘Lion’ which was moored in Portsmouth Harbour.
Left Portsmouth on 27th March 1791.
Ship:- the ‘Matilda’ sailed with 230 male convicts on board of which 25 died during the voyage.
Arrived on 1st August 1791.

Thomas Saunders, aged 22, described as a labourer of Walthamstow was charged with stealing a sow pig, valued at 40 shillings, the property of George Mitchell. The theft occurred at Essex on 27th July 1786. He stood trial at the Essex Lent Assizes at Chelmsford on 12th March 1787 and was sentenced to seven years transportation. Serving the first years of his sentence on the prison hulk “Lion” moored in Portsmouth Harbour, he was eventually transported on the convict transport “Matilda”, a ship of 480 tons, Captain Matthew Weatherhead, which departed Portsmouth on 27th March 1791 and arrived Port Jackson on 1st August the same year.
In 1794, his sentence completed and now a free man, Thomas Saunders was granted 30 acres on the south bank of the Hawkesbury River near Pitt Town, New South Wales, where he established a small farm. Two years later Thomas Saunders of Hawkesbury and Mary Bouchier of Parramatta were married at St John’s Church, Parramatta, by Rev. Samuel Marsden, they had 7 children between 1797-1812. Thomas made his mark while Mary signed her name with a flourish, indicating that she had some education.
While Thomas and Mary experienced all the ups and downs of farming in the early days of the colony, they generally prospered and eventually extended their interests to include several other properties as well as a bakery at the Rocks, Sydney.
In the 1805 Muster, Thomas Saunders was recorded as a settler on 30 acres at the Hawkesbury. He had 23 acres planted with wheat, 3 acres maize, 2 acres barley, 1/4 acre peas and beans, 1 acre orchard and gardens and 3/4 acre of pastures. He owned one boar pig and one sow pig and 40 bushels of wheat were on hand. He, his wife and four children were ‘off stores’, and he employed three free men and two ticket of leave convicts.
Mary Bouchier, a banquet cook, was tried at the Old Bailey on 19th February 1794. She was charged with stealing some silver spoons and other items from an employer, Mrs. Peter Boileau. Mary pleaded not guilty and claimed that the items had been given to her in a bundle of clothing to mind for another servant, Ann Goostry. Mary’s story was not believed and she was sentenced to death and sent to Newgate Prison. Five months later Mary was offered clemency provided she was prepared to accept transportation to New South Wales for the rest of her life. Mary accepted and was transported as one of 133 female convicts on the “Indispensible”, a ship of 351 tons, under Captain Wilkinson, which arrived at Port Jackson on 30 th April 1796, after a voyage of about six months.

Convict Changes History

Phil Hands on 30th July, 2017 made the following changes:

convicted at, term: 7 years, voyage, source: convict ships to NSW. History Australia (prev. ), firstname: T%homas, surname: Saunders, alias1: , alias2: , alias3: , alias4: , date of birth: 1765, date of death: 3rd September, 1846, gender: m, occupation, c

Phil Hands on 24th July, 2018 made the following changes:

firstname: Thomas (prev. T%homas)

Maureen Withey on 1st April, 2021 made the following changes:


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