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James Stapleton

James Stapleton, one of 200 convicts transported on the Indefatigable, October 1814

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: James Stapleton
Aliases: Staples
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1792
Occupation: -
Date of Death: 28th July, 1875
Age: 83 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 60 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to Life

Crime: Pocket picking
Convicted at: Old Bailey
Sentence term: Life
Ship: Indefatigable
Departure date: October, 1814
Arrival date: 26th April, 1815
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 200 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/2, Page Number 181 (92)
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 2nd September, 2017 wrote:

Tried and convicted of ‘Pickpocketing’ at the Old Bailey on 16th July 1814 for stealing a silk handkerchief, sentenced to transportation for life.
Left England in late 1814.
Ship:- the ‘Indefatigable’ sailed with 200 male convicts on board of which 2 died during the voyage.
Arrived on 26th April 1815.

In 1819 at Windsor James married free settler Elizabeth Browning, she had arrived with her convict mother Mary Browning on the ‘Friends’ 1811, they had 6 children between 1821-1835.

Old Bailey Trial Transcription.
Reference Number: t18140706-14

574. JAMES STAPLETON was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 5th of July , a silk handkerchief, value 6 s. the property of Major Kirkham , from his person .
MAJOR KIRKHAM. I am an engraver ; I live in Bethnal-green-road. On the 5th of July, I was in St. Martin’s-court, Ludgate-hill . I was looking at a print shop; I did not know that my pocket was picked until I was told of it.
JOHN HODSON . I am an officer. On the 5th of July, I was in St. Martin’s-court; I saw the prisoner with his knee against the prosecutor. I saw the prisoner take this handkerchief out of the prosecutor’s right hand pocket; I jumped up to the prisoner, and took the handkerchief from him. I then said to the prosecutor, you have lost your handkerchief. I saw the prisoner take the handkerchief out of his pocket.
Prosecutor. It is my handkerchief.
Prisoner’s Defence. I picked the gentleman’s handkerchief up, and returned it to the gentleman; the officer came up, and said I picked his pocket.
GUILTY , aged 22.
Transported for Life .
London jury, before Mr. Recorder

Phil Hands on 27th September, 2017 wrote:

Elizabeth died on 28th May 1864 age 58.
James died on 28th July 1873 age 83.

Denis Pember on 8th October, 2017 wrote:

James married Elizabeth Browning in 1819 at Windsor.
Elizabeth was the daughter of Mary Browning (Convict, 1811, “Friends”) she had come free when her mother was transported.
James and Elizabeth are recorded in the 1828 census,
page 353…
[Ref S2325]  Staples, James, 33, ticket of leave, Indefatigable, life, farmer, Wilberforce.
[Ref S2326] Staples, Elizabeth, 22, came free, Friends, 1811.
[Ref S2327] Staples, Catherine, 7, born in the colony.
[Ref S2328] Staples, Anne, 3, born in the colony.

Convict Changes History

Phil Hands on 2nd September, 2017 made the following changes:

convicted at, alias1: Staples, date of birth: 1792 (prev. 0000), date of death: 1875 (prev. 0000), crime

Phil Hands on 27th September, 2017 made the following changes:

date of death: 28th July, 1875 (prev. 1875), gender: m

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