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George Toomer

George Toomer, one of 112 convicts transported on the Proteus, 12 April 1831

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: George Toomer
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1793
Occupation: Ploughman
Date of Death: 1854
Age: 61 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 51 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: Machine breaking
Convicted at: Wilts. Special Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Proteus
Departure date: 12th April, 1831
Arrival date: 3rd August, 1831
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 111 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 89, Class and Piece Number HO11/8, Page Number 86
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

D Wong on 12th August, 2019 wrote:

13/1/1831 Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette Somerset, England:
James Lush, 40; James Toomer 35; and George Toomer, 36; were found guilty of feloniously robbing William Perry, at Homington, of certain monies, his property, under a threat of breaking his machines. James Lush and George Toomer were again convicted of having feloniously robbed Bartlett POinniger, of two sovereigns, his property.

James Lush arrived VDL on the ‘Proteus 1831’.

George Toomer was convicted along with his brother James Toomer (Eleanor 1831 to NSW) for ‘Machine breaking’.

George was listed as 36 years old on arrival.

Place of Birth: Bishopstone, Wiltshire.

Father: Richard Toomer buried 25/7/1820, aged 64 at Bishopstone.

Mother: Sarah Lodge married 2/4/1792 at Bishopstone.

James 5’6½” tall, brown hair, grey eyes, brown mole on right arm, literate.

1832-33 Muster: Assigned to Captain Spotswood.

1835 Muster: TOL

3/2/1836: Free Pardon.

19/4/1837: Left Launceston to Port Jackson pr ‘Elizabeth’.

1841 UK Census: Living with Lydia Toomer in Wiltshire UK. Married Lydia Parsons 21/2/1819 at Broad Chalke, Wiltshire.
1/7/1819: Henry Toomer
1/7/1822: Mary Toomer d 1838

1851 Census: Seems to have remarried to Sarah who was 22 years old.
(Sara Warham b 1/12/1828, Salisbury Wiltshire).

1846: Lydia Toomer died at Alderbury, Wiltshire.

17/5/1847: Married Sarah Weaream, under age, labouring servant, daughter of George Weaream at Alderbury, Wiltshire.
25/3/1848: Henry Toomer d 1866
17/9/1852: Mary Ann Toomer

1854: George Toomer died at Alderbury, Wiltshire.

D Wong on 12th August, 2019 wrote:

Sorry, a typo - that should read ‘George was 5’6½” tall’

Maureen Withey on 12th August, 2019 wrote:

The Wilts Special Commission was set up to deal swiftly with those convicted during the “Swing Riots”, which took place in agricultural communities, who were suffering greatly due to a reduction in wages, and in the months of November and December 1830, groups of agricultural workers gathered to break machinery, which they feared would further affect their jobs.

Wilts Special Commission, Salisbury, Wednesday
James Lush, 40, James Toomer, 35, George Toomer, 36, and James Lane, 23, were indicted for having feloniously, at Homington, robbed William Perry of certain monies, his property.
William Perry: Lives at Homington, and is a farmer; on the 23rd of November, about twelve o’clock at night, he went out of doors about one mile from home, in consequence of some information he received, to meet the mob, which consisted of forty or fifty; he rode with them to his house; he saw Lush and James Toomer; he said to the latter, “James Toomer, is that you? I am sorry to see you here.”  He said, “Yes, we are going to see the machine, and to break it.” Toomer had been in his employ about three weeks before; as they were going across the yard, witness had a lanthorn in his hand, when George Toomer laid hold of his coat, and threatened to pull him off his horse if he did not let him have it; he took it from him, and the mob then went into the machine-house; when they struck some blows on the machine the candle went out, and they returned to the house, where they demanded money, which, after some time, he gave to them; George Toomer was close by; they said they must have money, they had got it from other persons, mentioning their names, and that they would have some from him; finding they were determined to have it, he told them he had nothing but silver; he ultimately gave them some; George Toomer was standing close by; he saw several sledge hammers in the hands of the mob, but he could not tell whose; they then demanded beer, which he was obliged to give them; they next set up a cheer, which, after some difficulty, he silenced, because he had a mother, eighty years of age, living close by, and he did not wish her to be alarmed;  the mob then went away; the mob, when they first demanded money, wanted two sovereigns.
C.K. Perry identified the prisoner Lush and the two Toomers, as being close to his brother when the money was demanded.
Thomas Luther identified Lane as having been in the mob at another place, but he did not see him at Mr Perry’s.
Mr Justice Alderson said there was no case made out against Lane.
The Jury found Lush and the two Toomers Guilty, and acquitted Lane.
Morning Chronicle, 7 Jan 1831

Maureen Withey on 12th August, 2019 wrote:

Wilts Special Commission, Salisbury, Wednesday
James Lush and George Toomer were again charged with having robbed Bartlett Pinniger, of two sovereigns, his property.  Mr Bartlett Pinniger is a farmer, living at Coombe Bissett.  On the 23rd Nov. he was told that a mob had collected, and were coming down to Coombe; he I consequence went home, armed himself with a brace of pistols, and about 20 or 30 men whom he had collected together with sticks, ready to meet them.  They waited till ten o’clock, when he closed the gates.  A neighbour of his, of the name of Fleetwood, then came up to him with a lanthorn, and while they were talking the mob came up; he took the lanthorn out of Mr Fleetwood’s hand, and leant over the wall, saying, that he would not give them any money, but that they might go and break the machine; he did this because his wife was very ill, and he was afraid she would be alarmed. They said they should not have money, and that he would shoot them.  They said, “Oh, you can shoot but one of us.”  One of the men having effected an entrance into the yard, he called out “Come on.”  The mob then presses witness and Mr Fleetwood so hard that he called to his men to come and assist.  He again held up the lanthorn, and held out the pistol, which flashed in the pan when he pulled the trigger.  The mob kept on striking the lanthorn with sticks until the light was struck out.  He received a severe blow on the arm, and many of his men had broken heads.  A scuffle then ensued, and finding (from the nature of their numbers and weapons) that they could do nothing with them, he called out that he would give them the two sovereigns.  One of the men, who had a sledge-hammer, was knocking down the walls at this time.  The generality of the mob had very large sticks. He asked who took the money, and immediately one of them took it; several of them called out, as if in doubt of it having been given; they then called out for the machine, and he having told them where it was, they went and broke it.  This stick was taken from one of the mob; it was the branch of a tree, and was used by sawyers as a lever to move timber.  He could not identify either of the prisoners.
David Hillier, a man who was in the employ of the last witness, proved having seen the two prisoners in the yard on the 23rd November; he also spoke to the fact of the scuffle; he received a blow in it, which made him feel a “little senseless,” but he recovered just as the money was given; the prisoners either had sticks or iron bars in their hands.
William Baker, another servant of the prosecutor’s, also identified the prisoners.
The prisoner Lush: My Lord, I should like to know whether there is any punishment for that witness who swears a false oath?
Mr Justice Alderson: Certainly there is.
Lush: Then, milord, that’s the man.
Witness said: I have spoken the truth, James, you know.
Lush (grasping the bar in front of the Dock): My Lord, I wish my hands may never come up if he has not sworn falsely against me. Oh!  William, you be a false man. You’re a scandalous fellow to destroy a poor man’s life in this manner.
The prisoners, in their defence, protested their innocence.  Mr Justice Alderson having summed up, the Jury found the prisoners both Guilty.
Morning Chronicle, 7 Jan 1831

Convict Changes History

D Wong on 12th August, 2019 made the following changes:

date of birth: 1793 (prev. 0000), date of death: 1854 (prev. 0000), gender: m, occupation, crime

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