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James Turner, one of 192 convicts transported on the William Miles, 15 March 1828
Name, Aliases & Gender
Birth, Occupation & Death
|Date of Birth:
|Date of Death:
life span was 61 years*
* Median life span based on contributions
Conviction & Transportation
Sentenced to Life
||Stafford Quarter Session
15th March, 1828
29th July, 1828
|Place of arrival
||Van Diemen's Land
Travelled with 191 other convicts
||Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 89, Class and Piece Number HO11/6, Page Number 351 (177)
||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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Anonymous on 30th June, 2011 wrote:
I refer you to the statement of "Gypsey Smith" at his trial where he states he had been in the colony 29 years, and he is the only James Turner who fits exactly in that date range, ie 1828.
If you click on the tag above this article you will find some more articles on him.
My Great Grandfather (J.H.Watmuff) mentions in his diary a brief encounter with him at the "half way" diggings between Sandy Creek and Newbridge, 9th Nov. 1856 but mistakenly so, as he had been captured a week before at Daisy Hill. They were probably the remnants of his gang who escaped.
My G.Gfather later met Gray the digger who initiated gypsey’s capture, and gives the following account of his capture, somewhat different to the newspaper account.
"Oct 4th 1857. Weather hot & sultry, sure
sign of the coming summer. We joined
2 more mates last Monday, both married
men, W.Gray, & A.Alexander, 2 old mates
of Harrys in days gone by the former is
a smart young chap, he has been very un-
lucky lately, about 3 months ago he was
living on the Adelaide Lead & going up a
deserted gully, he saw a man washing him
self on going up to him without being
observed he recognised him as being the noted
bushranger & murderer, that had defied
all laws human & divine â€œGypsy Smithâ€
there was Â£400 reward for his capture
Gray didnt show any mistrust but got
into conversation with the fellow got him
to give him a light of his pipe Etc.
he sauntered back home after hiding & seeing
him go into a little hut among some scrub
he at once started for Maryborough some 10
miles, & getting a pistol & the assistance of
2 troopers returned, & bursting in the hut
after a desperate resistance captured him, but
not before he fired a shot at Bill which went
through his hat & grazed his head (rather a
narrow escape) Bill, of course wanted his
money, he was referred to Melbourne & had
to employ a lawyer, he was humbugged
for upwards of 2 months & at length got
Â£130, 70 of which he had to pay his lawyer
then he had his own expenses to meet &
his family had to get their necessaries on
credit so after all was settled he found
he was in debt Â£10.0.0. what a disgrace
to the Government to give a poor man such
bother after risking his life in the capture
of one of the greatest wretches that ever existed."
Stephen Arnold on 26th January, 2013 wrote:
I made the contribution linking this man as probably the notorious bushranger Gipsy Smith.
However it is wrong, his name was William Turner and might be the convict at http://www.convictrecords.com.au/convicts/turner/william/105811
The reason for the error was original source for the name of “Gipsy Smith” as “James Turner” in James Flett’s book “Dunolly.” Flett was mistaken, as every newspaper article I have since found says the bushranger’s name was “William Turner”