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Thomas Watson

Thomas Watson, one of 189 convicts transported on the Duke of Portland, January 1807

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Thomas Watson
Aliases: none
Gender: -

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1780
Occupation: -
Date of Death: -
Age: -

Life Span

Life span

Median life span was 54 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 7 years

Crime: -
Convicted at: London Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: Duke of Portland
Departure date: January, 1807
Arrival date: 27th July, 1807
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 201 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 391 (195) -- Old Bailey Online
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

Gail Robyn Newman on 29th August, 2021 wrote:

Theft: grand larceny.
28th April 1802
Reference Number t18020428-39
Verdict Guilty; Guilty
Sentence Transportation
Related Material
Associated Records
Digital Panopticon
Thomas Watson b. 1780, 2 records
Digital Panopticon
Samuel Rutter b. 1781, 3 records
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304. THOMAS WATSON and SAMUEL RUTTER were indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 29th of March , eighty-six quires of paper, value 61. the property of Charles Whittingham .

CHARLES WHITTINGHAM sworn. - I am a printer ; I live at No. 16, Dean-street, Fetter-lane: On Monday, the 29th of March, about half past one o’clock, I observed the two prisoners coming out of my office, No. 1, Dean-street , each with a bundle of paper on their shoulder, containing the number of quires specified in the indictment; I immediately crossed over the way to the printing-office, and met the prisoners; I laid hold of one of them, I think it was Watson, and he threw the paper down upon my arm; I lost my hold, and he ran away; the other prisoner threw down the paper, and ran away also; I immediately cried stop thief, and followed them; they ran to the top of the street which leads into Fetter-lane, one turned to the right, and the other to the left; I followed the one to the left, which was Watson, and took him into custody; in consequence of my crying out stop thief, Rutter was taken by a constable, who is in Court; his name is Fletcher.

Q. Had you observed Rutter sufficiently to know he was the same man when he was brought back? - A. Yes, I had spoke to him on the steps of the printing-office door about ten minutes before; I asked him what he wanted there; he told me he wanted no person in particular, and walked away; I am sure he is the same person.

Q. Do you know if there was any body in your office at the time? - A. Yes, but not in the room where the paper was.

JOHN HOUGHTON sworn. - I am a carpenter: On the 29th of March last, about half past one o’clock, I saw the two prisoners at the bar come out of Mr. Whittingham’s warehouse with the paper on their shoulders; they came out at the front door; I first thought they were two of Mr. Whittingham’s men; I turned to the right, and went down Dean-street; when they had got about

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twenty yards down, I saw Mr. Whittingham cross the way; he collared the first, which was Watson, and asked him where he got that paper from; he threw down the paper upon Mr. Whittingham’s arm, and Mr. Whittingham lost hold of him; he then turned round, and ran up Dean-street; then Mr. Whittingham called out stop thief; one of them turned to the right, and the other to the left, into Fetter-lane; then they were taken in Fetter-lane, and brought back.
Q. Are you sure that the people that you saw running were the same that were brought back? - A. Yes; we sent for Mr. Fletcher, the constable, and they were delivered to him.

THOMAS FLETCHER sworn. - On Monday, the 29th of March, about half past one o’clock, I was standing within my own door, and saw a person run very furious past the door; I then heard the cry of stop thief; I immediately opened the door, and ran out; the prisoner, Rutter, was then stopped by being thrown down; his heels were kicked up; I immediately took him into custody; I had information that Mr. Whittingham was robbed; I then took him to the corner of Dean-street, and by that time the other prisoner was taken. I called for assistance, and took them both to the Compter; the paper was delivered to me by Mr. Whittingham, and I have had it ever since; (produceit.)

Whittingham. This is my paper; it is part of a quantity of paper that came in on the preceding Saturday; there were twenty-six bundles of it; I went into the room just before the robbery, for I had a suspicion of the prisoner Rutter; the paper was there then; when I came back, I looked at the room, and missed two bundles; the number on the paper is 620; I believe the Exciseman’s name is Thomas Cook .

Mr. Greed Q. You did not take the precaution of counting your bundles? - A. Yes, I did.

Q. I believe all paper of that description has the same mark 620? - A. No, I don’t know that I have any of the same quality as this.

Q. You have a great deal of that paper in your warehouse? - A. No, I have but little.

Court. Q. Do you know that such a name was on that paper? - A. Yes.

The prisoner, Watson, left his defence to his Counsel.

Rutter’s defence. Coming down Dean-street, we saw these two bundles of paper on a step; we knocked at the door, and nobody answered; then we were going to take them to the Gentleman and Porter public-house, when Mr. Whittingham stopped us.

Rutter called four witnesses, who gave him a good character. Watson, GUILTY , aged 22.

Rutter, GUILTY , aged 21.

Transported for seven years .

London Jury, before Mr. Recorder.

Convict Changes History

Gail Robyn Newman on 29th August, 2021 made the following changes:

source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 391 (195) -- Old Bailey Online (prev. Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 391 (195)), date

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