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John Webster

John Webster, one of 300 convicts transported on the Lady Palmira [Palmyra], 04 March 1846

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: John Webster
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: -
Occupation: -
Date of Death: 28th September, 1860
Age: -

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 54 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to 10 years

Crime: Larceny
Convicted at: Surrey, Newington Quarter Sessions
Sentence term: 10 years
Ship: Palmyra
Departure date: 4th March, 1846
Arrival date: 22nd August, 1846
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 310 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 92, Class and Piece Number HO11/15, Page Number 46. Tasmanian Archives.
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

Wendy on 20th October, 2013 wrote:

John Webster’s convict record indicates his crime was stealing a Horse and Gig, which he vehemently denied. His occupation was “Grocer”. Having served a term of 15 months on the notorious rock breaking gang at Rocky Hills Probation Station at Swansea, Tasmania, Australia, he was recommended for a ticket of leave in 1848. He was conditionally pardoned in 1850 and was engaged in running “E. C. Shaw’s General Store” in Maria Street, Swansea together with his wife, Etty Dunne, a fellow convict who had been transported from Ireland, on the “John Calvin”. They married, 10 September, 1849 at All Saints Church of England, Swansea in the district of Great Swanport. Here, they lived, worked and raised eight children at Shaw’s General Store. The two storey building, although much changed over the years, is still standing.
John Webster died prematurely at 46 years of age and was laid to rest in the Anglican Cemetery, Swansea on 29 September, 1860. His grave is next to that of his 3 yr. old son, William. Much research has been undertaken by family historians and there is no precise conformation as to his actual origins, despite his convict record stating he was born 1814, in Helmsley/Hemsley, Yorkshire. The information here corresponds with the notes on this website about convict, Thomas Drewery/Drewry/Drury from Hull, Yorkshire, who was transported on the “Joseph Somes” to Geelong, Victoria. An innocent man who was charged and sentenced for a crime that John Webster had committed and who was released as an exile when he reached the shores of Australia. Much intrigue and controversy surround both men and many newspaper articles were written at the time. The complete story is too long to relate here but it is recommended that anyone researching either men would be well advised to examine the records of both, to reveal many more details. (Inserted by a gr.gr.granddaughter of John Webster).

Nell Murphy on 24th March, 2019 wrote:

Etty DUNNE (“John Calvin”) to John WEBSTER (“Palmyra”).

10 Sept 1849 - Etty DUNN, aged 25 yrs, spinster to
to John WEBSTER, aged 35 yrs, servant.  At Parish Church, Swansea, Great Swanport, east coast, VDL. (ref. 37/1/8 no. 100)

15 Sept 1854 - Francis WEBSTER, male, born at Spring Bay.  Father - John Webster, storekeeper.  Mother - Etty Dunn.  (ref. 33/1/32 no. 291)

12 Sept 1859 - John WEBSTER, male, born at Glamorgan. Father - John Webster, storekeeper. Mother - Etty Dunn. (ref. 33/1/37 no. 685)

1 May 1861 - Thomas WEBSTER, male, born at Glamorgan.  Father - John Webster, storekeeper at Swansea.  Mother - Etty Dunn.  (ref. 33/1/39 no. 1137)

John WEBSTER died 28 Sept 1860, at Glamorgan.  Aged 46 yrs; storekeeper; exhausted nervous system.  (ref. 35/1/29 no. 628)

WIFE Etty DUNN remarried - to John SPAULDING in 1862 at Swansea and they had a daughter Elizabeth.

Convict Changes History

Wendy on 20th October, 2013 made the following changes:

date of death 28th September, 1860, gender, crime

Nell Murphy on 24th March, 2019 made the following changes:

source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 92, Class and Piece Number HO11/15, Page Number 46. Tasmanian Archives. (prev. Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 92, Class and Piece Number HO11/15, Page Number 46)

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