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Thomas Westlake

Thomas Westlake, one of 250 convicts transported on the Ratcliffe, 25 July 1848

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Thomas Westlake
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1821
Occupation: Labourer
Date of Death: 25th April, 1895
Age: 74 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 61 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to Life

Crime: Highway robbery
Convicted at: Devon, Exeter City Assizes
Sentence term: Life
Ship: Ratcliffe
Departure date: 25th July, 1848
Arrival date: 12th November, 1848
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 249 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 92, Class and Piece Number HO11/15, Page Number 316
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 22nd March, 2018 wrote:

9/4/1843 Bell’s New Weekly Messenger London, England:
Thomas Westlake, Samuel Houghton, and Mary Evans, were indicted for assaulting and robbing Samuel Barnes, and beating him with bludgeons.
Mr. Barnes is a surgeon of the greatest eminence in Exeter.  On Monday, the 15th of August last, about 11 o’clock at night, Mr. Barnes was sent for to attend a patient in the neigbourhood of Exeter.  As he was proceeding along a road which had been made across a field, the female prisoner accosted him, asking him to take a walk with her.
Mr. Barnes made no reply, but walked on, the woman following him.  He had to go round a corner, and he then observed the two other prisoners, who followed him, and he immediately felt a heavy blow on his face, wich felled him to the ground.  Westlake then covered Mr. Barnes’s face with his hands, and the prisoners amoung them took from his person a gold watch and a quantity of gold and silver.  Mr. Barnes was very much beaten with heavy sticks.  He cried out, “Don’t beat me, but take my money.”
He had may had blows about his head.  Soon after this Mr. Barnes found himself alone, and hurried towards the city, and gave an alarm.
He was bleeding much from the nose and mouth.
He has lost the use of one nostril, and his jaw is much shaken.  On the 19th of August he was shown into a room where there were 10 or 12 prisoners.  He instantly fixed on Westlake.  He then went to another room, where there were four prisoners, and he though one of them was on of the ment.  He went out of the room and was afterwards called in again, and Houghton was then present with several ogther persons, and he then fixed on Houghton.
He then saw the female prisoner, and they recognized each other.  The jury returned a verdict of guilty against all the prisoners, and Westlake and Houghton were sentenced to transportation for life, and the woman to 15 years’ transportation.

Samuel Houghton arrived per ‘Maitland’ 1843, to NSW and Norfolk Island - Mary Evans arrived on the ‘Emma Eugenia 1844’ to VDL.

Thomas Westlake was tried in 1843 but did not arrive until 12/11/1848, so spent time in prison or on the Hulks before he was transported.

Thomas was listed as 26 years old on arrival and born C1821 - he was born at Crediton, Devonshire.

Previous convictions: For anbdkerchiefs - discharged.

Thomas was 5’3½” tall, fresh complexion, dark brown hair, black whiskers, brown eyes, nail of left thumb split, small pock mark on right cheek.literate, single.

Occupation: Labourer and groom.

TOL on arrival.

26/2/1850: Permission to marry Ann Sophia Jones (Tory) - no registration found.

7/1/1853: Married Elizabeth Kenny, aged 22 - Thomas was 29 - married at Campbell Town.

TOL revoked on 30/9/1854 and 17/10/1854

23/9/1856: TOL

Nov 1857: Absconded - seized 1/12/1857

29/12/1857: TOL revoked

26/1/1858: TOL

15/6/1858: CP

1856: Elizabeth Kenny/Westlake was still alive - no date of death found for her.

C1858: Tginas firned a de facto relationship with Mary Ann Young.

7/5/1859: Virtuous Westlake, born Campbell Town, Father was Thomas a blacksmith / Mother Mary Anne Young.

20/2/1863: Thomas Murett Westlake born - registered at Launceston - father Thomas Westlake, Mother, Mary Ann Young. (Thomas listed as a Blacksmith). __ 30/7/1879 Thomas Jnr, 19 married Maria Trinder 21, at Launceston.

21/2/1867: Martha Westlake born Launceston to Thomas and Mary Ann Young - Thomas a woodcarter.

13/6/1869: James Westlake born at Launceston to Thomas and Mary Ann Young - Thomas listed as a Carter.

There were 5 children in all.

5/1/1871: Mary Ann Westlake died at Launceston, aged 30, she died of Phthisis (TB) - Contractor’s wife.

25/4/1895: Thomas died at Launceston in the Hospital, aged 75, died of Pneumonia, a labourer

Convict Changes History

D Wong on 22nd March, 2018 made the following changes:

date of birth: 1821 (prev. 0000), date of death: 25th April, 1895 (prev. 0000), gender: m, occupation, crime

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