Wednesday, 9 October 2013

9th October 1813: The 'Earl Spencer' arrives in Australia, bringing Luddites & a Steam Engine

'Part of the Harbour of Port Jackson, and the country between Sydney and the Blue Mountains, New South Wales', an Aquatint by R Havell & Sons, after Major James Taylor, c.1821
The Transport ship 'Earl Spencer' arrived at Port Jackson, Sydney, Australia in the forenoon of Saturday 9th October 1813, after a voyage of 129 days. It would be the last transport to bring large numbers of convicted Luddites from the 1811/1812 disturbances, a later ship bringing one remaining prisoner from the trials thus far.

The ship had left Portsmouth on 2nd June 1813, and had stopped at Madeira exactly a month later, before completing the rest of the journey unbroken. Four prisoners died on the trip. The prisoners went ashore 5 days after arriving on 14th October, and included 17 men convicted of various offences connected with Luddism:

Chester Special Commission:

James Bennett (death, respited)
John Bradshaw (7 years transportation)
Thomas Brunt aka Etchells (7 years transportation)
Thomas Burgess (7 years transportation)
William Greenhough (death, respited)
John Henshall (death, respited)
John Heywood (death, respited)
Samuel Lees (7 years transportation)
Richard Lowndes (death, respited)
James Radcliffe (7 years transportation)
Edward Redfern (7 years transportation)
William Thompson (death, respited)
James Tomlinson (death, respited)
James Torkington (death, respited)
Thomas Whittaker (7 years transportation)

Derby Summer Assizes 1812:

Andrew Scott

Nottingham Summer Assizes 1812:

George Spray

Ironically, the 'Earl Spencer' also brought the first steam engine to Australia.

The information in this article is from the Convict Stockade &

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