Wednesday, August 8, 2018

H3 In The Beginning - Hobart First Settlers and Rev Knopwood

The First Settlers

First Settlers Monument in Hobart

In 1954, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip visited Hobart, and opened the David Collins Monument.

1804   1954
This memorial erected to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the foundation of Hobart was unveiled by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second on 20th February 1954.

Persons victualled at Port Phillip and/or the River Derwent 17th October 1803 to 31st December, 1804.  Recorded by Lieutenant Colonel David Collins Lieutenant-Governor of Van Diemen's Land  [ Names ]

Hobart Town (1804) First Settlers Association 20th February 2004.
This memorial stands on the traditional land of the Mouheneenner people the original custodians of this site.

Photographs supplied by Kent Watson / Graeme Saunders

The First Settlers a Memorial at Hunter Street Hobart is the location of the IXL Building, and known as the Macquarie Wharf.  A recent addition is the set of four memorials for the Convict Women and Children who arrived.
Four sculptures commemorate the convict women and their children who were transported to Van Diemen`s Land (Tasmania).   The sculptures are at the location where they disembarked after their journey.    From 1803 to 1853, almost 13,000 convict women together with 2,000 children arrived in Van Diemen’s Land.   
Hunter Street, Macquarie Wharf, Hobart, 7000

First Settlers in the Jillett/Bradshaw Family include:

·        Mathew Bowden
·       Samuel Gunn
·        Janet Patterson
·        Maria Sergeant

Many others are intermingled in the lives of Robert and Elizabeth, either as acquaintances or through marriages of their children.

Rev Robert Knopwood

Rev Knopwood's name is written on almost every birth marriage and death record of early Hobart.  That was his job, he did not think very highly of the unmarried mothers, and probably put a lot of pressure to bear and influence on their lives.  He was later appointed as the Magistrate.

His biography:

Robert Knopwood (1763-1838), cleric and diarist, was born on 2 June 1763, the third child and only surviving son of Robert Knopwood and his wife Elizabeth, née Barton of Threxton, Norfolk, England. He was 8 when his father died leaving debts of £10,000; part of the considerable family estate was sold to cover them, but Threxton itself remained and was worth £18,000 when Robert inherited it at 23. He was educated at Wymondham, Bury St Edmunds, and Newport, Essex; in June 1781 he was admitted a pensioner to Caius College, Cambridge, to study for the ministry.

He graduated in 1786, but by this time had been borrowing substantially and was said to have become associated with the hunting and shooting set of the young Viscount Clermont. He was ordained deacon at Norwich in December 1788 and priest a year later. By this time he was so deeply in debt that he had to sell half of Threxton to Clermont; but he continued his heavy borrowing and in October 1795 was forced to sell the remainder of it. It is likely that he became chaplain to Clermont and later to Earl Spencer, through whose influence he was appointed chaplain in H.M.S. Resolution in 1801. He served in the West Indies and elsewhere until in 1803 he joined David Collins's expedition to Port Phillip.

From that date he began his famous diary and continued it until his death. At what is now Sorrento he conducted the first religious service in Victoria in October 1803 and, after Collins decided to abandon that settlement, the first service in Tasmania at Hobart Town in February 1804. In March 1805 he moved from his tent to Cottage Green, the house he had built at Battery Point, 'having been sixteen months three weeks and five days exposed to the inclemency of all weathers and continual robberies by convicts and servants'.

In addition to his 400-acre (162 ha) glebe at Clarence Plains (Rokeby), Governor Philip Gidley King granted him 100 acres (40 ha) there and thirty acres (12 ha) in Hobart, Governor Lachlan Macquarie granted him another 500 acres (202 ha) in 1815, and he also had a grant on the South Esk. But despite all this his ineptitude in money matters led to difficulties. By 1816 he was forced to accept an offer of £2000 for the Cottage Green property, though this fell through and in 1824 Lieutenant-Governor Sir George Arthur acquired it for £800. He served as a magistrate from March 1804 until 1828 and despite a reputation for kindliness showed no apparent concern at the severity of the sentences he felt called on to impose. He toured his huge parish on horseback, travelling as far as Port Dalrymple until Rev. John Youl took up appointment there in 1819.

The near-illiteracy of his diary in the Royal Society of Tasmania, Hobart, is not borne out by his correspondence, and his letters show a man of finer qualities than those of the generally accepted sporting parson. The diary reveals that for many years he had a painful complaint, though his frequent indisposition was always ascribed to intemperance; but his liquor bills provide plenty of evidence of his conviviality. He entertained generously; Collins was a frequent visitor, and Knopwood often dined at Government House.

The diary is a daily record of his own doings and those of the settlement; its value lies largely in the fact that often there is no other source for the period, and one wishes that he had devoted less space to the weather; he writes of his pride in his garden, and of his affection for Betty Mack, whom he had adopted as an infant when her mother was deserted by a marine.

Henry Savery, meeting Knopwood at Government House, saw him as 'an elderly parson in a straight-cut single breasted coat with an upright collar, a clergyman of the old school, remarkably mild and placid countenance, manner easy and gentlemanly in the extreme, conversation lively and agreeable—a choice spirit'. However, he was no favourite of Macquarie, who frequently criticized his behaviour.

Knopwood's last years were saddened by sickness and poverty. In 1817 his salary of £182 was increased to £260; but in 1823 when he retired through ill health his pension was only £100, though he had his land at Rokeby. He ministered unofficially to his neighbours there until in 1826 he was appointed rector of the parish. He held this position until his death on 18 September 1838, harassed from time to time by his creditors.

His grave was unmarked until Betty Mack's daughter, Mrs Stanfield, who had inherited his estate in Chancery, erected the present monument.  He lived at Battery Point


His home drawn by John Montague, Colonial Secretary
He is buried at Rockby Cemetery.  A then and now photo.


The Story of Mary Mack and her Daughter  Elizabeth Mary Mack

(Read 4th October, 1949)

Among the actors; who played minor roles in the drama of Tasmanian history during the early years of the little Settlement on the banks of the Derwent were two women, whose names are worthy of remembrance, not merely for· their own sakes but because of their association with a man who played a leading part,  the Rev. Robert Knopwood first Chaplain of the infant Colony.

They were Mary Mack and her daughter, Elizabeth Mary, sometimes called ' Betty' or ' Betsy ' Mack.

Of Mary Mack little is known, except that she was a young woman in her early twenties when she first came on to the scene. She probably came out in 1803 on board the 'Calcutta' with Lt. Col. David Collins to Port Phillip, and thence in 1804 to Hobart 'Town. But he1· name does not appear in any of the lists available in the Mitchell Library, or elsewhere, to which I have had access.

Collins brought with him a detachment of Royal Marines, who, if of good conduct, were allowed to quit the service on their return to England. or to be discharged at the expiration of three years after landing in Australia, if they desired to remain and become settlers. Between Mary Mack and one of these Marines an acquaintance began which ripened into a romance, with a not unusual, but tragic sequel.

The young man returned to England, leaving her behind with an infant daughter of eight months old. The poor girl was destitute, and Bobby Knopwood, in the kindness of his heart and out of compassion for her distress, took her and her baby under his roof at Cottage Green, where she remained until
her  death a few months later, at the age of 27. She was buried in St. David's Cemetery, and over her grave  se1ected a simple monument, a slab of Tasmanian Blue-Gum, on which were inscribed the following words:~

October 11th 1808  Aged :27 YEARS.

This monument has had an unusual history . As the years went by, the old  St. David's Cemetery fell upon evil times, and became the haunt of the  thieves and larrikins and other undesirables, who defaced the headstones and their inscriptions. One of Mary Mack's descendants noticed that her tablet had been damaged, and rescued it and presented it to The Tasmanian Museum. years afterwards it was sent to England to be exhibited there as a sample of the durability of Tasmanian timber.

Upon its return it  was again housed in the Museum, where it has been ever since. The wood is still in perfect preservation 140 years after it was cut although it bears obvious signs of desecration by sacrilegious hands. It is the second oldest existing memorial of those in St. David's Cemetery, and one of the very few tangible links still left with those far-oft' days of Tasmanian history.


Mary Mack's infant child was born on 30th August, l806, and in due course was baptised with the name of  Elizabeth Mary .

Apart from family tradition our only source of information about her is the diary of Robert Knopwood. Unfortunately he was a bad diarist, with little literary ability, and very rarely indulging: in any personal opinions or comments, most of the entries  being bane laconic statements of fact. And so, in perusing his diary, we must he prepared to read between the lines in order to discover the motive's and background behind the incidents recorded.

The first entry about the child is dated 14th August, 1807, when he wrote:

'This afternoon little Mary, a child of one year old, came to my house, and Mrs. McCauley Knopwood's keeper,  took her, her mother being a poor distressed woman'. Mrs. McCauley kept house for Knopwood until she went to live with her husband on his farm at Muddy Plains, as Sandford was then called.

Knopwood was very often hazy about dates and ages. He was however quite certain even of his own age, and in the case of little Betsey Mack he contradicted himself, and gave her different ages at different times. But he always insisted than 30th August was the date of her birthday.

The mother Mary Mack, died fourteen months after they took refuge at Cottage Green, and the poor· orphan child was then formally adopted by Knopwood and brought up as his own. The volumes of the diary for the; next six years, 1808 to 1814, are unhappily missing, and we do not hear anything more of her until  September, 1814, when he recorded, ' Little Betty and self walked to Newtown to dine with the Whiteheads.

The Whiteheads, were good friends of Knopwood and had a farm near Cornelian Bay, and as she
was then only eight years old she must have been a sturdy child to walk so far. On 30th August, 1815, there was an entry 'My little orphan's birthday, seven years this day' (she was actually nine) and thereafter 'there were frequent entries of subsequent birthdays, which were always occasions for special celebrations.

On 28th March, 1816, Mrs. Hayes, the wife of one of Governor Collins' free settlers, gave a ball for her grand-daughters, the two Miss Bowens, to which Betsy was taken, her first dance and 'stays all night'. On her tenth birthday, 30th August, 1816, she was given some handsome presents, a cow from Lt. Governor  Davey, another from Edward Lord, and a third from Knopwood himself. They were rather odd gifts for a child of her tender age but probably they were taken care of at the McCauley farm, and brought her in some pocket money.

On 24th March, 1818, he took her for a water picnic to Crayfish Point, accompanied by three men and four native girls. The latter dived for the fish and caught a 'great many'. The following month they had another outing to the same spot, with two native girls to do the fishing.

There were other excursions, to Knopwood's farm at the Cove, and to the  McCauley farm at Muddy Plains.  Those early years must. have been bright and happy years for the little girl, as well as for her adoring foster-father.

But she was now twelve years old, and it was time to think of more serious things than crayfishing and bush walks, she must be educated and brought up as a young lady should be. So in September, 1819, Knopwood took her in his boat across the river to Clarence Plains, to inspect the Seminary for Young Ladies  at Rokeby, kept by Mrs. Speed. We know nothing about this establishment, but apparently the inspection was satisfactory, at any rate on the surface, and Betsey was duly placed under the care of its proprietress and remained there for about three years.

She was visited from time to time by her guardian, and on at least one occasion, on 23rd October, 1822, by the Governor's Lady (politely referred to by Knopwood as 'Mrs. Sorell') who he says, 'was very much delighted by Mrs. Speed's manner and the neatness of the beds and rooms'. But, alas, we suspect that this delightful manner and neatness were only window-dressing, and concealed methods and practices that would have done credit to Mr. Squeers of Dotheboys Hall. For in January, 1823, there was this entry-' From her ill-treatment I determined to take my orphan child from school'. From this bald statement we are left to imagine what poor little Betsey's trials and experiences must have been. How thankful she must have been to get back to the gentle loving atmosphere of Cottage Green!

But it was not to be for long. She was now sixteen and growing up, and  Romance was waiting around the corner. Cinderella had found her Prince.

He was a young man named Henry Morrisby, who lived with his father at Clarence Plains. He had probably met her at the Rokeby School, or at Muddy Plains. They fell in love with one another and became engaged. Knopwood at first seemed very happy about the matter, although reluctant to part with his beloved companion, and readily gave his consent to the match. He describes Henry Morrisby as ' a young man of excellent character ' and busied himself with elaborate preparations for the marriage. He officiated at the wedding, which took place at the old St. David's Church on 20th October, 1824, and entertained the guests at breakfast at Cottage Green, and then took the happy pair in his boat across the Derwent to spend their honeymoon at the McCauley's farm.

He gave them wedding presents of cattle and sheep, and persuaded Lt. Governor Sorell to grant them a farm of their own at Muddy Plains. But after it was all over the old man went back sadly to his empty house, overwhelmed by the realization of his loneliness and with gloomy forebodings for the future. ' Very unwell ' he confided to his diary ' at the departure of my only comfort, my dear adopted
daughter, E. Mack'.

In October the following year (1825) Cottage Green was to witness another interesting event, the birth of Betsey's first child. It was a son, who was christened 'Robert Henry' on 14th November. Knopwood gave a grand dinner party to celebrate the occasion, bringing up from his cellar, wine which, 'had been in the house from 12 to 14 years'. For the next year or two things apparently went well with the young couple. Robert and his mother often came to Hobart Town to visit the old man, the boy was vaccinated with ' Cow Pox ' and his first birthday is recorded in the diary.

But in 1829 there was a hint of trouble at Muddy Plains. In an entry of 10th May of that year Knopwood wrote 'At Clarence Plains. In the afternoon returned to Mrs. Morrisby. He behaved "malum" to her'. (Throughout his diary he dropped into Latin when he had anything particularly unpleasant to record.) This was followed, a few days later, by another remark, 'At Mrs. Morrisby's. He was returned and behaved very ill to my poor dear girl. I took her part. His conduct is very bad'.

And again, on 2nd June, 'My poor dear girl, Mrs. Morrisby-E. Mack that was and her little boy were obliged to return home. Mr. Morrisby would not allow her to remain. His treatment of her is shameful'. This must have been a particularly bitter blow for Knopwood, as June 2nd was his birthday, and Betsey and the boy had gone over to celebrate it with him. However the breach was healed a few months later, when he says that Mr. Morrisby had come over to tea at Cottage Green, and 'we made it up'. Knopwood seldom bore resentment against anyone for long, except for Colonel Arthur, whose treatment of him he never forgave or forgot.

The last day of that year was spent with his beloved Betsey and her friends Mrs. and Miss Chase, who sat up with him until midnight to see the Old Year out and the New Year in, and to wish him a Happy New Year. But their good wishes were not fulfilled, for the new year was to see the close of what was probably the saddest chapter of Bobby Knopwood's long life.

He was approaching his 70th year, and had for some time been in serious financial difficulties. His creditors had seized and sold most of the valuable land granted to him on his arrival in the Colony. He had been compelled to resign his post as Chaplain, to make room for Rev. William Bedford, and to take up temporary duty at New Norfolk. He had expected to be appointed permanently to that Parish, but his hopes were dashed by the arrival from England of the Rev. Hugh Robinson, armed with the appointment, and he himself was relegated to Clarence Plains. He was still occupying Cottage Green, but in 1829 that, too, was sold to one Henry Jennings, who soon after disposed of it to Lieut. Governor Arthur.

 Jennings had assured him that he could stay on there as long as he liked, but this did not suit Arthur's plans, and in 1830 the poor old man was forced to leave his beloved home and to take up residence in his New Parish, in a tiny uncomfortable cottage not far from Kangaroo Point, on the road to Howrah. By April of that year he had packed up all of 'his possessions and moved into his new abode. He was most unhappy, and from time to time would walk up to the Bluff and gaze wistfully across the water, dreaming of the days that were no more.

And then, six months later, came the final, shattering blow. On October 19th, 1830, Mrs. Morrisby, who was expecting her second baby, invited him to dine with her next day the anniversary of her wedding-but he was unwell and had to decline the invitation. The following morning, at nine o'clock, he was horrified to receive the news that she had died shortly after giving birth to a baby daughter. She, whom he loved more than anything in the world, had gone, at the age of 22 and left him to face the future alone!

For the next few weeks his diary was full of laments over this untimely and unexpected loss. On 22nd October he wrote--' At home all day in a most melancholy state. Many friends both came and sent to know how I was, including Rev. Bedford to settle about the funeral'. On 23rd October-' Preparing for the funeral of my dear and ever-regretted Elizabeth Mary Mack . . . in fact my only comfort'. There is no account of the funeral in the diary, but on the 26th he says, 'This morn early I visited the grave of my dear and ever-regretted late E. Morrisby ', and on 5th November, 'Rode to Clarence Plains. Called upon Mrs. Maum, and gave her two gown pieces for her attendance upon my dear :and ever-regretted late E. Morrisby. Afterwards I visited the Tomb'.

The following Sunday, 7th November, he rode to Clarence Plains and preached :a funeral sermon on the death of his 'dear lamented girl'. 'Everybody' he added  greatly affected by the Sermon'. On 10th November he baptised the new baby, giving her the name of 'Elizabeth Sarah Morrisby '. His many friends rallied round him and endeavoured to comfort him, but the old man never really recovered
from his grievous loss, and from time to time we find entries which show his inability to forget. Thus, on 2nd June, 1831, he wrote 'This day I entered into my 69th year [it was really his 70th] and never to my. recollection spent a more unhappy day. The death of my dear and ever-regretted girl, late E. Morrisby, was always in my thoughts, recollecting the many happy days she was with me, and her friends, to commemorate it. I expected the Rev. Mr. Connelly and another. They did not come '.

On 30th August, the anniversary of Betsey's birthday he said ' I always, when in Hobart Town, had a large party to dine with me, and how very happy we always were on this day. But now she is keeping her birthday in a happier place, by the side of that God whom she always put her trust in'. Mr. Morrisby married again, much to the old man's disgust, but later he became reconciled to the new couple, and they were very good to him, and looked after him when he went to live at Rokeby. He became greatly attached to the two children, and often had Robert to stay with him. He sent him to the Orphan School at Newtown to be educated, and took him to Reviews on the Domain and to other entertainments.

By his Will, made in 1836 Robert Knopwood left everything he had to the two children. He died on 18th September, 1838, at Kangaroo Point, at the age of 77. And so, when we look at this old slab of Tasmanian hardwood, with its· rudely carved lettering, let us remember the story behind it, and keep it as an enduring memorial of a youthful romance, and of the charity and kindliness of a man, whose frailties are too often remembered, while his virtues and good deeds are apt to be forgotten.

Mary Mack's Headstone, formerly in St. David's Cemetery, now in the Tasmanian Museum

The Story of Mary Mack and her Daughter Elizabeth ... - UTas ePrints
by WH Hudspeth - ‎1949

An interesting story, written perhaps with a little bias.

Nobody would possibly know whether Mary Mack was in any romantic attachment with any Marine or not.

Most probably she was the victim of so many other convict and young women of the time.  After all the Commander David Collins was used to having his own way with the single ladies, his surgeons had their own separate arrangements, as did many others.

Was her name Mary Mack? if she is not on the records, then not possible. 
Was she Mary Mc.....            perhaps

Perusal of the list of convicts does not provide much information as to who was the Mary Macks.
However, there is one person who seems to not be identified, and noted as "may have returned to England"

Margett, Jno: May have returned to England.  That would be highly unlikely, as he was tried at Middlesex, and originally sentenced to death, and was in the cells, that commuted to life..  He arrived on the Calcutta in 1803.

If he arrived, did he bring his wife?  Margett, said quickly equates to Mack..... depending on the dialect, and the transcription of the name.

Another poor girl, whose life is to be remembered under a piece of Tasmanian wood. 

Now to find the wood!

But Elizabeth Mack, through her marriage to Henry Morrisby, fair and squarely became another of the interesting boughs on the extended branches of the Jillett Family tree.

The Morrisby bough developed into one of the largest branches imaginable.

Lieut Edward Lord,

This article was published in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 2, (MUP), 1967
Edward Lord (1781-1859), officer of marines, commandant, pastoralist and merchant, was born on 15 June 1781 in Pembroke, Wales, the third son of Joseph Lord and his wife Corbetta, daughter of Lieutenant-General John Owen, brother of Sir William Owen, fourth baronet, of Orielton. Edward was gazetted a second lieutenant of marines on 12 September 1798 and stationed at Portsmouth.
In 1803 he joined the expedition of Lieutenant-Colonel David Collins to Port Phillip, and was in the first contingent which sailed thence to establish a settlement on the Derwent, Van Diemen's Land, in February 1804. In the same year he built the first private house in Hobart Town. In February 1805 he was granted sick leave to return to England, but after six months in Sydney he returned to Hobart with several ewes and a ram 'near the Spanish breed', the latter a gift from Governor Philip Gidley King. He was appointed first lieutenant on 3 December 1805 and a month later received his first grant of 100 acres (40 ha). By October 1806 he was the largest stock-owner in Van Diemen's Land; and within another year he was the senior officer there, subordinate only to Collins.

He again visited Sydney in April 1808, soon after the deposition of Governor William Bligh, and from Lieutenant-Colonel Joseph Foveaux he obtained, among other favours, an appointment as magistrate and a grant of 500 acres (202 ha), which he selected on the Derwent, towards New Norfolk. On 8 October 1808, soon after his return to Hobart, he married Maria Risely. He was an implacable opponent of Bligh while the deposed governor was at the Derwent from March to December 1809. Bligh complained that Lord and William Collins kept a shop, contrary to regulations, and monopolized 'the advantages of Trade to the great Injury of the Settlement'; for all that, in the same year Lord was appointed Naval Officer and inspector of public works.

When David Collins died unexpectedly on 24 March 1810 Lord took charge of the settlement and is said to have burned all the papers at Government House the same night. He applied to the secretary of state for the colonies to succeed Collins. Lachlan Macquarie, who had a poor opinion of Lord, hastily sent Captain John Murray to take charge, relieved Lord of his offices and gave him leave to return to England. There on 20 October 1812, having learned that his application to succeed Collins had failed, Lord resigned his commission in the marines; next day through the influence of his brother John Owen, M.P. (who had changed his name on inheriting the rich Orielton estates near Pembroke) he received an order for a grant of 3000 acres (1214 ha). He took 1500 acres (607 ha) near Sydney and the other 1500 (607 ha) formed the nucleus of his Orielton estate in Van Diemen's Land, which grew to 3500 acres (1416 ha).

Lord returned to Hobart in March 1813 in his own brig, the James Hay, with goods worth £30,000, and was soon on intimate terms with Lieutenant-Governor Thomas Davey, although Macquarie had warned Davey that Lord was 'a dangerous and troublesome man'. One reason for Davey's recall was that in defiance of Macquarie he gave preferential trading concessions to Lord, and bought wheat from him at an excessive price. In 1817 Lord was suspected of smuggling from the Kangaroo which Captain Charles Jeffreys had improperly brought to the Derwent and, when Lord charged Acting Commissary William Broughton with improper trading, Lord refused to go to Sydney to prosecute at the court martial that Macquarie and Broughton desired. Judge-Advocate (Sir) John Wylde criticized both Lord and those officers in Hobart who had supported his accusations, and Macquarie exonerated Broughton, describing Lord as 'vindictive and implacable'.

When William Sorell became lieutenant-governor, Macquarie named Lord first on his list of 'bad characters' at the Derwent. Despite this Lord and Sorell soon became close friends.

When Lord returned to England late in 1819 he told Bathurst that he had been 'injured to an almost incalculable Amount' by Macquarie's 'harsh and unjust proceedings' and sought redress. Although his charges were refuted Bathurst gave him an order to Macquarie to grant him 3000 acres (1214 ha) and recommended him to Sorell.

Having bought the Caroline, he returned to Van Diemen's Land in November 1820 with a large cargo of merchandise, and was at once appointed a magistrate. Soon afterwards he exchanged fourteen acres (5.6 ha) in Hobart for 7000 (2833 ha) in the interior; these and his 3000 granted acres (1214 ha) formed the nucleus of his noted estate, Lawrenny, on the River Clyde. At this time he was said to be the richest man in Van Diemen's Land, the owner of three ships, warehouses in Hobart and Port Dalrymple, 6000 cattle, 7000 sheep and 35,000 acres (14,164 ha). When the Van Diemen's Land Agricultural Society was founded on 1 January 1822 Lord became its first president and he was also an original proprietor of the Bank of Van Diemen's Land.

 During 1822 he was accused of trying to bribe the head of the commissariat, but Governor Sir Thomas Brisbane was prevented from investigating the matter by Lord's departure in the Royal George which he had chartered to carry wool to England. The ship was almost wrecked at Cape Town, which caused Lord 'serious Losses'. At this time he claimed assets in Van Diemen's Land of £200,000, and debts owing to him of £70,000. When in England, he asked Bathurst in 1823 to grant Van Diemen's Land independence from New South Wales, partly because of the difficulties in prosecuting in Sydney suits for the payment of debts; he also asked for a legislative council and the right of trial by jury in the colony. He returned to Hobart briefly in 1824, and again in 1827 when he signed a petition to parliament for 'Trial by Jury and Legislation by Representation'.

His relations were far from cordial with Lieutenant-Governor (Sir) George Arthur. Governor Brisbane spoke of his sordid interests and proposed to remove him from the magistracy. In 1828, leaving a manager in charge of his estates, Lord returned to England and settled at Downe, Kent. He visited Van Diemen's Land in 1838-39 and the tenacity of his character was revealed in 1846-47 when at the age of 65 he made his seventh voyage to the colony to press a claim for land in further compensation for a deficiency in the original survey of his Lawrenny estate twenty-five years earlier. Lieutenant-Governors Arthur and Sir William Denison had both rejected this, but despite opposition Lord ultimately won his claim in 1854.

He died at 12 Westbourne Terrace North, London, on 14 September 1859. His estate in England was valued at £2000, and he still held considerable property in Van Diemen's Land, though much of it was encumbered. In December 1824 Lord won a case against Charles Rowcroft, settler, for criminal conversation with his wife, who had remained in Van Diemen's Land and died there two months before him. Lord was survived by one son and two daughters of this marriage, and by three sons and one daughter of an alliance in England.

While in Van Diemen's Land in 1846-47 two portraits of Lord were painted by Thomas Wainewright. A third portrait by an unknown artist is in the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart.

The Late Robert Thorne-A correspondent sends us the following :-The Mercury of the 24th inst., contains notice of the death of Robert Thorne, a very old resident of this district. He was, I believe, up  till last week the oldest Tasmanian alive, having been born at Hobart in 1808. Knowing that any information relating to the early days of the colonies is always welcomed by your readers, I hope you will kindly insert the following facts well-known to many in Tasmania:- Robert Thorne was born of English parents, his father a Sergeant of Marines, was one of those who took part in the attempted colonization of Port Philip more than three-quarters of a century ago. When a youngster he ran away from home, enlisted as a soldier, was afterwards drafted into the Marines, and obtained the rank of colour-sergeant (after some hard fighting under Nelson). About the year 1802 he returned to his native village in Somerset, but his father refused to acknowledge the gallant sailor, who, however, wasted no time, in fruitless endeavours to regain the old gentleman's esteem, but consoled himself, with a wife, hurried up to London, and after a year's waiting, found himself and wife on board the Calcutta, bound for the antipodes. Sergeant Thorne and his son (an elder brother, of Robert's) are mentioned very prominently in the Rev. Mr. Knopwood's diary.

In the preface to that valuable historical record we read--''At a little village a few miles from Hobart there still walks about (1887) a hale, hearty man, who was born at Port Philip Heads, on November 25, 1803. His parents had landed there with the rest of the intended colony about six weeks before.

"On the following Christmas Day, under the gum trees, overlooking what is now called Sorrento, after the Chaplain's sermon, the assembled civil and military officers, the settlers and the convicts, Lieut-Governor Collins handed the little son of the Sergeant of Marines to the Rev. Mr. Knopwood, and stood, godfather to William James Hobart Thorne, the first white child born in the settlement.
In another month, godfather and godson, officer, emigrants and outlaws had hove up their anchors, and sailed away for Tasmania, where Hobart Thorne and Hobart Town grew up together. Hobart Thorne is confounded with Robert the hale and hearty man mentioned as living in Tasmania a few years ago. It would refer to the latter as Hobart at the age of 21 who went to Sydney, settled there and became immensely wealthy.

Robert spent   the whole of his 81 years in the land of his birth, living the greater part of his life in the Sorell district, where at one time he possessed 13 estates, and in conjunction with his brother-in-law, Mr. Frank Pitt (late Harbourmaster, Hobart), carried on an extensive whale fishery, but the tide of adversity set in, and like many another he lived to see nearly the whole of his fortune swept away. His remains will be interred in the Church of England burial ground at Forcett where his wife was buried last year. ''

Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), Friday 27 September 1889, page 2

On Sunday; 24th April, 1803, Lieut.-Governor Collins, Governor of New South Wales, came on board at Portsmouth. O'n board the Calcutta there were 304 convicts, besides their wives and children and the ship's company. Arrived and anchored at Port Phillip, Sunday, October 8, 1803. First mention of Buckley, Governor Collins's servant : Wednesday, November 2, 1803. A complaint came to me as magistrate (Rev. R. Knopwood) that Robert Canady, servant to Mr Humphrey, had promised Buckley, the. Governor's servant, a- waistcoat, for a pair of shoes which he had taken and worn, and would not return the waistcoat; but- after hearing them, on both sides, I had the waistcoat given to Buckley.'

The following is another extract from Knopwood's diary : 'First child born in the settlement of Port Phillip, Friday, 20th October, 1803; at 9, -Sergeant Thorn's wife was delivered of a boy ; the first child born on the settlement of Port Phillip. On Christmas Day,- 1803, after service, I publicly, baptised Sergeant Thorn's child

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