Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Convict Ship Borodino - 1828

Embarked: 200 male prisoners
Voyage: 152 days
Deaths: 0
Surgeon's Journal: yes
Previous vessel: Mangles arrived 2 June 1828
Next vessel: Phoenix arrived 14 July 1828
Captain Richard Mentrup
Surgeon George Thomson
Follow the Irish Convict Ship Trail
Prisoners and passengers of the Borodino identified in the Hunter Valley

The prisoners of the Borodino came from districts throughout Ireland - Limerick, Cork, Kilkenny, Roscommon, Mayo, Kildare, Carlow and Meath etc. They were transferred from county gaols to the Cove of Cork to await transportation.

Surgeon George Thomson

George Thomson kept a Medical Journal from 4 December 1827 to 25 July 1828. [2]

The Borodino was reported to have reached the Cove of Cork late in January 1828 in order to embark her prisoners.

Military Guard

The Guard consisted of Captain Philip Aubin and Ensign Aubin of the 57th regiment, 48 men of the 57th and two of the Royal Veterans. Select here to find convict ships bringing detachments of the 57th regiment.


Cabin passengers included H. Thomson from England, free settler; Mrs. Aubin wife of Captain Aubin and 8 women and 11 children belonging to the troops.

Patrick Carolan, son of a convict came steerage.

Departure from Ireland

The Borodino was the next convict ship to leave Ireland bound for New South Wales after the departure of the Morley in November 1827.

She departed Cork on 11 February 1828. In consequence of damage to the iron tiller on the 21st February during a severe gale of wind, the Borodino was obliged to put into Lisbon causing the voyage to be quite lengthy. The Australian later reported on the violent storms that befell the Borodino....

The latter end of February and part of March had been distinguished in Europe by violently tempestuous weather, productive of wreck and other devastation to an alarming extent. The Ann Amelia, a transport, having on board a large detachment of British Troops went down off the Coast of Portugal, and it is feared, few or no lives were saved from her. Dismasted, and otherwise damaged ships were every day arriving in the Port of Lisbon, in which were about three hundred sail of various nations, when the Borodino left. [1]

The Borodino departed Lisbon on 16th March 1828

Arrival at Port Jackson

The Borodino arrived in Port Jackson on 14 July 1828.

By this time the guard had been on board 232 days and the convicts 200 days. This resulted in extra expenditure of medicines and medical comforts and surgeon George Thomson was required to spend more time attending to the mens' health.

George Thomson's former voyage (the England) took 135 days and they sailed direct without touching anywhere. In consequence there was no scurvy or any other disease except trifling complaints on that voyage. On this voyage of the Borodino, although only one prisoner was confined with scurvy there were a number of others who had early symptoms of the disease and who required medical assistance.

The surgeon attributed not losing any of the convicts on his two voyages to:

1. keeping them on deck whenever the weather would permit between sunrise and sunset;

2. to keeping the prisons dry and well ventilated;

3. to prohibiting the convicts from using the water closets during the day (which were badly fitted);

4. to frequent fumigations;

5. great attention to cleanliness and

6. obliging them to take as much exercise as was possible.

Muster of Convicts

Colonial Secretary Alexander McLeay inspected and mustered the male prisoners on 16th July prior to their landing and distribution. The convict indents reveal the name, age, education, religion, marital status, family, native place, trade, offence, when and where tried, sentence, prior convictions, physical description and where and to whom assigned. There is also occasional additional information regarding colonial crimes, deaths, relatives in the colony and pardons.

Their crimes ranged from petty stealing to manslaughter, rape and murder. There were also men who had been convicted of Whiteboy crimes.


The prisoners were disembarked in the forenoon of 25th July 1828 and before evening most had been sent to their place of assignment. In the Hunter Valley, they were assigned to settlers such as Joseph B. Weller, George Williams, Peter McIntyre, William Dun and James Reid.

Thirteen prisoners were under the age of sixteen. The youngest were Thomas Stapleton, John Long and Owen Rooney who were all 14 years of age. They were sent to the Carter's Barracks.

Owen Rooney's brother Terence was also transported on the Borodino. He died in George St. Sydney just one month after arrival. The Sydney Gazette reported.....

We stop the Press to report that, yesterday evening, between 7 and 8 several persons were wounded by bayonets, whilst quietly walking the streets between King St. and George Sts. In the bowels of one unfortunate man - a newly arrived prisoner by the Borodino - a bayonet was deposited! The poor man was taken to the General Hospital, and in ten minutes after was dead! Sydney Gazette 18 August 1828.

One hundred pounds reward was later offered for information as to the identity of the soldier who had caused the death of Rooney.


The was to sail for the Isle de France on 26th August 1828.

Convicts of the Borodino identified in the Hunter Valley

Barrett, William

Barry, James

Blake, Michael

Bresnahane, Denis

Bresnahane, James

Bryan, Phillip

Byrne, James

Coghlan, Garrett

Condon, Patrick

Costello, William

Cremin, David

Cronin, Michael

Custeen, James

Darby, Thomas

Donovan, Timothy

Dorney, John

Feeny, John

Flaherty, John

Forde, John

Gleeson, James

Gleeson, Michael

Goggin, William

Grimes, William

Hanley, Edmond or Richard

Hanley, James

Hanly, John

Hewson, Thomas

Keenan, John

Kelly, John

Kenny, John

Kilfoyle, Michael

Kilmartin, Timothy

Lawlor, John

Lockhart, Edward

Malone, William

Masterson, Edward

Mercer, William

Murphy, Michael

Nowlan, Patrick

Quinn, Richard

Quirk, Edward

Releghan, Lawrence

Renehan, James

Ryan, Michael

Sheehan, Thomas

Spiller, Michael

Stapleton, James

Sullivan, John

Sullivan, Owen,

Tench, William

Walsh, Martin

Whelan, John

Notes and Links

1). Political Prisoners

2). George Thomson was previously employed as Surgeon-Superintendent on the England in 1826.

3). James Bresnahane arrived as a convict on the Borodino. He was executed as a bushranger in September 1837

4). Seventeen convict ships arrived in New South Wales in 1828 - Florentia, Elizabeth, Marquis of Huntley, Hooghly, Morley, Asia, Mangles, Borodino, Phoenix, Bussorah Merchant, Countess of Harcourt, Competitor, Marquis of Hastings, Albion, City of Edinburgh, Eliza, Royal George

5). Philip Aubin was appointed Ensign 14th February 1811, Lieutenant 29th April 1813, Captain 22 June 1826 and Major 12 April 1831. He served in the Peninsula from Nov. 1811 to the end of the war, including the battles of Vittoria, the Pyrenees, 25th, 28th, 30th and 31st July; Nivelle, Nive, 9th, 11th, and 13th December 1813, besides many other minor actions and skirmishes. He was severely wounded through the left side in action at Couchez 18th March 1814.


7). Return of Convicts of the Borodino assigned between 1st January 1832 and 31st March 1832 (Sydney Gazette 14 June 1832; 21 June 1832; 28 June 1832; 5 July 1832).....
Thomas Derby - Miller assigned to John Smith at Newcastle

Michael Dwyer - Coachman assigned to D.A.C.G. Arnold at Sydney

Thomas Hewson or Henson - Stable boy assigned to Henry Donnison at Sydney

John Kenny - Ploughs. Assigned to George Druitt at Mount Druitt

Maurice Kelliger - Paviour and labourer assigned to James Walker at Wallalang

James Mahoney - Labourer assigned to George Blackett at Liverpool

Edward Masterton - Rope maker assigned to William Ogilvie at Hunter's River

Patrick Nowlan - Ploughman assigned to Francis Allman at Maitland

Michael Onion - In and outdoor servant assigned to M.D. Irving at Sydney

8). Vessels bringing detachments of the 57th Regiment........

Asia 1825 departed Cork 29 October 1824 - Captain Richard Heaviside

Asia (III) 1825 departed Portsmouth 5 January 1825 - Lieutenant Thomas Bainbridge

Royal Charlotte 1825 departed Portsmouth 5 January 1825 - Major Edmund Lockyer

Hooghley 1825 departed Cork 5 January 1825 Cork - Captain Patrick Logan

Norfolk 1825 departed Portsmouth 17 April 1825 - Captain James Brown

Minstrel 1825 departed Portsmouth 17 April 1825 - Lieutenant Henry John Tudor Shadforth

Lonach 1825 departed Cork 16 May 1825 - Lieutenant John William Donelan

Sir Godfrey Webster departed Cork 11 July 1825 - Lieutenant John Ovens

Medway 1825 departed the Downs 2 August 1825 Downs - Lieutenant William Bates

Henry Porcher 1825 departed Dublin 5 August 1825 Dublin - Captain Vance Young Donaldson

Marquis of Hastings 1826 departed Portsmouth 22 August 1825 - Ensign Stewart

Mangles 1826 departed Cork 23 October 1825 - Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Shadforth

Sesostris 1826 departed Portsmouth 30 November 1825 - Major John Campbell

Prince Regent 1827 departed London 11 June 1827 - Lieutenant Campbell

Morley 1828 departed Dublin 3 November 1827 - Captain Robert Hunt

Borodino 1828 departed Cork 11 February 1828 Cork - Captain Philip Aubyn

Mangles 1828 departed Dublin 23 February 1828 Dublin- Lieut. Hill and Adjutant Lieut. Kidd

Bussorah Merchant 1828 departed London 27 March 1828 - Captain Burton Daveney (+ 1 soldier)

Marquis of Hastings 1828 departed Portsmouth 1828 30 June 1828 - Colonel Allen

Asia 1828 departed London 23 November 1828 - Lieutenant George Edwards

9). National Archives - Description: Medical and surgical journal of the Borodino convict ship for 4 December 1827 to 25 July 1828 by George Thomson, surgeon and superintendent, during which time the said ship was employed in a voyage to New South Wales


[1] The Australian 16 July 1828

[2] UK, Royal Navy Medical Journals, 1817-1857. Medical Journal of George Thomson on the voyage of the Borodino in 1828. The National Archives. Kew, Richmond, Surrey.

[3] Bateson, Charles Library of Australian History (1983). The convict ships, 1787-1868 (Australian ed). Library of Australian History, Sydney : pp.348-349, 386