Convict Ship Layton 1829


Embarked: 190 men

Voyage: 138 days

Deaths 2

Surgeon's Journal: yes

Previous vessel: Guildford arrived 4 November 1829

Next vessel: Lucy Davidson arrived 29 November 1829

Master John Hurst

 Surgeon Superintendent James Osborne




The Military Guard for the Layton embarked on Wednesday 20th May 1829 - Lieutenant Miller of the 40th regiment and 29 soldiers of different corp, together with four women and three children. The soldiers were on the way to join their regiments in India.

The Layton was the next convict ship to leave England for New South Wales after the departure of the John in May 1829. The Layton  departed Sheerness 19th June and Deal on 23 June 1829

James Osborne kept a Medical Journal from 11 May to 17 November 1829.  His first patient on the Layton was Samuel Horton on 11th May who had been transferred from the Dolphin Hulk at Chatham. The surgeon found that Horton had ulcerated legs from leg irons. The legs were swollen as high as the knees from the pressure of the irons. James Osborne treated him with simple dressings and he was later taken off the ship to the Retribution Hulk on the orders of Mr. Capper.

James Osborne was also employed as surgeon superintendent on the convict ships Palambam in 1831 and the  Royal Admiral in 1835

The Layton arrived at Port Jackson on 8 November 1829, a voyage of 138 days.  Sunday the 8th November 1829 was a rainy day in Sydney with winds from the W. and NW. Temperature at midday was 23C.

A muster was held on the 11th November and the prisoners were landed on Tuesday morning 17th November 1829. The convict indents reveal the name, age, religion, education, marital status, family, native place, occupation, offence, date and place of trial, sentence, prior convictions, physical description and to whom assigned on arrival. There is also occasional information about conditional pardons, colonial crimes and deaths.

The Australian noted an extract from the Log book of the Layton: - Thursday, 4th September at 3pm caught a Cape pigeon, with a label round its neck, thus inscribed: "Symmetry, T. Stevens, bound for the Mauritius and Ceylon, all well on the 2nd September, 1829, South Lat. 30. 0 West Long. 22 deg". it appears remarkable that the Layton spoke the Symmetry off the Cape de Verde about two months before. It appears that the vessels must have kept company within two days sail of each other, or at least within two days of a Cape pigeon flying for two months. What that distance was, we have yet to learn.


Notes and Links:


1). The State Library of Victoria Catalogue contains the following information about convict William Sydenham Smith who arrived on the Layton......Contents/Summary: Letter written by Edward Fosbery of the Police Department, Inspector General's Office, Sydney 12 March 1868 to Gideon G. Lang in Queenscliff, Victoria. The letter refers to the pardon of convict William Sydenham Smith. The accompanying documents refer to the conviction and transportation of Smith in 1828. The 'additional pardon' document is dated 6 March 1868.


2). Find out about bushranger John Hobson (Opossum Jack) who arrived on the Layton


3). Hunter Valley convicts / passengers arriving on the Layton in 1829




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