Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Convict Ship Morley - 1818

Embarked: Voyage: 112 days
Deaths: 1
Surgeon's Journal: no
Tons: 480
Previous vessel: Tottenham arrived 14 October 1818
Next vessel: Shipley arrived 18 November 1818
Master Robert Brown
Surgeon  John Whitmarsh. R.N.
Convicts and passengers of the Morley identified in the Hunter Valley

The Morley was built on the Thames in 1811. [1] Convicts were transported to New South Wales on the Morley in 1817 1818, 1820, 1828 and 1829 and to Van Diemen's Land in 1820 and 1823.

Convict Hulks

Prisoners were embarked on the Morley from the hulks in June 1818. One prisoner John Bluer a 21 year old coal miner from Chester was held on the Retribution Hulk at Woolwich. He had been tried on 17th April 1817 and sentenced to 7 years transportation. He was transferred to the hulk on 24th October 1817 and to the Morley on 29th July 1818. By the time the Morley set sail John Bluer had already been incarcerated for almost thirteen months and by the time he arrived in Australia, seventeen months had elapsed.


The Morley departed the Downs 18 July 1818 and sailed direct

Surgeon John Whitmarsh

John Whitemarsh. R.N., was employed as Surgeon Superintendent. This was his only voyage in that capacity and his medical journal does not seem to have survived. There were 164 male convicts under his care and the men all arrived in good health.

Port Jackson

The Morley arrived in Port Jackson on 7 November 1818, a voyage of three months and 21 days.

The Sydney Gazette reported that only one man was lost on the voyage out - a black man named John Jenkins. [2]

Military Guard

The military guard consisted of a detachment of the 84th regiment (York and Lancashire) under the orders of Lieut. Beamish. Other soldiers of the 84th regiment arrived on the General Stewart in December 1818.

There was a great deal of anger amongst the guard on the General Stewart regarding their victualling by Captain Grainger of the General Stewart, and Lieutenant Beamish.  Captain Grainger later exchanged heated words on the decks of the General Stewart.

Captain Grainger sought redress from Governor Macquarie who declined to interfere in the matter advising them to settle in a civil court.

Lieutenant Beamish returned to England on the Shipley in April 1819 as did surgeon John Whitemarsh.


The Morley was advertised to depart the colony in December 1818. The former Chief Officer of the Morley George Sutherland did not depart on her. He advertised his intention to leave on the Guide in that same month.  

Notes and Links

1). Richard Ward, Innkeeper of the White Hart Inn at Muswellbrook arrived on the Morley.

2). Thomas Spicer, age 17,, warehouseman, was tried at the Old Bailey....The said WILLIAM KELLY and THOMAS SPICER were indicted for that they, on the 26th of November , at the parish of St. James, Clerkenwell, feloniously did forge and counterfeit a certain bank note, No. 61,370 (setting it forth), with intent to defraud the Governor and Company of the Bank of England (continue).  Thomas Spicer's sentence of death was commuted to 14 years transportation. He was sent to Newgate prison and from there to the Retribution hulk on 9th April 1818. He was originally to sail on the Glory, however was embarked on the Morley on 29 June 1818. Thomas Spicer was sent to the Bringelly district on arrival. The convict love token below was probably his work......

3). Convicts and passengers of the Morley identified in the Hunter Valley..........

John Blower (Bluer)
Edward Chapman
Samuel Colrun/Colbuin Coleman
John Frederick Dawson
Peter Drugan
Samuel Eather/ Heather
Henry Ellis
John Ewins
Joseph Fox
Robert Gordon / Godden
William Hilton
Jeremiah Kay/ Keys
Thomas Leonard
John Lycett
John Mayo/ Mayall
Andrew McIntosh
John Page
Thomas Plumbe/ Bromhill
John Rogers
William Russell
Jeremiah Shea
William Sweetman
Robert Tennant
James Walker
Richard Ward


[1] Bateson, Charles, Library of Australian History (1983). The convict ships, 1787-1868 (Australian ed). Library of Australian History, Sydney : pp.342-343, 382

[2] Sydney Gazette 14 November 1818