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The Convict's Girl and the Canton Man

John Hutt (1812-1872)

In 1830 ploughman John Hutt went before the Essex court for ‘stealing cattle’. He had five priors, including assault, and twice ‘stealing fowls’. Given his record, John was sentenced to death by hanging, later commuted to transportation for Life. He was illiterate, but his tattooed right arm featured the initials ‘S.R.’. He was just 20 years old.
In Van Diemen’s Land John’s run continued. He was lashed, and given long periods of Hard Labour. In 1835 he was charged with ‘stealing an iron pot & bag of flour from a hut belonging to the V.D.L. Co’ and was sent to Port Arthur. Finally in 1845, after fourteen years in the Colony, he was recommended for a Conditional Pardon.
John’s pardon coincided with his marriage to Martha Hodgson. They settled at Broadmarsh and raised a family of ten children.

An illustration by Edward Backhouse of a convict chain gang, similar to the one that John Hutt would have been assigned to for his continued bad behaviour in Van Diemen's Land
An illustration by Edward Backhouse of a convict chain gang, similar to the one that John Hutt would have been assigned to for his continued bad behaviour in Van Diemen's Land

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