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In Sorrow Without Shame

William Crabtree (c. 1812-?)

A farm labourer from West Yorkshire, William Crabtree was tried in Durham for ‘stealing from the person’, and sentenced to transportation for Life. He arrived in Van Diemen’s Land in 1834, and stated his offence as ‘highway robbery’. He was 5 foot 7 inches (170cm) tall. His left arm was tattooed with ‘Woman heart darts E.W. 1834. half moon 7 Stars Sun Sailor’. And he bore a prominent scar on his nose.
William was assigned to the pastoralist, Mr. James Cox. Twice he was given one month’s Hard Labour, once for being drunk and assaulting a constable. He was granted a Ticket of Leave in 1842, but remained in the district of Morven, and five years later married Elizabeth Bell. In 1850 he sailed to Melbourne on the Shamrock. There is no record of his return.

A watercolour of ‘Clarendon’, the home of the pastoralist Mr. James Cox, built in 1838 on the banks of the South Esk River.  The great Georgian Regency home cost upwards of £40,000 (approximately $4.4 million today). Cox was convict William Crabtree’s master.
A watercolour of ‘Clarendon’, the home of the pastoralist Mr. James Cox, built in 1838 on the banks of the South Esk River. The great Georgian Regency home cost upwards of £40,000 (approximately $4.4 million today). Cox was convict William Crabtree’s master.

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