Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Convict Ship Surry - 1819

Embarked: 160 men
Voyage: 156 days
Deaths: 3
Surgeon's Journal: yes
Previous vessel: Globe arrived 8 January 1819
Next vessel: Lord Sidmouth arrived 11 March 1819
Captain Thomas Raine
Surgeon Matthew Anderson
Convicts and Passengers of the Surry identified in the Hunter Valley region

Convicts were transported to Australia on the Surry in 1814, 1816, 1819, 1823, 1829 (VDL), 1831, 1833 (VDL), 1834, 1836, 1840 and 1842 (VDL).

The Surry was a square-rigged transport ship. She had an overall length of 117 ft. 6 ins., a breadth above the gunwales of 29 ft. 6 ins, and a draught, when loaded, of 18 ft. She was copper-sheathed, and had quarter galleries, with a bust of Minerva for a figurehead [1].

Surgeon Matthew Anderson

Matthew Anderson joined the Surry at Deptford on the 10th August 1818. He kept a Medical Journal between 10th August 1818 and 30th April 1819. On the 11th August he inspected the cabin berths being fitted up by a party of men from the dockyard. The ship's company were busy fitting and cleaning the ship. [3]

Military Guard

A detachment of soldiers of the 84th regiment consisting of one sergeant and thirty rank and file, two women and two children under the Command of Lieut Henry Statham joined the vessel on 24th August. Other detachments of the 84th arrived on the General Stewart in 1818, Tyne in 1819 and Lord Sidmouth in 1819 and the Coromandel in 1820.

Free Passengers

On August 19th Richard Partridge and his wife and John Foster came on board for a passage to New South Wales. They were ordered to be victualled at two thirds allowance.

On 1st September, Mr. John Terry with his wife Martha, daughters Margaret, Anne, Mary, Sarah, Martha, Elizabeth and Jane; and sons Grange, Thomas, Edward and Ralph and a male servant were embarked for a passage to New South Wales. They brought their own provisions and a pair of millstones. Governor Macquarie later wrote of him....Mr Terry, the Free Settler whom you recommended to my good offices, arrived here on board the Surry on the 4th of the present month. He appears a good worthy man and I have no doubt he will prove an acquisition to the Colony. You may rest assured I shall be most happy to forward his views in every reasonable way I can... [5]

John Burrell also joined the vessel as a free passenger; and on 14th September Elizabeth Cotton and her infant daughter embarked as free passengers.

Convicts Embarked

The shipwrights had finished fitting up the prison by 5th September and the ship sailed to Woolwich where they anchored in the evening. On 7th September the prisoners began arriving from the Hulks. Twenty-five prisoners were received on board from the Retribution hulk on Saturday 12th September 1819 and then 35 more from the Bellerophon; all prisoners were in double irons.

Matthew Anderson drew up Regulations for the voyage:

1. The men were to get up in the morning and clean the prison and have their beds ready to take up on deck at 7.30am

2. Mondays and Fridays were days for washing clothes

3. On Wednesday and Saturdays the bottom boards of the lower bed cabins were to be taken up on board and cleaned

4. No cards or dice or any kind of gambling was allowed

5. No smoking allowed below decks

6. Quarrelling and fighting to be considered as great faults and any man having a complaint against another to refer it immediately to the Officer of the Deck or the surgeon.

7. Pilfering and stealing on being found to be punished

8. The prisoners were not to insult in any manner any Officer of the Ship or any of the Guard or Ship's company, but to be particularly obedient to the orders given them

9. A scheme of the mode of victualing signed by Captain Young was put up in the prison so that every man would know whether he had his proper allowance.

10. The prisoners were forbidden to sell their clothing provided for the voyage. [3]


The Surry departed Sheerness on 19th September 1818 and arrived at Rio De Janeiro 11th December, departing there in company with the Lord Sidmouth on 22 December.

Sydney Cove

Strong winds were blowing from the East as the ship sailed up the east coast of Australia on the night of the 3rd March 1819. They sighted Sydney harbour at 9.30am on 4 March 1819 and the surgeon remarked that the prisoners were in high spirits. The voyage had taken 156 days.

At 2pm they came to anchor in Sydney Cove and Captain Piper, Naval Officer came on board. On Friday 5th March the weather was rainy with strong winds. [3]

On Monday 9th March J.T. Campbell came on board and examined the prisoners as to their treatment. Several prisoners were discharged in Sydney on the 9th March - Edward Edwards, Ralph Pratt, William Clarke, Michael Brignall, Thomas Humphries, William Holford and Joseph Nedby. The Guard, women and children, were disembarked on the 10th March.


One hundred and fifty prisoners were sent to Hobart on the 12th March. They arrived at the Derwent on 17th March 1819

Departure from the Colony

The Surry sailed for England on Sunday 25th July 1819.

Governor Macquarie recorded the departure in his Journal......

Sunday 25. July !!! Early this morning having finally closed my Dispatches for the Surry now on the eve of departure for England I delivered those for the Secretary of State to the charge of Ensign King, and those for the Commander in chief for Lieut. Metge of the 48th. Regt., taking the most particular care of them, both during the Voyage and afterwards. The Ship Surry got under weigh at Noon and got out clear of the Heads of Port Jackson by 2,O'Clock! The Detachment of the 84th. Regt. under the command of Capt. Rowe, the Discharged Soldiers of the 48th. Regt., Lieuts. Metge and Bunney and Ensign King of the same Corps, Depy. Comy. Genl. Allan, his wife andFamily, Mrs. Marr, Mr. Joseph Underwood, Mr. Edward Lord, and a great many other Passengers ( - including Mr. and Mrs. Hoskings and Family ) went Home in the Surry. - Capt. Raine goes round Cape Horn - and expects to arrive in England in Four Months. [4]

Other Passengers returning to England included Richard Underwood eldest son of Joseph Underwood; Richard John Robinson, Mrs. Marr and son Charles; two sons of Isaac Nichols; Mrs. Lang; Mrs. Naylor and a number of other people including Gerald Hope who had arrived on the Surry as a convict in 1816.

Notes and Links

1). Convicts and Passengers of the Surry identified in the Hunter Valley region

2). Matthew Anderson was also employed as surgeon on the convict ships Mangles in 1820, Mangles in 1822 and Castle Forbes in 1824

3). Lieutenant Henry Statham died later in 1819... Gentleman's Magazine

4). John Terry (1771-1844), pioneer, was baptized on 17 March 1771, the son of John Terry of The Mill, Redmire, Yorkshire, England, in which county the family had also milling and other interests at Bedale, Forcett and Askrigg. On 12 July 1797 at Hornby he married Martha, daughter of Thomas Powell, a farmer of Hunters Hill, and for a number of years carried on the family business of milling. In 1818, presumably because of economic conditions, he left England for New South Wales, arriving in Sydney in March 1819 with his family, in the Surry. (Clive Turnbull, 'Terry, John (1771 - 1844)', Australian Dictionary of Biography


[1] Bateson, Charles, Library of Australian History (1983). The convict ships, 1787 - 1868 (Australian ed). Library of Australian History, Sydney : p. 172

[2] ibid., pp.342 - 343, 356 - 357, 382

[3] UK Royal Navy Medical Journals, 1817-1857. Medical Journal of Matthew Anderson on the voyage of the Surry in 1819. The National Archives. Kew, Richmond, Surrey.

[4] Lachlan and Elizabeth Macquarie Archive

[5] HRA, Series 1, Vol. X p. 141