Margaret Boyde (1810?-1885)

by Maureen Mann


Margaret Boyde or Boyd was born in America (sic), Halifax Nova Scotia in about 1810. She was convicted in County Down, Ireland on 5 April 1847 for pledging bedclothes and sentenced to 7 years’ transportation. She had a previous conviction for selling fowls and served four months. Margaret was one of 144 women on board the Kinnear, under the captaincy of Robert Heard with John G Williams as surgeon. The Kinnear arrived in Van Diemen’s Land on 7 October 1848 after a voyage of 113 days during which five women died. Williams reported her behaviour as exceedingly good. He had seen her twice during the voyage. The first time was on 9 September 1848 for catarrh (a two-day complaint) and the second time was four days later for a prolapsed uterus from which she was discharged 17 days later.

Margaret was described as being five feet two and a half inches (158.75 cm) tall, with a sallow to dark complexion, a large head, an oval face with black hair and eyes and dark brown eyebrows. She had a long nose, a wide mouth and a round chin. There was a scar on each arm. She described herself as a plain cook and house maid.

Margaret stated that she was a widow, her husband being Henry Richardson and she travelled with one of her children, Thomas Richardson. According to Thomas’s admission to the Queen’s Orphan School in Hobart, 12 October 1848, his younger brother Henry, aged six, had been left at Grangegorman, Dublin’s women’s prison, but it is probable he died on the voyage.  Thomas was aged 11 on his admission to the Orphan School and he remained there until 6 September 1849 when he was discharged to Henry Cook of Hobart. Margaret also said that her father’s name was James and he was living in County Down, Ireland, and that she had two brothers, William and James, and three sisters, Mary, Ann and Sarah.

In January 1850, Margaret and Patrick Daly, who had arrived per the Blenheim in 1849, were granted permission to marry. Their marriage took place on 3 February 1850 at St. Joseph's Roman Catholic church in Hobart, officiated by Rev. W. Hall V.G. Patrick Daly as a 30-year-old labourer, signed with a cross. Margaret Boyd, who was able to read and write, signed her name. Daly was transported for receiving stolen goods and money. His mother Bridget and sister Jane had already been transported to VDL on the Arabian in February 1847. Margaret and Patrick’s son, John, was born 28 September 1850, but he only lived until 31 October 1851, dying of diarrhoea.

Margaret’s only conduct offence was in December 1850 when she was charged with having a man in bed with her in her husband’s dwelling house. For this she was sentenced to nine month’s hard labour. However there is an entry, dated 28 December 1849, which states she was not to enter service in Hobart Town district. This was revoked 7 January 1850. She earned her ticket of leave 21 September 1852 and her certificate of creedom was issued to herself on 7 April 1854.

Margaret Daly nee Boyd died on Bruny Island on 10 October 1885 from decrepita aetas (old age). Richard Pybus, a friend, was the informant for her death which was registered at Kingston, Tasmania. 

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