Convict in Van Diemen’s Land – or was he?

Richard Austin Stronnell is my great, great, great grandfather.  It was rumoured that he was a convict.  But I needed to find out for sure if the convict Richard was actually my ancestor.

How can one be sure?

My early research seemed to indicate that there may have been two Richard Austin Stronnells which seemed unlikely given the following facts:

  • it is not a common name
  • both seemed to have been born at the same time
  • one had married an Ann Carter, the other a Mary Ann Carter.

Too many coincidences?

But the main problem was that it seemed that one had arrived in Australia as a convict in 1845 and the other had arrived as a free man with his wife in 1858.

Death certificates held some clues but also some errors.  Mary Ann Carters death certificate said she married Richard in Castlemaine, yet Richard’s death certificate said he married her in England?

I was stumped until I found a record of Richard Stronnell returning to England in 1857 just in time to marry Ann/Mary Ann and return to Australia in 1858.

I have found out a lot more since my earlier post Invite to Dinner

The full story is available here

 

 

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