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Details for the convict Jane Fletcher (1804)

Convict Name:Jane Fletcher
Trial Place:Hereford
Trial Date:1803
Arrival Details
Ship:Experiment I
Arrival Year:1804
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Researchers who have claimed this convict

There are currently 4 researchers who have claimed Jane Fletcher

  • Researcher (449)
  • Researcher (Natalie Wood)
  • Researcher (Leilani Lavell)
  • Researcher (Kelvin Skyrme)
Claimed convict


On 2nd April 1803 the following headline appeared in the Staffordshire Advertiser: 'Jane Fletcher, aged only fifteen, for the murder of her new-born bastard child, was executed last week'.
Then, as now, the press did not allow the truth to get in the way of a good story!

Fifteen year old Jane was indeed convicted for the stated crime on 15th March 1803. She had killed her newborn son by hitting him on the neck with an iron shovel and then strangling him. Her mother Tabitha was present at the time and was thought to have encouraged her daughter in the act, she was charged at the same court as an accessory to murder. Tabitha Fletcher was acquitted but young Jane was found guilty and sentenced to death, the date of execution set for the following Monday, 21st March. Jane Fletchers execution was respited until 2nd May. Eventually commuted to transportation for life and in November 1803 she sailed on the 'Experiment I' from Cowes, under the Master Francis Withers, arriving in Australia on 24th June 1804. Two years later, on 3rd August 1804, 16 year old Jane married Rowland Edwards in Parramatta, Sydney, with whom she had three daughters and a son. Rowland was convicted and sentenced to death on august 14th 1789 in Shrewsbury for stealing a black gelding. He was reprieved and transported aboard the 'Admiral Barrington' in 1791, part of the 'Third Fleet'. He died on 28th may 1814 and a year later, now aged 27, Jane married John Allen, who himself had been transported in 1809 for stealing two horses in Surrey. With John, Jane produced another three daughters and two more sons. John Allen died in 1826, aged 56.
Jane died in Richmond Parish, in Hawkesbury, Sydney, on 23rd September 1832, aged 46.
Submitted by Researcher (Kelvin Skyrme) on 10 August 2021

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