James Chum Land Norfolk Island

James Cham: Convict, HMS Gorgon 1791

Convicted as James Cam. Crime: Felony. Tried: 12 March 1790, Thetford, Norfolk. Sentence: Life. James Cham arrived on Norfolk Island 11 November 1791 aboard HMS Gorgon.  

The Norfolk Island Victualling Book, 1792-1796 records James Cham as receiving rations as a Settler from 10 September 1796.[1] However the List of Settlers names as from book of rations 1795 for Norfolk Island includes James Cham.[2] James Cham was issued with his conditional pardon on 13 Sept 1796.[3]

As James Chain had been granted 35 acres of land, to be known as Chain’s Farm, deed granted in January 1797 in Sydney, This was part of a 60-acre grant originally granted to John Hayes in 1791. This land is Lot 105, Located today on the corner of Mission Road and Headstone Road on the western side of Norfolk Island.

James sold 10 acres to John Gibson in August 1802 for £15, and then another 25 acres of this land was sold to Barnard Walford for £95 in March 1805, then 25 acres to Thomas Newby on October 1806.[4]

The 1805 Muster lists James Chamm (sic) as a Settler from Convicts, off stores









James Cham and his said wife Margaret Hamilton and one child, departed Norfolk Island for Van Diemen’s Land aboard the City of Edinburgh in Sept 1808. Margaret Hamilton, James Cham’s wife a prisoner for life, his own property a joint concern between Cham and Edmonds.

This Margaret is not the Margaret Hamilton, Convict, Boddingtons 1793 nor Margaret Hamilton, Hercules 1802. Margaret Hamilton is recorded in the Tasmanian Archives as a convict, wife of James Cham arriving on the City of Edinburgh Oct 1808. There are no records pertaining to a Margaret Hamilton on Norfolk Island.

In 1810 James Cham is on a list of former inhabitants of Norfolk Island who have complained at not having received remuneration for buildings on that Island.[5]

The 1811 Muster records James Cham abode as Hobart. James eventually received a land grant at Clarence Plains. James Cham, free, salt boiler, age 60 years died December 1828, buried 14 December 1828 Clarence Plains.  There is a Margaret Cham, labourer’s wife, age 51 years, who died March 1826, buried 28 March 1826 Hobart Town, with a possible connection to James Chum unknown.

[1] Norfolk Island Victualling Book, 1792-1796, ML A1958, p. 35b.

[2] Cathy Dunn, ‘List of Settlers names as from book of rations 1795: Norfolk Island’, Australian History Research, http://www.australianhistoryresearch.info/list-of-settlers-names-as-from-book-of-rations-1795-norfolk-island/, accessed 14 October 2016.

[3] Pardons, SRNSW, 4/4430, Reel 773. P.15; Reel 774, p. 8

[4] SRNSW Colonial Secretary’s Papers 1788-1825, Fiche 3267; 9/2731 p.80 – 81; A thank you to Denise Quintal for providing us with a copy of 1795-1800 Grant Register-Register of Land Grants and Leases, p. 131; SRNSW Colonial Secretary’s Papers 1788-1825, Fiche 3267; 9/2731, pp.69

[5] SRNSW Colonial Secretary’s Papers 1788-1825, Reel 6020; 4/6977A pp.91-92.

Cite this article as: Cathy Dunn, 'James Cham: Convict, HMS Gorgon 1791', Australian History Research, http://www.australianhistoryresearch.info/james-cham-convict-gorgan-1791/, accessed [insert current date]
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