John Matthew Richardson

Born: 28th April 1797 Slinfold near Horsham, Sussex, England.
Arrived Sydney: 30th September 1817.

Vessel: Lord Eldon.
Status: Convict - transported for life.
Occupation: Nurseryman
Married: Jane Nelson on the 13th July 1824 at St Phillip's Church, Sydney, N.S.W.
Died: 28th July 1882.
Buried: Newcastle, NSW.

After the Macquarie era, the following children were born to John and Jane:-
Matthew William was born on the 9th March 1825 at Sydney, N.S.W.
Elizabeth Melville Richardson was born on the 27th March 1827 at Melville Island.
William was born 8th October 1829 at Sydney, N.S.W.

Richardson was assigned to work at the government gardens and on the 31st January 1821 received a pardon Governor Macquarie and returned
to England aboard the Dromedary with plants, seeds and geological collections. He again offended and on 25th March 1822 was tried again for
housebreaking and sentenced to death but the sentence was remitted to transportation for life.

He sailed from Portsmouth on the Arab on the 13th July 1822 direct to Hobart Town arriving 6th November 1822. The Colonial Botanist Charles
Frazer brought him back to Sydney on the Brig Ann and he arrived there on the 8th July 1823 and became an overseer at the government gardens.
He accompanied Oxley as a botanical collector on the Mermaid when the Brisbane River was discovered and recommended as a site for a new
settlement. Again in 1824, Richardson travelled with Oxley on the Amity when a penal colony was established at Moreton Bay and the Brisbane River

Richardson married Jane Nelson at St Phillip's Church Sydney on the 13th July 1824. Jane was a convict who arrived on the Mary Ann on the 19th
January 1816. She had received her Freedom at this time. A son Matthew William was born on the 9th March 1825 and Richardson and his family left
Sydney on the 2nd December 1825 on the Phillip Dundas for Melville Island where he was to take charge of the gardens at the settlement there.

Following the birth of a daughter Elizabeth Melville Richardson on the 27th March 1827, Jane was in poor health and was given permission to return to
Sydney aboard the Amity. This permission was withdrawn as her husband had was charged with importing and selling spirits among the soldiers and
prisoners causing considerable drunkeness.

The settlement at Fort Dundas was abandoned in February 1829 and the family returned to Sydney on the Lucy Ann. Another son William was born on
the 8th October 1829. Jane died in 1830.

Richardson continued to offend but later travelled with Sir Thomas Mitchell as a botanical collector on his exploration in 1836 of the inland rivers of NSW
and the discovery of rich pastoral land in what is now central and western Victoria. Following this he received a conditional Pardon, remarried and had
another family and lived until the age of 86.

His descendants salute him!

Submitted by descendant and Association Member, Barbara Richardson.


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