Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The marriage of Jacob NAGLE

I've been reading first-hand accounts of the First Fleet. One that I'm thoroughly enjoying is the journal of Jacob Nagle, an American sailor. His journal was transcribed and edited by John C. Dann, then Director of the University of Michigan Clements Library (who holds one of two handwritten copies).

I'll write a full review in the future, but I noted that the biographies of Nagle in the Australian Dictionary of Biography and elsewhere noted that Nagle's wife had not been identified, despite his diary indicating he married in London in 1795.

I ran some searches of London marriage indexes and came up with the following marriage at St Botolph, Aldgate in London in 1795. The signature matches that of Jacob from other documents.

St Botolph, Aldgate in London
The Year 1795
No. 29
Jacob Nagle of the Parish Batchelor and Elizabeth Pitman of the Parish Spinster 
Married in this Church by License this Tenth Day of August in the Year One Thousand Seven Hundred and Ninety Five by me A Slatt, Curate
This Marriage was solemnized between us Jacob Nagle (signed), the mark of + Elizabeth Pitman 
In the presence of Jno Taneer (?) and Ann Elizabeth Poupard (both signed)

In Dann's published transcription of the Nagle Journal, Nagle describes that he was in London after returning from a voyage to India. Nagle states (p 186, 1st ed.) that "When in London before {i.e. a previous stay in London}, I got acquainted with a family [that] lived near Stepney Church, though they came from the Isle of White [Wight] abreast of Portsmouth Harbour.  I took a liking to a daughter of Mr. Pitmuns, a lively hansome girl in my eye, and married hur. She had three brothers that I was acquainted with before."

The Stepney Church referred to is about a mile from St Botolph, Aldgate, where the two were married.

Friday, February 7, 2014

First Fleet sources

I'm interested in accounts of First, Second and Third Fleets. Let's start with the easy one - First. There is a Wikipedia page describing 'journals' that states there are nineteen known accounts, and the State Library of New South Wales has a page that describes primary accounts in their possession. Neither page seems to include the broadside published by Richard Williams, nor the account  published by an unknown officer (both were probably published in 1789). There are also abstracts of letters sent back to England published in newspapers at the time - these do not appear to be considered.

So here is a quick list I made of known accounts, and links to transcripts where available. Please let me know of any other records you are aware of! I'll try the Second Fleet next.

David Blackburn, Letters

Arthur Bowes Smyth, Journal
Images of journal pages published as 'Original Daily Journal Kept on the Transport Lady Penrhyn', F. Edwards, published 1964, London, one hundred copies printed

Transcript of journal, edited by Paul G. Fidlon and R.J. Ryan, Sydney Documents Library, Sydney, 1979

William Bradley, Journal
Transcript of journal, William Bradley, 'A voyage to New South Wales', published 1969, Trustees of the Public Library of New South Wales, Sydney, 1969

Transcript at:

James Campbell, Letters

John Campbell, Letter

Ralph Clark, Journal
Published 1981

David Collins
Published account, Pub 1798 and 1802 (combined in 1804)

1804 edition available on Google books

John Easty, Journal
Published 1965

Newton Fowell, Letters
Published 1988

John Hunter
Published account 1793

Richard Johnson, Letters

Philip Gidley King, Journal
Published in Hunter’s 1793 book, and alone in 1980 

Jacob Nagle
Published account 1840 (rare) and Pub 1988


Arthur Phillip, Published account 1790, also letters

Account available of Google books

James Scott, Journal
Published 1963

Watkin Tench
Published account 1789

Unknown officer
Published account 1789

Henry Waterhouse, Letters

John White
Published account 1790

Richard Williams
Broadside, abt 1789

George Bouchier Worgan
Letter containing journal excerpt, Pub 1978