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William Blatherhorn (c. 1759–?)

William Blatherhorn (indicted under this name but used the surname Beans and Fisher on other occasions) may have been the William Beans who was convicted at the Old Bailey, London, on 21 October 1778 of the theft of 28 pounds of sugar and sent to the Marine Society established to take in orphans and vagabonds for naval training.

On 26 February 1783 Blatherhorn was sentenced to 7 years transportation at the Old Bailey for stealing several yards of printed cotton and 12 cotton handkerchiefs from a linen draper. Recaptured following the convict mutiny on the Swift transport in 1783 his death sentence was commuted to life transportation. In March 1784 he embarked on the Mercury transport for America and was again recaptured after a convict mutiny. He received another death sentence which was again commuted to life transportation and he was sent to the Dunkirk hulk in August 1784. He arrived in Sydney in January 1788 aboard the Charlotte as part of the First Fleet. His surname appeared as Fisher in the indents.

In March 1790, as Blatherhorn, he was sent to Norfolk Island on the Supply. As Fisher he received 50 lashes on 10 May 1790 for concealing fish while he served in the boat's crew. By July 1791 he was supporting two people on a Sydney Town lot, with 80 rods cleared, and was sharing a cow with Mary Randall and William Brown. By 20 July 1794 Lieutenant Governor Philip Gidley King had asked for a pardon on his behalf  as he had been useful and well-behaved as an overseer. As Beans, Blatherhorn, Fisher, he was granted a conditional pardon on 12 December 1794.

By 1805 he was recorded as a constable, with a wife, Mary Randall, and child. In 1812 he was recorded as having a wife; one of three children were living with them.

Blatherhorn (as Fisher) left Norfolk Island on the Lady Nelson in January 1813 with his wife (but no children) for Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania), where he held a 50 acre land grant at New Norfolk.

No further information is known about Blatherhorn.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), pp 38-39

Citation details

'Blatherhorn, William (c. 1759–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 18 June 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Beans, William
  • Fisher, William
  • Bladderhorn, William
  • Blatherstone, William
  • Blatherhome, William

c. 1759

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

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Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years