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Mary Blay (1829–1884)

Mary Murphy, housemaid, was sentenced to 7 years transportation for setting fire to a house. She arrived in Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) in 1849 aboard the Maria. She was described as being 5 feet 1 inch tall, with a fresh complexion, oval head, dark brown hair and hazel eyes. She could read but not write. On 4 July 1850 she was sentenced to one month hard labour at the Cascades Female Factory, Hobart, for being drunk. On 29 November that same year she was sentenced to 9 months hard labour at Cascades for being unable to explain where she got wearing apparel worth about £4. On 30 May 1851 she was sent back to the cells for 7 days for insolence.

Murphy was granted a ticket of leave on 2 August 1852. It was revoked on 2 April 1853 and then granted again on 25 July 1854. She married Solomon Blay on 14 February 1853. Her certificate of freedom was issued in September 1855.

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Citation details

'Blay, Mary (1829–1884)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 25 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Murphy, Mary
  • Bray, Mary
  • Blaey, Mary
  • Blag, Mary
  • Bleay, Mary

Cork, Ireland


17 July, 1884 (aged ~ 55)
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Cause of Death


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.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.

Passenger Ship
Key Places
Social Issues
Convict Record

Crime: arson
Sentence: 7 years