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Nancy (Ann) Grant (1767–?)

Nancy (commonly known as Ann) Yeats (c.1767- ), a milliner, was found guilty on 9 July 1785 at York, England, of breaking into a house and stealing 36 yards of printed cotton. Her death sentence was commuted to 7 years transportation on 17 August 1785. She arrived in Sydney in January 1788 aboard the Lady Penrhyn as part of the First Fleet.

On 16 March 1788, Nancy's son by Joseph Theakston, a seaman, was baptised. She then had two children – Marianne Letitia (b.1790) and George (b.1793) – with David Collins, the judge-advocate. Yeats returned to England (perhaps with Collins on the Britannia in September 1796) but was back in the colony with her children on the Albion in 1799. 

On 13 November 1800 Yeats married James John Grant, a Scottish convict and former lawyer, at St John's Parramatta. Collins had gifted his 100 acre Willow Farm property to her when he returned to England in 1796. It was sold in 1802 to John Palmer.

Yeats was listed in the 1814 Muster as Ann Grant per Albion, a widow living in the Sydney district. No further records have been found for her.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), p 397

Citation details

'Grant, Nancy (Ann) (1767–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 30 May 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Yeats, Nancy
  • Yates, Nancy

Yorkshire, England

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Passenger Ship
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Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years