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James Hopkins (c. 1805–?)

James Hopkins (c.1805- ), a stocking weaver, was found guilty on 4 April 1821 at the Gloucester Assizes, Gloucestershire, of a robbery. Sentenced to life transportation he arrived at Hobart, Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania), aboard the Claudine in December 1821. He was described in 1827 as being 5 feet 3½ inches (161 cms) tall, and had brown hair, grey eyes, and a scar on his right cheek.

For absconding from the Launceston Prisoner Barracks he was sentenced to 50 lashes on 22 January 1825. In December 1825 Hopkins escaped from the Launceston Watch House with Thomas Jefferies, John Perry and Edward Russell. The men formed a gang, with Jefferies as their leader. After stealing a musket and some supplies from Joseph Railton's dwelling at Spring Plains in the Evandale area Hopkins parted company with the other two men.

Hopkins was captured in January 1826, the first of the gang to be caught; Jefferies and Perry were captured the next month. Hopkins was sentenced to death along with Jefferies and Perry but had the sentence commuted to life transportation on 12 May 1826. He was probably the James Hopkins who was sent to Norfolk Island in February 1827. He absconded from the island on 29 May 1833. His convict record simply states 'Dead'.

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Citation details

'Hopkins, James (c. 1805–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 23 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


c. 1805
Gloucester, Gloucestershire, England

Passenger Ship
Key Places
Social Issues
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: life
Court: Gloucestershire
Trial Date: 4 April 1821


Occupation: weaver