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Benjamin Ingram (c. 1768–1795)

Benjamin Ingram/Ingraham (c.1768-1795) was found guilty on 8 December 1784 at the Old Bailey, London, of pickpocketing: he stole a linen handkerchief. Sentenced to 7 years transportation, he was sent to the Ceres hulk on 5 April 1785 and was discharged to the Scarborough in February 1787. He arrived at Sydney in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

On 28 November 1789 Ingram was sentenced to 100 lashes after he spent five days hiding in the bush after stealing two pounds of flour. He was to receive '50 now and 50 when he can'. 

Ingram was sent to Norfolk Island on the Supply in January 1790. He again absconded and after being recaptured was sentenced to 300 lashes. He escaped into the bush again and was to be declared outlawed if he didn't surrender by 28 August. He was being held in confinement on 1 July 1791.

Ingram returned to Port Jackson when his sentence expired in December 1791. He was sentenced to life on Norfolk Island on 3 September 1792 for breaking into the house of a convict woman and stealing her property. He returned to Norfolk Island on the Kitty in January 1793. After three burglaries there the lieutenant governor asked permission to return Ingram to Port Jackson on 19 January 1794 saying, 'He is of such an atrocious character that he would commit a similar crime the moment after he might be liberated'. His request was refused.

Ingram hanged himself on 26 January 1795 on Norfolk Island ending, wrote David Collins in his journal, 'a life of wretchedness and villany'. 

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), p 188

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Ingram, Benjamin (c. 1768–1795)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 15 April 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Ingraham, Benjamin

c. 1768


26 January, 1795 (aged ~ 27)
Norfolk Island, Australia

Cause of Death


Passenger Ship
Key Events
Key Places
Social Issues
Convict Record

Crime: theft (pickpocketing)
Sentence: 7 years
Court: Old Bailey, London
Trial Date: 8 December 1784