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Henry Lavell (c. 1762–?)

Henry Lavell (c.1762- ), an ivory turner, was found guilty on 11 September 1782 at the Old Bailey, London, of forgery. His death sentence was commuted to life transportation to America on 10 September 1783. Lavell was one of the prisoners who mutinied on the convict transport Mercury in April 1784. Recaptured, he was sent to the Dunkirk hulk in June 1784. He was discharged to the Friendship in March 1787 and arrived in Sydney in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

Lavell was tried, along with Joseph Hall, John Ryan and Thomas Barrett, for the theft of food from stores on 27 February 1788 at Sydney Cove. Lavell and Hall were sentenced to death but after a petition from fellow convicts they were instead banished to Pinchgut Island and released on the King's birthday, 4 June.  

Lavell (as Lovell) was sent to Norfolk Island on the Supply in January 1790. By July 1791 he was subsisting two people on a Sydney Town lot, of which he had cleared 80 rods. On 30 November 1792 Governor Arthur Phillip asked that he be returned to Port Jackson. He was sent on the Kitty in March 1793. He was recorded as having gone to England in 1801 having received an absolute pardon.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), pp 214-15

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Citation details

'Lavell, Henry (c. 1762–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 20 June 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Lovell, Henry
  • Laval, Henry

c. 1762
Middlesex, England

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Convict Record

Crime: forgery
Sentence: life