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Richard McDale (c. 1754–?)

Richard McDale (alias Dade alias Deane), a shoemaker, and Robert Forrester, were found guilty on 30 April 1783 at the Old Bailey, London, of stealing six guineas in gold coins from a man who had shared a bed with them in lodgings. The men's death sentences were commuted to 7 years transportation to America. McDale was among 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.

McDale was ordered to receive 100 lashes on 16 January 1789 for striking Catherine Smith. He was sent (as Richard McDeed) to Norfolk Island on the Sirius in March 1790. By June 1791 he had cleared 80 rods of a Sydney Town lot and was sustaining himself. He disappears from colonial records after this. As his sentence expired he may have returned to England.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), p 229

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'McDale, Richard (c. 1754–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 20 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • McDeed, Richard
  • Dade, Richard
  • Deane, Richard
  • Dean, Richard

c. 1754
Middlesex, England

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Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years