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James Ogden (c. 1768–1820)

James Ogden (c.1768-1820), a labourer, was found guilty on 20 January 1785 at Manchester Quarter Sessions of stealing a purse containing six pieces of gold, six pieces of silver, and a crystal stone. Sentenced to 7 years transportation, he was sent to the Ceres hulk in early 1786 and was discharged to the Alexander in January 1787. He arrived at Sydney in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

Ogden was off stores by October 1795 and married Elizabeth Kelso at St John's Church, Parramatta, on 6 January 1800; he signed the register, she marked it with an 'X'. The couple had at least seven children. In 1802 Ogden was renting six acres. In 1806 he was recorded as a landholder at The Ponds, holding 50 acres by purchase.

Ogden seems to have been dead by late 1820 when his three youngest sons were admitted to the orphan school. A William Ogden was recorded as having died at Parramatta on 19 December 1820. In the 1822 Muster his son James is listed as the landholder.

information from

  • Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), pp 267-68
  • Caitlin Adams, 'Lives Left Behind: The Forsaken Families of First Fleeters,' St. John’s Online, (2019), — accessed 1 April 2021

Citation details

'Ogden, James (c. 1768–1820)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 18 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Hogden, James
  • Ogdin, James

c. 1768
Lancashire, England


1820 (aged ~ 52)
Parramatta, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death


Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Passenger Ship
Key Events
Key Places
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years
Court: Manchester
Trial Date: 20 January 1785


Children: Yes (7)