People Australia

  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites

Browse Lists:

Cultural Advice

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website contains names, images, and voices of deceased persons.

In addition, some articles contain terms or views that were acceptable within mainstream Australian culture in the period in which they were written, but may no longer be considered appropriate.

These articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Australian National University.

Older articles are being reviewed with a view to bringing them into line with contemporary values but the original text will remain available for historical context.

James Tenhel (c. 1767–?)

James Tenhel was found guilty on 14 January 1784 at the Old Bailey, London, of the theft of 25 pounds of black pepper, 7 pounds of pimento, and one loaf of sugar from a warehouse. Sentenced to 7 years transportation to America he was among the prisoners who mutinied on the convict transport Mercury in April 1784. Recaptured, he was sent to the Dunkirk hulk. He arrived at Sydney in January 1788 aboard the Friendship as part of the First Fleet.

On 11 February 1788 (as Thomas Hill) Tenhel was found guilty of taking some bread from a fellow convict and was sentenced to be confined to irons for a week on Pinchgut Island. In the later part of 1789 he was working as a boatman making deliveries between Sydney Cove and Rose Hill. In April 1790 William Chaff was convicted of robbing Tenhel's house (and was executed) while Tenhel was on a boating trip. No further records have been found for Tenhel. As his sentence expired in 1791 he may have returned to England.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), pp 351-52

Related Entries in NCB Sites

Citation details

'Tenhel, James (c. 1767–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 19 May 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Daniel, James
  • Teninghill, James
  • Teninghile, James
  • Tenhill, James
  • Tenhel, John
  • Tenchall, James
  • Hill, Thomas
  • Tennehill, James
  • Tenchill, James
  • Tenninghill, James
  • Tenhell, James

c. 1767

Passenger Ship
Key Events
Key Places
Social Issues
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years