My 3xgreat grandmother Isabella Watkins

I haven’t yet written a full biography of Isabella but she certainly had an interesting life being born around 1823 in Hull, Yorkshire. She then moved to London where she was convicted about age 18 and transported to Van Diemens Land (VDL).

I have written quite a few posts about Isabella. Here are some of the more interesting ones: Post in 2014, Post in 2016 (some images not working – sorry) and Fiction based on a newspaper article.

I know virtually nothing about her life prior to being convicted on 29 March 1841 at Surrey assizes. But more is known once she arrives in Tasmania (VDL). Convicts had a lot of paperwork kept on them – conduct records, descriptions, indents (often mentioning parents and siblings), trial records, musters and of course newspaper articles.

Isabella departed London on 23 June 1841 on the ship Garland Grove. The ship arrived on 10 October 1841. She was sent to Mr Legge at Cullenwood near Fingal and in February 1842 was sentenced to time at the Female House of Correction in Launceston. On 7 October 1842, just one year after arriving in VDL, she was given permission by the government to marry Francis Colgrave (many spelling variations). Francis had also been a convict but was free by this time. They were married on 14 November 1842 at Avoca which is on the road between Fingal and Launceston.

Over the next 24 years, Francis and Isabella had 2 daughters and 7 sons including Francis John Colgrave, my great great grandfather born in 1843. Only one child Arthur died age 16. One daughter, also named Isabella was born in 1842, but I have not been able to find her marriage or death.

Isabella’s husband Francis died on 24 October 1890 and just over a week later Isabella passed on 3 November 1890. The funeral notice in the paper said she was survived by 6 married sons and one single daughter – this must be Louisa as she was mentioned as sole beneficiary in Isabella’s will.

Isabella Colgrave funeral 1890

Readers: Have you had a married couple die within a week of each other?