James Pitfield/Patefield/Peatfield/Pitsfield c.1796-1851
James Pitfield was born in Bradford, Yorkshire around 1796.
(Source Newgate Prison records PCOM 2/191 - see below)
He was originally know as Patefield or Peatfield - the name
changed at the time of his arrest (see below)
Possible that he was christened, 25 December 1795, at Birstall, Lancashire,
not far from Bradford, the son of Joseph Patefield
James Peatfield/Patefield is listed in the musters of the 3rd Foot
Guards from the end of 1812 and in 1815 James Peatfield is listed in a
Company commanded by Captain Masters. The company were all listed as being
"On Foreign Service" and 5 men were killed on 18 June 1815,
indicating they were present at the Battle of Waterloo. (WO 12/1817)
In the musters of the 3rd Foot Guards for 1817 a James Patefield
was listed in the company commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Aitchison. For
the period 25 December 1816-24 June 1817 he was marked "On Duty".
For the period 25 June 1817-24 December 1817 James Patefield was only
listed up to 21st July. No reason for his discharge was given. (WO 12/1819)
In May 1817 a James Pitfield, was arrested in London for Burglary.
He was detained at Bridewell Prison and transferred to Newgate Prison
on 26th June 1817.
Newgate Prison records (PCOM 2/191) state that James Pitsfield
was aged 21, born at Bradford, Yorkshire and was a soldier in the 3rd
Glos. (The Duke of Gloucester was the Colonel in Chief of the 3rd Foot
On 4th July 1817 James Pitfield was tried at the Old Bailey before
Mr Justice Parker. A transcript of the case is found in the Printed Transcripts
of Old Bailey Cases. (PCOM 1/13). He was found guilty and sentenced to
On 22 July 1817 Viscount Sidmouth, who was the head of the Home Office,
wrote to the Duke of Gloucester thanking him for a letter he had received
from him in which Gloucester had inserted a letter from Lieutenant Colonel
Aitchison. Sidmouth assured the Duke of Gloucester that the substance
of both letters would be laid before the Prince Regent in Council when
the case of James Pitfield was next brought under consideration.
On 13th August 1817 James Pitfield's sentence was commuted to be
transported for life. (PCOM 2/191)
On 8th September 1817 James Pitfield was discharged from Newgate
Prison and transferred to the Prison Hulk Retribution at Sheerness. (PCOM
On 5th November 1817 James Pitfield was discharged from the Retribution
for the Lady Castlereagh. (HO9/7)
James Pitfield was listed aboard the Lady Castlereagh November
1817 for transportation to Australia. (HO 11/2)
James Pitfield is listed in N.S.W. convict indents as arriving
in New South Wales aboard the Lady Castlereagh on 1st June 1818. The Lady
Castlereagh left after a few days and James Pitfield landed at
Hobart, Van Demeins Land, later in June 1818.
James Pitfield appears in most of the Convict Musters taken from
1818 until 1836. He was given the Police Number 36. He was employed on
"Public Works" and in 1820 he was sentenced to 150 lashes and
labour in the Gaol Gang for six months for stealing wheat from a mill.
James Pitfield, convict aged 22 per ship "Lady Castlereagh"
married 7th August 1820 at Hobart, Tasmania to Maria Pollard, convict
per ship "Janus" aged 19 years.
James and Maria had a son John Pitfield, christened
at Hobart, 1820.
Maria died at Hobart 1828.
Descendants of their son John Pitfield have been traced through
the Tasmania Pioneer's index.
James Pitfield was listed in Nominal Return of Individuals to whom
Free or Conditional Pardons have been issued during the year 1836
James Pitfield died 24th December 1851 at Hobart aged 58 years.
Occupation given as stonemason. Cause of death given as asthma.