1820 Settler Party : Stanley

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Party  Stanley 
Leader  John Stanley 
Number in the Party  32 
Area Party originated from  Lancashire, England 
Area allocated to the party  Trentham Park on the Blaauwkrantz River 
1820 Settler Ship  John,    
Surnames in party  Ashbrook, Blake, Bowker, Brogden, Calverley, Cowie, Green, Mellon, Pendlebury, Percival, Savell, Simpson, Stanley, Stuart, Thornton, Unknown, Warburton, Wild
Other Information  A party of 32 from Lancashire led by John STANLEY sailed in "John". They were located on the Blaauw Krantz River and the location was named Trentham Park.
Settler Handbook Content:   No. 29 on the Colonial Department list, led by John Stanley, a merchant of 11 Mulberry Street, Manchester. In his application to the Colonial Department he claimed to have a small amount of capital and to have been known in Manchester for 20 years as a 'respectable individual'. He named as reference William Beetham of the Eagle Office, Cornhill. He wanted his application accepted in principle before he actually recruited his party of labourers, as premature public knowlege of his intention to emigrate might result in loss of business, and an equally undesirable loss of face - 'should my offer not be accepted, I should be laughed at'. He guaranteed, however, that when the time came he would be particular in selecting his settlers, whose knowledge of agriculture would make up for his own lack of it. He would ensure that they would be 'capable of bearing arms, good labourers, healthy, strong, capable of going properly through the business of a farm, or capable as mechanics to build a house or outbuilding ... Men of good character, inoffensive in manners, whose minds are not yet polluted with Radical Reform'.

This was to be a proprietary party, and by September of 1819 Stanley had engaged ten labourers who contracted to work for him for three years. A month later, half of them had withdrawn and had to be replaced with others, 'having heard that Government allows the head of a party £5 for every settler going out and when they arrive there, they are to be made slaves'. Manchester in 1819 was a focus for political disaffection, and after the infamous 'Peterloo Massacre' of 16 August, there could have been few minds left undisturbed by the ideas of 'Radical Reform'. Desertions from the party continued to occur up to and even after the time of embarkation; a fortnight before sailing, Stanley submitted the name of further replacements, with no confidence that these would be the last: 'When the ship gets into the River, I may be under some certainty of their coming - but as long as they are on land nothing can be depended upon'. His men refused point blank to proceed unless they could take with them firearms and ammunition for defence, and official permission was granted for them to do so. Less forethought was shown about the provision of bedding for the voyage out; after the party had boarded the John at Liverpool, the settlers slept on bare boards in a temperature of fourteen degrees below freezing until bedding was issued by the Navy Board, 'as it was not in Mr S's power to provide beds at his own expense'.

Deposits were paid for 11 men, and the party sailed from Liverpool in the John on 13 January 1820, reaching Table Bay on 19 April and Algoa Bay in May. Stanley and his settlers came in for much criticism from the colonial officials assisting with the disembarkation; Stanley 'caused infinite trouble' and his men were dissatisfied with him and close to 'open acts of violence'.

The party was located in Albany on the Blaauwkrantz River, and its location was named Trentham Park.


ASHBROOK, George 27. Labourer. w Catherine 24. c Mary 6, Eliza 4, George 2, an infant daughter.

BOWKER, Thomas 25. Labourer.

BROGDEN, John 22. Labourer.

CALVERLEY, Thomas 18. Labourer.

CALVERLEY, William 35. Labourer. w Jane 28. c William 14, Richard 9, James 5, Eliza 2.

COWIE, James 28. Labourer. w Mary 28. c Ann 3, Margaret.

MELLON, Hugh 21. Labourer.

PENDLEBURY, William 24. Labourer.

STANLEY, John 37. Merchant. w Sarah 27.

WILD, Abraham 30. Labourer. w Ann 29. c Betty 8, Abraham 6, Maria 3, Henry 1.

*PERCIVAL, Harriet (servant to Stanley), and child.

*SAVELL, Thomas. Shipbuilder.

*SIMPSON, Richard. Labourer.

Main sources for party list

Return of settlers under the direction of John Stanley (Cape Archives CO 6138/1,85), amended in the light of Stanley's correspondence with the Colonial Department (Public Record Office, London, CO 48/45) and depositions made on the break-up of the party (Cape Archives CO 2629). No Agent of Transports' Return has been traced showing the state of the party on its arrival at the Cape.

*Richard Simpson, a labourer, and Harriet Percival, a maidservant with a child, sailed in the John as replacements for a married man with a wife and child who deserted the party at the last minute. According to colonial records, Thomas Savell, a shipbuilder, was a member of the party; his name is not on the official list and he may have replaced Ashbrook, T Calverley or Pendlebury, none of whose presence in the colony has been confirmed.

from THE SETTLER HANDBOOK by MD Nash page 124 

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