1820 Settler Party : Wilkinson

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Party  Wilkinson 
Leader  George Wilkinson 
Number in the Party  25 
Area Party originated from  Essex, England 
Area allocated to the party  New Essex on the Blaauwkrantz River 
1820 Settler Ship  Amphitrite,    
Surnames in party  Archer, Bryan, Cannon, Chabaud, Cherer, Cleaver, Cruttenden, Donneley, Fletcher, Fournier, French, Gagiano, Gaugain, Harris, Harvey, Hughes, Humphrey, Imlah, Jenkins, Leigh, Madden, Mann, Morton, Neale, Oakes, Placey, Satchwell, Self, Simpson, Smith, Thorne, Webb, Welsh, Wilkinson
Other Information  A party of 25 was organised in Essex by George WILLKINSON, a division of five of them being led by John MORTON. They sailed in "Amphitrite" and were located together on the Blaauw Krantz River, the location being called New Essex. There, John FOURNIER directed another division.
Settler Handbook Content:   Led by George Wilkinson and John Morton, who both described themselves as farmers. Wilkinson was the son of the Rev Thomas Wilkinson, rector of Bulvan, near Orsett, Essex; Morton was the son of the steward of Lord Petre's estates at Ingatestone, some ten miles from Bulvan.

The conditions under which this party emigrated varied from the standard regulations for the government scheme. Wilkinson and Morton first applied to emigrate as members of a proposed party led by Peter Gaugain, which included Richard Satchwell. Gaugain's application was turned down, and Wilkinson then entered his name on the list of Bailie's party. He withdrew it, however, when his father, the Rev Thomas Wilkinson, submitted a new proposal on his behalf to the Colonial Department. He offered to arrange passage in a privately owned vessel for a party of principals and hired labourers from the neighbourhood of Orsett. They would proceed to the Cape at their own expense if Government would make them a substantial land grant and afford them other 'settlers' privileges'. The Rev Mr Wilkinson was warmly recommended to the Secretary of State, Earl Bathurst, by Lord Kenyon, an introduction that undoubtedly influenced the favourable reception of this proposal.

The Colonial Department agreed not only to grant land at the usual rate of 100 acres per man to George Wilkinson and his partners, but to refund their passage money at the rate of £12 per head (less than the actual cost, according to Wilkinson) on the party's arrival at the Cape.

Passage was arranged in the Amphitrite for 10 principals and 15 servants and their families. Numerous changes occurred in the composition of the party; a week before the Amphitrite was due to sail, the Rev Mr Wilkinson complained that 'the list varies daily', and it would be impossible to submit an accurate list of names until the settlers were actually on board. The party finally embarked at Gravesend early in November, taking in its baggage a portable threshing machine and water-boring machinery of a type that was being used successfully in Essex.

The Amphitrite anchored for several days in Brixham harbour, and four labourers of the party took this last opportunity to desert before leaving England. A fifth man, John Jenkins, died at sea. The Amphitrite left Brixham on 28 December 1819, arriving in Table Bay on 29 March 1820, where the colonial authorities arranged transport for the settlers to Algoa Bay in the Importer brig.

The party was located in Albany on the Blaauwkrantz River, and the location was named New Essex. No rations were provided by Government. In September 1820 the partnership was dissolved and the labourers released from their engagement by order of the local magistrate, and the location was divided beween George Wilkinson (who died soon afterwards), John Morton (who returned to England), PJ Gaugain (who forfeited his share when he left the location), RM Satchwell and John Fournier. Mr and Mrs James Smith obtained permission to return to England in November 1820.



CLEAVER, John 28. Chemist and soap-maker.

CLEAVER, Joseph 24. Chemist and soap-maker.

FOURNIER, John 25. Midshipman RN.

GAUGAIN, John Philip 31. Silversmith.

HARRIS, John 27. Chemist.

MORTON, John 28. Farmer.

SATCHWELL, Richard 21. Farmer.

SMITH, James 36. Carpenter. w Marianne 25. c Sarah Fish 8, James 3, Sophia 2.

WILKINSON, George 21. Farmer.


CANNON, James 28. Sawyer.

HUMPHREY, Robert 18 (apprentice to James Smith).

JENKINS, Charles 26. Labourer.

JENKINS, James 28. Labourer.

JENKINS, John 25. Labourer (died at sea).

NEALE, James 25. Carpenter.

Additional names

The Amphitrite was a privately chartered vessel and carried settlers for both Wilkinson and John Leigh and Co of London, as well as independent passengers who were not connected with either group. The Agent's Return of passengers does not distinguish between these categories, and the names listed below may include some of Leigh's settlers.

ARCHER, Joseph 23. Labourer.

BRYAN, George 15. Apprentice.

CHABAUD, John Anthony 23. Farmer.

CRUTTENDEN, George 25. Butcher.

HARVEY, James 26. Gardener.

MADDEN, Michael 13. Apprentice.

MANN, Henry 14. Apprentice.

SELF, Robert 30. Blacksmith.

SIMPSON, Henry 15. Apprentice.

THORNE, William 26. Labourer.

WEBB, Richard 33. Labourer.

Main sources for party list

Agent's List of passengers per Amphitrite (Cape Archives CO 6138/2,104); Colonial Department correspondence (Public Record Office, London, CO 48/46); Special Commissioner Hayward's notes (Cape Archives CO 8543).

from THE SETTLER HANDBOOK by MD Nash page 136 

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