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Esther Emma Leach, born Sydney 15/5/1824, may have been the daughter of a convict transported to Australia in 1813. How do I find convict records not from the first 3 fleets?

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Welcome Peter. You will need to provide some more detail to enable people to help you with this. What evidence do you have of Esther's birth in Sydney? The NSW Historical Register of Births does not include anyone matching that name. The two Esthers born in 1824 have surnames Slater and Donnelly. Was Leech the mother's name? –  Fortiter Jan 4 '13 at 13:36
    
@Fortiter While I agree further details are required to answer the specific case mentioned, Peter has asked what records exist, apart from the first 3 fleets. –  Gerald Jan 4 '13 at 13:43
    
The birth certificates of her children give her maiden name as Esther Emma Leach and born Sydney. –  Peter Jan 5 '13 at 4:39
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2 Answers

There are several very comprehensive collections of records concerning the people exported to Australia from the United Kingdom between 1788 and 1866.

The Convict Database has been compiled from British Home Office (HO) records which are available on microfilm as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP). The HO 11 Criminal – Convict Transportation Registers series has been indexed by the State Library of Queensland and the index contains the following information:

Name of convict, including any known aliases
Place of trial *
Term of years
Name of ship and date of departure
Place of arrival
Miscellaneous notes e.g. Died at sea; Ticket of Leave, etc.
* The date of trial is recorded on the original registers and will be gradually added to this database

A search of that database indicates that there were 53 convicts named Leach among the 123,000 records and that 1812 was a particularly bad year for men of that name. There were three among the 200 convicts aboard the Fortune when it sailed in November of that year (reaching Sydney in 1813)

Title: Thomas Leach, one of 200 convicts transported on the Fortune, November 1812.
Details: Sentence details: Convicted at Middlesex Gaol Delivery for a term of 14 years on 10 July 1811. Vessel: Fortune. Date of Departure: November 1812. Place of Arrival: New South Wales. Source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/2, Page Number 85 (44) Record number: 1103363 Link to this record: http://onesearch.slq.qld.gov.au/primo_library/libweb/action/dlDisplay.do?vid=SLQ&docId=slq_voyager1103363

Title: Robert Leach, one of 200 convicts transported on the Fortune, November 1812.
Details: Sentence details: Convicted at Middlesex Gaol Delivery for a term of life on 15 January 1812. Vessel: Fortune. Date of Departure: November 1812. Place of Arrival: New South Wales. Source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/2, Page Number 86 Record number: 1101510 Link to this record: http://onesearch.slq.qld.gov.au/primo_library/libweb/action/dlDisplay.do?vid=SLQ&docId=slq_voyager1101510

Title: James Leach, one of 200 convicts transported on the Fortune, November 1812.
Details: Sentence details: Convicted at York County Assizes for a term of life on 07 March 1812. Vessel: Fortune. Date of Departure: November 1812. Place of Arrival: New South Wales. Source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/2, Page Number 90 Record number: 1101892 Link to this record: http://onesearch.slq.qld.gov.au/primo_library/libweb/action/dlDisplay.do?vid=SLQ&docId=slq_voyager1101892

Of course, all of that is based on the assumption that the putative convict father's name was Leach. If it was not, then you can use these links to run your own searches.

Update

And if it happens that Esther is actually Esther Locke (who married William Watson in 1842) then her father might well be

Title: Stephen Locke, one of 200 convicts transported on the Fortune, November 1812. Details: Sentence details: Convicted at Surrey Assizes for a term of life on 27 July 1812. Vessel: Fortune. Date of Departure: November 1812. Place of Arrival: New South Wales. Source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/2, Page Number 89 (46) Author/Creator: Great Britain. Home Office. ; State Library of Queensland. Subjects: Locke, Stephen ; Fortune (Ship) ; Convicts -- Australia -- Registers ; Australia -- Genealogy Publisher: Canberra A.C.T. : Australian Joint Copying Project Is Part Of: Criminal : Convict transportation registers [HO 11] Record number: 1101887 Link to this record: http://onesearch.slq.qld.gov.au/primo_library/libweb/action/dlDisplay.do?vid=SLQ&docId=slq_voyager1101887

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Thank you for this imformation. I have never seen this record collection at QLD SLQ. –  Peter Jan 4 '13 at 22:14
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Esther Emma Leach's father was a convict, John Woods alias Leach, who was transported for life for stealing a watch. He arrived in Sydney in Oct 1812 on the Earl Spencer. Despite receiving many Ticket of Leaves, he always re-offended and was sent to Morton Bay Penal Colony in 1834. He eventually obtained his conditional pardon in April 1847 and it is here that all documentation of him ends. His wife Elizabeth Leach came free on the Kangaroo arriving 4 Jan 1814. Her children were not baptised and therefore are not in the NSW BDM records. She died at Sydney in 1856.

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Trevor, can you cite your sources for this information? That way, the answer addresses the question of what records exist, and is useful to a wider audience. –  ColeValleyGirl Feb 12 at 11:33
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