WATERS Richard

Name Richard WATERS
Country Of Origin England
Born 1791
Died 1851
Birth/Baptism Born approx. 1791, Coventry, Warwickshire, England
Parents unknown
Apprenticeship unknown
Skills Clockmaker, Watchmaker
Work Locations Hobart
Street Address
Liverpool Street, Hobart
Marriage/Spouse Wife and two children in England
Trial 10 October 1820, Coventry, Warwickshire
24 March 1831, Hobart Town
Sentence 1820: Seven years transportation for theft
1831: Seven years transportation for receiving a hat he knew was stolen
Arrival 27 June 1821 on the convict ship, Lady Ridley
Police Number 296
Convict Assignment
Ticket of Leave
Conditional Pardon
Other Involvement and work on significant Tasmanian clocks:

May 1822:
Richard and clockmaker Charles Crowe installed the original clock at St David’s Church, Hobart (the first public clock in Tasmania). They left an inscription to record their work, ‘Fixed up by C Crowe & R Waters May 1822.’
Note: The original St David’s Church clock was reinstalled at Government House, Hobart in 1859 by Francis Abbott. 

Mid 1830s:
Installation of a turret clock at The Penitentiary Chapel, Hobart (inscribed and dated).
October 1835: St John’s Church, New Town (inscribed and dated).
November 1826: Absconded, found on the beach opposite Maria Island. Punishment: 50 lashes and three months on a chain gang.
February 1828: Certificate of Freedom, transportation sentence expired.

September 1828: Found not guilty of stealing a hat, then forwarded to Launceston to face another charge. Richard was fined ten pounds at the Criminal Court, Launceston, in February 1829 for knowingly receiving a stolen watch.

March 1834: Three months imprisonment and hard labour at his trade for insolence.

Colonial Times 3 May 1836:
‘Richard Waters, a very old hand, was charged with obtaining a valuable watch by fraudulent practices, the property of Mr Maycock. It appeared that twelve months back, Waters had repaired this watch for Maycock and delivered it. Some dispute of a pecuniary matter arising, Maycock objected to his demand, and Waters called on Mrs Maycock and obtained the watch from her on pretence that Mr Maycock had sent him for it. Waters afterward deposited the watch with Mr Ray the publican to secure payment of 30 shillings and refused a demand from Mr Maycock to deliver it. So that it appeared Mr Maycock had for a long time endeavoured to recover his watch without the assistance of the police and failing now resorted to this measure. The claim of Waters (though disputed), being admitted by Maycock, was rather in his favour upon the charge of fraud. His having afterward deposited it in the shape of a bribe was highly reprehensible. As the case appeared mysterious on all sides, the magistrate adjourned the case for further enquiry.’

Colonial Times 10 May 1836:
‘Richard Waters, reported in our last publication, for fraud upon Mr Maycock, was now ordered to be sent to a road party, being considered an improper character for town residence.’

1836: Spring Hill road party.
1837: Represented himself to be free, then assigned in Oatlands.

December 1838: Advertised opening a clock, watchmaking and jewellery business in the former premises of watchmaker John Tait, Liverpool Street.

March 1839: Acquitted with Edward White of stealing a watchmaker’s vice.

After 1839, did Richard Waters stay in Van Diemen’s Land, giving basis to the local ghost story that he haunts the tower and clock he installed at the Penitentiary Chapel, or did he return to England?
He may be the 60-year-old watch finisher recorded in Coventry, Warwickshire, who remarried a widowed watchmaker’s daughter. This Richard Waters died in 1851, recorded as 62 years of age.

Death Possibly 1851 in Coventry, Warwickshire, England
Simon Barnard, A-Z of Convicts in Van Diemen’s Land, 2014.
Trenton Firth to Graham Mulligan, Tasmania’s First Public Clock, 2017; Hobart Town Clock, 2018; Thwaites & Reed Historic Public Turrets Clock in Australia, 2020.
TAHO: CON31/1/45, CON23/1/3, CON13/1/2, CSO1/1/403, SC32/1/1 1829.
Web: Founders & Survivors convict database; Ancestry: 1851 England Census.
Hobart Town Gazette 2 September 1826; Hobart Town Courier 1 March 1828, 2 August 1828, 8 March 1839; The Tasmanian 26 September 1828; Launceston Advertiser 9 February 1829, 18 January 1830; Colonial Times 1 April 1831, 3 May 1836, 11 December 1838, 5 March 1839.