Commissariat Office Robbery [TROVE]
Trial for Murder by John Gaven [TROVE]
Enquiry into Rottnest Treatment of Natives [TROVE]
Longworth departs on the cutter Typo.  The cutter was a Colonial-built vessel of 20 tons that ran a monthly service between Fremantle, Bunbury and the Vasse.
NAME Thomas LONGWORTHName variations: None encountered.
Birth Date and PlaceSee Additional Details below.
Baptism Date and Place
Marriage Date and Place
Land Acquisition in WA
Death Date and Place
Burial Date and Place
Death, Funeral, Obituary Notices
Will and Probate
Regiment51st (2nd Yorkshire West Riding, The Kings Own Light Infantry) Regiment.
Soldier No. and Rank#989 Private.
Enlistment Date and PlaceRecords not extant in Australia.
Medals, Clasps and BadgesGood Conduct Badge and 1d. per diem from 1 Jan 1846. See notation in March 1847 [WO12-6208-190].
Arrival Van Diemen’s Land: Ship and DateLord William Bentinck.  Embarked 29 Mar 1838. Paid in advance to 5 Aug 1838 [WO12-6200-191].
dep. Portsmouth 14 Apr 1838; arr. Hobart Town, Van Diemen’s Land 26 Aug 1838 [DPS].
Note: Thomas Longworth and 22 other troops disembarked on 3 Sep 1838 [WO12-6200].
Arrival Western Australia: Ship and DateRunnymede 25 Jun 1840 from Hobart [TROVE].
Military Postings within Western AustraliaPerth HQ 25 to 30 Jun 1840.
Ellens Brook 1 Jul to 14 Aug 1840
In Confinement 15 Aug to 9 Oct 1840 (see Courts Martial WA below).
Perth HQ 10 Oct to 31 Oct;  1 Nov to 30 Nov 1840 Local Government Employment, including absent without leave, 18 & 19 Nov with loss of pay.
Perth HQ 1 Dec 1840 to 28 Feb 1841.
Williamsburgh 1 Mar 1841 to 31 Mar 1842.  Dale April 1842.
Williamsburgh 1 May 1842 to 31 May 1843.
Perth HQ 1 Jun to 31 Aug 1843.  In Confinement 7 to 26 Sep 1843.  Garrison Duty 1 to 31 Oct 1843.
York 1 Nov to 31 Dec 1843.
Pinjarrah 1 Jan to 31 Mar 1844 including 2 days in hospital.
Perth HQ 1 Apr to 30 Jun 1844. On Command in April.
Rottnest 1 Jul 1844 to 30 Sep 1845 including 9 days in hosptal.
Perth HQ 1 Oct 1845 to 31 Mar 1847 when discharged. Garrison Duty Feb & Apr 1846.
Hospitalised 1846: Jun (24 days), Sep (24 days), Dec (16 days).
[All sourcing from WO12-6202 TO 6208].
Courts Martial in Van Diemen’s Land21 Feb 1840 Hobart: Drunk on Duty. Sentence: 1 week hard labour; 1 week solitary confinement; stoppages [WO86-4].
Courts Martial in Western AustraliaOffence unknown. Guard Room 15 Aug, Solitary Confinement 23 Aug to 4 Sep 1840 [WO12-6202-124].
Assault and non-payment of fine. Round House Fremantle 10 Sep to 9 Oct 1840 [WO12-6202-124 & Perth Inquirer 3 Mar 1841].
Offence unknown. Round House Fremantle 7 to 20 Sep 1843 [WO12-6205-221].
Discharge Date and Place31 Mar 1847 Perth, Western Australia [WO12-6208-190].
Age at Discharge
Length of Service


Birth, Marriage and Death records for this man are elusive.  A search of a number of databases for a date and place of birth from 1800 to 1820 in the United Kingdom has revealed around fifty possibilities, the majority of which were in Lancashire.  Similiarly a search for marriage and death dates/places within Australia has revealed no records in WA, SA, VIC, NSW, QLD or TAS.

Nontheless, Longworth is well represented in newsprint as a witness in three very newsworthy (even infamous) Colonial events, relating to robbery, murder and mistreatment of natives. This reporting is available through the National Library of Australia’s newspaper archive TROVE (see sidebar selections).  The most serious for Longworth was that of the Commissariat robbery where he was initially apprehended as the perpertrator. He then turned Queens Evidence for the prosecution, and another man – John Wade – was arrested for the crime.  In a surprising verdict, neither the alleged thief nor Longworth as an accessory were found guilty! The trial lasted 18 hours and was reported in the Inquirer on 3rd March 1841.  The final paragraph reads: The Chairman concluded by expressing the hopes of the Bench that the jury would not suffer themselves to be tired out by the extraordinary length to which the trial had been protracted, but that they would still give the case that patient and conscientious investigation which its importance required. He also purposed to read over the evidence, but the jury declared it to be unnecessary. The jury having retired for a few minutes, declared the prisoner  ‘not guilty ‘ and he was accordingly instantly discharged from custody ; the verdict excited considerable surprise.

Longworth was also mentioned at the trial of John Gaven/Gavin for the murder of George Pollard,  Found guilty, the 15-year old ‘Parkhurst Boy’ Gaven was the first European to be executed in the Colony on 6th April 1844.  [Perth Gazette 6 & 10 Apr 1844].

Longworth was posted to Rottnest from 1st July 1844 to 30th September 1845 and was thus required as a witness at the Inquiry into the treatment of natives by Rottnest Superindent Henry Francis Vincent [Inquirer 19 Aug 1846 & Perth Gazette 5 Sep 1846].

A passenger named Longworth sailed on 9th June 1849 for an unknown destination – most likely Bunbury or the Vasse.[Perth Gazette 15 Jun 1849]. He was accompanied by ‘Williams’ who may have been Private #435 John Williams another 51st soldier who took his Army discharge in 1847, and also testified at the Rottnest investigation.