Capt. Thomas Butler, SV/PROG

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Thomas Butler, SV/PROG

Birthplace: Baltinglass, co Wicklow, Ireland
Death: (Date and location unknown)
Immediate Family:

Husband of Elizabeth Butler, SM/PROG
Father of John Butler; Joseph Lapham Butler; James Butler; Matilda Butler and George Butler

Occupation: 1820 Settler
Managed by: Peter Dennis..Gone fishing!
Last Updated:

About Capt. Thomas Butler, SV/PROG

1820 British Settler

Capt. Thomas Butler 43, who was Leader of this Party, together with his wife Elizabeth Butler 35, and 4 children, were members of Butler's Party of 27 Settlers on the Settler Ship Fanny.

Party originated from Wicklow, Ireland.

Departure Cork, Ireland 12 February 1820. Arrival Simon's Bay, Cape Town - 1st May 1820. Final Port - Saldhana Bay - Mid May 1920.

Area Allocated to the Party : Originally to Clanwilliam, then to the Assegai Bush River, Albany

Children :

  • John Butler 19
  • Joseph Butler 11
  • James Butler 6
  • Matilda Butler 1



No. 36 on the Colonial Department list, led by Thomas Butler of Baltinglass, county Wicklow, Ireland, a Captain in the Dublin Militia. He was recommended by Charles Grant, Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.

This was a proprietary party; Butler's labourers were recruited in Wicklow, and by the terms of their agreement Butler was to supply each family with 10 acres of land, 'to build a house on it, to crop it and stock it and to support each family until the crop comes round'. In return he was to receive 200 days' work every year for four years from the head of each family.

Arrangements were made for all four Irish parties (under Butler, Ingram, Parker and Synnot) to sail from Passage West, Cork. Under Butler's supervision, his labourers made the journey from Wicklow to Cork on foot, marching alongside the baggage wagons. Deposits were paid for 12 men, and the party embarked in the Fanny which sailed from the Cove of Cork in company with her consort, the East Indian, on 12 February 1820. The ships anchored in Simon's Bay on 1 May. It was official policy to locate the Irish settlers separately from the main body of emigrants, to avoid friction between people of 'different habits, tastes and manners', and in mid-May the ships were sent on to Saldanha Bay where the settlers were disembarked. Butler's party was located at Taaiboskraal on the Jan Dissels River in the Clanwilliam district.

The Irish settlers were dissatisfied with conditions at Clanwilliam and were subsequently given the option of relocation in Albany at government expense. Butler with nine of his men chose to move to Albany and was located on the Assegai Bush River.



Thomas BUTLER was granted the farm 'Yarrow' in 1826. This adjoins 'Melville Park', which was later extended to include Melville Park.

In 1827 BUTLER's share was sold to James WARD and Thomas DERBYSHIRE.

Cory Library MOIC 2/241 no. 49 (f). Insolvent Estate of Captain Thomas BUTLER.

On 20 Jan 1825, Capt. Thomas BUTLER's estate was sequestrated as the result of a sentence passed against him by the Court of Justice in favour of Mr. John INGRAM. BUTLER owed INGRAM a capital sum of #207.1.8, plus expenses of 89.5.0 Rixdollars.

On 17 March 1825 Capt. BUTLER appeared before the Court in person to declare that he had received a loan of 1,000 Rixdollars from the Colonial Government, as surety for which he had mortgaged his farm 'Marvillo' on the Assegai Bush River. He had not yet received his title deed to the farm.

The title deed was issued on 3 November 1826, after two 100-acre shares had been deducted from the original location for M. BYRNE and William McGEER.

On 24 February 1827, BUTLER's share (the remainder of the location) was sold to James WARD and Thomas DERBYSHIRE for #266.5.0, of which #75.0.0 was claimed by the Colonial Government in repayment of his debt.

On 24 March 1827, the rest of BUTLER's property - 1 horse, saddle and bridle; 5 cows; 2 calves; a broken cart, and a stack of barley and one of oat hay - were sold at auction for #13.5.6.

Please also see Yarrow Farm aka Melville Park.

SOURCE: Cory Library Wayne Butler


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Capt. Thomas Butler, SV/PROG's Timeline

co Wicklow, Ireland
Age 23
Baltinglass, Wicklow, Ireland
Age 32
Baltinglass, Wicklow
Age 37
Baltinglass, Wicklow
Age 42
March 8, 1824
Age 47
Grahamstown, Western District, Eastern Cape, South Africa