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1820 Settlers - Wilkinson's Party

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  • James Cannon, SV/PROG 2 (1798 - 1877)
    1820 British Settler James Cannon , 22, labourer, was a member of Wilkinson's Party of 25 people on the Settler Ship Amphitrite . Party originated from Essex England Departure Portsmouth, 2...
  • James Smith, Snr. SV/PROG (1784 - d.)
    1820 British Settler James Smith, 36, Carpenter, together with his wife Marianne Cherer, 20, and 3 children, were members of of Wilkinson's Party of 25 people on the Settler Ship Amphitrite. Party ...
  • Sarah Fish Smith (1812 - d.)
    1820 British Settler James Smith , 36, Carpenter, together with his wife Marianne Cherer , 20, and 3 children, were members of of Wilkinson's Party of 25 people on the Settler Ship Amphitrite . Par...
  • James Smith, Jnr. (1816 - d.)
    1820 British Settler James Smith , 36, Carpenter, together with his wife Marianne Cherer , 20, and 3 children, were members of of Wilkinson's Party of 25 people on the Settler Ship Amphitrite . Par...
  • Philip John Gaugain (1788 - d.)
    1820 Settler to South Africa with Wilkinson's party on the Amphitrite.

Wilkinson's Party

Main References - The Settler Handbook by MD Nash and 1820

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Party Details

  • Leader George Wilkinson and John Morton
  • Number 25
  • Area Party originated from Essex England
  • Area Allocated to the Party New Essex on the Blaauwkrantz River
  • 1820 Settler Ship


  • Dates
  • Departure Portsmouth, 28 December 1819
  • Arrival Table Bay, Cape Town - 29 March 1820

Other party on this voyage - Nightingale.

M.D. Nash 1987 - Settler Handbook

"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 Depart­ ment. 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 Wilkin­ son 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 between George Wilkinson (who died soon afterwards), John Morton (who returned to England), P J Gaugain (who forfeited his share when he left the location), R M Satchwell and John Fournier. Mr and Mrs James Smith obtained permission to return to England in November 1820".

Members of Wilkinson's Party

[Bold links are to Geni profiles; other links are to other biographical notes]


John Cleaver 28. Chemist and soap-maker.

Joseph Cleaver 24. Chemist and soap-maker.

John Fournier 25. Midshipman RN.

John Philip Gaugain 31. Silversmith.

John Harris 27. Chemist.

John Morton 28. Farmer.

Richard Satchwell 21. Farmer.

James Smith 36 Carpenter.


George Wilkinson 21. Farmer.


James Cannon 28, Sawyer. (Later married Elizabeth Wild of Stanley's Party.)

Robert Humphrey 18 (apprentice to James Smith).

Charles Jenkins 26. Labourer

James Jenkins 28. Labourer.

John Jenkins 25. Labourer (died at sea).

James Neale 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 connnected 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.

Joseph Archer 23. Labourer.

George Bryan 15. Apprentice. John Anthony Chabaud 23. Farmer

George Cruttenden 25. Butcher.

James Harvey 26. Gardener.

Michael Madden 13. Apprentice.

Henry Mann 14. Apprentice.

Robert Self 30. Blacksmith.

Henry Simpson 15. Apprentice.

William Thorne 26. Labourer.

Richard Webb 33. Labourer.

Main source for party list

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

The 1820 Settler Correspondence - Rev. Thomas Wilkinson (father of George Wilkinson

MORTON, John, 1820 Settler

National Archives, Kew CO48/44, 559

No.1 St Martins Street

Leister Square

Received Aug 1819


I shall esteem it as a favour if you will have the goodness to inform me concerning the setling at the Cape of Good Hope as our family are inclined to go there. By sending me a proper information you oblige

Your humble servant


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