This day gives us an opportunity to reflect on who we are as Australians. For many of us this will focus us on our ancestors who came to this land as convicts from England.
Our Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd spoke fondly of his convict ancestor, one Thomas Rudd, at an Australia Day function at the Museum of Contemporary Art on Sunday.
History Services NSW Convict Database has the following information recorded for the said Thomas Rudd:
- arrived at Port Jackson from Portsmouth on 28 June 1790 aboard the Neptune (Second Fleet). Sentenced at the Old Bailey on 23 May 1787 for a term of seven years;
- arrived at Port Jackson for a second time from England on 12 June 1801 aboard the Earl Cornwallis. Sentenced at the London Gaol Delivery on 19 February 1800 for a term of seven years;
- 1808 - sought assistance and was granted capital from John Blaxland for payment of wages;
- 1813 - subscribed to a building fund for a court house at Sydney;
- 1814 - recorded as a landholder at Liverpool;
- 1816 - required to prove he was free or be returned to government service. Resided at Liverpool;
- 1819 - assigned a convict servant, Edward McQuade (per theship Guildford which arrived at Port Jackson on 8 April 1816);
- 1822 - recorded as a landholder of Liverpool (free by servitude);
- 1824 - resident at Campbelltown - signed a letter to the Sydney Gazette asking for government investment in capital works at Campbelltown.