Prisoner John NOWLAN alias DOWLING 1870-1876

GOVERNMENT CONTRACTORS stenographers and photographers

In 1873, stenographic services were not paid for by the colonial governments of Tasmania or NSW. Transcriptions of Parliamentary debates, of Supreme Court trials, of Governors’ levees and dinners held by the colonial elite were provided by freelance journalists who syndicated their reports to the local and intercolonial press. Despite requests from public service officials to the Tasmanian Colonial Treasurer for the funding of a government reporter in 1873, no provision was made in the estimates that year or next, nor indeed for supporting a Hansard service. Tasmania’s Hansard did not officially commence until mid-1979, such was the trust placed in Mercury reprints.

He (Mr. lnnes) thought it unfortunate that they had not a Hansard, in order that they might have an accurate and reliable record of what took place in that House. In the absence of that, however, he had referred to the journals to what he said on that occasion. (House of Assembly, Mercury Sat 19 Jul 1873)

The author of a letter to the editor of the Tasmanian Tribune, (Tue 25 August 1873) writing under the pseudonym “Monitor” made a case for the appointment of a Government stenographer on three grounds: expediency, impartiality, and accuracy: expediency, in reducing time spent on recording government returns from two days to two hours; impartiality, in forestalling personal bias and vested interests in decisions made by the Board of Investigations into suspensions of officials; and accuracy in recording in full all details of judgments in Supreme Court trials. “Monitor” also made the case for the records to be offered to lawyers etc as compilations for future reference, their purchase a means to off-set costs to the Treasury for their production. Belief in the realism of photography ensured its adaption to the judiciary process.

The South Australian government also stalled on the full-time appointment of a government reporter with shorthand skills, employing stenographers as well as photographers on a per contract basis instead. Frazer Crawford (1829-1890), for example, was commissioned by the Surveyor-General’s Department to photograph prisoners incarcerated at the city Gaol and Yalta Stockade in 1867. He bought a 16 x 18-inch camera for the purpose. In Tasmania, commercial photographer Thomas J. Nevin was contracted under a similar arrangement from 1872 to photograph prisoners incarcerated at the Port Arthur penitentiary and House of Corrections, Hobart Gaol, as well as prisoners convicted at Supreme Court trials and those discharged at the Mayor’s Court in the Hobart Town Hall, consolidating his commission from 1868 with the Lands and Survey Dept.

Prisoner DOWLING, John, also recorded as John NOWLAN
Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery Collection Ref: Q15586
Photographer: Thomas J. Nevin, December 1874

Verso: Prisoner DOWLING, John, also recorded as John NOWLAN
Not “Taken at Port Arthur”; taken at the Mayor’s Court, December 1874
Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery Collection Ref: Q15586
Photographer: Thomas J. Nevin

This prisoner stated that he arrived free in Tasmania as a sailor on the Bangalore with the name John Dowling, but he might have arrived as a convict with the name John Nowlan on the transport London in March 1851. Shipping documents testifying to his arrival on the Bangalore at any port and under any circumstance unfortunately, if true, are not extant. He was sentenced to five years in March 1870 for indecent assault as John Dowling. He was photographed as John Dowling by T. J. Nevin on release from the House of Corrections, Hobart in December 1874, and convicted again in February 1875 for larceny. A year later, in February 1876 he was convicted at the Supreme Court, Hobart, for rape of a girl between 10-11 yrs old, this time as John Nowlan, alias John Dowling. The sentence for rape was death, commuted to life imprisonment. John Nowlan alias John Dowling was sent to the Port Arthur prison on 25th February 1876 and transferred back to the House of Corrections, Hobart Gaol, Campbell St. on 17th April 1877. A prisoner who called himself John Dowling died at the New Town Charitable Institution, Hobart in 1906 of senilis.

The Mugshot
Thomas J. Nevin photographed this prisoner as John Dowling at the Mayor’s Court, December 1874 on Dowling receiving a certificate of freedom. This photograph is now held in the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery Collection (Ref: Q15586). It was originally acquired by convictarian and landscape photographer John Watt Beattie from government estrays in the early 1900s for display in his “Port Arthur Museum” located in Hobart and for inclusion in travelling exhibitions associated with the fake convict hulk “Success to Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Hobart.

J. W. Beattie’s collection of more that 300 Tasmanian prisoner mugshots, taken originally by T. J. Nevin in the 1870s, including this one of John Nowlan as Dowling, was acquired by the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston, Tasmania (QVMAG) in the 1930s. The capture by Nevin on glass in the one and only sitting with Dowling in 1874 was printed as a sepia cdv in a buff mount to be pasted to the prisoner’s rap sheet in the first instance, its principal use. When Beattie organised exhibitions of these mugshots in the early 1900s, the versos of at least two hundred mugshots were duly inscribed with this fake information – “Taken at Port Arthur 1874” – purely to whet the appetite of tourists taking penal heritage tours to Port Arthur. As artefacts associated with Marcus Clarke’s novel, For The Term of His Natural Life, published in 1874, which was filmed at the Port Arthur prison in the late 1920s, these mugshots were re-invented with false information to heighten the tourist’s experience – a commercial imperative which has certainly waxed rather than waned in recent decades.

Frame-Up at the TMAG
In 1983, this mugshot of John Dowling and fifty or more were removed from Beattie’s collection at the QVMAG in Launceston and taken down to the Port Arthur prison site for an exhibition. It was not returned to the QVMAG, deposited instead along with the fifty or more at the TMAG in Hobart. Already compromised by being removed from its original accession in the Beattie Collection at Launceston, its integrity as a vernacular police document was further violated with a fake photographer attribution to the Port Arthur prison’s commandant A. H. Boyd, originating from his descendants wishing to launch him into the history books as some sort of photographer/artist.

In the late 1990s, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery constructed four wooden-framed collages under glass from their collection of Thomas Nevin’s prisoner mugshots for an exhibition titled Mirror with a Memory at the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, in 2000. John Dowling’s image was placed in the bottom row, centre in one of the frames (see below). . However, for reasons best described as blind-sided or parochially naive, the TMAG staff who chose these mugshots sent the four frames to Canberra – five cdvs in the first, six per frame in the other three – with labels on the back of each wooden frame stating quite clearly that the photographs were attributed to A. H. Boyd, the much despised Commandant of the Port Arthur prison who was not a photographer by any definition of the term, nor an engineer despite any pretension on his part and especially despite the social pretensions of his descendants who began circulating the photographer attribution as a rumour in the 1980s to compensate no doubt for Boyd’s vile reputation.

Top, left to right: prisoners James Glenn, William Ryan, Alfred Doran
Bottom, left to right: prisoners William Dawson, John Dowling, James Merchant

Photos recto and verso copyright © KLW NFC Imprint 2014-2015
Taken at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, 10 November 2014

Transportation and Police Records
The document below, from the Archives Office of Tasmania Hobart Gaol book recorded that a prisoner named John Dowling stated he had arrived “free” as a sailor on the Bangalore. He was tried at Launceston on 30th March 1870, sentenced to 5 years for indecent assault. He arrived at the Port Arthur prison on 26th April 1870, received at the House of Corrections Hobart on 20th December 1873 and discharged to freedom on 20th December 1874. He was tried for rape of a young girl at the Supreme Court Hobart with the name John Nowlan alias John Dowling on 10th February 1876. The sentence of death for rape was commuted to life in prison.

Archives Office of Tasmania
Record: CON37-1-10 Image 458
Name: Nowlan, John
Record Type: Convicts
Also known as: Dowling, John
Ship: Bangalore
Remarks: Tried Launceston Mar 1870
Index number: 53297
Record ID:NAME_INDEXES:1422829

The header of this record contains these details:

John Nowlan alias Dowling “Bangalore”
Arrived  P.A. 25th Feby 1876
Rape upon a Girl between 10 & 11 years of Age.
Tried Hobt S.C. 10th February 1876 Sentence “Life” (commutation)

Nowlan, John alias Dowling – Folio 67
Item: CON94-1-2
Conduct Port Arthur Register Con 94-1-2 1873-76

Press and Police Gazette Notices
The prisoner called John Dowling, ship not listed, free, was convicted in the Recorder’s Court, Launceston, on 30th 1870. He was discharged as John Dowling in January 1875 and reconvicted days later as John Dowling for larceny, sentenced to six months and discharged in July 1875, but when he was convicted for the rape of a child in 1876, the police noted his name for the first time as John Nowlan, and John Dowling as his alias.

Source: Tasmania Reports for Police, J. Barnard Gov’t printer


Launceston, Wednesday, 30th March. (Before the Recorder, J. Whitefoord, Esq.)
The court was held at the Police Office, and was opened at 10 o’clock. The Solicitor-General, R. P. Adams, Esq., conducted the Crown prosecutions.
INDECENT ASSAULT. John Dowling was charged with having on the 8th January assaulted Deloranie Boss, a girl under 12 years of age, with intent to commit a rape ; in a second count he was charged with indecently assaulting the girl. He pleaded not guilty, and was defended by Mr Crisp.
Jury : Messrs Philip Pitt (foreman), Geo. Scott, jun., Thomas Ridge, John Bennett, James Cavanagh, W. F. Wathen, John Kilgariff, John Frost, Thomas Clarke, Samuel French, Thomas Bryant, Benjamin Williams. . The witnesses examined were — Deloranie Boss, Jane Thomas, and Elias Boss, the father of the girl : at least he said he believed so, but that it was difficult for a father to swear to his own child; as he appeared so doubtful on this material point, the Solicitor-General did not trouble him with many more questions.
It appeared that the defendant had been drinking at Williams’s public-house, near the Don, and the girl having been sent on a message three miles from home, called at the public-house and had dinner there. The defendant had dined first. He said, ‘Here you are,’ and gave the girl some lollies. The girl left the public-house in company with a much younger sister, named Corolando La-? a and they were on their way to their aunt’s, about half a mile off, when, they looked back and saw the defendant following them. They then began to run; the defendant fol-lowed, ?me up with them, and pushed the elder one down. The younger one ran back to Williams’s public-house, and told Jane Thomas, housekeeper to Mr Williams, who went with the child, and found defendant in the act of assaulting Deloranie when she arrived. In her passion, Jane Thomas said, she seized a stick and struck Dowling on the head with it, and he then got up and went away. She then went some distance on the Tarleton road with the children, to see them safe to their aunt’s, and afterwards, reported the assault to the police.
Mr Crisp had very poor materials with which to construct a defence, but he made the most of them. It was that the defendant had been drinking so long that he was in a maudlin state of drunkenness, and the girl offered him some of the lollies and sat down beside him voluntarily, when he might have done sufficient to amount to taking an indecent liberty, but no more, and that there was a house in the bush within forty or fifty yards of where they were, and if she had called out she would have had assistance.
The jury found the prisoner guilty on the second count, and he was remanded for sentence.

Source: Cornwall Chronicle Launceston, Tas.Saturday 2 April 1870, page 5

INDECENT ASSAULT. John Dowling was then placed at the bar to receive sentence, he having been convicted of an indecent assault on a girl, near the Don. Mr. O.Crisp, who defended: the prisoner at his trial, said Dowling had been convicted of a criminal assault, which was not a very grave offence. At his trial the prisoner labored under many disadvantages, he having had no witnesses, nor was he allowed to make any statement or produce certificates as to prisoner’s character. Mr. Wedge was named to him (Mr. Crisp) .by the prisoner as being the only person in town who could give evidence as to the character prisoner bore previous to the alleged assault, but he was sorry to say the gentleman referred to was at present out of town, The prisoner had been in the colony for a number of years, and never before had his name appeared on the criminal records of the country. Then respecting the evidence, everything which had been said in Court could not be true, or the prisoner would be guilty of nothing short of an attempt to commit a rape. Neither could the girl’s statement be believed, because if she had screamed as she said she had, she would most certainly have been heard at the house which was so near the spot where the alleged offence was committed. The object of all punishments he ‘presumed was the suppression of crime. He hoped that in passing judgment his Honor would consider that the prisoner had been already imprisoned for several months. The Recorder said he could not agree with the remark just made as to the offence not being a grave one. In his opinion the crime was one of the most serious which had come before the Court during the session. Had the prisoner succeeded in doing what he had ‘evidently attempted to, he would undoubtedly have been hanged. No evidence had been brought to show the previous character borne by the prisoner, but he (the Recorder) would accept the statement made by the learned counsel on the subject. The full term of imprisonment to which the prisoner was liable was seven years, but the maximum punishment would not be inflicted. The sentence of the Court was that he be imprisoned for five years.

Source: Launceston Examiner (Tas. : 1842 – 1899) Sat 2 Apr 1870 Page 3 RECORDER’S COURT.

Source: Tasmania Reports for Police, J. Barnard Gov’t printer

This is the notice in the weekly police gazette, week ending 6th January 1875, of John Dowling’s discharge from the five year sentence imposed in 1870 for indecent assault. Within days he was re-convicted for larceny and sentenced to six months.

Source: Tasmania Reports for Police, J. Barnard Gov’t printer

Convicted at Kempton, Green Ponds, Tasmania, as John Dowling, labourer, Free to Colony (FC) per the Bangalore, native place Kildare (Ireland), 46 years old, 5ft 7¼ins tall, with a prior conviction recorded on 30th March 1870, was sentenced to six months for larceny in the week ending 9th January 1875. He was discharged from the Hobart Gaol in the week ending 7th July 1875 (below).

Source: Tasmania Reports for Police, J. Barnard Gov’t printer

John Dowling per Bangalore was discharged from the Hobart Gaol in the week ending 7th July 1875. Six months later he was convicted of the rape of a child in the Supreme Court, Hobart. This was the first instance in the police gazettes of police noting that the name John Dowling, free to the colony on the Bangalorewas John Nowlan’s alias.


“Supreme Court, Hobart Town
List of prisoners arraigned at the above-named Court on the 10th, 11th and 12th of February, 1876
Names, Nowlan John, as Dowling; Age 45; Ship Bangalore; Conditions F.C.; Offences Rape; How Disposed of; Death recorded.”

Source: Tasmanian Reports of Crime for Police (police gazette), J. Barnard, Gov’t printer

The intercolonial press ran a simple syndicated notice of Nowlan ‘s sentence for rape of a child:

Hobart Town. Februarv 12.
John Nowlan, formerly convicted of a
similar offence, has been sentenced to
death for a rape on a child.

Source: South Australian Chronicle and Weekly Mail Sat 19 Feb 1876 Page 7 TASMANIA.

The sittings of the Criminal Court begin this morning, at 11 a.m. His Honor Sir Francis Smith, Chief Justice, will preside in the First Court, and Mr. Justice Dobson in the Second Court. The following is the calendar :
John Nowlan, Bellerive, rape.
Patrick Lamb, Franklin, wounding.
Robert Hopper, Oatlands, robbery and wounding.

Patrick Powell, Oatlands, housebreaking, Honora Tracey, Hobart Town, perjury.
Eliza Ann M’Kenzie, Hobart Town, perjury.
Stephen Spurling, Hobart Town, false pretences. Patrick Walsh, Oatlands, breaking a store and larceny.
William Sainsbury and Harriet Sainsbury, Oat-lands, housebreaking. ,
Ellen Waller, Franklin, perjury.

Source: Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 – 1954), Thursday 10 February 1876, page 2

John Nowlan, Bellerive, rape.
Patrick Lamb, Franklin, wounding.
Robert Hopper, Oatlands, robbery and wounding.
Patrick Powell, Oatlands, housebreaking,
Honora Tracey, Hobart Town, perjury.
Eliza Ann M’Kenzie, Hobart Town, perjury.
Stephen Spurling, Hobart Town, false pretences.
Patrick Walsh, Oatlands, breaking a store and larceny.
William Sainsbury and Harriet Sainsbury, Oat-lands, housebreaking. ,
Ellen Waller, Franklin, perjury.

Source: The Tasmanian Tribune Hobart Town Wed 9 Feb 1876 Page 2 The Criminal Sessions.

The Criminal Sessions were opened yesterday morning, at 11 o’clock, by his Honor Sir Francis Smith, Chief Justice, who presided over the First Court. The Attorney-General prosecuted on behalf of the Crown. John Nowlan was found guilty of having committed a rape on Caroline Agnes Welch, 10 years of age, at Cambridge, on the 29th December. His Honor passed sentence of death on the prisoner, who maintained a stolid appearance during the whole trial.

Source: The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 – 1954)Fri 11 Feb 1876 Page 2 THE MERCURY.

On the 12th February 1876, the Mercury published this notice regarding the death sentence passed on prisoner John Nowlan, presumably to allay the prisoner’s fears:

Source: Mercury (Hobart, Tas.), Saturday 12 February 1876, page 2


THE CONVICT NOWLAN.- In reporting that the Chief justice had “passed” sentence of death on Nowlan, for criminal assault on a child, an error was made. It should have been that the sentence of death was “recorded”, a very different thing, in so far as the convict is concerned.

The Legislation
This is the ACT of 1863 under which John Nowlan alias Dowling was sentenced to five years in 1870 for the indecent assault of Deloranie Boss, a girl under 12 years of age. The first count – intent to commit a rape – would have incurred a sentence of ten years, but he was sentenced instead on the second count of indecent assault which should have incurred the full sentence of seven years instead of five: see Clauses 48, 49, and 50 below. When found guilty of having committed a rape on Caroline Agnes Welch, 10 years of age in 1876, the full force of the law – Clause 45, the death sentence – was applied, yet a reprieve followed. The sentence of death on John Nowlan alias Dowling was commuted to life in prison.


AN ACT to consolidate and amend the Legislative
Enactments relating to Offences against the
Person. [31 July, 1863.]

WHEREAS it is expedient to consolidate and amend the Legislative PREAMBLE.
Enactments relating to Offences against the Person: Be it enacted .
by His Excellency the Governor of Tasmania, by and with the advice
and consent of the Legislative Council and House of Assembly, in Par·
liament assembled, as follows :-

Rape, Abduction, and Defilement of Women.
45 Whosoever shall be convicted of the crime of Rape shall be
guilty of Felony, and being convicted thereof shall suffer Death as a

46 Whosoever shall, by false pretences, false representations, or
other fraudulent means, procure any woman or girl under the age of
Twenty-one years to have illicit carnal connexion with any man shall
be guilty of a Misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable
to be imprisoned for Ten years.

47 Whosoever shall unlawfully and carnally know and abuse any
girl under the age of Ten years shall be guilty of Felony, and being
convicted thereof shall suffer Death as a Felon.

48 Whosoever shall unlawfully and carnally know and abuse any
girl being above the age of Ten years and under the age of Twelve years
shall be guilty of a Misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be
liable to be imprisoned for Seven years.

49 Whosoever shall be convicted of any assault with intent to
commit Rape, or of carnally knowing and abusing any girl being above the
age of Ten years and under the age of Twelve years, or of any attempt
to have carnal knowledge of a girl under Twelve years of age, or of any
attempt to commit Rape, shall be liable to be imprisoned for Ten

50 Whosoever shall be convicted of any indecent assault upon any
female shall be liable to be imprisoned for Seven years.

READ the full ACT here {pdf}
“An Act To Consolidate And Amend The Legislative Enactments Relating To Offences Against The Person”(27 Vic, No 5) Austlii Database

Capital Punishment
Photographer Thomas J. Nevin was exposed to the most pitiful of criminals if not to their actual crimes when he captured their likeness for police records in Tasmania from the 1870s to the 1880s. Sexual crimes against children were prosecuted without much consistency as to the punishment or length of sentence, despite clear legislation guidelines. Two prisoners also photographed by T. J. Nevin – Henry Page and Charles Downes – were convicted of rape of a child in separate crimes, and initially sentenced to death. When their sentences were reprieved in 1875, public outrage ensued regarding inconsistencies in sentences, sparked by the execution of Job Smith on 31st May 1875 whom Nevin had photographed under the alias of William Campbell. Letters to the Mercury published on 29th May 1875 protested the planned execution of Job Smith in the face of reprieves granted to Charles Downes, as well as Marsh and Henry Page.


Sir,-Since the Executive have shut their ears to all appeals to spare the life of the condemned Job Smith, I cannot refrain from asking, upon what principles the death penalty has been, and is to be hereafter, inflicted, or commuted, in Tasmania. The man Marsh, who was tried on the same day as Smith, and found guilty of the same offence, has been reprieved-not for any extenuating circumstances in connection with his crime, but, apparently, because no great amount of violence was used by him, the fear of his victim having rendered it unnecessary. In December, 1873, Henry Page was tried and found guilty of rape upon a child under age, under circumstances the most horrible and revolting that ever came before a Tasmanian jury. This inhuman monster was sentenced to death, but was reprieved on account of his great age, and is now confined at Port Arthur. In February, 1872, Charles Downes was tried and found guilty of carnally knowing a child under ten years of age, under circumstances which amounted to nothing short of a violent rape. This man was also, after being sentenced to death, reprieved.

In the presence of these three reprievals, I look in vain for the principle upon which the Executive have decided to hang Job Smith. If in anyone, of the four cases now under notice, so far as they are to be compared with each other, there was any palliating circumstances, it was surely in the case of Smith. He had been removed by the strong arm of the law from all the opportunities left open to the other three of sinning at pleasure without rendering themselves liable to arrest for crime. It must also be confessed that had strict discipline been in force in regard to Smith, the offence for which he is about to suffer would not have been committed.

What then is the particularly dark feature in the case of Smith for which the Executive have determined that he shall die? Is it because he struck his victim on the arm with a piece of batten? Then it is not the rape for which they are punishing him. Or, are the Executive carrying out the extreme penalty of the law in the present instance because the Judge who tried the case thought fit to say, that if ever there was a case in which it was proper to do so, this was one? Then the Executive had better, for the future, resign their prerogative into the hands of the Chief Justice. But until they think fit to do so, it is to be demanded of them that they mete out to all persons who come under their jurisdiction an equal administration of the law; but how the reprieving of Downes, Page, and Marsh, and the hanging of Job Smith, can be proved to be that, I, for one, cannot see.

I am, yours truly,

Source: CAPITAL PUNISHMENT. (1875, May 29). The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 – 1954), p. 3. Retrieved April 16, 2014, from

Prisoner SMITH, Job alias CAMPBELL alias BRODIE executed 31st May 1875
TMAG Ref: Q15572
Photographer: Thomas J. Nevin 1874

Left: prisoner Charles Downes per Rodney 2, death sentence reprieved
Right: prisoner Henry Page per Phoenix 2, death sentence reprieved
Photographer: Thomas J. Nevin 1874
Collection: National Library of Australia

Charles Downes died in custody at the Hobart Gaol. The inquest into his death was published in the Mercury on 13th August 1878. The last man hanged in Tasmania was Frederick Henry Thompson. He was put to death at 6:00am on February 14, 1946 inside the Hobart Penitentiary. Queensland abolished capital punishment in 1922. Tasmania followed in 1968, Victoria in 1975, South Australia in 1976 and New South Wales and Western Australia in 1984. The federal government abolished capital punishment in the territories in 1973, and the Crimes Legislation Amendment (Torture Prohibition and Death Penalty Abolition) Act 2010 blocked any state or territory from reintroducing it.

Buried as John Dowling 1906
Presumably, prisoner John Nowlan served his life sentence at the Hobart Gaol, and relocated to the New Town Charitable Institution in advanced age. Was John Nowlan alias John Dowling this prisoner whose last known residence was recorded in 1906 as the New Town Charitable Institution?

John Nowlan
Date of Birth:1824
Crime: Assault and theft
Convicted at: Ireland, Waterford
Sentence term: 7 years
Ship: London
Departure date: 20th December, 1850
Arrival date: 19th March, 1851
Place of arrival Van Diemen’s Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 272 other convicts
Trial date: 02/03/1848
One of 288 prisoners embarked on Ship London at Kingstown (Dun Laoghaire), Co. Dublin on 13th and 16th December 1850 from Mountjoy Prison, Dublin. Ship sailed 20th Dec 1850 and was 89 days at sea reaching Hobart Town on 19th March 1851.

Source: Community contributed record at –

The cemetery record gives this deceased person buried with the name John Dowling the age at death in 1906 as 82 yrs old, born therefore ca. 1824. This birth date accords with the information about a prisoner called John Nowlan, born 1824, convicted of assault and theft at Waterford, Ireland on 2nd March 1848, sentenced to 7 years, arrived at Hobart, Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania) on board the London, on 19th March 1851 with 272 other convicts. In other words, the association of this prisoner with the alias John Dowling and his arrival on the ship Bangaloreas a sailor – i.e. “free” – may have been all of his own invention, an attempt to create a new identity at the expiry of his seven year sentence in 1858 before his first conviction of attempted rape of a child in 1870.

Name: Dowling, John
Record Type: Deaths
Age: 82
Description: Last known residence: New Town Charitable Institution, New Town
Property: Cornelian Bay Cemetery
Date of burial: 21 Aug 1906
File number: BU 15322
Record ID: NAME_INDEXES:1546107

Title The Canterbury Association ships Bangalore, Dominion, Duke of Portland, Lady Nugent, Midlothian and Canterbury in the East India docks [picture]
Call Number PIC Drawer 6694 #U3364 NK4182/8
Created/Published [London : Illustrated London news, 1851]
Extent 1 print : wood engraving ; 12.6 x 23 cm\
Location: National Library of Australia

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