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Rowland Thomas Dossett

Born 1828

Burford, Oxfordshire, England

St Joseph's Church, Hobart, Tasmania



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ROWLAND THOMAS DOSSETT was born 24 September 1828 in Burford, Oxford, England, and died 31 December 1886 in Dunedin, New Zealand. Son of THOMAS DOSSETT and HARRIET HARTLEY.  He married JOHANNA ANNE DONLAN/DONNELLAN 25 October 1852 in St Josephs Roman Catholic Church, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.  She was born Abt. 1832 in Quin, County of Clare, Ireland, and died 18 July 1896 in Pleasant Point, New Zealand.


Rowland Thomas Dossett arrived in Tasmania as a convict on board the ship "William Jardine' on the 14th November 1850. He was sentenced to seven years. His trial was at Birmingham on 23 March 1848.   His offence was stealing Carpenters Tools, (Saws) and he also had prior similar offences. His convict records give his next of kin as brothers Henry and Frederick in Native place (Burford, Oxford, Eng). His parents were deceased.  Rowland like his father was a Carpenter and Joiner.


Convict records give his description:

Height-5'6 & 3/4, Complexion-Fair, Head-small, Hair-dark brown, Eyes-blue, Face-long, Eye brows-brown, Nose-long, Tattoo on left arm-R.D 1846 and a fish.    Rowland received his 'Ticket of Leave' on 23 April 1852.


Rowland Dossett and Johanna Donlan applied for permission to marry on 16-9-1852. He was a convict and she was listed as 'Free'. They married at St Josephs Roman Catholic Church, Hobart, Tasmania on the 25 October 1852.


Rowland and Johanna Dossett were living on Collins St, Hobart, Tasmania 1853-1854.


By 1855 Rowland and Johanna had moved to Moorabool Estate, Geelong, Victoria, Australia. Soon after Rowland and his family headed to Steiglitz, Victoria, Australia where Rowland must have tried his luck on the 'Goldfields' perhaps with no success. By 1858 they had returned to Geelong.

On the 31st March 1860 on the ship 'Gil Blas', Rowland, Johanna and their children Agnes, Martha and Johanna Dossett arrived in Dunedin, New Zealand. Interestingly another child is listed on that ship arriving with them! His name on passenger records is Frank Dossett (born abt 1848).    If Frank is the child of Rowland and Johanna then he was born about 4 years before they married in 1852. This seems unlikely because Rowland did not arrive in Tasmania until 1850.


In 1861 according to the Electoral Roll, Rowland & family are residing in Dunedin, NZ.

In 1862 they are in Bruce, (Wetherstone's Flat) Otago, New Zealand.

In 1863 Rowland moved his family to Wanganui and on 17 March 1863 Rowland received 6 months imprisonment with hard labour for the theft of his own horse which he had left with a man as security for a promissory note of 26 pounds, 2 shillings and sixpence for an accommodation bill.

In 1866 Rowland is listed in the Wanganui Trade Directory as a Carpenter in Victoria Ave. Its possible the Dossett children may have attended the Infant School in Guyton Street, which was near Victoria Ave.

In 1867, Rowland's son Frederick Dossett is born in Dunedin. Perhaps the family were residing there.

In 1870 Rowland and his family turn up in Lyttleton, Christchurch. He was working as a Carpenter.

In 1874 they lived in the Pleasant Point district, as lessee of the Accommodation House at Opihi, near Hanging Rock.

In 1876 the Dossett family are living in Timaru. Rowland is working as a Carpenter.

In 1878 the family are in Dunedin. On the 17th September 1878 in Dunedin Rowland was suspected of maliciously breaking windows. In 1881 Rowland is sentenced to 1 months goal for being illegally on premises.

1884 sees the Dossett's back in Christchurch and Rowland in Addington prison for 2 years with hard labour for larceny and housebreaking. In May 1886 Rowland is discharged from goal and listed as a Carpenter in Christchurch.

In December 1886, Rowland Dossett died in Dunedin, New Zealand.




MARY ANN MARTHA DOSSETT, b. 9 March 1853, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia; d. 25 August 1853, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.


AGNES DOSSETT, b. 16 February 1854, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia; d. 1 December 1930, Dunedin, New Zealand. She married DAVID OTTOLANGUI 18 March 1875 in Dunedin, New Zealand.  He was born 13 March 1846 in Shepherd St, Spitalfields, London, England, and died 21 November 1907 in 71 Maclaggan St, Dunedin, New Zealand.


MARTHA ANN DOSSETT, b. 21 August 1855, Geelong, Victoria, Australia. She married (1) GEORGE BUIST 20 June 1874 in The house of Mrs Bissett, High St, Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand. She married (2) HARRY CHILLINGWORTH Abt. 1891.


THOMAS DOSSETT, b. 1857, Steiglitz, Victoria, Australia, d. 1857, Steiglitz, Victoria, Australia.


JOHANNA DOSSETT, b. 1858, Geelong, Victoria, Australia, d. 5 July 1940. She married WALKER HESSELL 15 March 1875 in House of Rev C Frazer, Tuam St, Christchurch, New Zealand.  He was born 1850 in Hull, Yorkshire, England, and died 9 April 1912 in New Zealand.


ROWLAND THOMAS DOSSETT, b. 1862, Wanganui, New Zealand; m. BRIDELLA KATHERINE O'BRIAN, 12 May 1888, Dunedin, New Zealand.


WALTER JOHN DOSSETT, b. 8 September 1864, Wanganui, New Zealand and died 1940, Tasmania, Australia. He married ALICE MAUDE BURNSIDE. She was born 1 April 1882, Tasmania and died 7 February 1934, Tasmania.


HENRY CHARLES (PAM PAM) DOSSETT, b. 6 February 1861, Dunedin, New Zealand. He married CATHERINE (KATE) HORGAN 11 May 1887 in St Mary's Catholic Church, Pleasant Point, New Zealand, daughter of BRIDGET HORGAN (NEE UNKNOWN).


FREDERICK JOHN DOSSETT, b. 25 March 1867, Dunedin, New Zealand; d. 1935, Pleasant Point, Otago, New Zealand. He married FLORENCE (FLORRIE) MAY ROBERTS 30 April 1900 in Pleasant Point, Timaru, New Zealand.  She was born 1881 in Timaru, New Zealand.