Castle Hill Convict Rebellion - Aftermath


Three hundred were eventually brought in over three days. Of the nearly 300 rebels directly engaged in the battle, 15 were killed, nine executed, seven whipped with 200 or 500 lashes then allotted to the Coal River chain gang, 26 sent to the Newcastle coal mines, others put on good behaviour orders against a trip to Norfolk Island, and most pardoned as having been coerced into the rising. Cunningham was court martialled under the Martial Law and hanged at the Commissariat Store at Windsor, which he had bragged he would burn down.

This did not end the insurgency, with Irish plots bubbling along, keeping the Government and its informers vigilant, with military callout rehearsals, over the next three years. Governor King remained convinced that the real inspirers of revolt had kept out of sight, and had some suspects sent to Norfolk Island as a preventive measure.

  • Nine rebels were executed.
First Name Surname Means of death
Phillip Cunningham Executed at Windsor.
William Johnston Executed at Castle Hill and then hung in chains, just outside Parramatta on the road to Prospect.
John Neale Executed at Castle Hill.
George Harrington Executed at Castle Hill.
Samuel Humes Executed at Parramatta and then hung in chains.
Charles Hill Executed at Parramatta.
Jonothan Place Executed at Parramatta.
John Brannan Executed at Sydney.
Timothy Hogan Executed at Sydney.
  • Two were "reprieved, detained at the governor's pleasure."
First Name Surname
John Burke
Bryan McCormack
  • Four received "500 lashes and exile to the Coal River chain gang." (Coal River was the original name for Newcastle.)
First Name Surname
John Griffin
Neil Smith
Bryan Burne
Cornelius (Connor) Dwyer
  • Three received "200 lashes and exile to the Coal River chain gang."
First Name Surname
David Morrison
Cornelius Lyons
Owen McDermot
  • Twenty-three other rebels were also exiled to the Coal River. This group included:
First Name Surname Other information
John Cavenah
Francis Neeson
? Tierney Convict
Robert Cooper Assisted rebels.
Dennis Ryan Assisted rebels.
Bryan Spaldon Emancipist. Also punished with as many lashes as he could stand without his life being endangered.
Bryan Riley Emancipist. Also punished with as many lashes as he could stand without his life being endangered.
  • Thirty-four prisoners were placed in irons until they could be 'disposed' of. It is not known whether some, or all of them, were sent to the Coal River.
First Name Surname
Owen Black
Thomas Brodrick
Brien Burne
Thomas Burne
Jonothan Butler
Jonothan Campbell
William Cardell
Nicholas Carty
Thomas Connel
James Cramer
Peter Garey
Andrew Coss
James Cullen
William Day
James Duffy
Thomas Gorman
Edward Griffin
Jonothan Griffin
James Higgans
Thomas Kelly
Jonothan Moore
Edward Nail
Douglas Hartigan
Peter Magarth
Jonothan Malony
Joseph McLouglin
Jonothan Reilley
Jonothan Roberts
Anthony Rowson
George Russell
Richard Thompson
Jonothan Tucker
James Turoney
  • The remaining rebels, as well as other suspects, were allowed to return to their places of employment.

The battle site is believed to be near the present-day Rouse Hill Regional Town Centre (a sprawling shopping mall). 'The Government Farm at Castle Hill' was added in March 1986 to the Australian Registry of the National Estate (Place ID: 2964), a special place of international and Australian significance intended to occupy over 60 hectares. Residential development, including dubious land dealings, has significantly diminished the area of the prison town. Less than 0.2 km² (19 hectares) has remained undeveloped and conserved, as Castle Hill Heritage Park (2004). There is a sculpture near the battle site at Castlebrook Cemetery commemorating the sacrifice. However, there is some debate as to where the battle actually occurred.

The bicentenary of the rebellion was commemorated in 2004, with a variety of events.

Read more about this topic:  Castle Hill Convict Rebellion

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