Name Variations alias BAILEY
Father William aka Peter YOUNGMAN b.c. 1814 m.1 (1) 1842 (2) 18652 d. 18673
Mother Ellen MACMAHON aka Helen McMACHEN4 alias Ann MAHONY b.c. 1820 m. 18425 d. 18626
Brother John Thomas YOUNGMAN b. 18447 m. d.
Sister Charlotte Elizabeth YOUNGMAN b. 18458 m. 18659 Henry PULLIN d. 191110
Brother Samuel YOUNGMAN b. unknown m. d. 188611
Sister Mary Jane YOUNGMAN12 b. 184913 m. none - d. 186814
Brother Champion Walsh YOUNGMAN15 b.c. 1851 m. d. unknown
Brother William YOUNGMAN b. 185216 m. 189217 Catherine Martha BURRELL18 d. 193119
Brother Peter YOUNGMAN b. 185420 m. none - d. 185721
Inmate Ellen YOUNGMAN b.c. 1857 m. none - d. 187022
Sister Harriet YOUNGMAN23 b. 1858 m. none - d. 185824
Brother Sydney W. YOUNGMAN b. 186125 m. none - d. 186226
Relationship Name Age Height Hair Eyes Complexion Build Distinguishing features
Father William27 21 5' 4" brown blue sallow scar back of left wrist; scar back of left thumb; another knuckle of forefinger of left hand; scar back of little finger of same; scar inside right leg; second toe of left foot crippled
Mother Ellen28 19 5' 3½" brown grey fair ruddy and freckled full featured; scar back of left wrist; small mole on left side of neck; middle finger of right hand stiff from being fractured

Ellen was arrested in the Wellington area of NSW by the Stony Creek police in October 1869, charged with the theft of bedclothes from Charles BAILEY of Ironbarks. She appeared in the Stony Creek police court before the Stony Creek police Magistrate, H. M. KEIGHTLY on 8 October 1869,29 and was sentenced to fourteen days in the lock up. After this imprisonment period had expired she was to be transferred by escort to the Newcastle Industrial School for twelve months.30 She appeared in the Bathurst Gaol records and in the Police Gazette31 as Ellen YOUNGMAN alias BAILEY and it may be that she had been informally adopted by or left with BAILEY. In addition, CLARKE, on 6 December 1869,32 referred to this alias in his letter to KEIGHTY. Ellen was held in Bathurst gaol until 29 November, arriving at Newcastle with Winifred MACDONALD.33 It took nearly two months for her to arrive and CLARKE in his letter questioned the delay stating 'there is no account sent with [Ellen] as to where she has been since.' CLARKE also clarified that Ellen had been erroneously sent to the Industrial School when she

should under the fourth (4th) clause of the Reformatory School Act 1866 have been committed to the Reformatory for females at this place – under [illegible] in terms of sixth (6th) Clause of that act. … I would therefore suggest that a fresh warrant be forwarded to me committing the girl the Reformatory and I shall thank you to have the enclosed record of her case filled in and returned at your earliest convenience. I shall return the warrant I hold when I receive the other.

As a result of these communications, Ellen was admitted to the Newcastle Reformatory for a year for petty larceny.34 No admission details remain for the reformatory and records for the Industrial School for this date also have not survived so, even if Ellen had been placed in the Industrial School in the interim, no family details will be available for her. On 4 August 1870, Ellen absconded from the reformatory in company with Jane TAYLOR and Mary Ann MEEHAN but the three were re-captured shortly afterwards. CLARKE's letter explained how the escape had been achieved.

I went to the Dormitory where the three girls should be and, found three forms made of blankets in the three beds, and the girls gone. the forms were covered with quilts and looked like people in the beds. Upon further examination, the clothing that the girls had on was found in the paddock in front of the institution.
Mrs King stated that she locked up the girls in the dormitory about six o'clock but that she did not see Jane Taylor in the room, that the other two girls told Mrs King, Jane was under the bed, that it was only her fun, she would be out presently, the Mrs King states that she locked the door and left the key in the lock - that she suspects that Jane Taylor was in another room and that she unlocked the door and let the other two out. I then went in search of them accompanied by two policemen we arrested them about two miles out of town and brought them back to the Institution about 12 o'clock on the same night from what the girls state Mrs King was right in suspecting Taylor but they all say that the door was not locked, that there was no key in it, it was only bolted …
Meehan is now undergoing punishment in solitary confinement and on bread and water diet … The other two are too young to punish in this way … Youngman [is] about twelve years of age.

The three girls were assisted by Mary Ann's future husband George ALLSHORN, an omnibus driver and ultimately he was charged with assisting them in their escape. CLARKE stated "He took them out of town in an omnibus." ALLSHORN was brought before the Newcastle court by CLARKE and spent a month in Maitland Gaol as punishment.35

The reformatory list written in 1874 erroneously indicated that Ellen was discharged from the Reformatory on 7 October 1870.36 This date seems to have been recorded to appear to comply to the regulations for the reformatory but is in error for two reasons. Ellen had been sentenced to 14 days in Bathurst Gaol before she was to be sent to Newcastle and had then taken nearly two months to be sent from Bathurst so she did not arrive until December. Her year in the reformatory would not have begun until at least 21 October and almost certainly much later. More significantly, Ellen was one of the two girls who died in Newcastle37 and her death was recorded at the school in Newcastle on 26 December 1870.38 The inquest concluded that she died from a pre-existing condition and was caused by fits, arising from a malformation of the heart. This problem had become apparent during the previous year and had progressively worsened until she died.39 CLARKE's correspondence to the Colonial Secretary in regard to Ellen's death indicated that he had kept Ellen at the school due to her illness even though her time had expired and she had been eligible for release. He explained that Ellen had not been well when she had arrived in December 1869 and since her arrival she had had fits where she had turned blue. Richard HARRIS had diagnosed cyanosis which was incurable. A few days before her death she had begun vomiting blood and on the day of her death suffered a 'violent attack of reaching on the evening of the 6th [sic] Instant during which she expired.'40 Ellen was buried in the grounds of Christ Church, Church of England, Newcastle.


Ellen was the daughter of William YOUNGMAN and Ellen McMAHON whose permission to marry was granted in Bathurst by Rev. M. O'REILLY on 13 October 1842. William had a ticket of leave and Ellen was on a bond.41 The couple married at St. Michael’s Catholic Church at Bathurst on 22 November 1842,42 where Ellen was recorded as Ann MAHONY. The record was clearly recorded and both parties were residents of Summer Hill. The witnesses were Richard BROWN and Briget (X) NICHOLS, also of Summer Hill. William was a protestant. The decision to marry in a Catholic church was probably not William's choice but rather the result of Ann's religion and possibly that of the man providing the permission to marry. Baptisms and deaths were subsequently recorded for William and Ellen YOUNGMAN and also for Peter and Ellen YOUNGMAN. No death records for any children have been identified in the names of William and Ann YOUNGMAN. William was recorded as a settler at Carcoar in 1845 when Charlotte was baptized but by the time of the joint baptism of Mary Jane and Peter in 1854, he was working as a stockman. The death of their son, Peter, was registered in Albury in 1857, and this death occurred around the time of Ellen’s birth. It is therefore possible that she had been born in this area but the precise location of her birth has not been identified because no record has survived, if one was originally made.

Ellen aka Ann had arrived on the Planter (2) and appeared on the indent as Helen McMACHEN or McMAHON.43 She was a Catholic from Glasgow. As Helen McMACHIN alias McMAHON on 14 September 1841, she requested permission from the Rev. James[?] GUNTHER of Mudgee to marry the forty-one year-old John COLLINS. This permission was refused as it was recorded that COLLINS had stated that he was married and already had two children. It is considered likely but cannot be proved as no records have been confirmed, that she and COLLINS had had some children. The baptisms of John T. COLLINS in 184044 and that of William J. COLLINS in 184245 to John T. and Ellen are considered unlikely because the baptisms occurred in Maitland when at this time Ellen was in Mudgee. The relationship with William was volatile and in October 1861 Ellen appeared in court charged with assaulting him and also one of her children. All cases against her were discharged.46 Ellen died as the result of intemperance in Maitland in early January 186247 at the age of 38.48 Her death was registered in Maitland as Ellen YOUNGMAN and only her father, recorded as Peter, was listed on her death registration.49 The result of the inquest into her death50 was reported in the Maitland Mercury under the name Helen YOUNGMAN. No children were recorded on the Planter indent for Ellen when she arrived and while no baptisms or registrations have been identified for any children born to Ellen before her relationship with William YOUNGMAN, her inquest reported that she had been the mother to 'eighteen children of whom seven are still living.' To date only Ellen and five of her siblings – Charlotte, Samuel, William, Mary Jane and Sydney – have been identified as still alive in 1862. Online trees have recorded only eleven children for William and Ellen so it seems that there is little doubt that other children have not yet been identified.

William YOUNGMAN had been tried at Suffolk Quarter Sessions for housebreaking on 8 April 1835, and had arrived in Sydney on the Royal Sovereign (2) on 12 December 1835. On his arrival he was recorded as a 21-year-old Protestant who was a farm labourer and shepherd, who could neither read nor write.51 By 1842, after years living a difficult life as a labourer, William became 'lucky' when his daughter Mary Jane YOUNGMAN was born a dwarf.52 From 1861,53 William and his wife earned their living exhibiting of this unfortunate child at shows and carnivals.54 Publicity surrounding Mary Jane55 identified her as either The Lachlan Prodigy or the Australian Fat Girl. It appeared likely that the family earned a reasonable income from this undertaking.

Within days of his wife's death, William was advertising that Mary Jane would be exhibited in Sydney56 and before the end of January had abandoned his younger children – and perhaps all his family – in order to continue exhibiting Mary Jane. William may have made a promise of a financial contribution to those who cared for his younger children as he was apprehended on a warrant and in February 1863 appeared in the Sydney courts charged with deserting his son in Maitland.57 This child was likely left in Maitland after Ellen died as reports indicated that William and his wife had arrived in the town with two children.58 This abandoned child was probably the baby Sydney, whose death was registered in Maitland in 1862.59 William was subsequently arrested in Sydney on a warrant issued by Young police and was remanded to Young.60 In August 1863 he appeared in court61 charged with having deserting Ellen two years earlier. The Police Gazette stated, 'It is supposed that he will endeavour to leave the Colony.' At this time William was still in NSW and exhibiting Mary Jane in Braidwood. He was listed as an insolvent in 186462 by which time his abode was identified as Melbourne, Victoria, and spent time in gaol in Victoria in July 1864.63 Attempts were made to contact him by a firm of solicitors in 1865.64 The last definite trace yet found for William in Australia occurred in the Melbourne Argus in May 1864,65 when it was announced that the 'Fat Girl' would be travelling to South Australia for exhibition. No advertising has been found for any exhibition of Mary Jane YOUNGMAN in South Australia and it is believed that this was when William and his daughter left Australia and returned to England. No specific advertising has yet been located for any exhibitions of Mary Jane in England but the Liverpool Mercury,66 on Saturday, 22 February 1868, reported that Mary Jane died about 17 February 1868, in Walsall, England. A similar announcement was reproduced in the NSW newspapers in the Maitland Mercury on 14 May 1868.67

The Bathurst Pioneer Register contained a biography for William that identified that after his return to England, he married Rebekah CROUCHER at St James, Westminster, on 22 May 1865,68 and an Ancestry tree documented that William died on 1 November 1867, at Blackburn, Lancashire, England.69

Updated March 2019

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