‘Sitting for my likeness through the day to Gould who makes a good sketch … This poor wretch is another example of the baneful effects produced by Gambling. He has been a pupil of Mulreadys—his true name is Holland his friends residing in Stafford are chinaware manufacturers. He got into a gaming set in Liverpool, lost his money and to redeem it and being fond of play he got initiated and became a regular member of the set of sharpers. In the course of his practices he came toLondon and was at one time intimate with the Notorious Thornhill (Thurthill) the murderer and all his gang. He painted at times for Ackerman in the Strand and got transported for some petty theft which his vices and necessities drove him to commit.’1 Thus wrote Robert Francis Martin, the first officer of the Asia 3 which transported Gould (along with 197 other prisoners) to Hobart in 1827arriving in that place on 7 December. Martin’s description is interesting since it provides an insight into Gould’s early life and also throws some light on the operations of criminal gangs in London and the provinces at that time, and the wiles employed to ensnare susceptible individuals into the highly corrupt web of underworld operations.
KeywordsCriminal Gang Flower Painter Petty Theft Botanical Specimen Chain Gang
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