Frances Hannah Clements (c.1788–1800)

It is believed Frances Hannah, the child of a First Fleet convict woman transported per Lady Penrhyn (1788), was born on board the ship not long before the convicts disembarked, qualifying her as a First Fleeter in her own right. She went on to become (unofficially) the step-daughter of Parramatta surgeon Thomas Arndell and she is now one of 17 First Fleeters with memorial plaques. Her younger half-brother William Burleigh (the illegitimate child of convict Elizabeth Burleigh and Surgeon Arndell) lies in the same grave as Frances Hannah, having predeceased Frances by almost eight years.

Burial Location

  • Section 4, Row I, No.1, St. John’s Cemetery, Parramatta


  • Alternate: John Burleigh
  • Alternate: Frances Burleigh
  • Alternate: Frances Burley
  • Alternate: Frances Dalton
  • Alternate: Frances Hannah Clement


  • Born: January 1788 on board the Lady Penrhyn
  • On victualling list: 5 April 1788
  • Baptised: 20 April 1788, Sydney Cove, New South Wales the child of Elizabeth Burleigh (alias Dalton) and John Clements, seaman and carpenter on the Lady Penrhyn
  • Died: 20 January 1800, aged 11
  • Buried: 23 January 1800, St. John’s Cemetery, Parramatta


  • Child of Elizabeth Burleigh (alias Elizabeth Dalton)
  • Child of John Clements
  • Step-child of Assistant Surgeon Thomas Arndell
  • Half-sibling of William Burleigh
  • Half-sibling of Elizabeth Arndell
  • Half-sibling of Mary Arndell
  • Half-sibling of Sarah Arndell
  • Half-sibling of Thomas Arndell (II)
  • Half-sibling of James Arndell
  • Half-sibling of Frances Hannah Arndell

Frances Hannah Clements: The Convict’s Child (2016)

By Michaela Ann Cameron

Abstract: Born on a First Fleet convict ship to a woman written off as one of Lady Penrhyn‘s “Abandon’d Prostitutes,” Frances Hannah Clements was not even important enough for her name or gender to be recorded correctly by the ship’s surgeon. And maybe the surgeon could not be blamed for jumping to the conclusion that this base born child of a convict and a member of the ship’s crew was a hopeless case. For what Surgeon Arthur Bowes Smyth could not have known then was that this convict’s child would soon become the stepdaughter of his own colleague: Assistant Surgeon Thomas Arndell, Parramatta’s first surgeon. But a cruel twist of fate ensured that Frances did not end up being able to benefit from her change in fortune…more>>



  • Judith Dunn, The Parramatta Cemeteries: St. John’s, (Parramatta, NSW: Parramatta and District Historical Society, 1991).
  • Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet, (Sydney: Library of Australian History, 1989), p.93.
  • Parish Burial Records, Textual Records, St. John’s Anglican Church Parramatta, New South Wales, Australia.


# First Fleet

# Came Free

# Convict’s child

# Ship: Lady Penrhyn (1788)

# Burial year: 1800

# Grave: marked