Emanuel Antonio (born ca. 1797), a seaman and house servant, was tried at the Old Bailey, London in 1831 and transported to New South Wales on the Clyde (1832). His crime was described as ‘maliciously cutting’ and intent to commit ‘grievous bodily harm’. Antonio, described as a ‘man of colour’, spoke Portuguese and gave his native place as Bombay. In 1843 he was granted a ticket of leave for Moreton Bay and in 1852 he married an Irish immigrant, Ann Crickard, in Brisbane. After their marriage, Emmanuel Antonio and his wife disappear from the records.
In October 1831, 34-year-old Emanuel Antonio and 28-year-old Enacoe Caetano, mariners born in Bombay, were arrested in London, England and charged with ‘maliciously cutting’ Jacob George ‘with intent to do him grievous bodily harm’. Both defendants were described as a ‘Man of Colour’. Antonio and Caetano were lodgers at Gould’s Barracks, Ratcliffe Highway in Middlesex, which provided accommodation for Indian-born people and foreign seamen. Jacob George, the victim, gave evidence during the trial at the Old Bailey that he was a seaman born in Calcutta but that his father was an Englishman. All three men spoke Portuguese.
During an altercation between Antonio, Caetano and George at the barracks, Antonio stabbed George four times, though a surgeon gave evidence that they were ‘mere flesh wounds’. Despite this, Antonio was convicted of the capital crime of cutting and maiming and sentenced to death, which was respited to transportation for life. He was transported to New South Wales on the Clyde, arriving in Sydney in 1832.
The ship’s indent listed Antonio’s native place as Bombay and stated that he was a widower aged 34. No children were listed. He was also described as a seaman and house servant who could not read or write. Antonio was 5 feet 8 inches tall and had no distinguishing scars, marks or tattoos. His complexion and eyes were ‘black’ and his hair was ‘black and woolly’. The physical description suggests that Antonio was of African ancestry. Given the fact that he also spoke Portuguese, this raises the intriguing possibility that Antonio was born a slave or descended from slaves.
In October 1840, after eight years in New South Wales, Emanuel Antonio was granted a ticket of leave for Maitland. In March 1843, the ticket was ‘Altered to Moreton Bay’. Antonio must have arrived in Queensland fairly soon afterwards as he was admitted to the Moreton Bay Hospital in July 1843 suffering ‘Catarrhus’. After ten days in hospital, he was discharged.
In March 1848 Antonio was granted a conditional pardon, a stipulation of which was that he could not return to the United Kingdom where he had been sentenced to transportation. In May 1849 he was again admitted to the Moreton Bay Hospital.
On 29 January 1853, Emanuel Antoni [sic] married Anne Crickard in Brisbane. Anne was a 29-year-old emigrant who arrived in Brisbane on the ship America in January 1852. She was described in the ship’s indent as a laundress from County Down, Ireland. There are no records of any children born to Emanuel and Anne Antonio, nor is there any other positive trace of the couple in Queensland records after 1853.
Jan Richardson, ‘Emanuel Antonio (ca. 1797 – )’, Harry Gentle Resource Centre, Griffith University, 2022, https://harrygentle.griffith.edu.au/life-stories/emanuel-antonio/.
Emanuel Antonio per Clyde (1832).
Emanuel Antonio per Clyde (1832), Ticket of leave no. 40/2183, dated 8 Oct 1840, 'Altered to Moreton Bay 20th March 1843'.
Emanuel Antony [sic], admitted 11 Jul 1843, p. 188.
Emanuel Antonio per Clyde (1832), Pardon No. 48/615, 1 March 1848.
Ann [sic] Crickard per America, arrived Moreton Bay 15 Jan 1832 aged 29.
Manuel [sic] Antonio, admitted 25 May 1849, pp. 49, 52.
"Stabbing with intent to murder", Morning Post [London], 25 Oct 1831.
"Old Bailey", London Packet, 26 Oct 1831.