Mary Leeche (c.1814–1834)

MARY LEECHE was a free woman who emigrated to the colony on the ship called David Scott (1834). MARY and her newborn daughter LUCY died within days of each other at the Parramatta Female Factory’s “lying in” hospital. MARY’s recorded age on arrival was nineteen, but her recorded age at death was twenty.


  • Alternate: MARY LEECH


  • Born: c. 1814
  • Sailed for the colony per migrant ship David Scott while pregnant: 10 July 1834, London, England
  • Arrived per David Scott: 25 October 1834, Port Jackson, New South Wales
  • Landed: 30 October 1834, Sydney, New South Wales
  • Daughter LUCY LEECHE born: c. 28 November 1834, lying-in hospital, Parramatta Female Factory
  • Daughter LUCY LEECHE died: c. 30 November 1834, Parramatta Female Factory
  • Daughter LUCY LEECHE buried: 30 November 1834, St. John’s Parish, Parramatta
  • MARY died: c. 3 December 1834, Parramatta Female Factory
  • MARY buried: 3 December 1834, St. John’s Parish, Parramatta

Burial Location

  • Unmarked grave, St. John’s Parish, Parramatta, exact location unknown.


  • Mother of LUCY LEECHE

Related Content

‘The Indifferent Characters of Many of the Females: Mary Leeche and Colonial Controversy in the 1830s (2021)

By Alexander Cameron-Smith

Abstract: Lucy Leeche was laid to rest on 30 November 1834. She had been just two days old when she died at the Parramatta Female Factory Hospital. Her mother, twenty-year-old Mary Leeche, died a couple of days later, also at the Hospital, and was buried on the third of December. Mary had arrived in the colony in late October 1834 aboard the “David Scott,” one of several chartered vessels that brought single women to Australia as free immigrants between 1832 and 1836. In a time when New South Wales free society was highly sensitive to issues of status and respectability, the scheme aimed to ease moral anxiety about the gender imbalance in the colonies and supply domestic labour for pastoral expansion. It instead provoked outrage in both colonial and English newspapers, which accused the London-based organisers of either deceiving innocent women with misleading impressions of the colonies or dumping prostitutes on the streets of Cadi (Sydney) and Parramatta in Burramattagal Country. The women brought to New South Wales, whose own voices are rarely found in the historical sources, were thus portrayed in the abstract, as either paragons of virtue, poor victims of temptation, or already wicked and beyond redemption. At the same time, many blamed the “David Scott” for introducing a highly contagious disease, which erupted into an epidemic across New South Wales. Read more>>




# Immigrant

# Came Free

# Ship: David Scott (1834)

# Parramatta Female Factory

# Death Place: Parramatta Female Factory

# Burial Year: 1834

# Burial Registration: St. John’s Parish, Parramatta

# Grave: unmarked