MARY MAGEE was the daughter of First Fleet convicts CHRISTOPHER MAGEE (alias CHARLES WILLIAMS) and ELEANOR McCABE. MARY’s elder brother JAMES MAGEE was the first person ever buried in the Parramatta Burial Ground (St. John’s Cemetery, Parramatta), when he died, aged only two months old.
MARY MAGEE drowned with her pregnant mother and convict MARY GREEN when a boat they were in overset on the Parramatta River. Though baby MARY and ELEANOR appear in the St. John’s burial register, neither of them were buried at the cemetery itself. CHRISTOPHER buried ELEANOR, the unborn MAGEE child, and MARY MAGEE metres from his front doorstep on their farm at Camellia, overlooking the Parramatta River. Their lone grave in unconsecrated ground remains in situ to this day.
- Alternate: MARY MEGEE (c.f. burial record)
- Born: c. January 1791
- Baptised: 30 January 1791
- Died: 18 January 1793, Parramatta River, near Breakfast Point, Port Jackson, Colony of New South Wales
- Buried: 21 January 1793, Magee Farm, Camellia
- Buried in a lone, marked grave in the present-day factory at 1 Grand Avenue, Camellia.
Abstract: Even a burial ground, where so many stories ended, has many beginnings. The story of St. John’s Cemetery, Parramatta begins among knee-high native grass on ‘a gently sloping hill’ in the life-sustaining hunting grounds of the Burramattagal clan of the Darug people. It also begins with newcomers enclosing that once open space to preserve their cattle from wandering. Yet the story of this cemetery just as surely begins with its first burial; a tale for which three saints of London, St. John, St. James, and St. Giles, shall serve as our guides. The three saints will lead us to a plantation in the American colonies, a royal palace, and even among the ‘swarm[s]’ of ‘strumpets’—the ‘notoriously lascivious and profligate’ ‘ladies of the pavement’—on ‘Lewkner’s Lane.’ Read more>>
- David Collins, An Account of the English Colony in New South Wales, Volume 1, (London: Printed for T. Cadell Jun. and W. Davies, in the Strand, 1798), p. 264, https://books.google.com.au/books?id=yOpOAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA264#v=snippet&q=eleanor&f=false, accessed 29 March 2019. For slightly different wording of the same episode see David Collins, An Account of the English Colony in New South Wales, (Melbourne and London: Whitcombe and Tombs Limited, n.d.), p. 172 https://archive.org/details/accountofenglish00colluoft/page/172, accessed 29 March 2019.
- Parish Baptism Registers, Textual Records, St. John’s Anglican Church Parramatta, New South Wales, Australia.
- Parish Burial Registers, Textual Records, St. John’s Anglican Church Parramatta, New South Wales, Australia.
# Convicts’ Child
# Born in colony
# Burial Place: Camellia
# Burial Year: 1793
# Grave: marked