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Orphan Number: 1815
Orphan: Eliza FIELD
Mother's ship:
Father's ship:
Age when admitted:9yrs
Date admitted:9 Jun 1837
Date discharged:9 Nov 1841
Institution(s):Queens Orphan School
Discharged to: Dr Learmonth
Remarks: parents dead
References: SWD28, CSO5/93/2074, CSO5/86/1885

This orphan has been claimed by: Elizabeth Field

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This orphan has been claimed by: Robyn Watters

(aka Francisco, Frank; Feild)
Born 1796 (estimate), England
Burial 16 May 1837, Norfolk Plains, Longford, Tasmania

(aka Catherine Rowan, Kitty Rowen, Kitty Rowan)
Born 1794 (estimate), Londonderry, Ireland
Died before 9 September 1836, Norfolk Plains, Longford, Tasmania

Baptised 1828, Launceston, New South Wales
Died Unknown

Born 6 February 1825, Dumfries, Scotland
Died 18 January 1879, Wilcannia, New South Wales

Born c. 1861 Talbot, Victoria
Died 23 April 1919, Port Melbourne, Victoria


Author Robyn Watters, Great Great Great Granddaughter of
Francis Field and Catherine Rowen; Mobile 0419 554 525; 15 July 2018

Family Tree on is ‘Brown’

Francis Field and Kitty Rowen

Frank and Kitty were convicts. Frank was transported for 7 years in the Warwick Assizes. Kitty was a servant and stole some linen. She was also transported for 7 years. This common experience saw an Englishman and an Irishwoman start the Field family in Australia.

Frank and Kitty gave birth to one, if not two children before they were married in the Launceston St. John’s Church of England by Reverend John Youl in 1826.
Frank and Kitty in total gave birth to eight children, three boys and five girls.

Elizabeth Field

Elizabeth was their sixth child and she was born in 1828. Elizabeth became the wife of Henry Duncan who is the father of the Duncan clan in Australia.

Elizabeth, child of convicts Frank and Kitty Field, was orphaned by the age of 9 and placed along with three of her siblings, in the Queens Orphan School, New Town, Tasmania in 1837. Her father Frank had died in May of that year and her mother Kitty had died the year before. There was some familial support for Elizabeth having one older sibling and two younger ones at the School.

Nevertheless, the children were scattered to the four winds upon discharge and indeed Elizabeth was discharged 5 ½ years before her younger sister Maria.


Elizabeth made her way to Geelong in January 1848. Her younger sister Maria had been discharged to a Dr. Clark of Geelong nearly 2 years earlier. This may well have provided Elizabeth with a reason and familial support to go.

In any event, Elizabeth had been discharged, also to a doctor, being John Learmonth of Launceston. Perhaps Elizabeth thought she could get a good reference based on her association with Dr. Learmonth to allow her to work with the medical fraternity that her sister’s employer may introduce her to.

Whatever the situation was, Elizabeth, like so many children of convicts, crossed the Tasman. Within 11 months of her arrival, she was married in Geelong. Her spouse was Henry Duncan of Dumfries, Scotland.

Henry Duncan and Elizabeth Field

Together Henry and Elizabeth had 9 children, 5 boys and 4 girls starting their family in 1850 in Geelong and going to Talbot.

We know what happened to Henry Duncan. He either lead the way or joined their son William Field Duncan in Wilcannia where the former was a boarding house keeper. Henry died there aged 53 in 1879 and their son William Field was married there on New Year’s Eve 1883 aged 22.

The union of William Field and Sarah Jane George also produced 9 children. They were born in Wilcannia, Menindee and Broken Hill. The last two though were born in Victoria. William Field may have thought it politic to go to Victoria where his wife Sarah’s mother was in the late 1800s.

This move by the Duncan family back to humble South Melbourne and Port Melbourne western New South Wales, provided them with exposure to city living. It enabled William Field Duncan and Sarah’s children to have upward mobility.

You can use this contact form to send an email message to Robyn Watters

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 Site last updated June 2021