1800 16 11 09
Want some help?
Does this page need updating?
What to expect when accessing records about you.
Look for Similar
Other Find & Connect resources
Event Juvenile offender hanged (6 April 1844)
- 6 April 1844
- 6 April 1844
In the early years of the Swan River Colony, there was no concept of courts treating young offenders differently from adults. This approach had its most glaring example in the hanging of John Gavin, who was only 15 years of age at the time of his execution.
Gavin had been a 'Parkhurst Boy', part of the State's first child migration scheme which brought juvenile offenders from a British prison to work on the land in WA. According to a newspaper report a the time, the jury took only 30 minutes to find Gavin guilty.
As last public hanging took place 12 years later (on 14 January 1856) it is possible that John Gavin was executed in full view of the Perth public.
- Chate, A.H.; Graham, Bruce; Oakley, Glenda, Date it!: a Western Australian chronology to 1929, Friends of the Battye Library (Inc.), Northbridge, WA, 1991. Details
Sources used to compile this entry: Chate, A.H; Graham, Bruce; Oakley, Glenda, Date it!: a Western Australian chronology to 1929, Friends of the Battye Library (Inc.), Northbridge, WA, 1991; 'Quarter Sessions', Inquirer, 10 April 1844, p. 2, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article65583189.
Prepared by: Debra Rosser
Created: 18 January 2012, Last modified: 27 February 2012