Downton Parish
 1st group leaves
 1836 200+ leave
 Arrival in Quebec
 Talbot Settlement
 Emigrant List

April 1836 - Mass Exodus

19th Century Illustration

By the end of February 1836, having received authorization to borrow money for the emigration, Parish Overseers were in contact with J.D. Pinnock Esq. Agent General for Emigration at the Colonial office. In a February 26th reply to Overseer R.H. Hooper, Pinnock asks him to send a list with the names and ages of each emigrant. He also instructs Hooper to deposit money into his London bank account, at which time he will engage passage on a ship in either March or April, to depart from Southampton or Poole.

The following notice was then published:

    Downton February 28th 1836

    Notice is hereby given, that all Fathers of Families, and all single persons, who wish to emigrate to Canada, are to attend a meeting of the vestry, tomorrow at three o'clock in the afternoon, at the vestry room ,at the church, for the purpose of securing their passage and other necessary arrangements

    By order of the Select Vestry

On that day representatives of 220 people showed up for the meeting. There must have been considerable excitement in the surrounding area, because by February 29th the neighbouring parish, Whiteparish, was contacting Pinnock with a complete list of names and all the forms filled out as required by law, requesting that a group of their poor be included.

On March 12th, Pinnock  wrote a letter to the parish stating that he has found a four year old British built vessel, the King William. She was to be fitted up to carry 230 adults, and will have a surgeon on board.
After all this work, Pinnock did not want to chance that people would get cold feet and want to stay. In an April 5th letter to Colonial Office officials at Quebec concerning the King William, Pinnock advises the following:

    …but with a view to prevent any from seceding after their embarkation, it has been stipulated that the vessel shall sail immediately [when?] they are on board.

No direct evidence, such as receipts, names of emigrants, or accounts of the second group's trip seems to have survived at the parish level.  The Alderbury poorhouse Minute Book  records a request from Downton parish  for shoes for the poor about to emigrate from the parish, this seems to be all that has survived.

The King William sailed on April 7th, 1836.