Thomas Henry Davis, a Carriage Lamp Maker, was born in St.Pancras, Middlesex, England in 1801 and married Ann(e) Hannah Young who was born in St.Martins, Middlesex in 1802. Together they had eight children who were all born in St.Georges, Middlesex: Emma b1821; Thomas b1821; Charles b1824; Ann(e) b1826; William b1828; Martha b1830; Sarah b1833 and Eliza b1836. The Davis Family resided at 7 Hart Street, St.George Hanover Square, Middlesex from at least 1841 to at least 1881. (Ref:1841, 1851, 1861, 1871 and 1881 Census entries) Hart Street, St.George Hanover Square is now known as Brown Hart Gardens, Westminster. (Ref: Lost London Streets Index)
By the 1871 census their daughter Emma was living at 7 Hart Street with her husband Samuel Higham who had been a partner with Thomas Davis Jnr in the "Davis and Higham" business. (Ref: Entry of "Davis and Higham Carriage Lamp Makers", 1875 London Commercial Directory) Prior to this, all other entries of the business were listed as, "Thomas Davis, Carriage Lamp Maker". (Ref: 1846 and 1865 London Commercial Directory ~ Thomas Snr passed away in June 1861 and his son Thomas Jnr then took over the family business). Sarah married Samuel Higham's brother Frederick and went to Victoria, Australia. She later married Evans Brown.
Contrary to a recent publication's reference to Hart Street, this was by no means a poor area of London.(Ref:Charles Booth's Map of London ~ be patient as it takes a while to load) ~ Hart Street is located just above Grosvenor Square (scroll map down), off Duke Street to the left, just before Oxford Street. In fact the Davis Family had their own business beneath their dwelling from at least 1846 (Ref: London Commercial Directory 1846) and in 1861 Thomas and Ann had a servant and several apprentices. (Ref: 1861 census) When Thomas Davis Snr passed away in 1861, he left 3,000 pounds (today worth 300,000 pounds) to his second wife Elizabeth ~ Ann his first wife and mother of his children passed away sometime after 1851.
Charles' brothers, Thomas and William were listed along with Charles as apprentice Carriage Lamp Makers in the 1841 census. There is some evidence to suggest that William may have gone on to establish his own business as, "William Davis Carriage Lamp Maker" at 17 Wells Street W & 5 Castle Court, Oxford Street W from at least 1865. (Ref: London Commercial Directory 1865)
Charles Davis was caught robbing a till at the age of 17; as a first offender he was dealt with reasonably leniantly, and served three months in gaol. Following his release he was caught stealing a silk handkerchief. In the eyes of authorities he was now a habitual petty thief, and on the 5th of April 1841, he was sentenced to transportation for ten years in the Central Criminal Court. While waiting for his sentence to be carried out, Charles spent ten months in a hulk, a ship moored offshore and used as a gaol. On the 2nd of April 1842 the "Candahar" set sail from Spithead and arrived in Hobart Town, VDL on the 20th of July 1842 with 249 male convicts. This is where the story of Charles Davis really begins.