Research into Convict Administration

Research into convict administration helps understanding of research into female convicts and convict institutions. Research Tasmania has conducted research into the regulations for probation passholders and memorials for indulgence.

 

Regulations for Probation Passholders

Further research is being undertaken into the regulations by which convicts were required to repay their transportation costs upon arrival in order to be eligible for indulgences, including Tickets of Leave. This follows on from information in A Drift of 'Derwent Ducks'.

This scheme was strongly promoted by Lord Earl Grey, but in Tasmania the Comptroller General, JS Hampton, and the Lieutenant-Governor, Sir William Denison, argued that it was unworkable and so suspended the scheme a year or two after it was implemented.

The following correspondences, held in the Tasmanian Archive and Heritage Office (TAHO), relate to the scheme for convicts to repay the cost of their transportation prior to being able to obtain a Ticket of Leave.

  • GO 33/1/65 No.195 pp.437–508: 28 Sep 1848, from Denison to Earl Grey, initial reaction to scheme
  • GO 33/1/69 No.9 pp.41–94: 8 Jan 1850, from Denison to Earl Grey, notes on scheme
  • GO 1/1/78 No.114 pp.103–167: 25 Jul 1850, from Earl Grey to Denison, changes to scheme re amount paid and now compulsory (3 enclosures)
  • GO 33/1/71 No.168 pp.409–419: 25 Jul 1850, from Denison to Earl Grey
  • GO 25/1/17 No.171 pp.252–260: 27 Jul 1850, from Denison to Earl Grey, reiteration of improbability of scheme
  • GO 33/1/72 No.253 pp.607–639: 3 Dec 1850, from Denison to Earl Grey
  • GO 1/1/82 No.156 pp.183–222: 4 Aug 1851, from Earl Grey to Denison
  • GO 33/1/74 No.140 pp.418–450: 3 Oct 1851, Denison to Earl Grey
  • GO 33/1/75 No.24 pp.304–331: 31 Jan 1852, from Denison to Earl Grey, requesting permission to terminate the scheme (including memorandum from Hampton)
  • GO 1/1/85 No.58: 1 Jul 1852, from Pakington to Denison, permission to terminate the scheme

 

Memorials for Indulgence

An index of the CON 44 series held at the Tasmanian Heritage and Archives Office (TAHO) has been compiled. Memorials for indulgence include memorials for Tickets of Leave, Permissions to Marry, Conditional Pardons, etc.

 

Research into Female Convicts

Research Tasmania conducts extensive research into female convicts transported to Van Diemen's Land. The female convicts transported on the Australasia in 1849 and the Rajah in 1841 have been researched in depth.

 

Australasia 1849 Female Convicts

This research project resulted in the publication of A Drift of 'Derwent Ducks': Lives of the 200 female Irish convicts transported on the Australasia from Dublin to Hobart in 1849 in 2005.

Further research on these convicts is currently being undertaken in order to publish a 2nd edition of the book.

View the convict records for these women.

Read biographies of the 200 female convicts transported on the Australasia in 1849. (You need to be logged in to the website to access these.)

Pre-order a 2nd edtion of A Drift of 'Derwent Ducks'.

 

Rajah 1841 Female Convicts

This research project is currently being undertaken with Dr Dianne Snowden. The life of each of the 180 Rajah convicts is being researched and we are trying to identify those who were involved in making the Rajah Quilt.

View the convict records for these women.

Read biographies of the 180 female convicts transported on the Rajah in 1841. (You need to be logged in to the website to access these.)

Pre-order a copy of Patchwork Prisoners.

 

Research into Convict Institutions

Research Tasmania conducts research into convict institutions in Van Diemen's Land, particularly those established for female convicts. A current research project investigates life in the Cascades Female Factory between 1850 and 1856

 

Cascades Female Factory 1850–1856

Research has begun on life in the Cascades Female Factory under the superintendence of John M May, between 1850 and 1856. The Factory ceased operation as a factory in 1856, with control transferred to colonial authorities. Information is being collected on the employees and convicts who there during this period. The punishment books which cover this period have already been transcribed. The research will culminate in a book about the Factory during this period.

 

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