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Tasmania's Heritage
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SUB-GROUPS

i - Northern Tasmania

ALPHABETICAL CONDUCT REGISTERS OF CONVICTS LIVING IN NORTHERN TASMANIA

CON78

c.1822-c.1844.  3 vols. 

These volumes were apparently commenced about 1834 in Launceston, and entries before that are made retrospectively;  there are often discrepancies between the details given here and those in the conduct registers (CON31), and it appears that the earlier particulars were copied from some other source known as "the original Black Books";  sometimes, for example, earlier and later offences are recorded here, and sometimes offences recorded in the conduct records do not appear here.

The details given include number, name, ship, original sentence and offences (with particulars of sentence and magistrate) and both men and women are included.

MUSTER ROLL OF MALE CONVICTS IN GEORGE TOWN AND LAUNCESTON

CON79

Oct 1823.  1 vol. 

This was intended as an elaborate register of convicts at the two places as at 13 and 17 October 1823 respectively;  the headings include provision for details of conviction and sentence, marital state and children, land owned or leased, state of its development and production, stock owned (with brand marks), assigned servants.  But most columns are usually left blank, and the only details regularly given are name, ship and in whose employ.  The arrangement is roughly alphabetical.

REGISTER OF MALE CONVICTS ASSIGNED IN THE NORTH

CON80

c.Oct 1824.  1 vol. 

The purpose of this volume appears to have been somewhat similar to that of CON79, though the tabulation differs;  it provides for number, name and ship of convict, date of arrival, when and where convicted, sentence, whether married and number of children under sixteen, whether holding a ticket-of-leave or to whom assigned;  most of these columns are usually left blank, but that for "Ticket of Leave" or to whom assigned is always used, and indicates the settler or the public department to whose service the man is sent.  The last column gives details of land, stock, physical marks and emancipation.  The arrangement is roughly alphabetical.

REGISTER OF PASSES TO TRAVEL GRANTED TO CONVICTS ASSIGNED IN THE NORTH

CON81

Sep 1828-Jan 1833.  1 vol.

Passes were issued to convicts who had occasion to travel, and had to be presented to the local police of their destination.  This register, which relates to Launceston and the surrounding areas, gives the following information:  pass number and date returnable, convict's name, number, master or residence, or whether on ticket-of-leave, where proceeding and to whose service, and date pass returned.  Both men and women are included, and the arrangement is roughly alphabetical.

REGISTER OF PASSES TO TRAVEL GRANTED TO CONVICTS IN THE NORTH, TOGETHER WITH QUARTERLY MUSTER ROLLS

CON82

4 Sep 1841-2 Nov 1844.  1 vol.

The pass register, which at first is arranged roughly alphabetically, is interspersed with muster rolls taken quarterly by pass number;  the details given include date and number of pass, number, name and ship of convict, in whose service and residence.  The volume relates to Launceston and surrounding area, and includes both men and women.

ALPHABETICAL LIST OF TICKET-OF-LEAVE HOLDERS IN NORTHERN TASMANIA, SHOWING EMPLOYERS

CON83

c.1832-c.1835.  1 vol.

Labelled a "Ticket-of-Leave Book" and maintained at the Launceston Police Office, this volume gives number, name, sentence, ship, and by whom and where employed, number of pass, remarks.  The columns for employment were kept in pencil to allow alterations, and the remarks include details of death, emancipation, absence from muster, etc.

ALPHABETICAL REGISTER OF THE APPROPRIATION OF CONVICTS IN THE NORTH

CON84

1833-c.1835.  1 vol.

This volume was maintained in Launceston and relates only to convicts stationed north of Oatlands.  The information is tabulated under the following headings:  number, name, height, complexion, hair, eyes, age, trade, where and when tried, sentence, ship, native place, marks and how employed.  This last column was entered in pencil which was often rubbed out and changes substituted.  After the initial of their surname, the convicts are usually arranged by ship.  The section for "A" is missing.

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ii - Macquarie Harbour

COMMANDANT'S LETTER BOOK

CON85

20 Aug 1829-13 Sep 1833.  1 vol. 

The Commandant's letters were mostly addressed to the Colonial Secretary, but some are to other officers at Macquarie Harbour, which was established as a penal settlement by Lieutenant-Governor Sorell at the end of 1821 and continued until it was abandoned in November 1833.

The subjects dealt with here include escapes, murders, supplies, emancipation, the despatch to Hobart of goods made at the settlement, buildings, the construction of vessels, the conduct of prisoners and finally the breaking up of the settlement.  The Colonial Secretary's letterbook classified at CSO43 corresponds with this volume.

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iii - Tasman Peninsula

LETTER FROM THE COLONIAL SECRETARY TO THE COMMANDANT, PORT ARTHUR

CON86

9 Jan 1834.  1 folder.

This is the only example of the Commandant's inward correspondence;  the letter encloses two lists of sixty-eight boys sent to the settlement on the following day on the Tamar.  The lists give name and number of convict, ship, date of conviction and term.

ARCHITECTURAL DRAWINGS OF BUILDINGS AT PENAL SETTLEMENT ON TASMAN'S PENINSULA

CON87

1836.  1 vol.

These coloured drawing, by Henry Laing, a convict draftsman who was transported on the Thames in 1829, consist of block plans, plans, elevations and sections and purport to include all those buildings existing on the Peninsula in 1836:  at Port Arthur itself, Point Puer, Eaglehawk Neck, Coal Point, Slopen Main, Norfolk Bay.  Some buildings were proposed only, or only partly completed, and many no longer exist.

REGISTER OF PRISONERS DISCHARGED FROM A PENAL STATION

CON88

c.Aug 1844-c.Sep 1848.  1 folder.

This is a fragment, one folio, of what was probably a Port Arthur register, part of the section for "G", recording the discharge of prisoners.  The information includes police number, name, local number, ship, destination and date of discharge.

RETURNS OF MEN DISCHARGED FROM THE INVALID STATION AT IMPRESSION BAY

CON89

3 May-24 May 1851.  1 folder.

These are two returns, addressed by the Superintendent of Impression Bay Station to the Comptroller-General, giving details of four ex-convicts being discharged at their own request from the Hospital:  ship of original transportation, the date of expiration of sentence, physical condition, date of and reason for discharge from the Hospital.

REGISTER OF PRISONERS RECEIVED AT A PENAL STATION

CON90

Mar-Apr 1852.  1 folder.

This is a fragment, probably from a Port Arthur register.  The tabulation is:  name, ship, trade, religion, whether can read or write, cipher(?), whether can say the Lord's Prayer, where it was learned, whether under magisterial sentence, whether a passholder or a ticket-of-leave holder under sentence, whether under Supreme Court sentence to hard labour, whether free by servitude or never transported, number of times transported, class (first or second), where placed at the settlement (i.e., carpenter's shop, wood gang, mason's gang etc.).

JOURNAL OF THE WARDEN OF THE SEPARATE PRISON

CON91

4 Jun-12 Sep 1858.   1 vol.

The Separate Treatment Prison where silence was enforced, was substituted for flogging as a punishment.  This journal of the warden (J. Marshall) has an entry for each night which records the names of the officer and constable on night duty, and whether they have reported all to be correct.  The warden reports the result of his own tour of inspection, events of the day, particularly recalcitrant behaviour by prisoners, and notes the names of prisoners received and discharged.  The volume is numbered "21".

REGISTER OF THE EMPLOYMENT OF CONVICTS

CON92

c.1865-Dec 1868.  1 vol.

This is a "Gang Credit Book", showing the conduct and number of days worked in each month by those convicts employed in gangs at agricultural labour at Settlement Farm and Garden Point.  According to an instruction written in the front, the book had to be entered up and signed weekly by the overseers, and sent to the Civil Commandant's Office on the first of each month.

Each prisoner is entered on a separate sheet, with columns for the following entries:  date, class (first, second or third), nature of employment, amount of work performed, conduct, industry and reference letter (B,C,D or S).  The page is headed with the convict's name and his ship.

LOG BOOK OF THE SCHOONER HARRIET

CON93

5 Jun 1869-17 Nov 1871.  1 vol.

This vessel made a regular run from Hobart to Port Arthur carrying cargo, which is rarely specified in entries in the log except as timber.  Occasional passengers are named, but no mention is made of convicts being shipped back and forth from Hobart.  Remarks on weather fill most entries.

CONDUCT REGISTERS, PORT ARTHUR

CON94

1868-1869,  Aug 1873-30Sep 1876.  2 vols.

These are volumes "17" and "19" of a series of which "19" is the last.  They are in the same printed format as those in CON33, but many headings are not used.  Their purpose seems mainly to have been to record time served in various stages of punishment, the accumulation of credit marks by task work, and of money earned.  Offences, meritorious conduct and remissions are noted.

Many prisoners are not originally transported, and the second volume records many as being transferred to Hobart on 17 April 1877, when Port Arthur was closed.  The arrangement is roughly alphabetical and the first volume has a separate index in it.

MAP OF TASMAN PENINSULA, SHOWING SIGNAL STATIONS, AND A LIST SHOWING THE DISTRIBUTION OF PRISONERS AND OFFICIALS

CON149

2 May 1879.   1 roll.

The map extends from Hobart to the Peninsula, indicates the signal and other stations, and the roads, and lists the officials and prisoners at each.  The list summarizes the strength of officials and inmates of each station, the latter divided into prisoners, paupers and lunatics.

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iv - Prisoners Barracks, Hobart

SUPERINTENDENT'S INWARD CORRESPONDENCE

CON95

1 Aug-30 Aug 1837,  2 May,  23 Oct 1840.
2 vols and 1 parcel. 

Most of the communications are on printed forms from the Principal Superintendent and concern the disposal of convicts;  for example, the release of particular men as assigned servants, or of those whose terms at the Barracks have expired, or of those who have been appointed constables.  There are also particular requests from settlers, forwarded through the Principal Superintendent, for skilled mechanics, and memoranda from the Superintendents of other stations and the heads of departments concerning particular men.  Associated papers include passes and memorials for indulgences.

REGISTERS OF RATIONS ISSUED TO PRISONERS

CON96

Jan 1843,  Sep 1849,  Aug 1850,  Mar 1851.  4 vols.

The information is tabulated under headings: place where convict was last rationed, name, ship and number, place to which convict discharged (including name of employer, where applicable).  Each day's rations are noted against the days of the month, and the daily rations are totalled under the class of diet, i.e., full, half, solitary or mechanic's (which included tea and sugar).

The first two volumes are roughly alphabetical and the third and fourth carry an index.

REGISTERS OF CHARGES LAID AND SENTENCES IMPOSED ON PRISONERS UNDER PROBATION

CON97

1 Jan 1844-14 Jul 1845,  21 Aug 1850-18 Feb 1854.  2 vols.

Each entry gives name, ship, convict's place of employment (where applicable), charge, plea, complainant's evidence, verdict and sentence.  The prisoners charged are either already in the Barracks or have been taken there after apprehension;  many of the offences are committed within the Barracks.  The second volume carries an index.

SALARY ABSTRACTS OF OFFICERS EMPLOYED

CON98

1 Jun 1844-31 May 1852.  1 vol.

The monthly abstracts of salaries of the officers staffing the Prisoner's Barracks are set out as follows:  the first two columns list each man's situation and name, and the columns that follow show the period dealt with, the officer's yearly and (in some cases) daily salary, the gross amount in sterling for the month, the amount of income tax taken, and finally the next amount for the month.  This is totalled.  Only a small number of officers, such as the superintendent and certain overseers, are taxed:  this is because they are in the Imperial Service;  in accordance with legislation indicated by an instruction issued by Lord Stanley in December 1842,114  they are liable to taxation, while officers under the colonial service are not.  The instruction stated that all salaries and personal allowances paid from the revenues of Great Britain were to be taxed at the rate of 7d. in the pound except in cases where the annual income did not amount to £150.  However, incomes of £100 also became taxable soon afterwards.  The majority of the Officers and Constables at the Barracks are employees of the Colonial Service.  They include a clerk, a storekeeper, a miller, a gatekeeper, and a number of constables.

There also appear in this book abstracts of salaries of officers employed at the Old Wharf station.

SUPERINTENDENT'S JOURNAL

CON99

22 Feb 1850-11 May 1851.  1 vol. 

J.M. May held office as Superintendent during this period;  the volume records his inspections and notes such things as the state of the prisoners and their quarters;  the visits of magistrate and clergymen;  resignations, inward and outward correspondence, rations, misdemeanours, reprimands and other domestic matters.

DEPUTY SUPERINTENDENT'S JOURNAL

CON100

26 Jan 1854-21 Nov 1855.  1 vol.

Thomas Reidy was Deputy Superintendent during the period covered by this volume.  Weekday entries record the time of seeing the prisoners turn out in the morning, prayers, mustering of gangs, and inspection.  A tour of inspection is then recorded, and a verdict on the quality of rations.  Any extraordinary occurrence is recorded, as are complaints and receipt or discharge of prisoners.  Any neglect of duty by subordinates is noted, and attendance at evening prayers and classes.  On Sundays, Catholic and Protestant services are noted, as well as the inspection parade.

GATEKEEPER'S JOURNAL

CON101

1 Sep 1859-28 Aug 1860.  1 vol.

J. Smith held this position;  he makes an entry on a separate page for each day.  On weekdays he records the following;  time of men being marched to gang-labour;  visit to the men in close confinement and complaints;  men being received or discharged;  and any extraordinary occurrences such as escapes.  The gatekeeper makes a visit to the dormitories at night.  On Sundays he records his attendance at the general parade, where he read the local regulations.  Each day's entry is initialled by the Superintendent.

MISCELLANEOUS PAPERS

CON102

2 Aug 1838-29 May 1856.  1 folder.

This small collection includes instructions to the Superintendent, warrants of commitment, warrants to remove, and correspondence about stores.

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v - Committee of Officersm for Reviewing Convict Expenditure

MINUTES OF MEETINGS

CON103

18 Oct 1843-21 Dec 1847,  8 Jan-29 Nov 1853.  6 vols. .

The Committee met for the first time on 18 October 1843.  The first volume of its minutes is entered up from drafts;  the others are original, forwarded by the Secretary 
to the Lieutenant-Governor through the Colonial Secretary, and by him back to the Secretary, with comments.  The subjects dealt with are expenditure on furniture, rations, salaries, accommodation, allowances building, additional staff.  The members of the Committee throughout this period were the Colonial Secretary, the Comptroller-General and the Deputy Commissionary-General.

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vi - Maria Island

LETTERBOOK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT, LONG POINT STATION

CON104

14 Jul-7 Nov 1846.  1 folder.

This is a fragment of several pages which have been badly water-damaged.  H.W. Wigmore was Superintendent at this time, and his letters concern the arrival of prisoners, their completion of sentences, stores, buildings, offences, agricultural produce and live stock.

Maria Island was first used as a penal settlement from 1825 until 1832, when Port Arthur took over from it;  this fragment belongs to its second period (1842-1852) in this capacity, when there were two Probation Stations on the island;  one at the old settlement of Darlington, the other at Long Point.  The latter was closed down in 1852.

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vii - Female House of Correction, Hobart

DESCRIPTION LISTS OF PRISONERS

CON105

c.1873-Jun 1879.  2 vols.

The normal printed headings (as in CON18) are used, so far as they apply to women, and details of ship, civil condition, religion, crime, when tried and sentence are added.  The latter three particulars all concern local convictions.  Sometimes information on relatives and previous history is also given.  Details of physical appearance are not entered regularly, and not at all after August 1878.

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