All Tasmanian archives + heritage
From 1788 to 1868 over 160,000 men, women and children were punished with transportation to Australia. On this page you will find links to information on the life of convicts before their arrival in Australia and their journey to Australia.
The first freed convicts in VDL were those who arrived in 1803. The better behaved of them were given land. Those who were free by the 1860s did not fare so well. The period in which freedom was given made a difference to later prospects.
Although they were servants, as they were needed to ensure a productive economy, convicts had a measure of power. They were given a ration of food and clothing as set out in official regulations.
Founders and Survivors Storylines tells an extraordinary story about the making of modern Australia based on the world heritage-listed convict records of Tasmania.