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Convicts and transportation




Source: In 1879 J. A. Heaton published a ‘Book of Dates’ relating to the early years of the Colony of New South Wales. It is an extraordinary work and provides facts, figures and observations on a wide range of ‘colonial doings’. All spelling, including place names, has been left as per the original documents


Destruction, of Rum. John Tawell, a member of the Society of Friends, to show his devotion to the cause of temperance, ordered upwards of six hundred gallons of rum to be emptied into Port Jackson March 9, 1836.


An Extraordinary Sentence.  The following took place in Sydney, September 23, 1829:—the prisoner was tried before Mr. Justice Dowling and found guilty of stealing a pair of oars; sentence, to be imprisoned one calendar month, and on the last day of his imprisonment to be publicly whipped from the police office to the King-street wharf.


Remarkable case of a series of weeks suffered by the same people. The Mermaid, Colonial Government cutter, left Sydney for Raffles Bay, but on entering Torres Straits she got on shore, and was lost. All on board were saved upon a rock. In three days afterwards the  Swiftsure, Captain Johnson, which sailed from Tasmania, hove in sight, and took on board the captain and crew of the Mermaid, but in three days she also got on shore, and was wrecked. Two days afterwards the  Governor Ready, also from Hobart Town, Tasmania (April 2), passing within sight, took the shipwrecked people belonging to the Mermaid  and Swiftsure on board; but was itself wrecked on May 18, but all the people saved by taking refuge in the long boats. The ship “Comet,” also from Tasmania, soon after took the whole of the collected crews of the lost ships  Mermaid, Swiftsure, and Governor Ready  on board, but was herself wrecked, but all hands saved. At last the ship Jupiter, from Tasmania, came in sight, and taking all on board, steered for Port Raffles, at the entrance to which harbour she got on shore, and received so much damage that she may be said to have been wrecked. 1829.


A man found guilty of stealing a pair of oars sentenced to be imprisoned one calendar month, and on the last day of his imprisonment to be publicly whipped from the Police Office to the King-street Wharf, September 23, 1829.


A conspiracy was got up among the prisoners who were being conveyed to Norfolk Island in the Governor Phillip, to murder the crew and guard, but it was discovered and fortunately frustrated. The notorious Knatchbull, who was on board, was, it was alleged, the principal conspirator, 1832.