Sep 23, 2010

UK 'Floating Prison' to the First Mayor of Parramatta

Ancestry database has launched online the Prison Hulk Registers and Letter Books, 1802-1849 - the records of almost 200,000 convicts who were imprisoned on giant floating gaols known as prison hulks. The records, the originals which are held by The National Archives in Kew, UK provide a fascinating insight into the Victorian criminal underworld and conditions aboard the Dickensian ships, which were introduced to ease overcrowded London prisons, often holding inmates prior to transportation to the Australian penal colonies. Among the records is the rise of Parramatta's first Mayor, John Williams.

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