The full content of this document is only available to subscribing institutions. More information can be found via

Title Journal of the Merchantman Convict Ship
Author Smith, Dr William
Date 10 Oct 1862 - 24 Feb 1863
Document Type Shipping Papers
Reference MT 32/5
Library / Archive The National Archives
Collection Name Admiralty Transport Department, Surgeon Superintendents' Journals of Convict Ships
Description Journal written by the Surgeon Superintendent detailing the daily life on board. Most of the focus of the earlier part is on the weather. The ship has prison cells fitted whilst docked in Ireland. Includes a list of the convicts brought on board at Bermuda, their sentence, date of conviction, religion and conduct whilst on board. Dr Smith relates the infractions caused by the convicts, their punishment, births and deaths on board and includes his thoughts on how convict ships should be conducted in future, most notably his disapproval of women on board ship. Also includes lists of wives and families of the pensioner guards, warders and pensioner guards, where and when they embarked and their conduct whilst on board.
Series Description This series consists of journals of Surgeon Superintendents in charge of convicts, containing rules and regulations, lists of names, details of diet and medical reports.
Theme(s) Departures: Port Conditions and Organisation; Journey Conditions
Country (from) Great Britain
Country (to) Bermuda; Australia
Places Downs, Beachy Head, England; Swan River, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Ports Gravesend, England; St George's Harbour, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Ships Merchantman; HMS Galatea; HMS Vesuvius
Keywords surgeon, transportation, convict, shipping, regulations, provisions, women, children, alcohol, food, health and sickness, disease, death, birth, religion, Protestantism, stowaway, dysentery, punishment box, passenger, sanitation, forced migration
Language English
Document(s) linked to Journal of the Merchantman Convict Ship
Copyright Crown Copyright documents © are reproduced by permission of The National Archives London, UK