The Female Convicts Research Centre promotes interest in the female convicts of Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania), by encouraging and facilitating research.

From 1803 to 1853, 13,500 female convicts were transported to Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania), as punishment for crimes, mainly theft. After serving their sentences they were released into the community. Their transportation left a lasting legacy.

The Female Convicts Research Centre encourages research into these female convicts, mainly through its database, website and  seminars.

When you register with the FCRC, you gain access to our database where you will find information entered by our volunteers as we attempt to reconstruct the life course of each female convict.

We update this website and our database regularly and sometimes daily, as our volunteer transcribers continue to provide new information.  Please bookmark this page and return soon.




Search the Female Convicts in Van Diemen's Land Database

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Convict System Administration

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Convict Lives


Latest News:

Latest Publication from Convict Women's Press

Convict Lives: Female Convicts at the New Norfolk Asylum

The latest publication from Convict Women's Press Inc was launched on the 1st May 2021, by Her Excellency Professor the Honourable Kate Warner, AC, Governor of Tasmania.

The sixth publication in the series of Convict Lives in Van Diemen’s Land has been edited by Dianne Snowden and Jane Harrington.

Initially opening as an invalid hospital in 1829 at New Norfolk, the hospital was shortly renamed the New Norfolk Asylum for the Insane. It housed both convict and free men and women, and its inmates included hundreds of convict women.

Recounting the lives of 15 women using archival material and family records, the book’s 22 authors reconstruct the lives of individual convict women, the reasons for their admission and their treatment in the Asylum.

The stories highlight there is much more to the life of a convict than a crime, trial and sentence. Seven of the authors are descendants of these women and share family stories of fractured and fragmented lives.

Copies of the book can be bought from selected book stores or online through the CWP website at https://www.convictwomenspress.com.au

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Newly Digitised Items at Tasmanian Archives

Newly digitised updates from the Tasmanian Archives and State Library heritage collections are now available via their blog.  Items featured on the blog are also available to view via their Newly Digitised Items webpage, this will be trialled for the next 3-6 months to find out which format works best.


Tasmanian Archives welcome any feedback you might have, helping to preserve and provide access to these wonderful collections.


Digitisation Services
Government Archives & Preservation Collections | Libraries Tasmania

91 Murray Street | Hobart | Tasmania | 7000

Ph (03) 6165 5587 www.libraries.tas.gov.au



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Save The Date:

2022 to be advised
FCRC's 2022 Seminar:  Topic will be Female Convict Youths.


Whats new?

Recent Updates



Convict Ships:

Ships - Frances Charlotte 1833 -  Transcript of Surgeons Journal (Transcribed by Colleen Arulappu 1/03/2021). There was cholera aboard the Frances Charlotte and the cases began after the prisoners, free government persons and crew, embarked at Woolwich.  The brief notes on each patient show the sudden and violent onslaught of the disease and the rapid decline of the eight people who died. In the General Remarks the surgeons wrote that the use of calomel to treat cholera failed. He also described the measures taken to prevent spread of the disease in the hospital.

Other Updates:

Image Gallery - Anastatia Kenny per Martin Luther, Jane Campbell per Waverley,  Isabella McCall per Martin Luther, source PROV. https://vagrantsandmurderesses.com (8/04/2021)

Punishments - Penal Servitude (7/05/2021), Indulgences Revoked (3/04/2021).





Please acknowledge our work, should you choose to use our research.  Our work may be subject to copyright therefore please check our Copyright Policy, and Disclaimer policy.

For academic referencing (suggestion only) Database: [http address], FCRC Female Convicts in Van Diemen’s Land database, entry for xxxx ID no xxx, accessed [date].

For academic referencing (suggestion only) Website:  Female Convicts Research Centre Inc., accessed [date] from [http address].