Many female convicts died while under sentence.  For many of these convicts, inquests were held. Convicts burials were sometimes recorded in the local church burial records.


Inquests were sometimes held for the women who died under sentence, and these were often reported in the local newspapers. On 4 February 1843 (p.2 c.3), the Cornwall Chronicle reported on the inquest of Ann Thompson who died in the hospital at Launceston Female Factory. This was possibly the Ann Thompson who was transported on the Hindostan.

CORONER'S INQUEST.—An inquest was held at the Court House, on Wednesday afternoon, upon the body of Ann Thompson, who died at the Female Factory, on Tuesday morning. The nurse at the hospital in the Female Factory, deposed that the deceased had been a patient there for a fortnight; and had been complaining of her head for some time; she was seen by Drs. Benson and Maddox, once or twice every day whilst there; a blister was applied to the back of her head on Monday; she was restless during the night, and at daylight became more quiet; a change suddenly came over her, and she expired in presence of witness. Dr. Maddox stated, that the death of deceased was occasioned by a cancer in the brain. Verdict—"Died by the visitation of God."

The Cornwall Chronicle of 13 May 1843 (p.2 c.5) reported on the inquest of Jane Stewart transported on the Emma Eugenia in 1842 who also died at the Launceston Female Factory.

CORONER'S INQUEST.—An inquest was held at the Court House on Monday last, before P. A. Mulgrave, Esq., on the body of Jane Stewart, who died in the female house of correction on the Friday previous. It appeared from the evidence, that the deceased had been taken in labour on Friday, and the case being one of difficulty, had been attended by Drs. Benson and Maddox, as also by Mr. Corbould. Notwithstanding every attention paid by the medical gentlemen, she expired in a few hours of extensive hemorrhage. After a patient investigation, the jury returned a verdict of "Died by the Visitation of God."

Many women at this time died during or immediately after childbirth. Female convicts were returned from service to the local female factory to await confinement.

See also the inquest of Ellen Parker (Sea Queen).


The Cascades Female Factory Cemetery was located on a rectangular plot on the corner of what is now Mcrobies Road and Syme Street, South Hobart, near the north-east corner of the main ruins of the Female Factory.  It was used for burials from the 1820’s until 1876.  An early map has the graveyard outlined: Archives Tasmania PWD266-1-382

The cemetery is a pretty little green patch of three quarters of an acre, and we may remark for the information of the curious that it has no de-nominational sub-divisions. Prisoners, paupers, and juvenile offenders, of all creeds, find a last resting place in the same spot, and a few of the graves are marked with neat little crosses and head boards erected by the friends or relations of those buried there. The superintendent, Mr Atkins, is doing his best to make the cemetery a pretty place, and he is succeeding very well. (The Mercury, Wednesday 1 January 1873 - Page 3)

The burials of Protestant convicts who died under sentence in or near Hobart were recorded in the burial records of St David's Anglican Church up until the beginning of 1844. Both before and after this time, burials were recorded in the burial records of the Trinity Anglican Church, Hobart, though there was a break between mid-1845 and the beginning of 1848. There was a convict burial ground at Trinity Cemetery, which was located where Campbell Street Primary School now stands.

The burials of Protestant convicts who died under sentence in or near Launceston were recorded in the burial records of St John's Anglican Church up until mid-1845.



Further Resources:

Tombstone and Memorial Inscriptions of Tasmania (TAMIOT) 2nd Edition June 1999, A CD-ROM available for purchase from

Cemetary Records online:

A guide to Hobart's historic cemeteries and burial grounds by Kathery Bennett:







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

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