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Aboriginal deaths in custody in colonial Australia 1805-1860


Harman, K and Maxwell-Stewart, H, Aboriginal deaths in custody in colonial Australia 1805-1860, Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History, 13, (2) pp. 1-20. ISSN 1532-5768 (2012) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

Copyright 2012 Kristyn Harman & Hamish Maxwell-Stewart and The Johns Hopkins University Press

DOI: doi:10.1353/cch.2012.0023


The majority of the 160,000 convicts transported to Australia in the nineteenth century were European, yet a small number of colonial subjects were also incorporated into Britainís Antipodean penal settlements. These included Aboriginal prisoners from the New South Wales frontier. By the 1850s a few Aboriginal convicts were incarcerated at Cockatoo Island,Sydney Harbour, where their comparatively high rate of death attracted administrative attention. This article situates these deaths in custody within the broader history of convict transportation. As well as an analysis of comparative death rates it uses a series of case studies to explore the factors that contributed to the higher death rate experienced by Aboriginal convicts in colonial Australia.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Aboriginal deaths in custody, colonial Australia, convict, prisoner, death rate, Cockatoo Island
Research Division:History, Heritage and Archaeology
Research Group:Historical studies
Research Field:Historical studies not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Understanding past societies
Objective Field:Understanding Australia's past
UTAS Author:Harman, K (Associate Professor Kristyn Harman)
UTAS Author:Maxwell-Stewart, H (Professor Hamish Maxwell-Stewart)
ID Code:79238
Year Published:2012
Deposited By:Riawunna
Deposited On:2012-08-28
Last Modified:2017-12-14
Downloads:19 View Download Statistics

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