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Convict Ship Bardaster 1836


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A B C D E F G H I
                 
J -K L M N - O P - Q R S T - V W - Y



Embarked 240 men
Voyage 119 days
Deaths 5
Surgeon's Journal - Yes
Captain Alexander McDonald
Surgeon Superintendent
Joseph Steret
 
The Bardaster departed Portsmouth bound for Van Diemen's Land on 16 September 1835.

Joseph Steret kept a Medical Journal from 12 August 1835 to 18 January 1836. The Guard ordered for the Bardaster consisting of thirty non-commissioned Officers and privates of the 28th regiment and two commissioned officers, embarked on the vessel on 22nd August 1835.

According to the surgeon they were accompanied by an unusually large proportion of women and children. There being nine of the former, and the same number of the latter, mostly infants under sixteen months. On the evening of their embarkation one of the soldiers of the Guard was taken ill with cholera and for the greater part of the night his life was despaired of.........

..........We moved from Deptford to Portsmouth where we were ordered to embark our prisoners; on the 25th August we anchored at Gravesend. On the 29th we weighed anchor and proceeded down the river. On 1st September, I examined at the hulks Leviathan and York, two hundred and forty male convicts who were embarked the same day. They were in general healthy but four or five were found to have disease of the lungs. Our sailing orders did not arrive till Wednesday the 10th when the wind had lifted to the SW where it continued blowing a gale till the 16th. On that day it moderated and we weighed anchor. At night it again blew hard and continued to do so till the 21st September. We cleared the Channel on the 23rd notwithstanding the unfavourable weather, but variola had by this time established itself on board.

The surgeon isolated those affected in the forecastle and took such precautions as the overcrowded ship would allow. The weather continued very boisterous and almost all the prisoners were sea sick. On 21st a prisoner boy was carried into the hospital. He had been constantly sea sick since sailing from Portsmouth and had not been vaccinated from small pox. The surgeon now had three cases of small pox to deal with. He made the hospital a 'pest ward' and the sick were visited in the prison. ...........

In the severe and confluent disease it is impossible to convey by writing any notion of the loathsome mass of suppuration and putrescence which the patients became. The treatment consisted in moderating the fever by bloodletting, purgatives and by keeping their body naked and by applying clothes dipped in water. But I do not think I succeeded in preventing the formation of a single pimple in all, the face and extremities were literally covered and the body nearly so. The secondary fever very severe.

There was not room enough in the hospital to accommodate all who became ill and so those who had been inoculated and had only a modified form of the disease were isolated on one side of the deck during the day. As well as small pox there were also consumptive cases and a case of apoplexy which proved fatal. There were six deaths altogether on the voyage, one of them being a seaman who was affected with small pox.
The Bardaster arrived in Van Diemen's Land on 13 January 1836, after a voyage of 119 days.  

Arrival of the convict ship Bardaster in VDL in 1836

Notes & Links:

1). Joseph Steret was also surgeon on the convict ships Camden in 1833 and the Neptune in 1838 (VDL).

2). James Creasley arrived on the Bardaster, later resided at Maitland NSW

3). Convict ships bringing detachments of the 28th regiment included the Recovery, Charles Kerr, Westmoreland, Marquis of Huntley Norfolk, Backwell, England, John Barry, Susan, Waterloo, Moffatt, Strathfieldsaye,  Portsea. William Jardine, Lady McNaughten and the Bardaster (VDL).  

4). Founders & Survivors - Bardaster convicts

5). Wood's Royal Southern lendar, Tasmanian Register and Almanac, By James Wood.....









         







 

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