Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Convict Ship Georgiana - 1831

Embarked: 182 men
Voyage: 117 days
Deaths: 2
Surgeon's Journal: Yes
Tons: 403
Previous vessel: Camden arrived 25 July 1831
Next vessel: Exmouth arrived 28 July 1831
Captain John Thomson
Surgeon John Tarn

The Georgiana was built in Quebec in 1826. Prisoners were transported to Australia on the Georgiana in 1829 (VDL), 1831 (NSW) and 1832 (VDL). [2]

Military Guard

On 10 March 1831 the guard, a detachment of the 11th Dragoons and 16th regiment, consisting of 3 officers and 29 men, 4 women and 1 child, were embarked at Deptford. Surgeon John Tarn considered them chiefly young healthy recruits.

Convicts Embarked

On the 24 March 1831, 182 convicts from the Leviathan and York hulks were received on to the Georgiana at Portsmouth, having first been examined as to their state of health and capability of performing the voyage to New South Wales. According to the surgeon, the prisoners were generally young men and lads and appeared in a tolerable state of health although not in full vigour in consequence of confinement, scanty diet and other causes.

Cabin Passengers

Cabin Passengers included Captain Clements of 16th regiment; Lieutenant Minter, 45th regiment; Lieutenant Reynolds 11th Light Dragoons; and Assistant-Surgeon Newton.


The Georgiana departed England on 1st April 1831.

Surgeon John Tarn

John Tarn kept a Medical Journal from 4 March to 11 August 1831....

During the detention of the ship at Spithead in the early part of the voyage a good deal of cold damp and changeable weather was experienced occasioning a few catarrhs and pneumonia attacks of moderate severity, and easily manageable. On approaching the warmer latitudes a corresponding increase took place in the temperature of the atmosphere and many of the prisoners complained of lassitude, want of appetite and general debility. During the latter part of the voyage the weather was cool and changeable, often boisterous in consequence of which the prison was at times exceedingly damp for leakage. Catarrhs inflammatory throats and rheumatic attacks were the diseases which then made their appearance but they were few and of little importance. There were two deaths on the voyage - Charles Perkins who died on 9th May 1831 and Dennis McCarthy who died on the 5th June 1831. [1]

The Voyage

The general healthy state of the ship during the voyage may be attributed mainly to the regulation invariably adhered to in fine weather viz, that of having the whole of the convicts on deck during the day. By this means, the prisons became thoroughly ventilated and dried and all accumulation of effluvia was effectually prevented. Great attention was also paid to cleanliness both in the prison and habits of the convicts and dryness was promoted by the frequent use of the stoves provided for that purpose - John Tarn. [1]

Port Jackson

The Georgiana arrived in Sydney on 27 July 1831.

Convicts Disembarked

The prisoners of the Georgiana were landed on Monday 8th August 1831. The Sydney Gazette reported that the men generally appeared robust, able men, and a considerable portion of them were distributed to various applicants in the town.

Notes and Links

1). John Tarn was also employed on the convict ships George Hibbert in 1834, Bengal Merchant in 1836, Surry in 1840 (to Van Diemen's Land) and the Pestonjee Bombanjee to Van Diemen's Land in 1849.

2). Prisoners and passengers of the Georgiana identified in the Hunter Valley region

3). Return of Convicts of the Georgiana assigned between 1st January 1832 and 31st March 1832 (Sydney Gazette 28 June 1832; 5 July 1832).....

Robert Langdon - Gunsmith assigned to James Nicholson at Sydney
James Raeburn - Errand boy assigned to William Hutchinson at Sydney


[1] Journal of John Tarn. UK, Royal Navy Medical Journals, 1817-1857 . The National Archives. Kew, Richmond, Surrey.

[2] Bateson, Charles Library of Australian History (1983). The convict ships, 1787-1868 (Australian ed). Library of Australian History, Sydney : pp.350-351, 387