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Convict Ship James Pattison 1837 


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(Convicts and passengers from this ship only)

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Select from the Links below to find information about Convict Ships arriving in New South Wales, Norfolk Island and Van Diemen's Land between the years 1788 and 1850.

J -K L M N - O P - Q R S T - V W - Y

Embarked: 270 men
Voyage: 101 days
Deaths: 0
Surgeon's Journal: Yes
Previous vessel: Charles Kerr arrived 9 October 1837
Next vessel: Asia arrived 2 December 1837
Captain James Cromarty
Surgeon Superintendent Thomas Robertson
The James Pattison was built in London in 1828. Prisoners were transported to New South Wales on the James Pattison in 1830 and on this voyage in 1837.

Two hundred and seventy male convicts were embarked at Woolwich and Sheerness, all in good health. They came from counties throughout England and Scotland and had been convicted of crimes such as stealing, robbery, assault, highway robbery, cutting and maiming, machine breaking, setting fire to straw, kidnapping and forgery.

The Guard embarked on the 27th June and included Lieut. Bridge of 3rd regt., Ensign Best, 80th regiment, and 28 rank and file of the 28th, 4th , 50th and 80th regiments, 4 women and 6 children.

Thomas Robertson kept a Medical Journal from 17 June to 2 November 1837........ The James Pattison departed from Portsmouth on 16th July 1837 and the prisoners continued to be healthy during the passage, the total on the sick list was only 42. Catarrhs were the most numerous illness, occurring between the Cape of Good Hope and Bass's Straits where the weather was cold and wet.

Prisoners were kept on deck from 8am until sunset, weather permitting. They were mustered and examined daily and bathed every day in the tropics. Schools were formed and dancing held in the evening. Irons were removed at the start of the voyage with the dread of putting them on again ensuring good behaviour. Meals were served regularly at set times and the health of the prisoners can be attributed to the improved mode of victualling. Between decks was kept clean, dry and ventilated by windsails.

The James Pattison arrived in Port Jackson on 25 October 1837 after a voyage of 101 days. It was reported that she had made the extraordinary run of ninety-seven degrees in twenty one days, the quickest sailing ever heard of. The convicts all arrived in a very healthy state, not one having died on the voyage out.

Prisoners were usually housed in Hyde Park Barracks until they were assigned as servants.   In 1837 Governor Sir Richard Bourke gave evidence before the Select Committee on transportation and was questioned on the conditions at the Barracks.....

Notes & Links:

1). Thomas Robertson was also employed as surgeon on the convict ships William Bryan in 1833 (VDL), Forth in 1835, Surry in 1836 and the Planter in 1839.

2). The James Pattison was engaged to bring immigrants to Australia in 1839. After she departed Sydney she was used to carry a cargo of cotton from Bombay and was lost to fire in September 1840....... She had sailed from Bombay on 27th June 1840 and on the 29th September at 1pm off the Western Island, smoke was seen issuing up the fore hatchway, and it was found that the cargo was on fire. Every exertion and every well devised means were in immediate operation, when by the mercy of Providence, and just at that critical moment when her worthy commander and his crew were about to commit themselves to further peril in leaky boats, a sail was discovered, and at that very time the flames had reached her rigging and masts. In that awful condition the James Pattison in a blaze, bore up towards the welcome stranger, and about 24 hours after the fire was discovered all her crew were taken on board the Norval from St. John and safely landed at Lisbon. - Nautical Magazine.

3). Hunter Valley convicts and passengers arriving on the James Pattison in 1837



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