This database contains convict pardons and tickets of leave from New South Wales and Tasmania, Australia from 1834-1859.
Pardons were generally given to convicts with life sentences and shortened the sentence by granting freedom. There were two types of pardons – conditional and absolute. Conditional pardons required that freed convicts remain in the colony. Absolute pardons allowed freed convicts to return to the U.K.
Tickets of leave allowed convicts to live and work for their own wages wherever they wanted to within a certain Police District. Tickets of leave were generally given to convicts with good behavior. Convicts became eligible for a ticket after a certain amount of their sentence had been served. Generally a convict became eligible after 4 years for a seven year sentence, after 6 years for a fourteen year sentence, and after 8 years for a life sentence. Once a year the convict had to report in at the ticket of leave muster or else the ticket was revoked.
Pardons and tickets of leave contain similar information. Some of the information you can find on these records includes:
- Convict’s name
- Ship of arrival
- Date of arrival
- Trade or occupation
- Trial/conviction place
- Trial/conviction date
- Physical description
- District to which confined
Some of the above information may only be obtained by viewing the image of the original record.
Having Trouble Finding a Passenger?
Given the nature of record keeping in England during the period covered by this collection, convict passenger lists for certain ships do not appear within this collection. Ancestry is currently sourcing the missing material from local archives. Should you be unable to find reference to a particular convict in this collection, please search within the related data collections listed on this page as individual convict records will in most cases exist elsewhere in this collection.