Between 1787 and 1868, 162,000 people packed into 806 ships were transported to the colony of Australia. This is the story of an extraordinary period in British criminal history, brought to life through unique surviving records held by the UK National Archives. For over two hundred years, tens of thousands of convicts were sentenced to be 'banished beyond the seas', mostly to Australia and to destinations which became the stuff of legend - Botany Bay, Van Diemen's Land, Norfolk Island. This book follows their epic voyages across the world's oceans, recapturing the perils and unexpected pleasures of life at sea in fresh and fascinating detail.
Contents: The beginning of transportation -- The first three fleets -- The trauma of exile -- Who were the convicts? -- Child convicts -- Keeping order -- Staying alive on the convict ships -- The surgeon's tale -- The promised land -- Towards the end of transportation.
Illustrations on endpapers. Includes bibliographical references and index.