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The Fearsome Prison Ships of the Former British Empire

known as prison ships or “prison hulks”, these decomissioned vessels were used by britain during the 18th and 19th centuries to house prisoners of war...

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May 13, 1787. The First Fleet leaves for Australia. 11 ships left England for Australia, to establish the penal colony that would later become Sydney. 1487 people were on the ships, including 778 convicts. It was one of the most ambitious sea voyages attempted up to then -- it took 252 days to get there, on a round-about voyage going through Tenerife and Rio de Janeiro. 48 people died en route -- a death toll of only about 3%.

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Australia or jail - which was worse?

Australia or jail - which was worse? British criminals convicted at the Old Bailey in the 18th and 19th Centuries were either jailed, transported to Australia or hanged.

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Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney, NSW, Australia - art deco poster

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Martin Senn. Franz Kafka: Der Eigentümliche Apparataus der Erzählung “In der Strafkolonie.” [Franz Kafka: The Peculiar Apparatus from the Story “In the Penal Colony.”] Wire and modeling clay. 50cm x 35cm x 25cm.

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Caged convicts on a ship bound for Australia. The average journey time to the penal colony was 102 days

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The abandoned prison complex on Isle St. Joseph, French Guiana. Remembered as one of the most infamous and deadly prisons in the world, located in French Guiana.

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Irish Convicts Transported to Australia from Dublin

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