While our focus is often on the prison era of the St Helena Penal Establishment from 1867, the previous 15 years saw St Helena Island used as a quarantine site. Moreton Bay settlement was opened up to free immigrants in 1842 and in doing so it became exposed to outbreaks of disease the immigrants brought with them on the ships. The story of these immigrant … Continue reading New arrivals, new stories and old mysteries in 1852
Brand new research has come to light for St Helena Island! Our discovery has realised that there was a prisoner in St Helena Penal Establishment who was also a convict transported in 1840. Continue reading St Helena Island is NOT a place for convicts… until now.
Is data your thing? Or stories? For me it’s always the story, which is why it’s so amazing that this whole blog post is going to be about data and databases. And I’m going to be seriously enthusiastic about them because we’ve never had digitised data relating to St Helena Penal Establishment in any format that is searchable. And now The St Helena Island Community … Continue reading Is data your thing?
It’s a numbers game. My last post focussing on the importance of the 14th September 1921 showed how 30 prisoners were transferred on that one day to Brisbane Prison. Our new research shows that the same fate befell the warders, with 12 warders also leaving on the same day. In fact, by the 14th September 1921, St Helena Penal Establishment staff had been reduced from … Continue reading One day in September on St Helena Island -Warders
In prison 1st January 1921- 158 prisoners.Received through the year 117. Discharged through the year 186 In prison 31st December 1921 – 89 prisoners. Prisons Department Report – Year ended 31st December 1921 In 1921, The Home secretary, Mr McCormack controlled prisons. Major discussions had been ongoing for years regarding the best way to administer and manage prisoners in Queensland. The final decisions, outlined in … Continue reading ONE DAY IN SEPTEMBER ON ST HELENA ISLAND
I think history is like a large jigsaw puzzle – the 5,000 small piece kind. In the box, the puzzle is a jumble of indistinct colours and shapes and there is no clarity. Yet, when you begin to join some pieces together, a picture starts to emerge, and the more pieces that you are able to join together, the clearer the picture is. When researching … Continue reading History is like a box of jigsaw pieces
The turquoise waters and white rock faces of Walkerville are reminiscent of the Aegean Sea surrounding the Greek Isles. But standing in the southerly most point of Victoria, Australia, we’re 15 000 kms and a hemisphere away from the warm lazy waters of the ancient land of Greece. In Walkerville, the story of the landscape is written in limestone and the remnants of that story … Continue reading Landscapes shaped by lime
The St Helena Community is slowly piecing together the historical record of families who lived on the island during the time of the Penal Establishment. Today we meet the Aebli family. Continue reading More women for St Helena Island – the arrival of the Aeblis
It IS true that Johnny Lennon was punished for singing in his cell. But this story happened in the prison on St Helena Island in Australia. Read more and see the news article written about his story. Continue reading Johnny Lennon… locked up for singing in his Saint Helena cell
100 years ago, Frederick McMunn became the 13th St Helena Penal Establishment prison warder to die whilst employed on the island. Though he lived on St Helena Island at the time of his death on the 21st October 1920, he died in hospital in Brisbane. (1) Frederick was a prisoner warder, a miner, a bachelor and a unionist. He was also brother and brother-in-law to … Continue reading All in the family – siblings on St Helena