The University of Sheffield
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Western Australia Character Books, 1850-57 (London convicts)

posted on 2018-03-13, 16:54 authored by Sharon HowardSharon Howard

Western Australian Character Books contain a record of each convict prisoner as they entered the convict establishment at Fremantle. The books were intended to keep a record of the personal details, physical descriptions, and conviction histories of each new arrival, along with information regarding their character prior to and during sentence.

The dataset contains records of 358 convicts who were tried in London. The information given includes the name and register number of each convict, the date they arrived in the colony and the prison from which they came, as well as a convict’s age, trade, marital status, and literacy levels. The books also record details of the crime for which a convict was transported, as well as any known previous convictions.


Arts and Humanities Research Council



  • There is no personal data or any that requires ethical approval


  • The data complies with the institution and funders' policies on access and sharing

Sharing and access restrictions

  • The data can be shared openly

Data description

  • The file formats are open or commonly used

Methodology, headings and units

  • There is a readme.txt file describing the methodology, headings and units