Official record for William Jones convicted of housebreaking at Hereford Quarter Sessions, 1848. TRANSPORTATION.

Official record for William Jones convicted of housebreaking at Hereford Quarter Sessions, 1848.

Hereford County: 1848.

Wove paper sheet measuring 385 x 240 mm., letterpress with manuscript additions, folded to docket size; a little staining at the top margin, closed tear affecting one margin (now restored) yet good condition overall.

Scarce original English court record documenting the fate of one William Jones, a labourer convicted of housebreaking and sentenced to transportation for ten years. Jones was sent to Van Diemen's Land, one of 290 convicts transported on the Lady Montagu in July 1852. Such conviction records are uncommon.

Scarce original English court record documenting the fate of one William Jones, a labourer convicted of housebreaking and sentenced to transportation for ten years. Jones was sent to Van Diemen's Land, one of 290 convicts transported on the Lady Montagu in July 1852. Such conviction records are uncommon.

Crime rates soared throughout Britain in the 1840s as a direct result of massive demographic changes arising from the industrial revolution. The movement of large numbers of poorly skilled labourers from the countryside into large towns and cities generated unprecedented social stress and poverty. The spike in convictions for pickpocketing, larceny and housebreaking reflects widespread desperation: the case of William Jones as seen in this court record is a typical example of a young labourer convicted for housebreaking. Although no longer a capital sentence reduced to transportation for life, the offence was still a serious one, in this instance resulting in transportation for ten years to 'such place beyond the seas' (being New South Wales or Van Diemen's Land).

Due to the lack of gaols in Britain itself, transportation was the primary mode of punishment during the 1840s. The enormous influx of felons into the Australian colonies caused unprecedented problems; the end result of which was the abolition of transportation to eastern Australia in the early 1850s.

Price (AUD): $400.00

US$311.05   Other currencies

Ref: #4107384