[Episode 21 | 1808 : Sarah]
Sarah is punished after she introduces herself to some local Aboriginal people. After she accidentally breaks a plate while doing the dishes, Alice blackmails Sarah into taking her outside.
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What punishment could be used to deter convicts who had already been transported to the colony from committing further misdemeanours? Convicts who perpetrated crimes in the colony could be flogged, but floggings were not as arbitrarily meted out as is popularly thought. In My Place Episode 21 │ 1808: Sarah, Mrs Owen and her daughter Alice often threaten Sarah with being sent back to Sydney Town if she is disobedient or does something wrong. If assigned convicts like Sarah committed crimes or tried to run away, they could be returned to government control and would probably then be put to work in leg-irons as part of a road gang or sent to a penal colony such as those at Newcastle or Port Macquarie. The worst cases were sent to Norfolk Island settlement.
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Note to teachers: these activities may not be suitable for younger primary students due to the graphic nature of the content being discussed. Please use your discretion.
Student Activity Sheet H21.3 Punishment for convicts
The Parramatta Female Factory, a 'special gaol for women and girls', was established in 1821. It replaced Australia's first female factory, the 'factory above the gaol', which was also located in Parramatta, and it was designed to accommodate up to 300 women, combining elements of a prison, a factory and a workhouse. During its history, the precinct of the Parramatta Female Factory has accommodated an asylum, an orphanage, a girls' home and a women's prison. The precinct is located in present day Fleet Street, Parramatta, NSW, and a campaign has been launched to list the area as a National Heritage site.
Student Activity Sheet H21.4: The Parramatta Female Factory