Perry McIntyre, ‘Free Passage: Convict Family Reunion in Australia 1788-1852’

Free Passage tells the story of convict men and their wives who petitioned the government to enable women and their families to immigrate to Australia. These convict men and their families worked the system set up by government to encourage family life in the developing settlements. This book traces the complex and changing regulations governing convict family reunion, showing how personal negotiation influenced the outcome. It also examines the individual experiences of convict men and the families left behind when their menfolk were transported. Petitions from wives in England and Ireland are examined and for the first time these women become key players in the story of immigration, which is linked to transportation and convict reformation.

Dr Perry McIntyre is an historian based in Sydney who has worked on nineteenth century emigration for many years.



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