Skip links and keyboard navigation

Skip to primary navigation | Skip to secondary navigation | Skip to content | Skip to content | Skip to footer | Use tab and cursor keys to move around the page (more information)
Skip Navigation LinksQueensland State Archives > Researching the archives > Indexes > Convicts / prisoners > St Helena prisoners 1863-1936

St Helena prisoners 1863-1936

Search the indexes

Please note, Adobe Reader is required to open and print these Portable Document Format (PDF) index files and is free to download from the Adobe website. If you have difficulty accessing PDF files from this website please contact us.

Explanatory notes

  • ? indicates there is doubt about the entry due to difficulty in interpreting handwriting
  • Check all possible spelling variants
  • Check all SEE ALSO references
  • All given names are abbreviated as initials as they appear in the original record
  • Mc and Mac names are interfiled
  • O names are not indexed with an apostrophe, e.g. O DWYER
  • Asiatic names have not been anglicised and appear as recorded in the original record
  • Some prison numbers have been obscured due to damage of the paper. Where possible these have been recorded in the index with dots to indicate the missing numbers with a question mark, e.g.: ...91 ?
  • Some prisoners have not been given a prison number and this field has been left blank
  • In Series ID 7299 part way through 1921, the numbering begins at 1. Only some pages have been numbered from 1-243 from 1934 onwards.

Costs and ordering

The cost for each page reference required is A$6.60.

To order copies of an item, please complete an index order form (PDF, 67KB). When completing the form, quote the name of the person, page number and reference number/s, QSA Reference and the microfilm number where relevant.

If you require further information, please contact us.

Background

These indexes record the names of all prisoners who were held at St Helena Penal Establishment. The records were created in part by the Police Department, Water Police 1863-1867 and, HM Penal Establishment, St Helena 1867-1886, and the Brisbane Correctional Centre 1917-1936.

Each series has been individually indexed under its series title.

1. Series ID 7299 General record and description of prisoners admitted to St Helena, 1917-1923

Details for each prisoner recorded in the register include: name and number, offence, sentencing, remission, remanded or committed for trial, previous convictions, trade or calling, and physical characteristics.

This register (Item ID 271421; A/18565) appears to have been written at HM Prison, Brisbane, and may have been a central record for the disposal of prisoners throughout Queensland. This particular section refers to those admitted to St Helena. Although the register generally records those prisoners admitted from 1917 onwards, prisoners who were already at St Helena in 1917 are also recorded, together with their date of admission.

2. Series ID 7300 Register of Male Prisoners Admitted to St Helena (with descriptions) - sentences 12 months and upwards, 1919-1924

This register (Item ID 271422; A/18565) records details of male prisoners serving sentences of twelve months and upwards at HM Penal Establishment, St Helena, kept by HM Prison, Brisbane (Boggo Road).

Details for each prisoner recorded in the register include: name and number, offence, sentencing, remission, remanded or committed for trial, previous convictions, trade or calling, and physical characteristics.

There are also some single entries which appear after the main series, listed one entry per page and appear to be related, in that the sentences are of twelve months or more. These dates represent dates of first admission only. In some cases, where a prisoner has been readmitted at a later date, the details are also recorded.

3. Series ID 10832, Registers of Male Prisoners Admitted (with Descriptions), 1934-1936

Details for each prisoner recorded in this register (Item ID 341020; A/18565) include: name and number, admission, sentence, discharge, previous convictions, place of birth, trade, religion, age, physical characteristics and how and when disposed of.

4. Series ID 15403 General Record and Description of Prisoners - (Males), 1879-1907

Queensland prisons kept records of prisoners' admissions, criminal history and physical descriptions, either separately or combined in the same register. This series consists of registers of general record and descriptions of male prisoners admitted to HM Penal Establishment, St Helena.

Information provided includes: name, offence, where and when tried, sentencing, admission, discharge, arrival in colony, trade, religion, age, physical characteristics, and weight on admission and discharge.

This series includes a section with details of offences committed while in prison (date, offence, punishment, discharge). In some cases, there is also a photograph number, and a prisoner number.

Note: The first general record and description of prisoners at St Helena was taken c1892, registering first all prisoners whom had been there since 1879 and continuing thereon (which is the reason for numerous prisoner number gaps at the beginning of the register).

5. Series ID 15398 Register of Male Prisoners Admitted, 1863-1886

Queensland prisons kept records of prisoners' admissions, criminal history and physical descriptions, either separately or combined in the same register.

This series consists of Item ID 92280 (PRI2/9) and Item ID 92279 (PRI2/9): A register of male prisoners admitted to the hulk "Proserpine" between 1863 and 1867 (pp. 1-13). The hulk "Proserpine" was under the management of the Water Police, and was used to house prisoners due to overcrowding in Brisbane gaol. After the opening of the penal establishment at St Helena Island, Moreton Bay, in May 1867, all remaining prisoners of the Proserpine were taken to the new prison, and this register was continued there under the new heading "HM Penal Establishment, St Helena" (pp. 13-152). Information recorded includes: year, prisoner number, name, condition, purpose ("imprisonment"), date of warrant, date received in hulk, date of discharge, committed by whom, committed where, offence and remarks. A column was added in 1869 to note the period of sentence.

Item ID 92272 (PRI2/2): Around 1883 the list of St Helena prisoners was transcribed to a new volume, where prisoner numbers were started afresh at No. 1.

The image (click for a larger image) below depicts the first double opening page of the register dated 15 June 1864 from Item 92272 (PRI2/2).

 Opening pages of St Helena prisoner registerOpening pages of St Helena prisoner register

Related records

At the same time in 1883 a parallel volume was started to record the physical description of the same prisoners. This register has not been indexed.

  • Series ID 18770 (PRI2/3), Register of the physical descriptions of male prisoners at HM Penal Establishment, St. Helena, 1867-1886.
  • See also Series ID 5653, Chronological Register of Convicts at Moreton Bay, 1824-1839.


Last updated 21 June 2016
General record and description of Julian Alexander Salmon STUART, 19 November 1893

Queensland State Archives, Digital Image ID 16583, General record and description of Julian Alexander Salmon STUART, 19 November 1893 ​

 

 

 Indexes available under Open Data initiative

 
​The index to St Helena prisoners 1863 to 1936 is also available through the Queensland Government’s Open Data initiative. The Open Data index is in .csv format.