VDL Bushrangers

Bushranging began in Tasmania in the early years of settlement (then called Van Diemen's Land), when near starvation meant convicts were sent into the bush to hunt. Some remained there, living by stealing from or trading with settlers. Their numbers grew as more convicts escaped, and until the 1850s there were many bushrangers. Attempts made to suppress them included a proclamation in May 1814 promising a pardon if they came in.
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Van Diemen's Land, Hobart Town. Ten Shillings, Value received. August v@e

Alexander Pearce (1790 - 1824) was a convict and bushranger who escaped from the Macquarie Harbour Penal Settlement and is best known for cannabalising his fellow escapees while travelling through the Tasmanian Wilderness. The Hobart Town Gazette wrote on 25 June 1824, he did not seem to be someone who was "laden with the weight of human blood, and believed to have banqueted on human flesh" but human remains were found in his pockets during his final capture, confirming his dietary…

Alexander Pearce (1790 - 1824) was a convict and bushranger who escaped from the Macquarie Harbour Penal Settlement and is best known for cannabalising his fellow escapees while travelling through the Tasmanian Wilderness. The Hobart Town Gazette wrote on 25 June 1824, he did not seem to be someone who was "laden with the weight of human blood, and believed to have banqueted on human flesh" but human remains were found in his pockets during his final capture, confirming his dietary…

Thomas Jeffries Tasmanian bushranger, serial killer and cannibal. Hanged in 1826. See  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Jeffries for the full story.

Thomas Jeffries Tasmanian bushranger, serial killer and cannibal. Hanged in 1826. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Jeffries for the full story.

Reward! : Fifty sovereigns, and a conditional pardon. Whereas the three convicts (runaways from Port Arthur) Martin Cash, George Jones, and Lawrence Kavenagh ... 19th January, 1843. From the collections of the Dixson Library, State Library of New South Wales: http://library.sl.nsw.gov.au/record=b1709253

Reward! : Fifty sovereigns, and a conditional pardon. Whereas the three convicts (runaways from Port Arthur) Martin Cash, George Jones, and Lawrence Kavenagh ... 19th January, 1843. From the collections of the Dixson Library, State Library of New South Wales: http://library.sl.nsw.gov.au/record=b1709253

The skull of Alexander Pearce, Van Diemen's Land convict, cannibal and bushranger, which is held in the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

The skull of Alexander Pearce, Van Diemen's Land convict, cannibal and bushranger, which is held in the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

In lawless Van Diemen’s Land, Michael Howe, leader of a wild banditti, roams with impunity. Howe is a killer who keeps a ‘dream diary’ written in blood on dried animal skins. At one point Howe’s banditti is so powerful he taunts Lieutenant-Governor Davey and declares himself ‘Governor of The Ranges’.

In lawless Van Diemen’s Land, Michael Howe, leader of a wild banditti, roams with impunity. Howe is a killer who keeps a ‘dream diary’ written in blood on dried animal skins. At one point Howe’s banditti is so powerful he taunts Lieutenant-Governor Davey and declares himself ‘Governor of The Ranges’.

The old Bank of Tasmania that was robbed of cash and gold worth around $2,700 in 1884, it is now an Art Gallery and Souvenir store.

The old Bank of Tasmania that was robbed of cash and gold worth around $2,700 in 1884, it is now an Art Gallery and Souvenir store.

Bushranging in Tasmania

Bushranging in Tasmania

Martin Cash (1808-1877), ca.1830s?  from Thomas Bock's album of 'Sketches of Tasmanian Bushrangers, ca.1823-1843', State Library of NSW

Martin Cash (1808-1877), ca.1830s? from Thomas Bock's album of 'Sketches of Tasmanian Bushrangers, ca.1823-1843', State Library of NSW

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