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Convict Ship Ocean 1818


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Embarked: 182 men

Voyage: 142 days

Deaths: 2

Surgeon's Journal: yes

Tons: 437

Previous vessel: Larkins arrived 22 November 1817

Next vessel: Friendship arrived 4 January 1818

Captain Samuel Remmington.

Surgeon Superintendent George Fairfowl



The Ocean was built at Whitby in 1808. This was her first voyages bringing convicts to New South Wales. Prisoners from counties throughout England were transported on the Ocean.


9 August 1817 - On Wednesday night, between 7 and 8 o'clock, 22 convicts were put into an open wagon in the Old Bailey yard, which soon afterwards drove off on their way to Portsmouth for embarkation to Botany Bay. The early hour attracted a greater crowd than usual outside; and a curious incident occurred. Several persons climbed up, as usual on the outside wall, to take a view of the convicts. One of them was imprudent enough openly to claim acquaintance with one or two of the most hardened; when the officers in attendance, suspecting him to be an old offender, rushed out at the gate, and took him into custody. He was lodged in Newgate with some difficulty. (1)


The prisoners mentioned above may have been destined to embark on the Ocean. The Ocean was built at Whitby in 1808. This was her first voyage bringing convicts to New South Wales. She was the next convict ship to leave England for New South Wales after the departure of the Larkins in July 1817. The Ocean sailed from Spithead on 21st August 1817 and called at St. Helena on 31st October where she remained a week. According to Governor Macquarie's diary, one prisoner was discharged from the ship and sent home from St. Helena.


This was George Fairfowl's first voyage as Surgeon Superintendent of a convict ship. He was later employed on the convict ships Dromedary in 1820, Woodman in 1823, Royal Charlotte in 1825,  Sovereign in 1829, Andromeda in 1830,   Clyde in 1832 and the Hive in 1834.

George Fairfowl kept a Medical Journal which commenced on the 24th June 1817. It is a detailed journal of the particular cases however not as informative as to the conditions on the vessel as his later journals.  His first case was that of free passenger Edmund Shackley who took ill in July after bathing his feet in cold water.


The Ocean arrived at Port Jackson on 10 January 1818 with 180 male prisoners having lost two on the passage....Augustus Golding and William Tarry who both died of consumption. The other prisoners arrived in general good health, though several had been afflicted with inflammation of the lungs which was cured during the voyage.


The Ocean departed Port Jackson for Batavia on 15th February 1818. Surgeon Edward Foord Bromley returned to England on her. Her next voyage to New South Wales with convicts was in 1823.



Notes & Links:


1). Hunter Valley convicts / passengers arriving on the Ocean in 1818


2). Island of St. Helena....







1. The Times [London, England] 9 Aug. 1817: 2. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 11 Mar. 2013.




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