Free Settler or Felon

Hunter Valley Convict and Colonial History


First Name

Surname / Subject


Use the Search Box above to find your Hunter Valley Ancestor.

Sources and Hints and Tips


Free Settler or Felon is an on-going project gathering details of the lives of people who lived in the Hunter Valley, Newcastle and Central Coast in the early days of settlement. Broadly they are classified by their status on arrival - convict or free.

There is information about many of the
Convict Ships arriving in New South Wales, Norfolk Island, Van Diemen s Land and Fremantle between the years 1788 and 1862 and also some information about ships bringing
free settlers and immigrants.

The men who served as
Surgeons on Convict Ships are on separate pages.

Other pages give details of
Coal Miners,
Medical Practitioners,
Military Officers,
Law and Order,
Scourgers and
Placenames in the Hunter Valley.

More about Female Convicts many of whom were sent to the Hunter Valley district can be found

Use the Search Box on the left to find references to people and places in
Maitland and the Hunter Valley. Search by First Name, Surname, Ship or all three.
Resources used to create database and
Hints and Tips.

For more information about Hunter Valley Doctors, Ministers, Soldiers or Police, enter their title in the First Name search field, eg. Rev - Dr- Constable- Major - Captain- Corporal etc.

Other subjects include
Churches and
Mounted Police.

Areas covered include: Maitland, Dungog, Wollombi, Scone, Newcastle, Brisbane Water, Raymond Terrace, Singleton, Muswellbrook, Murrurundi, Merton, Paterson, Lake Macquarie, Lochinvar, Jerry s Plains, Morpeth, Cassilis, Hinton, Clarencetown, Black Creek, Port Stephens, Hexham, Sugar loaf and many more.

Browse the
Links page to find Journals, Diaries and Reminiscences of life in colonial New South Wales or find the latest Australian History News

Voyage Of The First Fleet

Each ship entry on the map above has been compiled from First Fleet Journals. The writers all contribute different perspectives of the voyage depending on their status in life.

The grey weather icons on the Map above are entries from
William Bradley s Journal pinpointing exact locations and the weather recorded on the Sirius. The progress of the Fleet can be followed until 25 November by using these grey icons or the blue Sirius icons.

Magnify the map above by scrolling then click on the ship icons to read Extracts from Journals of the First Fleet. Each ship of the Fleet is represented by a different colour. Enlarge the map by clicking the icon on the top right.

To embed this map in your own website, copy the HTML from the share page and paste it in the source code for your page.

Members of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and Maori communities are advised that this site contains names and images of deceased people.

Site Search


Names from Convict Records

Reminiscences of Paterson - 1840s

James Kerton - Convict

Newcastle Past

A Last Farewell - Anzac Day at Newcastle in 1916

Richard Beacher - Newcastle Harbour Pilot

Port of Newcastle 1856

Convict Ship Captain John James Coombes

Captain Edward Biddulph R.N.,

Fighting Frank Darcy and the Spanish Influenza

H.M. Brig Kangaroo in Australia

George Caley - Botanist

John Macmillan - Convict Ship Surgeon

Cockatoo Island

Log Book of the Minerva Fever Ship in 1838

Cabbage Tree Hats

Hunter Valley Place Names