Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Convict Ship Calcutta - 1837

Embarked 340
Voyage 108 days
Deaths 9
Surgeon's Journal - Yes
Previous vessel: Lloyds arrived 17 July 1837
Next vessel: Charles Kerr arrived 9 October 1837
Captain Joseph Brown
Surgeon Anthony Donoghoe
Follow the Irish Convict Ship Trail

Departure from Ireland

The Calcutta departed from Kingstown, Ireland on 17th April 1837 with 340 prisoners bound for New South Wales. The men had been convicted of crimes such as stealing, robbery, perjury, assault, manslaughter, desertion, highway robbery, forgery and riot. Several were convicted of white boy crimes.

Military Guard

The Guard consisted of Lieutenant Scheberras, Ensign Tyrrin and 27 rank and file of 80th regiment. Passengers included six soldier's wives and 10 children. [3]

Cabin Passengers

Cabin passenger Samuel Raymond was the son of Postmaster-General James Raymond and was admitted a Barrister in the Supreme Court soon after arrival. [1]

Anthony Donoghoe

Anthony Donoghoe kept a Medical Journal from 25 March to 4 August 1837....... His first case on 19th April 1837 was that of a soldier of the 80th regiment who had been unwell for 10 or 12 days and was no longer able to do his duty. He had become ill on the journey from Chatham and had been further exposed to the cold in Kingstown harbour when on the open deck of the steam vessel conveying the military guard to the Calcutta. [2]

The Voyage

In the early part of the voyage the prisoners suffered mostly minor ailments, however many had been used to a diet that consisted of potato and from the sudden change on board ship and in conjunction with sea sickness many suffered from obstinate constipation. By mid July, three months into the journey, sixteen of the men were affected by scurvy. [2]

Arrival at Port Jackson

The Calcutta arrived in Port Jackson on the 5 August 1837. The morning of the 5th August was foggy however by midday, the fog had cleared and the rest of the day was clear and cool with winds from the north-west.

Because there had been nine deaths on board, the Calcutta was not permitted on her arrival to come up the Cove, however surgeons were sent on board to confirm that the disease was not contagious and she was soon released from her temporary quarantine.

Convict Muster

The prisoners were mustered on board on Friday 11th August 1837

Notes and Links

1). Find out more about bushrangers Edmond Branigan and Timothy Braddish who arrived on the Calcutta

2). Select here to find out more about bushranger James Shea who arrived on the Calcutta

3). Select here to find out about bushranger John Quigley who arrived on the Calcutta

4). Convicts and passengers of the Calcutta identified in the Hunter Valley

5). Detachments of the 80th regiment arrived the Lady Kennaway, Lloyds, Norfolk, Bengal Merchant, Asia, Captain Cook, Earl Grey, St. Vincent, John, Prince George, Mangles, Heber, Theresa, Calcutta and Eden.

6). Anthony Donoghoe was also surgeon on the convict ships City of Edinburgh in 1832, Parmelia in 1834 and the Hive in 1835

7). Political Prisoners


[1] The Sydney Monitor (NSW : 1828 - 1838) Wed 9 Aug 1837 Page 2 News of the Day.

[2] Journal of Anthony Donoghue on the voyage of the Calcutta in 1837. UK, Royal Navy Medical Journals, 1817-1857. Original data: The National Archives. Kew, Richmond, Surrey.

[3] The Sydney Herald (NSW : 1831 - 1842) Mon 7 Aug 1837 Page 2 Shipping Intelligence.