It would be interesting to know how many convicts transported to Australia had any geographic knowledge of where they had been sent. Perhaps most would have had limited or no idea at all, except that the long sea voyage made it apparent that they were far from their homeland.
The belief that some convicts accepted about China being within reasonable reach of the penal settlement was therefore not as delusional as it may have seemed. The convicts travelled a large part of the journey to Australia below deck. This would surely have reduced their sense of distance and direction. Maps of the ‘great south land’ were rudimentary and in some cases based on conjecture.Continue reading “No Place For John Place”