- This cartoon was published in Punch magazine in 1864. Punch was a
popular journal, which was famous for its cartoons. These cartoons often
dealt with serious issues, but tried to comment in a lighthearted way.
- At the time of this cartoon transportation to Australia from Britain
was already over. A number of factors brought this about.
- There was a strong campaign in Britain against transportation, on
the grounds that it was immoral and because conditions on the convict
ships were appalling.
- There were also many complaints from settlers in Australia. Many believed
that ex-convicts were responsible for the crime and squalor that affected
some Australian towns.
- Other settlers believed that the presence of convict workers meant
that there were fewer jobs for free workers, and that their wages were
low as a result.
- Other critics believed that there was no need for convict labour because
enough immigrants were coming in to seek their fortune in the gold mines.
- All of these pressures meant that transportation ended in the
1850s. However, the British government still moved convicts around Australia
until the 1860s.