Port Arthur Penitentiary

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Port Arthur: One of the harshest prisons of Van Diemen’s Land.

In January 2015, I was blessed with the opportunity to make my way further down South, all the way to the beautiful state of Tasmania. Formerly known as Van Diemen’s Land, Tasmania is well-known for being a place with its foundations built by convicts of the British Empire. When the American Revolution resulted in the United States removing themselves from the British Empire, Britain needed a new place to send their criminals. The prison cells were overflowing, and law enforcers sought for a more humane way of punishing their criminals rather than by death. And so, they decided Australia would be the best place to transport criminals in hope of reforming them. Convicts were first transported to mainland Australia in the 1700’s; transportation to Van Diemen’s Land only begun in the early 1800’s. When Australia gained independence from the British Empire in 1901, the country had long begun its development into the country it is now, all stemming from the hard work of the British convicts who were sent here in the first place.

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