Emigrant Ships to Australasia 1825 – 1853

Emigrant Ships to Australasia

Medical Journals

Admiralty Class 101 – 1825 to 1853


This index has been compiled to assist researchers to access 28 medical journals that have been copied as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP). Although there is a list on the UK National Archives web site, it is hoped that my list will make it easier to pick up information by entering the ship’s name in a search engine.

As part of AJCP, records of the Admiralty Office held at The National Archives in Kew, England, were copied on microfilm, and include Admiralty Class 101 – Medical Departments, Registers, Medical Journals. Within this class, there is a series of selected journals relating to ships carrying emigrants to Australia and New Zealand.

Australian Joint Copying Project

For information about AJCP please click on the link below. The Preface to Part 7 of the AJCP Handbook in relation to the Admiralty Class 101 states :-

“This Class includes journals kept by surgeons on convict ships, 1816-56, mostly travelling to Australia, and emigrant ships, 1825-53, bound for Australia and New Zealand.” In relation to convict ships click on the link below.

It would seem that these are the only medical journals extant relating to emigrant voyages to Australasia. The other journals in this series relate to voyages to other countries.

AJCP Handbook Part 7, page 71 lists the ships involved in the order on the Reels, and this order is followed in the list below.

The National Archives in Kew, England, holds the originals of these journals and the Archives is gradually entering extracts from the contents of the journals, including the names of those who became sick, as part of their online index. This means a researcher can check online to see if a particular person is mentioned in the TNA online catalogue. Regardless of whether you find an emigrant in the catalogue, I strongly recommend looking at the journal on the AJCP Reel or purchasing a copy of the journal from the National Archives.

General Comments

I do not know the specific regulations or instructions relating to the maintenance of a journal by surgeons. There is a standard pre-printed format that was used by most surgeons. All are hand-written and can be difficult to read.

The standard set of reports includes a sick journal in case order, usually with three columns. The first indicates name, age, quality, when and where taken ill, the second, history, symptoms, treatment, daily progress, and the third, discharged, died or transferred to hospital. Also there is usually a statistical summary of cases by disease classification and a summary under the heading General Remarks. For many trips the surgeons also included in their report a summary list by name of each person treated.

The date period represents the period covered by the journal. I have indicated in the list below a general remark about the quality of a particular report and whether any additional list has been included.


If a reader finds a ship in these lists that is relevant to their research then I recommend examination of the journal.

Since 2020 this can be done online, by going to the AJCP Portal here.

If you would like to use the microfilms to examine a journal, they are held in all State Libraries and may be held by other major regional libraries. Films can also be obtained through your local library if it is part of the Interlibrary Lending scheme.

To check information about the arrival of an emigrant ship a researcher can go to the National Library of Australia historic Australian newspapers web site Trove and carry out a search using the advanced search facility by entering the name of the ship, selecting a date period, and selecting the relevant newspaper. Click on the link below to access this search facility.

Also the date of arrival can be checked by consulting the Historical Records of Australia volumes in book form, and the relevant indent for the voyage on microfiche held by many libraries in Australia.

In addition to accessing the list by alphabetical groupings below, please note there are links to the National Library of Australia site relating to the AJCP and Interlibrary Lending scheme.

Steps to take using this index

Step 1 Check to see if the ship you are interested in is listed in my index.

Step 2  Take note of the Class/Piece/Item number and the AJCP Reel number, eg, Adm 101/76/4, AJCP Reel 3213 for the 1837 voyage of the ship Augusta Jessie. .

Step 3 To view a copy of the journal online go the the National Library AJCP here

Step 4 Enter the AJCP reel number and search. One of the search results should start with the names of the ships on the reel.
    a)    Click on this link
    b)    Click on “Get”, a small box should appear
    c)    Click on “View at Australian Joint Copying Project” This should bring up a page about the contents of the AJCP reel
    d)    Click on “Browse this collection/”. You will then be looking at thumbnail images of the contents of the AJCP reel which you can step through.

Step 5 If you would like to see what is recorded on the National Archives (Kew, England) website click on the link below and in the “Search for” box enter the reference number, eg, Adm 101/76/4. If this reference does not work then enter the shorter version, eg, Adm, 101/76.

Step 6 Check the National Library of Australia historic newspapers website on Trove to see if there is information about the arrival of a particular ship. Also the arrival date can be crossed checked by consulting HRA and indents.

Step 7 If you would like to view the microfilm reels, visit a library that holds AJCP reels and examine the copy of the journal by using the AJCP Reel number.

The National Archives at Kew has placed online for free access (PDF files) several complete medical journals as part of it’s Surgeons at Sea project. Included is the voyage of the 1838/39 voyage of the emigrant ship Juliana; go to www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/surgeonsatsea/

If anyone has any comments or corrections please contact me.

Grahame Thom
March 2021

ADM 101

Piece 76 – Reel 3213

Item – Ship – Period of journal – Ports – quality – remarks

1 Adam Lodge 9 October 1839 – 18 February 1840 Cork to Sydney fair, list

4 Augusta Jessie 21 May 1837 – 21 October 1837 Portsmouth to Sydney fair, list

5 Bussorah Merchant 16 March 1839 – 6 September 1839 Bristol to Sydney good

6 Charles Kerr 14 September 1838 – 11 January 1839 Limerick to Sydney good, list

7 Crescent 3 October 1839 – 11 February 1840 Dublin to Sydney good

8 David Clark 6 June 1839 – 2 November 1839 Greenock to Port Phillip good

10 Florist 12 June 1839 – 29 October 1839

Piece 77 – Reel 3213

2 Garrow 6 November 1838 – 2 March 1839 Belfast to Sydney good, list

4 HMS Hercules 9 September 1852 – 30 March 1853 Campbeltown, Scotland to Cork good, lists

5 HMS Hercules 1 April 1853 – 31 December 1853 Cork to Port Adelaide fair, list

6 Hero 13 April 1839 – September 1839 Leith to Sydney good

7 James Pattison 25 October 1839 – 11 February 1840 Gravesend to Sydney good, list

9 Juliana 17 October 1838 – 21 May 1839 Gravesend to Sydney good, list, wrecked at Capetown (see note)

10 Lady Nugent 10 July 1838 – 30 November 1838 Gravesend to Sydney good

Piece 78 – Reel 3214

2 Mandarin 7 June 1838 – 22 October 1838 Belfast to Sydney good, list

3 Navarino 11 May 1839 – 28 August 1839 Cove of Cork to Sydney good

4 Neptune 1 June 1839 – 3 October 1839 Gravesend to Sydney good

5 North Britain 13 August 1839 – 14 December 1839 Dublin to Sydney good, list

6 Orestes 22 July 1839 – 4 December 1839 Bristol to Sydney good, list

7 Palmyra 11 May 1838 – 9 October 1838 Gravesend to Sydney good, list

8 Parland 24 May 1838 – 7 October 1838 Londonderry to Sydney good, list

9 Prince Regent 29 October 1838 – 22 March 1839 London to Sydney fair, list

Piece 79 – Reel 3214

1 Sir Robert Sale 10 June 1847 – 22 November 1847 Gravesend to Auckland good, list

2 Sir George Seymour 10 August 1847 – 16 December 1847 Gravesend to Auckland good, list

4 Susan 19 October 1838 – 5 February 1839 Londonderry to Sydney good, list

5 Thames 20 September 1825 – 13 April 1826 Cork to Sydney poor

6 Westminster 21 March 1838 – 30 June 1838 London to Sydney good, list

7 William Nicol 3 July 1837 – 28 October 1837 Isle of Skye to Sydney good, list

8 Woodbridge 2 April 1838 – 18 September 1838 Gravesend to Sydney good, list

Note – This journal is available as a PDF file at no cost, go to www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/surgeonsatsea/

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Convict Ships to Australia 1816 – 1867

Medical Journals

Australian Joint Copying Project

Background information on the National Library of Australia site

The National Archives – England

Search page at TNA – Catalogue

Interlibrary Lending

Information on the National Library of Australia site