This image is from the Augustus Pemberton collection, one of two collections donated to Rare Books and Special Collections by John Keenlyside in 2008. We are currently digitizing both collections, and they should appear on the Rare Books and Special Collections website in the near future.

The image is of a calendar of prisoners who were tried at the Court of Assize in Victoria on January 4th, 1866. Of the five prisoners tried, three were discharged, one was sentenced to death, and one was sentenced to “penal servitude” for five years.

There are a number of interesting things in this picture. Two of the prisoners do not have last names written on the calendar, and instead have “An Indian” written after their first names. In one case the first name is in brackets, while “An Indian” is not. It is also worth noting that one prisoner, who was sentenced to death by the court, was ordered to be kept in jail (spelled “Gaol” on the calendar) until “Her Majesty’s pleasure be known”.

There is also a double entendre in the calendar. In the case of the first prisoner, who was been sentenced to death, the order to the jailor (“Gaoler”) reads “To be executed”. We assume this means that the jailor is to carry out the sentence, not that the jailor is to execute the prisoner.

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