This line graph, based on data downloaded from the Digital Panopticon, indicates the number of days which elapsed between convicts' sentences to transportation and the dates when they embarked for Australia. The blue line indicates the average length of time for each year, the orange line indicates the minimum length, and the green line the maximum length. The dramatic fluctuations reflect changes in the number of transport vessels available at the time, which in turn was determined in part by whether or not the nation was at war, while the differences between the orange and green lines in part reflect the degree of discretion exercised by judicial officials and the captains of transport ships, who selected which convicts in the hulks would board their ship. For more information, see the transportation webpage.
Credit: Jamie McLaughlin