Close message Scootle will be undergoing maintenance between 17:00 to 19:00 on 25 September 2023. You may experience intermittent connection during this time. We apologize for any inconvenience caused.

Image Convict jacket

TLF ID R1741

This is a woollen convict jacket from Tasmania. The inside of the jacket is stamped with the mark 'WD', indicating that it was issued by the War Department, and it has an arrow mark, signifying British Government property. These marks date the jacket to after 1855.

Educational details

Educational value
  • This asset illustrates that objects and people associated with convict life in 19th-century Australia sometimes ended up in New Zealand - it is held by the National Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongawera in Wellington.
  • It is an example of the type of jacket worn by male convicts serving fixed terms of seven or fourteen years (they were known as 'canaries' because of the yellow colour of these jackets) to distinguish them from those serving life sentences and free settlers.
  • It illustrates that the British Government employed military methods - such as the use of distinguishing uniforms - in its administration of the colonies.
  • It indicates, by its small size, that some convicts were small - either children or malnourished adults.
Year level

3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12

Learning area
  • History
  • Studies of society and environment

Other details

  • Contributor
  • Name: Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Organization: Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Description: Content provider
  • URL:
  • Name: Education Services Australia
  • Organization: Education Services Australia
  • Description: Data manager
  • Copyright Holder
  • Name: Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Organization: Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
  • Publisher
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organization: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Description: Publisher
  • Address: VIC, AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
  • Resource metadata contributed by
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Address: AUSTRALIA
  • URL:
Access profile
  • Colour independence
  • Device independence
  • Hearing independence
Learning Resource Type
  • Image
  • © Education Services Australia Ltd and Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, 2013, except where indicated under Acknowledgements