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Author Topic: Convicts Bone and Straw Artifacts  (Read 6175 times)

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Offline Piglet 88

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Re: Convicts Bone and Straw Artifacts
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2018, 08:54:33 »
Norman Cross near Peterborough - A prison for Napoleonic Prisoners of War.

I attended a very interesting event last weekend at Norman Cross, part of the Heritage Weekend. The prison was in use between  1797 and 1814, and in 1801 held 6,500 men, women and children. We had a talk by Paul Chamberlain, who has just finished a good book on the subject, called The Lost Town of Huntingdonshire.

There was one comment that he made, if you misbehaved at Norman Cross, you were sent to the Hulks at Chatham. The prison sounded very organised, with its own hospital, school, good food supply and clothing for all the inmates. It sounds very different to the poor conditions of the hulks.

The prison is just off the Great North Road (A1) and had its own organised Market for selling to 'Day Trippers'. There is a good collection of their work at the Peterborough Museum.


ellenkate

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Re: Convicts Bone and Straw Artifacts
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2010, 12:20:55 »


These are amazing items, I believe Dover Museum has a carved bone sailing ship made by Napoleonic prisoners of war.

-  here you can see an amazing set of Spillikins carved from bone:
http://www.onlinegalleries.com/exhibits/63911

Ellenkate


Offline kyn

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Re: Convicts Bone and Straw Artifacts
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2010, 10:45:31 »
A couple more items  :)

Offline kyn

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Re: Convicts Bone and Straw Artifacts
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2010, 21:54:31 »
The banknote forgeries came up in conversation whilst i was taking the photographs, the men who started on the Medway ships were sent down from Scotland who were having so much trouble with the forgeries everywhere.  It just meant the problem was spread to the south...

Offline HERB COLLECTOR

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Re: Convicts Bone and Straw Artifacts
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2010, 20:12:45 »
The following gleaned from 'Prisoner of War Ship Models 1775-1825' by E C Freeston, Conway Maritime Press, 1987.
The models and toys were made by French prisoners of war, held in hulks and prisons. (Dartmoor prison was originally built for French pows).
Prison uniform was a shirt, trousers and coat, all in saffron yellow with TO stamped in black front and back.
Ordinary prisoners were paid 21/2 p a day, going up to 11 shillings a day for a captain. Higher ranking officers could chose to be put on parole.
The weekly food allowance for each man was 101/2 lbs of bread, 21/2 lbs of meat, 2 lbs of fish + potatoes and other vegtables.
The men were allowed to make articles for sale with the full approval of the goverment. Markets, open to all inside and out, were set up in the prison yard. Objects made by the prisoners would range from simple knick-knacks to ship models up to 5 foot long, quite often a group of men would get together to build a model. Models could be built to commision and there are even accounts of French pows forging banknotes!
Beef bone was the most commonly used material, followed by mutton, veal and whale bone. Baleen, tortoishell,wood, metal, hair and twine were also used, these, as well as paints and handtools were easily available as trade.
The author has this to say about the ship model in the above photos.
'But the most perfect specimen i have seen is.....at Rochester, Kent. Only twelve inches long, it is an exceedingly fine model of a French 74 gun ship. Thought not elaborately carved, the workmanship is superb.......The label says made in the hulks of Chatham in 1795........This provenance is fully authenticated by documents in the Guildhall at Rochester.'
Cable Street The Young'uns

Offline kyn

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Convicts Bone and Straw Artifacts
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2010, 21:28:54 »
Whilst aboard the hulks convicts made items out of bone and straw, these items could be traded, bet upon and sold. 

Wardens bought items as well as the well off families that could board the ship to make fun of the prisoners and have dinner with the captain.  Floating markets could be set up to sell the wares as well as stalls set up aboard the ship.  Some of the work can be found in the Guildhall Museum in Rochester, which i was asked to attend with a friend to take some pictures of these items to be pubished in an upcoming book.  Here is a small selection of the artifacts.

The boat is made of bone and the rigging and other rope is hair.

 

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