Explore your convict past

31 March 2016

A new photographic exhibition that unlocks the history of 40 living Australians and connects them with their convict heritage is on show at the LibraryMuseum until 5 June.

As part of exhibition activities, Albury residents can get help to trace convicts in their own families.

The exhibition, A Convict in the Family?, by documentary photographer Mine Konakci explores the connection between convict settlers, their living descendents and the petty crimes that changed the course of their family history.

The photograph subjects are ordinary Australians who are shown in modern settings with an item representing the petty crime that saw their ancestor sentenced to transportation from England to the new colony.

Konakci says many of Australia's early convicts suffered disproportionately by today's standards in comparison to their crimes.

"A minor crime such as stealing a loaf of bread, resulted in transportation to a new colony and a new path in their family's history," she said.

"As a photographer, what interests me is the impact that the theft of objects - most of a relatively small value - had on people's lives.

"By photographing the desendents with a representation of the item stolen by their ancestor, I have drawn a link to their family's untold history."

A Convict in the Family? is a travelling exhibition by Sydney Living Museums. Entry is free.

Exhibition events:
Tracing the convict in your family - LibraryMuseum
Date: Thursday 7, 14 and 21 April
Time: 11.00am – 12.30pm
What: Is there a rumour in your family that an ancestor was a convict? Now's your chance to investigate. Find out where to start and how to dig further into the records, including those on trial and transportation, penal settlements, emancipation, and families of convicts.
RSVP: Please call 02 6023 8333.

Tracing the convict in your family - Lavington Library
Friday 8 April
Time: 10.00am – 11.30pm
RSVP: Please call 02 6043 5645.