An Archaeology of Institutional Confinement: The Hyde Park Barracks, 1848-1887
An Archaeology of Institutional Confinement: The Hyde Park Barracks, 1848-1886
Peter Davies, Penny Crook and Tim Murray
Sydney University Press in association with the Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology
The archaeological assemblage from the Hyde Park Barracks is one of the largest, most comprehensive and best preserved collections of artefacts from any 19th-century institution in the world.
Concealed for up to 160 years in the cavities between floorboards and ceilings, the assemblage is a unique archaeological record of institutional confinement, especially of women.
The underfloor assemblage dates to the period 1848 to 1886, during which a female Immigration Depot and a Government Asylum for Infirm and Destitute Women occupied the second and third floors of the Barracks.
Over the years the women discarded and swept beneath the floor thousands of clothing and textile fragments, tobacco pipes, religious items, sewing equipment, paper scraps and numerous other objects, many of which rarely occur in typical archaeological deposits.
These items are presented in detail in this book, and provide unique insight into the private lives of young female migrants and elderly destitute women, most of whom will never be known from historical records.
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Copyright in this material resides with the author(s) or Sydney University Press, as indicated.