OUR AIM has been to gather as many South Australian
passenger lists as possible between 1836 and 1851.

Approximately 3000 visited Adelaide
between 1836-1851.
We have virtually all these ship lists
- available here for you to view.


The map on the right gives you
some indication of how difficult
it was for ships to come to Adelaide.
To see a bigger version of this map - CLICK THE MAP

A list of names for people with Unclaimed Letters
at the Post Office, South Australia

CLICK MAP to see Adelaide in 1836
SOUTH AUSTRALIAN TIME-LINE 1834-1851

1836 - Population estimate - 546 persons.

1837 - Proclamation of the Province of SOUTH AUSTRALIA
    June 20th - death of King William IV of England.
    June 21st - Princess Victoria proclaimed Queen

     The SOUTH AUSTRALIAN GAZETTE and COLONIAL REGISTER
         Newspaper was published June 3rd, July 3,
         August 12, Sept 16, Oct 14 and Nov 11

1838 - Population estimate - 6,000 persons
    June 23rd - Defence of SA:
        Marines to be replaced by newly formed
        SA Police Force (Superintendent Inman)
    Sept 1st - no fewer than 13 ships being loaded for
    this Colony, from England, Scotland and Ireland
    3,154 migrants departed from England during 1838

1839 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 240
    Immigration was 477 persons
    Police visited each house to collect the 'Population Returns' - Jan 29
    The SOUTH AUSTRALIAN GAZETTE and COLONIAL REGISTER
    name changed to THE SOUTH AUSTRALIAN REGISTER on June 22

1840 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 250
     Immigration was 2,992 persons
    Population estimate - 14,600 persons
1841 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 100
    Immigration recorded was 776 persons.
    Population at 01 January - 15,485 persons

1842 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 60
    Due to the depressed state of the economy
    642 out of 1,915 houses in Adelaide were vacant
    and 216 were in a state of disrepair. - December.

1843 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 80
    Immigration recorded was 1,213 persons
    and emigration 1,477

In 1844 there were 1302 dwellings and 330 shops in Adelaide,
of which 126 buildings were made of stone
and 710 were made of brick
(from Norwood, Hindmarsh and Bowden districts).

CLICK MAP to View North Adelaide in 1845
(B.3696) View of North Adelaide in 1845.
Image courtesy of the State Library of South Australia
CLICK MAP to see Port Adelaide in 1840

1844 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 120
    The first Colonial census recorded
    17,366 people, (on February 26th 1844)
    Immigration was 1,114 persons and emigration 436.
    Estimates of at least 1,000 persons arriving
    in the colony from New South Wales during the year.


     (B.5758) view of Hindley Street, Adelaide in 1844.
Image Courtesy of the State Library of South Australia

1845 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 120
    Immigration recorded was 2,336 persons and
    emigration 449. Assisted migration resumed.
    Population estimate 31 December - 21,759

1846 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 150
    Immigration recorded was 4,458 persons and emigration 863.
    Population at census, 26 February, was 22,390,
    including 132 at Port Lincoln and 70 on Kangaroo Island.

1847 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 160
    Immigration recorded was 5,645 persons and emigration 885
        600 men from the Parish of St Just, Cornwall
        arrived in Burra to work in the mines.
    Population estimate 31 December - 31,153


1848 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 200
    Immigration was 7,664 persons and emigration 1,042
        Between 1848 and 1854, fourteen groups
        (about 10,000 people) came to Adelaide,
            from the Harz in Germany.
    Population estimate 31 December - 38,666

1849 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 300
    Immigration recorded was 16,166 persons and emigration 2,694
    Population estimate 31 December - 52,904

1850 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 300
    Population estimate 31 December - 63,700
    Immigration recorded was 10,358 persons and emigration 4,221.
    Population estimate 31 December - 63,700



(view of Hindley Street, Adelaide in 1849)
Image courtesy of the State Library of South Australia

1851 - Ships arrived in Adelaide - approx. 280
    Immigration recorded was 8,464 persons
    and emigration 6,025. Population reaches 66,538 by 31 December.
    Adelaide's population 32,810 (Census 01 January - 63,700)
     OLD COLONISTS CELEBRATORY DINNER 1851

GOLD: Five years of steady construction was disrupted by the discovery of GOLD
in the neighbouring state of Victoria in the early 1850s.
It seemed that every able-bodied man left South Australia hoping to make their fortune on the goldfields.
This exodus created a minor financial crisis as the currency went east with the diggers,
and there was an acute shortage of labourers in South Australia.
Following more and more reports of GOLD (in the SA REGISTER - September and October 1851)
being found in the eastern States, we see the first signs of reaction by South Australians.


Sept 1st-Oct 15, 1851 - only 12 ships departed Adelaide each with only a few passengers on board.
The only exception was the CITY OF MANCHESTER which was continuing her voyage (London to Adelaide to Melbourne)
with 98 passengers originally destined for Melbourne from London.
During this time the only ship destined for Melbourne was the Rattler (who regularly travelled between Adelaide and Melbourne).
On this voyage she carried 13 passengers.

THEN - on October 15th 1851 the RATTLER departed Adelaide bound for Melbourne with 43 passengers mostly male.
In the following days the LADY MacNAUGHTON left with 44, the WILD IRISH GIRL with 55 passengers
and the SUSANNE with 17 passengers - all for Melbourne.
By the end of October 1851 another 7 ships departed Adelaide, with approx. 540 passengers
- all bound for Geelong and Melbourne. On October 24th, 1851 the Adelaide Destitute Relief Board announced
they will not maintain the wives and families of men who have left for the Diggings.

Early in November 1851 the SA REGISTER published Captain J C Foyle's invitation
to the working men of South Australia to rush to the gold diggings.
He says "Hasten - depend you will never regret it.
the RATTLER, ELIZABETH and CHRISTINA would
"soon place you in the land of gold, and a few weeks
of honest labour would realise what years of incessant toil
and care would only partially accomplish".

To help counter this 'GOLD" exodus the South Australian government
offered the best price for gold (71 shillings per ounce)
and special police escorts were used to bring gold worth
at least 2 million to the SA Government Assay Office.
Several of our families joined the trek to the Victorian Goldfields
in the 1850s via what was known as the "Overland Route'.
To learn more about this JOURNEY CLICK HERE.


We also have a number of passenger lists for ships which arrived in South Australia after 1851
Visit my website: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~dicummings/Ships/Adelaide1852onwards.htm



Images on this webpage are courtesy of the State Library of South Australia. They may be saved or printed for research or study.
If you wish to use any of them for any other purposes, you must contact the State Library of South Australia to request permission.