59 – Alexander Pearce – Cannibal: Part 2

In Part 2 of the Alexander Pearce series we continue the story of Alexander Pearce as he and his fellow convicts continue on their escape from Port Macquarie.  They have found themselves in the wild west country, exhausted mentally & physically, and starving with no provisions remaining.  Talk turns to cannibalism, and the horror soon begins….

(48 mins)

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Loddon Plains.   ( Image:https://timbo.id.au/Frenchmans%20Cap)
Pearce confession 1824 (FL3233461 SLNSW P2)
Hell’s Gates by Paul Collins


Podcast recommendation: 

“Australian Aboriginal History”.

Lectures by Professor Richard Broome,  LaTrobe University,  & hosted by the Royal Historical Society of Victoria. (https://www.historyvictoria.org.au/resources/australian-aboriginal-history-podcast-series/)

“The RHSV describes the 16 part series as “[providing]  listeners with insights into Australia’s Colonial past and makes First Nations history the dominant narrative. In doing so, it acknowledges the rights of our First Nations people to land and sea. It allows a wider audience to understand the impacts of government policies and frontier conflicts on First Nations people, and it embraces and celebrates the stories of Indigenous success and contribution.”


COLLINS, Paul, 2002. Hell’s gates : the terrible journey of Alexander Pearce, Van Dieman’s land cannibal. 2002. South Yarra, Vic. : Hardie Grant Books. ISBN 978-1-74064-083-1.

DAVEY, RICHARD INNES, 2004. The Sarah Island Conspiracies. Hobart, Tasmania: Round Earth Compny. ISBN 0-9750051-0-3.

HUGHES, ROBERT, 2003. The fatal shore : a history of the transportation of convicts to Australia, 1787-1868.  London: Vintage. ISBN 978-0-09-944854-9.  https://trove.nla.gov.au/work/5845161/version/268096406?keyword=fatal%20shore%20hughes

PEARCE, ALEXANDER. Narrative of the escape of eight convicts from Macquarie Harbour in Sep. 1822, and of their murders and cannibalism committed during their wanderings. Curio. [Accessed March 2022]. Available from: https://curio.artpro.net.au/exhibit/431/

PEARCE, ALEXANDER, 1824. Alexander Pearce – Confession of murder and cannibalism, 1824 (Image). 1824. [Accessed March 2022]. Available from: http://digital.sl.nsw.gov.au/delivery/DeliveryManagerServlet?embedded=true&toolbar=false&dps_pid=IE3233415

Convict Records: Thomas Cox. [Accessed May 2022]. Available from: https://convictrecords.com.au/convicts/cox/thomas/81790

PEOPLE AUSTRALIA. Biography – Alexander Pearce – People Australia.  [Accessed  March 2022 a]. Available from: https://peopleaustralia.anu.edu.au/biography/pearce-alexander-31474

PEOPLE AUSTRALIA. Biography – Thomas Cox – People Australia. [Accessed April 2022 b]. Available from: https://peopleaustralia.anu.edu.au/biography/cox-thomas-31488/text38943

The Last Confession of Alexander Pearce, 2018. Director: Michael James Rowland.  https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1099204/

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