Prisoner William or John WOODLEY

NLA Catalogue (incorrect information)
Title William Woodley, per Moffatt 3, taken at Port Arthur, 1874 [picture]
Extent1 photograph on carte-de-visite mount : albumen ; 9.3 x 5.6 cm.

A paper copy is held at the Archives Office of Tasmania

William or John Woodley was convicted at the Supreme Court Hobart, on 22 November 1870, sentenced to 10yrs for "b.....y" as the police notice states on his discharge (below), 9th January 1878.

John (his name is inscribed on the verso of this carte as William per the later police record of 1878) Woodley was photographed by T. J. Nevin during incarceration at the Hobart Gaol in 1874, and again on discharge 9th January 1878.

Prisoner Wm Woodley
Photographed by T. J. Nevin 1874
QVMAG Ref: 1985_P_0133

Above: This duplicate or original  with numbering held at the QVMAG, Launceston has verso information the same as  the carte and image of the NLA holding. There are no records of Woodley at Port Arthur. As with many of these cartes, the inscription - and possibly the numbering on recto and verso was added in the early 1900s by an archivist who wrote "Taken at Port Arthur 1874" regardless of fact.The archivist was probably Edward Searle who worked at John Watt Beattie's convictaria Museum and studio from 1911-1915, and prepared many of these prisoner mugshots for sale and for display in exhibitions, for example, the exhibition held in conjunction with the floating museum, the fake convict ship Success, in Sydney in 1912.

Australia's first MUGSHOTS


Below each image held at the National Library of Australia is their catalogue batch edit which gives the false impression that all these "convict portraits" were taken because these men were transported convicts per se (i.e before cessation in 1853), and that they might have been photographed as a one-off amateur portfolio by a prison official at the Port Arthur prison in 1874, which they were not. Any reference to the Port Arthur prison official A. H. Boyd on the NLA catalogue records is an error, a PARASITIC ATTRIBUTION with no basis in fact. The men in these images were photographed in the 1870s-1880s because they were repeatedly sentenced as habitual offenders whose mugshots were taken on arrest, trial, arraignment, incarceration and/or discharge by government contractor, police and prisons photographer T. J. Nevin at the Supreme Court and adjoining Hobart Gaol with his brother Constable John Nevin, and at the Municipal Police Office, Hobart Town Hall when appearing at The Mayor's Court. The Nevin brothers photographed more than 2000 prisoners, the bulk now lost or destroyed. These extant mugshots were the random estrays salvaged - and reproduced in many instances- for sale at Beattie's local convictaria museum in Hobart and at interstate exhibitions associated with the fake convict ship Success in the early 1900s. The mugshots were selected on the basis of the prisoner's notoriety from the Supreme Court trial registers (Rough Calendar), the Habitual Criminals Registers (Gaol Photo Books), warrant forms, and police gazettes records of the 1870s-1880s. The earliest taken on government contract by T. J. Nevin date from 1872. The police records sourced here are from the weekly police gazettes which were called (until 1884) Tasmania Reports of Crime Information for Police 1871-1885. J. Barnard, Gov't Printer.