Sad tales of Female factory

A very interesting place to see and get an insight into a sad history is the female factory in Tasmania. My visit to the female factory was accidental and it was during one of my trips to Tasmania that I discovered this place.

There are many more beautiful and unique places in Tasmania, refer the section, Travel in Tasmania for more details.

About Cascade female factory

Located in Hobart, Cascade female factory is Australia’s most significant historical site. The factory is associated with the female convicts, operational between 1828 and 1856. The factory was intended to remove the convicts from the negative influences and also to protect the society from what was seen as their immorality and corrupting influence.

The factory was a purpose built, self-contained institution intended to reform the convicts. However, the factory was located in the damp swamp land, which added greatly to the ill health of the female convicts. With overcrowding, poor sanitation and inadequate food and clothes, there was a high rate of disease and mortality among its inmates. As per Department of the Environment and Energy website, by 1838, 208 children had died within the factory out of the population of 794 children admitted or born in the factory since its opening.

The female convicts in the factory produced wool and flax and the main work undertaken was sewing or knitting. The convicts were employed to do these work, however they lived in very poor conditions and under great pressure.

A detailed history and the female convict stories can be read at femalefactory.org.au.

How to get to Cascade female factory?

The historical site of Cascade female factory is just 4 kilometres from Hobart Central Business District (CBD). The drive only takes 10 minutes and the walk takes around one hour.

There is also a bus that goes between Hobart CBD (Mount Stuart) and Forest Road. The Forest Road is around 1.7 kilometres from the factory. All up to date information on buses can be found on the Metro bus transport.

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Closing Notes

My visit to the female factory was very emotional and saddening. The grieving and painful stories of the female convicts and their children can only be felt by visiting the site.

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11 thoughts on “Sad tales of Female factory”

  1. This place looks very interesting and I think it’s important that we learn the history of a place we are visiting. Very sad to hear what these women had to go through but I think its an important place for everything to visit, so that we can learn from this.

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  2. I’d never heard of the Female Factory before but it’s a sad story, not unlike many others in our world. It’s horrible that they were treated so badly, especially the children who were completely innocent.

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  3. I have always thought of Tasmania as a great hiking destination. And I knew of the history of the place. Actually I have been wondering if there are some sightseeing spots related to this sad history of the island. Your post closed this gap. I think it is important to visit such places in order not to forget about the history and the suffering.

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  4. I must admit we had mixed feelings after our visit to Mumbai. Interesting to read your view of the difference between Mumbai and Delhi. And your first visit impressions. Glad it did not disappoint you. We found it loud and crowded. But in contrast we too found peace and space in the temples.

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  5. Not all of history has been kind to women. This factory also seems to have its share of bittersweet memories. I have always wanted to explore Tasmania. I wonder if I would like to see this or not, maybe it would depend on the moment.

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  6. A visit to the Cascade female factory would certainly be a very different view of Tasmania. I am sure the stories of the female convicts would be emotional and saddening. Forced labour facilities like this always are hard to see. But it is good that these stories are not forgotten.

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  7. I can imagine how saddening it is a visit to Female Factory like this one in Tasmania. They were there because they made mistakes, but it didn’t mean they had to live like that. But, people’s views are changing over time. Maybe they had reasons (bad or good) to build a facility like this that we didn’t get to know.

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  8. This is such a fascinating piece of Australian history. I’d probably be teary-eyed witnessing this place in the flesh. It’s hard to reorganize your life and reintegrate into the society again, especially for women in this plight. I’m thinking what it would’ve looked like back in the day.

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  9. Some history is so saddening when you learn about them. Never knew about Female factory. It’s so sad to hear what the women convicts and the children went through in their lifetime.

    Reply

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