How many convicts would have kept Higgins company on the Frisby?

In a bid to discover the names of those aboard the Frisby in August 1754, on their way to Maryland, to the land of the free, to be sold into servitude, I hope to source a copy of The Complete Book of Emigrants in Bondage 1614-1775 by Peter Wilson Coldham, ISBN 0806312211.  Until then, I have found a passage that gives us an idea of how many may have been aboard.

“The scandalous system of shipping off convicted felons in company with honest emigrants was still practised in 1757. The Intelligencer of May 7th contains an advertisement inviting artisans, husbandmen, and boys to take their passage to Maryland as “indentured servants” in the ship Frisby; and a paragraph in the same paper states that forty convicts had just been sent on board the vessel in question, which was a “letter of marque”. The Council had paid the keeper of Newgate £107 2s. in the previous year for transporting thirty-four convicts, indicating a remarkable prevalence of crime. Referring to the transportation system, a historian of Jamaica, writing about 1770, stated that above 2,000 abandoned felons were shipped yearly from England to Virginia and Maryland, and were “as useful as scavengers to a dirty town”.

Exactly which Intelligencer this is taken from is not stated.  I cannot find this quote in The London magazine or Gentleman’s Monthly Intelligencer and have yet to find a digitised copy of the Bristol Intelligencer from that date to read.



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