The INCONSTANT the Voyage - 1849On 15 February 1849 the INCONSTANT commanded by Captain Patrick Culliton, sailed from Plymouth for Adelaide in South Australia.
On board were 209 Irish female migrants who sailed on the Inconstant from Plymouth to Adelaide are available from shipping records of the times.
These young Irish orphan girls from Newcastle 18, Mullingar 40, Tullamore 18, Mountmellick 22, Parsontown 30, Limerick 24, Tipperary 22, North Dublin 12 (Total 186), left the poverty of Ireland as part of Earl Grey's PAUPER IMMIGRATION SCHEME, to settle in the "new" land of Australia. Charles Esq. WATKINS, Superintendant-Surgeon, with the Matron and her assistant, had charge of these girls. On this trip almost half of them had their period for the first time.
The secretary of Adelaide's ORPHAN IMMIGRATION COMMITTEE, M. Moorhouse, informed parties "desirous of engaging the services of any of these immigrants are requested to apply to the Emigration Agent or at the Native School". Many of the Irish orphan girls found work in the new settlements as servants or seamstresses, as teachers or nannies, and many married settlers.
The names of many of the 209 Irish female migrants who sailed on this voyage are available from shipping records of the times. The Register 9/6/1849 lists 117 of these:
The INCONSTANT reached Adelaide on June 7,1849 and while in port eleven of the crew were "confined for disobedience" which occurred on the voyage.
After repairs the ship left Australia on September 11, 1849 for Callao, Peru, via Wellington,
with four passengers and a cargo of "29 cases Cavendish tobacco (a fine sample), 20 skins Brazillian, and 6 cases Alum".
This was a very light cargo, so the ship was carrying large stones in its hull for ballast.
This book contains a detailed Orphan Register of many of the young women that travelled to Australia
under the PAUPER IMMIGRATION SCHEME.