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Neptune, Second Fleet to Australia 1790

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The Neptune was one of the three ships that made up the Second Fleet. Convicts were embarked in December 1789 and the ship sailed from England on 19th January 1790. The treatment of convicts aboard the Neptune was unquestionably the most horrific in the history of transportation to Australia. Convicts suspected of petty theft were flogged to death, most were kept chained below decks for the duration of the voyage, scurvy and other diseases were endemic, and the food rations were pitiful during the voyage. 158 convicts died during the voyage (31%). After anchoring in Sydney Cove on 28th June 1790, a further 269 (53%) convicts were hospitalised upon landing. The Neptune was called the "Hell Ship" for these reasons.

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