Reformatory Hulks/Training Ships
The government set up ‘nautical school ships’ as reformatories for wayward or neglected boys. On board these ships, the boys were given nautical and industrial training and instruction, elementary schooling and ‘moral training’. One of the key aims was to provide sufficient training to give the boys an opportunity to obtain meaningful employment after they left the ship.
The Industrial Schools Act of 1866 authorised the Governor to proclaim "any ship or vessel or any building or place together with any yards, enclosures grounds or lands attached thereto to be a 'Public Industrial School' ". Any vagrant or destitute child under the age of sixteen could be directed by two Justices of the Peace to attend an Industrial School and to remain the responsibility of the Superintendent until the age of eighteen, unless apprenticed out or discharged.
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Success Ship also known as Sir Harry Smith Ship
Street Address TBA
The former prison hulk HM Success was later renamed the Sir Harry Smith and was the site of a reformatory for boys.
The first government Reformatory for Boys was aboard this training ship. In 1879 the Reformatory moved to Ballarat.
The Ballarat Boys' Reformatory closed in c.1893. From this period, juvenile offenders were generally sent to smaller, private reformatories, run by charitable or religious organisations. A small section of the Royal Park Depot in Parkville was a government-run reformatory from the 1890s.
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Information courtesy of the State Library of Victoria
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