Prisoner John POPE 1881

John Pope per Flinders, F.C. 2 years
Photographed at the Hobart Gaol, July 1881 by Thomas J. Nevin
TMAG Ref: Q15624

Verso: John Pope per Flinders, F.C. 2 years
Photographed at the Hobart Gaol on being received July 1881 by Thomas J. Nevin
TMAG Ref: Q15624

There is no number inscribed on the recto of this photograph, unlike the majority in the TMAG collection of prisoner cartes-de-visite in oval mounts which were sourced from the QVMAG in 1983 for exhibition at the Port Arthur prison heritage site, and returned instead to the TMAG. The number verso (446) may be related to admission or discharge from one of the welfare depots, Cascades or Brickfields (see the hand-tinted cdvs of Brittain and Clark also held at the TMAG). If so, the photograph was reprinted from the original negative taken in 1881, to be used again for offenses after the prisoner was discharged from the Hobart Gaol in 1883. The verso gives no indication of the name of the prisoner, but from the inscribed details, this prisoner fits the physical description of John Pope, the ship on which he arrived in Tasmania, the sentence served of 2 years, and discharged free with conditions (FC). This photograph was not reprinted by John Watt Beattie  from Nevin’s original negative,  or from Nevin’s duplicates of his own cdv produced for gaol records from his single sitting with the prisoner. Its verso shows it was removed from paper, probably the prisoner’s criminal record sheet. Many of the later Hobart Gaol records books dating from the mid 1880s retain the prisoner’s mugshot(s) intact (held at the Archives Office Tasmania), but the earlier 1870s mugshots by Nevin have survived mostly only as loose duplicates, so this loose carte is unusual in that respect. This photograph’s late date of production, 1881-83, is possibly one reason it appears to be an original prisoner identification photograph by Nevin, typical of his commercial posing and printing in an oval cdv mount commenced in 1872.


A warrant for the arrest of John Pope per Flinders, notice published on 28 April 1881,  for false pretences, since arrested by Detective Kemp of the Hobart Municipal Police.

John Pope, 50 yrs old,  per Flinders, was arraigned on 26 July 1881, sentenced to 2 yrs for obtaining money by false pretences at the Supreme Court Hobart, where he was photographed by Thomas J. Nevin on incarceration at the Hobart Gaol.

John Pope was discharged from the Hobart Gaol on 30 May 1883.

Source: Tasmania Reports of Crime Information for Police, J. Barnard Gov’t printer