VDL and NI

Van Diemen's Land & Norfolk Group
 (updated 25 December 2008)

                                                                                  © Irene Schaffer

This group was formed in September 1986 for descendants of the Norfolk Islanders who arrived in Van Diemen's Land between 1805 and 1814. There were some like myself who did not fit into this group but were interested in early Tasmanian history.

The group exchanged information, and I organised excursions to parts of Tasmania where the Norfolk Islanders had settled. Our membership reached 200 before I found it necessary to close, because of my commitments to the Lady Nelson.

Over the past twelve years while I have been involved with the Lady Nelson I have kept in touch with many of the descendants and help them whenever possible. Exiled Three Times Over was published with Thelma McKay as my co-worker, and was originally a hard covered book which is is now out of print, but it has been reprinted in a soft cover. This book contains the profiles of the first people who came on the Lady Nelson and the Porpoise in 1807-8 from Norfolk Island. We had intended to continue the profiles of those who came on the next five ships but other commitment got in the way, and now I feel that most of these have been researched by their descendants.

This year has been the Bicentenary of the arrival of the Norfolk Islanders to Tasmania and celebrations were carried out throughout the year, starting in November 2007 until Otober 2008. Being fortinuate enough to have the Lady Nelon for the special dates of the arrivals of the first five ships many desendants took part in the historical sailing on the dates they arrived in 1807-8.
Descendant's day was also held at the City Hall in March 2008. The year ended with a full day on the Lady Nelson and a conference conducted by the THRA on our behalf. In all a very successful year.

Anyone wishing to contact me about the Norfolk Islanders please use the contact link below.