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Between 1614 and 1775 more than 50,000 English men, women, and children were sentenced to be deported to the American colonies for crimes ranging from the theft of a handkerchief to bigamy or highway robbery. After years of painstaking research, the names of nearly all those transported were extracted from official court records by Peter Coldham and published in the landmark work The Complete Book of Emigrants in Bondage in 1988 and its Supplement in 1992, forming the largest and most complete passenger list of its kind ever published. From this unexpected source the researcher at last had the means of learning the names of the persons transported to the colonies, the charges against them, the dates and places of sentencing, the ship names, and the places of arrival in the colonies.
The original volume of Emigrants in Bondage published in 1988 acknowledged that there were some notable omissions from the list of transported felons then printed, which remained to be researched and remedied. The Supplement of 1992 began to supply the omissions, but now with the publication of More Emigrants in Bondage, Mr. Coldham has closed the remaining gaps. Altogether there are some 9,000 new and amended records in this important new work, which is arranged and annotated in the same way as the parent volume. To the original list of 50,000 records, these additions come as a windfall, arising from the availability of previously closed archival resources and the re-examination of conventional transportation records such as Assize Court records, Circuit Court records, and the quaintly-named Sheriffs' Cravings, to which can be added newspapers and printed memoirs.
The addition of 9,000 records to the canon makes this the most important list of ships' passengers to be published in years. Whether as a list of additions or corrections, this new work is an indispensable tool in the researcher's arsenal, and anyone using the parent volume and supplement cannot possibly ignore this volume. Questions about the peopling of colonial America come readily to mind when looking at a book like this--questions about ancestors, too--and the answers found here are both challenging and surprising.