Convict-era cotton shirt

About 1830

National Museum of Australia

National Museum of Australia

Convict-era cotton shirt found at the site of the Bridgewater Road Station, Granton, Tasmania.

A hand-stitched shift shirt of woven fabric in white and blue stripe with long sleeves and high collar. The shirt is constructed from a rectangle back and front, which are gathered onto a band of material on each shoulder as well as the base of the collar. A slit has been cut and oversewn in the front rectangle to create a neck opening. The collar is almost cylindrical with the ends in line with the front neck opening. Two handmade spider web round buttons in cream are attached on the right of the collar and two handmade buttonholes on the left.

The sleeves are rectangles, and have been sewn into a tube shape and gathered to fit an opening at the side of the shirt with a diamond-shaped gusset at the underarm. The sleeves are gathered onto a slim cuff band with a handmade spider web round button and buttonhole as a closure. The shirt has side splits at the hem each fitted with a triangular gusset at the top end. The hem has a double fold and is hand stitched. There is staining and some holes on the shirt.

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  • Title: Convict-era cotton shirt
  • Date: About 1830
  • Location: Bridgewater Road Station, Granton, Tasmania, Australia
  • Material: Textile - non specific
  • External Link: National Museum of Australia website
  • Dimensions: W 1635mm x H 1020mm x D 50mm
  • Collection: Convict Era Shirt collection National Museum of Australia