John and Ellen Crothers
... Jospeh and Ellen Crothers ...

 Joseph's Police Career

1. Joseph and Ellen: Family Background

2. Joseph and Ellen Crothers: In England

3. The Voyage

4. In Tasmania

5. Joseph’s Police Career

6. Life at Pontville

7. Joseph's Estate


Three and a half years later, on 18 November 1859, Joseph was dismissed for disobedience. A note at the start of the lists of police appointments said anyone whose name was underlined was not to be reappointed to the force. Joseph was not underlined, so it seems his offence was not sufficiently serious to lead to the extinguishment of his chosen career.

Consequently, on 1 November 1861, he was reappointed as a Petty Constable at Brighton, and confirmed as a member of the force for the newly-established Municipality of Brighton on 19 November 1863.

For some reason, in 1857, in registering his daughter’s birth on 17 May, Joseph described himself as a labourer of Pontville. But, for her baptism on 28 June, he was noted as a constable; he stated his occupation as farmer at Dromedary when he registered the birth of his son, Robert, on 24 December 1859; and he was a Constable of Black Brush when William was born on 15 November 1863.

A police charge book compiled two years before Joseph began his career at Pontville, showed that “in 1854 an average of one person was charged at the police court each day. Most crimes were drunkenness, but there was also theft, gross misconduct, assault, indecent exposure, and suspicion of murder.” (Alexander, page 57 – AOT, POL 16)

By the time Brighton became a municipality in 1863, crime was decreasing, as the transportation of convicts had ceased ten years before.

During the last three years of his life, Joseph had particular responsibility for escorting prisoners to Hobart.

Between 15 July 1868 and 15 February 1871, he escorted about 338 prisoners, an average of 11 per month. Usually he was alone; sometimes he was accompanied by Superintendent Charles Wright or Special Constable George Mills. Most prisoners were going to gaol for sentences of 1 month or 14 days etc.; some were committed for trial; most were ex-convicts (ship named).

Here are the first and the last recorded reports of Joseph’s escort duties, and the first one after Joseph's death:

Date - July 15 1868
Name - Bryant Ellen
Cons - FS
Ship - Attack
Sentence - 1 month
Where from - Kempton
By who escorted - Cons. Joseph Crothers
Date - February 15 1871
Name - Smith Henry
Cons - FS
Ship - Rodney3
Sentence - Comm. for trial
Where from - Pontville
By who escorted - Cons. Joseph Crothers
Date - February 18 1871
Name - Rowe George
Cons - FC
Ship - City of Hobart
Sentence - 9 months
Where from - Kempton
By who escorted - Supt. Charles Wright

Next: Life at Pontville