Darlington Convict Settlement c. 1830
(Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts)
Maria Island has undergone many changes since the first crude camps of whalers and sealers were set up on its shores in the early 1800s. The now tranquil island has been, amongst other things, a setting for convict stations, a stronghold for the varied enterprises of Italian entrepreneur Diego Bernacchi, and a base for the National Portland Cement Company.
Each layer of history has left its mark on the island's landscape. Structures have been erected, altered, re-used and demolished in each phase of settlement, leaving a complex, but intriguing legacy of historic heritage.
Further information on Maria Island can be found at our Visitors Guide to Tasmania's National Parks.
World Heritage Listed Darlington Probation Station
The significance of the convict probation era at Darlington was recognised recently as part of the 11 Australian Convict Sites World Heritage Property. (PDF 2.2 Mb)
Darlington is the most representative and intact example of a probation station in Australia. Its 14 convict buildings and ruins are preserved in a layout that reflects the key features of the probation system in Van Diemen’s Land. The site has remained relatively unchanged since the convict era.