Australians to learn of their convict ancestry as details of people sent down under 200 years ago are released

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The dark details of their family histories are to be revealed to thousands of Australians this week following the release of details of the convicts Britain sent to the new colony more than 200 years ago.

The British government has released the details to coincide with Australia Day on Tuesday, allowing individuals to search through an online data base to check if they are descended from criminals.

If they do find they have convict ancestors, most Australians are unlikely to be perturbed - surveys have revealed that many regard having a convict as an early family member as an interesting talking point at dinner parties.

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