On the 3rd of the month three warrants of emancipation passed the seal of the territory: one to John Trace, a convict who came out in the first fleet; having but three months of his term of transportation remaining, that portion of it was given up to him, that he might become a settler. The second was granted to Thomas Restil (alias Crowder) on the recommendation of the lieutenant-governor of Norfolk Island, on condition that he should not return to England during the term of his natural life, his sentence of transportation being durante vitae. The third warrant was made out in favour of one who whatever might have been his conduct when at large in society, had here not only demeaned himself with the strictest propriety, but had rendered essential services to the colony—George Barrington. He came out in the Active; on his arrival the governor employed him at Toongabbie, and in a situation which was likely to attract the envy and hatred of the convicts, in proportion as he might be vigilant and inflexible. He was first placed as a subordinate, and shortly after as a principal watchman; in which situation he was diligent, sober, and impartial; and had rendered himself so eminently serviceable, that the governor resolved to draw him from the line of convicts; and, with the instrument of his emancipation, he received a grant of thirty acres of land in an eligible situation near Parramatta.* Here was not only a reward for past good conduct, but an incitement to a continuance of it; and Barrington found himself, through the governor’s liberality, though not so absolutely free as to return to England at his own pleasure, yet enjoying the immunities of a free man, a settler, and a civil officer, in whose integrity much confidence was placed.
[* He was afterwards sworn in as a peace officer.]
On the 13th the Royal Admiral sailed for Canton. Of the private speculation brought out in this ship, they sold at this place and at Parramatta to the amount of L3600 and left articles to be sold on commission to the amount of L750 more.
Captain Bond was obliged to leave behind him one of his quartermasters and six sailors, who ran away from the ship. The quartermaster had served in the same capacity on board of the Sirius, and immediately after his arrival in England (in the snow) engaged himself with Captain Bond for the whole of the voyage; but a few days before the departure of the ship from this port, he found means to leave her, and, assisted by some of the settlers, concealed himself in the woods until concealment was no longer necessary. On giving himself up, he entered on board the Atlantic; but on his declaring that he did not intend returning to England, the governor ordered him into confinement. The sailors were put into one of the longboats, to be employed between this place and Parramatta, until they could be put on board a ship that might convey them hence.