With the following Particulars of the State of NORFOLK ISLAND to the time when the ships left it, the Writer has been favoured by LIEUTENANT-GOVERNOR KING.
A court of criminal judicature existed there similar to that in New South Wales, differing only in being composed of five instead of seven members. No civil court, however, had been established.
The civil department consisted of a lieutenant-governor, a deputy judge-advocate, a deputy provost-marshal, and deputy commissary; a surgeon, a store-keeper, and four subordinate officers.
The military consisted of a company of the New South Wales corps.
The settlers were, four seamen who belonged to his Majesty’s ship Sirius; fifteen marines who were discharged at the relief of that detachment; fifty-two settlers from among those whose respective terms of transportation had expired; three officers, and others who held ground by grant or lease, or had purchased allotments from settlers; fourteen from those whose terms of transportation were unexpired, but who held allotments exceeding five acres. The whole number (exclusive of the officers), with their families, was about two hundred and forty.
One hundred and forty-nine men, and sixty-three women, whose terms of sentence had expired, supported themselves by hiring ground from settlers, working for individuals, or at their different callings, (some few were employed as overseers) and labouring for the public; for which they were clothed and fed from the stores, and received such other encouragement as their behaviour merited. The number of this class, with their women and children, was about one hundred and thirty.
The numbers of these who remained under the sentence of the law were as follow:
For life 36
From 10 to 5 years 10
From 5 to 3 4
From 3 to 1 26
From 1 year to 6 months 60
of which number fifty-seven were assigned to settlers and others, on condition of being maintained by them; the rest were occupied as hereafter stated; from which it will be obvious, that no progress in cultivation for the crown could be made, as not more than thirty men were employed in cultivating ground for the public advantage, and even these were much interrupted by incidental work, and by attending the artificers in carrying on the different buildings which were indispensable.