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Original Documents on Aborigines and Law, 1797-1840

Document 37

Original Document 37

Grant of land to the Aboriginal Mission , Lake Macquarie: 29 January 1835



the Governor presents his compliments to M r Oxley and will thank him to reserve Ten Thousand acres of land situated near Reid's Mistake such as will be printed out by M r Bennet as the Gentleman of the London Missionary Society, for the use of the Aborigines, on which subject the Governor will write a Dispatch to Earl Bathurst.

G Hande


29th Jan 1835



No 19 30th January 1836

Let it be notified that they Secretary of State has signified His Majesty's approbation of the Grant of ten Thousand Acres of Land, made by Sir Thomas Brisbane, to the London Missionary Society, in furtherance of their endeavours, to improve the condition of the Native inhabitants of this Territory. But his Lordship desired, that the condition alluded to in the last paragraph of Sir Thomas Brisbane's dispatch "for securing the reversion of the Land to the Crown, in case of failure of the present project", should be attached to the Grant which it is proposed should be made. Let this condition be annexed accordingly


Ra Darling

To the Colonial Secretary



By His Excellency Sir Thomas Brisbane

Know all Men by there Presents that whereas the Revd Danl Tyerman and George Bennett Esqre the members of a deputation sent by the London Missionary Society to visit and establish Missionaries in the South Seas, and in the East, have under taken on behalf of their Society, to provide for the maintenance of one Missionary or more, to be settled at New South Wales for the improvement of the religious and Civil condition of the Aborigines thereof - And whereas in furtherance of their benevolent design, I have ordered that Ten Thousand Acres of Land suitably situated in the said Colony be reserved for the use of the Aborigines and be subject to such "appropriation and appointment as hereinafter expressed. Now therefore by virtue of my authority, as Governor of the said Colony, and in order that the [161] Interests of the Crown and the aforesaid objects may be duly protected I do nominate the Revd Samuel Marsden being a life director of the said London Missionaries Society, John Oley Esq Surveyor General of New South Wales William Wimiss [sic?] Esq Deputy Commissary General, Edward Riley Esqre , Alexander berry Esqre , Robert Campbell Esqre , all of Sydney, And Allman Esqre Commandant of Newcastle to be Trustees of the Land to be hereafter granted and now reserved for the purpose aforesaid, that is to see, ten thousand acres more or less to be duly marked out, as soon as it can conveniently be surveyed, and the said land shall be selected by the Surveyor General, and the said George Bennet and David Tyerman at or near or until called Yawanba or Reids Mistake, and it shall be settled in such manner by Act of Council, or otherwise as may be approved by Earl Bathurst or His [162] Majestys Secretary of State for the Colonies, and the said Trustees shall hold the same upon the trusts following.   Not to alienate the said land or any part thereof, or to make any sale, gift, settlement, or demise thereof, or of any part thereof, at will for years, or for any other estate, except as hereafter mentioned.   That is to say that they shall permit such person or persons, to establish him, her, or themselves on any part of the said lands as may now or shall hereafter be appointed by the said David Tyerman and George Bennett, or by the said London Missionary Society with his, her or their attendants or servants, and that at the request of the Chief Appointee or Appointees aforesaid, They shall convey, and they are hereby empowered to convey for terms of years, or in tail, or in fee simple, any portion of [163] the said lands not exceeding thirty acres in such situation as the said Appointee or Appointees may select to any Aboriginal Native or to any offspring of black and white patents subject to the condition that the same shall not be sold, leh [?] or given to any white person.   That at the request of such Chief Appointee or Appointees as aforesaid of the said Daniel Tyerman , George Bennet or of the London Missionary Society, the said Trustees shall give due notice to any intruders or trespassers and take proper legal steps to remove them from the said land, and that the expense of the said trusts shall be defrayed by   cutting timber on any part of the said land except that which is actually under cultivation, or reserved by the said Chief Appointee or Appointees directions for shelter or ornament, and no other Timber shall be cut except [164] by the Aborigines or their descendants always subject to the directions and approbation of the resident Missionary or Missionaries and except any timber to be hereafter cut for use on the said lands, or for boats for the establishments thereon. That the said Trustees shall not in any manner interfere with the Missionary or Missionaries appointed   or to be appointed as aforesaid in the management of the said lands or his, her, or their approbation of any part thereof, and if any dissatisfaction shall arise between the said Trustees and the said Appointee or Appointees, the same shall be referred to the London Missionary Society but if pressing danger shall arise to the objects of the said Society Charity requiring in the judgement of the said Trustees immediate check, they shall apply to the Supreme Court [165] of New South Wales for a remedy for the same. And the said Trustees shall in all respects so far as their duty of Trustees of the said lands require be guided by the following principle on which the London Missionary Society is founded, which is as follows "It is declared to be a fundamental principle of the London Missionary Society that our design is not to send Presbyterianism, Independency, Episcopacy, or any other form of Church order or government (about which there may be a difference of opinions among many serious persons ) but that it shall be left ( as it ought to be left) to the minds of the persons to whom God may call to the fellowship of his son from among them, to assume for themselves such form of Church Government as to them shall appear most agreeable to the word of God." And from time to time when any of the said [166] Trustees cease to be resident in New South Wales, they or the Survivors of them, or their Successors and any Survivors of the Successors with the approbation of the Governor of New South Wales for the time being shall appoint no Trustees in three months after a Vacancy.


(SGN) T. B.


Grant of 10,000 Acres of Land to the London Missionary Society for the use of the Aborigines. January 1835  


Published by the Centre for Comparative Law History and Governance of Macquarie University, and State Records NSW