Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Colonial Events 1812

In 1812 a detachment of the 73rd regiment was stationed at Newcastle. Lieutenant Skottowe remained Commandant at the settlement.


Convict Thomas Brady permitted to return to Sydney from Newcastle

January 18

Arrival of convict transport Guildford from London.

February 3

Coalmines and cedar camps at Newcastle visited by Visited by Governor Macquarie 'From Port Stephens the Governor proceeded to Newcastle, where he viewed the Coal Mines, and those parts of the river where Lime is made. Proceeding to the first branch, at the distance of twenty miles from the Town, he was much gratified to find that this useful Settlement, already furnishing the colony with Cedar, Coals and Lime, also promises from the fertility of the soil higher up the River, to provided for the increasing Population of the Country, being fit for the purposes of Agriculture and Grazing. On Sunday the 5th January 1812, the governor departed from Newcastle on his Return to Sydney, and arrived here on the following day, a highly gratified with his tour, and with the hope of deriving considerable advantage from the local knowledge he has thus obtained of the different subordinate settlements, since his departure from the Seat of Government.' - Sydney Gazette

February 21

Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Davey appointed Lieutenant-Governor of the settlements at Van Diemen's Land

March 26

Surveyor George W. Evans departed Sydney in the Lady Nelson reaching Jervis Bay the following day.

April 3

George Evans and party set out from Jervis Bay camping nearby present day Wollongong on 11 April


News reached England of the discovery of Macquarie Island and that 80,000 seals had already been caught at the island in just a few months


A glass business was established by Simeon Lord. He advertised for glassblowers in the Sydney Gazette in May: A glass manufactory having been commenced at Sydney, a Situation offers to a select Number of glass blowers: Those acquainted with which Branch of Profession, who may wish to be situated therein, are requested to make early application at Mr. S. Lord's, Macquarie Place.

June 10

Ship Campbell Macquarie wrecked on Macquarie Island. The cargo of 1650 seal skins, was lost. Captain Richard Siddons with the Officers and crew, saved themselves on the island; and, after residing there from the 10th of June to 11th October were discovered and taken off by the brig Perseverance of Port Jackson. -Ipswich Journal 11 Dec., 1813

June 18

War on Britain declared by United States of America.

July 1

Settlements at Port Dalrymple and Hobart Town were merged into a single colony of Van Diemen's Land, administered from Hobart.

July 10

Publication of Select Committee Report to the House of Commons on transportation to New South Wales. The committee supported Governor Macquarie's policies but recommended fewer tickets of leave be granted.

July 16

Colonial vessels Sally and Boyd wrecked - The Boyd, a small colonial vessel, whose bottom was originally the long boat of the ship Boyd, which was captured at New Zealand in 1809, was last week unfortunately lost with a full freight of wheat from Hawkesbury, on a beach between Hunters river and Port Stevens, commonly called the Sand Hills; two persons drowned, and one saved. The sufferers were James Wallis, who belonged to the vessel, and - ; Hubbard, son of a Mr. Hubbard, settler on the River Hawkesbury, whose intention of coming round was to take care of a quantity of wheat belonging to his father, and which of course has perished with the vessel.' - Sydney Gazette

October 25

Convict transport Minstrel arrived at Port Jackson - Lieutenant John Oxley R.N., Surveyor-General of New South Wales arrived on the Minstrel


The convict ship Emu en route to Hobart with female convicts seized by American privateer Holkar - Naval History of the United States by Thomas Clarke


Departure of the Isabella, Captain George Highton. Wrecked on an Island of the Falklands in February 1813. Passengers on board included Captain Drury, 73rd Regiment, wife and family; 'General' Joseph Holt (Irish rebel leader per Minerva) wife and family; Sir Henry Browne Hayes; 3 returned female convicts; Mr. Madison and three marines and their wives. - Morning Chronicle (London) 21 June 1813

November 26

40,000 Spanish dollars in coins arrive on H.M.S. Samarang. Holes were later made in the centre to create holey dollars and dumps. This was Australia's first official currency