Historic Land Grants

A series of articles published in The Critic newspaper by Alex Hume under the pen of "Historicus" during 1923 and 1924.

Early Settlement
The New South Wales Government, have recently presented to the Government of this State the duplicates of the land grants issued by Governors King, Macquarie, and Brisbane, at Sydney. The grants issued by these Governors are not regarded by the legal profession as valid Crown grants, because they are issued in the name of the Governor, and not the Sovereign reigning over these dominions at the date of issue, but the possession of such a grant is regarded by the Lands Titles Commissioners as a valuable link in the chain of evidence which a claimant is required to supply in support of his claim for a Crown grant. The reader of notes must bear In mind that the authors of these land grants or rather the Secretary for State, in permitting the Governors to make these grants, had in mind a system of land nationalisation to a certain limited extent. This is apparent from the wording of the document, which provides for a quit rent being paid annually, and also reserves to the Crown 'the right to take timber from the grant, presumably for public purposes and also the right for taking land for roads, and a condition was also laid down that the grantee was bound to clothe and feed a certain limited number of convicts at his own expense, the number being governed by the extent of the area granted, thus a person obtaining a large grant had to maintain more prisoners than a person obtaining a smaller area. Another condition in most of the grants is one which prevented the grantee from transferring his grant for five years. 1