Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Retraction of Free Pardons

Government Public Notice Government House,
Sydney 27th January 1810

Whereas it has been represented to me that certain persons under the assumed Government which took place on the arrest and removal of William Bligh, Esquire, late Governor and Commander-in-Chief of the territory of New South Wales and its Dependencies, &c., &c., had obtained what were called free pardons and conditional pardons, and that said persons imagine such pardons to be valid and legal, notwithstanding the proclamation issued by me on the 4th instant, wherein all the acts of the Government subsequent to said arrest are declared 'void and of no effect'

This is therefore to give notice that all persons possessed of such free or conditional pardons are hereby required, on or before the 15th day of February next ensuing, to surrender the same into the Secretary's office, on pain of being immediately apprehended and set to Government work in the same manner as they had been previous to their having received such illegal pardons.

And all persons who have obtained certificates of freedom subsequent to said arrest, in consequence of their term of servitude having duly expired, are required to send in to the Secretary's office forthwith said certificates, in order to their being cancelled and legal ones made out to them in their stead.

Historical Records of New South Wales Vol.VII, p. 281