Sir Francis Forbes - Chief Justice of New South Wales.
Francis Forbes was born in Bermuda and after
studying law in London became attorney general of Bermuda.
In 1816 he was appointed Chief
Justice of Newfoundland.
In London in the early
1820's he influenced the drafting of the Act for the better
Administration of Justice in New South Wales and Van
Diemen's Land under which the Legislative council was
He arrived in Sydney in March 1824 on the
and by 1828 was in conflict with landholders over the
breaking up of large holdings; and with Governor Darling who
attempted to have him recalled.
Unwell, he returned
to England in 1836 and was knighted in 1837.
In 1837 he gave evidence before the Select Committee on
Sir Francis and Lady Forbes returned to Australia on the
Alfred in 1838.
Select here to read the journal of George Foster Wise on
the voyage from England to Sydney on the Alfred
Sir Francis Forbes died in 1841.
In 1846 10,049 acres, part of the
Skellatar estate was purchased by
Notes & Links:
1). Find out more about Sir Francis Forbes at the
Australian Dictionary of Biography Online
2). Lady Forbes.......The Peerage, Baronetage, and Knightage of Great Britain and
Ireland for 1860 by Robert P. Dod, Esq......
Reminiscences of Thirty Years' Residence in New South Wales
and Victoria, By Roger Therry. Click on text to continue........
4). Descendants of Sir Francis Forbes (Truth
(Sydney) 4 June 1899).......
has been made in Mr, Russell's book of ' Skellator,' the old
home of the family of the first Chief Justice, Sir Francis
Forbes, and kindly reference is also made to a son, Frank
Forbes, who died all too young in California during the gold
fever of 1849, I think.
Frank Forbes' hobby was a
flying machine, of which he had drawings and designs. He had
an idea that ho could with his machine knock the bottom out
of the modern steam ship for passenger traffic. Some of the
aeronautic efforts of the present day are supposed to be
based, so Russell thinks, on Frank Forbes' original
conception. On Friday, May 19, another son of the first
Chief Justice, David Grant Forbes, celebrated in Sydney his
80th birthday. May the kindly and courteous old gentleman
have many more. Mr. Forbes was called to the Bar in 1819. He
had been P.M. at the old Central Police Court, was then
appointed Crown Prosecutor for the Southern District, and
for many years had been the senior District Court Judge,
from which position he retired only last year. Australia
owes much to Sir Francis Forbes. He it was who brought out
the first charter of justice, established trial by jury, and
gave liberty to the press when Governor Sir Ralph Darling
tried to strangle it.
here to find portraits of the Forbes
family.......Frances Wise in later life, known as Fanny in
all Milbourne's correspondence. Born Frances Mary Ann Marsh
and married George Foster Wise. Came to Australia in 1839
with her Aunt Lady Forbes, wife of Sir Francis Forbes.
George Foster Wise , her future husband, was als on on board
the ship "Alfred" and that is where they met. He kept a
detailed diary of the journey