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Land Grant to Neil McKellar of sixty acres in Petersham
Sydney: 3 October, 1794. Folio, manuscript in ink on paper, 440 x 367 mm., with original paper seal, official stamps and annotations, ticketed to the reverse; very good, some wear at the old folds. Signed by Grose, Collins, White, Paterson and Laing. An important and interesting land grant from the first years of settlement, signed by Francis Grose (acting governor for two years following Phillip's departure), witnessed by John White, William Paterson, and Edward Laing, and inscribed by David Collins as Governor's Secretary.The grant was made to Neil McKellar (1792-circa 1802), an ensign in the New South Wales Corps, of which Grose had been commanding officer. McKellar had come to Sydney on the Fourth Fleet. By 1797 he was promoted lieutenant, and was in command at the Hawkesbury. He was again promoted by Governor King, who installed McKellar as his aide-de-camp and secretary in 1800. Interestingly, given Paterson's signature here, McKellar would second Paterson in his September 1801 duel with John Macarthur; it was because of his involvement that King ordered McKellar to sail for London on the schooner Caroline. It is known that McKellar was supposed to return via New Bedford, Massachusetts, but he never arrived: he is assumed to have died at sea in 1802, but this has not been confirmed (see the entry in the Australian Encyclopaedia).The parcel of land was for sixty acres in Petersham, the plot to be bounded by Parramatta Road to the north, Craven Place to the south, and Hammond Hill to the east. The substantial holding was to be known as "Glendarnell", presumably a reference to McKellar's Scots' heritage. The lease is recorded in Ryan's Land Grants 1788-1809, along with four other substantial land grants to McKellar.Such grants, signed by the luminaries of the fledgling colony, present a rare and attractive insight into early Sydney, and are becoming increasingly scarce.
      [Bookseller: Hordern House Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2015-03-06           Check availability:      Biblio    


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