Series S3851 - LAND REGULATIONS - SWAN RIVER COLONY

Identity area

Reference code

AU WA S3851

Title

LAND REGULATIONS - SWAN RIVER COLONY

Date(s)

  • 1828-12-05 - 1834-01-07 (Creation)
  • 1828-12-05 - 1834-01-07 (Accumulation)

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AU WA A617 - GOVERNOR'S ESTABLISHMENT (1828-12-30 -)

Administrative history

The Governor of Western Australia is the personal representative of the sovereign in the State and exercises the powers of the Crown in State Matters. He is the titular head of the Government and performs the official and ceremonial functions attached to the Crown.

The first Governor of Western Australia took office as Lieutenant-Governor, his only authority being a letter of appointment from the Colonial Office dated 30 December 1828. On 14 May 1829, "An Act to provide until the thirty-first day of December 1834 for the Government of His Majesty's Settlement in Western Australia, on the Western coast of New Holland" (10 Geo.IV. No. XXII) received the Royal Assent, but Stirling's Commission as Governor and Commander-in-Chief, with the accompanying Royal Instructions, was not issued until 4 March 1831 and only reached him in Australia at the end of that year.

Although Executive and Legislative Councils were formed at the beginning of 1832 to assist the Governor in the administration of the Colony, the powers of those Councils were restricted. The Governor was subject to the instructions of the Colonial Office and had to report continually, however he was all powerful within the Colony itself. He presided at meetings of both the Executive and Legislative Councils until 1870.

After 1870, by virtue of 33 Vict. No. 13, the Legislative Council became partly elective, and it was presided over by a Speaker. Finally in 1890, Western Australia was granted Responsible Government, and the first Ministry was sworn in on 29 December, 1890.

The last Governor of Western Australia as a Colony was Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Gerard Smith KCMG, whose term of office expired on 29 June 1900 and the first Governor of the State was Captain Sir Arthur Lawley, KCMG, who was sworn in on 1 May 1901.

The first regulations with regard to the conduct of the official business of the Governor's Office were published, with similar regulations for other sections of the Civil Establishment, in August 1834 following the Governor's return from Great Britain.

Archival history

Content and structure area

Scope and content

This volume appears to be a handwritten copy of circulars and memorandums issued in relation to initial land regulations for the Swan River Colony.

The volume consists of two sections:
i) General Regulations and Instructions Relative to Crown Lands in Western Australia, 05/12/1828 - 03/03/1832, and
ii) Regulations Relative to Town and Suburban Allotments in Western Australia, 31/12/1831 - 07/01/1834.

General Regulations and Instructions Relative to Crown Lands in Western Australia:


  • Colonial Office Circular "A" - 05/12/1828 (Colonial Office)
  • Colonial Office Circular "B" - Regulations for the guidance of those who may propose to embark as settlers for the New Settlement on the Western Coast of New Holland, 13/01/1829 (Colonial Office)
  • Colonial Office Circular "B", Substitution - Information for the use of those who may propose to embark as settlers for the New Settlement in Western Australia, 03/02/1829 (Colonial Office)
  • [Division of Lands] - Permanent Liabilities of All Grants, Liabilities which are not Permanent, 26/06/1829 (James Stirling)
  • Form Number 1 of the Survey Office - Report of Selection
  • Colonial Office Circular "C" - Information for the use of those who may propose to embark as settlers for the New Settlement in Western Australia, 20/07/1830 (Colonial Office)
  • Memorandum with reference to previous circular - 14/04/1831 (James Stirling)
  • Colonial Office Circular "D" - Land Regulations Western Australia - Information for the use of those who may propose to embark as settlers for the New Settlement in Western Australia, 01/03/1831 (Colonial Office)
  • Governor's Instructions - Extract, 05/03/1831 (Court of St James)
  • General Order, 24/02/1831 (Horse Guards)
  • Memorandum, 03/03/1832 (Admiralty Office)
  • Regulations referred to in the Forgoing Memorandum, 11/08/1827 (Admiralty Office)

Regulations Relative to Town and Suburban Allotments in Western Australia:


  • Instructions addressed to the Surveyor-General relative to Town Sites and Town Allotments, 31/12/1831 (James Stirling)
  • Regulations relative to Town Allotments (Conditions relative to Perth, Fremantle, Guildford, Kelmscott, Kingston, Albany, Augusta), 1832 - 1834

The exact provenance of this volume is unknown, but it is believed to have originated from the Governor's Establishment in the 1830's. The volume was transferred to the State Records Office from the Premier's Department in December 1964.

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