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1-244 (Text)

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I have had the honor to receive a Dispatch from your Lordship, No. 25, rather intimating it as Your Lordship's opinion that Moreton Bay should be open to Colonization.
As Port Macquarie has become almost useless as a penal Settlement from the many facilities afforded to the escape of Prisoners by the extension of Settlers along Hunter's River, and as Norfolk Island would not be sufficient to contain the persons, whom it is found necessary to remove for minor offences to remote parts of time Colony, I have thought it would not be assuming an unsound discretion, if I should take measures for immediately preparing Moreton Bay for the reception of Prisoners; and I have adopted this step with less diffidence, as the Establishment of Penal Depots is the best means of paving the way for the introduction of free population as the example of Port Macquarie abundantly testifies.
For minor offenders.  I have thought Morton Bay would be the fittest Depot on account of its distance and almost impossibility of escape, Its means of immediately affording employment and subsistence for the Prisoners, who may be sent there, and the facilities that a penal settlement in the first instance will afford to the free Settlers, when it may be deemed expedient to throw open that part of the Colony.  

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