Proposed Stock Overland from NSW to South Australia

The Australian

12 September 1837

South Australia. Transportation of Stock from New South Wales, Overland.

During the period that Lieutenant Field, R. N., and Messrs Barnard and Fisher were at Sydney, as commissioners from this Government to purchase supplies for the use of the Colony, they made some enquires on the important subject of transporting cattle, horses, and sheep over-land.

The best informed among the persons from whom they received information seemed to entertain no doubt of the practicability of the scheme, and it is not improbable that the ensuing summer may witness its successful accomplishment.

An offer, we believe, was made many months ago, by the proprietor of a large herd of cattle in New South Wales, to deliver it at Twofold Bay, at 6 per head, giving in some forty or fifty calves; and our renders will see from the following letter, addressed to the commissioners we have named, by Mr. Raphael Clint, at present residing in Sydney, but who was for several years employed in the surveying department in Van Diemen's Land, that he offers to contract to purchase and convey to the Province, by land, two thousand ewes in lamb, three hundred head of cattle, and thirty horses, for the sum of 10,000, a charge which we presume importation by sea would very materially exceed, to say nothing of a great diminution of the risk, inseparable from the lengthened voyage from Sydney with stock must necessarily undergo.

We trust that the publication of Mr Clint's proposal, if it be not the means of obtaining for him its acceptance, will at least call the attention of the colonists to a subject of vital importance to their interests.

Sydney, March 27, 1837.

Gentlemen - With reference to the late conversation on the subject of the extensive immigration of the live stock, overland to South Australia, of which I am the original projector, and author of the letters in the public press, forwarded to your colonial secretary, per Success, 1836, I beg to state that I will contract, for 10,000, to deliver at an appointed rendezvous, - Two thousand young ewes in lamb Three hundred mixed herd of bulls, cows, heifers, bullocks, and steers.

Thirty horses, mares, and geldings, with foals and fillies.

Twenty four true-bred sheep dogs.

And from eighteen to twenty-four free labourers, under the following conditions:-

1. A commissioner shall be sent with funds for the purchase, and to advance the expense of my outfit for twenty-four man, also to look at the quality of the stock proposed.

2. The residue of the 10,000 to be paid to me on my arrival, which residue includes wages for my party and remuneration to myself.

3. I will prosecute instrumental surveys, and every branch of enquiry throughout the journey, with the assistance of three professional gentlemen, and deliver to your colonial government a map and journey of the route, which shall be marked for the guidance of the numbers who will fallow, thus establishing a communication between the colonies.

4. The parties in immediate connexion with me shall furnish me with a passage back, to Sydney, with the least possible delay, paying me two guineas per diem during the period of arrival and departure.

5. That I shall not be debarred from any claim on the liberality of His Majesty's Governtment, for such further reward I may think it reasonable to obtain, for the services rendered to science on the journey.

I beg to add that I have been five years in the survey departments of Van Diemen's Land and Western Australia - that I am an adept in instrumental observations - from which qualifications I conclude it would be much more advantageous to accept my terms, which are estimated from ten to fifteen per cent on the prime cost, than to conclude with any persons incompetent to advance the geographical knowledge and fixed positions of the route.

I should also be willing to treat upon any other terms - either for a sale of the stock after arrival or the care thereof in shares, for which I am qualified.

Raphael Clint, Surveyor, Sydney.

To the South Australian Commissioners, Sydney.