To this court is likewise given authority to grant probates of wills and administration of the personal estates of intestates dying within the settlement.
In addition to these courts for the trial of crimes, the Governor, the lieutenant-governor, and the judge-advocate for the time being, are by His Majesty’s letters-patent constituted justices for the preservation of the peace of the settlement, with the same power that justices of the peace have in England within their respective jurisdictions.
There is also a vice-admiralty court for the trial of offences committed upon the high seas, of which the lieutenant-governor is constituted. The Governor has, beside that of captain-general, a commission constituting him vice-admiral of the territory; and another vesting him with authority to hold general courts-martial, and to confirm or set aside the sentence. The major-commandant of the detachment had the usual power of assembling regimental or battalion courts-martial for the trial of offences committed by the soldiers under his command.
By this account of the different modes of administering and obtaining justice which the legislature had provided for this settlement, it is evident that great care had been taken, on their setting out, to furnish them with a liable foundation whereon to erect their little colony; a foundation which was established in the punishment of vice, the security of property, and the preservation of peace and good order in the community.The Governor having also received instructions to establish a settlement at Norfolk Island, the Supply sailed for that place about the middle of February, having on board Lieutenant King of the Sirius, named by Captain Phillip superintendant and commandant of the settlement to be formed there. Lieutenant King took with him one surgeon, one petty officer, two private soldiers, two persons who pretended to some knowledge in flax-dressing, and nine male and six female convicts, mostly volunteers. This little party was to be landed with tents, clothing for the convicts, implements of husbandry, tools