Page:Transportation and colonization.djvu/127

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AND COLONIZATION.

113

and who had, perhaps, acted in the matter with greater zeal than prudence, were shortly after publicly dismissed from the commission of the peace!

On his arrival at Port Macquarie, Watt obtained permission to marry the widow of the former proprietor of the Gazette, whose valuable property he had reduced to the brink of ruin; and having subsequently succeeded in ingratiating himself into the favour of the police magistrate of the settlement, he was the means of sowing so much dissension between that officer and the harbour-master, that a commission of inquiry had actually to be appointed to proceed to Port Macquarie in the month of May last (1836), to investigate their mutual criminations. The result of that commission was the dismissal of both these functionaries, and an order for the immediate cancelling of Watt's ticket of leave. On being apprised of this order, Watt absconded; and the last account of him, in August 1836, was that he had been apprehended, and flogged as a runaway!

Now, that a criminal like Watt, who ought unquestionably to have been doomed for a long period to hard labour and solitary confinement, should have been allowed to occupy a station of such commanding influence, as that individual