Sydney in 1808 | State Library of New South Wales

Sydney in 1808

In the period leading up to the 1808 rebellion, Sydney was a garrison town. Much of the town's buildings and infrastructure were centred around the military. This 1808 map clearly shows the parade ground, around which the military barracks were located (now Wynyard Park). On the evening of January 26, 1808, the men of the New South Wales Corps marched from the parade ground on High Street (now George) up Bridge Street to Government House. They marched to the tune of 'British Grenadiers' and were followed by hundreds of spectators. When they arrived at Government House, the soldiers searched the property, before finally locating Governor Bligh, who, according to legend, was hiding under the bed. He was arrested and deposed and the Corps' commanding officer George Johnston took control of the Colony.

Plan of the town of Sydney in New South Wales, 31st October 1807,
by Jas. Meehan, assistant surveyor of Lands by order of His Excellency Governor Bligh
Printed map  ZM2 811.17/1807/1