Letter addressed to Governor King, signed by John Macarthur

1 leaf manuscript

In this letter, John Macarthur, the largest wool producer in New South Wales at this time, writes to Governor King about a number of merino fleeces that he has produced and is sending to London for sale as samples.

SKU SF000086 Category


John Macarthur arrived in Sydney in 1790 holding the rank of Lieutenant in the New South Wales Corps and was appointed as commandant at Parramatta. Maccarthur is recognised as the pioneer of the wool industry that was to boom in Australia in the early 19th century and become a trademark of the nation.

Macarthur is said to have been a rather ‘argumentative and difficult character’ – this becomes more than conjecture in light of the known numerous disputed in which he was involved with fellow officers and the authorities, even resulting in his fighting a number of duels including one with the acting governor, Colonel Paterson, who was badly wounded in the encounter.

Macarthur returned to London for trial over the duel and to avoid a posting to Norfolk Island, eventually resigned his commission to return to the colony in 1805 where he went on to become the largest wool producer in New South Wales.

Additional information



John Macarthur


Ink (iron gall ink), Paper