chapter  1
APPENDIX I LATER HISTORY OF THE AUSTRALIAN AGRICULTURAL COMPANY
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A special Act of Parliament (August 1846) removed restrictions on sales, and the Company, after two years' negotiations, were 'on a footing of complete independence of all interference in the disposal of their lands'. With this background, a tenantry campaign was launched, the half-million acres between the Manning and Port Stephens being reserved for 'the location of emigrant capitalists'. Such persons were to have a perfect freedom of selection at the fixed price of £1 and free passages in a specially chartered vessel. Strzelecki outlined a scheme to irrigate the southern portion of this land from the Karuah, and altogether the scheme was the largest and most practical of the many colonization ventures then contemplated in the Australian settlements. But Lang's visions of the cotton fields of Moreton Bay and bubble schemes to colonize the American west afforded too keen a competition and, although the Company sent a ship in 1849, the response was not as great as expected.