Charles Augustus FitzRoy

(1796—1858) colonial governor

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(1796–1858) was appointed governor-general of NSW to succeed George Gipps. His aristocratic background, easy charm and varied experience in military, political and colonial service ensured that his arrival in the colony in 1846 was welcome. He recognised the value of making concessions to the colonists where possible, and it was opportune that his term of office coincided with a relaxation of policy from London and the recognition of land claims by squatters. A carriage accident in late 1847, in which he as driver was injured and his wife killed, clouded the rest of his time in the colony. Within a year, allegations began about his improper relationships with women, and his moral character was impugned in London and NSW. This culminated in a public attack by J.D. Lang who, in 1854, moved a vituperative amendment to the Legislative Council's farewell address to the governor in which he included the accusation that FitzRoy's ‘moral influence’ had been ‘deleterious and baneful’.


From The Oxford Companion to Australian History in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Australasian and Pacific History.

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