The Christian Foundations of Australia

However, with the rise of socialism in Britain — especially following the abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire in 1833 — many felons were no longer executed, but instead sent to New South Wales. Fortunately, however, there was by then a big free population in Australia — as well as many Emancipists (alias convicts pardoned by the Colonial Governor). Consequently, the influence there of the bad qualities of the new waves of convict-immigrants — was minimal.14

A lot of violence in Australia was held in check by the vigorous — and sometimes not sufficiently merciful — application of much of the Common Law. Too, the early governors had great power to affect the life of a convict. Thus, many fared well under Governor Macquarie (who was a very humane Presbyterian).