Van Diemen's Land Company

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Type of entity

Corporate body

Authorized form of name

Van Diemen's Land Company

Parallel form(s) of name

  • V.D.L. Co.

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Dates of existence



Nineteenth-century British businessmen were interested in developing colonial resources, and the Van Diemen's Land Company was formed in May 1824 to ensure a cheap supply of wool for British factories. The colonial experience of William Sorell and Edward Curr was enlisted. Directors sought a 500,000 acre land grant and Sorell suggested land between Port Sorell and Cape Grim. An 1825 Bill granted only half this area, 'remote from settlers'. No thought was given to the dispossession of Aborigines. A vanguard of officials left England in October assured of a company Charter, which was issued in November 1825. The chief agent (Curr), with Stephen Adey (superintendent), Alexander Goldie (agriculturalist) and Henry Hellyer (surveyor and architect), accompanied by surveyors Joseph Fossey and Clement Lorymer, arrived in Hobart in March 1826. Lt-Governor Arthur's reception was encouraging; however Arthur and Curr soon squabbled over the remote location of the grant.
The imminent arrival of the Tranmere carrying indentured servants, livestock and supplies pushed Curr into settling at Circular Head. For more information see:


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  • EAC

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