Captain Arthur Phillip

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Evaluate the career of Captain Arthur Phillip in his role as the first Governor.

Captain Arthur Phillip’s role as first Governor of the colony of New South Wales proved to be efficient and successful despite the difficulties. Difficulties included, limited supplies and the soils around Sydney were of poor quality making cultivation difficult. Tools were scarce and the Marines were unsupportive and not at all interested in instilling the discipline the convicts required. Along with these chaotic circumstances Captain Phillip, who was under strict instructions to “form an intercourse with the natives”, met with instances of extreme resistance. Phillip’s success was due to his forward thinking and his optimism. Phillip proved to be an effective, just and humane administrator. Settlement was to prove difficult but a challenge Captain Arthur Phillip would ultimately succeed in. Captain Arthur Phillip and the First Fleet arrived in Botany Bay on the 18 January 1788. This site was chosen by Sir Joseph Banks and James Cook in 1770. Phillip soon realized this site was not suitable, the waters were too shallow, the soil was of poor quality and there was no reliable water source. Phillip was aware from Banks and Cook’s journey that further north there was a cove which could prove suitable. On the 26 January 1788 Phillip and the First Fleet arrived in Sydney Cove. The early days were a struggle; some of the supplies had spoiled during the journey and cultivation of food, which by now was imperative, was proving difficult due to the unfamiliar soils and climate. Very few of the convicts had any knowledge of agriculture and tools were scarce. The Europeans has also lost many animals both on the journey and upon arrival. The colony was on the verge of starvation. Phillip faced further difficulties when the Marines, who at times had problems with their own discipline, were not interested in disciplining the convicts. Along with sitting in a court of law...
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