Politics & Power: Bligh's Sydney Rebellion 1808

On 26 January 1808, William Bligh, fourth governor of New South Wales, was deposed by the New South Wales Corps and placed under arrest. This was a momentous event for the young Colony, just twenty years to the day after the landing of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove.  It was the first and only time military intervention has been used to overthrow a government on Australian soil.

The causes of this act have long been a subject of contention among historians. It does seem clear, though, that the personalities of William Bligh and John Macarthur were significant factors.

Politics and Power: Bligh’s Sydney Rebellion 1808 presents this story through the original pictures, manuscripts and printed works of the time.

Open: 21 January 2008 – 27 April 2008
Picture Gallery
State Library opening hours
Admission: Free

Presented in collaboration with the Historic Houses Trust

Visit the related display The ever memorable 26 January 1808 at the Museum of Sydney