Rum Rebellion, 26 January 1808To History
With a reputation as a hard disciplinarian and the famous Bounty mutiny behind him, William Bligh was appointed Governor of New South Wales through the recommendation of Sir Joseph Banks in 1805. It was hoped it would be able to bring order to the NSW Military Corps, whose influence in the colony had swelled at this time due to their monopolisation of liquor trade.
He immediately clashed with key figures associated with the Corps, including Lieutenant John Macarthur and following a number of disputes regarding land grant regulations and Macarthur's apparently illegal importation of brewery equipment, called for his arrest. Upon his arrest, the Corps called for his release and had Major George Johnson draw up a petition for the withdrawal of Bligh as governor of New South Wales, which was signed by all members of the Corp and several prominent government and business figureheads.
At 6pm on the 26th January 1808, 20 years after the colony had been founded, the Corps marched to Government house with the intention of arresting Governor Bligh, who they eventually found in his bedroom infamously hiding behind his bed. He remained under house arrest until he was sent to England for trial in 1810.