James Ruse Was The First Ex-Convicts

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James Ruse was born in 1760 in Cornwall, England. In July 1782, he was found guilty of theft and was sentenced to seven years’ in prison. Ruse spent several years on a prison hulk in Plymouth and was then transported to the colony in New South Wales. He arrived with the First Fleet in 1788 and was freed in the following year. Although not the first person to cultivate land in the colony on his own behalf, Ruse was the first ex-convict to seek a grant, for other emancipists displayed no inclination to take up agriculture. Undeterred by famine, drought and the depredations of convicts Ruse applied himself diligently to his task, helped by Phillip who provided him with provisions, clothing, seed, implements, livestock, a hut and assistance in
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