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Many immigrants from England worked for the Hon. Edward Flood M.P. in the 1850s. They were employed mainly as sheep overseers, station hands, bullock drivers etc. Would this type of employment have been arranged prior to departure from England or obtained after arrival in Sydney

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Obituary of the man who I presume to be "Hon. Edward Flood" available on Trove. trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/46871777 I think your question would benefit from including the image of that obit, or a transcription of same. (I'm not familiar with the license restrictions on Trove or I'd have popped it in there myself.) –  GeneJ Jan 11 '13 at 16:08
    
I am not sure why the obituary would helo, as no reference is made to his business endeavours. –  Adam Jan 12 '13 at 3:35
    
It appears Flood had several properties at this time. Which particular one are you asking about? –  Charles Jan 13 '13 at 5:26

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In general, immigrants were hired on arrival in Sydney. See 1848 'IMMIGRANTS PER ROYAL SAXON.', The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), 20 July, p. 2 for a description of the process. The squatters with larger properties (such as Flood) would have employed agents for the task of securing new employees on annual contracts each time a ship arrived.

It would certainly have been possible to pre-arrange these matters in England, but the employer then ran the risk that his man would be one of those who died during the voyage.

Remember that at this time, the colony of New South Wales was making the difficult transition from a penal colony to a free settlement. The big landowners were accustomed to being assigned what amounted to slave labour.

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