The documents in this series, previously locatedat ML A79-2, were purchased in 1884 from Lord Brabourne by SirSaul Samuel, the Agent-General for New South Wales, and transferredto the Mitchell Library in 1910. They were part of the accessionwhich became known as the Brabourne collection. Some of these documents were used by the compilersof Historical records of New South Wales, vol 1, part 2 (1892),and include some annotations made by the compilers.
In December 1790 George Vancouver was promoted tothe command of an expedition to the west coast of America and Canada. He was to have command of the expedition on board HMSDiscovery. His second in command, William Broughton, was to havecharge of the tender Chatham. The object of Vancouver's voyage was essentiallytwofold. He was instructed to take over Nootka Island for Britainfrom the Spanish, and to survey the extensive north west coastof the American continent which included the possibility of discoveringa north west passage to Europe. A store ship, the Daedalus under the command of LieutenantHergest, was to rendezvous with Vancouver at Nootka. Sir Joseph Banks was consulted on the outfittingof the expedition which also included Archibald Menzies, botanistand surgeon, the Discovery having been equipped with a gardenhutch. The voyage, which lasted almost five years, departedEngland on 1 April 1791.