Law in Early Victoria

Legal History Resources Online aims to facilitate access to legal history resources held in University of Melbourne collections.

Captain William Lonsdale arrived in Port Phillip to become Melbourne's first Resident Magistrate in September 1836. The first Court of Quarter Sessions opened in May 1839, and the first Supreme Court in April 1841 with John Walpole Wallis as the first Resident Judge at Port Phillip of the Supreme Court of New South Wales.

One of the first prominent practitioners of law in Victoria was Henry Moor (1809–1877). Commencing business as a conveyancer in Lonsdale Street in 1842, Moor was admitted as an attorney, solicitor and proctor in the Supreme Court in April 1843. Moor conducted a successful legal practice for many years, served two terms as mayor of Melbourne and was the first registrar of the Diocese of Melbourne.

Sir Redmond Barry (1813–1880) is perhaps the best-known of Melbourne's early legal practitioners. Arriving in Melbourne in 1839, Barry was soon an active member of Melbourne's legal community. He was appointed Solicitor General of the newly-founded colony of Victoria in 1851 and Judge of the Supreme Court in 1852.

REDMOND BARRY

Title: An Address Delivered by His Honor Sir Redmond Barry, One of the Judges of the Supreme Court of Victoria, before the University Forensic Society; and an address, also delivered by him, on the opening of the Circuit Court at Portland
Author: Barry, Redmond, Sir, 1813–1880.
Edition:
Imprint: Melbourne: University Forensic Society, [1860?]
Location: Law Library
Call Number: UniM Law RB 347.04 Bar

LAW REPORTS AND DIGESTS

Title: Reserved Judgments of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, for the District of Port Phillip, Delivered During the Year by William a'Beckett
Published: [Melbourne?]: R.W. Shadforth, (1848–1853) (Melbourne: William Clarke) 1847–1851
location: Law Library
Call number: UniM Law RB 346.945 ABE 1849–1851, UniM Law RB 346.945 ABE 1846-1848
Phys desc.: 5 v.; 24 cm
Notes: Published from the judge's notes, by Robert William Shadforth, Clerk to his Honor

Title: The Victoria Law Times and Legal Observer
Published: Melbourne: Goodhugh and Hough, 1856. Vol. 1 no. 1 (May 1856)-v. 1 no. 25 (November 1856)
Location: Law Library
Call number: UniM Law RB f 346.945 V.L.T.