First Chief Constable of the Colony

Before Henry and Susannah left England, certain people, moved by their plight, had subscribed £20 to buy them a parcel of goods which Rev. Richard Johnson was to give them on their arrival in the penal colony.

The gift was plundered during the voyage, but Kable won damages of £15 against the ship’s captain in the first civil suit heard in New South Wales. This oddity may have brought Kable to the governor’s notice, although Kable later claimed to have had influential letters of recommendation, for soon afterwards Governor Arthur Phillip appointed him an overseer of his gardens.

Shortly thereafter he became overseer of women and within three years he became a “nightwatchman”, a constable and a further three years service saw him elevated to the position of Chief Constable at which point he and his family were housed in a premises adjoining the gaol (currently the location opposite First Fleet Park at Cirular Quay in The Rocks historic precinct Sydney. Behind Henry and Susannah’s domestic premises he also conducted a licenced spirit house.

In 1802 Henry and several other merchants were convicted for breaches of the port regulations, for illegally buying and importing pigs from a visiting ship. Henry was subsequently dismissed from his position as Chief Constable.