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On the morning of July 21, 1840, the Daily News announced the arrival of the ship Rival at Sydney, New South Wales. As ocean steam navigation had not yet extended so far, the advent of this ship with the English mail created the usual excitement. An eager crowd beset the post-office, waiting for the delivery of the mail; and little knots at the street corners were busily discussing the latest hints at news which had been gathered from papers brought ashore by the officers or passengers. At the lower end of King Street was a large warehouse, with an office at the upper extremity, over which was a new sign, which showed with newly gilded letters the words: COMPTON & BRANDON. The general appearance of the warehouse showed that Messrs. Compton and Brandon were probably commission merchants, general agents, or something of that sort. On the morning mentioned two men were in the inner office of this warehouse. One was an elderly gentleman, with a kind, benevolent aspect, the senior partner of the firm.