The Agricultural Society of New South Wales was established in 1822 by a group of Sydney's leading citizens. They aimed to improve the quality of Australia's primary production by means of contests and competitions. Officers were elected and 11 days later the Society held its first meeting at Walker's Inn, Parramatta. The Society staged its first show in Parramatta in 1823.
In 1836 the Society lapsed, but it was reformed in 1857 and continued to hold its exhibitions at Parramatta until 1868. In that year it moved to Prince Alfred Park, home of the Show from 1869 to 1881.
In 1880, when the Society was suffering severe financial difficulties, and was down to its last £71. It decided to accept a government offer and leased 16 hectares of common land at Moore Park. The first Show was held at Moore Park in 1882, and that location continued to be the home of the Society and the Sydney Royal Easter Show until January 1998.
In 1891 the Society was granted royal assent to use the prefix 'Royal' and became known as the Royal Agricultural Society of New South Wales.
Australian Science at Work website, University of Melbourne, http://www.austehc.unimelb.edu.au/asaw/biogs/A000157b.htm, accessed 13/11/2003.
Royal Agricultural Society of New South Wales website http://www.rasnsw.com.au/home.htm, accessed 13/11/2003.