People Australia

  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites
  • searches all National Centre of Biography websites

Browse Lists:

Cultural Advice

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website contains names, images, and voices of deceased persons.

In addition, some articles contain terms or views that were acceptable within mainstream Australian culture in the period in which they were written, but may no longer be considered appropriate.

These articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Australian National University.

Older articles are being reviewed with a view to bringing them into line with contemporary values but the original text will remain available for historical context.

Richard Cornelius Burrows (c. 1759–1818)

Richard Cornelius Burrows (c.1764-1818) and Thomas Ward were found guilty on 17 July 1787 at the Northamptom Assizes of stealing an ewe. Their death sentences were commuted to 7 years transportation. They were sent to the Lion hulk in June 1788, where they remained until they embarked for New South Wales on the Scarborough in November 1789, arriving in Sydney in June 1790 as part of the Second Fleet.

Burrows was sent to Norfolk Island on the Salamander in September 1791. He was sentenced to receive 50 lashes on 11 October 1791 for repeatedly absenting himself from his work. Around 1796 he began living with Elizabeth Cole; they had three children. 

By 1800 Burrows had purchased a 60 acre farm; he sold most of it by 1802 and in 1807 was working 8 acres. Burrows, Cole, and five children left Norfolk Island for Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) in 1808 on the City of Edinburgh, settling on 40 acres at Glenorchy. Richard and Elizabeth were married on 25 February 1810 at St David's Hobart.

Burrows drowned on 27 February 1818 when the ferry he operated capsized in the Derwent; his age was given as 59. 

* information from Michael Flynn, The Second Fleet: Britain’s Grim Convict Armada of 1790 (1993), pp 182-83

Original Publication

Other Entries for Richard Cornelius Burrows

Citation details

'Burrows, Richard Cornelius (c. 1759–1818)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 13 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Burrowes, Richard Cornelius
  • Burroughs, Richard Cornelius

c. 1759


27 February, 1818 (aged ~ 59)
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Cause of Death


Passenger Ship
Key Events
Key Places
Social Issues
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years