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.

William Cole (c. 1764–?)

William Cole (c.1754- ) was found guilty on 7 July 1784 at the Old Bailey, London, of the theft of a watch. Sentenced to 7 years transportation he was sent to the Censor hulk in July 1784 and embarked for New South Wales on the Scarborough in February 1787, arriving in the colony in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

Cole was sent to Norfolk Island on the Supply in March 1790. He was supporting 2 people on a Queenborough lot by June 1791. In April 1792 he was off stores, working two acres and selling grain to the government by the end of the year. In May 1794 he was working as a labourer.

Cole returned to Port Jackson on the Kitty in March 1793 but returned to Norfolk Island in October of that year on the Boddingtons. He was described in one record as a stowaway bound for India. He left Norfolk Island again by the Daedalus, landing at Sydney on 23 November 1794. There are no further records. He may have left the colony shortly afterwards.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), pp 76-77

Citation details

'Cole, William (c. 1764–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 16 April 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


c. 1764

Passenger Ship
Key Events
Key Places
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years