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James Bryan Cullen (c. 1753–1821)

James Bryan Cullen (c.1753-1821), a jockey, was found guilty on 6 April 1875 at the Old Bailey, London, of stealing clothing worth £130. Sentenced to 7 years transportation he was sent to the Ceres hulk until he embarked for New South Wales on the Scarborough, arriving in the colony in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

On 22 May 1788 Cullen received 25 lashes for being insolent to Sergeant Thomas Smith. He was sent to Norfolk island on the Sirius in March 1790. By 1791 he was subsisting himself on a Sydney Town lot; by December he was settled on 10 acres at Grenville Vale. In 1792 he was a constable for the Creswell Bay West Point Stream district and was selling grain to the government.

By mid 1794 Cullen was living with Ann Coombes but had left her for Elizabeth Bartlett by 1797. By 1805 he was farming 58 acres. Cullen left Norfolk Island with Bartlett and their three children on the Porpoise for Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) in December 1807. They settled on 40 acres at New Norfolk, and held 65 acres by 1818.

Cullen and Elizabeth Bartlett were married in Hobart on 25 September 1809. Cullen died at Hobart on 5 April 1821; his age was given as 79.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), pp 89-90

Additional Resources

  • inquest, Hobart Town Gazette, 14 April 1821, p 2

Citation details

'Cullen, James Bryan (c. 1753–1821)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 24 May 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Cullin, James Bryen

c. 1753


5 April, 1821 (aged ~ 68)
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Cause of Death

shooting accident

Cultural Heritage

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Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years