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.

Mary Watkins (c. 1765–?)

Mary Watkins (c.1765- ) was found guilty on 25 April 1786 at Cowbridge, Glamorgan, Wales, of stealing clothing, including 18 linen caps. Held at the Cardiff Gaol, she embarked on the Friendship for New South Wales in March 1787, transferred to the Charlotte at Rio de Janeiro on 11 August, and arrived at Sydney in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

Watkins was sent to Norfok Island on the Supply in November 1789 and subsisted herself on a Sydney Town lot on which she had cleared 115 rods by July 1791. In June 1794 she was living with Isaac Tarr; they left the island on the Daedalus in November 1794. Tarr married another woman in 1797. Watkins may have died with no record of her burial surviving.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), p 372

Citation details

'Watkins, Mary (c. 1765–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 14 June 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


c. 1765

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Passenger Ship
Key Events
Key Places
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years