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.

Edward Pyott Westlake (c. 1752–1828)

Edward Westlake (c.1752-1828), farmer, and father and son John and Noah Mortimer, were found guilty on 20 March 1786 at Exeter, Devon, of stealing 40 pounds of mutton. Sentenced to 7 years transportation, the men were sent to the Dunkirk hulk and were discharged to the Charlotte in March 1787. They arrived at Sydney in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

Westlake, along with the Mortimers, were sent to Norfolk Island on the Supply in February 1788. In September 1788, Westlake asked permission for his family to join him. Because of his good behaviour his petition was granted but his family didn't take up the offer.

By July 1791 Westlake was subsisting three people on a one acre Sydney Town lot, with 58 rods cleared. He was a member of the night watch patrolling the Arthur's Vale area in September 1791. He married Elizabeth Wood in a mass wedding ceremony on the island in November 1791.

Westlake was settled on 24 acres on 15 January 1793 and was listed as having a wife and child in May. By June 1794 the number of children had grown to three and in March 1805 to eight. He was described as a second class settler with 20 acres cultivated and 62 waste, and owned 36 swine. In August 1807 he was recorded as holding 82 acres.

Westlake left Norfolk Island for Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) with his wife and six children on the City of Edinburgh in September 1808, settling on 105 acres at Clarence Plains. He was buried at St Matthews, New Norfolk, on 11 November 1828; his age was given as 77.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), p 377

Citation details

'Westlake, Edward Pyott (c. 1752–1828)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 24 April 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


c. 1752
Sampford Courtenay, Devon, England


10 November, 1828 (aged ~ 76)
New Norfolk, Tasmania, Australia

Cause of Death


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 (livestock)
Sentence: 7 years
Court: Devon
Trial Date: 20 March 1786


Occupation: farmer
Married: Yes
Children: Yes (3)


Children: Yes (7)