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.

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:

Whitaker, Mary (c. 1753–?)

Mary Harrison (c.1753- ) and Charlotte Springmore, both silkwinders, were found guilty on 19 October 1785 at the Old Bailey, London, of throwing acid at a woman they suspected was operating as a prostitute in their area. Sentenced to 7 years transportation, Harrison arrived in Sydney in January 1788 aboard the Lady Penrhyn, with her teenage son Joseph Harrison, as part of the First Fleet.

Mary married (as Mary Harris) George Whitaker on 23 March 1788. The couple were sent, with their baby daughter Hannah, to Norfolk Island on the Sirius in March 1790; they had at least three more children. Mary and her husband were both recorded in New South Wales in 1806, where George had been sent for discharge from the NSW Corps. They were back on Norfolk Island in 1807. Only their oldest daughter Hannah is known to have moved to Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania). Mary Whitaker, George and their two youngest children may have returned to England.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), p 163

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Whitaker, Mary (c. 1753–?)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, https://peopleaustralia.anu.edu.au/biography/whitaker-mary-30905/text38268, accessed 19 January 2021.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Harrison, Mary
  • Perrin, Mary
  • Harris, Mary
  • Wittiker, Mary
  • Whitacre, Mary
  • Whittcar, Mary
Birth

c. 1753
Middlesex, England

Cultural Heritage
Passenger Ship
Occupation
Key Events
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years