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 Whiting (c. 1740–1801)

Mary Williams (c.1740-1801), a needleworker, was found guilty on 22 February 1786 at the Old Bailey, London, of stealing clothing worth 20 shillings from a dwelling house. Sentenced to 7 years transportation, she arrived at Sydney aboard the Lady Penrhyn in January 1788 as part of the First Fleet.

Williams married William Whiting on 28 June 1790 at St Philip's Church, Sydney. He had left her by 1795 (for a woman of childbearing age). Mary Whiting's burial on 13 July 1801 was registered both at St Philip's Sydney, and St John's, Parramatta.

* information from Mollie Gillen, The Founders of Australia: A Biographical Dictionary of the First Fleet (1989), p 386

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Whiting, Mary (c. 1740–1801)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 17 June 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Williams, Mary

c. 1740
London, Middlesex, England


12 July, 1801 (aged ~ 61)
Sydney, New South Wales, 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.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.

Passenger Ship
Key Events
Key Places
Convict Record

Crime: theft
Sentence: 7 years
Court: Old Bailey, London
Trial Date: 22 February 1786


Occupation: needlewoman