Jacob Bellette (aka Bellett or Billett) and Ann Harper

Jacob Bellette was born on 24 January 1765 at New Inn Yard, Shoreditch, London, England. He was the son of John and Susannah Bellett (nee Brown). Jacob was baptized on 18 February 1765 at St. Leonard's Church, Shoreditch, London, England. His parents had been married in the same church in 1753.

In 1783 John Bellett, father of Jacob, owned two businesses at St. Mary's Axe, Shoreditch. He is listed as a warehouseman and upholsterer.

Jacob worked as a silkweaver for John Gearing & Co., premises at 39 Duke Street and Cox Square, Spitalfields. It was at their workshop in Cox Square where Jacob was employed, and from here the material which Jacob was found guilty of stealing was allegedly taken.

William Cole, foreman at the Cox Square premises, gave a statement to the arresting officer that differed markedly from the evidence he gave in court (refer Trial Report). Jacob was not represented by an attorney and consequently Cole was not cross-examined.

Jacob was tried at the Old Bailey, 7th January 1865, for the theft of silk lining, unwound silk, and double black wound silk. Sentenced to transportation for seven years he departed the Isle of Wight aboard the Scarborough (FIRST FLEET) 13th May 1787 arriving at Botany Bay 18th January 1788, but eventually debarking at Port Jackson 26th January 1788.

Jacob left Port Jackson 6th March 1790 aboard the Sirius to travel to Norfolk Island. The ship was wrecked in Sydney Cove (Norfolk Island). No lives were lost and most of the supplies were salvaged, but the stranding of the crew on Norfolk Island put a great strain on the resources of the island. By July 24th only 10 to 12 days' provisions remained. The arrival of the Surprize and the Justinian on August 7th saved the settlement. Aboard the Surprize was Ann Harper, future wife of Jacob Bellett. Ann was also a convict who arrived in the Second Fleet in 1790 on the Lady Juliana.

From 1790 Jacob worked on Norfolk Island and was allowed to settle in 1791. Ann was granted 39 acres adjoining Jacob's land. There they met and married.

In February 1791 Jacob Bellett and Ann Harper were jointly issued with a sow. By July they held a Sydney Town lot on Norfolk Island. It is believed they married 5 November 1791 on Norfolk Island. During the next ten years, they had four daughters and three sons.

They had moved to a hilly 12 acre farm at First Settler's Vale by December 1792, and by 1796 Ann held 39 acres in her own name adjacent to the twelve held by Jacob.

Jacob Bellett was a constable with a thriving 26 acre farm in 1805. He grew wheat and maize, owned a cow, 22 sheep, and 16 pigs. He sold 43 sheep and 16 lambs in December 1806 for £89/10/00, and two years later owned a cow, 29 sheep, 7 hogs and 120 bushels of maize.

Jacob and Ann Bellett and family departed Norfolk Island, 3rd September 1808 aboard the City of Edinburgh to travel to Hobart. They left behind them 45 cleared acres, a wooden, shingled house, a barn with a boarded floor and walls and two logged out-houses valued at £60. Jacob's stock entitlement was £82.

Jacob Bellett was granted land (45 acres) at Sandy Bay as compensation for his property on Norfolk Island.

In 1810 Jacob and Ann moved to Pittwater on the Sorell Rivulet, where Jacob had a 60 acre land grant.

He died 2nd December 1813, aged 47, and was buried in St. David's Cemetery, Hobart circa 4 December 1813. His death notice reads:
"Died suddenly at Hobart, 2 December alt.
Mr Jacob Bellett, settler, formerly of Norfolk Island.
A minute or two before his death he was in jocular conversation with some of his friends, from whom he was in an instant snatched at that aweful command of the Supreme Director, leaving behind a wife and infant family in whose affliction all who were acquainted with him must feelingly participate.
Signed ....... Jacob Bellette."

Ann Bellett, using the surname Harrison, was the sole occupant of a wooden house at Sorell in 1842. Her son George, occupied a nearby house.

Ann died at Sorell, 10th September 1842. Her headstone in the Henry Street cemetery at Sorell shows her to be 70 years of age, relict of Jacob Bellett Snr.