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John Pascoe Fawkner
October 20, 1792 - September 4, 1869


John Pascoe Fawkner was an early pioneer, businessman and politician of Melbourne,born in London in 1792.

In 1835 he financed a party of free settlers from Van Diemen's Land (now called Tasmania), to sail to the mainland in his ship, Enterprize.

Fawkner's party sailed to Port Phillip Bay and up the Yarra River to found a settlement which became the city of Melbourne.

As an 11 year old, he accompanied his convict father being transported as part of a two ship fleet to establish a new British colony in Bass Strait in 1803.

The colony landed at Sullivan Beach, near modern day Sorrento. For several months the colony struggled to survive.

There were some 27 convict escape attempts, including that of William Buckley.

Lack of wood and fresh water eventually persuaded Lieutenant-Governor David Collins to abandon the colony in 1804 with the
settlers and convicts departing for the new town of Hobart in Van Dieman's Land.

In Hobart the young Fawkner assisted his father in his bakery, timber business and brewery.

In December 1819 transported convict, Eliza Cobb, and John Pascoe Fawkner loaded up a cart and moved to Launceston.

They were married on the 1822-12-05, with a permit from Governor George Arthur.

They established a bakery, timber business, bookshop, a newspaper (The Launceston Advertiser), nursery and orchard. Soon after Eliza had received a pardon, Fawkner obtained a licence to run the Cornwall Hotel.

In April 1835 Fawkner purchased the tops’l schooner, Enterprize, to search for a suitable settlement site in the Port Phillip District.

John Batman led an exploring party to Port Phillip District in May 1835, on board the sloop Rebecca.

He explored a large area in what is now the northern suburbs of Melbourne, as far north as Keilor, and saw it as ideal country for a sheep run, before returning to Launceston.

When the Enterprize was ready to leave in August 1835, at the last moment creditors prevented Fawkner from joining the voyage. she moored at the foot of the present day William Street.

In 1835 the settlers disembarked to build their store and clear land to grow vegetables.

The Fawkners arrived in the Port Phillip District in 1835 on the
second trip of the Enterprize.
Fawkner's diary reads: 'Warped up to the Basin, landed 2 cows, 2 calves and the 2 horses.'

Keen to secure his place in history, Fawkner opened Melbourne's first hotel on the corner of William St and Flinders Lane and had ordered a printing press from Tasmania.

While awaiting its arrival he published the Melbourne
Advertiser in 1838.

The Advertiser's first nine weekly editions were handwritten in ink on four A4 size pages.

The first printed edition appeared in March.

It was closed down in April for want of a newspaper license from Sydney.

Fawkner's 'Port Phillip Patriot and Melbourne Advertiser' was
commenced in 1839.

Fawkner acquired a property in 1839 as one of eleven lots in the subdivision of the Coburg district by the government surveyor, Robert Hoddle.

The property was called Pascoeville, and was bounded approximately by the Moonee Ponds Creek, Gaffney Street, Northumberland Road and the western prolongation of Boundary Road.

He lived at his farmhouse and at his townhouse in Collingwood between 1840 and 1855.

In 1851 he was elected to the first Legislative Council of the Port Phillip District and in 1856 he was elected to the first Parliament of the self-governing colony of Victoria, as MLC for Central Province.


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