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Bennetts, James

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Fast Facts
Type of person Individual
Date of birth c. 1793
Place of birth St. Levan, Trebahor, near Lands End, Cornwall, England
Date of arrival 1836
Principal occupation Farmer
Date of death 1883
Place of decease Bennetts Hill, Aldinga

James Bennet(ts) was born in St. Levan, Trebahor, near Lands End, Cornwall, England in 1793. He was the son of Richard Bennetts (1762-1827) and Margaret (nee Matthew) (1754-1844). Religion – Church of England. James Bennetts was resident in the Aldinga area by 1848 until his death in 1883 (35 years).

James married Mary Trembath (1800-1888) in Cornwall, England on 13 July 1821. The spelling of James’ surname is extremely variable with Bennet appearing in the list of passengers aboard HMS Buffalo in 1836 and the 1840 Common Council election. Bennett appears in list of attendees to a Vice-regal reception for the 1836 colonists, the newspaper announcement for the birth of his youngest son in 1841 and the Ratepayers List. Bennetts is used in the newspaper announcement of his death in 1883 and many of his children used Bennetts.

James and Mary had 6 children (4 sons and 2 daughters):

John Trembath Edward (1823-1899) m. Elizabeth Collagan at the residence of James Bennetts, Aldinga in 1858

James Dent Hosea Roberts (1826-) m. Ann Munth at Yankalilla on 10 June 1857

Peggy Penburthy (1831-1919) m. Levi Lovelock (1827-1907) at Holy Trinity Church, Adelaide on 31 Oct 1849

Mary Ann (1835-1911) m. Joseph Valentine (1835-1917)

Richard Cock Charles Hare (1839- ) born on Kangaroo Island m. Mary Ann Self (1846-1900) on 16 Feb 1865 at St. Stephen’s Church, Willunga

William Perkin (1841- )

James Bennet (44), his wife Mary (36) and their four children John (13), James (10), Peggy (5) and Mary Ann (1) arrived aboard HMS Buffalo on 27 Dec 1836. James was a cabinetmaker and wheelwright. James and his family were living in Adelaide in 1840 and lived there for at least 5 years. In Nov 1840 James Bennet unsuccessfully stood for election to the Adelaide Common Council and received 41 votes. There is no clear trace of the Bennet(ts) family in the 1841 census. By 1848 James Bennetts lived at Bennetts Hill Farm, near Aldinga. James leased section 380 from 1850 and section 379 from 1870 from the South Australian Company. His sons - James farmed sections 179 and 189 and John leased sections 139, 150 and 384.

James Bennetts died, aged 90 years, at Bennetts Hill, Aldinga on 15 Jan 1883 and his wife Mary died, aged 88 years, at Aldinga on 5 Sept 1888 - A colonist of 47 years. They are both buried in St Ann’s Anglican Cemetery, Aldinga and James has a slate headstone carved by George Sara.


  • Passengers in History Database – South Australian Maritime Museum
  • South Australian Births – Index of Registrations 1842-1906
  • South Australian Marriages – Index of Registrations 1842-1937
  • South Australian Deaths – Index of Registrations 1842-1972
  • SA Census 1841
  • SAILIS. CT 157/60
  • Ratepayer List Willunga & Aldinga Councils 1850-1888
  • South Australian Register 15 June 1857:2
  • The Adelaide Express 29 Dec 1866:2
  • South Australian Chronicle and Weekly Mail 31 Oct 1868:7
  • The South Australian Advertiser 26 July 1881:4
  • Evening Journal 12 Sept 1888:2
  • South Australian Register 23 March 1892:7
  • Observer 21 Jan 1911:43
  • The Advertiser 25 Oct 1911:8

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