First British Ships

The first English settlers to New Plymouth arrived on sailing ships in the 1840s.

The Plymouth Company was established in Plymouth, England in 1840, and merged with the New Zealand Company in 1841. The Plymouth Company selected the site for New Plymouth, and contracted six ships to carry migrants from England.

Many of the streets of New Plymouth are named after directors of the Plymouth Company. These included the Earl of Devon, Thomas Gill, Sir Anthony Buller, Lord Eliot, George Leach, Sir Charles Lemon, Edward St Aubyn, E W W Pendarvis, Lord Courtenay and Hussey Vivian.

Click on the ship's link for the passenger list.

More information

  • For more information, visit our society library of Taranaki history resources.
  • Information on these pages is from the book The Establishment of the New Plymouth Settlement in New Zealand 1841-1843 compiled and edited by J Rutherford and W H Skinner and published by Thomas Avery & Sons Ltd 1940.
  • History of New Plymouth at Wikipedia
  • New Zealand Bound passenger lists and ship details and vessels arriving at New Plymouth at Rootsweb.