Shortland is the surname of a British naval family, members of which served in Australia and New Zealand during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
My great aunt Dorothy believed we were related to the family through Lieutenant John Shortland, who discovered the first coal in Australia whilst taking prisoners to Botany Bay and also discovered and named the Hunter River.
To date I have no proof of a relationship between my family and the naval Shortland’s (other than that my ancestors shared their surname), only photographs, newspaper cuttings and notes written by Dorothy but in time I am hopeful that I will find the connection and be able to display the information that I find here, together with other stories of my other Shortland ancestors that I find.
The photo below was given to me by my great aunt Dorothy. It was taken in 1947 and shows the re-enactment of the landing of Lieutenant John Shortland in New South Wales in 1797.
The re-enactment was part of two months of celebrations which included a special issue of stamps, however the stamps showed the image of the wrong Lieutenant John Shortland.