Richard Whitbourne

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Sir Richard Whitbourne (1579[1] – 1628) was an English colonist, author and mariner.

Richard Whitbourne was born in Exmouth in Devon, England. Whilst apprenticed to a merchant adventurer of Southampton, he sailed extensively around Europe and twice to Newfoundland. He served in a ship of his own against the Great Armada under Lord Admiral Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Suffolk. He spent the next thirty years in cod fishing off Newfoundland. He assisted the pirates Peter Easton and Henry Mainwaring to seek pardons from James I of England.[2]

Asked by William Vaughan to govern his colony at Renews in Newfoundland, he did so from 1618 until 1620 when Vaughan abandoned the venture. Whitbourne was sent to establish law and order in the colony, he was the first to hold a court of justice in North America at Trinity in 1615.[3]

In 1620, Whitbourne published A Discourse and Discovery of New-found-land in order to promote colonisation on the island.

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