Born about 1763 at Truro, Cornwall, William was a carpenter's crew on the naval ship Sirius, flagship of the First Fleet, which arrived at Port Jackson in 1788. He formed a relationship with Mary SPRINGHAM and they had two surviving children, William and Elizabeth. They went to Norfolk Island on Sirius when it was shipwrecked in 1790 and he elected to remain as a settler when the crew was able to leave the following year. They married in November 1791 when Rev. Johnson visited the island. He obtained a grant of 60 acres at Little Cascade and farmed successfully. Mary died in 1796.
The family of three left Norfolk Island for Hobart Town in 1807 on HMS Porpoise and William received a grant of land at Sorell.
He remarried another First Fleeter in 1810, Jane MEECH, the widow of First Fleet convict William MOULTON, but she died in 1812.
His son William died in 1817, and he died at Sorell in 1835.
"There is no headstone to mark William Hambly's grave. He is recorded as the only First Fleeter to be buried at the old Graveyard on the edge of Pittwater at Sorell. It is said that many of the graves there were marked by wooden crosses and that these were lost in bushfires." [Trish Wood - the Convict and the Carpenter]