John Cutler was born in 1809 in Stanton Drew, Somerset. He moved to Lydney where he obtained work as a shepherd’s boy and then as a farm labourer and ploughman. At the age of 19, he was brought before the Gloucester Assizes for housebreaking and theft of a coat and shoes from the house of Henry Morse, a Yeoman of Lydney. 0n 2 April 1828, he was found guilty and sentenced to death which was later commuted to transportation for life.
He was transferred to a hulk and then to the Manlius which set sail on 18 July 1828 arriving in Van Dieman’s Land on 9 November 1828. He was employed as an assistant to Dr Garratt up to December 1835 and then on public works. He was given his ticket of leave on 11 Sept 1837 and conditional pardon on 9 December 1841 and 2 December 1842.
In October 1848, at the Cambell Town Agricultural Show, Cutler was awarded £2 for fourteen years of services as a general farm servant to Mr. Gibson of Pleasant Banks. In July 1854 he was awarded a similar prize £5 for the length of service and good conduct with Mr. Gibson.