Exmouth is a townsite on the north west coast, 1260 kilometres north of Perth. It was gazetted a townsite in 1963, and was founded as a support town to the Harold E. Holt Communications Station run by the U.S. Navy.
Exmouth is situated on the western side of Exmouth Gulf from which it takes its name. The feature was named by Commander Phillip Parker King RN of HMS "Mermaid" during hydrographic surveys in the area in 1818. The name honours the Viscount Exmouth, Edward Pellew. Edward Pellew was born in Dover, England in 1757 and died in 1833. He had a very distinguished career in the navy, and was regarded as British naval hero. Pellew entered the Royal Navy at 13 years of age, was appointed Lieutenant in 1778 and received his commision as post Captain in 1780. In 1793 he received a knighthood for his heroic conduct in capturing the "Cleopatra", a French frigate. Three years later he was created a Baronet for his heroic services in saving the troops and crew of the British transport "Dutton". In 1804, he was promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral. In 1814, having risen to the rank of Admiral of the Blue, he was elevated to the peerage as Baron Exmouth of Canonteign, County Devon; and, finally, was advanced to a Viscountcy in 1816 for his gallantry in bombarding and totally destroying the fleet and arsenal of Algiers in that year.