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Sharp Hutchinson Lewis (1830-1921), Glover and an early Secretary of the YMCA Sydney
Sharp (Sharpe) Hutchinson Lewis was born in 1830 at Ramsgate, Kent, England, the son of John Lewis and Ann Hutchinson and died September 6, 1921, at Petersham, Sydney, Australia. In 1858, he married Mary Morshead Gypson and together they had five children: Mary Ann (1859-1937), William Arthur (1861-1955), Mortimer Kent (1866-1867), Agnes Fanny (1868-1941) and Lillian Eleanor (1870-1932). Before his marriage, Sharp was employed as a Clerk with the London house of the Sydney firm of David Jones and Co in Fenchurch Street when it was decided he should go to NSW to join the company’s staff in Sydney.
Lewis arrived in Sydney in 1854 and went to work with David Jones and Co as planned. In January 1857, Jules Pillet, a highly successful glover at 10 Hunter Street, advertised that he wished to retire and was willing to dispose of his business, The French Glove Depot, with a lease of his premises for six years. On January 1, 1858, Sharp took over the business which, despite some early financial difficulties, he ran successfully for some 16 years. The shop was considered ‘a very fashionable place’ and was just opposite where Henry Parkes had his shop. Sharp said of Parkes that ‘many a chat I used to enjoy with him in those days. He was a clever fellow’. In 1861, Sharp opened a
branch in Brisbane advising his customers that he had made arrangements with his predecessor, Jules Pillet, to select the stock which covered a wide range of quality goods from gloves and umbrellas to haberdashery in Paris and London, ensuring thereby that ‘nothing would be lacking in taste and quality’. He finally disposed of the business to his sister Frances Johnson (nee Lewis) and his assistant Edward Carroll in March 1874.
Lewis later accepted an invitation from James Woodward to return to the firm of David Jones, but he did not remain long with his old employer for in 1879 he sold the family home ‘Kentville’ in Petersham for £1,100 and went, it was said, on an extended trip to England. But this information is incorrect as he, his wife and three of his children, went to live in Dunedin, New Zealand, where he worked for Hallenstein Bros and Co at the New Zealand Clothing Factory as an Inspector of Branches. During his time in Dunedin, he involved himself in the local YMCA as a committee member and also became the secretary of a company to set up a Coffee Palace which sought to ‘combine all the advantages of (more…)
Edward Joy (1816-1898) Pastoralist and Ragged School Philanthropist
Edward Joy was born on 18 June 1816 in Leeds, England, the second son of William Thomas Outhwaite Joy (1785-1855) and his wife Harriet Glover. William, who had been an apprentice and journeyman with Mr Medley, a Leeds Chemist, Druggist and Oil Man, set up business on his own as a seed and oil merchant in 1807. Later, William entered into partnership with his brother Edward, after whom his son was named, and operated the Thwaite Mills near Leeds in a partnership that was eventually dissolved in 1844. William and Edward then each formed a partnership with their own sons. Unlike his family, Edward Junior, as he was known in Leeds to distinguish him from his very prominent uncle, did not remain in the seed and oil business, but became the manager of the New Leeds Gas Company in 1841. In 1843, Edward’s older brother William married Mary Holt and in 1851, Edward married Mary’s sister Eliza. The Joy and Holt families were thus closely linked in an association that Edward would continue in the colony of New South Wales (NSW) through his business partnerships with Thomas Holt, his brother-in-law.
In 1853, Edward and Eliza set sail for the colony of NSW as first class cabin passengers on the Walmer Castle and arrived in Sydney on 12 September 1853. Edward soon set up business in Sydney, utilising his Holt family connections by forming a partnership with George Stranger Leathes, trading as Joy and Leathes, for the purchase of wool for consignments for Lovegrove and Leathes of London and Holt Brothers of Leeds. By 1856, this partnership was dissolved and Edward formed Joy and Company with Andrew Hinchcliff, a partnership which also purchased wool and exported it to England. In 1862, the company was dissolved, but Joy continued to send wool to England on his own account. Joy was also concerned with wool production and entered into several partnerships with Thomas Holt and others in the purchase of leases at Salisbury Plains in the Kennedy District, north of Rockhampton in Queensland. In 1864, in a decision that would materially affect the course of his life Edward, together with Thomas Holt, advanced money to a lessee on Wealwandangie, a property in Queensland. The years 1866-1871 were years of serious depression in the industry with a drought being experienced in 1868, followed by floods in 1869. The partnership with Holt had ended by 1870 after a dispute over Joy’s exercise of power of attorney while his brother-in-law was absent in England during 1866-1868. This matter was the subject of litigation between Holt and Joy and, although it was eventually settled by mediation, it must have soured family relationships. The end result was that Joy sold his share to Holt in 1870 for some £24,000 (in excess of $3 million current value) and then returned to England.
While Joy was to spend only 20 years in the colony, during which time he acquired a modest fortune, he was to make a significant philanthropic contribution to NSW by his championing the cause of the Ragged School movement. Edward and Eliza do not appear to have had any children of their own and they did not have any (more…)