It’s Saturday, so it must be time for this week’s Find Me Friday.
I’m starting to remember why I stopped doing this last time. Fridays are busy. Perhaps it needs to be renamed as “Where Am I Wednesday” or “Search For Me Saturday”.
OK, on with the game. Congratulations to Snuva who correctly identified on Twitter this building:
It’s the building on the corner of Murray and Liverpool Streets in Hobart that is currently home to a pizza shop.
As far as I can tell, its address is 67 Murray Street, but there’s not a lot of information around about the building (or its predecessors).
(I seem to be good at picking buildings that I can’t find anything about.)
The first reference to the address was from the same place I found out about 15 Murray Street last week – the “Residents of Hobart Tasmania 1867-68”, (which can be found here).
According to that, the address was occupied by Amos Mackerell in 1867 and 68. Digging a little further into the Hobart Valuation Roll of 1875, it appears that 67 Murray Street was a Public House, Amos Mackerell was a publican, the building was owned by Harwood Estate, represented by John Roberts, Agent, and the rateable valuation of the property was 35 pounds.
In March 1875, Amos Mackerell was charged with “keeping a disorderly house” at the Plough and Harrow Inn in Murray Street. I assume it’s the same one.
According to The Mercury of 6 March 1875 (via trove.nla.gov.au), charges were laid on the basis of evidence provided by a Francis Edgar, who was walking past at the time. He complained that the people in the pub were talking loudly. There were “several notorious drunkards” there at the time but Mr Edgar could not say whether they were drunk at the time. There was also no evidence of obscene language having been used.
The court decided that “loud talking” wasn’t enough to convict the publican and the case was dismissed.
Prior to this, in 1868, there was a report of Amos Mackerell appearing in court to defend assault charges for against his wife, and there were conflicting statements about the character of each of them. In 1884 he was charged with obstructing police by failing to supply “a quantity of rum to police for the purpose of analysis”.
He also appears to have had a connection with the Dr Syntax Hotel in Sandy Bay at that time, and there are other reports that the Plough and Harrow had been de-licensed in about 1885.
In 1901 the Gravesites of Tasmania website lists 26-year-old Arthur Barlow as being buried in the paupers gravesites at Cornelian Bay, and his last known address was 67 Murray Street, so it’s possible it was still a pub then – or some other type of accommodation.
The only picture I can find of it is on the State Library website – but interestingly, this sketch says the hotel is near Bathurst Street. I started to get confused.
Anyway, the current building is nothing like the one in the sketch. Because the building has 1925 on the front, the original building is obviously long gone and has been replaced by “Union House”, which is the name that appears on the Murray Street side. Whether there was another building there between 1885 and 1925, I wouldn’t know.
I can only assume that at some time it was the headquarters for one or more unions. If you know anything about its history please let me know. And if I’m wrong about it having been the site of the Plough and Harrow, I’d love to know what it really was.
I could probably keep digging all night, but I think I’ve had enough for now! It’s definitely not a pub now.
This week’s Find Me Friday/Search For Me Saturday is this:
If you think you know where in Hobart this building is, feel free leave a comment below and come back next week to find out if you’re right.