Houses and sailing ships from a long-gone Melbourne

Cheryl Griffin’s latest history article in CBD News examines a photo of a dilapidated house just about to be demolished. The photo was taken in 1915 when the house was already 74 years old.  Located in Bourke St west not far from the corner of William St, it was one of the few buildings left standing from the CBD’s earliest days. Built in 1841 by Dr Farquhar MacCrae, brother-in-law of the diarist and artist Georgiana MacCrae, it was occupied for most of the 1840s by that legal luminary Redmond (later Sir Redmond) Barry until Dr Arthur O’Mullane bought it in 1852 and set up his practice there. Georgiana MacCrae, who visited this house on her first day in Melbourne in March 1841, wrote of wading through mud and clay in her fine London boots as she made her way from Flinders St to her brother-in-law’s Bourke St residence.

Read Cheryl’s article in the latest CBD News here:     (scroll to P15)

Ashley Smith has researched a photo of sailing ships docked at Queens Wharf and Princes Wharf which sat opposite each other on the northern and southern banks of the Yarra between the Falls (roughly Market St) and Spencer St. The wharves were busy right up until the 1930s when the Spencer Street Bridge was built and put paid to commercial ships travelling further upsteam.  Read Ashley’s article in the latest Docklands News here:    (scroll to P16)