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Carters/Bartram/Griffiths/Brockhoff building

William Street, corner of Henderson Street, built for Carters & Bartram in 1852. Photo after 1920 and before 1923, by Fred Flood for WA Newspapers.

William Bartram went into his business with his brothers-in-law Thomas and Henry Carter in 1852, very shortly after Bartram arrived (according to Erickson) per Eglinton, which was wrecked on arrival, 3 September 1852, when his wife drowned. The new store, probably in the building shown above, opened 27 September 1852, as shown in this advertisement:

Inquirer, 27 October 1852:
MESSRS. CARTER & BARTRAM beg to acquaint the inhabitants of Fremantle and the Colony generally, that they opened their New and Extensive Store William Street, Fremantle, On Monday last, the 27th ult. and call their attention to the entire New Stock of Goods
Ladies' bonnets, shapes, and preservers, ...

Many advertisements were placed for Carter & Bartram in the Inquirer 1852-54. One example:
Inquirer, 29 December 1852, p.1:
Now landing ex '"Dido."
... ALSO,—
Proprietors' brandy in quarter casks, tobacco in kegs
Ironmongery, assorted iron, crates of assorted earthenware, corn sacks, sheep ointment,
small bales of assorted shepherds' clothing, &c, &c.

To be able to show and sell such large items as casks, kegs, crates, sacks, and bales would have required a store of the substantial size of the Carters building corner of Henderson and William Streets from 1852.

In Wise's 1897 PO directory, both Carter and Griffiths appear for the first time. Carter is only mentioned that once [as "Carter & Co. (T. & H.), stores"], while Griffiths continues in 1898 and 1899. An article by 'Groper' (probably J.K. Hitchcock) , published in the Sunday Times in May 1923 mentions that the premises 'have just been demolished at the corner of William and Henderson streets'.

'Groper', 1923: 'At one time, the business of T. and H. Carter and Co. was the most-extensive in Fremantle, and was carried on in the old-fashioned but commodious premises which have just been demolished at the corner of William and Henderson streets'.

Hitchcock 1919:
On the corner of William and Henderson-streets still stands, though in a state of senile decay, the commodious premises in which a large general business was carried on by Mr. Edward Newman, under the style of T. and H. Carter and Co., that being the original name of the firm when it was first established in the very early days. One of its founders, a very old gentleman named William Bartram, was associated with Mr. Newman in the business, but took only a passive interest in its affairs, a very sad event having a cast a gloom over his declining years. This was the loss of his wife, who, in coming from England to rejoin her husband, was drowned through the wreck of the ship Eglington on the coast north of Fremantle. ...
On the death of Mr. E. Newman, sen., the business of T. and H. Carter and Co. was carried on for some years by Mr. B. C. Wood (Fremantle’s first Mayor), who eventually wound it up, and in 1888 removed to Perth, where he established himself in business and was elected to represent West Perth in Parliament. He held the seat for a number of years, and was for some time Minister for Railways and Public Works. Hitchcock 1919.

The site, together with the Detmold/Spicer section, all currently (2022) a carpark, was acquired 2021 by Fiveight, a company of Tattarang, part of the Andrew Forrest empire.

Brockhoff only traded in this building 1903-1906 (see below). From the condition of the signwriting alone it looks like it has been awaiting demolition for a decade or two after 1905. It was demolished in 1923, and the site has been vacant since then until the present day (2022). It is now proposed by an Andrew Forrest company that a hotel be erected on this and the Detmold sites.

Brockhoff's business was later to appear in William Street than Detmolds, to the right. But there was a building on that corner before the Detmold building was erected, and the one in the photo is probably it.

The earliest PO Directory to which I have access is Wise's of 1897. It shows that on the corner of Henderson Street was "Griffiths Brothers (R. Agnew, rep.), tea merchants".

In 1898 the company sounds a little more prestigious: "GRIFFITHS BROTHERS (John P. Routley, manager), tea, coffee & cocoa merchants ; & at Melbourne, Sydney & Adelaide"

Detmolds makes its first appearance in Wise's PO Directory in 1899, between the Eastons and Boltons, bus proprietors and coachbuilders, and Griffiths:
Easton Bros, ’bus proprietor
Bolton & Son, coach builder
DETMOLD LIMITED (WILLIAM), manufacturing stationers (factory)
GRIFFITHS’ TEAS. GRIFFITHS BROTHERS PROPRIETARY LIMITED (John P. Routley, manager), tea, coffee & cocoa merchants, corner of William & Henderson streets (tel. No. 844); & at Hay st. (next to Bon Marche), Perth (tel. No. 1267); also at Melbourne, Sydney & Adelaide

In 1900 there is no longer any mention of Griffiths.

Brockhoff appears in 1903:
Bolton & Son, coach and carriage builders & at 63 Henry st
Detmold Limited (William), manufacturing stationers (factory
Brockhoff & Co. AF.F. self-raising flour mnfrs

In 1905 there is a business between Detmolds and Brockhoffs:
Detmold Limited (William), manufacturing stationers (factory)
Cook Herbt. H. leather mch
Brockhoff & Co. AF.F. self-raising flour mnfrs

They are all still there in 1906.

Then in 1907 both Cook the leather merchant and Brockhoff have gone and there is nothing named between Detmold Limited and Henderson Street from that date onward. It seems that the site has been vacant from a date after 1906 (but possibly well after that) until the present day.

There is no change until 1928, when Detmold become Spicers & Detmold, manufacturing stationers, continuing thus until the directories run out in 1949.

An Andrew Forrest company, Fiveeight, is proposing to build on the corner of Henderson and William Streets a 'boutique' hotel - a six-storey, 117-room, $35 million project, including basement parking, shops, and a rooftop terrace with swimming pool.

References and Links

Wise's Post Office Directories (as available online).

Garry Gillard | New: 22 July, 2022 | Now 17 August, 2022