George Street, Sydney
Dated: c. 01/01/1890
Digital ID: 4481_a026_000126
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This series of photographs was taken by officers of the Government Printing Office during the years 1860s-c.1920. The photographs cover a wide variety of subjects, for example, public buildings, railways, tramways, street scenes, harbour views, Sydney University, groups of people, ships, public occasions, the Botanic Gardens, military camps, wharves, dams and waterways, statues and slums.
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Owner: MHNSW - State Archives Collection
Source: Flickr Commons
What an extraordinary looking building. - I wonder what it was - a Fire Station (with those doors), or the old Ports Authority/ MSB building? At least I found out where it was - at the SE corner of George St and what was then called Queens Wharf at Circular Quay. Photo taken from the old Commissariat Stores building across the road (where the Museum of Contemporary Art is now) - George Street south on the right. The contemporary map (1895) shows a triangular shape to George St there - www.nla.gov.au/apps/cdview?pi=nla.map-rm3443-sd&rgn=0... . Also the building can be seen (on the Persistent URL Zoom) here - www.flickr.com/photos/powerhouse_museum/3041761855/ . I wonder if that is a Gents in the middle of the road, similar to the one in Macquarie Place?
Ah ha! - found it here - www.flickr.com/photos/state-records-nsw/2715092837/ . It was part of the old Sydney Harbour Trust building.
beachcomber, it appears to me that the building with the watchtower and fire doors, after examining your links, is actually the Metropolitan Fire Brigade building shown on this 1905 map here - www.nla.gov.au/apps/cdview?pi=nla.map-f115-sd&rgn=-0.... If you note key #5 and pan the map down and out a little you can see the watchtower on the drawn building. Your first instinct was correct.
I think you are right about the gents, it's in the middle of the street which would limit complaints of urinal smells from pedestrians, it has a well vented roof as well as a privacy screen for the entrance way.
Thanks for that information klah2u, especially the link to the 1905 map which I had not seen before. I can just imagine all the firemen running up the circular staircase at the corner and sliding down a pole! [see also discussion at www.flickr.com/photos/statelibraryofnsw/4289987600/ ]
Metropolitan Fire Station No.3. (they were numbered in the order they were built), Queen's Wharf. See also - acms.sl.nsw.gov.au/item/itemLarge.aspx?itemID=170672 More info - www.fire.nsw.gov.au/page.php?id=177
Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Sydney's older buildings and structures. , and we'd love to have this added to the group!
MHNSW - State Archives Collection
http://www.flickr.com/photos/klah2u http://www.flickr.com/photos/beachcomberaustralia Great research into this one! I've updated our caption to "Metropolitan Fire Station No 3, Circular Quay" AB
The Metropolitan Fire Brigades was formed in 1884. Previously insurance companies had there own fire companies. No. 1 Station was Headquarters Castlereagh Street occupied in 1888 (there were construction delays as the builder went broke, still exists, adjacent to a new station building), No. 2 Station was George Street West 1886 (demolished 1955, now the UTS tower building site on Broadway), and No. 3 Station was Marrickville (now known as Stanmore Fire Station). Circular Quay Fire Station opened in 1893 as No. 3 station and Marrickville was re-numbered as No. 4 at that time, later as No. 7. This picture is taken from the west side of George Street looking south. Queen Street goes down to the Quay to the left and was later renamed Barton Street. The Circular Quay Railway/Cahill Expressway now passes a couple of metres immediately behind the fire station site (other photos show the alignment) and the fire station site and the former Barton Street are now part of a park. No. 3 Station is now The Rocks Fire Station on Kent Street.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Good find! I am slightly disappointed to know it was made of red brick! They commenced building July 1891, and completed January 1893. Which makes the "c.1890" SRNSW date a bit too early. c.1893?.
Another view shortly before its demolition..... http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/6143366156/in/photostream
Nice find quasymody. Did you know that the term "buff", as in train-buff, car-buff, derived from U.S. civilians who were so excited by fires and fire fighting that they would dress in buff coats to match the buff leather coats of the fireman and run to fires to watch them?
AND Fire and Rescue NSW started issuing a new all-buff coloured uniform recently. I saw a bunch of them at a call in the city last week.
Philip C Cohen
Indeed, 1893 was the year the Fire Station was opened … trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/13894393