Monday, January 7, 2008

More on Michael Joseph Conlon

Surely Michael Conlon is the easiest member of my family to research. Apart from the biographies already posted here, below is an extract from a book on the history of Glebe:

'The Glebe: Portraits and Place'; Freda MacDonnell; Ure Smith, Sydney; 1975; p78-79

"Purves Stree, a small street running into St John's Road, received its name from John George Purves who set up a bakery there in the 1880s and introduced to Sydney the use of 'Thomson Machinery'. Until then, Sydney's bread was made by hand. The machine also allowed for the mashing of potates, greatly facilitating the work of caterers. Mr Purves was an ardent bowler at Glebe Point but he was no match for Mr Michael Joseph Conlon who was three times champion of New South Wales and was five times champion of his club. Whilte he was a skipper the defunct Glebe Club that club wrested the John Young Trophy from the City Club. Bowling was a popular sport for both young and old during the 1880's where 'the young men of sixty was a pleasant sight more frequently met in this climate than in other parts of the world'.

Conlon, a staunch protectionist, set up a pottery works in Redfern, which he later moved to Glebe where he carried on his business for thirty years. Some of his tiles may still be seen outside St James' Church, Forest Lodge; others were recently discovered when repair work was being carried out on the underground Tank Stream. Later, Conlon converted his business into the firm of Broughton, Conlon & Cotter. Mr Conlon lived in Alexandria Street, Glebe Point, and the name of one of his partners is preserved in Cotter Lane."

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