Parsons Family

Parsons & Lewis Horsehair Drawers & Curlers (S&DHS Cat 1).jpg

Edmund "Ted" was born in Manchester, England in 1855. He was the son of Henry Parsons & Eleanor Parsons Nee Organ. Henry was a silk weaver.

Ted did an apprenticeship as a hair drafter, but by the early 1870's, one of his lungs had collapsed due to the pollution from the coal burning that was required to powered Manchester's many industries.

By 1885, due to his health issues, Ted had migrated to Australia and was working at Laycock's Hair Drafting Company which was located in Sydney.

In 1887, Ted and his business partner Richard Lewis established their first business in Victoria Street, Carlton. During this time Ted was living at 120 Little Oxford Street, Collingwood.

Ted married Emily Amelia Dean in Richmond, Victoria. Emily's parent's Robert Henry Dean & Sophia Dean Nee Buckel had migrated to Australia in 1883 and had settled down in Richmond. Emily was the second child of eight children with only four surviving infancy.

In about 1892, Ted and Richard Lewis established a new factory in Anderson's Road, Braybrook Junction. They relocated a former Oregon framed blacksmith shop from the corner of Barkers Road & High Street, Kew (opposite the Kew Tram Depot) to their new factory site.

Edmund also purchased a terrace style house in nearby Morris Street.

By the early 1900's, Richard Lewis was running other parts of the business and died from Anthrax in 1909.

Edmund's wife Emily died in 1904, at the age of 37 years old. She was buried in the Footscray Cemetery.

In 1905, at the age of 12 years old, Edmund's son Joseph "Joe" Robert started working at his father's factory.

On Easter Monday 1908, Joe heard the train smash at the Sunshine Station and raced there to help.

By 1912, the Parsons' family had moved to a house built beside the factory in Anderson Rd.

In 1913, tragedy struck the Parsons family when young Edmund "Ted Jun."  drowned in the Kororoit Creek behind the factory. In 1910, young Ted has already been rescued from drowning in the creek after suffering an epileptic fit while fishing.

The First World War broke out in 1914 and Joe was required to stay at home as he worked in a "Reserved Industry".

In 1918, Joe married Lillian Mary Francis. She was born on the 21st November 1891 in Esher, England. Lillian and her brother Tom had earlier migrated to Australia. Tom had met Hugh Victor McKay in England and when he arrived in Australia he became Hugh's chauffeur whereas Lillian became a governess, looking after Hugh's children.

 

Edmund died on the 1st October 1918 and is buried with his wife in the Footscray Cemetery.

 

By 1920, Joe was managing the business and employed 8 men which included 5 drafters, 1 curler, 1 spinner's boy, 1 driver and 1 shed worker.

Joe and Lillian had 3 sons (Edmund "Eddie" Francis b6/11/1919, Robert "Bob" Eric b19/1/1921 & Cyril Joseph b28/5/1922 & 1 daughter (Dorothy Lillian b1928).

Joe managed to keep the business afloat during the 1930's Great Depression. Also during the 1930's Joe became a local Councilor and eventually became the Braybrook Shire President for two terms (1938 - 1939) & (1945 - 1949) and the City of Sunshine Mayor for one term (1956 - 1957).

All Joe's three sons worked in the family business.

When World War Two was declared, Joe's business was once again declared a "Reserved Industry" but that did not stop his two sons Ediie & Bob from joining up with the armed services.

During World War Two saw all Joe's sons marrying. 

In 1942, Edmund "Eddie" Francis Parsons married Madge McLeod Myers. They had two daughters & 1 son.

In 1944, Robert "Bob" Eric Parsons married Constance "Connie" Buthoit Bell. Bob and Connie had four children (Peter Robert b21/8/1946), (Barbara Constance b25/4/1949), (John Franic b8/7/1951) & (Lesley Kaye b9/8/1954).

In 1945, Cyril Joseph Parson married Edna May Clifton. Cyril and Edna had five children (Kathryn Anne b9/1/1947), (Robert John b6/4/1962 d6/6/1962) & 3 other children.

In 1945, Joe purchased his business opposition, the firm of  Gunn & Hiskens Pty Ltd at Kensington. Joe's son Edmund "Eddie" became the Secretary of this firm before moving to Brisbane to run the factory at Wynnum, which was located  on the banks of the Brisbane River. Edmund eventually left the business to run a news agency at Murnane, another suburb of Brisbane.

After the end of the Second World War, Joe's two sons Robert "Bob" & Cyril took up the management of the Sunshine Business.

Joe's wife Lillian died on the 27th July 1949 in her home in Graham Street, Sunshine. Lillian was buried in the Footscray Cemetery.

In 1952, Joe's daughter Dorothy Lillian was married to John Gordon Miller.

Joe died on the 15th December 1966 and is buried in the Altona Memorial Park.

Joe was a keen gardener and was one of the Foundation Members of the Sunshine Horticultural Society.

 

Joe's other interests included the Boys' Scouts, St, St. Marks Church, St. Marks Athletic Club, St. Marks & Sunshine Masonic Lodges, Sunshine Co-Operative Housing Society, Sunshine Cricket Club, Sunshine District Band, Sunshine & District Cricket Association, Sunshine & District Patriotic Committee, Sunshine Football Club, Sunshine Park Management Committee, Sunshine Red Cross, Sunshine Swimming & Life Saving Club, Sunshine United Soccer Club & The Rotary Club of Sunshine. In these clubs Joe served in many executive positions including Chairman, President, Vice President  & Secretary.

With Joe's extensive service to the local community, J.R. Parsons Reserve and Parsons Street have be named in his honour.

In 1974, the Eddie and Bob Parsons moved the business operations to their Kensington site. In 1988, after 100 years of continuous operations they sold the business.

In 1978, at the age of 59, Eddie died leaving two sons & one daughter.

Bob died at Footscray on the 12th December 1998. He was cremated and his memorial plaque is at the Altona Memorial Park besides his wife Connie who died later in 2013.

Cyril died on the 28th September 2001 and is buried with his infant son Robert John in the Altona Memorial Park.

Joe's two sons Bob & Cyril also took an interest in the social activities of this Sunshine District.

Cyril was involved in the St. Mark's Sunshine Younger Set Club, Sunshine District Football Club and the Sunshine United & Wattle Cricket Clubs.

Bob was interested in the The Rotary Club of Sunshine and became one of the early Presidents of the Sunshine & District Historical Society. His wife Constance "Connie" was also the Treasurer of the Society and she was heavily involved in the Sunshine Ladies Benevolent Society.

1893        Morris St           Braybrook                         Parsons, Edmund Henry


1895        Morris St           Braybrook                         Parsons, Edmund Henry


1896        Morris St           Braybrook                         Parsons, Edmund Henry


1897        Morris St           Braybrook                         Parsons, Edmund Henry


1898        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry


1899        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry


1900        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry


1901        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry


1902        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

 

1903        Anderson's Rd Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1903        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

1904        Anderson's Rd Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1904        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

1905        Anderson's Rd Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1905        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

 

1906        Anderson's Rd Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1906        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

 

1907        Anderson's Rd Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1907        Morris St           Braybrook    North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

1908        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1908        Morris St           Sunshine      North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

 

1909        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1909        Morris St           Sunshine      North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

 

1910        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1910        Morris St           Sunshine      North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry

1911        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory
1911        Morris St           Sunshine      North Side    Parsons, Edmund Henry


1912        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side     Parsons, Edmund Henry

1912        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1913        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side     Parsons, Edmund Henry

1913        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1914        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side     Parsons, Edmund Henry

1914        Andersons Rd  Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1915        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side     Parsons, Edmund Henry

1915        Andersons Rd  Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1916        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side      Parsons, Edmund Henry

1916        Anderson Rd  Braybrook      West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1917        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side     Parsons, Edmund Henry

1917        Andersons Rd  Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1918        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side     Parsons, Edmund Henry

1918        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1919        Anderson Rd    Sunshine      West Side     Parsons, Edmund Henry

1919        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory

1921        Andersons Rd  Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Curled Hair Factory


1922        Anderson St     Sunshine       West Side    Parsons, Joseph Robert

1922        Anderson Rd    Braybrook    West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1923        Anderson St    Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1923        Anderson Rd  Braybrook      West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers

  
1924        Anderson St    Sunshine       West Side      Parsons, Joseph Robert

1924        Anderson Rd  Braybrook      West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1925        Anderson St    Sunshine       West Side      Parsons, Joseph Robert

1924        Anderson Rd  Braybrook      West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1926        Anderson St    Sunshine       West Side      Parsons, Joseph Robert

1926        Anderson Rd  Braybrook      West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1927        Anderson St     Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1927        Anderson Rd   Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1928        Anderson St     Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1928        Anderson Rd   Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1929    41 Anderson St    Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1929         Anderson Rd  Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1930    41 Anderson St   Sunshine        West Side      Parsons, Joseph Robert

1930         Andersons Rd  Braybrook    West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1931    41 Anderson Rd   Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1931         Anderson Rd   Braybrook     West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1933    41 Anderson St    Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1933        Anderson Rd    Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1935    41 Anderson St    Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1935         Anderson Rd   Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1938    41 Anderson St    Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1938         Anderson Rd   Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1940    41 Anderson St    Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

1940         Anderson Rd   Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers


1942         Anderson Rd  Braybrook       West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers

1942    41 Graham St      Sunshine         West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert

 
1945          Anderson Rd  Braybrook       West Side    Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers

1945    17  Graham St      Sunshine         West Side    Parsons, Joseph Robert

1948          Anderson Rd  Braybrook       West Side    Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers
1948    7    Graham St      Sunshine         West Side    Parsons, Joseph Robert
1948    17  Kingaroy St     Sunshine         West Side    Parsons, Edmund "Eddie" Francis

1950         Anderson Rd   Braybrook       West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers
1950                                 St. Albans                             Parsons, Cyril Joseph
1950    33  Duke St           Sunshine          West Side    Parsons, Robert "Bob" Eric
1950    7    Graham St      Sunshine          West Side    Parsons, Joseph Robert
1950    17  Kingaroy St     Sunshine          West Side    Parsons, Edmund "Eddie" Francis

  

1955          Anderson Rd  Braybrook        West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers
1955    33  Duke St           Sunshine          West Side    Parsons, Robert "Bob" Eric
1955    41  Graham St      Sunshine          West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert
1955    15  Hampshire Rd Sunshine         West Side     Parsons, Cyril Joseph
1955    17  Kingaroy St      Sunshine         West Side     Parsons, Edmund "Eddie" Francis

1960          Anderson Rd   Braybrook      West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers
1960    47  Graham St       Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert
1960    15  Hampshire Rd Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Cyril Joseph
1960    17  Kingaroy St      Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Edmund "Eddie" Francis

 

1965          Anderson Rd  Braybrook      West Side      Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers
1965    33  Duke St           Sunshine        West Side     Parsons, Robert "Bob" Eric
1965    47  Graham St       Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert
1965    15  Hampshire Rd Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Cyril Joseph

 

1970          Anderson Rd   Braybrook     West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers
1970    47  Graham St       Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert
1970    15  Hampshire Rd Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Cyril Joseph
1970    28  Matthews St     Sunshine       North Side    Parsons, Robert "Bob" Eric

 

1974          Anderson Rd   Braybrook     West Side     Parsons & Lewis - Horsehair Drawers & Curlers
1974    47  Graham St       Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Joseph Robert
1974    15  Hampshire Rd Sunshine       West Side     Parsons, Cyril Joseph
1974    28  Matthews St     Sunshine       North Side    Parsons, Robert "Bob" Eric

Ref: S&DHS (Cat No 141)

Ref: Sands & McDougall Directories

Photos: S&DHS