28-02-1855: The 1855 Victorian Exhibition, Melbourne.

At the Victorian Exhibition in Melbourne in late 1854, the Ferguson & Urie company were awarded certificates for exhibit 69, Plumber’s work, and exhibit 455, for stained windows. This appears to be the earliest indication of the companies foray into the art of stained glass windows. The extraordinary rate of the erection of churches in the colony, and the Gothic revival in art and architecture, now becomes the driving force in the companies future direction and its part in the formation and history of the colony.

Unfortunately no further articles of significance appear in relation to the company dabbling in stained glass between 1855 and 1860. The gold rush was well under way and practically every able bodied builder and craftsman had left for the central Victorian Goldfields with a shovel over his shoulder.

The company’s next significant breakthrough and change of direction would begin in late 1861.

The Argus, Melbourne, Wednesday 28th February 1855, page 8.

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