07-12-1861: The 1861 Melbourne Industrial Exhibition.

The 1861 Melbourne Industrial Exhibition is recognised as the event that changed the course of the Ferguson & Urie Company history. This exhibition is where the Scottish Stained Glass Artist, John Lamb Lyon would have undoubtedly been convinced to join the firm in late 1861.

Ferguson & Urie received an honorable mention for ornamental glazing, and John Lamb Lyon, for a design for stained glass. Lyon joined the firm a short time after this exhibition and between 1866-1873 was installed as a partner in the firm.

The 1861 Exhibition was almost exclusively Victorian. The poorly constructed exhibition building was erected in William Street and was prone to leaking. The glass roof, supposedy copied from the London’s Crystal Palace, was painted white during 1857–58. The Exhibition Building was the main concert venue for the Melbourne Philharmonic Society from 1854 to 1866 and also served as an interim lecture theatre for the university (1855) and as the venue for Temperance League rallies in 1857. The last function to be held there was Governor Darling’s Vice-Regal Ball of 1864 and it was demolished in the late 1860s, and the existing Mint building erected on the site during 1871–72. [1]

The Argus, Melbourne, Saturday 7th December 1861, page 7.

“THE EXHIBITION. LIST OF AWARDS”.

“The following completes the list of awards in connexion with the Industrial Exhibition […]”.

“HONOURABLE MENTION […]”

“Fergusson [sic] and Urie – Ornamental glazing”

“Lyon, J.N [sic] – Design for stained glass […].”

Melbourne's first exhibition building photographed during the 1861 Melbourne Exhibition (I.TAF 451) [In-line image from the State Library of Victoria]

Melbourne’s first exhibition building photographed during the 1861 Melbourne Exhibition (I.TAF 451) [In-line image from the State Library of Victoria]

The 1872 Mint Building which now stands on the site of the first Exhibition Building

The Mint Building built in 1872 in William Street, which now stands on the site of the first Exhibition Building

Foot notes:

[1] The Latrobe Journal, No 56, Spring 1995.

Advertisements

Comment on this article (or use the contact link above)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s