19-12-1884: Convent of the Good Shepherd, Oakleigh, Victoria.

The Argus, Melbourne, Friday 19th December 1884, page 5.

“A stained glass window, by Messrs. Ferguson and Urie, of Collins-street, has been erected in the church of the Convent of the Good Shepherd, at Oakleigh. The window, which is very large, is divided into four compartments, and in these, respectively, are representations of the Virgin, the Good Shepherd, Joseph, and John the Baptist. Above and below the figures are medallions containing emblems of the Passion, the seamless garment, the crown of thorns, &c. In the tracery is a quatrefoil containing and emblem of the descent of the Holy Spirit, and in the trefoils are emblems symbolic of the passion and death of the Saviour”.

The fate of this stained glass window remains a mystery!

OAKLEIGH Good Shepherd demolished 1886 [sml]

The Convent of the Good Shepherd was established at Oakleigh in 1883 and demolished in the 1980’s to make way for the Chadstone Shopping Centre. In 2011 the Archivist at the Good Shepherd, Fraser Faithful, indicated that there was no knowledge of a window of that description in existence. In 1931 a new chapel was being built so this may be when the windows were last seen. Another rumour suggests that there was an auction at the convent and no artifact was spared!

On the 25th March 2011, Fraser wrote:
“…The window you mention would have been installed in the original chapel building constructed 1883-1884 [the Convent opened at the end of 1883]. The original chapel was replaced in 1931 by the much larger building that we know today as the Oakleigh Chapel, and the original church was built around and became part of the main Convent Building. We have not been able to trace any information about the original 1884 window…”

National Library of Australia, Picture Australia, Convent of the Good Shepherd Oakleigh, Registration number MP4516, accessed 1st April 2012.

“The Convent of the Good Shepherd was built in 1883 at the corner of Dandenong Road and Castlebar Road next door to Chadstone (cottage), on land originally owned by speculator Patrick O’Farrell. O’Farrell, a solicitor, had purchased 55 acres of land in October 1855 from the Crown. One of his clients was the first Catholic Bishop of Melbourne, James Alipius Goold OSM, to whom O’Farrell sold the land in 1856 for £274.In 1881, in order to extend the work of the Convent at Abbotsford, Archbishop Goold invited the Sisters of the Good Shepherd to establish a convent and reformatory school on his land at Oakleigh (later known as Chadstone). In July 1881, Goold laid the foundation stone for the Convent, which was built with bricks made from clay quarried on the site and rendered with roughcast cement.The Convent of the Good Shepherd opened in December 1883, for the purpose of ‘training and educating poor and neglected children’. The Convent offered academic, domestic and commercial training for girls aged 11 to 13 who were deemed by the Children’s Court to be in need of care and it also provided care for older girls and women. The Convent was also remembered for the quality of its embroidery.The 19th Century complex of buildings included the Convent, Chapel, Reformatory School, Laundry and Priest’s Cottage. St Anthony’s Primary School, established for the children of the Parish in 1899, closed in 1979. The foundation stone for a new French Gothic Chapel, was laid by the Archbishop of Melbourne, His Grace the Most Rev. Dr. Daniel Mannix, in June 1930. The Chapel, with its graceful spire and clocktower, became a local landmark.In 1958 and 1963, parts of the Convent land were sold for development of the shopping centre. In 1984, 3.2 hectares of land, containing the Convent, Chapel and other buildings of the Good Shepherd complex, were sold. The following year, amidst much controversy, the buildings referred to as ‘a place of love, peace and shelter to countless numbers for over a century’, were demolished in order to extend the car park at Chadstone Shopping Centre”.

The detailed description indicates that it was a substantial window of four lights plus tracery glass above. Such a window would have cost hundreds of pounds c.1884 and I very much doubt it was destroyed. The question is, where is the window now?

Short link to this page: https://wp.me/p28nLD-Bi

© Copyright

13-08-1867: James Urie visits Tasmania on Ferguson and Urie business.

In August 1867, James Urie of the Melbourne stained glass firm ‘Ferguson & Urie’, traveled to Tasmania with a portfolio of the companies designs for ecclesiastical and secular stained glass. As of May 2013, over twenty-five Tasmanian buildings have been identified as having one or more extant stained glass windows by the firm. The newspaper article below contains a gold mine of clues for Ferguson & Urie windows erected in Tasmania and in Victoria and I have included my comments as to what have found on each clue.

The Mercury, Hobart Tasmania, Tuesday 13th August 1867, page 5.

 “STAINED WINDOWS – A few days since we stated that Mr. Urie of the firm of Ferguson, Urie, and Lyon, glass stainers, &c, Melbourne, was on a professional visit to Hobart Town. This gentleman is now in Launceston, and we were much gratified yesterday by inspecting a large portfolio of designs for church and other windows which his firm has executed or has in hand. Amongst the most elegant we may mention the chancel window of St. George’s Church, Queenscliff, the subject being taken from the Litany, whilst the side lights represent the twelve Apostles and the west window other emblems; chancel window of St. Peter’s, Wooloomooloo (Sydney), embracing nine events in the life of St. Peter; Roman Catholic Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, Geelong; St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church, Collingwood; St. Patrick’s Church, Duneed; the Melbourne Convent; the Presbyterian Churches at West Melbourne and Ballan; the Wesleyan Churches at Daylesford and Kent Town (S. Australia). They have also erected some very elegant memorial windows including one for the late Prince Consort at Kew; Rev. R. W. Needham, at Mount Gambier; Dr. Peck, at Sale; Judge Pohlman’s wife, and wife of Mr Stoddart both in Melbourne. We have already referred to Dr. Moore’s at New Norfolk, and the two windows in St. John’s, Launceston. One of the most elegant windows is in the house of Mr. George Stevenson, at Toorak; it represents the four seasons with figures of Art, Science, Agriculture, and Commerce, with Faith and Hope, coat of arms, and crest. This window cost £250. This firm also supplied a staircase window for the new mansion of the Hon. R. Q. Kermode at Mona Vale, but it has been decided to substitute one much more elaborate. They are also to fit up two windows for the new Wesleyan Church of this town – one at either end, which will be very handsome. Several private homes in this town, and a large number in Victoria, have been ornamented in this way, and no doubt the practice will extend when it is known how skilfully the art is carried out by Messrs. Ferguson & Co.”


1. Queenscliff, Victoria, St Georges, All windows extant.
Related posts: 22-02-186429-01-1866 > 12-02-1881 07-04-188230-12-1893

2. Wooloomooloo, Sydney, NSW, St Peter’s (Darlinghurst), now part of Sydney Church of England Girls Grammar School.
Related posts: 1867: St Peter’s Anglican Church, Woolloomooloo, Sydney, New South Wales.

3. Geelong, Victoria, St Peter & Paul Catholic. Three light principal east window.
Related post: 13-08-1867: St Peter & St Paul, Geelong, Victoria.

4. Collingwood, Melbourne, Roman Catholic (St Joseph’s) destroyed by fire in 2007.
See: 1863: St Joseph’s Catholic Church, Collingwood, Victoria.

5. Duneed, Victoria, St Patrick’s (Mt Moriac) foundation laid in 1858. Ferguson & Urie east window erected in 1866 but was destroyed my a massive hail storm in 1887. The church was rebuilt in 1950’s and sold at auction in February 2017..

6. Melbourne, Victoria, the “Melbourne Convent”. This is likely to be the “Convent of Our Immaculate Lady of Mercy” in Nicholson street Fitzroy. My correspondence with the Convent has revealed nothing.

7. West Melbourne, Presbyterian. Dismantled in 1935 and re-erected as St Andrews at Box Hill in 1936. It contains the original F&U windows except for one which went to the Camberwell Church on Riversdale Road.
Related posts: 27-04-1935

8. Ballan, Victoria, Presbyterian (St Paul’s). All windows are extant.
Related posts: > 22-07-1866 > 28-07-1866 > 13-08-1867

9. Daylesford, Victoria, Wesleyan. Only small ‘stock’ windows in the porch exist in poor condition. See photos <here>

10. Kent Town, South Australia, Wesleyan. Nothing further known.
Related posts: 26-10-1864

11. Kew, Melbourne. The Prince Consort window at Holy Trinity is extant and recently restored.
Related posts: 08-06-1881

12. Mount Gambier, Christ Church, Rev Needham memorial window and others are extant.
Related posts: 02-11-1867

13. Sale, Victoria, St Paul’s Anglican Cathedral. Dr. Peck memorial window is extant.
Related post: 29-01-1867

14. Melbourne, Pohlman and Stoddart memorial windows.
Nothing found in regards to the Pohlman window but the Stoddart window exists.
Related post: South Yarra Presbyterian 1867


Judge Robert Williams Pohlman (1811-1877): Biography | Obit 1877 | Funeral | Obit 1878 His funeral was in St Stephen’s in Richmond and he was buried in the Melbourne General Cemetery on the 8th Dec 1877. He was married twice. His second wife, Mercy Clifton Bachelor died of an embolism at age 26 on the 21st January 1876 only a couple of weeks after giving birth to a stillborn daughter on the 5th of January 1876. He only had one daughter to his second wife named Annie who married Navy Commander Frederick Owen Pike at St John’s in Toorak on the 27th December 1893.

This would mean that the stained glass window would have been a memorial to his first wife “Eliza” who died at Richmond on the 11th Feb 1856.


This is James Dickson Stodart (c1825-1867), Mayor of Prahran 1864/65 and councilor 1858/59-1859/60, 1863/64-1864/65.

Arrived from Edinburgh in 1853. Was later a financial agent for Cornish & Bruce railway contractors. See: Yarra Presbyterian 1867

An active member of the Scotch Presbyterian Church in Punt Road South Yarra, where his memorial stained glass window resides.

He died on Wednesday 12th June 1867. The window has been found at the South Yarra Presbyterian Church See: http://wp.me/p28nLD-2I3.

15. New Norfolk, Tasmania, St Matthew’s, Dr. Moore memorial window is extant.
Related posts: 04-03-1882

16. Launceston, St John’s: The window is extant but no longer in its original position. The canopy glass above the main three lights no longer exists but an original design for the window shows that it contained the descending Dove and the symbols for Alpha and Omega.
Full details see  post: 25-09-1866

17. George Stevenson’s house at Toorak was named “Trawalla” and is located at 22 Lascelles Avenue Toorak. Window is extant.

18. Ross, Tasmania, Kermode’s Mona Vale Mansion. This window still exists. Images are shown in various historical books written in the last 30 years.

19. Launceston, Wesleyan, (Pilgrims Uniting), window facing Patterson street is extant but nothing seen in the opposite end. Gavin Merrington from Hobart has confirmed that a wheel window exists above the organ loft.

Also see: 07-08-1867: Decorative Art. James Urie sojourning in Tasmania.

Other related posts: 03-03-1868 , 29-01-1866, 20-06-1867, 29-04-1864,

Short link to this page: http://wp.me/p28nLD-98