Monday, 1 June 2015

Theme Day - Stylish

Left: The bell for 133; Right: Mansions between Bent and Bridge Street in 1859 (SL-NSW)

Throughout the 19th century, Macquarie Street, on the eastern most ridge of the city, was regarded as the most fashionable of streets with stylish three and four storey terraces nestling along its western side.

Left: The attic windows on 133; Right: View north somewhere between 1867 and 1877

W. S. Jevons, an English economist, conducted a survey of Sydney housing which concluded that successful merchants, shopkeepers and professional men lived in mansions or villas, naming Macquarie Street as a favoured location. Politicians, and pastoralists established town-houses there. Medical Practitioners, attracted by the nearby Sydney Hospital (1816), also took up residence.

Left: The green plaque and detail at 133; Right: Looking south from Bridge Street during the 1870s

The first (stone) residence was constructd in Macquarie Street in 1819, for D'Arcy Wentworth. It was adjacent to the Hyde Park racecourse, and served for a time as the Parsonage for St James Church. It was demolished in 1888. Burdekin built his fabled, porticoed town-house there in 1842. It was demolished to make way for the connection of Martin Place through from George Street, all the way to Macquarie Street in 1933. Two of the original eight 1842 Horbury Terraces still grace the street, as does the mansion at 145, built for John Fairfax, of Sydney Morning Herald fame. For many years now, this mansion has housed the Royal Australian College of Physicians.

Left and Right: History House at 133 Macquarie Street today

There are not many of the original, stately mansions left. I have chosen to show you the mansion built in 1871 for George Oakes, politician and pastoralist, at 133. It is now known as "History House", and has been the home of the Royal Australian Historical Society since 1971. Its location would have enhanced its reputation, as it is opposite the Royal Botanic Gardens, and the very site where the Garden Palace burnt to the ground in 1881, returning the glorious view of the harbour to these most stylish of town-houses.

Lookin SW across Macquarie Street from the dome of the ill-fated Garden Palace in 1881, shortly before the fire.

This is a contribution to the City Daily Photo Monthly Theme Day. The Theme for June is "Stylish". To see what other CDP bloggers have chosen to represent the theme, click here.

23 comments:

PerthDailyPhoto said...

I was so hoping this would be your choice Julie. I absolutely drool over now and then images and almost, no.. always, buildings were more elegant and stylish in times long gone by. That's why for me restoration beats demolition every time.

William Kendall said...

You've chosen well- beautiful area, Julie!

Jim said...

I can't say I have specifically noticed this one but it is magnificent. Good choice for theme day.

Denton Harryman said...

wonderful choice an detail ... happy theme day

Merisi said...

Magnificently stylish, beautiful images!
Thanks for the history lesson, too.

Joe said...

A great selection of Style Julie. So many of the photos in this month's theme are historical in nature. I wonder if this says anything about our perception of style?

EG CameraGirl said...

Those were the days! It's wonderful they are still kept up so well.

EG CameraGirl said...

Those were the days! It's wonderful they are still kept up so well.

Revrunner said...

Great post!

VP said...

Well chosen and very interesting!

Tanya Breese said...

how beautiful and i love the side by side photos!

Tanya Breese said...

how beautiful and i love the side by side photos!

Birdman said...

Love your historical glance back at a period of intense style. Yes, the back and forth look added quite a lot.

Kate said...

Joe's comment above is most interesting. Are we more impressed with historical style or contemporary. I like both, I guess. There are terrific examples in both categories, and I like the history you provided in your post. I also like the idea of terraces on multiple levels.

Tahiti Daily Photo said...

Beautiful stylish area Julie

LOLfromPasa said...

Like your combination of present-day photos with the earlier ones. Looks so inviting and, yes, very stylish.

Small City Scenes said...

Wowee! Love the older pictures and the great information. Perfectly stylish.
MB

RedPat said...

Wonderful post! Beautiful style indeed!

Mark R said...

Gotta love that door-bell... simple but fascinating

Susan Bauer said...

I especially like the history that you provided.

Lynette said...

You’ve made a great Theme Day post. I'm glad you picked these for today. Thanks for the informative text.

Gunn said...

Great posting and great architecture.

raf said...

Love to see the blending of historical and contemporary styles side by side. Wonderful post, Julie, as always!