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Parker, Harold (1873-1962) was born in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, England, and migrated to Brisbane with his family in 1876. After attending the West End Boys’ School he studied drawing and modelling at Brisbane Central Technical College, and won several prizes for his carving.

He moved to London in 1896 where he studied sculpture, and from 1903-29 exhibited his own sculpture almost annually at the Royal Academy of Arts, London and was elected a member of the Royal Society of British Sculptors. His biggest triumph came in 1908 when his ‘Ariadne’ was acquired for the Tate Gallery.

Following his marriage in London in 1911 to Janet Robinson, Harold returned home to a state reception, but received little patronage. Although exhibitions of his work were held in Sydney and Melbourne, he was overlooked for major sculptural commissions he turned increasingly to painting. In 1937 he became a foundation member of the Australian Academy of Art, but in later life Harold withdrew from public life and was virtually forgotten. He died in Brisbane on 23 April 1962. The National Gallery of Australia, and the University Art Museum, Brisbane, have since acquired some of his work.  

Paulovich, Mary Anne Phillips (1824-76): Mary Anne Lyons was a young Irish girl who arrived in Australia about 1841. By 1843, she had married William Thomas Phillips, a son of the pioneering Phillips family of Paterson, New South Wales. She and William had seven children before she formed a liaison with Robert Hector Paulovich in the early 1850s and by whom she had a further 5 (perhaps 6) children. Mary Anne and Robert came to Brisbane about 1863, following periods of time in Sydney and Melbourne, and promptly established businesses. Mary Anne took the lease on Riverview House (later owned by Sir Joshua Bell) in Russell Street and by 1870 was advertising it for rent to gentlemen boarders and families. Archibald Meston, when writing about Brisbane in 1870, noted that:

On the bank of the river, at the foot of Russell Street, was a big stone house, kept by a Mrs. Phillips, who was Mrs. Paulovitch [sic], but was usually called by the name of her first husband. She had two handsome daughters, Kate and Lydia Phillips. In after years Lydia married Gore Jones, the present day barrister, whose father was the famous Gore Jones, a barrister of Brisbane’s early days. He will remember a little episode in which he and I were engaged when staying together in that year 1870. The butcher next morning asked Mrs. Phillips if two of her boarders had gone insane! It was supposed that he referred to Jones and myself!

In 1873, Mary Anne moved from Riverview House and took a lease on Acton House (now known as the Ship Inn Hotel). She ran the premises as a boarding house until March of 1876. She then moved to Hews Cottage in Grey Street which she renamed Bona Vista Cottage after the Phillips’ family property in Paterson. Mary Anne died at the cottage on the 27 September 1876. Buried in the same grave as Mary Anne is her daughter-in-law, Jane Phillips, who died in 1877.

Paulovich, Robert Hector (1820-74): Robert Hector Paulovich was a cosmopolitan character, described by Archibald Meston as “a tall dark man of distinguished appearance”. Robert was born in 1820 in the Dardanelles, now known as Turkey. His mother was English and his father was born on the coast of Dalmatia. At the time of his birth, Robert’s father Stephano was the British Vice-Consul to the Dardanelles. Robert Hector came to Australia in 1837 with his uncle John Rickards (his mother’s brother), his cousin and his brother Francis. Rickards established a number of drapery stores in the Hunter Valley area and in Sydney and young Robert was sent to manage the store and his uncle’s affairs in West Maitland and Musswellbrook. It is not known how he met Mary Anne Phillips, wife of William Phillips, a son of the well-known pioneering family of Paterson in New South Wales, but the couple formed a relationship. They left the Hunter Valley area in the early 1850s, residing for periods of time in Sydney and Melbourne before moving to Brisbane about 1863.

Robert started a general goods and drapery business advertising quality products at his premises in Queen Street very nearly opposite what was then the Town Hall. In 1870, he moved his business from Queen Street to South Brisbane opposite the Royal Mail Hotel at the corner of Stanley and Russell Streets. Sadly, Robert died on the 30 January 1874 at Acton House (now known as the Ship Inn Hotel), the lease of which his wife had acquired only a few months previously. His untimely death was a blow to his wife and family and was even reported in the Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser on the 3 February 1874 as he had been “very much esteemed here”. The headstone for his grave was erected by his son, also called Robert Hector.

(Thanks to Cathie Sherwood for the above information on the Paulovich family)

Peirson, Arthur Thomas (1867-1933): Arthur Peirson was born in Newcastle-on Tyne, England, in 1867 and arrived in Queensland as a teenager in 1885. He worked as a clerk in the prison service, rising to become the chief clerk of prisons by 1904. He was also appointed as superintendent at Boggo Road gaol, a position he held until his death in 1933. During this time he also served as Comptroller-General (1919-26). In addition to all this, he was a Major in the Queensland Military Forces and received the Victorian Decoration for long and distinguished service. He married Florence Drury in September 1897, and they had their only child, a boy named Duncan, in 1900. Peirson died one afternoon in May 1933 after a long illness. His funeral was well attended, with many government dignitaries paying their respects, including the Lieutenant-Governor.

Purchas, Edward (d.1878). From the Brisbane Courier, April 1878: 'The funeral of private E. Purchas, of B. Company, Q.V.R., at the South Brisbane Cemetery on Wednesday afternoon, was attended by a large number of his late comrades in the various branches of the force. The band of the company also mustered strongly, and the funeral was conducted with military honors. The deceased was one of the original cadets, and was subsequently transferred to B. Company. He died on Tuesday last, from fever, after an illness of five weeks.'