Letter, Aubrey Hall to Margaret Hall, 1947-07-31

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Title: Letter, Aubrey Hall to Margaret Hall, 1947-07-31
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Storage location: State Library of Western Australia
Authors: Harold Aubrey Hall
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License: Public Domain Mark This work is free of known copyright restrictions.
Related people: Harold Aubrey Hall · Helen Margaret Wilson (née Hall)
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Keywords: H.M. Wilson Archives · letters


Extracts from a letter written by H. Aubrey Hall to his daughter H. Margaret Wilson.

D. by Mrs Wilson, of 36 Congdon Street, Swanbourne 14/9/64

31st July 1947

.............. I didn't know there was a memorial to your Grandfather Lazenby in Wesley Church, he was deserving of such as he was a Foundation Member of that Sect, one of their Lay Preachers and presented their first meeting place with seating accommodation.

He was a Master Builder and Architect from Yorkshire, where his father (your Great Grandfather) was a School Master. He came here with a fair amount of cash, bought land in what is now the heart of Perth, built 12 cottages and a large, comfortable brick home for himself in Murray Street, on a huge block of land running through to Wellinston St. (then wild bush) begot 7 daughters and 2 sons, then sold up and bought Cardup. (Now Byford, I think) opened a clay pit there, burnt bricks and built a two storey home, dammed a brook and built a Flour Mill, bred cattle, and pigs, had a garden, made butter and cheese, opened up a slate quarry and had great slabs of it worked up into shelves for the dairy, played the Cello himself and had all his children taught music. All the girls played the piano, one son the violin and the other the piano and violin. The family could produce such good music that an old retired Army Captain, who was under Wellington at the time of Waterloo and was Resident Magistrate of the Canning District (Captain Hester — Grandfather of Ted Hester whom you will remember) who was also a violinist, used to ride or even walk across from the Canning to Cardup for the pleasure of making music with them. When the elder son John Lazenby was old enough to take charge and most of the daughters were married, your Great Grandfather moved back to Perth home and was appointed Clerk of Works to the Town Trust (now the City Council) and had sole charge under the Government Arcitect of all the construction of the Town Hall — all those alcoves were then occupied as Market Stalls, of which he had daily supervision. Every week day after breakfast he made a tour of inspection, always attired in grey frock coat and pants, ditto bell topper and walking stick in one hand and yours truly trotting alongside holding the other hand.

He had charge of all municipal labour and any out-of-work could have a road making job at 1/- per diem.

His home must have been quite large, there was a front verandah where I used to gather hail stones, his dressing room where I used to watch him shave top lip and chin, somewhat a la Paul Kruger, an old English fashion devised for partaking of Holy Communion. He and Grandma doubtless had a bedroom. Mother and we children ditto, and like-wise two single daughters. Aunt Jinny (Mrs. Sam Rowe, Mother of Mrs. Jack Durack and Mrs Victor Harwood, whose husband was an officer killed in the 14/18 War) and Aunt Ellen who died single. There was a big kitchen-dining room after the fashion of an old English farmhouse, a sitting room with many books and on a round table in the centre of the room, a China white swan, containing pens, nibs etc., then there was a big store room with a long shelf carrying bottles of home made jam and marmalade. In addition there was another big room at one end of the house where Grandma Carried on a fairly large Dame's School which I, and Uncle Brnest, attended together with Annears and Ranfords and many others.

Grandma Lazenby was a Governess in England. Grandfather Lazenby was engaged to her when he left England, she followed after and was married in Perth from old Mr. and Mrs. Stone's house, the ancestors of Stone of Stone & Burt. I think Mrs. Stone was a cousin of Grandfathers through the Johnsons or Johnstones of Guilford, they again are related to the old West Australian Hardy family (not the de Grey and Katanning Hardies). Hampton late Under Secretary Crown Law Department, related to Governor Hampton married a Miss Hardy.

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Grandmother Lazenby was a Miss Wells and her mother (your Great, Great Grandmother) was a Miss Boyd, a descendant of Boyd Earl of Kilmarnock in Scotland who was executed for being right hand man to Bonnie Prince Charlie in the Stuarts cause in 1745. So if tartans become fashionable again, you should wear the Clan Boyd tartan.

Sorry if I bore you, but old time memories I find have run away with my pen, however when I am gone Judith and Alan and possibly Murray might be interested.

One thing I forgot to mention was how George Lazenby came to choose W.A. to migrate to. He had a brother whow as a Master Mariner* and owned his own ship, he came a voyage here whaling and George came with him for a health trip by Doctor's advise and liked the climate so much he later came here to settle.


Your ever affectionate old Dad.

* In the Hall possessions is a large photographic copy of an oil painting of this man, also his sister. (H.A.Hall thinks the sister's married name was Parker). The Master Mariner died in Singapore.

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This screen was erected to the glory of God and in memory of William Shakespeare Hall from funds provided by old friends and pioneers of the Roebourne district. He arrived in the district with the first exploring party in 1861–62. Returning in 1863 he founded Andover Station, the first station in the district on behalf of John Wellard. He served on the Roebourne church vestry almost continuously from the foundation of the parish in 1879 to his death in 1895.