Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Pubs of the Goulburn St & Barrack St Intersection, Hobart

Here is something a little different to usual that I discovered whilst reading through one of noted Hobart historian Donald Howatson’s sensational books about the backgrounds of many of the streets across Hobart, Bellerive & Battery Point. They are well worth your time to seek out as they are all such a wonderful resource full of historical facts and interesting stories.

This is about the intersection of Goulburn Street and Barrack Street in central Hobart. Goulburn Street was well known for the large number of Pubs and Inns that have operated along the length of the street and the intersection with Barrack Street is particularly interesting as there have been pubs operating on all four corners over many of the early years of Hobart. In fact, some of the original buildings still exist in one form or another although none of them currently operate as licensed premises.

Starting on the north west corner of the intersection, was the home of the Black Swan which was the first of the pubs to be licensed. A very early pub, the Black Swan operated between 1822 and the early 1830’s. The building pictured above stands on this corner today but I’m not sure if there’s anything of the original pub remaining.

On the opposite side of the road, on the south west corner was the substantial two storey pub that was known as The Dog & Partridge. This pub was opened in 1836 and reportedly no expense was spared in making the building a very comfortable Inn. William Lanne, the last full blooded Tasmanian aboriginal man, died here in 1869. By 1871, the authorities were refusing to renew the Dog & Partridge’s license on the ground that there were two other pubs on the same intersection and that the Dog & Partridge was no longer required as a pub and the owner was then advised to let the Inn out for some other purpose. Fortunately, the majority of the two storey building (pictured above) survives to this day and is still being utilized.

Opposite the old Dog & Partridge site, on the south east corner of the intersection stood the old St Patrick Inn which was established in 1831. The St Patrick operated through till 1882 when its name was changed to the Goulburn Hotel. By the 1920’s, the premises were very run down and the licensing authorities threatened the owners with closure unless the owners undertook a program of refurbishment and rectified the situation. The owners immediately complied with the directive and carried out improvements and added extra rooms. The Goulburn Hotel continued to operate until recent times, well and truly outlasting its former competition on the other three corners of the intersection. The building today pictured above is the home of the Hobart Hostel.

The final pub is the youngest of the four pubs that graced the intersection. The Peacock Inn was opened in 1846 on the north east corner by its landlord, John Chard. Chard appears to have been a bit of a character as within months of the Peacock Inn opening, he was fined 10 shillings and costs for his assault on an unruly female patron who it appears he stuck with a pint pot, although he did claim that she had hit her head on the edge of a door after she fell. He must have been a bit of a entrepreneur as he also apparently staged cock fights on the premises for which he was subsequently charged for this. The Peacock Inn eventually closed in 1875 but the building has survived the ravages of time and still exists (see photos above) and appears in great condition.

This is a very interesting small part of Hobart and its history and it’s great that you can still go to the intersection and see the four buildings and can almost picture the patrons coming in and out after a rowdy drinking session.

Main Text & Information Source - 
“The Story of Central Hobart – Street By Street” – Donald Howatson 2015