John Frazer (politician)

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John Frazer

Member of the New South Wales Legislative Council
In office
3 November 1874 – 25 October 1884
Appointed bySir Hercules Robinson
Personal details
Born(1827-01-01)1 January 1827
Dromore, County Down, Ireland
Died25 October 1884(1884-10-25) (aged 57)
Edgecliff, Colony of New South Wales
Resting placeRookwood Cemetery
Spouse(s)Elizabeth Ewan
OccupationPolitician / Businessman

John Frazer (1827 – 25 October 1884) was an Irish-born Australian politician and businessman.[1]

The Frazer family vault in Rookwood Cemetery, Sydney.

Biography[edit]

Frazer was born at Dromore in County Down to John Frazer and Sarah Waddell. He migrated to New South Wales in 1842, becoming first a squatter and then a clerk. In 1847 he opened a grocery in Sydney. He married Elizabeth Ewan, with whom he had four children, in 1853.[1]

Frazer took his brother-in-law, James Ewan, into partnership in 1859. In the 1860s he was involved in land speculation and acquired several properties.[2] In 1869 he retired from the business of John Frazer & Co, with his former client and future brother in law, James Watson, joining the partnership.[1]

In 1862–1863, he was one of four prominent new shareholders that reformed the company operating the Fitzroy Iron Works at Mittagong.[3] After this venture failed, he was instrumental in interesting English capitalists in investing in the Mittagong works.[4] Frazer paid £10,000 to the bank in 1872, clearing the debts of the works. The new company issued its prospectus in April 1873.[5] It was controlled by English interests, with Frazer being a shareholder.

He was appointed to the New South Wales Legislative Council in 1874 and served there until his death on 25 October 1884.[2][6]

The last twenty years of Frazer's life were spent at Ranelagh, a three-storey, Italianate mansion in Darling Point Road, Darling Point. Ranelagh was demolished in 1967 and replaced with a high-rise apartment block also called Ranelagh.[7]

Frazer and the members of his family were interred in a sandstone mausoleum in Rookwood Cemetery. It was built in 1894 along the lines specified by Frazer before his death. The doors bear his initials and those of his wife: JF and EF.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Rutledge, Martha. "Frazer, John (1827–1884)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Melbourne University Press. ISSN 1833-7538. Retrieved 3 January 2018 – via National Centre of Biography, Australian National University.
  2. ^ a b "Mr John Frazer (1827–1884)". Former Members of the Parliament of New South Wales. Retrieved 10 June 2019.
  3. ^ Hughes, Hughes (1964). The Australian Iron and Steel Industry 1848–1962. Melbourne University Press. p. 7.
  4. ^ "The Fitzroy iron mines". The Empire. 20 July 1870. p. 2. Retrieved 9 May 2019 – via Trove.
  5. ^ "The Fitzroy iron works New South Wales". The Tasmanian. 12 April 1873. p. 15 – via Trove.
  6. ^ "Death of the Hon. Captain Frazer". The New Zealand Herald. XXVIII (8602). 25 June 1891. p. 5. Retrieved 12 April 2021.
  7. ^ "Ranelagh, Darling Point, Sydney, the place & its people". www.auspostalhistory.com. Retrieved 3 January 2018.