Vera was the daughter of Ernest and Annie Baynes. Ernest was one of three brothers who at one stage had around 30 butcher shops in Brisbane as well as other business interests including a factory in South Brisbane producing barrels, saddles and vehicles. At this time, the family were living in “Tarong” at the Hampstead Road end of Blakeney Street, although at this time its frontage was on Westbourne Street.
Some photos of the original fence can be seen in another post in this blog, Westbourne St. 1930s Architecture. Baynes Street, further up Hampstead Road, takes its name from the family, possibly Joseph Baynes, a brother of Ernest.
This house was built around 1877 for accountant John Stephens and originally called “Rochemount”. He was at one stage the manager of ‘The Courier’ newspaper and ‘The Queenslander’ weekly magazine.
Both Ernest and Annie Baynes had been very active in the Brisbane Hunt Club in earlier days.
A paddock used by the Baynes family for cattle holding was sold in 1887 to form part of the suburb of Greenslopes.
Ernest was president of the RNA and until 1920 ringmaster of the annual Brisbane Exhibition and a grandstand was named for him in 1923. A biography of the Baynes brothers can be found here.
Being a flood plain, the West End/ Hill End area had soil that was very fertile, and many farms and orchards were established along the river bank. Farms in the area offered a fixed price entry for people to go and pick strawberries.
Smelling salts have been around since Roman times. They became very popular in the Victorian era. This was perhaps due to the fashion of wearing very tightly laced corsets which could bring on a “the vapours” or mild anoxia. Poor nutrition and the stench from the primitive drainage of the period could also have contributed to the popularity of smelling salts.