Edward James Barratt (my Great Great Grandfather) was born in Perth on 30 March 1871 and was the eldest son of James Enoch Barratt and Frances Elizabeth Digby. He grew up living in Perth with his mother, father and brothers and sisters (Florence, Albert, Harriet, Frederick, George, Frank and Edith).
With his father, James taking over the family nursery business (named Wellington Nursery), it was only natural that Edward would follow in his father’s and grandfather’s footsteps and would also work in the nursery.
At the age of 23, on 6 June 1894, Edward married Priscilla Masters in a double wedding with Priscilla’s sister Elizabeth Masters and William Frances Dewar. The two couples were married in St Matthew’s Anglican Church in Guildford.
His father’s eventual retirement in 1895 due to continuing ill health resulted in Edward and his brother, Albert officially taking over the family business and the name was subsequently changed to James. E. Barratt & Sons.
Over the years Edward and Priscilla went on to have nine children: Charles Victor Barratt (my Great Grandfather – born in 1895), Reginald Edward Barratt (1897), Myrtle Elizabeth Mildred Barratt (1900), Violet Constance Barratt (1901), Mary Priscilla Barratt (1902), Alan Keith Barratt (1906), Lionel James Barratt (1908), Alfred Dudley Barratt (1911) and Frances Maria Barratt (1913). Unfortunately their third child, Myrtle contracted diphtheria at the age of four and on 17 October 1904, passed away.
The continuation of the family business (for some reason or another) never went to plan for Edward and Albert. In late 1903 it was advertised that James E. Barratt & Sons were selling their property and the brothers were retiring from the business.
After the sale of the business Edward put the nursery behind him and began working for the Western Australian Government Railways. He remained in this position for the next 25 years of his life and apart from several years living in Subiaco, eventually moved to Charles Street in West Perth where the family remained for many years.
Edward lived through WWI and was one of many people who would’ve said goodbye to relatives who went to fight in the war. The following family photos were taken in 1915 at his sister, Florence’s residence in Stirling Street and not long after, several family members (some not pictured) left to fight for their country.
Edward continued living at his residence on Charles Street for the remainder of his life and enjoyed many hobbies including gardening. On 28 May 1937, at the age of 65, he passed away. He was buried in the Wesleyan section of the Karrakatta Cemetery and was laid to rest in the same grave as his little girl, Myrtle who had passed away years earlier.
- Historical photos courtesy of my Grandpa.
- Western Australian Births, Deaths and Marriages website (http://www.bdm.dotag.wa.gov.au/).
- Metropolitan Cemeteries Board website (http://www.mcb.wa.gov.au/default.php).
- Ancestry.com. Australian Electoral Rolls, 1903-1954 [database on-line].
- National Library of Australia’s Online Newspapers (The West Australian; Wednesday, 6 June 1934; page 1) http://newspapers.nla.gov.au/