William Henry Shaw (1830-1896)

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William Henry Shaw, Manager at the Phoenix Foundry, 1870 to 1896, Ballarat Historical Society Collection (Cat. No. 034.81), held at the Gold Museum. Image Copyright: Sovereign Hill Museums Association
An ironfounder from Belfast[1], together with Robert Holden, Richard Carter and George Threlfall, William Shaw established the Phoenix Foundry in Ballarat. Shaw was manager, engineer and draftsman at the foundry. He also lectured on Mechanical Engineering at the Ballarat School of Mines.[2]



William Henry Shaw was born 27 July 1830 in Belfast (Ireland) to James Smith Shaw and Mary Shaw (nee Hunter).

For four years he was the managing engineer of the Doncaster Ironworks, and he had had a large foundry of his own in Sheffield.[3]

W. H. Shaw trained in the Phoenix Foundry, Belfast, before coming to the colonies.

William Henry Shaw, assisted by Hugh Reid (c1841-1901), taught Mechanical Engineering Drawing at the Ballarat School of Mines in the early 1880s.[4]

Most of those who established or managed foundries in Ballarat in either the pioneer years or later were British-trained and some of these had been miners temporarily. Carter, an original partner in the Phoenix Foundry, gained his experience in Blackburn, Lancashire. His associate, William H. Shaw, was an Ulsterman born in 1830 and trained under apprenticeship to an English founder. Coming to Australia in 1853, Shaw tried the diggings at Ballarat, Daylesford, and Blackwood before returning to Ballarat in 1855 to set up the general smith shop which was the antecedent of the Phoenix Foundry. [5]

William Henry Shaw was a manager at the Phoenix Foundry from 1870 to 1896.[6]

Thursday, 2nd June … CORRESPONDENCE.

20. From Jacob Thomas (Soho Works), Eyre street, complaining of having been “deprived of a residence area and improvements in a very extraordinary manner.” The letter set forth that, having, in September 1863, put a house and fencing on his registered lot 1, section 113, Mount Pleasant, and let the same to a tenant, “one William Shaw,” in March 1864, caused the land to be put up for sale, and “a Mr H. Walker, of the Survey Office,” recommended the same for sale. The sale was effected without any valuation for improvements – Shaw becoming the purchaser for £8; and the first notice complainant had of the sale or application for sale was a notice by the purchaser to give up possession. Complainant had therefore laid the case before the Board of Land and Works, and now before the Mining Board, praying for justice.
Members agreed that, as stated, the case was a very hard one.
Mr Eddy said the place was the only place where sand for founding purposes could be obtained, the purchaser being one of the Phoenix Foundry proprietors.
After some discussion, the matter was made an order of the day, that enquiry might be made as to whether or not the land had been reported on in the usual way.[7]
SHAW. Died on the 22nd inst, at Ballarat, Victoria, in the 68th year of his age, JAMES SMITH SHAW (third son of the late DR. SHAW, Cookstown, County Tyrone, Ireland), and father of WILLIAM HENRY SHAW, ESQ., Phoenix Foundry, Ballarat. Home papers please copy. [8]

Mr Shaw, of the firm of Carter & Co., Phoenix Foundry, was elected a member of the Chamber.[9]



Shaw.—On 23rd August, at his residence. No. 80 Armstrong street south, William Henry Shaw, manager Phoenix Foundry, aged 63 years.[10]

SHAW.-On the 27th October, at her residence, 128 Armstrong street south, Ballarat, Annie Eliza, beloved wife of the late William Henry Shaw (managing director, Phoenix Foundry Co.) in her 83rd year.[11]


John Shaw

--+ SON Shaw

--+ SON Shaw

--+ James Smith Shaw (c1804-1872) Mary Hunter (?-1858)

--.--+ Elizabeth Smith Shaw (c1826-?)

--.--+ Mary Ann Shaw (c1828-1858)

--.--+ William Henry Shaw (1830-1896) married Annie Eliza Cleeland (c1840-1932)

--.--.--+ Charlotte Shaw (1860-1860)

--.--.--+ Charlotte Shaw (1861-1916) married William Henry Cundy (c1861-1935)

--.--.--.--+ Harold William Ernest Cundy (1893-1946) married Betty UNKNOWN

--.--.--.--.--+ Susan Cundy (c1934-?)

--.--.--.--+ Mabel Alice Cundy (1895-?)

--.--.--.--+ Florence Annie Cundy (1897-?)

--.--.--.--+ George Cedric Cundy (1900.-1985)

--.--.--.--+ Edward Rex Cundy (1902-?)

--.--.--.--+ William Jonathon Cundy (1905-1911)

--.--.--+ James Cleeland Shaw (1862-1949) married Ellen Sharp

--.--.--.--+ Oswald James Shaw (1896-1953) married Phyllis Todd Lysle Jacobs

--.--.--.--.--+ CHILD Shaw

--.--.--.--.--+ CHILD Shaw

--.--.--+ John Cleeland Shaw (1864-1865)

--.--.--+ William Henry Shaw (1865-1957)

--.--.--+ Annie Eliza Shaw (1866-1867)

--.--.--+ Emily Shaw (1837-?)

--.--.--+ Francis Joseph Hudson Shaw (1868-1937) married Edith Hunt

--.--.--+ Annie Eliza Shaw (1869-?)

--.--.--+ John Minnis Shaw (1871-1929)

--.--.--+ Edwin Hunter Shaw (1874-1874)

--.--.--+ Blanche Alice Shaw (1875-1875)

--.--.--+ Alice Florence Shaw (1876-1876)

--.--.--+ Frederick George Shaw (1877-1954) married Florence Ada Croft

--.--.--+ Florence Evelyn Shaw (1879-1948)

--.--.--+ Edgar Hunter Shaw (1879-1975) married Beatrice Myrtle Towl (1890-?)

--.--.--+ Oswald Shaw (1880-?)

--.--.--+ Helena Mary Shaw (1882-1882)

--.--+ Emily Shaw (c1835-?) married Robert Holden (c1831-1911)

--.--.--+ Elizabeth Mary Holden (1855-?)

--.--.--+ Robert William Holden (1858-1861)

--.--.--+ Robert William Holden (1860-?)

--.--.--+ James Shaw Holden (1864-1865)

--.--.--+ Emily Holden (1867-?)

--.--.--+ James Samuel Holden (1869-?)

--.--.--+ Norman Shaw Holden (1873-1941) married Isabelle McWilliam (1877-1934)

--.--.--.--+ Neville Noel Holden (1904-1945)

--.--.--.--+ Horace H. Holden (1906-?)

--.--.--.--+ Olga Holden (1907-?)

--.--.--+ Hilda Evelyn Holden (1880-?)

--.--+ Jane Shaw (c1828-1913)

--.--+ Frances Louise Shaw (c1841-1917) married John Getty Craig (c1842-1900)

See also

Ballarat School of Mines

Mechanical Engineering

Phoenix Foundry


APPLICATIONS TOR PATENTS FOR INVENTIONS. ... John Anthony and William Henry Shaw, both of Ballarat, in the county of Grenville, engineers, for an invention of 'Improvements in Steam Engines. ... [12]


  1. Butters, Peter. "Ballarat's Phoenix Foundry built a great reputation." The Courier,16 June 2003. [Online.] Via The Courier (accessed February 9, 2012).
  2. Campbell, Sandra. "re. Phoenix Foundry Ballarat." rootsweb, Saturday, 31 July 1999. Via Ancestry.com(accessed February 9, 2012).
  3. The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1956), Saturday 20 January 1877, page 5.
  4. Ballarat School of Mines Annual Report, 1883.
  5. Cope, Graeme. Some Aspects of the Development of the Metal Trades in Ballarat 1851—1901. Thesis for the Degree of Master of Arts in the University of Melbourne August, 1971, pages 53-54. Via ExLibris http://dtl.unimelb.edu.au/view/action/singleViewer.do?dvs=1348616026957~598&locale=en_AU&VIEWER_URL=/view/action/singleViewer.do?&DELIVERY_RULE_ID=7&search_terms=SYS%20=%20000030848&adjacency=N&application=DIGITOOL-3&frameId=1&usePid1=true&usePid2=true (accessed 26 September 2012).
  6. <Williamstown Chronicle (Vic. : 1856 - 1954), Saturday 8 January 1876, page 3. Digital copy accessed via Trove; The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1956), Saturday 14 April 1883, page 12. Digital copy accessed via Trove.
  7. The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), Friday 3 June 1864, page 4. Digital copy accessed via Trove.
  8. The Argus, 30 November 1872. Digital copy accessed via Trove.
  9. The Star (Ballarat, Vic. : 1855 - 1864), Friday 8 March 1861, page 2. Digital copy accessed via Trove.
  10. Ballarat Star, 25 August 1896.
  11. The Argus, 28 October 1932.
  12. The Age, 04 March 1868.

Further Reading

External links

--Beth Kicinski 10:15, 19 March 2012 (EST)--CMuir 12:00, 1 March 2013 (EST)

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