Location: Parramatta Female Factory
Surnames/tags: Naghten Parramatta_Female_Factory Parramatta
The PFF was built in 1818 in Parramatta on the north bank of the Parramatta River which at that time was an isolated location but gave the women the opportunity to wash clothes for profit & wash wool for spinning.
The PFF is currently within the grounds of the Cumberland Health Service. The Service, in the cause of providing care has renovated most of the buildings, even dismantling & amalgamating smaller buildings into more useful configurations. The Friends of the Parramatta FF have been minimally successful in stopping more recent wholesale renovations which has resulted in strained relations with the health service. The Friends of the PFF are permitted one “Riot Day” per year with NO entrance to any functioning buildings. This day commemorates the women’s riot of 1827 when they broke out of the gaol & sought food in the town.
When I arrived at 10am the Friends had stalls set up on the building veranda & the use of one minimally renovated lecture room to hold their stands & those of other organisations (eg State Records). I introduced myself to Beth Mathews & her fellow researcher Anne Mathews (no relation).
Anne email - firstname.lastname@example.org. We spoke of my ancestor Sisley Naughton who had been in the PFF from 1839 til 1843 and her daughters, who had accompanied her to Australia.
At 11am we were divided into groups & led on a tour around the grounds.
- The 3rd class barracks are still in existence but have been renovated into Mental Health offices.
- The main building with the clock tower (pictures) is an amalgamation of 2 earlier buildings, however, still shows the convict stonework.
- Some of the wall around the PFF is still standing however some of the capping stones have been removed allowing water into the stonework.
- A low commemorative wall has been erected by the Friends of the PFF.