W.E. Ward & Co

Privacy Level: Open (White)
Date: 1892 [unknown]
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australiamap
Surname/tag: Ward
This page has been accessed 212 times.

W.E Ward & Co was a successful fashion business of the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. Founded in Sydney, the business grew to have offices in Brisbane and Melbourne and had travelling representatives all over Australia. The business came under financial difficulty during the great depression and the offices were sold.

William Ward started the business W.E Ward, after he found a talent for retail business while working at Anthony Hordern's in Sydney. Initially at 44 Carrington Street, Sydney in 1892, in 1892 and 1893 he was trading as W.E. Ward at Foy's Chambers, Bond Street Sydney, as a "manufacturer of ladies costumes and jackets etc,"[1] Ward was importing fabric (drapery) and employing local machinists to manufacture garments. The business moved to 47 York street from 1899 and remained there until 1925.

In 1903 the business was incorporated as W.E Ward & Co. William was joined in partnership with his brother Herbert Ward. Brother Charles Ward was also registered in association with the business and was managing the books and family records indicate that sister Amelia Ward was also integral to the business. The trading addresses were given as 47 York Street and 8 Clarence Street, Sydney.[2] However the business had been trading as W.E Ward & Co as early as 1896.[3]

In 1911, the business' Melbourne Warehouse in Flinders Lane was destroyed by fire but they were able to salvage some of the water damaged stock and sell it to a clearance house.[4]

In 1926, the WE Ward & Co premises of 7 floors at 47 York Street were sold to Amalgamated Wireless Australasia (AWA). The business was still trading, now with a manufacturing facility at 2a Parramatta Rd, Camperdown.[5]


  1. Sands Directory 1892, Part 1, Page 11 [1]
  2. NSW State Archives; Business and Company Records 1903-1922; Item No: [2/8526]; Page No: 443; W E WARD & CO; Nature of Business: Mantle & costume manufacturers; Place of Business: 47 York Street & 8 Clarence Street Sydney [2]
  3. "DAILY IMPORTS." Daily Commercial News and Shipping List (Sydney, NSW : 1891 - 1954) 15 July 1896: 2. Web. 15 Sep 2019 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article157430459>.
  4. The Leader (Melbourne), 06 June 1911, Page 11; SALVAGE SALE [13.PDF]
  5. "Advertising" The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954) 23 June 1927: 18. Web. 15 Sep 2019 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article16383738>.

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