Beutrons from the 1950’s through to circa 1970.
Lots of new finds!
I‘ve altered a couple of pages of this blog. One page, on the suggestion of Debora Zinn, has been changed from “Wyeth, Besemers & Co” only, to “Covered Buttons” in general, and now includes information previously scattered over several pages.
The “Pre-Federation” page has also been updated. I was under the erroneous impression that the marking of some buttons as “British Made”, despite the inclusion name of an Australian tailor or company, reflected that idea of “Imperial/Commonwealth Preference”. (This was the philosophy/practice in trade and commerce of supporting Britain first, the Commonwealth second, then non-Commonwealth third.) However, it appears that if a large enough quantity of buttons was ordered, British button makers were happy to backmark the buttons with the Australian company/tailor’s name rather than their own name.
This leaves me with the issue of Beutron. An early advertisement mentioned “English Beutron Buttons”, and early “Wash Buttons” had “British Made” printed on the cards.
This was confusing as G.Herring claimed that all their plastic buttons were made in Australia.
So either, G.Herring felt proud of being “British” (this was just after WW2), or the above claims aren’t entirely true! Possibly in 1946 the company needed to import plastic buttons temporarily until their own production was ramped up after war time shortages.
Does anyone know?
After yesterday’s post Carol wasted no time in sending me her extensive collection of cherry buttons. (Of course! That’s what they are!)
Studying the manufacture of plastic buttons has opened up my eyes to the size of the plastic industry within Australia in the past century. I had know idea how large it was! I’ve become interested in vintage plastics and started to collect some in a small way. I purchased a set of Nally Ware canisters yesterday. I’ve mentioned this company on the ‘Federation to WW2’ page. These canisters probably date from the 1960’s. Whilst I love the older (1940-1950’s) Australian bakelite/plastic kitchenware, they have become very collectable and expensive! Also, they are often, because of their age, incomplete and or damaged. My Mum laughed to think that the 1960’s canisters which she was glad to get rid of because they were so dated are now desirable!
Another piece I’ve collected is this boxed measuring set that dates from around 1940. The brand is Duperite Harlequin, made by Moulded Products in Melbourne.
New tailor’s button:
E.J. & D. Curran; Bathurst
Edward J. Curran (originally Curren) was originally a cutter for W.G. Ward in Bathurst. He set up his own business, Curran and Taylor, in 1892, then E.J. & D. Curran (with his brother Daniel) in 1895, which was very successful.
This remarkable man went back to school, studying science and law, and worked as a Barrister in Sydney. He then studied medicine, and went on to establish the Opthamologly Department at Kansas University, USA, becoming known as “the miracle man of Kansas”, and was a pioneer in the area of glaucoma. He was also the Professor of Human Anatomy and Physiology at the Kansas University. Not bad for a tailor! He died in 1962.
Some new finds from Helen:
I have mentioned the plastics form of E.W. Tilley, which later became Tilley Plastics. They manufactured plastic buttons for the military during WW2. I have not as yet any identifable buttons of theirs, so I bought these cute Disney napkin rings from Tilleys. They date from 1945 onwards.
Carol has another Stokes & Martin uniform button in excellent condition to share.
The button belongs to the Victorian Volunteer Cadets Corps, which was agreed upon on 27th March 1884 and formally gazetted on the 23rd January 1885. In 1883 Stokes and Martin had signed all their estate over to trustees for their creditors. Perhaps they continued to trade for some time despite this, or else Stokes trading with his sons, or another button manufacturer, bought up and used pre-existing stock to make these buttons. However that may be, this button must date from 1884.