26th November 2018

Mystery solved: Who were the manufacturers of buttons in Queensberry Street and also Flinders Lane (previously mentioned on the “Frederation to WW2” page)? The same company …

Bijou Ornaments Manufacturing Company: Melbourne

In 1938 this company was at 132 Queensberry Street, Carlton. In 1939 it became a propriety limited company with Nitalis Barski  and William Hoffman as directors.

The Herald (Melbourne) 25th October 1939.

They advertised as button manufacturers. In October 1939 they also advertised as located at 110 Flinders Lane, though they stayed at Queensberry Street until 1940. In 1942 they were in liquidation.

Victoria Gazette, 29th April 1942.

The company was revived as the “Bijou Button and Buckle Manufacturing Co.”  in the Leroy Buildings, Higson Lane (opposite 129 Flinders Lane) under the management of the widow (Elsie Gintz) of one of the listed liquidators (Charles Gintz. who died in 1943).

The Leroy Building in 1985, prior to demolition. It had been rebuilt after a fire in 1919 from a building existing prior to 1914.

Weekly Times 6th November 1946.

Weekly Times, 6th November 1946. Note the miss spelling of her surname.

Karel (Charles) and Eliska (Elsie) Gintz had fled to Melbourne from Czechoslovakia in 1939. As her husband became unwell and then died in 1943, she had gradually taken over management of the factory, despite not having previous experience. During the war the entire output diverted to military stock. In 1946 the article about her in The Weekly Times claimed there was only one other factory of this type in Melbourne at that time.

To see the whole article: https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/224423420?searchTerm=Mrs%20e%20gientz%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20%20&searchLimits=sortby=dateDesc


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