18th April 2020

Please note: the new address for this blog is austbuttonhistory.com


Thanks Pat!

R. Pankhurt & Co, Sydney:

Apart from listings of British importers, the first button merchant (not manufacturer) listed within a Sydney directory was R. Pankhurst & Co in 1918.

Robert Pankhurst had been importing buttons from Japan since at least 1915. In 1921 the company became  propriety limited. By 1928 the firm was in liquidation.

Wise’s NSW PO directory.

In 1930 they reinvented themselves as “Panky’s”, who sold button covering and eyeletting machines.

Wise’s NSW PO directory.

Bathurst House, built in 1925, now demolished.

The Pankhurst’s new business. This ad was run from 1946-47 in many newspapers.

1950 Sydney telephone directory.

In 1919 Pankhurst was joined in the directory listings by W. Lesser, importers of button moulds and makers of buttons (i.e. covered buttons). Whilst there would be many button and buckle coverers, large and small, around Australia for many years, this firm had longevity, lasting until 1991.

Dun’s Gazette of NSW, 1919.

Sydney Pink Pages, 1960


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