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Bent Street, Paddington
Bent Street, Paddington

Bent Street, Paddington, is one of the most curious streets in Sydney history. Although having only 32 houses in the street by 1920, this small street contained a cross section of Australian life during the time examined, from 1890 to 1920. The street contained shops, a coal depot, magistrates, landlords, labourers, miners, tenants, and all the other groups of people that inhabited the streets. In it also resided the first Australian Labor Party Prime Minister, John Christian Watson.

The street came into prominence when an article appeared in the Sydney Mail, 9 August 1916, p.12. It was inspired by the local ALP M.L.A., Mr. Osborne, who collected 29 portraits of soldiers from Bent and sent them Sydney Mail.

The album describes the named inhabitants of each house over the period from 1890 to 1920. In addition, the 29 pictures are named with a brief military biography attached to them. Where ever possible, they are located at the house in which the person lived.

The street numbering created a great deal of confusion amongst the information collectors. Where a dual number appears, this was the result of number confusion. For example, there never was No. 6 Bent Street but this did not prevent people from describing No. 8 as No. 6. In addition to that, in 1900, houses were built at numbers 23, 25, and 27. However No. 27 was further subdivided into three houses named "Osraston", "Matlock", and "Chellaston". This created its own confusion until the numbers were corrected in 1919. So the houses from 29 onwards have two numbers, the pre and post 1919 house number.

A full listing of the Bent Street Album may be found at:

Bent Street, Paddington Album Contents

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No. 20, Bent Street, Paddington
No. 20, Bent Street, Paddington 
 

Number – 20; Named Residents, 1890 – 1920

1890 - Varley, James

1890 Electoral Roll - 8602. Varley, James, household & 9045. Williams, Thomas, household

1891 - Donnan, John S

1891 Census - Donnan, John S

M - 1

F - 3

1892 - Roubion, Charles, waiter

1893 - Weller, Mrs

1894 - Rowledge, Henry

1895 - Rowledge, Henry

1895 Electoral Roll -

1896 - Rowledge, Henry

1897 - Don, JS

1898 - Don, JS

1899 - Don, JS

1900 -

1900 Electoral Roll -

1901 - Jarrett LR

1901 Census - Jarrett L

M - 4

F - 2

1902 - Jarrett, LR

1903 - Jarrett, LR

1903 Electoral Roll - 1516. Jarrett, Lorando Rudolph, draper [listed as 22 Bent St]; 1517. Jarrett, Lorando Rudolph, saddler[listed as 22 Bent St]; 1518. Jarrett, Rachel, home duties

1904 - Jarrett, LR

1905 - Jarrett, LR

1906 - Jarrett, LR

1906 Electoral Roll - 1094. Jarrett, Lorando Rudolph, draper; 1095. Jarrett, Lorando Rudolph, saddler; 1096. Jarrett, Rachel, home duties

1907 - Jarrett, LR

1908 - Batson, Thomas H.

1908 Electoral Roll - 99. Batson, Anabella, home duties; 100. Batson, Thomas Henry, policeman

1909 - Batson, Thomas H.

1909 Electoral Roll - 89. Batson, Anabella, home duties; 90. Batson, Thomas Henry, policeman

1910 - Batson, Thomas H.

1911 - Batson, Thomas H.

1912 - Batson, Thomas H.

1913 - Batson, Thomas H.

1913 Electoral Roll - 123. Batson, Anna Bella, home duties; 124. Batson, Thomas Henry, policeman

1914 - Batson, Thomas H.

1915 - Reynolds, John Robert

1915 Electoral Roll -

1916 - Reynolds, John Robert

1917 - Reynolds, John Robert

1918 - Brown, Alfred

1919 - Brown, Alfred

1920 - Wilson, Charles V