Employees of Michaelis Hallenstein & Co. Pty. Ltd. Back to Search

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Details

Location 1 Hopkins Street, Footscray, Maribyrnong - Victoria, Australia
Type memorial
Description

Grey Granite

Moritz Michaelis was born on 8 November 1820 at Lügde, near Hanover,Germany. In Germany, Michaelis met Rahel Gotthelf and they married on 14 April 1853, and in August they arrived at Port Phillip on the Falcon. Michaelis joined his nephew, Isaac Hallenstein, who in 1864 had bought a tannery at Footscray, Victoria. The families lived in St Kilda mansions, including Linden and Woonsocket.
The business Michaelis, Hallenstein & Co. grew rapidly, and in 1873 Isaac established a London branch and in Melbourne 780 hides were turned out a week. The company operated tanneries in Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and Dunedin, N.Z. The firm handled leather, grindery, saddlery, canvas, sports goods, and other general merchandise, with other subsidiary factories making finished goods in those commodities. They produced leather for soles and uppers of shoes, suitcases and upholstery. The firm won awards in Melbourne, Sydney, London, Paris, Amsterdam and Calcutta. It also pioneered the Australian glue industry and processed gelatine.
In old age, Michaelis spent increasing time at Romawi, the 4000-acre property on Lake Victoria, Gippsland, bought in 1889. There, after an unsuccessful attempt to produce wattle bark, he bred cattle and sheep and enjoyed visits from his family. In 1901 his health declined and his rheumatism worsened. He died at Linden, St Kilda, on 26 November 1902, survived by seven daughters and four sons.
Of particular note was Michaelis Hallenstein's participation in the local community by the founder's families. This seems to be partly a feature of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century in general but it is certainly true of the early Footscray industrial community. The families were involved in the local Rotary Club, the Technical College and the Hospital. This community involvement extended to the great sacrifices made by communities in WW1. This close involvement is recorded in a monument to 19 employees of the company who paid the supreme sacrifice in the First World War. Three of the names on the monument are from the founders' families, Michaelis and Hallenstein. This monument still stands on the edge of Hopkins Street on the Hopetoun Bridge.

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Built Not yet discovered
Opened Not yet discovered
Inscription

IN MEMORY OF
OUR FALLEN EMPLOYEES
WHO, IN THE GREAT WAR
1914 - 1920
NOBLY GAVE THEIR LIVES
FOR A JUST & RIGHTEIOUS CASE
(Names)

"BRAVE SPIRITS!
MOURNED WITH FOND REGRET"

ERECTED BY
MICHALEIS HALLENSTEIN CO PTY LTD.

Condition

Good

Names

Showing 3 people of interest from memorial

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MICHAELIS, Grant Moritz

Service number OFFICER
Lieutenant
2nd Field Company Engineers
AIF WW1
Born 23 Dec 1895

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HALLENSTEIN, Dalbert Isaac

Service number OFFICER
Lieutenant
5th Machine Gun Battalion
AIF WW1
Born 15 Aug 1893

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BYE, Bertie David Lester

Service number 31639
Gunner
13th Field Artillery Brigade
AIF WW1
Born Oct 1886

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