This Essay Was First Published In Brian Dickey (ed)

This Essay Was First Published In Brian Dickey (ed)

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This essay was first published in Brian Dickey (ed), William
Shakespeare’s Adelaide 1860-1930, Adelaide, Association of
Professional Historians, 1992, pp.27-41, and is reprinted here with
minor changes.
The original volume aimed to examine a variety of aspects of the life
of the City of Adelaide during the years when William Shakespeare was
an inspector on the staff of the City Corporation.
This essay was based on a history of Faulding commissioned to mark the
150th anniversary of the founding of the business in 1845. The history
of the business was published in 1995 under the title, The Faulding
Formula: a History of FH Faulding & Co Ltd.
Storekeepers
or
Health Professionals
0 true apothecary! Thy drugs are quick Romeo & Juliet V iii 119
Peter Donovan
William Shakespeare’s Adelaide was characterised by an increasing
refinement as the city and its inhabitants took on the trappings of a
thriving metropolis. Those city dwellers blessed with financial
success or positions of authority sought respectability, social
leadership and a measure of exclusiveness which they fostered through
institutions such as the Adelaide Club, established in 1863, and
attendance at St Peter’s College.1
At the same time, others sought positions of authority, influence and
a measure of exclusiveness through occupations that they hoped to
change into professions. Lawyers and clerics had long been considered
members of elite professions, and others sought a similar
exclusiveness. Architects lobbied for the recognition of the
professional nature of their vocation2, and so too, did many in the
nascent health professions. The medical practitioners had better
fortune than the architects, but still, it was 1889 before doctors
were required to be registered, and 1913 before the first legislation
was enacted to regulate the work of dentists.3
Pharmacists belonged to another group, closely allied to others
working in the health field, who sought legal recognition and
protection from those they considered to be non-qualified
practitioners. Just as medical practitioners sought to distance
themselves from ‘quacks’, so the trained pharmacists sought to
differentiate themselves from those they disparagingly described as
storekeepers, in general, and ‘grocers’ in particular. Parallel with
the pharmacists’ concern to establish a distinct identity was that of
the small number of manufacturing pharmacists who strove to
distinguish themselves from manufacturing grocers.
None of the emergent professions received encouragement from those
representatives of the community in parliament who argued that any
legislation would amount to restrictions on trade and free choice.
Thus, the increasing regulation of their activities which led to the
de facto recognition of the several health professions grew rather
from the perceived need of governments to protect members of the
public from dangerous situations and unscrupulous activities of
charlatans, rather than any wish to encourage a restriction of free
enterprise or the growth of exclusive professions.
The story of the emergent pharmacy profession can be focussed almost
exclusively on William Shakespeare’s Adelaide because success in
retail pharmacy has always been dependent upon a critical mass of
population, and the greatest number of colonial pharmacists practised
in Adelaide or the larger towns. The Pharmaceutical Society, which
championed the campaign for professional status, was formed in
Adelaide and here it carried on the campaign for registration. Here,
too, at the hub of the colony’s transport and trade network, the
pharmaceutical wholesalers established their factories and warehouses.
Indeed, much of the story can be focussed on two companies, Bickfords
and Faulding, which helped establish both retail and wholesale
pharmacy in South Australia.
The self image
The struggle by pharmacists for legal recognition in South Australia
represented a local example of the long struggle for recognition of an
increasing number of health professionals. The development of modern
pharmacy in Britain, from which that of Australia derived, had been a
tortuous thing involving the struggle of grocers, apothecaries,
physicians, chemists and druggists, all of whom contended for
recognition against encroachments from the others. King James I marked
the distinction between apothecaries and grocers in 1617 when he gave
the former the exclusive right to dispense physicians’ prescriptions.
However, the apothecaries continued to push for a greater share of the
physicians’ work, even to the extent of visiting the sick and
themselves prescribing medicines. In 1815 the Apothecaries’ Act gave
the Apothecaries’ Society the right to license their members to
practice medicine in England and Wales.4
While apothecaries sought closer identification with the physicians,
druggists and chemists remained identified with grocers: the druggists
as wholesalers of raw and unprepared drugs and the chemists as
preparers of chemical and mineral drugs requiring the use of fire. As
the apothecaries abandoned the preparation of medicines, the chemists
and druggists moved to fill the void and by the early nineteenth
century practically had a monopoly on the preparation and sale of all
drugs and medicines. In order to protect this position they formed the
Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain in 1841, a year after William
Bickford opened the first retail pharmacy in Adelaide. That same year
the apothecaries changed their designation to that of general
practitioners of medicine.
Early retail pharmacy in Adelaide
William Shakespeare arrived in South Australia with his parents in
1849 at a time when the colony’s pharmacists were concentrated in
Adelaide. There were few country towns of much significance and in
them demands for patent medicines was satisfied by general
storekeepers.
William Bickford, who had worked as a veterinary surgeon before
migrating to Adelaide, became South Australia’s first pharmacist. He
arrived in the colony on 15 February 1839 and before the year was out,
established himself as a pharmacist in premises in Hindley Street. An
advertisement in the South Australian Register on 5 September 1840
proclaimed that he had for sale, ‘Drugs, Chemicals, Snuffs, Cigars,
India curry powder, Pickles and sauces, Linseed oil and turpentine, A
good selection of perfumery, Genuine horse and cattle medicines ...’
Bickford died in 1850, but his wife, Ann Margaret, continued the
business by engaging a qualified chemist named Hutton to look after
the compounding and dispensing of medicines while she attended to its
commercial side. The business flourished under this remarkable woman,
and in 1863 with her two sons as partners, the business became
Bickford & Sons.5
William Paxton, another early pharmacist, established his
`Apothecaries Hall’ in Hindley Street, though he was later to find
considerable wealth as a shareholder and director of the South
Australian Mining Association, which gained access to the rich copper
lode at Burra in 1845, and later still as a pastoralist. Francis Hardy
Faulding who migrated to Sydney as a ship’s surgeon proceeded almost
immediately to Adelaide where he arrived on 19 May 1842: he opened his
pharmacy at 5 Rundle Street three years later.
When Bickford opened his dispensary, pharmacists required few
particular skills so long as they had a book of formulations: almost
another twenty years passed before the first British Pharmocopaea was
published in 1864, and an additional three years before Lister’s
article appeared in the Lancet in 1867 which helped to change
attitudes and ideas about infection and disease. Modern chemotherapy
is little more than a century old if Pasteur is considered a pioneer:
it is little more than fifty years old if the discovery of antibiotics
is taken as a benchmark. The drugs in use in Shakespeare’s day were
modest preparations that were based upon simple, naturally occurring
compounds. The pharmacies differed little from grocers. When
announcing the opening of his business, in May 1845, Faulding offered
to compound and dispense prescriptions and family recipes, to provide
sheep and cattle medicines, along with perfumes, spices and ‘other
sundries’. He also offered to provide ship and other medicine chests.6
The practice of pharmacy was not yet a clearly defined profession when
William Shakespeare became Inspector of Weights and Measures and a
measure of confusion remained throughout the rest of the nineteenth
century. Shakespeare could have been aware of this as he visited
pharmacists’ premises in the city to ensure the accuracy of their
scales against his proof set of weights. Early pharmacist, James
Young, who first worked in country areas in a form of apprenticeship,
recalled some of the practices current in the 1870s:
Chemists in the province were few, and almost all of British
nationality. The larger number comprised locally trained men. A few
seemed to have merely blown in. The training comprised those who had
been in the wholesale and some apprenticed. Some were sons of
chemists, others sons of doctors ...
Chemists ... prescribed, bandaged and extracted teeth. But that not
being enough to support a pharmacy, there was recourse to auxiliary
business - books and periodicals, confectionery, stationery, pipes,
tobacco and snuff. With these one could make a living and still hold
public respect as ‘The Chemist’. In Adelaide conditions were about the
same: less veterinary and dentistry work and more doctor’s
prescriptions, but also less practical pharmacy, the latter probably
owing to the propinquity of the wholesale.7
Along with confusion about their role, there was minimal regulation of
chemists. The Poisons Act of 1862 which called for little more than
proper labelling of listed poisons, was the first piece of South
Australian legislation to regulate chemists’ conduct. For all that,
discussion on the proposed poisons legislation of 1862 prompted what
may have been one of the first meetings of pharmacists in South
Australia, in the face of what was expected to be tough legislation. C
S Hill, writing in 1894, recalled the occasion:
The Parliament of the day ... would, if left to themselves have made
it difficult to have purchased ought else than Epsom salts at a drug
shop, and the meetings of chemists’ held in Faulding’s store in
Clarence Place, with the late Mr. Cain as chairman, were for the
purpose of moderating the zeal of the legislature and petitioning to
be allowed to sell something without a witness. Had they but suggested
that the scheduled poisons should only be sold by recognised (or
registered) chemists, what a world of trouble would be saved to us.8
The Bill had been introduced in 1861, but thrown out. The opposition
to it was rather confused, but generally concerned with the
restrictions on trade that might be introduced. This opposition seemed
of little consequence during the intervening twelve months when a
child died after taking poison that had been sold in an open and
unlabelled cup.9 Even under the new law, the restrictions on chemists
were minimal. The Act named only four poisons, and simply insisted
upon the use of appropriate labelling and prohibited sales of these
poisons to persons younger than seventeen years old.
Early manufacturing and wholesaling
The number of pharmacies in Adelaide grew along with the population of
the city. In the 1870s, J H Young recalled, in addition to several
retailers, there were then three wholesalers in Adelaide - Bickford &
Sons and Goddard & Co. in Hindley Street, with Faulding & Co. in
Rundle Street -though he also noted that ‘A little dabbling in this
trade [ie making up drugs] was indulged in by every [retail] chemist’.10
Despite Young’s throwaway claims, this distinction between retail and
manufacturing pharmacists clarified during the latter part of the
nineteenth century. It was led by two of the colony’s pioneer
pharmacists. Faulding & Co. became the first wholesale pharmacist in
South Australia. New premises were purchased for this purpose in
Clarence Place behind the Rundle Street store in 1845. Five years
later Faulding had developed a number of proprietary lines, including
‘Faulding’s anti-billions aperient pills’, pectoral pills and
‘Faulding’s celebrated ointment for ring worm.11 Seven years later his
business was colony wide, distributing more than drugs and
preparations devised by Faulding:
Surgeons, Druggists, and Country Storekeepers supplied from one of the
largest and best assorted stocks in the Colonies with Genuine Drugs
and Chemicals, Patent Medicines, Surgeons Instruments, Stoppered
Bottles, Fixtures, and Druggist Sundries of every description.12
Faulding also supplied leeches caught in the Torrens which were used
for blood-letting.
All pharmacists compounded scripts and most ordered their stocks from
suppliers in England. The auctioning of speculative cargoes from time
to time also gave many pharmacists the opportunity to obtain
ingredients from which to compound simple remedies. Bickford & Sons
turned to manufacturing and wholesaling in 1862 when William began
travelling through country South Australia selling the firm’s
cordials. The wholesale side of Bickford & Sons became increasingly
important and eventually the retail side was relinquished. Bickfords
moved into new premises on the corner of Currie and Leigh Streets in
1870, when there were five indoor staff.
Faulding’s business also expanded greatly. On 18 March 1861 Faulding
took Luther Scammell into partnership. Like his partner, Scammell had
trained as a surgeon in England, but after his arrival in Adelaide on
17 September 1849 established himself as a retail pharmacist. After
Faulding died in 1868, Scammell, who had earlier assumed day-to-day
responsibility for the firm, encouraged its expansion. Success
demanded that it move into a new warehouse built on the corner of
Clarence Place and King William Street in 1874, while manufacturing
continued in the Clarence Place building.
Faulding also concentrated on the manufacturing and wholesaling side
of the operation, though more by necessity than choice. Although in
the latter 1880s the firm had as many as eight retail shops, three of
them in the city, by 1888 all of the business was virtually owned by
the Bank of Adelaide. This was a result of the disastrous speculations
of Luther Scammell, particularly in the pastoral property Ediacara,
near Lake Torrens, which suffered because of prolonged drought. After
trying unsuccessfully to dispose of the enterprise to Melbourne
interests, the Bank agreed that the eldest Scammell sons might
purchase the manufacturing and wholesale side of the business, but
insisted that the retail shops be sold. The younger Scammells assumed
control of the business on 1 January 1889, but retained the Faulding
name.
The Pharmaceutical Society
Until the latter years of the nineteenth century, few pharmacists in
South Australia could be considered professionals to the extent that
they could claim to have studied pharmacy. These few had gained their
qualifications in England. William Main, one of the pioneer
pharmacists had studied pharmacy in England and gained his certificate
in 1846 before migrating to Adelaide in 1849 and establishing a
business in King William Street.
A few sons of colonials were sent to England for training. Harry
Bickford went to London in 1859 and studied for three years before
qualifying as a pharmacist. The two younger Scammells were sent to
London in 1876. Both passed the examinations of the Pharmaceutical
Society and Luther Robert Scammell later became a Fellow of the
Chemical Society of London. The brothers returned to the Adelaide
business in 1879. Other colonials practised a form of apprenticeship.
James John Henry Young first worked for a pharmacist in his hometown
of Burra. He then undertook training in Adelaide, and worked for two
years as a dispenser in the Adelaide Hospital before he returned to
the country to practise on his own account.
Because there were so few professional pharmacists in South Australia,
pharmacy remained a challenge during the 1880s. As James Young
recalled:
There were more people and a more diversified taste. There was not a
greater distribution of money generally, but more attractive trade for
such as there was. In pharmacy itself, besides that great alteration
of aspect caused by tablets and other concentrated forms of dosage,
and increased imports from England, there were also French and German,
while large volumes poured in from America. It began, I think, with
McKesson and Robbins, then Parke Davis, Stearns, and Whitall, Tatum
and Co. Some English and American firms opened agencies in Sydney,
which then, and up to Federation, was a free trade port.
This increased exposure to international influences and the growing
number of new patent medicines made it imperative for pharmacists to
remain abreast of contemporary developments and to lobby for a measure
of protection. Young referred to the 1880s:
It can be said that pharmacy began to suffer in this decade, not a
blow, but a permanent injury. Wholesale grocery, a trade fostered by
the chemists in early days, now became independent of them. They made
their own supplies, and with the much-increased list of patents and
proprietories they pushed their wares into general stores.13
In response to the threats to their calling during the latter years of
the nineteenth century, and following the lead of colleagues in other
colonies, South Australia’s pharmacists agreed to form themselves into
a professional association. The collapse of the economic boom in South
Australia in the mid-1880s increased competition from grocers and
other storekeepers and underscored the need to organise and to press
for professional recognition, though it appears that the precise
timing of the initiative was determined more by the need to send
delegates to a proposed intercolonial pharmaceutical conference.14
There were already pharmaceutical societies in Victoria (1857), New
South Wales (1876) and Queensland (1880), when the South Australian
pharmacists finally decided to establish their own association. The
idea had been raised in 1858, soon after the foundation of the
Victorian society. However, the benefits of such an organisation were
then not obvious and it was August 1885 before William Main convened a
general meeting to discuss issues considered important to pharmacists.
These included the prices of medicines, education for pharmacists and
the coming conference. As a first step those attending the meeting
agreed to found the Pharmaceutical Society of South Australia. W.H.
Harrison, a Rundle Street retail pharmacist, was chosen as the first
president with Main as the secretary and registrar. The first of the
objects of the Society was to ‘unite the Chemists and Druggists into
one recognised and independent body, to protect their general
interests and to advance the science and art of Pharmacy’. Those
professing to be pharmacists welcomed the new society and within
twelve months it claimed 105 members.
The society was primarily for retail pharmacists, but Faulding, now
firmly established as a wholesaler, gave it great support through
Luther Robert Scammell, one of the few qualified pharmacists in South
Australia. Indeed, in March 1886, Scammell and Charles Fryer were
appointed to a board of examiners to help ensure that prospective
members met a minimum standard. Later that same year the first
intercolonial conference of pharmaceutical societies was held in
Melbourne. Luther Robert Scammell was one of the two South Australian
delegates, while the other, W.H. Sowter, the society’s auditor, was a
Faulding employee.
Pharmacy Act
Once the society was established the members moved to have the
professional standing of pharmacists recognised by lobbying
government. In November 1888 they presented the government with a
petition signed by eighty ‘members of the medical profession and
dealers in chemicals and drugs’ calling for the appointment of a board
to register pharmacists. A Bill, largely drawn up by the society and
based on the Victorian Act, was introduced into the South Australian
parliament on 7 November 1888, ‘to establish a Pharmacy Board, and to
amend the law relating to the sale of poisons’.
There was no opposition to the notion of providing greater controls on
those preparing and dispensing prescriptions, but there was some
concern about the effect on storekeepers who sold patent medicines:
the Bill did not proceed and was discharged on 5 December. A similar
bill was introduced three years later on 6 June 1891. William Copley,
Commissioner of Crown Lands, who introduced the new Bill, made the
point that ‘It only provided that a man who pretended to be a chemist
should have some qualification before practising as a dispenser. It
did not interfere with any other branch of trade, because storekeepers
and tradespeople who sold various kinds of medicines of a patent
character-and a simple nature did not act as dispensing chemists … ‘15
Speaking in support of the Bill, Dr Sylvanus Magarey observed that,
‘We have a number of intelligent men in the colony acting as chemists,
but there were some amongst them who were without the training
necessary to render them competent to pursue their calling’.16 Like
its predecessor there was no opposition to the essential principle of
the Bill though some members quibbled about the need to have a board
of seven. Friedrich Krichauff observed in the Legislative Council that
‘There was hardly more than seven qualified chemists in Adelaide’. The
Bill received royal assent on 20 October 1891. Nevertheless
pharmacists continued to retail a broad range of goods and in this
respect differed little from many other storekeepers: but they had
gained the exclusive right to compound and dispense doctors’
prescriptions.
Manufacturing chemists
While the role of retail pharmacists changed little during the decades
succeeding the 1891 Act, that of the manufacturing pharmacists
continued to evolve and, as it became increasingly specialised, it
ensured that the retailers would retain vestiges of the grocer or
shopkeeper image that they had tried so hard to shed.
Throughout the nineteenth century the success of the colony’s
manufacturing chemist Bickford & Sons was largely founded on that of
its cordials, though it later became renowned for its coffee essence.
Faulding & Co., on the other hand, became renowned for its Solyptol
range of products. Both manufactured pills and simple remedies as well
as a large range of grocery items such as baking and curry powders. In
all of these there was fierce competition between the two companies.
Faulding & Co. pioneered the distillation of eucalyptus oil in South
Australia in 1887 when the firm erected a plant on the Punyelroo
property of Ernest Arthur Scammell on the River Murray about five
kilometres downstream from Swan Reach. Under the agreement of 1 June
1887, Ernest provided the site for the plant, which Faulding was to
supply, and he also received a salary of 30s per week.
Ernest was soon hard-pressed to meet Luther Scammell’s incessant
demands for oil, particularly in the face of competition from
Bickfords. Luther Scammell outlined the problem in a letter to Ernest:
Saturday’s Register contained a long advertisement of Bickford’s
Eucalyptus Oil, which they announce they are manufacturing in large
quantities and have large monthly orders from England for. Of course,
it is a lie, but it is curious that sometime back they got two wine
bottles of E. Oil from us, which they requested we should close with
our label & we imagine that was got to send to H.B. who was in England
... This added to the report of a shipment of 28 cases by Cummings to
London makes me think it would be a good thing for you to go down to
Kangaroo Island & see what they are doing & how they work it.17
Ernest continued to supply oil to the firm until about 1896 when he
quit the property. Soon afterwards farmers on Kangaroo Island began to
distil the oil and the firm received most of its supplies from there.
This eucalyptus oil became important to Faulding. The primary
derivative, eucalyptol, formed the basis of another product, the
antiseptic, which was marketed as Solyptol. The firm first made this
in the late-1880s in the small laboratory adjoining the Clarence Place
warehouse. Luther Robert who first produced the antiseptic coined the
name from the contraction of ‘soluble eucalyptus oil’.
The products of both manufacturing chemists were simple. Their
manufacture required little more skill than the ability to read and
mix the formulations of the head chemist. In 1884 Faulding employed
twenty-eight men and six girls in its Adelaide factory and warehouse.
The girls were used in the finishing department in labelling and
packing of items: their wages ranged from 12s 6d to 10s per week.18 In
1899 the girls worked 44.5 hours each week between 8:30 am and 5:30 pm
while the men worked a 47.5 hour week between 8:00 am and 5:30 pm.19
By this time pill-making had become an important part of the Faulding
factory. A catalogue of October 1900 affirmed that ‘This branch of our
Australian Business has increased to such an extent that we have made
arrangements to manufacture on an elaborate scale, and our Pill
Department is now under the management of one of the most expert and
reliable pill-makers in the colonies’.
Alfred Franklin Scammell, the eldest son of Luther Robert, joined the
firm on 5 March 1905; his younger brother, Robert Grey Scammell,
followed him into the business in December 1907. Like all new lads,
Alfred learned the business from the bottom, washing bottles in the
bottle store, under the supervision of E F Lipsham. He later recalled
that his father ‘had great horror of anyone saying his children had
been given privileges’, an attitude that he inherited.
Alfred went on to describe the simple organisation and operation of
the Adelaide warehouse at that time:
Next door [to the bottle store] was the printing dept., next along the
lane the analytical lab. and manufacturing, and in the centre of the
building old Jack Wall ground and sifted the many powders which the
business required then. Upstairs was filling and finishing ... Trap
doors in the floors through which a continuous rope with a hook ran
over a wheel in the roof acted as elevator and brought jars or other
containers from the cellar or ground floor to the filling floor ...
The pill dept. where, before the days of compressed tablets, pills
were made by hand - dried - then coated ... was up a very narrow
wooden stairway ...
Herbert Grabia was a lad with me in Pendlebury’s Finishing Dept.
Herbert and I filled all the bottles required by the Company in
Australia, except the galenicals and drugs which were in King Wm. St.
cellar, Eucalyptus Oil, Milk Emulsion, Essences and a host of other
lines in quantities which to us looked enormous, but not by present
day comparisons. Even then we were always trying to improve speed and
quality of work and I remember how, instead (of driving in the waxed
corks in Emulsion bottles, we used a large leather glove with which we
held three or four bottles and with a wooden lever which was put under
the window sill pushed all the corks in together ...
I was moved to the cellar in King Wm. St., known as the Wet Room. ...
country orders [were] carried in cases up [the] backstairs across the
lane to Bush in the packing dept. Suburban and town orders up steep
steps - single bottles for town sales [were] thrown up to Johnny
Rosenthal ... We packed each item as needed - a bottle from under the
bench - a winchester from the adjacent fixture - fill the bottle -
replace winchester and cork it - open cork drawer and get cork for
small bottle - then label drawer to get right one - damp label, often
by licking it - fix it - wipe the bottle.
Herbert Grabia who started as a young lad at Faulding in 1907 recalled
that ‘We had a one horse trolley for delivering wholesale and suburban
orders, driven by Mr McMahon. The Shipping carrier was a Mr Bailey of
Kilkenny, who transported goods to and fro from Port Adelaide to
Adelaide.’20 Country orders to the far west of South Australia went by
coastal vessel, others were dispatched by train.
The rivalry between the two local manufacturers was often intense and
was not confined to the production of eucalyptus oil. In 1902 the
rivalry extended as far as the High Court, because of Bickfords’
promotion of a ‘Milk Emulsion’, contrary to Faulding’s contention that
it was already one of its registered brand-names. Earlier Faulding had
sought to register the names ‘Milk Emulsion’ and ‘Milkemulcene’ as
trade marks in each state, only to have Bickfords oppose the
application.21 In the event, the matter was settled out of court with
Bickfords agreeing to ‘discontinue the use of the phrase ‘Milk
Emulsion’ as applied to a preparation of Cod Liver Oil’.
The competition between Bickfords and Faulding also further flourished
beyond the colony. Faulding sought advantages in Western Australia in
1892 and an office in Sydney in 1899 for the sale of the firm’s own
preparations. Bickfords also commenced operations in Western Australia
in the 1890s, though in 1902 its Western Australian operations were
merged with those of the Melbourne firm, Felton Grimwade, to form
Felton Grimwade & Bickford Ltd.
Outgrowing the city
As the range of manufactured products grew so, too, did the need for
new premises. Like many manufacturers who had long established
premises in the city, Faulding was forced beyond the parklands in the
early years of the twentieth century. The cramped conditions in the
city provided little chance for expansion and for the development of
new, more noxious manufacturing practices. Faulding acquired a
property at Thebarton in 1910, and in an old building there continued
the distillation of Eucalyptus oil. The demands of the war, and
particularly the need to manufacture Epsom salts to replace the loss
of German imports, prompted the construction of the first new
buildings on the Torrenside property. The production of the Epsom
salts marked a radical departure for Faulding in so far as it
represented the firm’s first endeavour to venture into the production
of chemicals for industry, and provided a new avenue for growth in the
future. Faulding constructed a new warehouse in James Place in 1924,
and consolidated manufacturing in enlarged premises at Thebarton. The
company embarked upon the manufacture of penicillin in 1943, when the
drug was still being developed. This decision led Faulding to
manufacture modern drugs, and since that time it has abandoned many of
the old grocery lines and industrial chemicals that were once the
backbone of its manufacturing operations.
The demands of pharmaceutical manufacturing and the need for modern
warehouse facilities encouraged Faulding to consolidate its operations
at Thebarton; the company finally left the city in 1972. Bickfords had
left the city in early 1957, when the firm concentrated its
warehousing and manufacturing operations on one site at West Croydon.
Changes within pharmaceutical manufacturing, reflected in the success
of Bickfords and Faulding, meant that retail pharmacists failed to
shed the image of exclusive grocers even though their position in the
community was assured by law. Drug manufacture increasingly became the
preserve of large companies, with the revolution in drug therapy
following the development of the sulpha drugs and penicillin in the
1940s. The development and manufacture of these drugs required capital
and conditions that individual pharmacists could not hope to
duplicate. Because of this, retail pharmacists have become dispensers
of drugs already prepared by the large manufacturers and retailers of
a wide range of other goods to remain profitable. The retail
pharmacists, unlike their manufacturing colleagues, have remained in
the city, though no longer visited by William Shakespeare with his
bundle of check weights.
1 Dirk Van Dissel, ‘The Adelaide Gentry, 1850-1920’, in Eric Richards
(ed) The Flinders History of South Australia: Social History Adelaide
1986, 333-70
2 The first meeting to establish the South Australian Institute of
Architects was held on 26 July 1886. The new Institute lobbied
parliament for an act to provide for the registration of architects,
and a bill was introduced in 1889. However, the bill lapsed and it was
December 1939 before the Architects Registration Act was finally
passed. Michael Page Sculptors in Space: South Australian Architects,
1836-1986 Adelaide 1986
3 Kevin White ‘Medical Professionalism in Nineteenth Century South
Australia’ JHSSA 15, 1987, 130-42
4 Gregory Haines Pharmacy in Australia: The National Experience North
Sydney 1988, 1-12
5 John FT Grimwade A Short History of Drug Houses of Australia Ltd to
1968 Melbourne 1974, 10
6 Register 21 May 1845
7 JH Young ‘Early Pharmacy in South Australia: An Excursion’,
Australasian Journal of Pharmacy 30 May 1935, 510
8 CS Hill ‘Early History of Pharmacy in South Australia’, The Chemist
and Druggist of Australasia 39 No 1, 9 Jan. 1924, 16
9 South Australian Parliamentary Debates (SAPD), 15 May 1862 col. 59
10 Young, 29 June 1935, 612. He names Main and Geyer, Bickfords,
Goddard and McKechnie in Hindley Street, four more in Rundle Street
and three more in King William Street
11 Stevens Almanac of 1850
12 Almanac of 1857
13 Young, 29 June 1935, 614
14 Haines 93-6
15 SAPD 1891,146
16 SAPD 1891, 147
17 119/12/1 MLSA
18 Faulding Salary Book dated 23 Feb. 1884, Faulding Archives, in
possession of FH Faulding & Co. Much detail in this chapter is drawn
from these records
19 Register of Factories 64/6
20 Letter of Herbert Grabia to AF Scammell 31 July 1974, collection of
PF Scammell
21 Adelaide Supreme Court Case 228 of 1902