A collection of papers, diaries, letters and photographs relating to the family of Octavius Charles Beale, piano manufacturer of Annandale.
Octavius Charles Beale was born 23 February 1850 at Mountmellick, Queen's County, Ireland. In 1854, he and his mother joined his father and brothers in Van Diemen's Land. Beale was brought up a Quaker and was sent back to Ireland for six years of further education. He returned to Melbourne, Australia and entered a hardware firm Brooks, Robinson and Co. and eventually became a partner of the company. Beale moved to New South Wales and in 1875 married Elizabeth Baily. Together they had thirteen children. When Elizabeth died in 1901, Beale married her sister Katherine four years later on 4 March 1903.
Octavius Beale participated in a variety of political, societal and moral ventures being an active and often esteemed member of many organisations and societies. However, arguably his greatest achievement was the establishment of Beale and Co., Ltd at Sydney in 1884, of which he was the managing director until 1930. Beale and Co. began as an importer of sewing-machines and pianos, but, by 1893 Octavious had established a large and revolutionary piano manufacturing factory. He focused on local timbers and advertised his instruments as being suited to the changeable Australian climate. In 1902 he patented an all-iron tuning system.
Image: Beale pedigrees family tree from 1619, SAG Manuscript and Image Collection, Item 4/6094