BRENNAN & GERAGHTY’S Store is exemplary in being able to demonstrate, through its fabric and through its collection, the characteristics of a typical general store in a regional town. It is one of a few places in Australia where such can be seen.
The Brennan & Geraghty Store complex includes the store, stables, a cottage and ‘Uskerty’, the early 20th century residence built for Martin and Catherine Geraghty. All are constructed in light-frame timber and iron.
The store was first a small two roomed cottage built by Martin Geraghty in 1865. It was converted to commercial premises and opened as a grocery store in April 1871. The grand façade was added to the shop-front in 1886 and records of payments to the architect (Mr Hansen) and builders survive within the archival collection.
In 1887, the rear room was added to create a bigger storage area and to enable the firm to brew their own vinegar on the premises. Their factory two doors away produced wine, jam, chutney, marmalade, port, sherry and other items for sale through their store.
Brennan & Geraghty’s Store was closed in 1972 by George Geraghty leaving stock, records, ledgers and items dating from the first year the store opened. The contents include toilet paper from the 1950s, soap from the 1920s and curry powder from the 1890s.
Cottage Structural evidence shows that the back verandah was enclosed (probably around the time of construction) for a kitchen, and later a bathroom. The only room in the early part of this cottage to have a ceiling was the sitting room; the small bedroom still retains its unlined ceiling, as do the kitchen and bathroom.
The 1873 front door is still in place with its brown and tan colour scheme, which is typical of the period.
Around 1894 the cottage was relocated from the rear of the block (facing John Lane) to its present location facing Lennox Street. At the same time extensions were made to the front of the building by the addition of two rooms and a new hallway. This section of the interior has never been painted and still retains its mellowed golden brown finish. This dark, rare, unpainted interior has survived since 1873.
The exterior front wall and front door retain their 1894 paintwork of Venetian Red and Orange Sands. On the front verandah is a lattice screen, the purpose of which was to allow air to flow through the building on hot days while maintaining privacy. A number of these types of screens survive in Maryborough.
The front fence was built around 1894 and is painted with traditional linseed oil finish.
The front gate is from the same period and is finished with whitewash. The front garden retains some early paintings, but the garden layout has been built to a traditional design as there is no evidence of the original layout.
Only the front door and rear exterior walls of the cottage have been painted, while the side walls have been finished with oil which was common in Maryborough and the surrounding areas.
Open 10am - 3pm