George Donald, first Mayor of Hamilton Municipal Council, 1872-1876
The first Hamilton Council Chambers, 70 James Street, Hamilton,
The Aldermen needed someone to “do the work.” They decided a Council Clerk would be employed, at a salary of 40 pounds per annum. James Ray was selected, initially to work very part-time for 2 hours per week.
Wattle blossoms form patterns on the surface of Styx Creek, along with clusters of discarded bottles (2013)
Memorial Gates at the Tudor Street entrance to Gregson Park, Hamilton (2013)
The Donald family donated a stone drinking fountain in memory of Hamilton's first Mayor, George Donald.
Opening of the Donald Fountain, Gregson Park, Hamilton
The Hamilton clock tower was named the W R Alexander Clock Tower, in honour of Mr Alexander's services as Alderman.
1880 Council Chambers building
Hamilton Municipal Chambers (n.d.)
Hamilton Municipal Building and Clock Tower in Beaumont Street,
12 February 1936
The Council would not go on to bigger and better things. Success and growth meant others were eyeing off Hamilton’s prosperity. Change was ahead.
The Municipal building was substantially rebuilt. Local historian Mrs Mavis Ebbott recalls that when the clock tower was replaced, something was different. It was not as high as it was before.
The first Aldermen of the Hamilton Municipal Council had an intense local focus. They wanted to make Hamilton a better place for its residents - to live, work and shop.
Unattributed photographs by Ruth Cotton.