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A. M. BICKFORD AND SONS, LTD.

A STORY OF ENTERPRISE. The third generation of the Bickford family is in charge of the great wholesale manufacturing chemists' business, which has grown from a romantic beginning 84 years ago. The history of the firm is one of enterprise and a genuine endeavor to establish Aus- tralian manufactures of the highest quality.

Memories of the days when Hindley- street west was the hub of the city, when top-hatted gallants raced their steeds for princely wagers. when the streets of

Adelaide were called after the wives of the principal citizens, tales of the bushrangers and of journeys with packhorses from Ade- laide, to Wentworth, are all part

of the history of the firm of A. M. Bick ford & Sons Ltd. The founder of the firm, William Bickford, was the son of a Devonshire squire, but England offered little opportunity to the younger sons of those days. So William Bickford in his early twenties received a parental blessing and a fair capital, and duly qualified as a chemist, set out in the old

sailing vessel, Platina, for Adelaide. A sea voyage in those days was an affair of months, and lasting friendships and at- tachments were formed in place of the mere shrpbroad acquaintanceship of mo- dern travel. Young Mr. Bickford, while   on the voyage out, met his affinity in a   Miss Ann Margaret Garrett, and when the   vessel reached Adelaide the young couple were married. Mr. Bickford then estab- lished in 1839 the first retail chemist's shop in the State. The business, which was opened in Hindley-street, prospered exceedingly, and it was not long before the young chemist was forced to move to more commodious quarters. His new pre- mises were situated near what is now the Theatre Royal Pharmacy, and here he continued to manage his business with great success. Always deeply interested in sport, Mr. Bickford was exceedingly proud of his horses. It was this pride which indirectly resulted in his early death. Having accepted the challenge of   a rival for a contest between their respec-   tive horses over a two-mile course, the   race to take place on the park lands where ' the Victoria Park Racecourse now stands, he insisted on riding, although suffering from a very heavy cold at the time. He was successful in the race, and the cham-   pagne dinner, which was the wager, was   duly given, but it proved to be Mr. Bick- ford's last festivity. He had risen from a sick bed to take part in the race, and pneumonia quickly supervened on his deep-   seated cold, and his death followed in a short space. He was only 35 years of age at the time of his death, and his widow was some years younger. With indomi- table courage, however, she determined to maintain the business for the sake of her five children, the eldest of whom was only 10 years old. It was necessary that a qualified phamaceutical man should be in charge, and the services of Mr. Hutton were obtained. She decided to send the second eldest boy, Harry, to England to   obtain his training as a chemist, and on the completion of his schooling in Ade- laide this was done. From then until the return of his elder brother, Mr. William Bickford (the father of the present managing director of the firm),   helped his mother in the man- agement of the rapidiy-growing business which by then was in the name of A. M. Bickford & Sons.   Adventurous Journeys.   On the return of Mr. Harry Bickford from England, he took over the management of the shop, and Mr. William Bickford   attended to the outdoor activities   of the firm. Long journeys with pack-   horses were undertaken, and the store- keepers throughout the State eagerly awaited the arrival of their medicinal   supplies. It was not only in South Aus- tralia, however, that this was the case, for in company with Mr. John Church, Mr. Bickford sometimes pushed on as far afield as Wentworth booking orders. In after years he would often relate how on these trips he had several times   encountered members of the notorious Kelly gang. They never offered any violence to Mr. Bickord's party, however, and more than once after bailing them up to assure themselves of their identity, Ned Kelly had "shouted" for all hands. A promise was always extracted, however, that news of the outlaws' whereabouts should not   be disclosed, and this agreement was faithfully observed. Mr. Bickford was away sometimes for nine months at a time on these periodical trips, and it was nothing unusual for the ?? traveller in addition to his own stock orders to book a thousand cases of brandy for the towns along the Darling. There is no doubt that these early trips of Mr. William Bickford really laid the foundations of the great wholesale business of   the firm to-day. Extending the Business. Tn 1876 the well-known cordial factory of Bickford's Limited, was established in Waymouth-street. This cordial and   aerated w.itw factory is repuvte with tiie latest m.ichinerr and appliances, ent-urins the deanliness and purity whicdi hive for so long characterised the linn's pro . ducts. This factory is under the control of Mr. Ke-^ald Bickford. It J8 stated that Messrs. Cickford, Ltd., Fere the first to introduce irinser ale into Australia. Rapid Development. i few years Uter the eplendid sito J:i Curri'.'-^treet tirsr. tm.rupied by tht lirrn ;>?* ifc^lesale .marmtai-tur iuz chemists and drugzist?. In tli'W a. -School wai sreuated .'tloap^iic ibe buddinft, and it -wuuld be diiiu-i.li i'.n en "old-iimer" to rrco'riise ihr> B[n-.t w:-'i ?ho maasiTe and handenmn boi!<!in?j -rlsii ,i floonigr space of a!,WJ S|iian. im vrn,--i. iwniEra the "firm to-day. The bulk ftorf^. ilMi uiiinin a?i ofiicw ate berc, aad

even -with a frontage of 90 ft. to Currie-street, with 120 ft. depth along Leigh-street, the four storeys and a base ment have proved too Email for the re quirements of the firm, which became a limited company tinder the title of A- M. Hickford & Sons, Limited, in 190.1. TLc dental requisites, for instance, had taken up so much spare, and had become so important a department that in 1920 it was decided thai they should be dealt with as a Fcparate business, and accord ingly tiie Commonwealth Dental Supply Co., Jjiinited, was formed Trith pre- t luiscs hi Kins \Vi]ii;im-sueet. Here a] complete fUvU of dental requisites and appliances is kept, with all the most up-. to-date machinery for dental workrooms 1 and laboratories. The huge stocks carried considerably simplify the problems con fronting the dentist, and the bis space available makes it possible to display the ! stock so That a b-.iyy man is able to see liis requirements at a slance. At the Corrie-fltrcct building axe the stocks of hospital aud doctors' equipment. The latest inventions in hospital aoces j poria? and the finest and most delicate eurseon'e instrumenld are displayed, and the modern sL=;:ect <>£ thi-= stock is in sharp contract to the great old-fashioned drug gist's jar.s. rviics of the ear'.y days of the I firm, which on a h:sh Ehelf in the I lio?pital deportment, where every appli ance that r?ieu<-c can invent to &.K)the the 'ot of the hospital patient is to be found. T:iii department is under the management of Mr. ljC-lie B. Bickford, ft ho has familiarised himscif nflUi every detail reiataiG to tJiss braoci 01 the lirai'a acLiv.Lic-. Inlere-^tinj Departments. The room where the Etodcs ot wet drugs arc kept is a model of cleanliness and a'rines-. The utmost precautions are taken | that all drus? f=hali be kept thoroughly! corketl and airtight. The >rreat jars full ] !of their precion-i compojnds are ea'ih '?? equip);?d with spcdol tajw. and no old;

btock is allowed to accumulate in the jars, which are emptied and refilled witn unfailing regularity. Tlie huge 'liu'fc store is open lor two hour* every morninz, and all stocks must be replenished in each de partment at that time. On another iloor arc the huzc fteel cylinder? of 002 gas fcr aerating water?, and it is tagni licant of the care exercised that in ail these years Bickfords have never yet had on explosion, thoush thousands of the cylinders are handled every year. In con nection -with the subject at aerated

?waters, mention must be made of the ela borate display oi aada fountains and ac cessories shown by the firm. The assay department is one of the most interesting spots in the {mat Cnrrie- Etreet warehouse, and some of the moat delicate balances and machinery in the world may be seen here. , The packing departments for the town and country are kept entirely separate, and every order mast fro out in rotation. The wet and dry drugs are stored and packed separately, and it is most instroc tire to note the care which in taken to preserve certain drugs in their pristine ex cellence. In some cases coolness and dart ness are necessary, and in others warmth is g<*^TiHfl In any case provision is made for the correct temperatures in certain places, and the stock is sorted and kept according}?. All poisons are kept entirely separate, and there is no possibility of any mistakes being mode whertSby a deadly poieon could be packed in place of a harm less drug. Considerable space is devoted to a deportment where a medical man or .cbezmst mar find the majority of bis requirements ready to nis hand is a con venient quantity. There la an excellent display of c&emist's Gimdrres and patent medicines, for which the firm has count less agencies. j : The .Management of the {Business. j The manager of the warotonse. Mr.' Hoxard Whi?bread, has been with the company for over twemy-five years, and . there are tew man connected with, the ?vriboJcsaie drag trade in Acasralio. better I known or more highg- respected. Oo tiie ifinanciai side the secretary, Mr. J. F. Bennett, another eajpioye of tome thirty years' standing, has control of the couzz ing-bouse. and tliw gentleman U equally well known in Amcra'im bofAaess circles. A jrood deal of cork cuttinz is also done on the premises, and in this connection Mr. Harold Biclcford, the present manazin^ director of the arm i.= an authority. Arter leaving college in 3593 Mr. Bickford, who is a son of Mr. William Bickford. wns taken into ttc basines?. He had to learn every branch of the trade, and franKly ad mii£ that for two yeara he familiarised himself with the interesting details of botUe-a-ashin?. This Jed him to take an interest in tbc matter of accurate fit ting oi corks, and 189!) he paid a visit to Mauri Brothers, of Seville, Spain, the famous cork merchants, wiio have be?a represented in Adelaide for uianv year 9 by Me£?ns. Bicltford & Sons, Limited. He xas preatly imi)Ti!sieJ .it the ti-'a<? with tie idea oi planting cork foreEts in oar o?n arid nortliern' distrieu. and on his return to South Awtrslia cndeavori^d to intcrc.-t the Goveinmivii in thp scheme. The fact, however, Lh-it a cork tree must be 35 years old before it can bo strifxped, aoil tiat thr?n it uiust be loi'l undisturbed for au otuer 10 years, somewhat damj>ed official ar.ior in the matter. It is just this policy of l?>km^ t-ir ahead, bo^-.ri-er, wiiich has helped tt> piaco Uiekfords, Limited, on iw pri^eiit fifni fwtins. Four vrars after Harolfl Fiickforu's rctam from Spain it ?m* decided t^> fona tlie "oii^ineKs into .i iii::itei company, aGd in l!K?j, .v'acn itr. Hurry Ilic'^ford retired from active at?soHation with -tiae business, hp tis apriojntod niana^in; dirPctor. ImlMjod Trtth a lhor.^n^b l^ief in the possibilities of Austral Lin mauaf art tire, llr. Riekforn determined to expand this part oi the bu.--iue>s as much a.- poA^ble. At first the manufacturing xos carried on at Currie*treet. but this soon beeaiup im poSFi:>le, a* gradually more and moro s,?aie ?i> iJemandod by the various department? Aw>rdiru-H-in'l9l4 it \va.s <lcit-rmincd to build cpliiclv now k'.>iraturii-s ;iT!d voi'ks in Wayroooth-stTtet. a!onff!=:do thi <^rdij3 racTorv. '^n the conjpl"l -tiou of ilii: Imiijin; Mr. -1. Hcndry. r. lii^lily-qujiiilit-d <iieu;Lit. -n.-::3 put in i;hMr;.-'. :ui<! ?otih- of tjio u?.vr-.-t Mi I Tixtit up-t<n!:iti? ma?Tilnerv in the \v.>r!d t.-;h inrme'iiat^ly iin-t;i]!o<l. 11 r^ a.\l t^e iii:<v .rhich contain aio.i'il ari; Ei::nuf;ic tcied ia bond nnd?r thi- super\-i?ioD of the ? Cieiomc olliciaa. and here aro Mtustei

tii? stilt, percolators, extractor?, ftf.. I w.lii -'i rip (.iiHtinuaiiv empk>yed in this j svtion of manufacture. N?essrs. Biek- j lord ret.r.:Cy undertook tue raamifajUrre | o n'^ohito aJvohol. and arc no.v prepar- I inj* rhis in large Quantities 'wiih die- J srtMte>t siK-oet-s. It find* considerable ! n* iv Univt?i?ity aad ' ?jOTcrmnens De- j mrtments. UreeJy i-.<c the prosecution of chemical research. In on ndjoin-ins dc- ! piritteut Ihe wHi-ksoTu tonic Uersrajro, ' Mj^tov., i< prepared under the best and i-lc:ini;st < ondiris:L=. ami it id' an intere=-L -iiii to .-cc i.- maturing. Elsewhere ?;i t'-ic jir.Mt liu.lliiuj, *:mcli is rsplcw wi*H corv modern c<i3venioDC?*. is t*y bo found a ajant au:*A?t'. <wie j: the largest ' ia the Vommanwealih. iiein? 6 j ft. C in. in diameter. * >intn.e3t-! ; o; nil ?ns are liJ longer pn^Dared l>y ja:.<o)'io!:i iiand methods, hut in clcstrically drivv?>i ointment mills of various tjT'S*. . An ?-le< nii-a;!:y controlled ireisriiinj aia- ? chirv. wi-ich oin be srade-J to the weight | o: :> *:n^le hair. i.< m continual usx and j the acc:irac\- *vii.h whicji it weighs seidlitz j A tibltt machine. on which' any adjii?tme:it can he made xhiie it is ! ?tiii lunnliig, is another ia?enions ?con trjvaT!?c xhich dispense? *wiih hand iaoor and rn—vto.- acmrate dosage and irre irrsuable &i:e!). l-abor-Savin,* IX;vije3. In pjio+her dtTJiitojpnt devoted V) ;he Tii.iniifacturp o* toilet eooJs. a iai^e mill erinda the talcum to a tine powder, i:i-l then sifts it through a iine silk medh. a:ul the same nicety of detail ia apparent ' t.\ ?'!?>? iviioi-e. <iryinp ruoms ? ei^ui-e that tiiori; insredicnts which re- j >m:re to jp bony dry shall hare no possible : <::iine?? vi olitaJnius atmospheric moibiure, j 'I'!:e ari> and men employed ia the majui- j ia"tun> 01 rhe various irucs wort onder j the best Dossjh'e cwiditions. In the pack- j mz-ruoMs everj" kind oi labor-saving device I his beon installed, includinc an eudleF3 eievalor or m>viii2 staircase, ariik-h de livers the various lines to the jriris ready irr p.Kikiu^. libei:iai. snmunins, A-c. This cm !)? s£o!>yt?i in a second, and. like <-vcn thins else alioai the yfonz. is "fool-, ?.?roof/' This mc-?in!? staii?b>c was the invent ion ot tlie tirDi'j Jrotis manager, Mr. ?J. Headrj-. and, foilo?riuc upon ita eoc cc^s^il ir^-UiiLaiion. has been patented ia A-jstralu p.zid abroad. This device liand'es ti::v *-la.-s oi iiackaae, wuidi it auUmiati ?:i'.iy *.imreys to the next floor, where it 'U-iivei-s to either, or bo£b, of two long iraye^iiiis 'ueits alonsade which £it tSe f.'i:la ciiirioyed iv kilieilinc and finishing ::;e goods. A spectator cannot fail to ho issi-iiwted tiy the aimo*t humaa ? nianniT in wnieb Uiis morlo^ crtaircsue conveys and delivera its load to the em ployes in the finishing roam. Apart from the expedition of packing whici this device j 1-ermibs and Uie entire absence of break- i asrc oE evicn Ok moot fragile 'boLtles, the whol< ticbemc co&Xcts tiro fpneaJ: savait tages. firet in that it exrea much labor of lifting and carrying on Uie part o£ the girss, ajid, lunisr, rednaea the poambiiity ?'t any error in snoe only one cUss of goods ia t>eing dealt with on caci packing table at oae time. There ia a epecial tru.t which can. be slipind under a. platform loaded with ?o that Uwv can be moned in a monicut. Hot and cold -water is pro vidc-d for the emjiSoyee ie both the Gurrie- Ftreot iiiid Waymonth-Btrect establfeh 7?ente, rtith every convenience.in Uw way <>t liindiraoiiK. i<!. The flat roo? at Way moutta—treer 13 utilised as a depot ror the ; jousani* of botiies required for the firm, and hyjrienic waahinir machines and rinsers erwu-e ;he utmost cleanliness. Under th.:-Me conditions, and iviti aH denes stan dardise'! in toe'laboratories, it is n>t snr jnris'ng that snch lines as Bickford's Aipiiie iSnow. ~i:d \"ital I4*sal, Maitos, Fluid Majrnevia, Ootfen l&aence, Siponituxl t.<K-oanut Oii. Eau de OoJogne, &c-_, are !u?ur?ebold. ?words tlconrfioTrt tjae Comtcoa xeoith. This article would hardly be complete nrthout a reference to another important sphere df tile firm's acrivitios, namely, the manufacture of Barayina: coaipoauda, notably "Aero"' brand Ancrmte oi Lpad ?!id Honieaux Posrder. These arc manu factured in an entirety separate dopirt iiient. The lii^h standard of quality is maintained hy continual check aJtaJysis in iho !i>-tu"<3 weli-e<juipped analytical labora tories. A <?->nir'let<"3y e^uinped printing dopiit n-e:.t is ititi r?i the preniiaea. xnd a great del! 01 iiirh-ciiKS and distinctive adver t ???:!:-' matter i* turned oirt. in addition to .'?"! the lobe's and wraUDers for the various c:ir:nTr3 :tnd bottles. Messrs. l>ir"kiorii tc Son?, Limited, are amwz t\\c mo^*t j?PO£re^?ive of Adelaide tim,--. uJi<i tbeir r?wrd is one of steaoy "i-r'ji**^. i'^ ivai*':ti ther have alTruy* ha-i tijp di-ojieraiion of their staJT and to wli>m l!io din-i;tor" stJi<--roiixly sive much ot Hie TTiI.-.r fnr rhe rapid advance made. It i~ ?izn:Ji3iril >>f the ito'Acy of the firm tliai f: i.iunr- of the LTnix"eTrerj- nr school ehil di i*n ;'.i*? ahvays freely w?'-<ijaied at the war. i:oj.-.'. iiiid fomccne i* invariably de ;>"Ji"d to .-h'?,v the? ro'jnd and niisnvr thfir qui-rtioTis. Fartory and warehouse <.ye in tli' ::wlvo<i -^nr <rrnn.t objact-'eshon ni.-^'ir:'. eck-Ji^c.

3lr. William Biciford, the founder of the linn and the first chemist in §outh Aih^ tralia.

air. WLliain Bickford (son of the founder).

slr. Harry Bickford (chairman of direc-; tors).

Mr. Harold Bickford (managing director).!

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