John Thomas Neale was born in 1833 at Elizabeth Farm in Parramatta, to George Roddel Neale (1803-1883) and Bridget Murphy (1812-1875). His grandfather William Neale had arrived in 1794 on the Surprize as part of the NSW Corps (102nd Regiment of Foot). John T. Neale was the nephew of City of Sydney alderman John Neale (1797-1875), and cousin of John Thomas Neale (1823-97) of Potts Point. His parents rented Elizabeth Farm from the Macarthurs.
John Thomas Neale married Elvira Agnes Vardy in Parramatta in 1856, and they had two children, John G and Florence (who died aged 1). After Elvira’s death at 39 in 1865, John T. Neale married his sister-in-law, Hannah Elizabeth Rabone in 1867. They had four children together and lived at ‘Ada Villa’ near Macdonaldtown station in the 1870s. They later moved to the corner of Edgeware and Camden Streets in Enmore and lived at Trade Street from early 1887.
John Thomas Neale died at ‘East View’, Gordon Street, Petersham in 1911 after a long illness. Two daughters and two sons survived him.
Occupation & interests
In his younger years, John Thomas Neale worked as a produce merchant and on his uncle’s property in the Monaro. After returning to Sydney in the 1850s, he became a temporary clerk in the Colonial Architect’s branch within the Department of Works. He progressed in the Department to become an accountant and head assistant clerk on a good salary. He was still at the Colonial Architect’s office in 1889 when Colonial Architect, James Barnet, was designing Newtown’s Courthouse and Marrickville’s Post office.
John Neale was a was a justice of the peace (JP). He was involved with the local Methodist Church. His second wife was the daughter of Methodist missionary, Reverend Stephen Rabone.
Local government service
John Thomas Neale was an alderman on Newtown Council in 1875-77 and 1883-88, representing Enmore Ward. He served on the Finance Committee during his first term and on the Libraries and Lighting Committees during the second term. He was Returning Officer for the electorate of Newtown-St Peters in 1893-95, 1899 and 1901.
Biographical information for this alderman was originally researched by Mark Matheson for the Newtown Project Website.
‘Personal’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 29 December 1911, p. 6. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article15299176
‘Obituary’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 11 January 1922, p. 12. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article15984557
Australian Men of Mark 1889. Charles F Maxwell, Sydney.