Robert Watson

Grocer, Butcher

Terms served on Council

Title Council From To
Alderman City of Sydney 1852 1853

Family background

Robert Watson may have been the man of this name who was born at Fintona, County Tyrone, Ireland, on 20 November 1810. His wife was Jane Shearman (died 1911). He died on 5 August 1893. They are buried with their children Robert Samuel Watson and Margaret Scarlett Scott-West in the Presbyterian section of Rookwood Cemetery. Note that genealogical information above is speculative only and requires further research for confirmation.

Occupation & interests

Alderman Watson was probably the grocer who, from 1844, had premises in Cumberland Street, on the corner of Essex Street. He also appears to have held a butcher’s license in 1858 for his shop at 177 Cumberland Street. In 1863 Robert Watson was in business with Samuel Watson, possibly a son, at 177 Cumberland Street, but in 1873 he was a sole trader again. From 1871 to 1886, Robert Watson of Cumberland Street was granted many contracts with the Sydney Council for the supply of coals, mainly for the Botany Waterworks. His fellow contractors included William M Speer. [For further information see ” Sydney’s Aldermen” compiled by Renato Perdon]

Local government service

Robert Watson was elected to Sydney City Council as Alderman for Gipps Ward from 1 November 1852 until 31 December 1853 when the Council was replaced by City Commissioners. He was re-elected on 28 January 1859 and served until 30 November 1864.


NSW Registry of Births, Deaths & Marriages

Society of Australian Genealogists: AGCI index; Cemetery transcripts;  Rookwood Index

State Records of NSW: Immigration records


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