Fremantle Stuff > People > Bateman family > John Wesley Bateman

John Wesley Bateman (1852-1907)

jw bateman

John Bateman Snr (1789-1855) arr. Medina 1830, bought lots, set up business.
Three sons: John (1824-1909), Walter (22 June 1826—24 September 1882), Charles (b. 1828).
Firm J&W Bateman set up 1860. Walter (died unmarried) sold his share to John 1872.

John Jnr's son John Wesley Bateman (1852-17 May 1907 - right) took over the firm from his father 1900. He married Mary Armstrong, 1880.

John Wesley Bateman died 17 May 1907 at his residence Sydenham, Lukin Street, North Fremantle, of ptomaine poisoning. He is buried in Fremantle Cemetery, Congregational MON D 83.

He had a son also called John Wesley Bateman (1879-1947) m. Daisy Kate Augusta (1892-1940). John Wesley Jnr died 4 October 1947 and is buried in Fremantle Cemetery Congregational MON D 82.

The original John Bateman, who came to the colony in 1830, was the first postmaster in Fremantle and was a member of the first Town Trust formed in 1848. His eldest son, John, became the largest shipowner in the State and employed a large number of men in the whaling and timber industries. Another son, Walter, was Fremantle's first representative in the semi-elective Legislative Council which came into being in 1868. A grandson, John Wesley Bateman [above], succeeded to the business established in 1857 under the firm name of J. & W. Bateman, which he had previously managed for many years after the death of his uncle, Walter, and the retirement of his father. He took an active part in everything appertaining to the trade of the port and promoted the West Australian Shipping Association in 1884. For five years in succession he was president of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce. Hitchcock: 104.

(See Portrait.)
In the early hours of Friday, May 17, there passed away, at his residence, in North Fremantle, Mr. J. W. Bateman, eldest son of Mr. John Bateman, and principal of the well-known firm of J. and W. Bateman. By has death, which was primarily due to ptomaine poisoning, Fremantle has lost one of her most prominent citizens. Of him it is said that he was in indefatigable worker, a man of few words, but of unusual experience in all matters relating to shipping and commerce; a man of sound judgment, sincerity of purpose, and one for whom many residents have been in the habit of obtaining sound advice. He was unassuming in manner, and, although not having taken any of the higher public offices, had always manifested a keen interest in all movements having for their object the good of the State and the district in which he resided. He was a man respected and admired for a manly, honest-spoken opinion, which always commanded attention. His death is a loss to the community, which can ill afford to lose such an upright and loyal citizen.
The history of Mr. Bateman's life in Western Australia is really a record of the progress of the State, for with the increased prosperity of the land of his birth his business connections correspondingly rose. Born in Fremantle in 1852, he was the eldest son of Mr. John Bateman, shipowner and pioneer, who in the early days of Western Australia was interested in the whaling industry, in lightering, and in the coastal, Singapore, Chinese, and Mauritius trades. Mr. Bateman, senior, who survives the deceased, sent his son to school in Fremantle, and later on to Bishop Hale's School. In his younger days Mr. J. W. Bateman was passionately fond of the more arduous forms of sport. In the early sixties the firm of J. and W. Bateman was formed, and carried on an extensive trade along the coast and to Singapore, China, and Mauritius, a greater portion of the shipping from this country to those lands being in their hands. The deceased ultimately entered his father's firm, and early evinced that keen business ability and foresight which in later years stood him in good stead, and was chiefly responsible for his successful career. In 1880 he married Mary, daughter of Adam Armstrong, an old colonist. The demands of the business, which came more and more under his direct control, did not prevent him from interesting himself in the welfare of the State and of Fremantle in particular. He was the founder of the W.A. Shipping Association, and was chairman of directors of that body for many years. For over five years he presided over the affairs of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce. Under his guidance the firm, of which at the time of his death he was the sole member, extended its operations over the whole of the State. As chairman of the Fremantle Citizens League and member of several other bodies, he came into close contact with the people of the Port, by whom he was held in deep respect, a fact which was emphasised last week by the half-masting of all flags. Mr. Bateman was attended from the commencement of his fortnights illness by Dr. Martin, who called in other medical practitioners in consultation. Deceased leaves a widow, a daughter, and seven, sons, the two eldest of whom have been engaged in their father's firm for some years. Seldom in the history of Fremantle has a funeral approached the dimensions of that of the late Mr. John Wesley Bateman, which took place on Saturday afternoon from the residence, "Sydenham," Lukin-street, North Fremantle. It was a marked tribute to the high position held by Mr. Bateman as a public man, a leader of the mercantile community, and a respected resident of Fremantle, a town in which he had practically resided all his life. Prior to the cortege leaving "Sydenham," a short and deeply impressive service was conducted by the Rev. E. Davies, of Johnston Memorial Congregational Church, at which the deceased had been a regular attendant. There were present about 40 of his relatives. Afterwards the funeral procession started for Fremantle Cemetery, and ere it reached the entrance there were no fewer than 150 vehicles following the hearse. The route taken was along Swan-street to the North Fremantle Bridge, along East-street and Highstreet to the Cemetery gates. It was close on 5 o'clock before the service began. The coffin was of massive oak, with carved mouldings and solid brass mountings, with brass breast-plate, on which was engraved, "John Wesley Bateman, died 17th May, 1907, aged 54 years." The following gentlemen acted as pall-bearers:—Captain T. E. Shaw, Captain Rickers, Mr. Barrymore, Mr. G. F. Moore, Mr. T. L. Harbutt, Mr. E. F. Duffield, Mr. W. Paterson, and Mr. A. G. Leeds. The coffin was placed by the side of the grave, and the service was then commenced by the Rev. E. Davies. It is estimated that about 2,000 people were around the grave. The chief mourners were Messrs. John Bateman, sen (father), John W. Bateman, Louis L. Bateman, Herbert P. Bateman, Guy Vernon Bateman, William Bateman, and Charles Bateman (sons), William A. Bateman, Louis Bateman, and Samuel Bateman (brothers), F. Hollis, J. Higham, H. Higham, H. Stirling, F. W. Koeppe, W. Armstrong and A. Armstrong (brothers-in-law), F. Bateman, M. Bateman, H. B. Higham, A. E. Higham, F. G. Higham, E. A. Higham, N. Higham, W. Higham, E. H. Stirling, A. Stirling, Thos. Hicks, Richard Hicks, W. Hicks, L. D. Hicks, H. D. Hicks. H. Wilson, V. Wilson, Louis Konoop, and Geo. Forsyth (cousins). The following public bodies were represented:—Fremantle Town Council (Mr. Macmillan, Town Clerk, in the unavoidable absence of the Mayor) ; North Fremantle and East Fremantle Councils; Fremantle Chamber of Commerce, by Messrs. W. D. Gilfillan (president), and Allnutt, Hudson, and Feely (vice-presidents); Fremantle and District Citizens' League, by Mr. W. Fisher Beard (vicepresident); the Wholesale Grocers and Traders' Association, by Mr. S. Lodge, of G. Wood Son and Co. (chairman); Fremantle District Traders' Association, by Messrs. P. J. Press and J. A. Hicks (vice-presidents); National Political League, by Mr. F. W. Green (secretary) ; the shipowners by Messrs. Ridley, Salmon, Downer, King, Buzolich, and Syme; Commercial Travellers' Association, by Mr. L. Alexander (president); Perth Chamber of Commerce, by Mr. F. Conigrave (secretary); Trinity Congregational Church, Perth, by Mr. C. A. Hall (deacon): W.A.S.A., Ltd., by Cr. F. Nicholas (secretary) ; Fremantle Cemetery Board, Fremantle Hospital Board, and Fremantle Tramway Board, by Mr. E. Solomon (chairman); Fremantle Harbour Trust, by Mr. F. Stevens (secretary); Captain Irvine (Chief Harbourmaster) and Captain Morrison (Deputy Harbourmaster); the Police Department, by Inspector McKenna, and other bodies. Among those who attended to pay their last token of respect to the deceased were Mr. Jas. Price (Minister for Works), Mr. D. Forrest. Mr. R. Fairbairn, R.M., Mr. W. A. Murphy, J.P., Mr. W. Mills, Mr. E. Craik, Mr. T. Carter, Mr. J. Humble. Mr. A. E. Davies, M.L.A., Messrs. J and F. Gallop, Cr. R. Holmes, Mr. George Holmes, and the members of the Fremantle Masonic Lodge No. 2, to which the late Mr. Bateman had belonged. Over 100 employees of the firm of Messrs. J. and W. Bateman walked from "Sydenham" to the Cemetery behind the chief mourning coaches. Obit, Western Mail 25 May 1907: 16.


JWB's memorial: Erected in loving memory of John Wesley Bateman by his sorrowing wife and children who died at Sydenham North Fremantle 17th May 1907 aged 54 years 11 months; at Congregational MON D 82.

References and Links

Bott, Bruce 2001, 'Some of John Bateman's houses in and around Fremantle', Fremantle Studies, 2: 17-35.

Brown, Patricia M. 1996, The Merchant Princes of Fremantle: The Rise and Decline of a Colonial Elite 1870-1900, UWAP.

Hitchcock, JK 1929, The History of Fremantle, The Front Gate of Australia 1829-1929, Fremantle City Council.

Wikipedia entry for John Bateman 1789-1855

Geoffrey Bolton's entry for John Bateman 1789-1855 in the Australian Dictionary of Biography, 1966

Obit, Western Mail 25 May 1907: 16.

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