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Snook Building

63 South Terrace, 1880

record cellar

I am arbitrarily calling this the Snook Building, as it seems from the data below that John Snook might have been the owner who had it built - and he has a unique place in Fremantle social history as a murderee.

The Rate books indicate George D. Talston and his family had interests in this lot from 1855-1883. From 1879 John Snook and his family held interests until 1901. Several owners followed this date. John Snook was the Fremantle Councillor who was fatally shot at the opening of the Fremantle Town Hall in 1897.
According to the Rate books buildings were erected on this property as early as 1880. It appears that a shop and rooms fronted on to South Terrace with two cottages at the rear. Another shop and rooms was located at the corner of South Terrace and Suffolk Street, this shop is extant.
From 1880 this building is shown on the earliest of the P.WD. Plans, 1897, and continues as an unchanged illustration.
This building is believed to have been the premises in which Maria Tapper / Donaldson (nee Tonkin) b. 1877 and died 1950 taught her school. The 1889 Rate book indicates her second husband William Donaldson as occupier of this cottage. Maria’s first husband Captain John Tapper who sailed on the schooner ‘Ruby’ was drowned near Cossack in 1882 (they had six children). Maria married W. Donaldson in 1883, they also had six children.
In 1899 Lee Sing occupied the house/shop when it was referred to as a laundry. The 1908 P.W.D. plan indicates the building was made of stone.
In 1952 the ownership was transferred to Renown Tyres.

Thanks to Joe Spadaro for this photo from about 1980

This place was identified by the Fremantle Society in 1979/80 as being of cultural heritage significance. (Coded: Purple: "Of architectural and historic significance in its own right")
Currently (2009) the place is an office for an Accountant and Tax Agent.
Physical Description
63 South Terrace is a single storey stone and iron commercial building located on the north west corner of South Terrace and Suffolk Street. The rendered stone building has a zero setback from the pavement and is single storey plus a basement level with grills to the front and at the rear. There is an entrance to South Terrace and an entrance across the truncation with timber doors. The hipped roof is zincalume clad. The place has been modified and may have originally had a verandah.
Statement of Significance
Commercial Building, 63 South Terrace, is a typical rendered stone and iron single storey commercial building dating from 1897. The place has aesthetic value for its contribution to the streetscape and the surrounding area. It is representative of the typical commercial building stock located in the Fremantle area.
The place is historically significant for its associations with the Councillor John Snook, who was fatally shot at the opening of the Fremantle Town Hall in 1897.
It has social value for its associations with Maria Donaldson who was responsible for contributing to the education of children in the Fremantle area.

References and Links

Heritage Council page.

Garry Gillard | New: 1 August, 2016 | Now: 9 August, 2022