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Boulton, Thomas Ernest (1880–1956)

Thomas Boulton, n.d.

Thomas Boulton, n.d.

from Pastoral Review and Graziers' Record, 16 June 1955

One of the best known and most highly respected figures in the pastoral industry of New South Wales, Mr. Thomas Ernest Walter Boulton, died on 7th May at the age of 76.

Mr. Boulton, who was the son of a storekeeper and member of a very big family, was born at Forbes but moved to Condobolin with his parents when quite young. A disastrous fire destroyed his parents' store and all records when he was 13 years old, making it necessary for him to leave school and secure a position in a small office at 5s. per week. After a few months he left this position and, together with an older brother, endeavoured to work a small farm that his father also owned. His father died shortly afterwards and Mr. Boulton was called upon to help in the support of his mother and younger members of his family.

He obtained a job with Mr. Weaver, of Forbes—later to be Weaver and Company, Forbes—and gained a good grounding in the stock and station agency business. Then he went further afield, securing a position in a stock and station firm at Narrandera, and by enthusiastic and tireless work became a part owner shortly afterwards. He joined the staff of the Sydney firm, Harrison, Jones and Devlin, about 1904 and was soon given the management of the stock and property department. This position was retained by him until 1922, when the firm was taken over by Goldsbrough, Mort and Co. Ltd. Mr. Boulton continued as manager until 1926, when he retired to join Mr. T. G. Sherriff in pastoral pursuits. Later, Mr. N. C. Gurner was taken into the partnership, which traded as Sherriff, Boulton and Gurner, holding the well known properties Drildool, at Burren Junction, and Albano, Aberdeen. Mr. Boulton also owned and controlled Burren Station, Burren Junction, and recently acquired a small property in the Orange district. On the day prior to his death he was contemplating purchase of a further property in the Cowra district.

Mr. Boulton loved the simple outdoor life, good quality stock, and the beauties of nature, and always found time to visit the hothouses and gardens of the various large country towns that he visited throughout the years. Until recent months he was blessed with excellent health and up to a few years ago was still playing his regular game of tennis. He played golf until some 12 months ago and recently had taken a keen interest in bowls. Only about ten days before his death, when he was at his Burren Junction property for shearing, he had his first "heart turn" whilst riding over the property.

His pleasure was gambling, not by the way of, say, backing horses or playing cards, but backing his judgment of the weather and pastoral conditions in his extensive dealing operations, and it would be safe to say that his keen judgment was in many instances uncannily correct.

Generally of a rather serious nature, Mr. Boulton liked to tell the following story against himself. He was returning by train from one of his regular trips to his north-west property during a severe drought when, by way of introduction to his only fellow passenger in the carriage, he said: "I'm Boulton from Burren." To this his companion replied: "I don't blame you a bit, it seemed a hell of a place to me too."

Mr. Boulton had a kindly smile and his passing will certainly leave a void in pastoral circles. Although since 1942 he had lived mainly at Bowral, he passed away suddenly at his Mosman Residence. Deepest sympathy is extended to his widow, who had been of great assistance in his many pastoral pursuits during the 48 years of their married life. He is also survived by three brothers and two sisters.

Original publication

  • Pastoral Review and Graziers' Record, 16 June 1956, pp 753 & 755 (view original)

Citation details

'Boulton, Thomas Ernest (1880–1956)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/boulton-thomas-ernest-136/text137, accessed 18 June 2019.

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