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Stott, Sydney (1857–1927)

from Sydney Morning Herald

The death occurred on Thursday, at Viewbank, Burke-road, East Malvern, Melbourne, of Mr. Sydney Stott, founder of the firm of Stott and Underwood, Ltd.

Mr. Stott, who was 71 years of age, being born in 1856 at Ballarat, Victoria, was a law clerk in Melbourne when he commenced his career in the typewriter business in 1883. At that time typewriters were unknown in Australia, and the establishment of an agency proved a difficult task. The idea had its origin in a hobby which Mr. Stott had cultivated — that of shorthand. That system was utterly unknown in business offices, and legal firms relied on longhand drafts. In his spare time Mr. Stott published the Australasian Shorthand Magazine, and included among its subscribers a number of barristers and Judges. The late Mr. Justice Hood once suggested that Mr. Stott should take shorthand notes of legal judgments, and from humble beginnings Mr. Stott built up a large practice in this class of work. He was forced to send to England for a typewriter. From this it was an easy transition to the selling of typewriters. Mr. Stott found that it was necessary to train operators and teach them shorthand. Soon afterwards he established business colleges and selling agencies in all the capital cities of Australia and New Zealand.

Mr. Stott was at an exhibition in New York in 1901, when he saw the first motor car. He was also acquainted with the pioneers of the aeroplane, the phonograph, and the cinema. He helped to found the Royal Automobile Club, and was president for two years. He was also first president of the Road Users' Association; later merged into the National Roads Association. He was, in addition, one of the founders of the Rotary Club in Australia. The teaching of shorthand, however, was always his chief delight.

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Citation details

'Stott, Sydney (1857–1927)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 9 August 2020.

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