9 Miller Street

9 Miller Street
West Melbourne VIC 3003
photographer: Sue Scarfe

Also known as Sturgess Terraces (1-11)
Previous Address 5 Miller Street before 1889 council street renumbering. Source: Sands & McDougall directory
Constructed 14/10/1873
Style Victorian, Mid: 1860-1875
Builder William Sturgess, 20 Milton Street West Melbourne

Timelapse Building Images


5 to 11 Miller Street West Melbourne

photographer, Graeme Butler

Land Details

1. 1895 MMBW map

2. Crown Compiled Record Plan

3. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article7305206

4. Mr. Solomon Solomon purchased this crown allotment block. According to Sands & McDougall Melbourne Directory, he lived in Collins Street Melbourne, however he sold up all his holdings in 1865 and left for America.

Important and Extensive Clearing Sale of Valuable City and Suburban Properties, Mining Shares, Building Society and Companies’ Shares comprising – Allotments, Franklin street west, near Laughton’s Soho Foundry, Melbourne, Brick cottages and land at Little Provost street Hotham, Allotments, corner of Hawke and Miller Streets opposite the Benevolent Asylum. Crown Hotel and land at Prahran. Farm of 128 acres near Broadmeadows. Government allotments at Sunbury. Mining shares, Building Society shares, Ice Company shares.

The property of Mr. S. Solomon, who is leaving the Colony for the Americas.

The whole for absolute sale by Mr Robert Byrne to sell at auction at the rooms 40 Collins Street east on Tuesday 6th December 1865 at Twelve o’clock noon precisely.

The Herald, Tuesday 5th December 1865.

Building Details

Notice of intent to build.

Street: Miller & Curson (sic)

Number: 5634. Date 14/10/1873

Owner & Builder: William Sturgess, 20 Milton Street West Melbourne. (the house at 20 Milton Street no longer exists)

Fee: 8.15.0

Type: Four 1-story, One 2-story houses. (All with a private back yard gardens)

(We believe the notice meant to say “Four 2-story & One 1-story houses”) Houses 3 to 11.

We believe the single story home at number eleven was also built by William Sturgess, 1. Look at the way house eleven’s chimney is half inset into the shared wall with house number nine. 2 Look at the shape to the chimney top, its like the other chimney tops on other houses built by William Sturgess in this row.

Other significant building works carried out by William Sturgess can be found here.

Burchett Index

Subsequent Building Alterations

New concrete verandah floor and the upper home’s original left side balcony window has been altered to a door.

Architectural Features

  • Fence
    Cast Iron

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Doors

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Windows

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Balcony

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Lacework
    Cast Iron

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Fin Wall

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Fin Wall

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Lacework
    Cast Iron

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Building Ornamentation

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Building Ornamentation

    Sue Scarfe photographer

  • Chimney

    Sue Scarfe photographer

Heritage Significance and Listings

Heritage Listings and Explanatory Notes

How is it significant?
The Sturgess row houses are significant historically and aesthetically to West Melbourne and the City of Melbourne.

Why is it significant?
The Sturgess row houses (1-11) are significant.
1. Historically, as in part the long-term residence of William Sturgess one of West Melbourne most successful developers and representative of a major growth period (Victorian-era) in West Melbourne; and
2. Aesthetically, for the distinctive arcaded end bay to the connected terrace row, and uncommon cast-iron detailing also as contributory to a significant Victorian-era streetscape.


From To Owner More Info Data Source
1975 to date Private Hatcher Index
1945 1974 Mary Frances Shrumpton Hatcher Index
1943 1944 William, Robert & F B Thornton Hatcher Index
1898 1942 Fanny ‘Frances’ Moulton Hatcher Index
1892 1897 Thornton Hatcher Index
1873 1891 William Sturgess Hatcher Index
1858 1865 Solomon Solomon (crown land purchaser) http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article155036655 Hatcher Index
abt 40 thousand years earlier 1835 Boon Wurrung and Woiwurrung (Wurundjeri) peoples of the Kulin Nation https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Victoria Hatcher Index


From To Resident More Info Data Source
1975 to date Private Hatcher Index
1974 1974 William Robert Howe Hatcher Index
1972 1973 David & Jan O’Donnell Hatcher Index
1971 1971 vacant Hatcher Index
1958 1970 George Leslie Bennett Hatcher Index
1949 1957 William Lial Knight Hatcher Index
1947 1948 Mary Knight Hatcher Index
1939 1945 Mrs Lila May Knight Hatcher Index
1938 1938 no rate book Hatcher Index
1936 1937 blank Hatcher Index
1933 1935 William Knight Hatcher Index
1931 1932 blank Hatcher Index
1926 1930 William Arthur Stevenson Hatcher Index
1913 1925 Arthur Wisby Hatcher Index
1910 1912 Yule or Louis Ewald Hatcher Index
1908 1909 Emily Laidlaw Hatcher Index
1899 1907 William Orr Hatcher Index
1896 1898 Edward Comerford Hatcher Index
1888 1895 John Lane Hatcher Index
1884 1887 Charles Cook Hatcher Index
1883 1883 blank Hatcher Index
1882 1882 John Horsley Hatcher Index
1881 1881 F Bell Hatcher Index
1875 1880 Jno Smith Hatcher Index

Social History


9 Miller Street, West Melbourne was constructed by builder and property owner William Sturgess in early 1874.

It was part of a larger portion of land Sturgess purchased in late 1873 that remained in the hands of the Sturgess family until the early decades of the twentieth century.

The house gained its current street number in 1889. It appears to have been subdivided off onto its existing separate title in 1943.

For most of its history, the house has been occupied by tenants rather than owner/occupants.

“What is now 9 Miller Street was subsequently transferred to a new title with presumably its current boundaries in 1943 & has since changed owners several times.

supplied by the current home owner

1887 Mr. C. J. Lane.

Known as 5 Miller Street before 1889 council street renumbering.

The Argus

1884 Mr. Alexander Murdoch.

The Age

1882 James McKenzie & Julia Cook.

The Age

1880 marriage between Gourlay & Bell.

Francis Bell and Jessie Bruce were born in Scotland and were married in 1853 at Greenock. On the record it states his father was William Bell and her father was Archibald Bruce.

They gave birth to William Bell in 1854 at Greenock Scotland, Archibald Bruce Bell in 1856 at Glasgow and Francis Bell in 1858 at Greenock Scotland.

The Bell family arrived in the Port Phillip district after 1858.

Then Jessie Bell gave birth of three more children, Jane Bruce Bell in 1860 in Victoria, Jessie Bell in 1861 and Allan Bruce Bell in 1864 in Melbourne.

In 1880 at the home of Francis and Jessie Bell at 9 Miller Street West Melbourne (previously known as 5 Miller before 1889) they witnessed the marriage of their daughter to John Gourlay by the Reverend Doctor Gilchrist. The bride was 18 and the groom was 27 years of age.

Gourlay was born in Glasgow Scotland in 1853, to parents John and Margaret Gourlay nee Syme, they emigrated to Port Phillip sometime before 1860.

John and Jessie Gourlay had three children, Albert, George and Jessie Gourlay.

The Argus

Context and Streetscape

The current property resides within the municipality of the City of Melbourne. We respectfully acknowledge it is on the traditional land of the Kulin Nation.
source: https://www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/SiteCollectionDocuments/history-city-of-melbourne.pdf
historical map source: https://www.slv.vic.gov.au/search-discover/explore-collections-format/maps/maps-melbourne-city-suburbs


The controls listed below affect this property:


This streetscape contains a collection of historic Victorian and Federation buildings. The homes are socially and historically significant buildings for the early development of North & West Melbourne in their own right.

Other Information


Copyright status: This work is in copyright.
Conditions of use: Use of this work allowed provided the creators name and Hotham History Project Inc are acknowledged.

If you or someone you know has any more to add either by old photos or stories of this area, please contact us today. Email info@hothamhistory.org.au