A very large albumen paper photograph, reproducing an illuminated address presented to John Dunn Esq. J.P. of Mount Barker (1802-1904), member of Parliament and prominent wheat merchant and miller in early colonial South Australia), by the workers of J. Dunn & Co. on the occasion of his retirement in May 1889. The address, the original of which was illustrated and illuminated by W.G.P. Joyner, gives an indication of the scale and importance of Dunn's enterprises: '... by your persev[er]ance, energy and strict integrity you have overcome all obstacles, and today you have the satisfaction of leaving to your successors the largest milling and wheat business in the Southern Hemisphere'
Image size approximately 325 × 263 mm, on the original ruled mount (visible surface 430 × 365 mm), framed and glazed.
The photograph is beginning to lift slightly at two corners; mount slightly soiled at one corner; frame a little scuffed and marked; overall in excellent condition. On the reverse is the paper label of 'S. Solomon, Photographer, 51 Rundle Street, Adelaide'.
An article in the 'South Australian Chronicle' for 8 June 1889 describes the circumstances of the presentation of the address, and describe the original in detail. 'The address is the work of Mr. Joyner, and is one of his most artistic productions ... The words and the signatures, which number 105, being those of most of the leading employés, are situated in the centre, while all around are well executed paintings of a number of the mills belonging to the firm, taken from photographs. In the left-hand corner there is a painting of the site of the original mill at Hay Valley ... On the top are Mr. Dunn's residence at Mount Barker ['The Laurels'] and the Dunn Memorial Church, which that gentleman presented to the residents of Mount Barker, while the right hand corner is occupied by a view of the firm's stores and offices in Freeman-street [Adelaide, now Gawler Place]. On the left side of the address there are views of the mills at Wilmington, the old mill at Port Adelaide, and at Mount Barker, and two representations of the new Roller Eclipse mill at Port Adelaide. On the other side the Nairne mill takes precedence, while underneath it is the gem of the collection the works at Port Pirie, including some of the shipping of the port with the railway in front. The Port Augusta and Bridgewater mills are represented, and an excellent portrait of Mr. Dunn is also included in the set.' A number of the source photographs are to be found in a Dunn family photograph album, now held by the State Library of South Australia [PRG 1485/3]. Dunn's entry in the 'Australian Dictionary of Biography' records that '[he] retired in 1889 and died at Mount Barker on 13 October 1894. The firm's eleven mills, five with the most modern machinery, then represented an investment of £150,000. They annually had an export trade of some 20,000 tons of flour to Britain, Western Australia, New South Wales and South Africa, some 400 employees, and a payment to farmers of £500,000'.