The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District]
Tonson Garlick Company, Ltd.
Tonson Garlick Company, Ltd., Cabinetmakers, Upholsterers, House and General Furnishers, Queen and Lorne Streets, Auckland. This extensive and flourishing business was established in 1876 by Mr. E. Holloway and the late Mr. J. Tonson Garlick. In the following year Mr. Robert Cranwell was taken into partnership, and the business was for about a year carried on under the style of Holloway, Garlick, and Cranwell. Mr. Holloway's interest was then purchased by his partners and his name was omitted, and for many years the firm of Garlick and Cranwell was one of the best known in the city. The business grew rapidly and the premises were several times increased in size. All the buildings between Queen Street and Lorne Street were appropriated, giving a frontage of 34 feet and a depth of 165 feet, with basement and upper stories. In course of time the large three-storey concrete building on the upper side of Lorne Street was erected and fitted with all the latest woodware machinery and other labour-saving appliances. This building alone contains 15,000 square feet of floorage, the frontage to Lorne Street being 100 feet. Elaborate and expensive catalogues with artistic illustrations have from time to time been issued, setting forth the many improvements and additions made since the preceding publication. In 1892 the late Mr. Garlick purchased the interest of his partner, and during the ensuing four years succeeded in doubling the returns of the business. This increase necessitating greater accommodation, Mr. Garlick purchased the adjoining premises, which for about thirty years previously had been the ironmongery store of Messrs J. and J. Dickey. The purchase of these premises and the alterations necessary to make the whole suitable to the business cost about £10,000, but Mr. Garlick was determined to have the finest display as well as the finest stock in the city, and neither expense nor trouble was spared to attain that object. This accomplished, a limited liability company was floated, with Mr. Garlick as managing director; but the smooth running of the business was for a time interrupted by a very disastrous fire which occurred on the 17th of September, 1897. The sympathy of the public with the company in this disaster was shown in the success of the great salvage sale, from which hundreds of persons were daily excluded. The restoration of the damaged premises occupied considerable time, but the concrete factory being untouched by the fire, no interruption in the manufacturing departments was occasioned, and with as little lost time as possible a complete reinstatement was accomplished. The carpets, linoleums and other floor coverings are all on the ground floor, and great facilities for inspection are provided. Furniture of all kinds made of the rich New Zealand woods, solid or veneered, is turned out in great quantities for drawing-rooms, dining-rooms, bedrooms, halls and offices, churches and public buildings. The manufacture of billiard tables is a branch recently added, and all the work in this department is carefully supervised by a thoroughly trained and experienced man. By means of a winding patent a combined billiard and dining-table has been most successfully devised. In the splendid new showroom for upholstered goods every variety of suites, occasional chairs and other articles is to be seen; and in the enlarged furnishing drapery show-room there are large assortments of curtains, table covers, muslins, sheetings, blankets, quilts, toilet-covers, tapestries, plushes, velvets, upholstering trimmings, Manchester goods, etc. Some idea of the immense stocks held by the firm may be gained from the fact that from 1000 to 1500 bedsteads are on hand. Woven-wire mattresses of every kind are manufactured on the premises.