Joshua Bannister was a general and wholesale produce merchant and commission agent, trading as Joshua Bannister & Co. He took over the premises of John Warren in Gheringhap Street Geelong in 1882. By 1884 he was advertising that he could sell chaff cheaper than others in Geelong could sell hay.
He was a South Barwon councillor, serving from 1886 until 1888. He lived at "Holmwood" Highton. In a meeting to address ratepayers before the election he pointed out the necessity for street lighting, especially in the vicinity of Belmont. He was in favour of making the streets and asphalting the footpaths in order to induce the residents of Geelong to live in the district. He said he was also in favour of tree planting. In 1886 after resigning from his council position at South Barwon Shire he nominated to stand as a candidate for the Villamanta ward of the Geelong council. He served from 9 November 1893 until his death.
He was well known breeder of high class trotters. He was a vice president and captain of Corio Bay Rowing Club, vice president of the Geelong and District Coursing Club, president of the Geelong Recreation Club (previously the Yorick Club) and a member of the Mopokes (became part of the Yorick Club).
In March, 1891 his produce store on the south east corner of Gheringhap and Little Malop Streets was extensively damaged by fire. Although the value of the stock and buildings was estimated at £5,400, the insurance cover was only £2,600.
A clearing sale of trotting sires, brood mares and young stock took place at Kirk's Bazaar on 12 July 1907.
He died on 25 September 1907 at a Sydney Sanatorium. He was buried in the lawn section of the Geelong Western Cemetery. The funeral was attended by a large number, including the mayor and councillors of the town. He left an estate of £11,945 to his widow, Jessie Page, relatives and friends. Jessie died on 4 December 1938.
A sale of city properties was held in 1917. The produce business was taken over by Robert Lyall & Son.
George, son of James and Helen (née Easton) Tait, was born in 1844. In 1872 he married Jane Gill (1845-1885) at Connewarre. George, Jane and George's brother Robert selected land in the Omeo Plains, south of Lake Omeo on 4 June 1875. George and Jane's children were:
Minnie Margaret — born 1873, married Robert Henry Blair, died 7 November 1935 at 51 Spring Street at Geelong West
Helen May — born 1876, died 27 August 1945 aged 68, buried at Mount Duneed Cemetery
Alexander Stuart — born 1877, died 17 November 1896 aged 19 at Perth WA
James Easton — born 1879 at Omeo, died 9 January 1900 aged 21, buried in the Presbyterian section of Mount Duneed Cemetery
George Lewis — born 1885, died 14 June 1885 at Omeo, buried at Omeo Cemetery
Jane died on 5 July 1885 at Omeo. After Jane's death, George returned to the Geelong district.
In 1887 he married Mary Jane Blair. Their children were:
Emily Ann — born 28 February 1888, married William Palmer on 18 December 1915 at St George's Presbyterian Church, died 7 November 1950 at Geelong
William George — born 1890, married Ruth Lloyd, died 1954
Lilian Jane — born 1893, married Albert William Cole in 1923, died 6 October 1944
Alice Kate Victoria — born 1895, married John Horace Stephens in 1919, died 25 May 1954 at Barwon Heads
Robert Joshua — born 1898, married Florence May Bailey, died 1978 at Geelong
Alick John — born 1901, married Janet Margaret Campbell in 1927, died 1950 at Creswick
Ronald James — born 1906, married Edith McGillivray Campbell in 1930, died 7 August 1967
Isabella — married John Campbell in 1930
He was a South Barwon Shire councillor serving from 1895 until 1898.
George died on 3 June 1923 aged 79 and was buried in the Presbyterian section of the Mount Duneed Cemetery. Mary Jane died in 1946 aged 80 and was buried with him.
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