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John Charles (Charley) Belpitt (1858–1923)

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John Charles (Charley) Belpitt (1856-1923) watchman, bootmaker, trade unionist 

Birth: 25 August 1858 in Ryde, New South Wales, son of English-born John Charles Belpitt/Bulpit, labourer, and Catherine, née Murphy, who had been born in Ireland. Marriage: 22 July 1886 in St Paul’s Church, Redfern, Sydney, to New South Wales-born Mary Ann Costello (1862-1906). They had four daughters and two sons. Death: 20 September 1923 at the Coast Hospital, Little Bay, New South Wales. Religion: Anglican. 

  • Father was a convict, accused of machine breaking at Hampshire in 1831.
  • With two of his brothers, Charles was put into the care of the Protestant Orphan School, Parramatta, on 6 May 1867. He was discharged to the care of their mother in May 1869.
  • Foundation member of the Political Labor League, Redfern branch.
  • Served with Watchmen, Caretakers’ and Cleaners’ Union of NSW, joining 4 March 1910.
  • Was appointed justice of the peace in July 1913. Sometime alderman on Redfern Council. A member of the Manchester Unity Independent Order of Oddfellows Loyal Sydney Lodge.
  • In 1915 became first president of Federated Miscellaneous Workers Union. Was an active member of its board of management until his death, when he was working as a watchman, living at Lord Street, Newtown.
  • Cause of death enteric fever

Australian Worker
, 3 Oct. 1923, 14 Nov 1923, Federation News, Dec 1990; Beasley, 1996.

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Belpitt, John Charles (Charley) (1858–1923)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 24 June 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • Bulpit, John Charles

25 August, 1858
Ryde, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia


20 September, 1923 (aged 65)
Little Bay, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death

typhoid fever

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.

Key Organisations
Key Places
Political Activism