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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Annie Roberts, 1878

George Baird Shaw

watercolour on paper (mount: 37.1 cm x 31.8 cm)

Charles Warman Roberts (1821–1894), publican, was born in Sydney, the eldest son of free settler parents who emigrated to Australia in 1821. After working as a clerk in the colonial public service, Roberts’s father became the licensee of two Sydney pubs. Roberts followed his father into the hotel business and around 1853 purchased from his brother the license for a hotel called the Crown & Anchor, situated on the south east corner of George and Market Streets in Sydney.

He married Annie Edensor Marsden (1824–1895) in Sydney in June 1845. The eldest of their eight children, Charles James Roberts (1846–1925), took over management of the Crown & Anchor from 1867 until 1887, when Charles Warman Roberts again became its licensee. In 1888, the hotel was rebuilt as the luxury Roberts Hotel – ‘a most imposing structure of five storeys’ that was ‘replete with every modern improvement’. Charles and Annie Roberts resided at a number of addresses in the eastern suburbs before settling, in 1874, in a house in Rose Bay named The Ferns, later known as Fernleigh Castle. The Roberts Hotel operated until 1919 when it was destroyed by fire. The site was sold to Farmer’s & Co and later became famous for the Gowings emporium built there in the 1920s.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Reg, Lesley, Glen and Paul Thoms 2011

Accession number: 2011.30

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

George Baird Shaw (age 66 in 1878)

Annie Edensor Roberts (age 54 in 1878)

Subject professions

Migration and colonisation

Donated by

Lesley Thoms (2 portraits)

Reg Thoms (2 portraits)

Related portraits

1. Charles Warman Roberts, 1878. All George Baird Shaw.

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.