lithographer, painter and engineer, was born in Ruthin, Denbighshire, Wales, son of Daniel Jones, a builder, and his wife, Mary. Trained in the provinces, Jones gained knowledge of surveying, engineering, and drafting plans, particularly railway sections. After coming to Melbourne he was employed for a time by Thomas Ham as a lithographer. Early in 1853 he did some lithographic work for the Department of Public Lands and in June was placed in charge of the lithographic branch of the Surveyor General’s Department. Difficulties arose with the supervision of older and more experienced staff, and Jones was dismissed in October 1857 for a breach of discipline following an exchange of blows with a staff member. He then acted as a freelance draughtsman and was briefly in an architectural partnership with John O’Flanagan at 49 Collins Street West, until appointed lithographic draughtsman in the Railways Department in January 1859. He transferred to the Water Supply Department in December 1865.

In 1870 Jones spent a short time in Fiji before returning to Melbourne. In the early 1870s he attended lectures in engineering at Melbourne University and passed the examinations for municipal surveyor. He returned to the Railways Department as a draughtsman in January 1872, a position he held until his appointment as city engineer to the City of Sydney in February 1879. This period with the Sydney City Council was unhappy; he was suspended in October 1886, reinstated in December and suspended again in March 1888. Since he had just gained the appointment of engineer with the Metropolitan Board of Works, he then resigned from the council staff. At the end of 1893 Jones resigned from this last position too, owing to failing eyesight; he had lost the sight of one eye some years earlier. He had married Harriet, eldest daughter of James Goldie, at Richmond, Victoria, on 11 April 1861. She predeceased him on 17 January 1900 and he is believed to have died at North Sydney a short time later.

Little is known of Jones as an artist. His earliest recorded work is a lithograph dated 1858 of the District Survey Office, Taradale. His sojourn in Fiji resulted in the publication of at least one lithographic view of the island of Ovalau (Mitchell Library) annotated 'sketched on board the Jas. Patterson, Str 1870’ and 'Printed for private distribution only, 22 April 1875’. In November 1875 two of his watercolours of the Victorian waterworks at Clunes were sent to the Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition and he lithographed the accompanying plans. That March he had been elected a member of the Victorian Academy of Arts. At the academy’s exhibitions of 1875, 1876 and 1878 he exhibited a total of eight watercolours and one oil painting, mostly of rural scenery. He resigned his membership in July 1879 following his move to Sydney. Throughout the 1870s he gave lectures on behalf of worthy causes and illustrated them with extempore drawings. At Sydney in 1884 'some spirited sketches’ by Mr Trevor Jones were exhibited at the gallery of John Sands, the printer.

Darragh, Thomas A.
Date written:
Last updated: