Daniel Hogan

The first staff member appointed to manage the Paddington Public Library service was Daniel Hogan, who added this role to his position and duties as Deputy Town Clerk of the municipality. This was not an uncommon arrangement among Councils which formed libraries under the 1867 Municipalities Act, and an understandable economy in the context of accommodating the cost of a new service within existing funding and revenue streams. The first council to establish a Library under the 1867 Municipalities Act, the Council for the Municipality of Newton, placed its Town Clerk, the most senior executive of the organisation, in charge.

At Paddington, Daniel Hogan carried out the administrative tasks of setting up the library - managing the purchase of stock, equipping and organising the reading room, arranging the printing of a catalogue and the adoption of by-laws. After the opening of the service he continued to oversee the day-to-day matters of its running, eventually assisted by the Inspector of Nuisances, who for some time added 'Assistant Librarian' to his other additional role, as 'Collector of Rates'.1

By late 1892, Mr Hogan, already the Deputy Town Clerk and Librarian, was also acting in the role of Town Clerk, as a result of the removal of his superior, who had been committed for trial on charges of embezzlement. 2 Subsequently, Daniel Hogan was under serious consideration by Council for permanent appointment to the vacant position, had it not been for his youth and comparative inexperience. 3 This confidence was a strong endorsement of his competency.

In November 1893, Council gave thought to the temporary appointment of an assistant for Mr Hogan, who might be exclusively assigned for Library duties, considering that an ‘elderly man' would be a suitable candidate for the tasks, at pro rata of a salary of £30 per annum’.4

However it was not until 1897 that the Paddington aldermen took the decision of relieving Daniel Hogan of all his additional duties as Librarian, substituting that arrangement by employing a salaried person whose time could be dedicated to the role. 5 This step may have been prompted by the report of a stock-take a few weeks earlier, which had ‘revealed no fewer than 292 books reported as missing and unreturned during the five and a half years the library had been established.’6

Daniel Hogan received considerable praise for his early work in implementing the Council's plans for a Library 7 and continued in Paddington's employ for a further four years as Deputy Town Clerk until offered the position of Town Clerk at Manly. He was presented with a marble clock by the aldermen of Paddington to mark their regard and their gratitude for his sixteen years of 'faithful' service.8

1 'Retrenchment at Paddington.’ The Daily Telegraph 12 May, 1894 p. 6.

2 The Police Courts." The Daily Telegraph 19 October 1892 p. 6; 'Metropolitan Quarter sessions', The Sydney Morning Herald 25 November, p. 3.

3 "Paddington Council Clerk." Evening News (Sydney, NSW : 1869 - 1931) 12 November 1892: 7.

4 'Municipal.', The Daily Telegraph 25 November, 1893 p. 14.

5 'Paddington.', The Sydney Morning Herald 28 August, 1897 p. 10.

6 The Australian Star 11 August, 1897 p. 3.

7 Freeman’s Journal 9 October, 1897, p. 20.

8 The Sydney Morning Herald 26 November, 1901 p. 4.