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Faulding, Francis Hardy 1816-1868

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Born: 1816 [Swinefleet, Yorkshire, England]

Died: 19 November 1868 [Adelaide, South Australia]

Pharmacist, Pharmaceutical manufacturer

Faulding arrived in Sydney in 1842 having served as surgeon on the emigrant ship Nabob. He established a pharmacy in Rundle Street, Adelaide, in May 1845, importing some of his stock of pharmaceuticals and chemicals from England, but also manufacturing his own supplies. He sold medicines, veterinary drugs and preparations, perfumes and sundries. The business was a success despite the economic hardships of the time and by 1850 Faulding employed 'travelling salesmen' to go about the colony with samples of the company's merchandise.

In 1861, Faulding went into partnership with Luther Scammell and the company FH Faulding & Co. wholesale druggists and manufacturing chemists was created. He left the day to day running of the business to Scammell, but Faulding kept up with recent medical discoveries - for example, after reading of the English surgeon Joseph Lister's success in minimising the risk of infection after surgery with the use of antiseptics, FH Faulding & Co. began manufacturing antiseptics. The company's flagship product in this area was 'Solyptol', an antiseptic based on eucalyptus oil. Faulding also sold chloroform and cocaine preparations - both legitimately used for medicinal purposes at the time.

Faulding became a prominent business leader in Adelaide as a result of his successful business, but also because of his successful property speculations which secured his prosperity. He served on the Adelaide City Council and was made a trustee of the Savings Bank of South Australia in 1861 and made director of the Bank of Adelaide in 1867.

Key achievements

May 1845: Opened pharmacy in Rundle Street, Adelaide

1861: Took Luther Scammell into partnership and established firm of FH Faulding & Co.

1861-63: Member of Adelaide City Council

1862: Became member of the Adelaide Chamber of Commerce

1864: Began producing olive oil from South Australian olives

1865: Made a director of the Bank of Adelaide

1867: Made trustee of the Savings Bank of South Australia

1867: Began production of antiseptics

Did you know?

A Faulding medicine chest was taken on John McDouall Stuart's expedition to cross Australia (1861-62).

Further reading

A century of medical progress, 1845-1945 : in association with F.H. Faulding & Co. Ltd, [Adelaide?] : F.H. Faulding & Co., [1945]

Donovan, Peter and Ed Tweddell. The Faulding formula : a history of F.H. Faulding & Co. Limited, Kent Town, S. Aust. : F.H. Faulding & Co. in association with Wakefield Press, 1995


Australian Dictionary of Biography Online: Search for Francis Faulding

Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre: Technology in Australia 1788-1988: See Table of Contents: Chapter 9: Pharmaceuticals

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