A brief history of bricks and convicts

It wasn’t long after the first fleet arrived in Sydney that bricks were being made by convicts. In fact, a site in Darling Harbour is thought to be the first site of a brick making facility in our city by the harbour.

Bricks made by convicts will often have a special mark on them, like an arrow or a diamond.

Transport costs were a problem even back in the late 1700’s and property owners who lived out from the city used to engage convicts to come and hand make bricks and dry them in the sun, rather than having the expense of transporting them from the factory.

Melbourne Brick has been in the brick business for thirty years this year, and whilst brick dust is in our veins, we can’t claim a history this long. But as always we’re interested in hearing about the history of these amazing and popular building materials.

Here in Melbourne some of the early bricks made in the City Brick facility, on the site of our Glen Iris store, feature names of the surrounding suburbs – so if you ever find an old brick with a suburb name on it, chances are it came from those kilns.

On another note, our marketing team has a connection to bricks too – with their grandfather being the head engineer of the state brickworks in Homebush in Sydney. Many of the post war bricks were fired in kilns that he built.

Melbourne Brick has been an Australian, family owned company since 1988. 
Where possible we source or make our products here in Australia to support local jobs and communities. This includes 90% of our synthetic grass, Melbourne Stone Pavers, Timberstone and many many more products and brands.

If you love bricks as much as we do, come and see our huge range in one of our display superstores, or check out our website for more information.