The company known as J Boag & Son (Boag's) was founded at the start of February 1883.

Claims that the date is 1881, or even 1853 are incorrect.

At about the same time as James Boag I and Son (James Boag II) formed the company they also bought the Esk Brewery. The business of that name was built and established by CS Button in 1881.

There is a wealth of information which proves those statements. A summary of that evidence is featured below.

Source Date Text
Launceston Examiner 26 Sept 1879 Advertisement


The business hitherto conducted by J GLENWRIGHT as brewer, etc., will in future be carried on under the style or firm of Glenwright and Boag (J Boag, late of John Fawn's brewery [JB II] ), who are now prepared to supply the public with a first-class article. Trusting to receive a fair share of support,
We are,
Yours truly, etc.,

Launceston Examiner 10 Jun 1882 From an article headed Town Improvements
Off William Street, and near the Queen's Wharf, Mr C S Button, the well-known brewer, has had erected a manufactory of respectable dimensions. The construction is one that quickly catches the attention of persons passing through its neighbourhood, and consists of a main building with a tower, together with a lean-to that forms a cordial manufactory.
...The whole manufactory speaks well for the enterprise of Mr C S Button, and the fittings are as complete as could be desired.
Launceston Examiner 3 Feb 1883 two advertisements near the bottom right corner of page 1:

One is headed NOTICE and indicates that the business partnership
of Glenwright and Boag had been dissolved.

The other is headed ESK BREWERY and provides notification
that J Boag and Son have purchased from Mr CS Button his plant
and premises in William Street, known as Esk Brewery.

The Tasmanian 10 Feb 1883 page 161 column 1 a general news story headed BUSINESS CHANGES.
That story notes that the Glenwright and Boag business had been
dissolved. later it comments: "Mr Jas. Boag, jun., has entered into
partnership with his father....and the new firm, who will trade under
the style of J Boag and Son, have purchased from Mr CS Button the
plant and premises known as the Esk Brewery, in William Street. The Esk Brewery, as most of our readers are aware, has only recently been built by Mr Button for his own use as a brewery and cordial manufactory, and has been fitted up in a most complete and compact manner upon modern principles, and contains the latest improvements for both branches of business. Both members of the new firm are well and favourably known in the trade, and will no doubt secure a fair share of public support.
Jubilee History of Tasmania 1887 states that Boag's began in 1883 and that the Esk Brewery on the same site had been established by C.S. Button in 1881.
CS Button's
- states that Boag's bought the business from him in 1883

document is held in the Clifford Craig collection (CHS 3) at the Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery, Launceston

Information below compiled from the Launceston rate assessment roll published in issues of the Hobart Town Gazette
on 21 Dec 1880, 2 Jan 1882, 1 Jan 1883 and 1 Jan 1884.

Properties in the area of William Street around Boag's Brewery are shown in the table below.

We know that J Boag & Son took over that brewery site from CS Button between November 1882 and November 1883. When used in conjunction with the other evidence outlined on this site, there can be no doubt that Boag's was established in 1883, not in 1881 or 1853.

Some of the websites and publications state in articles about the Boag's business that James Boag (senior) arrived in Launceston in 1853. That is true, but please note that relates to the person - not the company known as J Boag & Son.

Roll Signed
Description Rateable
Owner Occupier Date
29/11/1880 House 15 Ditcham, Button & Co. H Crawford 21/12/1880
29/11/1880 Store, wharf & timber-yard 50 Ditcham, Button & Co. Ditcham, Button & Co. 21/12/1880
29/11/1880 House and smithy 32 Estate of CJ Weedon G Knee 21/12/1880
31/10/1881 House 15 CS Button S Suckling 2/1/1882
31/10/1881 Brewery, wharf & offices 140 CS Button CS Button 2/1/1882
31/10/1881 House and blacksmith’s 32 Estate of CJ Weedon G Knee 2/1/1882
20/11/1882 House 15 CS Button S Parkinson 1/1/1883
20/11/1882 Brewery, office & stores 145 CS Button CS Button 1/1/1883
20/11/1882 House and smithy 32 CJ Weedon’s estate G Knee 1/1/1883
26/11/1883 House 15 J Boag & Son M Stedwell 1/1/1884
26/11/1883 Brewery, office & stores 135 J Boag & Son J Boag, sen. & J Boag, jun. 1/1/1884
26/11/1883 House and smithy 29 CJ Weedon’s estate Mrs Knee 1/1/1884