A time capsule with a calico copy of the “Barrier Miner”, the “Weekly Herald”, “Tocsin”, “Barrier Daily Truth”, and “Worker”, copies of the rules of the A.M.A., Hibernians and some pennies were place beneath the foundation stone
The first section of the building was completed without delay and on January 12 1899; The Hall was officially opened on January 11, 1898, although not completed, with a ball and supper, which were very well attended.
The proceeds of the ball amounted to close to £ 50, and the money was handed over as a donation to the building fund.
Taken from Barrier Daily Truth January 14th 1899
Opening of the Trades Hall.
The opening began with a procession consisting of the A.M.A., A.W.U and associated bands, and was led by Alderman Wright on horseback. This followed the normal Eight Hours procession route and was met by a large crowd in front of the Hall.
Alderman Wright presided. R. Hawkins read a concise financial statement and then Mrs. Woodman was introduced. She congratulated all efforts to raise money and thanked all who helped. Then, armed with the key, she formally opened the building.
The interior was gay, being decorated with flags, bunting banners and large mirrors.
Mrs. Woodman's gown was of black grenadine.
‘Supper was laid in a large room adjacent to the ballroom and the constant stream of visitors testified to the good things provided. Outside, the Benefit Bar was liberally patronized, Mr. And Mrs. Harris and a large staff of assistants being busily employed all night.
The piano, a Wertheim, was manipulated by Mr. Morris, while Mr. Colley acted as M.C. The lengthy program was scrupulously adhered to and daylight had arrived before the happy dancers dispersed.
The cost of the first section of the building was £ 1700 and at the time the Hall was officially opened
The project having been started, a board of Trustees was appointed, the Delegates being chosen from nine societies and, the management of the Hall was entrusted in the hands of that board, under the conditions of the Trades Hall Site Act passed in 1898. These trustees held their first meeting on January 13 1899 , when the following officers were elected-
Chairman Jabez Wright
Vice Chairman P. Scully
Treasurer S. McCann
Secretary J. Bannerman
Committee P. Riley
Mr. McKirdy resigned after the first meeting and Mr. Sam Jackson was elected in his place.
These committeemen represented the following Societies-
J. Wright Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners
W. Wise Amalgamated Mining Association – Barrier Division
A.J. Eglinton Journeymen Butchers Association
S.M. Jackson Amalgamated Society of Engineers
P. Riley Operative Bricklayers and Masons
J. Bannerman Barrier Ranges Engine Driver's and Fireman's Association
S. McCann Australian Workers Union
P. Scully Barrier District Australian Labor Federation
J.D. Robertson Typographical Society