Garlick’s Office Equipment

Garlick’s Office Equipment


John Garlick moved to South Africa in 1872 where he founded the department store that was known as Garlick’s. In 1875 he opened his first store called J.Garlick selling “General Drapery, Hosiery, Haberdashery, Millinery, Boots, etc, etc” in Cape Town. He eventually expanded with branches in Kimberley, Johannesburg and Pretoria.

Business grew rapidly, he expanded into the wholesale business supplying merchandise to many stores such as John Orr, Spracklens and Markhams. Early in the 1880s he imported machinery and created a  very successful boot-making factory. His furniture store, initially in the name H.E. Richold became Garlick’s Furniture Store. Bicycles and Typewriters were imported and separate businesses created to manage these agencies.The cycle store became Garlicks Motor and Cycle Supply importing the first car to Cape Town and expanding the range of sole agencies for cycles to include cars and motor bikes.

The Remington Typewriter Agency developed into Garlicks Office Equipment and finally became Garlicks Office Machines, a thriving company operating quite separately from the department stores.

There were two offices in Rhodesia, one in Bulawayo and another in Umtali. There was also a branch of Garlick’s Wholesale business in Bulawayo, opened in 1895, managed by a Scot named George Fortune, who started with Garlick in Cape Town in 1889. Fortune remained in charge in Bulawayo until his death in May 1936.


  • The Garlick Papers, University of Cape Town
  • The Rhodesia Herald (1910-11)
  • Sherry Garlick Stanton
  • Walter Herdzik
  • James Gavin