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Abbott, Hilda Gertrude

Australian Red Cross Society worker in Egypt during the 1914–18 war and in the Northern Territory 1937–46, when her husband Charles Abbott was Administrator. In the 1950s Hilda Abbott was familiar to radio listeners for the programs she produced and presented.

Abbott, Charles Lydiard Aubrey

Country Party Member of the House of Representatives 1925–29 and 1931–37 (Gwydir), Abbott was Minister for Home and Territories (1–10 December 1928) and for Home Affairs (10 December 1928 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government. From 29 March 1937 – 26 May 1946 Abbott was Administrator of the Northern Territory; his wife Hilda Abbott was well known in community work in the Territory.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 30.

Amery, Leopold

British Conservative parliamentarian 1911–45. Secretary of State for the Colonies and Dominions 1925–1929. A strong supporter of preferential terms of trade within the Empire and closer ties between Britain and the Dominions.

Ataturk, Mustapha Kemal

Turkish soldier, nationalist and reformer, president of the Turkish republic 1923–38.

Atkinson, Llewellyn

Member of House of Representatives 1906–29 (Wilmot), Atkinson was a member of five political parties: Anti-Socialist (1906–10) Liberal (1910–17) Nationalist (1917–23) Country Party (1923–25) Nationalist (1925–29). He was Vice-President of Executive Council (9 February 1923 – 18 June 1926) in the Bruce-Page government, and a Tasmanian parliamentarian 1931–34.

Attlee, Clement Richard

Britain's Labour Prime Minister 1945–51 during the Chifley, Fadden and Menzies governments.

Baillieu, (Lord) Clive Latham

Melbourne-born London banker and businessman, friend of SM Bruce and active in government and business organisations 1920s–1950s.

Baldwin, Stanley

Britain's Conservative Prime Minister 1923–24 and 1924–29 during the Bruce–Page government, and 1935–37 during the Lyons government.

Bowden, Eric Kendall

Member of the House of Representatives (Nepean) for the Anti-Socialist Party 1906–10 and the Nationalist Party 1919–22. Nationalist Party Member of the House of Representatives (Parramatta) 1922–29. Minister for Defence (9 February 1923 – 16 January 1925) in the Bruce–Page government.

Brookes, (Sir) Herbert

Herbert Brookes served on the Commonwealth Board of Trade (1918–28) and the Tariff Board (1922–28). He was Commissioner-General to the United States (1929–30), and vice-chairman of the Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC) (1932–40). His wife, Ivy Brookes, was the eldest daughter of Pattie and Alfred Deakin. She was active in Deakin's Liberal Party and, from 1912 to 1940, was on the executive of the National Council of Women (Victoria).

Brookes, (Lady) Ivy

Eldest daughter of Pattie and Alfred Deakin, active in Deakin's Liberal Party and from 1912–40 was on the executive of the National Council of Women (Victoria), married to Herbert Brookes.

Bruce, (Lady) Ethel Dunlop

As prime ministerial wife 1923–29, Ethel Bruce was the first to live in The Lodge. Her alterations to the original design extended the southern wing of the building.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 931.

Carrodus, Joseph Aloysius

Head of the Department of the Interior 1935–50, Carrodus was first appointed to the new Commonwealth public service as a clerk in the Department of External Affairs on 11 August 1904. He served as private secretary to several Ministers for External Affairs including Deakin. After Army service in the 1914–18 war, Carrodus was head of the Papua New Guinea and Norfolk Island branch of the Department of Home and Territories in the 1920s.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 42.

Casey, (Lord) Richard Gardiner

Governor-General of Australia (22 September 1965 – 30 April 1969), during the governments of RG Menzies, Harold Holt, John McEwen and John Gorton. As Australian government liaison officer in London 1924–31, Casey was a trusted adviser to SM Bruce, resigning in the cutbacks introduced by James Scullin in 1931. He was a United Australia Party Member of the House of Representatives 1931–40 (Corio) and a Liberal Party Member of the House of Representatives 1949–60 (LaTrobe). Casey was assistant Treasurer (9 November 1934 – 3 October 1935), Minister in charge of development of Scientific and Industrial Research (29 November 1937 – 7 November 1938) in the Lyons government, and Treasurer (3 October 1935 – 26 April 1939) in the Lyons and Page governments. In 1941 John Curtin appointed Casey first Australian Minister to the United States, in 1942–43 he was a member of the British war cabinet, and from 1944–46 Governor of Bengal. In the Menzies government, Casey was Minister for Supply and Development (26 April 1939 – 26 January 1940 and 19 December 1949 – 17 March 1950), Minister for Works and Housing (19 December 1949 – 11 May 1951), Minister for National Development (17 March 1950 – 11 May 1951), Minister in charge of the CSIRO (22 March 1950 – 4 February 1960), Minister for External Territories (26 April 1951 – 11 May 1951), and Minister for External Affairs (26 April 1951 – 4 February 1960). In 1960 he was given a peerage, and became Baron Casey of Berwick, Victoria and the City of Westminster.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 24.

Chamberlain, (Sir) Joseph Austen

Conservative Member of the House of Commons 1892–1937, Britain's Foreign Secretary 1924–29 and the eldest son of Joseph Chamberlain.

Chapman, (Sir) Austin

Member of the House of Representatives (Eden–Monaro) for the Protectionist Party 1901–10, Deakin Liberal Party 1910–17, and Nationalist Party 1917–26. Minister for Defence in the first Deakin government (24 September 1903 – 27 April 1904), Postmaster-General (5 July 1905 – 30 July 1907) and Minister for Trade and Customs (30 July 1907 – 13 November 1908) in the second Deakin government. In the Bruce–Page government he was Minister for Trade and Customs and for Health (9 February 1923 – 26 May 1924). Chapman had been a strong federationist as a member of the New South Wales parliament (Braidwood) 1891–1901.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 709.

Charlton, Matthew

Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1910–28 (Hunter) and Leader of the Opposition 1922–28. Charlton was a delegate to the League of Nations in 1924. He had been a New South Wales parliamentarian 1903–10.

Cockerill, George

Melbourne Age journalist covering the federation campaign 1898–1901, and Federal parliament 1901–10. Cockerill became chief of staff on the Age and chief leader-writer 1914–26, from 1926–28 was editor-in-chief of the Sydney Daily Telegraph and from 1929–39 leader-writer for the Melbourne Herald. In 1928–29 Cockerill was employed by the Commonwealth Development and Migration Commission as chief of publicity.

Cook, (Sir) Joseph

Member of the House of Representatives (Parramatta) for the Free Trade Party 1901–06, the Anti-Socialist Party 1906–10, the Deakin Liberal Party 1910–17 and the Nationalist Party 1917–21. Cook was Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs (1913–14), Minister for Defence in the Deakin government (1909–10), Minister for the Navy (1917–20) and Treasurer (1920–21) in the Hughes government, and High Commissioner in London 1921–27.

Read more about Joseph Cook.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 611.

Coombs, Herbert (Nugget) Cole

Director-General of Postwar Reconstruction 1943–49, and Governor of the Commonwealth and Reserve Banks 1949–68, Coombs had been a Treasury official 1939–42 and Director of Rationing in 1942. After his retirement from the Public Service in 1968 he was chairman of the Australian Council for the Arts/Australia Council 1967–74, chairman of the Council for Aboriginal Affairs 1967–76 and second Chancellor of the Australian National University 1968–76.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 119.

Copland, (Sir) Douglas Berry

Pioneer Australian economist and foundation professor of commerce at the University of Melbourne 1924–44, Copland was adviser to the Commonwealth Development and Migration Commission in the 1920s. He chaired the committee of economists and state and federal treasury officials whose 1931 report to the Loan Council became the 'Premiers' plan' for economic management in the Depression, and was supported by JM Keynes. Copland was a delegate to the League of Nations in 1933 and adviser to the economic conference in London that year, and Commonwealth prices commissioner 1939–45. He was an economic adviser to Prime Minister John Curtin 1941–45. Copland was appointed Australian Minister to China in 1946, and High Commissioner to Canada 1953–56. In between, Copland was founding vice-chancellor of the Australian National University 1948–53.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 167.

Crawford, Thomas William

Nationalist/United Australia Party Senator for Queensland 1917–47 and honorary Minister (14 February 1923 – 29 November 1928) in the Bruce–Page government.

Cumpston, John Howard Lidgett

First Director-General of the Commonwealth Department of Health 1921–45.

Curzon, (Lord) George

British Foreign Secretary 1919–24 during the Hughes and Bruce–Page governments.

Deane, Percival (Percy) Edgar

Percy Deane was private secretary to Prime Minister WM Hughes in 1916–21, and secretary to the Australian delegation at the Versailles Peace Conference in 1919. One of the most influential Commonwealth government officials in the 1920s, he was permanent head of three departments: Prime Minister's Department (1921–29) and Department of External Affairs (1921–28) during the Bruce government, and Department of Home Affairs (1929–32) during the Scullin and Lyons governments.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 78.

Eden, Robert Anthony

Conservative British parliamentarian 1923–57, Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs 1931, Minister for League of Nations Affairs 1935, Secretary of State for War 1940, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs 1935–38, 1940–45, 1951–55, and Britain's Prime Minister 1955–57.

Edward VIII, King

Eldest son of George V and Queen Mary, succeeded to throne on death of George V in February 1936, abdicated in December 1936.

Eggleston, (Sir) Frederic William

Australian Minister to China in 1941 and Australian Minister to the United States 1944–46. He was a member of the Australian delegation at the Versailles peace conference that established the League of Nations in 1919 and the San Francisco peace conference establishing the United Nations in 1945. In 1933 he became the first chairman of the Commonwealth Grants Commission and from 1946–49 was adviser in the United States to the Department of External Affairs. With his wife Louise he had been a 'Deakinite' Liberal, and later a member of the Liberal Party founded by RG Menzies.

Fuller, (Sir) George Warburton

Member of the House of Representatives (Illawarra) for the Free Trade Party 1901–06, the Anti-Socialist Party 1906–10, and the Deakin Liberal Party 1910–13. Minister for Home Affairs in the third Deakin government (2 June 1909 – 29 April 1910). Fuller had been a NSW parliamentarian 1889–94 and Free Trader and he returned to state politics in 1915, serving as Premier from 1922–25.

Garran, (Sir) Robert Randolph

Appointed first head of the Attorney-General’s department and parliamentary draftsman on 1 January 1901, Garran remained in this post until 5 February 1932. He served the governments of ten prime ministers, Barton, Deakin, Watson, Reid, Fisher, Cook, Hughes, Bruce, Scullin and Lyons. As a young Sydney federationist in Barton’s circle, Garran had been secretary to the 1897–98 Constitutional drafting committee.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 396.

George V, King

Grandson of Queen Victoria, son of King Edward VII, as Duke of York opened first Commonwealth parliament in 1901, with Queen Mary British monarch 1910–36.

George VI, King

Son of George V and Queen Mary, as Duke of York opened first Parliament House Canberra in 1927, succeeded to throne on abdication of his brother Edward VIII, with Queen Elizabeth British monarch 1936–52.

Gibson, William Gerrand

Member of the House of Representatives 1918–29 and 1931–34 (Corangamite) and Senator for Victoria 1935–47. Postmaster-General in the Bruce–Page government (9 February 1923 – 22 October 1929). As the Victorian Farmers’ Union candidate, Gibson defeated Scullin in the Corangamite seat in 1918, and was a founding member of the Country Party in 1921.

Glasgow, (Sir) Thomas William

Nationalist Party Senator for Queensland 1920–32, Minister for Home and Territories (18 June 1926 – 2 April 1927) and for Defence (2 April 1927 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government. A former major-general in the Australian Army with distinguished service in the 1914–18 war, Glasgow became the first Australian High Commissioner to Canada 1939–45.

Griffin, Walter Burley

United States architect who, with Marion Mahoney Griffin, provided the original design for Australia’s national capital in 1913, but was removed as architectural director in 1920.

Groom, (Sir) Littleton Ernest

Member of the House of Representatives (Darling Downs) 1901–29 and 1931–36, Groom was Minister for Home Affairs and then Attorney-General (12 October 1906 – 13 November 1908) replacing Isaac Isaacs in the second Deakin government, Minister for External Affairs in the third Deakin government (2 June 1909 – 29 April 1910), and Minister for Trade and Customs in the Cook government (24 June 1913 – 17 September 1914). In the Hughes government he served as honorary Minister (17 February 1917 – 16 November 1917), Vice-President of the Executive Council (16 November 1917–27 March 1918), Minister for Works and Railways (27 March 1918 – 21 December 1921), and Attorney-General (21 December 1921 – 9 February 1923). In the Bruce–Page government he was Attorney-General (9 February 1923 – 18 December 1925), Minister for Trade and Customs and Minister for Health (29 May – 13 June 1924). From 1926–29 he was Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Gullett, (Sir) Henry Somer

Nationalist/United Australia Party Member of the House of Representatives 1925–40 (Henty), Minister for Trade and Customs (24 November 1928 – 22 October 1929). In the Bruce–Page government, in the Lyons government Minister for Trade and Customs (6 January 1932 – 14 January 1933), and minister without portfolio directing negotiations for Trade Treaties (12 October – 11 March 1937). Gullett accompanied SM Bruce to the Imperial Economic Conference in Ottawa in 1932. In the first Menzies government Gullett was Minister for External Affairs (26 April 1939 – 14 March 1940) and Minister for Information (12 September 1939 – 14 March 1940), and Vice-President of Executive Council (14 March 1940 – 13 August 1940), Minister in charge of Scientific and Industrial Research (14 March 1940 – 13 August 1940), and Minister Assisting the Minister for Information (14 March – 13 August 1940). Gullett had been an Australian war correspondent 1915–18. He was one of the three Cabinet ministers killed in an air crash at Canberra on 13 August 1940.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 530.

Hankey, (Sir) Maurice Pascal Alers

Secretary to the British Cabinet, secretary to the committee of Imperial defence and Clerk of the Privy Council 1918–38, secretary of the Imperial conferences of 1921, 1923, 1926, 1930 and 1937. The first Australian liaison officers in London, Richard Casey, Keith Officer and Frederick Shedden, worked closely with Hankey.

Henderson, Walter

Head of the External Affairs Branch of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet 1926–30. With Richard Casey in London, the mainstay of SM Bruce’s plan for developing Australian expertise and influence in foreign policy with a separate Department of External Affairs. Henderson resigned in 1930 when the cutbacks under the Scullin government meant his transfer from the branch.

Hill, William Caldwell

Member of House of Representatives 1919–34 (Echuca) and Minister for Works and Railways (8 August 1924 – 29 November 1928) in the Bruce–Page government. Hill was a founding member of the Country Party in Victoria.

Holloway, Edward (Jack) James

Made history when he unseated Prime Minister SM Bruce in 1929, and became Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1929–31 (Flinders) and 1931–51 (Melbourne Ports). He served as Minister for Labour and National Service (21 September 1943–19 December 1949) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments. Minister for Social Services and Minister for Health (7 October 1941 – 21 September 1943), Minister Assisting the Minister for Munitions (21 February 1942 – 21 September 1943) in the Curtin government.

Howse, (Sir) Neville Reginald

Nationalist Party member of House of Representatives 1922–29 (Calare), Minister for Defence and Minister for Health (16 January 1925 – 2 April 1927), honorary Minister (2 April 1927 – 24 February 1928), Minister for Home and Territories (24 February – 29 November 1928), and Minister for Health (24 February 1928 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government. A surgeon, Howse had been director of medical services for the Australian army in 1915 and had given evidence to the Dardanelles Commission in 1917. He was a member of Australia’s delegation to the League of Nations in 1923 and in 1925 he helped found the Federal Health Council, and in 1928, the College of Surgeons of Australasia.

Hughes, (Dame) Mary

Prime ministerial wife 1915–23.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 943.

Hughes, William Morris

Member of the House of Representatives 1901–17 (West Sydney), 1917–22 (Bendigo), 1922–49 (North Sydney) and 1949–52 (Bradfield). Hughes was a member of the Labor Party 1901–17, the Nationalist Party 1917–29, an ‘Independent Nationalist’ 1929–31, United Australia Party 1931–44, Liberal Party 1944–52. Prime Minister (1915–23), Hughes still holds the record as Australia’s longest serving parliamentarian. He was a Minister in the governments of Watson (1904), Fisher (1908–09, 1910–13 and 1914–15), Lyons (1932–39), Page (Attorney-General, Minister for Industry and Minister for External Affairs (7 April 1939 – 26 April 1939), Menzies (Attorney-General 26 April 1939 – 29 August 1941, Minister for Industry 26 April 1939 – 28 October 1940, Minister for the Navy 28 October 1940 – 29 August 1941), and Fadden (continuing as Attorney-General and Minister for the Navy 29 August 1941 – 7 October 1941). During the term of his own government he also served as Attorney-General (27 October 1915 – 21 December 1921), Minister for Trade and Customs (29 September 1916 – 14 November 1916), Minister for External Affairs (21 December 1921 – 9 February 1923). As a New South Wales parliamentarian 1894–1901 Hughes was a founding member of the Labor Party in New South Wales. He became a founding member of the Nationalist Party in 1917, the United Australia Party in 1931, and the Liberal Party in 1945.

Read more about William Morris Hughes.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 290.

Keynes (Lord), John Maynard

British economist. Lecturer in Economics at Cambridge (1908–15), editor of the Economic Journal (1912–45), author of The Economic Consequences of Peace (1919), A Treatise on Money (1930), and General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money (1936). His theories became the foundation of modern economics. After World War II he was closely involved in the Bretton Woods Conference that established the International Monetary Fund and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Kingsford Smith, (Sir) Charles Edward

Pioneering aviator who, with Charles Ulm, set a record for a round-Australia flight of 10 days and 5 hours in 1927, for the first trans-Pacific flight in 1928, and for an Australia–England flight in 1929. The pair formed Australian National Airways Ltd. In 1935 he was killed when his plane crashed on a flight from England to Australia.

Kingsmill, (Sir) Walter

Nationalist Senator for Western Australia 1923–35, President of the Senate 1929–1932 during the Scullin government. Kingsmill had been a Western Australian parliamentarian 1897–1922.

Kirwan, (Sir) John Waters

Free Trade Member of the House of Representatives 1901–03 (Kalgoorlie), and friend of Alfred Deakin. In 1904, he was the first to be given the title Honourable as a former federal parliamentarian. A newspaper editor, Kirwan had been active in the Western Australian goldfields campaign for federation and organised the 1899 petition to Queen Victoria. He was a member of the Western Australian parliament 1908–46.

Lane-Poole, Ruth

Interior designer for The Lodge and Government House, Yarralumla from 29 March 1926. Only Australian timbers were used, the chief adviser being Lane-Poole’s husband Charles, Inspector-General of Forests and appointed by the Bruce–Page government as first head of the new Australian Forestry School in Canberra in 1927. Ruth Lane-Poole had been contracted by the Federal Capital Commission after she had furnished several fashionable homes in Melbourne as a consultant to Myers Pty Ltd, and at the time she was a regular contributor to the new Australian Home Beautiful.

Latham, (Sir) John Greig

Nationalist/United Australia Party Member of the House of Representatives 1922–34 (Kooyong), Latham was Attorney-General (18 December 1925 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government, and from 6 January 1932 – 12 October 1934 in the Lyons government. He was Leader of the Nationalist Party Opposition 1929–31 during the Scullin government. From 1935 until 1952, Latham was Chief Justice of the High Court, with an interval in 1940–41 when he was Australian Minister to Japan. Latham had been a member of the Australian delegation to the Versailles peace conference in 1919.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 148.

Lyons, Joseph Aloysius

Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1929–31 and United Australia Party member 1931–39 (Wilmot), Postmaster-General and Minister for Works and Railways 1929–31 in the Scullin government, Prime Minister 1932–39, Treasurer 1932–35, Minister for Health, and Repatriation 1935–36. Lyons had been a Tasmanian parliamentarian 1909–28 and was state Premier 1923–28.

Read more about Joseph Lyons.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 254.

Macdonald, Ramsay

Labour member of the House of Commons from 1906, and Prime Minister of Britain’s first Labour government in 1924. Macdonald was also Prime Minister in 1929–35, during the Bruce, Scullin, and Lyons governments. He had visited Australia in 1906, and met both James Scullin and John Curtin at Labor gatherings in Victoria.

Marr, (Sir) Charles William Clanan

Nationalist/United Australia Party Member of the House of Representatives 1919–29 and 1931–43 (Parkes). Honorary Minister (16 February 1925 – 2 April 1927), Minister for Home and Territories (2 April 1927 – 24 February 1928), and honorary Minister (24 February 1928 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government. In the Lyons government Marr was Minister for Works and Railways (6 January – 12 April 1932), Minister in charge of Territories (6 January 1932 – 24 May 1934), Minister for Health (6 January 1932 – 12 October 1934), Minister for Repatriation (12 April 1932 – 12 October 1934), minister without portfolio (12 October – 9 November 1934), and honorary Minister in charge of the royal visit of Prince Henry the Duke of Gloucester (9 November – 31 December 1934). Marr was an enthusiast for the development of Canberra, and he was also involved in the establishment of the Legislative Council of Papua New Guinea, which he opened in May 1933. Marr had business interests in New Guinea and was a founder of Amalgamated Coffee Plantations there.

Massy-Greene, (Sir) Walter

Member of the House of Representatives for the Deakin Liberal Party 1910–17 and the Nationalist Party 1917–22 (Richmond). Nationalist Party Senator for New South Wales 1923–25 and 1926–38. Honorary Minister in charge of matters relating to price-fixing (27 March 1918 – 17 January 1919), Minister for Trade and Customs (17 January 1919 – 21 December 1921), Minister for Health (10 March 1921 – 5 February 1923), Minister for Defence (21 December 1921 – 5 February 1923) in the Hughes government, Minister Assisting the Leader of the Government in the Senate (6 January 1932 – 23 June 1932) and assistant Treasurer (6 January 1932 – 25 September 1933) in the Lyons government.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 170.

McCay, (Sir) James Whiteside

Protectionist Member of the House of Representatives 1901–06 (Corinella) and Minister for Defence in the government of GH Reid (18 August 1904 – 5 July 1905). McCay triggered the fall of JC Watson’s government on 12 August 1904, when his successful amendment to the Conciliation and Arbitration Bill demonstrated that Watson had lost majority support in the House of Representatives. He served on two select committees – on the Bonus for Manufactures Bill, and on Electoral Act Administration in 1904. McCay had been a Victorian parliamentarian 1895–1900. After losing his federal seat in the 1906 election McCay resumed a military career and was director of Intelligence 1909–13 and a major-general in the 1914–18 war. McCay was also a business adviser to the Bruce–Page government in the 1920s.

McDougall, Frank Lidgett

Economic adviser to the Australian High Commissioner in London during SM Bruce’s term of office (1923–29), and one of the founders of the League of Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation in 1935. McDougall had been chairman of the London agency of the Australian Dried Fruit Control Board from 1922 when Bruce appointed him economic adviser on agriculture in 1925. McDougall attended the 1923 Imperial conference and the Ottawa Conference in 1932, and was an Australian delegate to the League of Nations in 1929, and from 1934–37. A friend of David Rivett, McDougall was adviser on scientific and industrial research on food production in Australia.

McKenna, Francis (Frank) Joseph

Briefly assistant private secretary to Prime Minister Hughes, McKenna was appointed secretary of the Prime Minister's Office in Canberra in 1927. He was private secretary to Prime Minister Lyons 1933–35, and deputy secretary of the Prime Minister’s Department 1952–55.

McLachlan, Alexander John

Nationalist/United Australia Party Senator for South Australia 1926–44. Honorary Minister (29 August 1926 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government. In the Lyons government he was Vice-President of the Executive Council (6 January 1932 – 12 October 1934), Minister in charge of development of Scientific and Industrial Research (6 January 1932 – 29 November 1937), and Postmaster-General (12 October 1934 – 7 November 1938). As leader of the Australian delegation to the League of Nations in 1928, McLachlan defended Australia’s tariff, and signed the Kellogg–Briand pact on behalf of Australia.

McLaren, (Sir) John Gilbert

McLaren was Secretary to the Prime Minister’s Department and the Department of External Affairs 1929–32, then official secretary to the Commonwealth in London 1933–36. In 1934 he was acting High Commissioner for Australia in London. McLaren had joined the Commonwealth Public Service in 1901 and had been assistant Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Department 1919–21, and Secretary of the Department of Home and Territories 1921–28, when he was appointed a member of the Public Service Board.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 174.

Menzies, (Sir) Robert Gordon

United Australia Party/Liberal Party Member of the House of Representatives (Kooyong) 1934–66 and Prime Minister 1939–41 and 1949–66. During his terms as Prime Minister he also served as Treasurer (26 April 1939 – 14 March 1940), Minister for Defence Co-ordination (13 November 1939 – 29 August 1941), Minister for Trade and Customs (23 February 1940 – 14 March 1940), Minister for Information (14 March 1940 – 13 December 1940), Minister for Munitions (11 June 1940 – 28 October 1940), Vice-President of the Executive Council (7 March 1951 – 11 May 1951), Minister for External Affairs (4 February 1960 – 22 December 1961), Minister in charge of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (22 December 1961 – 16 February 1962). In the Lyons government Menzies had been Attorney-General (1934–39) and Minister for Industry (1934–39). In the Fadden government he was Minister for Defence Co-ordination (29 August 1941 – 7 October 1941). He had been a Victorian parliamentarian 1928–34.

Read more about Robert Menzies.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 54.

Murdoch, (Sir) Keith Arthur

Newspaper proprietor and founder of the Australian Journalists Association (1910), the cable service Australian Associated Press (1935), and Australian Newsprint Mills (1938). David Syme had given Murdoch a job on the Age newspaper in 1904, and in 1908 Alfred Deakin, then Prime Minister, provided him with letters of introduction in London. As Commonwealth parliamentary reporter for the Age 1910–12, he became a friend of Andrew Fisher and WM Hughes. Political correspondent for the Sydney Sun from 1912, he was transferred to London in 1915 and secretly reported to Fisher from Gallipoli on the mismanagement of the Anzac campaign. He was the only Australian journalist at the peace conference at Versailles in 1919, and returned to Melbourne as chief editor of the Herald in 1920. With financial support from Clive Baillieu and others, by 1935 he had acquired newspapers in Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, and eleven commercial radio stations. In 1940 RG Menzies appointed him wartime director-general of information, a short-lived post. He retired in 1949 and died in 1952, leaving his media holdings to his son Keith Rupert Murdoch.

Muscio, Mildred

A member of many political and welfare organisations including the National Council of Women (NSW) from 1922, the Lyceum Club and the Australian Red Cross Society, Muscio served on the Bruce–Page government’s Royal Commission on child endowment in 1928. She was an Australian delegate to the League of Nations in 1937 and received the Order of the British Empire in 1938.

Norman, (Baron) Montagu Collet

Governor of the Bank of England 1920–44; involved in re-negotiating payments on Australia’s overseas loans (1932–33) and later in financing Australia’s war effort.

Officer, (Sir) Frank Keith

Australian Ambassador in Paris (1950–55), Australian Ambassador in Nanking (1948–49), Australian representative in the Netherlands (1946–48), Australian representative in South East Asia (1946), Australian counsellor in the British Embassy, Washington (1937–40), the second Australian government liaison officer in London (1933–37), succeeding Richard Casey. Officer, a former British colonial official, had been recruited by Richard Casey for the External Affairs Branch in 1927, serving in Melbourne until 1933.

Ogden, James Ernest

Senator for Tasmania 1923–32, Ogden was a pioneer of the Tasmanian Labor Party. He was expelled in February 1925 and remained in the House as an Independent, then joined the Nationalist Party in 1928, serving as honorary Minister (29 November 1928 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government. Ogden had been a Tasmanian parliamentarian 1909–22.

Page, (Sir) Earle Christmas Grafton

Country Party Member of the House of Representatives 1919–61 (Cowper). Prime Minister 7–26 April 1939, Page was Treasurer and deputy Prime Minister in the Bruce–Page government (9 February 1923 – 22 October 1929), Minister for Commerce in the Lyons government (9 November 1934 – 26 April 1939) and also Minister for Health (29 November 1937 – 7 November 1938). Page was also Minister for Commerce (28 October 1940 – 7 October 1941) in the first Menzies and Fadden governments, and Minister for Health (19 December 1949 – 11 January 1956) in the Menzies government.

Read more about Earle Page.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 715.

Paterson, Thomas

Country Party Member of the House of Representatives 1922–43 (Gippsland), Minister for Markets and Migration (18 June 1926 – 19 January 1928), Minister for Markets (19 January – 10 December 1928) and Minister for Markets and Transport (10 December 1928 – 22 October 1929) in the Bruce–Page government, and Minister for the Interior (9 November 1934 – 29 November 1937) in Lyons government. The ‘Paterson Plan’, a bounty for export butter, operated from 1926–33 giving £20 million to the depressed dairy industry.

Pearce, (Sir) George Foster

Senator for Western Australia 1901–38, Pearce was a member of the Labor Party 1901–17, the Nationalist Party 1917–31, and the United Australia Party 1931– 38. He was Minister of Defence in the three governments of Andrew Fisher (13 November 1908 – 2 June 1909; 29 April 1910 – 24 June 1913 and 17 September 1914 – 27 October 1915). In the Hughes government he was Minister for Defence (27 October 1915 – 21 December 1921) and Minister for Home and Territories (21 December 1921 – 9 February 1923). With Hughes, Pearce left the Labor Party over the conscription issue in 1917 and formed the Nationalist Party. In the Bruce–Page government Pearce was Minister for Home and Territories (9 February 1923 – 18 June 1926), and Vice-President of the Executive Council (18 June 1926 – 22 October 1929). From 1929 to 1931 Pearce led Opposition members in the Senate, he was then Minister for Defence (6 January 1932 – 12 October 1934), Minister for External Affairs and Minister for Territories (12 October 1934 – 29 November 1937), in the Lyons government. In 1939 Pearce was a member of the Commonwealth Grants Commission.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 151.

Pratten, Herbert Edward

Nationalist Senator for New South Wales 1917–21, Nationalist Member of the House of Representatives 1921–22 (Parramatta) and 1922–28 (Martin), Minister for Trade and Customs (13 June 1924 – 7 May 1928) and Minister for Health (13 June 1924 – 16 January 1925) in the Bruce–Page government. Pratten had been a Sydney businessman, from 1889 a softdrinks manufacturer, a printer and a pioneer jam maker. He developed interest in goldmining, and in tin mining in Malaya. He gave up his businesses when he became a member of parliament in 1917.

Rivett, (Sir) Albert Cherbury David

Founding chief executive officer of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (later CSIRO) 1927–46 and chairman 1946–49.

Ryrie, (Sir) Granville de Laune

Liberal/Nationalist Party Member of the House of Representatives 1911–22 (North Sydney) and 1922–27 (Warringah). Assistant Minister for Defence and honorary Minister (4 February 1920 – 21 December 1921) in the Hughes government, High Commissioner in London 1927–32, member of Australian delegation to League of Nations 1927, 1928 and 1929. Ryrie had been a New South Wales parliamentarian 1906–10.

Scullin, James Henry

Member of the House of Representatives 1910–13 and 1922–49 (Yarra). Prime Minister, Minister for External Affairs and Minister for Industry 1929–32, Treasurer 1930–31.

Read more about James Scullin.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 63.

Shepherd, Malcolm Lindsay

First head of the Department of the Prime Minister 1911–21; official secretary to the High Commissioner in London 1921–27; and head of the Department of Defence 1927–37. Shepherd had been recruited to the new Commonwealth Postmaster-General’s Department in 1901 from the New South Wales department he had joined as a typist in 1890. In 1904 he became private secretary to Alfred Deakin, then to prime ministers JC Watson, George Reid, and Andrew Fisher. He became a friend of WM Hughes, and while at the High Commission was Australian representative on the Pacific Cable Board and the Imperial War Graves Commission.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 25.

Stewart, Percy Gerald

Country Party member of House of Representatives 1919–31 (Wimmera), Minister for Works and Railways (9 February 1923 – 5 August 1924) in the Bruce–Page government, and president of the River Murray Commission 1923–24. Stewart had been a Victorian parliamentarian 1917–19 and was a foundation member of the Country Party. He turned the first sod on the Parliament House site in Canberra on 28 August 1923.

Stirling, Alfred Thorpe

Private Secretary to Attorney-General, RG Menzies (1934–36), Assistant External Affairs Officer in London (1936), External Affairs Officer in London (30 April 1937 – 12 July 1945). Stirling was High Commissioner in Ottawa (13 July 1945 – 12 January 1947), Minister in Washington (13 January 1947 – 10 April 1948), High Commissioner in Pretoria and Cape Town (23 August 1948 – 17 May 1950), Ambassador at The Hague (1950–6 March 1955), and Ambassador in Paris (20 May 1955 – 16 February 1959), in Manila (6 July 1959 – 14 August 1962), in Rome (25 September 1962 – 7 November 1967), and in Athens (7 May 1964 – 20 June 1965).

Stonehaven (Lord), John Baird

Governor-General of Australia 8 October 1925 – 22 January 1931 during the Bruce–Page government, formerly Conservative British parliamentarian (1910–25).

Syme, David

Newspaper proprietor and editor of the Melbourne Age newspaper 1860–1901, David Syme was a mentor and close friend of Alfred Deakin. His intervention was crucial in resolving the ‘Hopetoun blunder’ and ensuring Edmund Barton became first Prime Minister. His son Geoffrey Syme succeeded him as editor from 1908–42.

Symon, (Sir) Josiah Henry

Free Trade/Anti-Socialist Party Senator for South Australia 1901–13, and Attorney-General in the Reid government (18 August 1904 – 5 July 1905). Symon had been a South Australian parliamentarian and federalist, and delegate to the 1897–98 federal convention. In 1930, as president of the Adelaide Branch of the Royal Empire Society, he was a leading opponent of JH Scullin’s appointment of Sir Isaac Isaacs as Governor-General.

Watson, John Christian (Chris)

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1901–06 (Bland) and 1906–10 (South Sydney), Watson was first Labor Prime Minister, and Treasurer, for four months in 1904.

Read more about Chris Watson.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 711.

Wilson, (Sir) Reginald Victor

Nationalist Party Senator for South Australia 1920–26, Honorary Minister (9 February 1923 – 16 January 1925), Minister for Markets and Migration (16 January 1925 – 18 June 1926) in the Bruce–Page government, and also a member of Royal Commission on Cockatoo Island Dockyard (1921), Member of Wireless Agreement Committee (1921–22), member of the Board of Trade 1925–1926, Commissioner for the Australian section, British Empire Exhibition, 1923–24. A member of the Country Party, Wilson emphasised the role of Senate as the states’ House.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 184.

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