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Fast facts: Ben Chifley

Personal profile

Joseph Benedict CHIFLEY

Born:

22 September 1885, Bathurst, New South Wales

Education:

Patrician Brothers high school, Bathurst (c.1899–c.1901)

Employment:

engine-driver

Memberships:

Roman Catholic Church; trades unions

Marriage:

6 June 1914, Glebe, Sydney

Children:

none

Died:

13 June 1951, Canberra

Buried:

Bathurst Cemetery

Honours:

Privy Councillor (1945)

Elizabeth Gibson CHIFLEY (née McKENZIE)

Born:

1 August 1886

Died:

9 September 1962

Political profile

Terms as PM:

13 July 1945 – 19 December 1949

Terms as MP:

House of Representatives: 6 February 1929 – 19 December 1931 and 20 November 1940 – 13 June 1951 (Macquarie)
Leader of the Opposition: 19 December 1949 – 13 June 1951

Portfolios:

Defence: 3 March 1931 – 6 January 1932
Treasurer: 7 October 1941 – 19 December 1949
Postwar Reconstruction: 22 December 1942 – 2 February 1945

Political memberships:

Abercrombie Shire Council (1933–47); Australian Labor Party

After:

Leader of the Opposition (19 December 1949 – 13 June 1951)

Quiz facts

  • became an engine-driver at 27
  • twice refused pre-selection, in a State election in 1922 and the 1937 federal election
  • refused to wear ceremonial clothes and became a Privy Councillor in his own suit
  • lost two elections (1931 and 1934) then won his seat back while in hospital in 1940
  • died two days after he was re-elected leader of the federal parliamentary Labor Party on 11 June 1951

Plus

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