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Ashley, William Patrick

Labor Party Senator for New South Wales 1937–58. Postmaster-General (7 October 1941 – 2 February 1945), Minister for Information (7 October 1941 – 21 September 1943), Vice-President of the Executive Council (21 September 1943 – 2 February 1945) in the Curtin government, Minister for Supply and Shipping (2 February 1945 – 6 April 1948) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Minister for Shipping and Fuel (6 April 1948 – 19 December 1949) in the Chifley government.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 941.

Beasley, John (Jack) Albert

Member of the House of Representatives 1928–46 (West Sydney) for the Labor Party, except in 1931–36 when he was a member of the Lang Labor Party and 1940–41 when he was a member of the Anti-Communist Labor Party. He was assistant Minister for Industry (22 October 1929 – 3 March 1931) in the Scullin government, Minister for Supply and Development (7 October 1941 – 17 October 1942), Minister for Supply and Shipping (17 October 1942 – 2 February 1945), Vice-President of the Executive Council (2 February 1945 – 6 July 1945) in the Curtin government, Minister for Defence and Vice-President of the Executive Council (6–13 July 1945) in the Forde government, Minister for Defence (13 July 1945 – 15 August 1946) in the Chifley government. Beasley also served on the Advisory War Council 1940–45.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 84.

Bennett, Henry Gordon

Officer in the Australian Imperial Force during the 1914–18 war and the 1939–45 war, when he was in command at the fall of Singapore in February 1942.

Bjelke-Petersen, Johannes (Joh)

National/Country Party Queensland parliamentarian 1947–87, Premier of Queensland 1968–87.

Blamey, (Sir) Thomas Albert

An officer in the Australian Imperial Force in the 1914–18 war when he fought at Gallipoli, and the 1939–45 war when he had command in the Middle East, and was promoted to General. From 1942 he was commander-in-chief of the Australian Military Forces.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 66.

Boote, Henry Ernest

Labor journalist and author, founding editor of the Gympie Truth (1896–1902), the Queensland Worker (1902–11), and the Australian Worker (1914–43). A fervent anti-conscriptionist, Boote was a friend of Prime Ministers Andrew Fisher, James Scullin and John Curtin.

Bruce, (Lord) Stanley Melbourne

Member of the House of Representatives (Flinders) for the Nationalist Party 1918–29 and for the United Australia Party 1931–33. Treasurer (1921–23) during the Hughes government, Prime Minister 1923–29, Minister for External Affairs 1923–29, Minister for Health 1927–28, and Minister for Trade and Customs 1928. Bruce was honorary Minister in London 1932–33 during the Lyons government and High Commissioner in London 1933–45 during the Lyons, Page, Menzies, Fadden and Curtin governments.

Read more about Stanley Melbourne Bruce.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 23.

Calwell, Arthur Augustus

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1940–72 (Melbourne). Minister for Information (21 September 1943 – 19 December 1949) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Minister for Immigration (13 July 1945 – 19 December 1949) in the Chifley government. Leader of the Federal Parliamentary Labor Party 1960–67.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 82.

Cameron, Donald

Labor Party Senator for Victoria 1938–51. Minister for Aircraft Production (7 October 1941 – 2 February 1945), Minister Assisting the Minister for Munitions (7 October 1941 – 21 February 1942), Postmaster-General (2 February 1945 – 6 July 1945) in the Curtin government. Postmaster-General (6 July 1945 – 13 July 1945) in the Forde government. Postmaster-General (13 July 1945 – 19 December 1949) in the Chifley government.

Chifley, Joseph Benedict (Ben)

Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1928–31 and 1940–51 (Macquarie) and Prime Minister and Treasurer (13 July 1945 – 19 December 1949). Chifley was Minister for Defence 1931–32 in the Scullin government, Treasurer 1941–45 in the Curtin and Forde governments, and Minister for Postwar Reconstruction 1942–45.

Read more about Ben Chifley.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 268.

Collings, Joseph Silver

Labor Party Senator for Queensland 1932–50. Minister for the Interior (7 October 1941 – 13 July 1945) in the Curtin and Forde governments, Vice-President of the Executive Council (13 July 1945 – 1 November 1946) in the Chifley government.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 166.

Curtin, Elsie

Prime ministerial wife 1941–45.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 947.

Curtin, John Joseph

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1928–31 and 1934–45 (Fremantle), Prime Minister (1941–45), Minister for Defence Coordination (1941–42), and Minister for Defence (1942–45).

Read more about John Curtin.

 

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 258.

Dedman, John (Jack) Johnstone

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1940–49 (Corio). Minister for War Organisation of Industry (7 October 1941 – 19 February 1945) in the Curtin government, Minister in charge of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (7 October 1941 – 19 December 1949), Minister for Post-War Reconstruction (2 February 1945 – 19 December 1949) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Minister for Trade and Customs (29 April 1946 – 18 June 1946), Minister for Aircraft Production and Minister for Munitions (15 August 1946 – 1 November 1946), Minister for Defence (1 November 1946 – 19 December 1949) in the Chifley government.

Drakeford, Arthur Samuel

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1934–55 (Maribyrnong). Minister for Air and Minister for Civil Aviation (7 October 1941 – 19 December 1949) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Minister for the Navy (15 August 1946 – 1 November 1946) in the Chifley government.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 139.

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.

Evatt, Herbert (Doc) Vere

Evatt was a Justice of the High Court 1929–40, the youngest High Court judge. He was then Labor Party member of House of Representatives 1940–58 (Barton) and 1958–60 (Hunter) and Attorney-General and Minister for External Affairs (1941–49) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments. Evatt was Australian delegate to the conference founding the United Nations in San Francisco in 1945, and president of the General Assembly 1948–49. He was first president of Australia's Atomic Energy Commission in 1946. Leader of the federal parliamentary Labor Party, 1951–60, Evatt then returned to the bench as Chief Justice of New South Wales 1960–62.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 7.

Fadden, Arthur William

Country Party Member of the House of Representatives 1936–49 (Darling Downs) and 1949–58 (McPherson). Prime Minister and Treasurer August – October 1941. Fadden was acting Prime Minister January–May 1941, Minister for Air and Minister for Civil Aviation (14 August 1940 – 28 October 1940), minister without portfolio assisting the Treasurer (14 March 1940 – 14  August 1940), Minister Assisting the Treasurer (14 August 1940 – 28 October 1940), minister without portfolio assisting the Minister for Supply and Development (14 March 1940 – 13 August 1940), Minister Assisting the Minister for Supply and Development (14 August 1940 – 28 October 1940), Treasurer (28 October 1940 – 29 August 1941) in the first Menzies government. He again served as Treasurer (19 December 1949 – 10 December 1958) in the second Menzies government.

Read more about Arthur Fadden.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 714.

Fenton, James Edward

Member of the House of Representatives (Maribyrnong) for the Labor Party 1910–1931 and for the United Australia Party 1931–1934. Minister for Trade and Customs (22 October 1929 – 4 February 1931) in the Scullin government, Postmaster-General (6 January – 13 October 1932) in the Lyons government.

Forde, Veronica (Vera)

Prime ministerial wife 6–13 July 1945.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 936.

Fraser, James (Jim) Mackintosh

Labor Party Senator for Western Australia 1938–59. Minister for External Territories (7 October 1941 – 21 September 1943), Minister Assisting the Minister for Commerce (7 October 1941 – 17 October 1942), Minister Assisting the Minister for the Army and Minister Assisting the Minister for Supply and Development (21 February 1942 – 21 September 1943) in the Curtin government, Minister for Health and Minister for Social Services (21 September 1943 – 18 June 1946) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Minister for Trade and Customs (18 June 1946 – 1 November 1946) in the Chifley government.

Frost, Charles William

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1929–31 and 1934–46 (Franklin). Minister for Repatriation (7 October 1941 – 1 November 1946) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Minister in charge of War Service Homes (7 October 1941 – 13 July 1945) in the Curtin and Forde governments.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 331.

Gair, Vincent (Vince) Clare

Democratic Labor Party Senator for Queensland 1964–74. Gair was a Queensland parliamentarian 1932–60 and Labor Premier of Queensland 1952–57. After he was expelled from the Labor Party in 1957, his Queensland Labor Party joined with other splinter groups in 1962 to form the Democratic Labor Party. Gair was leader of the federal parliamentary Democratic Labor Party from 1964 until 1974, when he was appointed Ambassador to Ireland.

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.

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.

Gloucester (Duke of), Henry William Frederick Albert

Governor-General of Australia (30 January 1945 – 11 March 1947) during the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments. During his time in office he travelled extensively throughout Australia before returning to England to perform his official duties.

Hawke, Robert (Bob) James Lee

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1980–92 (Wills) and Prime Minister 1983–91.

Read more about Bob Hawke.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 390.

Hayden, William (Bill) George

Governor-General 1989–96. Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1961–88 (Oxley). Minister for Social Security (19 December 1972 – 6 June 1975), Treasurer (6 June 1975 – 11 November 1975) in the Whitlam government, Minister for Foreign Affairs (11 March 1983 – 24 July 1987), Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (24 July 1987 – 17 August 1988) in the Hawke government.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 626.

Haylen, Leslie (Les) Clement

Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1943–63 (Parkes). Haylen had been news editor of the Australian Women’s Weekly from 1933 until he joined the Daily Telegraph, being dismissed in 1943 when he became a Labor candidate.

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.

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.

Keane, Richard Valentine

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1929–31 (Bendigo), Senator for Victoria 1938–46. Vice-President of the Executive Council (7 October 1941 – 21 September 1943) in the Curtin government, Minister for Trade and Customs (7 October 1941 – 26 April 1946) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 179.

King, William Lyon Mackenzie

Liberal member of the Canadian parliament 1908–48, Canadian Prime Minister 1921–30 and 1935–48.

Lang, John (Jack) Thomas

Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1946–49 (Reid). Lang had been a New South Wales parliamentarian 1913–46 and was state Premier 1925–27. He formed a ‘Lang Labor’ splinter group that split the federal parliamentary party in the 1930s.

Lazzarini, Hubert Peter

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1919–31 and 1934–52 (Werriwa). A member of the Lang Labor Party 1934–36. Minister Assisting the Treasurer (7 October 1941 – 21 September 1943), Minister for Works (2 February 1945 – 6 July 1945) in the Curtin government, Minister for Home Security (7 October 1941 – 1 February 1946) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Minister for Works (6 July 1945 – 13 July 1945) in the Forde government, Minister for Works and Housing (13 July 1945 – 1 November 1946) in the Chifley government.

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.

MacArthur, Douglas

General in the United States Army appointed supreme commander of the South-west Pacific area 1942–45.

Makin, Norman John Oswald

Labor member of House of Representatives 1919–46 (Hindmarsh), 1954–55 (Sturt), and 1955–63 (Bonython). Speaker of House of Representatives 1929–32. Makin was Secretary to the federal parliamentary Labor Party 1934–41, and a member of the Advisory War Council 1940–45. In the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, he was Minister for the Navy and Minister for Munitions (7 October 1941 – 15 August 1946), Minister for Aircraft Production (2 February 1945 – 15 August 1946). Makin was Australia’s first Ambassador to the United States (4 September 1946 – 27 April 1951), and was awarded the Order of Australia in 1980.

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.

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.

Rodgers, Don

Press secretary to Prime Ministers John Curtin and Ben Chifley.

Ryan, Thomas Joseph

Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1919–21 (West Sydney), Ryan had been a Queensland parliamentarian 1909–21 and Premier 1915–19.

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.

Scully, William James

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1937–49 (Gwydir). Minister for Commerce (7 October 1941 – 22 December 1942) in the Curtin government, Minister for Commerce and Agriculture (22 December 1942 – 1 November 1946) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments, Vice-President of the Executive Council (1 November 1946 – 19 December 1949) in the Chifley government.

Shedden, (Sir) Frederick

Australia’s liaison officer in London 1932–36, and head of the Department of Defence 1937–56. Shedden accompanied Curtin, then Chifley, then Menzies on all major prime ministerial visits overseas in 1941, 1944, 1946, 1951 and 1955.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 320.

Spender, Percy Claude

Independent/United Australia Party/Liberal Party Member of the House of Representatives 1937–51 (Warringah). Vice-President of the Executive Council (26 January 1940 – 14 March 1940), minister without Portfolio assisting the Treasurer (26 April 1939 – 3 November 1939), Treasurer (14 March 1940 – 28 October 1940) in the first Menzies government; Minister for the Army (28 October 1940 – 7 October 1941) in the first Menzies and Fadden governments and a member of the Advisory War Council; Minister for External Affairs (19 December 1949 – 26 April 1951) in the second Menzies government. In 1950–51 Spender was vice President of the 5th United Nations General Assembly in New York, and was Australia’s Ambassador to the United States 1951–58. Spender was president of the International Court of Justice at The Hague in 1964–70.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 692.

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).

Street, Jessie Mary Grey

As a member of Australia’s delegation to the San Francisco conference that founded the United Nations in 1945, Street worked with central and south American women delegates to have the ‘equal opportunity’ Article 8 included in the Charter of the United Nations. With Scandinavian delegates, this group lobbied for the establishment of a Commission on the Status of Women and Street was Australia’s first representative on the Commission in 1947–48. Street was a key figure in lobbying for the 1967 referendum that removed discrimination against Aboriginal people from Australia’s Constitution.

Theodore, Edward Granville

Labor Member of the House of Representatives 1927–31 (Dalley), Treasurer (22 October 1929 – 9 July 1930) and (29 January 1931 – 6 January 1932) in the Scullin government. Theodore had been a Member of Queensland House of Assembly (1909–1925) and Premier (1919–25), and State President of the Amalgamated Workers Union (AWU) (1913–16). In 1932 he took over the AWU paper the World. With Frank Packer he published the first edition of the Australian Women’s Weekly in 1933, then with two Sydney newspapers they formed Consolidated Press. In 1942–44 Theodore was Director-General of Allied Works.

Ward, Edward (Eddie) John

Member of the House of Representatives (East Sydney) for the Labor Party in 1931, for the Lang Labor Party in 1932–36, and for the Labor Party 1936–63. Minister for Labour and National Service (7 October 1941 – 21 September 1943) in the Curtin government, Minister for Transport and Minister for External Territories (21 September 1943 – 19 December 1949) in the Curtin, Forde and Chifley governments.

Whitlam, Edward Gough

Labor Party Member of the House of Representatives 1952–78 (Werriwa). Prime Minister (5 December 1972 – 11 November 1975), Minister for Foreign Affairs, Treasurer, Attorney-General, Minister for Customs and Excise, Minister for Trade and Industry, Minister for Shipping and Transport, Minister for Education and Science, Minister for Civil Aviation, Minister for Housing, Minister for Works, Minister for External Territories, Minister for Environment, Aborigines and the Arts (5 December 1972 – 19 December 1972) in his first two-man ministry, Minister for Foreign Affairs (19 December 1972 – 6 November 1973), Minister for Environment (2 July 1975 – 14 July 1975).

Read more about Gough Whitlam.

National Archives of Australia Commonwealth Person CP 99.

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