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DICTIONARY OF AUSTRALIAN BIOGRAPHY
Angus and Robertson--1949
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MACALISTER, ARTHUR (1818-1883),premier of Queensland,
was born in 1818 at Glasgow, Scotland. He emigrated to Australia in 1850, and settled in the Moreton Bay district, then part of New South Wales. He practised as a solicitor, took part in the movement for separation, and was elected a representative for Ipswich in the New South Wales parliament. When the new colony of Queensland was founded in 1859, he was elected to the first parliament as member for his old district and was made chairman of committees. In March 1862 he joined the Herbert (q.v.) ministry as secretary for public lands and works, and when Herbert resigned on 1 February 1866, became premier. His ministry only lasted until 20 July 1866, when he resigned owing to the governor, Sir George Bowen (q.v.), refusing to sanction a proposed issue of "inconvertible government notes". Bowen called on Herbert to form a new ministry which immediately carried an act authorizing the issue of exchequer bills. This carried the colony through a financial crisis caused by the failure of the Agra and Masterman's bank, which had arranged a loan for railway extensions. Herbert had to leave for England almost at once, a reconstruction of the ministry was made, and Macalister again became premier on 7 August 1866. He resigned a year later and was again elected chairman of committees When Charles Lilley (q.v.) became premier in November 1868, Macalister took office as secretary for public lands and works, and for the goldfields. This ministry resigned in May 1870 and in November Macalister was elected speaker. He lost his seat in June 1871 but was re-elected for Ipswich in 1873. He formed his third ministry in January 1874 and resigned in June 1876 to become agent-general for Queensland in London. His health failing in 1881 he resigned his office as agent-general, and was granted a pension of £500 a year. He died on 23 March 1883. He was created C.M.G. in 1876.
Macalister was a ready speaker and a capable and energetic politician, who was always in a prominent position in the early days of Queensland politics.
P. Mennell, The Dictionary of Australasian Biography; C. A. Bernays, Queensland Politics During Sixty Years; G. F. Bowen, Thirty Years of Colonial Government; Our First Half-Century, a Review of Queensland Progress; The Times, 24 March 1883.
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MACARTHUR, SIR EDWARD (1789-1872),lieutenant-general,
eldest son of John Macarthur (q.v.), and his wife Elizabeth, was born at Bath, England, in 1789. He arrived at Sydney with his parents in 1790 and returned to England to be educated in 1799. He came to Australia again at the beginning of 1807, and apparently took part with his father in the deposition of Bligh, as Bligh, in his dispatch to Viscount Castlereagh of 30 April 1808, requested that "two of the rebels Charles Grimes and Edward Macarthur who have gone home in the Dart may be secured, in order to be tried in due time". On Macarthur's arrival in England he entered the army as an ensign in the 60th regiment, and in the following year was promoted to the rank of lieutenant. He fought with distinction in the peninsular war and in France and in 1820 became a captain. In 1824 he paid a visit of 10 months to Australia, and after his return to England was for some years secretary to the lord chamberlain. In 1826 he was promoted to the rank of major and in 1837 he was on the staff in Ireland. He evidently retained his interest in Australia, as on 3 July 1839 he addressed a long communication to the Right Hon. H. Labouchère, suggesting that regular lines of steamers should be established in Australia to trade between the various ports. This was referred to the governor, Sir George Gipps (q.v.), who in May 1840 replied that government aid was unnecessary, as a large company had been formed to establish a line of steamers of which James Macarthur (q.v. [under entry for John Macarthur]) was chairman. In August 1840 he made a protest against the regulations that persons desiring to take up land in the Port Phillip district should have to proceed to Melbourne where all charts of land were kept for public inspection. He was made a lieutenant-colonel in 1841 and afterwards went to New South Wales as deputy adjutant general. He became colonel in 1854, and was appointed commander-in-chief of H.M. forces in Australia in 1855. On 1 January 1856, after the death of Sir Charles Hotham (q.v.), he became lieutenant-governor of Victoria for 12 months. He was created a K.C.B. in 1862, returned to London, and died there on 4 January 1872. He had married in 1862 Sarah, daughter of Lieut.-colonel Neill, who survived him without issue.
Burke's Colonial Gentry; Historical Records of Australia, ser. I, vols. VI and XX; S. Macarthur Onslow, Some Early Records of the Macarthurs of Camden; H. G. Turner, A History of the Colony of Victoria, vol. II.
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MACARTHUR, JOHN (1767-1834),pioneer and founder of the wool industry,
was born in 1767 near Plymouth, Devonshire. His father, Alexander Macarthur, had fought for Prince Charles Edward in 1745, and after Cullodon had fled to the West Indies. Some years later he returned to England and established a business at Plymouth. His son John was educated at a private school and entered the army in 1782 as an ensign, but having been placed on half pay in 1783, went to live at Holsworthy in Devonshire. He spent some time in study and thought of reading for the bar, but in 1788 was in the army again and, about this time, married Elizabeth, daughter of a country gentleman named Veale. In June 1789 he was appointed a lieutenant in the New South Wales Corps. He sailed for Australia on 14 November 1789 in the Neptune with his wife and child and immediately quarrelled with the captain with whom he fought a duel, without injury to either, at Plymouth. After a long and trying voyage the Neptune arrived at Port Jackson on 28 June 1790. Mrs Macarthur was the first educated woman to arrive in Australia, and for some time was the only woman received at the governor's table. Later on in this year Macarthur was involved in a dispute with his brother officer, Captain Nepean. The details have been lost, but a court-martial could not be held on account of the absence of some of the other officers. The matter was patched up and the two men became reconciled. In February 1793, during the administration of Francis Grose (q.v.), Macarthur was appointed an inspector of public works and received his first grant of land, 100 acres adjoining the site of Parramatta. An additional grant of 100 acres was made in April 1794. He was promoted captain between June and October 1795. On 25 October Governor Hunter (q.v.), in a dispatch to the Duke of Portland, informed him that he had judged it necessary for the good of the service to continue Macarthur in his office of inspector of the public works, "a situation for which he seems extremely well qualified". However, in September 1796, the governor in another dispatch stated that "scarcely anything short of the full power of the governor would be considered by this person (Macarthur) as sufficient for conflicting the duties of his office". The governor found it necessary to check him in his interfering with other officers not responsible to him, and Macarthur promptly sent in his resignation. Hunter "without reluctance" accepted. But Macarthur had other interests. In September 1795 he was working his land with a plough, the first to be used in the colony, and experimenting in the breeding of sheep. He had imported sheep from both India and Ireland and produced a cross-bred wool of some interest. In 1796 he obtained a few merino sheep from the Cape of Good Hope, the progeny of which were carefully kept pure-bred. A few years later he purchased nine rams and a ewe from the Royal flock at Kew, and eventually raised a flock from which has grown the Australian wool industry. It was Macarthur's greatest achievement. He was engaged in a quarrel with Richard Atkins who had succeeded him as an inspector of public works, in connexion with Atkins having reported that soldiers were stealing turnips from the governor's garden. Atkins objected as a magistrate to not being given the title of esquire. Macarthur in reply wrote to the governor complaining that he had been grossly insulted, and stating that Atkins could be proved to be "a public cheater, living in the most boundless dissipation, without any visible means of maintaining it than by imposture on unwary strangers". David Collins (q.v.) as judge-advocate held an inquiry and reported in favour of Atkins, and having been vindicated Atkins wrote a furious letter to Macarthur. Hunter was about to appoint Atkins as judge-advocate, when Macarthur requested that he might institute criminal proceedings for libel in respect to Atkins's letter. Hunter, however, saw that Macarthur's real motive was to embarrass the civil power, and so reported to the English authorities. But Macarthur was a dangerous man to quarrel with. He wrote a long letter to England with many complaints against Hunter, which arrived in England early in 1797 and was sent out for reply to Hunter. His answering letter was dated 25 July 1798, but Macarthur had had a long start and undoubtedly was largely responsible for Hunter's recall. Hunter had only done his duty in endeavouring to restore to the civil administration the control of the land and the law courts, but this did not suit Macarthur and the other officers, who had been in full power between the departure of Phillip and the coming of Hunter, and in the fight that ensued Macarthur was the leading figure.
In 1798 when Dr Balmain while carrying out his duties came into conflict with the officers, Balmain found that his only resort was to challenge Macarthur to a duel. Macarthur's reply was that the corps would "appoint an officer to meet him, and another, and another, until there is no-one left to explain". In August 1801 his quarrel with Lieutenant Marshall led to Macarthur endeavouring to get the officers of the corps to unite in refusing to meet Governor King (q.v.). His commanding officer, Colonel Paterson (q.v.) refused to join in, and eventually Paterson challenged Macarthur to a duel and was severely wounded. King sent Macarthur to England under arrest to stand his trial by court-martial, and prepared a formidable indictment of him. King took every precaution he could for the safety of this document, but it was stolen on the way to England. Mr Justice Evatt in his Rum Rebellion says, "The inference is irresistible that either he (Macarthur) or some close associate of his arranged that the damning document should be stolen and destroyed". Whoever was responsible Macarthur arrived in London able to exercise his personality to his own advancement. He could be friendly when he wanted to be, and managed to become on good terms with officials in the colonial office. Samples of the fine wool he had produced had previously been sent to England, and he was able to show how valuable the development of its production would be. He proposed that a company should be formed to "encourage the increase of fine-woolled sheep in New South Wales" but it was never formed. Having addressed a memorial to the committee of the privy council appointed for the consideration of all matters of trade and foreign plantation, Macarthur gave evidence before this committee which decided that his plan should be referred to the governor of New South Wales, with instructions to give every encouragement to the growth of fine wool. Another recommendation was that Macarthur should be given a conditional grant of lands of a reasonable extent. The theft of King's dispatch was not investigated, Macarthur resigned his commission, and was allowed to return to New South Wales where he arrived on 9 June 1805. Apparently Macarthur had so impressed his views on the English authorities that long before this they had decided to recall Governor King. His successor, William Bligh (q.v.), was appointed in 1805, but did not arrive at Sydney until August 1806.
Bligh, a stronger man than either Hunter or King, proceeded to carry out his instructions to suppress the rum trade. But this touched the pockets of the officers and other monopolists, and less than six months after the governor's arrival Macarthur in a letter described him as "violent, rash, tyrannical". Apparently the settlers on the Hawkesbury took another view, for on the very day of Macarthur's letter, a large number of them signed a letter in which they spoke of the governor's "just and humane wishes for the public relief", and promised "at the risk of their lives and properties" to support the "just and benign" government under which they were living. (Sydney Gazette 8/2/1807). In Bligh's dispatch to Windham dated 7 February 1807 he stated that he had "considered this spirit business in all its bearings, and am come to the determination to prohibit the barter being carried on in any way whatever. It is absolutely necessary to be done to bring labour to a due value and support the farming interest" (H.R. of N.S.W., vol. VI, p. 250). In September of the same year principal surgeon Jamison a friend of Macarthur's was dismissed by Bligh from the position of magistrate, and Macarthur was evidently becoming openly hostile to the governor. Before the end of the year Macarthur was charged with sedition and committed for trial. Evatt in his Rum Rebellion examines the evidence and the law, and comes to the conclusion that a jury should have found Macarthur guilty on two out of the three counts. When the trial began on 25 January 1808 Macarthur objected to Atkins, the judge advocate, sitting on various grounds, mostly absurd or irrelevant. During the reading of Macarthur's speech Atkins intervened and said that Macarthur was defaming him and should be committed to prison. Atkins eventually left the court and proceeded to government house to consult Bligh. Gore the provost marshal also left and ordered away the constables on duty. The six officers who had been sitting with Atkins agreed that Macarthur's objections to Atkins were valid, and asked the governor to appoint an acting judge-advocate which Bligh refused to do. The officers then allowed Macarthur out on bail. Next morning the officers met in the court room at 10 a.m., but in the meantime Macarthur had been arrested by the provost marshal and put in gaol. The officers took up a perfectly illegal position and announced that they intended to bring Gore the provost marshal to justice. Bligh on the previous day had sent for Colonel Johnston who declined to come on the ground of illness, and he now wrote to the six officers summoning them to government house next day. Johnston apparently was now well enough to come to town and sign an order to release Macarthur, and that evening the New South Wales Corps marched in military formation to government house and arrested Bligh. It is generally admitted that Macarthur was the leading spirit in the deposing of Bligh, and undoubtedly he and his associates were guilty of high treason. Macarthur, always fully conscious of his own rectitude, wrote an affectionate note to his wife to tell her that he had been "deeply engaged all day in contending for the liberties of this unhappy colony. . . . The tyrant is now no doubt gnashing his teeth with vexation at his overthrow". At a new trial for sedition held seven days after the rebellion Macarthur was acquitted.
Immediately the rebel government was formed Macarthur was appointed colonial secretary, and until after the arrival of Paterson was the real ruler of the colony. The rum traffic was restored, and though in The Early Records of the Macarthurs of Camden it is stated that "the public expenditure was greatly reduced by Macarthur exchanging surplus cattle from the government herds for grain", Evatt refers to it as a "system of peculation". It seems clear that the recipients of government cows and oxen were practically all officers or supporters of the rebel administration. On 31 March 1809 Macarthur left for England with Johnston where they arrived in October 1809. In the previous May Viscount Castlereagh had given instructions that Johnston was to be sent to England to be tried, and that Macarthur was to be tried at Sydney. Johnston was tried by court-martial. Legally his position was extremely bad, and the defence made was that the extreme measures taken were necessary to save the colony. Macarthur in his evidence did his best to discredit Bligh, and no doubt helped Johnston in preparing his defence, which has been described as a masterpiece of specious insinuations against Bligh. On 2 July 1811 Johnston was found guilty and cashiered, the mildness of his punishment no doubt being on account of the full realization that he had been a mere tool of Macarthur.
Macarthur was quite aware that if he returned to Sydney the new governor, Macquarie (q.v.), would arrest him. In October 1812 he writes to his wife that he is in great perplexity and doubt as to whether he should return to the colony or withdraw her from it. In August 1816 he sent to his wife a copy of two letters he had sent to Lord Bathurst. The first which attempted to justify his conduct was shown to Lord Bathurst's secretary, who suggested that a different type of letter might be more likely to succeed. In the second letter Macarthur asked "whether after the lapse of so many years, when all the harsh and violent feelings which formerly distracted the different members of the community in Port Jackson have been worn out" an act of oblivion might not be passed which would enable Macarthur to return to his home. Lord Bathurst consented but included in his letter a clause "that you are fully sensible of the impropriety of conduct which led to your departure from the colony". Macarthur would not, however, accept permission to return on such terms, but Lord Bathurst in his letters of 14 August and 14 October 1816 stood firm and would not withdraw the passage. However, on 18 February 1817 Macarthur wrote to his wife to say that "all the obstacles which have so long obstructed my return to you . . . have this day been removed". He was still pursuing his campaign against Bligh, for in the same letter he tells her that he had told the under-secretary of state that Bligh was a "brutal ruffian governed by no principle of honour or rectitude, and restrained by no tie but the wretched and despicable one of fear". Macarthur arrived in Sydney in September 1817 having been absent eight and a half years.
Macarthur, now possibly the richest man in New South Wales, settled down to the management of his estates, and his life henceforth was comparatively tranquil. His great interest was the development of the fine wool industry. In September 1818 he mentions that he is trying to break in his sons, James and William "to oversee and manage his affairs", but fears characteristically enough that they "have not sufficient hardness of character to manage the people placed under their control" and that "they set too little value upon money, for the profession of agriculture which as you know requires that not a penny should be expended without good reason". In 1820, writing to his son John in England, he emphasizes the necessity of the colony providing exports to pay for its imports by developing the wool industry, and in 1821 he was suggesting to Commissioner J. T. Bigge (q.v.) the advisability of really respectable settlers, men with capital, being encouraged to come out to New South Wales. In January 1822 the governor, Sir Thomas Brisbane (q.v.), invited Macarthur to become a magistrate, but the two judges, John Wylde and Barron Field (q.v.), wrote to Brisbane questioning the advisability of this in view of the part taken by Macarthur in the rebellion. Macarthur was unable to obtain a copy of the letter for some time but when he did the old fires revived, and he wrote an abusive and insulting letter to Field who quite properly took no notice of it. In 1828 disagreeing with a decision of the chief justice, Francis Forbes (q.v.), Macarthur threatened to impeach him, but apparently thought better of it. He had been appointed a member of the legislative council in 1825 and he was again appointed in February 1829 when the number of members was increased. The death of his son John in 1831 was a great sorrow to him, and towards the end of 1832 his mind began to fail. He died on 10 April 1834 at the cottage, Camden Park, and was survived by his wife, three sons, of whom Edward is noticed separately, and three daughters.
Macarthur had the slightly tilted nose and determined chin of a born fighter. His son James in some notes on his character described him as "a man of quick and generous impulses, loth to enter into a quarrel but bold and uncompromising when assailed and at all times ready to take arms against opression or injustice". The trouble was that Macarthur who always had a keen eye for his own interests, firmly believed that he was always in the right, and was ever ready to vehemently point out how much in the wrong his opponents were. By some process they immediately became dishonest scoundrels. The 20 years after his sailing for Australia in 1789 is full of his quarrels. He broke three governors, and the verdict of history is that they were honest men doing their duty and that Macarthur was in the wrong. His conduct to them and his share in the liquor traffic are blots on his character that cannot be forgotten. He even quarrelled with Phillip. (Rum Rebellion, p. 64). He was not unforgiving especially if he had obtained his object, and it says something for his personal charm that he became afterwards reconciled with both Hunter and King. In his family life he was affectionate and beloved, and in his development of the wool industry he did a great work for his country. His knowledge, ability and foresight, joined with a tremendous force of character, made him the greatest personality of his time in Australia.
Macarthur's fourth son, James Macarthur, was born at Parramatta in 1798. He was educated in England and afterwards assisted his father in managing his property. In 1837 he published New South Wales Its Present State and Future Prospects, an interesting work with valuable statistics. In 1839 James Macarthur was nominated to the legislative council and in 1859 was elected to the legislative assembly. He died on 21 April 1867. He married in 1838 Emily, daughter of Henry Stone, whose daughter, Elizabeth, married Captain Arthur Alexander Walton Onslow, R.N.
Sir William Macarthur (1800-1882), the fifth son of John Macarthur, was born at Parramatta in December 1800. He was educated in England, returned to Australia with his father in 1817, and assisted in the management of his estates. In 1844 he published a small volume, Letters on the Culture of the Vine, Fermentation, and the Management of the Cellar. In 1849 he was made a member of the legislative council, and represented New South Wales at the Paris exhibition of 1855. Shortly afterwards he was knighted. After his return to Australia in 1857 he was again a member of the legislative council for some time, but never took a prominent part in politics. He died unmarried on 29 October 1882.
S. Macarthur Onslow, Some Early Records of the Macarthurs of Camden; Historical Records of Australia, ser. I, vols. I to XVI; Historical Records of New South Wales, vols. I to VII; H. V . Evatt, Rum Rebellion; G. Mackaness, Life of Admiral Bligh; Sydney Gazette, 8 February 1807; Harold Norrie, Journal and Proceedings Royal Australian Historical Society, vol. XV, which must be read with caution as the evidence is against many of Dr Norrie's conclusions. For James Macarthur, The Sydney Morning Herald, 24 April 1867; P. Mennell, The Dictionary of Australasian Biography; For Sir William Macarthur, Burke's Colonial Gentry, 1891; The Sydney Morning Herald, 31 October 1882.
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MacCALLUM, SIR MUNG0 WILLIAM (1854-1942),scholar,
son of Mungo MacCallum, was born at Glasgow on 26 February 1854. He was educated at Glasgow high school and university (M.A. 1876, Hon. LL.D. 1906), and at Leipzig and Berlin universities. At Glasgow he was awarded the Luke Fellowship for literature, philosophy, and classics. He was appointed professor of English literature and history at the University College of Wales in 1879, and in 1884 published his first book, Studies in Low German and High German Literature. About the end of 1886 he was appointed professor of modern languages at the university of Sydney. He held this chair for 34 years, and saw the number of students at the university grow from about 250 to 3300. In 1894 he published his Tennyson's Idylls of the King and Arthurian Story from the XVIth Century, in which he discussed the sources of the legends and the Arthurian literature in English from Malory to Matthew Arnold and Tennyson. His most interesting and important volume, however, was his Shakespeare's Roman Plays and their Background, published in 1910 and reprinted in 1925, which gave him an assured place in Shakespearian scholarship. In 1913 he published In Memory of Albert Bythesea Weigall, an excellent example of a short biography, in which eulogy is tempered by humour and sense of proportion. He was taking much interest in the administrative side of the university, was a member of the senate from 1898, dean of the faculty of arts from the same year to 1920, and outside the university, had other appointments, including that of trustee of the public library of New South Wales. He was chairman of trustees from 1906 to 1912.
When MacCallum gave up his chair in 1920 he was appointed professor emeritus and continued his interest in his school and the university. He was acting-warden and warden in 1923-4, vice-chancellor 1924-7, deputy-chancellor 1928-34, and chancellor 1934-6. When he resigned the chancellorship at the end of 1936, a special meeting of the senate was held so that testimony could be given, not only concerning the remarkable work of MacCallum during his 50 years connexion with the university, but also his influence as a teacher and a man. During these years of administrative work his interest in literature never flagged. He gave addresses to the English Association at Sydney, and in 1925 at the invitation of the British Academy he gave the Warton lecture, taking as his subject, "The Dramatic Monologue in the Victorian Period". He was also given the honorary degree of D.Litt. by Oxford University in this year. In 1930 he brought out Queen Jezebel; Fragments of an Imaginary Biography in Dramatised Dialogue, his least successful piece of work. It has its better moments, but there is often a curious disregard of the nuances of blank verse. His prose addresses of this period, however, show no falling off in his mental powers. The last of these to be published was his address on "Scott's Equipment in Attainments and Character for his Literary Work", which was delivered in his seventy-eighth year. He died at Sydney on 3 September 1942. He married in 1882 Dorette Margaretha Peters who survived him with a daughter and a son, Colonel W. P. MacCallum. Another son, who was Rhodes scholar in 1906, died in 1934. MacCallum, was created K.C.M.G. in 1926. He was a great influence in the rapidly-growing university of his time, and his eloquence, scholarship and wisdom left a lasting impression on it. His portrait by Longstaff (q.v.) is in the Great Hall of the university of Sydney.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 4 September 1942; E. Morris Miller, Australian Literature, which lists his published addresses; Calendars of the University of Sydney, 1937 and earlier Years; Debrett's Peerage, etc., 1940; Burke's Peerage, etc., 1937.
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McCAUGHEY, SIR SAMUEL (1835-1919),pastoralist and public benefactor,
was born near Ballymena, county Antrim, Ireland, on 30 June 1835. He came to Australia with an uncle, Charles Wilson, a brother of Sir Samuel Wilson (q.v.) and landed at Melbourne in April 1856. He immediately went to the country and began working as a jackeroo, in three months was appointed an overseer, and two years later became manager of Kewell station while his uncle was on a visit to England. In 1860, after his uncle's return, he acquired an interest in Coonong station near Uralla with two partners. His brother John who came out later became a partner in other stations. During the early days of Coonong station McCaughey suffered much from drought conditions, but overcame these by sinking bores for artesian water and constructing large tanks. He was thus a pioneer of water-conservation in Australia. In 1871 he was away from Australia for two years on holiday, and on his return did much experimenting in sheep-breeding, at first seeking the strains that could produce the best wool in the Riverina district, and afterwards when the mutton trade developed considering the question from that angle. In 1880 when Sir Samuel Wilson went to England, McCaughey bought two of his stations, Toorale and Dunlop. He then owned about 3,000,000 acres. In 1886 when he again visited the old world he imported a considerable number of Vermont sheep from the United States, and he also introduced fresh strains from Tasmania. In 1900 he bought North Yanco and at great cost constructed about 200 miles of channels and irrigated 40,000 acres. The success of this scheme is believed to have encouraged the New South Wales government to proceed with the Burrenjuck dam. McCaughey had become a member of the New South Wales legislative council in 1899, and in 1905 he was knighted. He retained his health through a vigorous old age and died at North Yanco on 25 July 1919. He never married. He is stated to have left £600,000 for the technical training of the children of dead soldiers, £300,000 to the university of Sydney, £250,000 to the university of Queensland, £250,000 to the Presbyterian Church, a rich endowment to a Presbyterian orphanage in Sydney, £10,000 each to four Sydney secondary schools and £5000 each to three Sydney hospitals. (Australia's Debt to Irish Nation-builders.) This, however, is not strictly accurate, for instance the benefaction to the two universities takes the form of a yearly income of about £17,000 to Sydney and about £11,000 to Queensland; but up to the time of his death no other Australian had left so much in public benefactions. His portrait by Longstaff (q.v.) is in the Great Hall of the university of Sydney.
McCaughey believed in the gospel of work and attributed his success to this. He had too a shrewd mind, great foresight and knew when to take a risk. Personally he was a modest man of unbounded generosity, hundreds of men benefited by his kindness and his contributions to public funds were also large. He was an important force in the development of the wool industry, and may fairly be considered one of the great builders of Australia.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 30 June 1915, 26 July 1919; The Argus, Melbourne, 26 July 1919; P. S. Cleary, Australia's Debt to Irish Nation-Builders.
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McCAWLEY, TH0MAS WILLIAM (1881-1925),chief justice of Queensland,
son of James McCawley, was born at Toowoomba Queensland, on 24 July 1881. Educated at St Patrick's boys' school, Toowoomba, McCawley at 14 years of age began working as a teacher, but shortly afterwards entered a solicitor's office. He studied shorthand and became so proficient that he taught it to evening students at the Toowoomba technical college. He passed the public service examination, entered the service of the Queensland government savings bank, and was successively transferred to the offices of the public service board and the department of justice. Studying after office hours, he passed the prescribed examinations and was admitted to the Queensland bar in the beginning of 1907. In the same year he was appointed certifying barrister under the friendly societies and trade union acts, and as first clerk in the department of justice he earned the complete confidence of the successive ministerial heads of the department. In 1910, when only 28 years of age, he was appointed crown solicitor, and soon established a remarkable reputation. At one sitting of the high court at Brisbane the state of Queensland was concerned in six appeals, and the court upheld McCawley's opinion in each case. In the Eastern case argued by T. J. Ryan (q.v.) before the privy council in England, McCawley as crown solicitor instructed Ryan and accompanied him to England. Their contentions were upheld by the privy council, and the immediate consequential saving to Queensland was in the neighbourhood of £70,000. In 1915 McCawley was appointed under-secretary for justice.
McCawley had always been interested in industrial arbitration, and so far back as 1906 had collaborated with (Sir) J. W. Blair and T. Macleod in the preparation of a work on The Workers' Compensation Act of 1905. In January 1917 McCawley was appointed president of the court of industrial arbitration, and a few months later he was made a judge of the supreme court. There was much opposition to these appointments, and technical objections were raised by some members of the Queensland bar and some of the judges of the supreme court. A majority of the Queensland full court upheld these objections, and on an appeal being made to the high court of Australia there was again a majority verdict against McCawley. The privy council, however, reversed both these decisions. McCawley found that the work of the arbitration court was both heavy and difficult, but he had never been afraid of work. On 1 April 1922 he was made chief-justice of Queensland on the retirement of Sir Pope Cooper (q.v.). McCawley carried on his offices until 16 April 1925, when he died suddenly at Brisbane in his forty-fourth year. He married in 1911 Margaret Mary, daughter of Thomas O'Hogan, who survived him with three sons and a daughter.
McCawley started with no advantages and by sheer force of ability and character reached one of the highest positions in the land. He easily wore down the feeling that arose when he was made a judge and earned the respect and affection of all his associates. He never lost his simple and unassuming manner, he remained a student all his life, and he gained a remarkable knowledge of law. His earnestness, courtesy and acuteness made him a great arbitration judge. His too early death was lamented by all classes in Queensland.
The Brisbane Courier, 17 and 18 April 1925; Who's Who, 1925.
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McCAY, SIR JAMES WHITESIDE (1864-1930),politician and soldier,
son of the Rev. A. R. Boyd McCay, was born at Ballynure, Ireland, on 21 December 1864. His mother was a woman of remarkable ability. He was brought to Victoria by his father, who became the Presbyterian minister at Castlemaine, and was educated at Scotch College, Melbourne, where he was dux of the school in 1881. At the matriculation examination he won the classical exhibition and divided the mathematical exhibition with J. H. Michell (q.v.). He graduated M.A. at the university of Melbourne and for some years was a teacher at the Castlemaine grammar school. He took up the study of law, graduated LL.M. and in 1895 was called to the bar. In the same year he was elected a member of the legislative assembly for Castlemaine. In December 1899 he became minister for education and commissioner of trade and customs in the McLean (q.v.) ministry, but on going before the electors was defeated. He was elected a member of the house of representatives for Corinella, Victoria, at the first federal election in 1901, and was minister for defence from August 1904 to July 1905 in the Reid-McLean ministry. He contested the new division of Corio at the 1906 election and was defeated. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the senate in 1910, and did not again attempt to enter politics.
McCay had always been interested in the volunteer, and later, militia, forces. He obtained a commission as a lieutenant in 1886. He reached the rank of lieutenant-colonel in 1903, joined the intelligence corps in 1907, and was director of intelligence from 1909 to 1913. He was an early volunteer in the 1914-18 war, and left with the first expeditionary force in command of the second infantry brigade. In Egypt he showed ability in training his men, but the heavy work he gave them did not make him popular. He led his men at the landing at Gallipoli and was in much heavy subsequent fighting. Early in May during the struggle for Krithia he was wounded in the leg by a bullet while he was in a forward position, and two months later while descending a steep communication trench his leg snapped where the bone had previously been injured, and he was invalided to Australia. In March 1916 he returned to Egypt, took over command of the fifth division with the rank of major-general, and in July 1916 went to France with his men. At the battle of Fromelles very heavy losses were incurred, and McCay was severely blamed on this account. The Australian official historian, C. E. W. Bean, however, entirely exonerates McCay. "The case of McCay may stand as a classic example of the gross injustice of such popular verdicts, he having been loaded with the blame for three costly undertakings--the charge of the 2nd brigade at Cape Helles, the desert march of the 5th division, and the attack at Fromelles--for none of which was he in fact any more responsible than the humblest private in his force, while in the case of the desert march he had actually protested against the order" (Official History of Australia in the War, Vol. III, p. 447.) In December McCay was invalided to England and was appointed general officer commanding the Australian forces in Great Britain. On his return to Australia he retired from the legal firm of McCay and Thwaites, and until 1922 was business adviser to the Commonwealth. He was also a commissioner of the States savings bank. During his last years he contributed many able leading articles upon political and economic subjects to the Argus newspaper. He died at Melbourne on 1 October, 1930. He married in 1896 Julia Mary O'Meara who died in 1915. He was survived by two daughters. He was created C.B. in 1915, K.C.M.G. in 1918, and K.B.E. in 1919.
McCay was a man of great ability, widely read, and a good man of business. In parliament, he had a high reputation as a speaker and administrator, as a soldier he was a good disciplinarian, a capable officer, and a thoroughly brave man. But though he was unfortunate in the reputation he obtained, he does not appear to have had the qualities which make a great army leader.
The Argus and The Age, Melbourne, 2 October 1930; The Official History of Australia in the War, 1914-1918, vols. I to V; Burke's Peerage, etc., 1929; Commonwealth Parliamentary Handbook, 1901-1930; History of Scotch College.
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McCOLL, HUGH (1819-1885),pioneer of irrigation,
eldest son of James McColl, was born at Glasgow on 22 January 1819. In 1836 he went to North Shields, Northumberland, and in 1840 opened a business as bookseller and printer at South Shields. He was appointed secretary of the Tyne conservancy committee, which probably led to his interest in the conservation of water, and in 1852 left for Australia, arriving in January 1853. From 1856 he resided mostly at Bendigo where he had a business as a printer and newspaper proprietor. In 1865 he became secretary of the Coliban water supply committee until it was taken over by the government. For many years he was a commercial traveller, and on his way through the country in dry seasons became convinced of the value of irrigation. In 1874 he became associated with Benjamin Hawkins Dods (1834-1896), civil engineer, and the North-western Canal Company was projected with a capital of £1,500,000. Government after government was approached, but for one reason or another the promoters were put off. In April 1877 permission for a survey was given and this was carried out in 1878. It showed that so far as the configuration of the country was concerned the scheme was practicable, but it was another matter to raise the large capital required, and in this the promoters were not successful. In 1880 McColl was elected a member of the legislative assembly for Mandurang, and for the next five years in season and out of season continued to bring the water question before parliament. He was often derided, but eventually succeeded in impressing the Service (q.v.)-Berry (q.v.) ministry with his views, and in 1884 a royal commission was appointed with Alfred Deakin (q.v.) as chairman. Part of the inquiry was that the commission should endeavour to ascertain "whether provision can be made for the conservation and distribution of water for the use of the people". Deakin went to America, Europe and Asia to make inquiries, but, before the report was completed McColl died on 2 April 1885. He had done a great piece of work for his country. He was married twice (1) to Jane, daughter of Joshua Hiers, and (2) to Mary, daughter of Adam Guthrie, who survived him with his eight children. His son, James Hiers McColl, is noted below.
The Age and The Argus, Melbourne, 4 April 1885; Men of the Time in Australia, 1878; James H. McColl, The Victorian Historical Magazine, June 1917, pp. 145-63.
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McCOLL, JAMES HIERS (1844-1929),politician,
son of Hugh McColl (q.v.), was born at South Shields, England, in 1844. He was educated at Scotch College, Melbourne, and afterwards became a mechanical engineer. He gave this up to become a member of the firm of McColl and Rankin, legal managers. In 1886 he was elected a member of the Victorian legislative assembly for his father's old constituency, Mandurang, and in 1889 became member for Gunbower. He was minister of mines and of water supply in the Patterson (q.v.) ministry from January 1893 to September 1894, and commissioner of crown lands in the McLean (q.v.) ministry from December 1899 to November 1900. In March 1901 he was elected to the federal house of representatives for Echuca, and in 1906 resigned his seat to contest the senate, to which he was elected second on the poll. He was vice-president of the executive council in the Cook ministry from June 1913 to September 1914. At the senate election held in 1914 he was defeated after an unbroken career of 28 years in parliament and retired from politics. He purchased an irrigated property at Gunbower, lived there for some years, and then spent his last days in retirement at Melbourne. He died on 20 February 1929. He was twice married (1) to Emily, daughter of D. Boyle, and (2) to Sadie, daughter of W. K. Thomas who survived him with his two sons and three daughters.
McColl was a fluent speaker and a good debater. He was an authority on land and mining questions, and following in his father's footsteps was a strong advocate for irrigation and closer settlement. He took pride in the fact that as minister for lands he had purchased the first Victorian estates to be divided for closer settlement.
Cyclopedia of Victoria, 1903; The Argus and The Age, Melbourne, 21 February 1929.
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McCOY, SIR FREDERICK (1817-1899),geologist and naturalist,
the son of Simon McCoy, M.D., was born at Dublin in 1817. The date usually given is 1823, but the Melbourne Argus in its obituary notice stated that he was born in 1817. The earlier date is probably correct as McCoy had a scientific paper published in the Magazine of Natural History in 1838 and married in 1843. He was originally educated for the medical profession at Dublin and Cambridge, but natural history and the study of fossil organic remains became his chief interest. About the year 1841 he prepared and published a Catalogue of the Organic Remains exhibited in the Rotunda Dublin, in 1844 appeared A Synopsis of the Character of Carboniferous Limestone Fossils of Ireland, and in 1846 A Synopsis of the Silurian Fossils of Ireland. He was working on the geological survey in 1845 and in 1846 began his four years' association with Professor Sedgwick at Cambridge, during which he determined and arranged the whole series of British and foreign fossils in the geological museum of the university. McCoy worked at his task with the greatest zeal and five years later Sedgwick spoke of him In the highest terms "an excellent naturalist, an incomparable and most philosophical palaeontologist, and one of the steadiest and quickest workman that ever undertook the arrangement of a museum. You have seen his Cambridge work and where is there anything to be named with it, either in extent, or perfection of arrangement". McCoy joined the Imperial survey of Ireland, and after completing the maps of the districts he had surveyed in the field, was appointed in 1850 to the chair of geology and mineralogy at Queen's College, Belfast. In his vacations he continued to work at Cambridge. In 1854 he accepted the position of professor of natural sciences at the university of Melbourne. He was just able to finish his Description of the British Palaeozoic Fossils in the Geological Museum of the University of Cambridge before sailing for Australia.
When McCoy began his work at the university of Melbourne there were few students, and for many years he took classes in chemistry, mineralogy, botany, zoology, comparative anatomy, geology and palaeontology. In endeavouring to cover so much ground it was impossible for him to keep his reading up to date in all these sciences, and he remained most distinguished as a palaeontologist. There was a small national museum housed at the crown lands office, which in spite of opposition he managed to get transferred to the university. In 1863 he persuaded the government to build a museum in the university grounds, and the national museum became the great interest of his life. In 1870 the control of the museum was vested in the trustees of the public library but it was impossible to control McCoy. Behind the veil of his courtesy and politeness was great determination, and it was seldom that he failed to have his own way. He knew what he wanted, and whether he was dealing with the university council or the trustees of the public library, in the end he usually succeeded in getting it. In addition to his duties as professor and director, McCoy did useful work as chairman of the first royal commission on the goldfields of Victoria, as government palaeontologist, and as a member of various cornmittees. He published two works for the government of Victoria, Prodromus of the Palaeontology of Victoria, 1874-82 (only seven out of 10 decades published), and Prodromus of the Zoology of Victoria in 20 decades, 1878-90. In 1880 he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of London. He died on 13 May 1899. He married in 1843, Anna Maria Harrison of Dublin, who predeceased him, as did also an only son who left descendants, and an only daughter. He was created K.C.M.G. in 1891 and had the D.Sc. honorary degree of Cambridge and other universities. He received the Murchison medal from the Geological Society of London, and many other distinctions. A list of 69 of his scientific papers is given in the Geological Magazine for 1899, p. 285.
McCoy was a fair, strongly built man, always well-dressed and showing no trace of the arduous work he was doing. He was inclined to be conservative in his views, and strongly opposed some of Darwin's theories when they were first brought forward. He was, however, a fine all-round scientist, a distinguished palaeontologist, and a great museum director who did remarkable work in the building up of the national museum at Melbourne.
The Geological Magazine, 1899, p. 283; Nature, 1899, p. 83; J. W. Clarke and T. McK. Hughes, The Life and Letters of the Rev. Adam Sedgwick; E. La T. Armstrong, The Book of the Public Library, Museums, and National Gallery of Victoria; Sir Ernest Scott, A History of the University of Melbourne; The Argus, Melbourne, 15 May 1899; E. W. Skeats, David Lecture 1933, Some Founders of Australian Geology; Debrett's Peerage, etc., 1899.
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McCRAE, GEORGE GORDON (1833-1927),poet,
was born near Leith, Scotland, on 29 May 1833. His father, Andrew Murison McCrae, was a writer to the signet, Edinburgh, his mother, Georgiana Huntly McCrae, is noticed separately. His father sailed for Australia in advance in 1838, and George Gordon McCrae arrived at Melbourne with his mother on 1 March 1841. They lived for a time at Abbotsford, about two miles out of Melbourne, and then at Arthur's Seat, where his father had taken up land. Here the boy was educated by a private tutor, John McClure, M.A., who remained with the family for nine years. When about 17 years of age, McCrae joined a surveying party as a probationer, and narrowly escaped being caught in the flames of "Black Thursday". After being in one or two offices to obtain business experience, he was appointed to a position in the government service on 1 January 1854. He remained in the service for 39 years becoming eventually deputy registrar-general, and retired with a pension in 1893, having reached the age limit.
McCrae began to contribute verse to the Australasian and other papers, and gradually became acquainted with all the literary men of his period including Gordon (q.v.), Kendall (q.v.), Horne (q.v.), and Clarke (q.v.). Some of these he met at Dwight's second-hand bookshop in Bourke-street, Melbourne, and it was Dwight who published in 1867, McCrae's two little volumes, The Story of Balladeädro and Mämba, both based on aboriginal legends. He had hoped to publish a third book with an aboriginal setting, Karakorok, but it remained in manuscript. He became very friendly with Gordon, who praised his verse, and Kendall, whom he was able to help during his troubled days in Melbourne. In 1873 appeared a long poem in blank verse, The Man in the Iron Mask, from which Longfellow selected some lines for an anthrology of sea poems. McCrae was always fond of the sea and by saving up his leave was enabled to visit Great Britain, and to make two voyages to the Seychelles in which islands he became very interested. He did much preliminary work for a history of the Seychelles which was never completed, and began to work on a novel, John Rous, a badly arranged but readable story of the reign of Queen Anne, which was not published until 1918. He also wrote a poem, Don César, in ottava rima, as long as Don Juan, several extracts from which appeared in the Bulletin. In 1915 a small selection of his poems was published, The Fleet and Convoy and Other Verses. This little volume is full of misprints and scarcely represents the poet at his best. An opportunity was lost to include some of McCrae's more distinguished work, such as "A Rosebud from the Garden of the Taj", now buried in old papers and journals. He died at Hawthorn, Melbourne, on 15 August 1927, in his ninety-fifth year, his mind still quite unimpaired. Of few men has it been so truly said that he was universally loved and regretted. He married in July 1871, Augusta Helen Brown, who predeceased him. He was survived by a son and three daughters. Another son was killed in the 1914-18 war.
McCrae was well over six feet in height and in his youth strikingly handsome. He had a gift for writing musical verse, often charming and at times rising into poetry. He was apparently quite incapable of self-criticism, and never realized how much his work might have gained by pruning and condensation. His son, Hugh Raymond McCrae, born in 1876, became the author of Satyrs and Sunlight, and other volumes which proclaimed him one of the finest poets produced in Australia. He also published some volumes in prose of which My Father and My Father's Friends gives a very pleasant picture of his father's associates. One of McCrae's daughters, Dorothy Frances McCrae, also published verse.
Short autobiography in manuscript; Hugh McCrae, My Father and my Father's Friends; personal knowledge.
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McCRAE, GEORGIANA HUNTLY (1804-1890), née GORDON,artist and diarist,
was born at London, on 15 March 1804. She was educated at a convent school and later at Claybrook House, Fulham, and the New Road boarding school. After leaving school, Miss Gordon had lessons in music from a daughter of Thomas Holcroft, in landscape painting from John Varley, and in miniature painting from Charles Hayter. She proved to be an apt pupil. On 25 September 1830 she was married to her cousin, Andrew Murison McCrae, and on 26 October 1840 she sailed for Australia in the Argyle with her four small children. Her husband had preceded her. She arrived at Melbourne on 1 March 1841. After living for about a year in the city, the family moved to Abbotsford, about two miles away, where a brick house was built from Mrs McCrae's own drawings. Three years later her husband took up land at Arthur's Seat as a cattle station. They remained there until most of the children were grown up: four more were born between 1841 and 1851. On removing to Melbourne, Mrs McCrae's house became the meeting-place of the leading literary and artistic people of the time. In 1857 she showed some excellent miniatures in the exhibition of the Victorian Society of Fine Arts, but the bringing up of a large family in pioneer days left her little leisure for artistic work. Mrs McCrae is not represented in any of the national galleries of Australia, but some miniatures, sketch books, and a few drawings are in the possession of her descendants. A list of her miniatures painted in Great Britain is given in her diary. Some suggestion of her ability as a miniaturist may be found in the reproductions of the portraits of herself and her husband in Georgiana's Journal which, edited by her grandson, Hugh McCrae, was published in 1934. This transcript of her diary from 1841 to 1846 proved to be a most interesting first-hand record of how the pioneers lived in the early days of the colony of Victoria. As a contribution to the social history of the time it can never lose its its value. Mrs McCrae was a woman of great courage, personality and ability, who was prevented by the conditions of her life from reaching her full height as an artist. She died at Hawthorn, near Melbourne, on 24 May 1890, and was survived by seven children. Her son, George Gordon McCrae, is noticed separately.
Edited by Hugh McCrae, Georgiana's Journal; private information.
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McCUBBIN, FREDERICK (1855-1917),artist,
was born at West Melbourne, on 25 February 1855. His father, Alexander McCubbin, was a master baker. The son was educated at Mr Wilmot's school, West Melbourne and St Paul's school, Swanston-street, Melbourne. On leaving school he became an office boy in a solicitor's office, but after a few months gave this up to assist his father in his business. He was then apprenticed to a coach painter, but not long after the completion of his indentures in 1875, his father died and he had to take charge of his business. Some years before he had begun to work in the evening at a school of design, where he became acquainted with C. Douglas Richardson (q.v.). They quickly exhausted the possibilities of this school, and the two of them passed on to the newly established drawing school of the national gallery. McCubbin afterwards joined the painting class but made little progress until the advent of G. F. Folingsby (q.v.) as director in 1882. He soon began to improve, and a little later won the first prize of £30 in a students' competition for a composition called "Home Again". In 1886 he was appointed acting-master of the school of design at the national gallery and afterwards was appointed master. He remained in this position to the end of his life. If it restricted the time available for painting, his salary at least provided the element of safety. On the death of Folingsby in January 1891, McCubbin was appointed acting-director and held the position until the arrival of Bernard Hall (q.v.) in March 1892. In 1894 one of his pictures, "Feeding Time", was bought for the national gallery at Melbourne. Six years later this was exchanged for another of his pictures, "A Winter Evening". In 1897 he exhibited at the Paris Salon and at the Grafton gallery, London. He was elected president of the Victorian Artists' Society in 1902, and again held the position in a later year. In 1906 his large triptych, "The Pioneer", was acquired under the terms of the Felton (q.v.) bequest for the national gallery of Victoria.
In 1907 McCubbin obtained leave of absence, visited Europe, and made his first acquaintance with the great masters of painting, hitherto seen only in reproductions. He enjoyed it very much, but his visit was too short to have much influence on his work though for a time afterwards he seemed to feel a difficulty in settling down, and occasionally his tendency to neglect drawing and think only of colour became accentuated. The visit had been a great event for him and left him many happy memories. Towards the end of 1911 there was a quarrel in the artists' camp, and McCubbin left the Victorian Artists' Society and joined Walter Withers (q.v.), Max Meldrum, Edward Officer (q.v.) and others in forming the Australian Art Association. In 1915 he fell into bad health, he had two sons at the war and his natural anxiety may have contributed to this. In 1916 he was granted six months' leave of absence from the national gallery school, and he died on 20 December 1917. He had married in 1890, Annie Moriarty, who with two daughters and four sons, survived him. One of his sons, Louis McCubbin, born 18 March 1891, became an artist of ability and was president of the Victorian Artists' Society, 1933-5. He was appointed director of the national gallery at Adelaide in 1936.
Frederick McCubbin's enthusiasm and kindliness had a great influence for good on his students, though strictly speaking he may not have been a great teacher. His portraits were unequal, but in his landscape painting he showed great sincerity, good colour, sound cornposition and much poetical feeling. Examples of his work may be found in the Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Perth, Geelong and Castlemaine galleries.
A. Colquhoun, Frederick McCubbin; The Art of Frederick McCubbin, but neither of these books is always accurate; W. Moore, The Story of Australian Art; personal knowledge.
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McCULLOCH, ALLAN RIVERSTONE (1885-1925),zoologist,
son of Herbert Riverstone McCulloch, was born at Sydney, on 20 June 1885. At the age of 13 he began working as an unpaid assistant to E. R. Waite (q.v.), at the Australian museum, who encouraged him in the study of zoology. In 1906 McCulloch was appointed assistant in charge of vertebrates at the museum, and soon afterwards began to specialize in the study of Australian fishes and fish-like animals. His first paper appeared in the Records of the Australian Museum in 1906, and until his death papers by him were published every year in that or some other scientific journal. Though never of robust physique he was a great worker, and made several trips to the Great Barrier Reef and various Pacific islands, obtaining fresh information about his work. In 1922 he made an adventurous journey through Papua with Captain Frank Hurley. His unremitting work undermined his health, which broke down badly in 1923. At the time of his death at Honolulu on 1 September 1925, McCulloch was on 12 months' leave in the hope that rest and change might benefit him. By his premature death, a scientific worker of unusual distinction was lost, who held the first place in his subject in Australia. He was also an excellent organizer and trainer of younger members of the staff of the Australian museum. His Check List of Fishes and Fish-like Animals of New South Wales was published by the Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales in 1922, and nearly five years after his death, A Check List of the Fishes Recorded from Australia, prepared from McCulloch's materials, and edited by Gilbert P. Whitley, was published as Memoir V of the Australian museum of Sydney. A monument to his memory was placed on Lord Howe Island, a place held in great affection by McCulloch.
C. Anderson, Records of the Australian Museum, 1926-7, which includes a list of McCulloch's papers; Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, 1926, p. VI; Introduction to A Check List of the Fishes Recorded from Australia.
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McCULLOCH, SIR JAMES (1819-1893),four times premier of Victoria,
son of George McCulloch, was born at Glasgow m 1819. He had a primary education at a local school and obtained employment in the business of Dennistoun Brothers, merchants. He showed such diligence that he gradually rose, was made a junior partner, and in 1853 was sent to Melbourne to organize an Australian branch of the business. In 1854 he was nominated a member of the old legislative council of Victoria. In 1856, under the new constitution, he was elected a member of the legislative assembly for Wimmera, and in April of the next year was called upon by the governor to form a ministry. He attempted a coalition with O'Shanassy (q.v.), but the negotiations broke down and eventually W. C. Haines (q.v.) became premier with McCulloch holding the position of commissioner of trade and customs. In October 1859, when the W. Nicholson (q.v.) government came in, McCulloch was treasurer, but the early governments of Victoria had no lasting qualities and he was out of office again in September 1860. In June 1863 he was asked to form a ministry and succeeded in getting together the strongest cabinet that had held office up to that time. It lasted for nearly five years, and there were opportunities to bring in valuable legislation which were not fully availed of. In fact much of the time was taken up with a constitutional struggle relating to the powers of the legislative council. The governor, Sir Charles Darling, was not a strong man, and his conduct of affairs did nothing to improve matters. At the election held in August 1864, the government obtained a large majority, including many men who were strong democrats looked upon as dangers to the community by the conservative legislative council. Both McCulloch and Higinbotham (q.v.), his attorney-general, were free-traders, but to the astonishment of everyone a large number of protective duties were introduced as part of the government policy under the guise of "revenue duties". Knowing that these would be strongly opposed in the council, the tariff bill was tacked on to the appropriation bill, passed through the assembly, and sent to the council which promptly rejected it. The government now being unable to pay the civil servants, the ingenious device was adopted of borrowing money from a bank, getting the bank to sue for the amount owing, and allowing judgment to go by default. The treasury repaid the amount to the bank, which lent the money to the government again. The struggle went on for years, McCulloch showing a grim determination that would have been more useful in a better cause. On the one hand McCulloch was able to say that he had the people behind him, and that they should rule, and on the other the council claimed that the "tacking" of a bill was a breach of constitutional usage. A full account of the struggle will be found in Turner's History of Victoria and in Rusden's History of Australia.
McCulloch resigned in May 1868 and Sladen (q.v.) formed a stop-gap ministry which lasted only two months. The question then at issue was a proposed grant of £20,000 to Darling, the late governor. Darling, however, having been given a pension of £1000 a year by the British government, ended the matter by stating that neither he nor Lady Darling could accept the proposed grant. McCulloch became premier again in July 1868 and was also chief secretary and treasurer. He was succeeded by J. A. Macpherson (q.v.) in September 1869 but again was in power in April 1870 and was able to form a strong cabinet. He passed an act doing away with state aid to religion, but an attempt to bring in a property tax without exemptions, resulted in the downfall of his ministry in 1871. In 1872 he became agent-general for Victoria in London for about two years. In October 1875 he formed his fourth ministry. His term of office was marked by much bitter feeling, and the government, being opposed by persistent stonewalling from the opposition under Berry (q.v.), was able to do business only by the application of the closure. At the election held in May 1877 the government was badly defeated, though McCulloch retained his seat. He retired from politics in 1878, devoted his time to business interests, and had an important share in the development of the frozen meat trade. Early in 1886 he finally left Australia for England, where he died on 31 January 1893. He married 1) Susan Renwick and (2) Margaret Inglis, who survived him. There were no children of either marriage. He was twice president of the Melbourne chamber of commerce, a director of several important financial institutions, and was a vice-president of the trustees of the public library, museums, and national gallery of Victoria. He was knighted in 1870 and created K.C.M.G. in 1874.
McCulloch was a man of robust physique and energetic character. He had great determination, and was a forcible debater with a clear and unvarnished style. As a politician, he became something of an opportunist, and towards the end of his career was rebuked by Service (q.v.) for the intrigues by which "he had successively turned two governments out of office and wasted four months of public time, without having anything better to offer than an imperfect adaptation of the proposals submitted by those governments". However true that may have been, McCulloch's force of character and sagacious intellect had made him an important and often dominating figure during the first 20 years of politics in Victoria.
P. Mennell, The Dictionary of Australasian Biography; H. G. Turner, A History of the Colony of Victoria; G. W. Rusden, History of Australia; The Argus and The Age, Melbourne, 1 February 1893; Debrett's Peerage, etc., 1893.
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McDONALD, CHARLES (1861-1925),speaker, Commonwealth house of representatives,
was the son of Charles Thomas Young McDonald, and was born at Melbourne in 1861. He was educated at state schools, and at a comparatively early age was taken by his parents to Charters Towers, Queensland. He became a watch-maker and as a young man showed an interest in social questions. He was president of the Australian labour federation 1890-2, and in 1893 was elected for Flinders in the Queensland legislative assembly. He began to be interested in parliamentary practice and was soon an expert upon the standing orders. As he was a born fighter and knew the exact limits of his rights, he was frequently in conflict with the speaker. His experiences were useful to him, however, in later years when he became a presiding officer himself.
McDonald left Queensland politics in 1901 to enter the federal house of representatives and from 1906 to 1910 was chairman of committees. In July 1910 he was elected speaker and held the position until June 1913, when the second Fisher (q.v.) government resigned. He was again speaker from September 1914 to early in 1917. Originally a very strong man, tireless after riding around his electorate on a bicycle during election campaigns, he fell into ill-health in his later days, and died at Melbourne on 13 November 1925, the day before a federal election at which he was again a candidate. In 1892 he married Miss Tregear, who survived him with a daughter.
McDonald was in parliament for a continuous period of 33 years. He was not a good public speaker though at times a vigorous and voluminous one. Known in his younger days as "Fighting Mac" he advocated the views of his party with great persistency, and showed that he had given much attention to financial questions. As speaker of the house of representatives he declined to wear the robes of office, but he carried out the duties with dignity, ability and impartiality. In private life his hobby was painting in both oils and water-colours.
The Brisbane Courier, 14 November 1925; The Age Melbourne, 14 November 1925; The Australian Worker, 18 November 1925; C. A. Bernays, Queensland Politics During Sixty Years; H. G. Turner, The First Decade of the Australian Commonwealth.
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MACDONALD, DONALD (1857-1932),journalist,
son of Daniel Macdonald, was born at Fitzroy, a suburb of Melbourne on 6 June 1857. His earlier days were spent at Keilor, where he was educated at the state school, and there he developed his love for nature and became a good cricketer and footballer. For a time he was a teacher in the Victorian education department, and then obtained a position on the Corowa Free Press and had a good training as a reporter. In October 1881 he came to Melbourne and joined the staff of the Argus for which he continued to write until more than 50 years later. He first made his mark as a cricket reporter, and for a great many years under the name of "Observer" he reported all the important matches at Melbourne, and many test matches played in other states. Before his time, matches were often reported over by over, but Macdonald dropped much of the detail and yet made the account much more vivid. He completely revolutionized cricket reporting, and was also an able reporter of football matches until increasing age made him unable to face the winter weather. His nature work appeared in both the Australasian and the Argus, and in 1887 an interesting collection of his sketches was published under the title Gum Boughs and Wattle Bloom. When the South African war broke out Macdonald was one of the earliest war correspondents to go to the front. He unfortunately got shut up in Ladysmith, and found it impossible to send his reports through the Boer lines. Like many others of the beseiged, he suffered from dysentery, and returning to Australia after Ladysmith was relieved, was but a shadow of his earlier self. His accounts of the siege were published in the Argus and, in 1900, as a volume, How We Kept the Flag Flying, excellent work of its kind. When Macdonald had recovered he took a year's leave and lectured on his experiences in Australia, New Zealand, and Great Britain. After his return he established a column in the Argus, "Nature Notes and Queries", which brought him many letters. Noticing that many of these came from boys, another column "Notes for Boys" was started in February 1909, which became very popular. This column suggested his next book The Bush Boy's Book, first published in 1911. The second edition was much enlarged and by 1933 three other editions had been printed. In 1922 appeared At the End of the Moonpath, stories about Australian birds and animals for children. Towards the end of his life Macdonald became practically bed-ridden, but he continued his writing up to the last day of his life. He died at Black Rock, a seaside suburb of Melbourne, on 23 November 1932, and was survived by a daughter, Mrs Elaine Whittle. In 1933 Mrs Whittle made a selection of his writings from the Argus, The Brooks of Morning Nature and Reflective Essays, with a good portrait of Macdonald in his later days. In addition to the volumes mentioned, Macdonald wrote a novel in collaboration with J. F. Edgar, The Warrigal's Well, a North Australian story published in 1901. He was also responsible for a Tourists' Handbook of Australia published in 1905.
Macdonald was a lovable and attractive man who made many friends and kept them. As a journalist he was always interesting, whether he might be writing about cricket or his kitchen garden, about boys or the Australian countryside. He had a great influence through his "Nature Notes" and "Notes for Boys" on the youth of his own state. Many of the boys he influenced have since carried on his work both as journalists and teachers.
The Argus and The Age, Melbourne, 24 November 1932; private information and personal knowledge.
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MacDONNELL, SIR RICHARD GRAVES (1814-1881),governor of South Australia,
was the son of the Rev. Dr MacDonnell, provost of Trinity College, Dublin, 1852-67. His mother was the daughter of Dean Graves, senior fellow of Trinity College. He was born at Dublin on 3 September 1814, and studying at Trinity College, graduated with distinction in classics and science. He took up law, was called to the Irish bar in 1838, and to the English bar at Lincoln's Inn, London, in 1840. In 1843 he was appointed chief justice of the Gambian settlement and in 1847 governor. In 1852 he was transferred to the governorship of St Lucia and St Vincent, and in 1854 to South Australia. He arrived at Adelaide on 7 June 1855, and was immediately confronted with an unusual problem. A large number of single emigrant women had been sent to South Australia and over 800 of these had been unable to find work. The new governor decided that their maintenance should be a charge against the land fund, and measures were taken to ensure that there should not be an undue supply of female labour in future. The really important problem of the moment, however, was the form the new constitution should take. MacDonnell himself favoured one chamber, but though at times inclined to be impatient and autocratic, he came to the conclusion when his proposal was rejected, that in this matter it would be better to respect the general feeling of the colonists which was evidently in favour of two houses. Eventually the new constitution provided that both chambers should be elective, that the whole colony should be the electorate for the council, and that it would be divided into 36 districts for the house of assembly. The council voters required a money qualification, but there was manhood suffrage for the assembly. The bill was passed on 2 January and given the royal assent on 24 June 1856.
With the passing of this act the power. and importance of the governor were much decreased. MacDonnell's period was, however, a most important one for South Australia, and quite apart from the question of responsible government, the colony showed great developments. When he arrived there was not a mile of railways open and scarcely 60 miles of made roads, and both were being vigorously formed when he left. Land in cultivation and exports from the colony had both increased nearly 200 per cent, and there were great developments in copper mining. MacDonnell's term of governorship came to an end at the close of 1861, and he left the colony for England early in 1862 after greeting his successor, Sir Dominick Daly, "as a private individual", when he arrived at Adelaide on 4 March. He was appointed governor of Nova Scotia in 1864 and in 1865 became governor of Hong Kong. Ill-health compelled his retirement in 1872, when he returned to England and was not further employed by the British government. He died on 5 February 1881. He married in 1847 Blanche, daughter of Francis Skurray. He was given the honorary degree of LL.D. by Trinity College, Dublin, in 1844, and was created C.B. in 1852, Kt Bach. in 1855, and K.C.M.G. in 1871. Finniss (q.v.), who as colonial secretary and first premier of South Australia, was closely in touch with MacDonnell, says in his Constitutional History of South Auslralia, that MacDonnell used every means which his position gave him to weaken the effect of responsible government, and was reluctant to yield the great prerogative of the governor of a crown colony. He had been used to rule, and no doubt found it difficult to abandon his belief that the office of a governor is to govern. He was a conscientious and able official who showed much administrative ability throughout his career as a governor of crown colonies, and though he had some conflict with his advisers in South Australia, he was otherwise a thoroughly efficient and popular representative of the crown in that colony.
The Times, 8 February 1881; B. T. Finniss, The Constitutional History of South Australia; E. Hodder, The History of South Australia; The Statesman's Year-Book, 1872; Debrett's Peerage, etc., 1879.
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MacFARLAND, SIR JOHN HENRY (1851-1935),chancellor of the university of Melbourne,
son of John MacFarland, draper, and his wife, Margaret Jane, daughter of the Rev. Dr Henry, was born at Omagh, County Tyrone, Ireland, on 19 April 1851. He was educated at the Royal Academical Institution, Belfast, Queens College, Belfast, and St John's College, Cambridge, where he graduated with a first class in the mathematical tripos in 1876. He was a master at Repton school until 1880, when he was chosen to be the first master of Ormond College in the university of Melbourne. At the opening of the college on 18 March 1881, MacFarland in replying to a speech of welcome said that "while there would be a freedom from those petty rules which after a certain age cease to be beneficial and become only irksome, the students would enjoy--he hoped he might say enjoy--a healthy discipline". This was the keynote of his success as master. There was a legend that he saw and heard everything that went on in the building, but he seldom interfered, he never harassed the students, and there were few disciplinary difficulties. Before the end of the first year 27 students were in residence, and an enlargement of the building was begun in January 1884. A few years later the number of resident students rose to 90, making it the largest college of its kind in Australia. MacFarland could be very firm with a student when the occasion demanded it, but he could also be very kind, and though always careful to do nothing that would undermine a proper spirit of independence, there were many occasions when he was able to give help to students who needed it. In 1899 he was a valuable member of the royal commission on technical education, and in 1902, when serious defalcations were discovered in the university accounts, MacFarland, who had been a member of the council since 1886, was appointed chairman of the finance committee. He vigilantly supervised the accounts for some years until gradually the position was straightened, and the amounts lost had been repaid to the trust funds. In 1910 he was elected vice-chancellor of the university, and four years later resigned his mastership of Ormond. In 1918 he was elected chancellor, and until the appointment of a full-time paid vice-chancellor, less than a year before his death, he gave the greater part of his time to the work of the university. He was also able to do much work for the Presbyterian Church, for which he was chairman of the board of investment, and of the councils of the Scotch College, and the Presbyterian Ladies College, Melbourne. He was also a member of the Felton (q.v.) bequest committee, which decides on the spending of a large sum annually in charity, and in buying objects of art for the national gallery of Victoria. He became ill in 1934, and operations giving him little relief, he died at Melbourne on 22 July 1935. He was given the honorary degree of LL.D. by the Royal university of Ireland, Queen's university of Belfast, and the university of Adelaide. He was knighted in 1919. There is an excellent portrait of him by Longstaff (q.v.) at the university of Melbourne.
MacFarland was tall and spare, brisk of mind and body, and sparing of words. There is a story that he was asked to decide on one of three courses of action which were lettered A.B.C. and that his reply was Dear--, B. J.H.M. His quickness of speaking sometimes suggested brusqueness, but his disarming smile and evident good humour soon removed any impression of that kind. It has been said that his success with his students was based on the fact that he thought of them as boys, and treated them as men. He was an ideal chancellor who believed in and encouraged the self-government of the students whenever it was possible. To the staff he was a firm rock to lean against when required, wise in council when a decision had to be made. There was no room for petty jealousy at a university with MacFarland at its head, for it was assumed that whatever was being done was for the good of the whole institution. He left a tradition of wisdom, justice, and virtue, and distinguished old students of his college have carried on his tradition in many parts of the world.
MacFarland never married and so long as he could get some golf during the week, and a trout-fishing holiday in New Zealand during the long vacation, his wants and expenses were few. He was able to give away a good deal of money in an unostentatious way, including the cost of a swimming pool for the boys at Scotch College and £1000 to a university appeal. After his death it was disclosed that an anonymous gift of £8200 made to Ormond College in 1932 to found scholarships had come from its former master. His will was proved at over £60,000 of which about £20,000 was eventually destined to go to Ormond College, while most of the remainder will be devoted to educational and other institutions of the Presbyterian Church.
The Argus and The Age, 23 July 1935; The Ormond Chronicle, 1935; Sir Ernest Scott, A History of the University of Melbourne; Calendar of Ormond College, 1882; personal knowledge; private information.
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McGOWEN, JAMES SINCLAIR TAYLOR (1855-1922),first labour premier of New South Wales,
was born of English parents at sea on 16 August 1855. His father was on his way to Melbourne under contract to the Victorian government as a bridge builder, and the family landed at Melbourne three weeks later. Removing afterwards to Sydney, McGowen was apprenticed to a firm of boiler-makers. At 19 years of age he became secretary to the Boilermakers Society and held this position until he was 25. He entered the railways department, in 1888 was elected president of the executive of Trades Hall committee, and worked hard and successfully to raise funds to build the Trades Hall at Sydney. He was elected as member of the legislative assembly for Redfern in 1891, and three years later succeeded Joseph Cook as leader of the parliamentary Labour party. At the election for representatives of New South Wales at the federal convention of 1897 McGowen polled highest of the Labour group with 39,000 votes. In October 1910 he became premier and colonial treasurer in the first Labour government to come into power in New South Wales. In the following year he visited England at the time of the coronation of King George V, in November 1911 gave up the treasurership, and in June 1913 resigned the position of premier in favour of Holman (q.v.) and was given the portfolio of minister of labour and industry. In 1917 he was in favour of conscription and consequently lost the party nomination at the election held in that year. He stood as an independent Labour candidate but was defeated. He had represented Redfern for 26 years. He regretted his defeat but said that if he were faced with the same question again he would take the same course. "A man's country should always be before his party." He was nominated to the legislative council, and remained a member until his death, still fighting for the same principles that he had always held to be right. He was chairman of the housing board until shortly before his death, and for some time acted as censor of moving pictures. He died on 7 April 1922 and was survived by his wife, five sons and two daughters.
McGowen took a keen interest in cricket in his younger days, and helped to establish electorate cricket in Sydney. He was an earnest Sunday-school and church worker, a man of absolute sincerity and honesty, who made personal friends of his most extreme political opponents. He was not a great leader neither had he unusual ability, but the rising Labour party was much feared in those days, and wisdom was shown in selecting as leader a moderate man with a likeable personality and a reputation for rugged honesty.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 8 April 1922; The Australian Worker, 12 April 1922; H. V. Evatt, Australian Labour Leader; Who's Who, 1922.
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MACGREGOR, SIR WILLIAM (1846-1919),administrator, governor of Queensland,
was born in the parish of Towie, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, on 20 October 1846 (Dict.Nat.Biog.). He was the eldest son of John Macgregor, a farm labourer. Educated at the school at Tillyduke, and encouraged by his master and the local minister who recognized the boy's ability, he studied for and obtained a bursary which took him to Aberdeen and Glasgow universities. He graduated M.B. and C.M. of Aberdeen university in 1872, and obtained his M.D. in 1874. He helped to pay for his university course by obtaining farm work during his vacations. In 1873 he became assistant medical officer at the Seychelles, and in 1874 he was appointed resident at the hospital and superintendent of the lunatic asylum at Mauritius. This brought him under the notice of Sir Arthur Gordon who was then governor of the island, and on Gordon being transferred to Fiji in 1875, he obtained Macgregor's services as chief medical officer of Fiji. There he had to grapple with a terrible epidemic of measles, which resulted in the death of 50,000 natives. In 1877 he was made receiver-general and subsequently a variety of other offices was added, including the colonial secretaryship. On more than one occasion he acted as governor, and was also acting high commissioner and consul-general for the western Pacific. In 1884 the ship Syria, with coolies for Fiji, ran ashore about 15 miles from Suva. Macgregor organized a relief expedition and personally saved several lives. His report made no mention of his own doings, but they could not remain hidden, and he was given the Albert medal, and the Clarke gold medal of the Royal Humane Society of Australasia for saving life at sea. In January 1886 he represented Fiji at the meeting of the federal council of Australasia held at Hobart. His experience with native races led to his being appointed administrator of British New Guinea in 1888. Here he had to deal with a warlike people cut up into many tribes, and his great problem was to get them to live together in reasonable amity. It was necessary at times to make punitive expeditions, but bloodshed was avoided as much as possible, and by tact and perseverance Macgregor eventually brought about a state of law and order. He did a large amount of exploration not only along the coast but into the interior. In 1892 the position was sufficiently settled to enable him to publish a Handbook of Information for intending Settlers in British New Guinea. He was appointed lieutenant-governor in 1895, and retired from this position in 1898. From 1899 to 1904 he was governer of Lagos where he instituted a campaign against the prevalent malaria, draining the swamps and destroying as far as possible the mosquitoes which were responsible for the spread of the disease. Much other important work in developing the country was done by making roads and building a railway. His efforts to improve the health of his community led to his being given the Mary Kingsley medal in 1910 by the Society of Tropical Medicine. He had been transferred in 1904 to Newfoundland of which he was governor for five years. Here again his medical knowledge was most useful in the combating of tuberculosis which was then very prevalent in Newfoundland. He also did valuable work in dealing with the fisheries question, persuading the contending parties to refer the dispute to the Hague international tribunal which brought about an amicable settlement. Towards the end of 1909 he became governor of Queensland. The claim that he was largely responsible for the founding of the university of Queensland cannot be justified, as the university act had been passed by the Kidston (q.v.) government before he arrived. He, however, did all that was possible to help in the actual inauguration of the university. He acquiesced in the handing over of government house to be its first home, and one of his first acts was to attend the dedication ceremony on 10 December 1909. He also became the first chancellor and took great pride in the early development of the university. In 1914 he retired and went to live on an estate in Berwickshire, Scotland. During the 1914-18 war he was able to do a certain amount of war work, and also lectured on his experience of German rule in the Pacific. He died on 3 July 1919 and was buried beside his parents in the churchyard of Towie, the village where he was born. He married in 1883 Mary, daughter of R. Cocks, who survived him with one son and three daughters. He was created C.M.G. in 1881, K.C.M.G. in 1889, C.B. in 1897, G.C.M.G. in 1907, and was made a privy councillor in 1914. He had the honorary degrees of D.Sc. Cambridge and LL.D. Aberdeen, Edinburgh, and Queensland.
Macgregor was a man of immense physical strength, it has been said of him in his early days that he was like a "great block of rough unhewn granite". He began life with no advantages except his innate ability, and rose to be one of the really great men of his time. He was a fine linguist; apart from his home universities he had studied at Paris, Berlin and Florence, and he was an excellent scientist, as his medical work done at Fiji, Lagos and Newfoundland showed. He was a great administrator--always working for the good of the subject races and helping them to develop, and yet able on more than one occasion to save his own life by his excellence as a rifle shot. Contact with a world of men gradually softened a certain roughness of manner, until he became the courteous man of his later years. But he was always a great personality, a great fighter, striving continually for the cause of right and justice, and using his scientific knowledge for the good of humanity.
R. W. Reid, Aberdeen University Review, November 1919; Who's Who, 1919; G. B. Fletcher, The New Pacific; C. A. Bernays, Queensland Politics During Sixty Years; The Brisbane Courier, 5 July 1919.
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McILWRAITH, SIR THOMAS (1835-1900),premier of Queensland,
son of John McIlwraith, was born at Ayr, Scotland, in 1835. He was educated at Ayr academy and the university of Glasgow, where he studied civil engineering. He emigrated to Victoria in 1854 and obtained a position as a civil engineer in the railways department, and afterwards with Messrs Cornish and Bruce, railway contractors. In 1862, having acquired interests in pastoral property in the Maronoa district, he went to Queensland, and in 1868 was elected as representative of that constituency in the legislative assembly. In January 1874 he became secretary for public works and mines in the third Macalister (q.v.) ministry but resigned in the following October. In January 1879 he formed a ministry in which he was premier and successively colonial treasurer and colonial secretary, at a time when the colony was emerging from a depression brought on by three bad seasons. The year 1878-9 closed with a serious deficit, but McIlwraith, helped by good seasons and partly by loan expenditure, brought about an increase in revenue which turned the deficit into a surplus. Immigrants too were pouring in and the colony was developing very rapidly. The population, however' in 1883 was still under 300,000 scattered over a very large area, and the necessity for some general system of local government led to the passing of the divisional boards act. Another important event was the establishment of the British India postal service via Torres Strait but what caused most stir was the annexation of New Guinea carried out under McIlwraith's instructions on 4 April 1883. This met with general approval in Australia, but was disallowed by Lord Derby the secretary of state for the colonies. The result was that the way was left open to Germany to annex a large part of the island. But the incident brought home to the Australian colonies, how hampered they were in making representations to the British government by the absence of any central authority that could speak with one voice for all of them. The executive council of Queensland in July 1883 decided to invite the home government to inaugurate a federal movement. Service (q.v.), the Victorian premier, however, took the more practical step of proposing that an inter-colonial conference should be held, which accordingly took place at the end of November. This was the first real step in the direction of federation, with which McIlwraith was warmly in sympathy. His ministry was defeated in November 1883, on the question of his proposal to construct the Queensland portion of a trans-continental railway line on a land grant system. McIlwraith had been made a K.C.M.G. in 1882 and in 1884 visited Great Britain, where he was given the freedom of his native town, and Glasgow university conferred on him the honorary degree of LL.D.
McIlwraith temporarily retired from politics in 1886 but in 1888 was elected for Brisbane North. His party had a majority, and on 13 June 1888 he formed his second ministry with the portfolios of premier and colonial treasurer. Failing health obliged hint to resign these positions in November, though he was able to be a minister without portfolio in the Morehead (q.v.) government formed at the end of that month. During his short term of office he came into conflict with the governor, Sir Anthony Musgrave, on the question whether in the exercise of the prerogative of mercy the governor must accept the advice of his advisors, or use his own judgment. The colonial office supported McIlwraith's contention that the first course must be followed. When the governor died in October McIlwraith represented to the home authorities that his government should be consulted before Musgrave's succcessor was appointed. Lord Knutsford refused to agree to this and appointed Sir Harry Blake. McIlwraith protested on behalf of his government, and the matter was only settled for the time being by the voluntary retirement of Sir Harry Blake. McIlwraith then took a trip to China and Japan for the benefit of his health. When he returned differences arose with his colleagues, and in August 1890 he made a coalition with his former opponent Sir Samuel Griffith (q.v.) and became colonial treasurer in his government. He was one of the representatives of Queensland at the federal convention held at Sydney in 1891, and was on the finance committee. He succeeded Griffith in March 1893 and became premier in a new government, holding also the positions of secretary for railways and vice-president of the executive council. On 24 October he handed over the premiership to Sir Hugh Nelson and became chief secretary. He, however, resigned his seat towards the end of 1895. He was offered the agent-generalship of Queensland but declined it. He had become involved in the financial crisis of 1893, and spent his last years in broken health trying to piece together his shattered fortunes. He died at London on 17 July 1900. He married in 1879 Harriette Ann, daughter of Hugh Mosman, who survived him with three daughters.
McIlwraith was a big man with big ideas, but his indifferent health did not allow him to successfully carry the full burden of them. He was rugged and masterful, possibly on occasions not over-scrupulous, with a habit of getting his own way by sheer force of character rather than by intellectual ability. For nearly 25 years he was one of the greatest personalities in Queensland.
The Brisbane Courier, 19 July 1900; Our First Half-century, A Review of Queensland Progress; Quick and Garran, The Annotated Constitution of the Australian Commonwealth; The Bulletin, 28 July 1900; P. Mennell, The Dictionary of Australasian Biography.
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McINNES, WILLIAM BECKWITH (1889-1939),artist,
was born at Ringwood near Melbourne, on 18 May 1889. He was a somewhat delicate child who wanted to draw from the time he could first handle a pencil. At the age of 14 he entered the drawing school at the national gallery of Victoria under Frederick McCubbin (q.v.), and later on graduated into the painting school under L. Bernard Hall (q.v.). When only 17 he submitted a very promising painting for the scholarship competition, but three years later the picture he sent in did not do him justice, and though probably the ablest student of his time, he was not placed either first or second. In 1908 he won the first prizes for drawing the figure from life, and for painting a head from life, and shared the prize for a landscape. Soon afterwards he held a successful show of his paintings at the Athenaeum gallery in conjunction with F. R. Crozier, which was followed in 1911 by a journey to Europe, where he did much landscape painting and made acquaintance with the masterpieces of Rembrandt, Velasquez and Raeburn. He never wavered in his allegiance to these men and their methods. He was represented in London at the exhibition of the Royal Institute of Painters in oils in 1913, and returned to Melbourne in the same year. He held a one man show at the Athenaeum gallery and nearly everything was sold. In 1916 he acted as locum tenens for Frederick McCubbin, master of the school of drawing at the national gallery, Melbourne, during his six months' leave of absence, and after his death was temporarily appointed to the position in 1918. In 1920 he was permanently appointed. In 1921 he won the Archibald prize for portraiture, a success repeated in the three following years. He revisited Europe in 1925 and on his return found he was in great demand as a portrait painter. For many years he was unable to spare time to do landscape work. In 1928 one of his portraits was well hung at the Royal Academy, and in 1933 he visited England again to paint the Duke of York, afterwards King George VI. In the following year, on Bernard Hall leaving for England as adviser for the Felton bequest, McInnes was appointed acting-director of the national gallery of Victoria, and on Mr Hall's death was appointed head of the painting school. McInnes had suffered from an imperfect heart all his life, his general health became affected' and in July 1939 he resigned his position as master of the school of painting. He died on 9 November 1939. He married in 1915 Violet Muriel Musgrave, a capable flower painter, who survived him with four sons and two daughters.
McInnes was a man of slightly under medium height stockily built. He was kindly in his disposition, had no enemies and many friends. He was quiet in manner and somewhat inarticulate. Though he was for a great many years on the council of the Victorian Artists' Society, and president for one year of the Australian Art Association, he was content to leave problems of administration to other people. He was interested in the newly-formed Australian Academy of Art, because he considered it was necessary to have a body which could speak for Australian artists as a whole, and sat on its council for two or three years before his death. But his painting was his life and he had practically no recreations or interests outside his art. Somewhat conservative in his outlook, he was opposed to the extreme wing of the modernist school, and would not allow the movement to have any influence on his own work. As a landscape painter be was excellent in composition and sound in drawing, with a fine feeling for air and sunlight. His portraits were finely modelled, soundly painted, excellent likenesses and in many cases fine studies of character. He is represented in national galleries at Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth, and at Canberra, Castlemaine and other galleries. A self-portrait is in the Sydney gallery.
A. Colquhoun, The Work of W. Beckwith McInnes; W. Moore, The Story of Australian Art; The Herald, Melbourne, 9 November 1939; The Age and The Argus, Melbourne, 10 November 1939; The Book of the Public Library, 1906-31; personal knowledge.
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McKAY, HUGH VICTOR (1865-1926),inventor of the Sunshine harvester,
was born at Raywood, Victoria, on 21 August 1865. He was the fifth of the 12 children of Nathaniel McKay who had been a stonemason and then a miner, before becoming a small farmer about the end of 1865. He built a house of rough slabs roofed with bark and there his son grew up, became an efficient ploughman, and began to manage his father's farm at 18 years of age. His education had been confined to a comparatively short period at the little country state school at Drummartin, supplemented by some tuition at home. His father had a hard struggle, but everyone in the family helped, conditions improved, a reaper and binder was purchased, and later on a stripper. This had been invented by John Ridley (q.v.) many years before, and as the boy drove it he began to consider whether it might be possible to make a machine which would gather, thresh, and clean the grain as it went through the crop. He was only 17 when he told his father that he was confident that a machine of this kind could be built. With the help of his brother a rough hut was put up, and there the two young men made a machine with parts from old strippers and winnowers, forging other iron parts, and shaping the wood-work themselves. Their father was able to help them in squaring and setting the frame, and adjusting the bearings. Each problem was tackled and worked out as it occurred, and in February 1884, drawn by two horses, the little machine stripped, threshed and cleaned the grain from two acres of land. It worked almost perfectly, the parts co-ordinating and running smoothly from the beginning.
McKay had, however, no capital and the problem was how to put his invention on the market. A few were made by McCalman and Garde, plough makers, and by other manufacturers, but it was not until 1887, when he obtained a premium from the Victorian government for the best combined harvesting machine, that McKay was able to think seriously of starting for himself. He worked with one fitter for some time, and in 1891 was established in Dawson-street, Ballarat, under the name of McKay's Harvesting Machine Co. Ltd. About 1892-3 the model which afterwards became known as the Sunshine Harvester took shape. Gradually the business grew until in 1905 about 400 hands were employed at Ballarat. In the following year the factory was removed to Braybrook, afterwards known as Sunshine, partly because an export trade was growing and the question of freight became more important; and partly because the new site being outside the then metropolitan area, the factory did not come under wages board regulations. It was not that McKay objected to paying a full wage, but because he liked to feel that the factory was under his own control. For a similar reason he fought his men when the strike took place in 1911. He believed in the open shop and though only twelve out of his 1000 employees were not unionists, he took the stand that he would not himself force any man to join a union nor would he allow anyone else to force him. He was, however, thoroughly interested in the welfare of his men and parcelled out land at Sunshine into allotments with 50 feet of frontage, and paid for the roads, water reticulation, and electric lighting. By 1926 Sunshine was to become a town with over 4000 inhabitants. In 1913 McKay stood for the house of representatives at Ballarat but was beaten by the Labour candidate by a few votes. In the same year he made possible the erection of a technical school at Sunshine, and during the 1914-18 war he converted his factory to the manufacturing of transport and ambulance wagons, water-carts, portable kitchens, trenching tools, and munitions. He was a member of the business board of administration, defence department 1917-18, and was chairman of the stores disposal board in London in 1919. He was also for some Years vice-president of the chamber of manufacturers, Melbourne, and a director of well-known companies. In March 1925 he went to England and became seriously ill. He was brought back to Australia, but never recovered his health and died at Sunbury on 21 May 1926. He married Sarah Irene Graves, who survived him with two sons and a daughter. He was created C.B.E. in 1918. His will was proved at over £1,400,000. Under it provision was made for a charitable trust expected to have an income of about £10,000 a year. This was to be devoted to improving the conditions of life in inland Australia, the advancement of agricultural education, and charitable works in Sunshine or any other place where manufacturing may be established by the company.
McKay was a man of great tenacity of purpose and strength of character. He was a strict disciplinarian but scrupulously just. He built up the largest agricultural implement manufactury in the southern hemisphere, the buildings of which covered 28 acres of land in the year of his death. In the garden [in] front of the factory is the original small bark-roofed hut in which the first harvester was fashioned in 1884.
The Argus, Melbourne, 22 May and 6 August 1926; A Farm Smithy: A Record of Vision and Pluck.
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MACKELLAR, SIR CHARLES KINNAIRD (1844-1926),physician and public man,
son of Dr Frank Mackellar, was born at Sydney, on 5 December 1844. He was educated at Sydney grammar school and on leaving school had some experience on a station. About 1866 he went to Glasgow, did a distinguished course, and graduated M.B., Ch.M. in 1871. On returning to Australia he again went on the land, but in 1875 went to Sydney and established a very successful practice as a physician. In 1882 he was appointed the first president of the newly formed board of health, which brought him in touch with the poor of Sydney and the conditions in which they lived. He took much interest in his new position, and gave the department an excellent start. He resigned his office in 1885, and in the following year was nominated to the legislative council of New South Wales. He was vice-president of the executive council in the Jennings (q.v.) ministry from February to December 1886, and then minister for justice until the government was defeated on 19 January 1887. But though a good administrator, Mackellar was not a party man, and possibly for that reason did not hold parliamentary office again. In 1903 Mackellar was appointed a federal senator when R. E. O'Connor (q.v.) was made a judge of the high court. He found, however, that he had too many interests in Sydney to be able to spare the time to attend the sittings which were then held at Melbourne, and not long afterwards resumed his seat in the legislative council of New South Wales. He had been chosen as president of a royal commission on the decline of the birth rate, and was largely responsible for the admirable report that was issued. He had for some time been interested in the care of delinquent and mentally deficient children and in 1902 was appointed president of the state children's relief department. He published this year as a pamphlet, Parental Rights and Parental Responsibility, which was followed in 1907 by a thoughtful short treatise, The Child, The Law, and the State, an account of the progress of reform of the laws affecting children in New South Wales, with suggestions for their amendment and more humane and effective application. His little book was wise and statesmanlike; Mackellar was no mere visionary, he recognized that there were times when punishment was the only remedy, but he felt strongly that little good would be done by punishing a child for acts which were merely the results of his environment, and that children could not be given the influence of a good home by being herded in barracks or reformatories. In 1912 he visited Europe and the United States to study the methods of treatment of delinquent and neglected children, and issued a valuable report on his return in 1913. He resigned his presidency of the state children's relief board in 1916, being then in his seventy-second year. He still, however, retained his interest and in 1917 published an open letter to the minister of public health on "The Mother, the Baby, and the State", and a pamphlet on Mental Deficiency, in which his clear grasp of the subject was still apparent. He died at Sydney, on 14 July 1926. He was knighted in 1912 and created K.C.M.G. in 1916. He married in 1877, Marion, daughter of Thomas Buckland, who survived him with two sons and a daughter.
Mackellar was a good companion and a staunch friend, kindly and just in all life's relations. He was a combination of sound business man and altruist, and his social work in New South Wales had far-reaching consequences for good. His daughter, Dorothea Mackellar, did distinguished work as a poet and prose-writer. A list of her books will be found in Miller's Australian Literature.
The Medical journal of Australia, 7 August 1926; The Sydney Morning Herald, 15 July 1926; Debrett's Peerage, etc., 1926.
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MACKENNAL, SIR EDGAR BERTRAM (1863-1931), the first name was dropped at an early age,sculptor,
son of John Simpson Mackennal, was born at Melbourne on 12 June 1863. His father was also a sculptor and both parents were of Scotch descent. He received his early training from his father, and at the school of design at the Melbourne national gallery which he attended from 1878 to 1882. Marshall Wood, the English sculptor, who visited Australia in 1880, strongly advised the boy to go abroad. He left for London in 1882 to study at the national gallery schools, and for a time shared a studio with C. Douglas Richardson (q.v.) and Tom Roberts (q.v.). In 1884 he visited Paris for further study and married a fellow student, Agnes Spooner. On returning to England he obtained a position at the Coalport china factory as a designer and modeller. In 1886 he won a competition for the sculptured reliefs on the front of parliament house, Melbourne, and returned to Australia in 1887 to carry these out. While in Australia he obtained other commissions, including the figure over the doorway of Mercantile Chambers, Collins-street, Melbourne. He also met Sara Bernhardt, who was on a professional visit to Australia, and strongly advised the young man to return to Paris, which he did in 1891. In 1893 he had his first success, when his full length figure "Circe", now at the national gallery at Melbourne, obtained a "mention" at the Salon and created a good deal of interest. It was exhibited later at the Royal Academy where it also aroused great interest, partly because of the prudery of the hanging committee which insisted that the base should be covered. Commissions began to flow in, among them being the figures "Oceana" and "Grief' for the Union Club, Sydney. Two Melbourne commissions brought him to Australia again in 1901, the memorial to Sir W. J. Clarke at the treasury gardens, Melbourne, and the figure for the mausoleum of Mrs Springthorpe at Kew. He returned to London, and among his works of this period were the fine pediment for the local government board office at Westminster, a Boer War memorial for Islington, and statues of Queen Victoria for Ballarat, Lahore, and Blackburn. In 1907 his marble group "The Earth and the Elements" was purchased for the national gallery of British art under the Chantry bequest, and in 1908 his "Diana Wounded" was also bought for the nation. This dual success brought Mackennal into great prominence, and he was elected an associate of the Royal Academy in 1909. In the following year he designed the Coronation medal for King George V and also the new coinage which gave general satisfaction. His next important piece of work was the memorial to Gainsborough at Sudbury, which was followed by the memorial tomb of King Edward VII at St George's Chapel, Windsor. He also did statues of King Edward for London, Melbourne, Calcutta and Adelaide. He was created a Knight Commander of the Victorian Order in 1921, and was elected R.A. in 1922. Among his later works were the nude male figure for the Eton war memorial, the war memorial to the members of both houses of parliament at London, the figures of the soldier and the sailor for the cenotaph in Martin Place, Sydney, the bronze statue of King George V at parliament house Canberra, and the head of "Victory", presented to the Commonwealth by the artist, also at Canberra. He completed the Anzac memorial at the Suez Canal from the designs of Web Gilbert (q.v.) a little while before his death. He died suddenly at his house, Watcombe Hall, near Torquay, on 10 October 1931, and was survived by Lady Mackennal and a daughter.
Mackennal, though a good business man, never lost his ideals or enthusiasm. He considered that the fraternity of artists were to be envied as men who had chosen their own careers, and were ever striving to express their individuality. He had many friends and often showed his sympathy with young and promising artists. He was well read and his sense of humour made him a good companion. His work showed much variety, he has been described as a "classical realist, with a strong decorative bent". His figures are graceful and dignified, his decorative detail often charming. He ranks as the most distinguished Australian sculptor of his time. Reference has already been made to many of his works; other examples will be found at the national galleries at Melbourne and Sydney.
Records of Drawing School, National Gallery, Melbourne; The Bulletin, 13 April 1901; The Times, 12 October 1931; The Argus, Melbourne, 13 October 1931.
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MACKENZIE, SIR ROBERT RAMSEY BART. (1811-1873),premier of Queensland,
[In the Australian Dictionary of Biography the spelling is 'Ramsay', and his father's middle name is shown as 'Steuart'. Ed.]
the son of Sir George Stewart Mackenzie, F.R.S., and his wife, Mary McLeod, was born on 21 July 1811. He emigrated to New South Wales before 1830, and afterwards went to Queensland. He was elected a member of the first Queensland parliament for Burnet in 1860, and was colonial treasurer in the first cabinet until 4 August 1862. He was colonial secretary in the Macalister (q.v.) ministry from 1 February to 20 July 1866, and on 15 August 1867 became premier and colonial treasurer. He resigned on 25 November 1868, and succeeding his brother on 21 December, became a baronet and returned to Scotland. He died in London on 19 September 1873. He married in 1846, Louisa Jones of Sydney, and there was a family of one son and three daughters. Mackenzie was not a man of great ability, but he was a good organizer and administrator of some prominence in the early days of Queensland, before his succeeding to the family estates led to his leaving Australia.
Burke's Peerage, etc., 1873; C. A. Bernays, Queensland Politics During Sixty Years; The Times, 23 and 24 September 1873; J. F. Campbell, Journal and Proceedings Royal Australian Historical Society, vol. VIII, p. 262.
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MACKENZIE, SIR WILLIAM COLIN (1877-1938), he was seldom known by his first name,anatomist,
was the youngest son of John and Anne Mackenzie. He was born at Kilmore, Victoria, on 9 March 1877, obtained a scholarship at the local state school, and continued his education at Scotch College, Melbourne. He qualified for matriculation with honours in Greek at the end of 1893, and beginning his course at the university of Melbourne soon afterwards, graduated M.B., B.S., with first class honours in surgery in 1899. He had a year's hospital practice at the Melbourne hospital, for two years was senior resident medical officer at the Children's hospital, and was in general practice for some time at North Melbourne. In 1904 he paid his first visit to Europe and obtained by examination his fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh. At the Children's hospital, Melbourne, he had been much interested in the problem of the after treatment of infantile paralysis, and while in Europe worked with Professor Vulpius at Heidelberg, and studied the work being done by Sir Robert Jones at Liverpool. Coming back to Australia, he found there was then a severe epidemic of infantile paralysis, and was able to use his newly acquired knowledge of the principles of muscle rest and recovery. He was not, however, content to merely follow other men. He felt that the main problem was how to bring the muscles into normal use again, and however commonplace his methods may seem today, at the time, they appeared to be revolutionary. He was the first to Speak of "muscle re-education" and to realize the importance of the action of gravity in attempts to regain muscle function. A few years later Sir Arthur Keith in his Menders of the Maimed, (1919), paid a tribute to Mackenzie's work in this direction. "Dr Mackenzie," said, "makes no claim to be the discoverer of the 'minimal load' treatment of disabled muscles, but I am certain that no one has realized its practical importance more than he, and no one has realized and applied the right methods to the restoration of disabled muscles with a greater degree of skill." This recognition, however, came many years later, and during the first decade of this century Mackenzie had to do much research in finding out what could be done. Mackenzie was appointed Caroline Kay scholar and demonstrator in anatomy at the university of Melbourne in 1907 under Professor R. J. A. Berry, and about this time became much interested in the fauna of Australia. He leased land at Badger Creek, near Healesville, Victoria, which subsequently became the Colin Mackenzie sanctuary, and he spent much time on the unravelling of the anatomical details of the koala, the platypus, the wombat, and other Australian animals. Early in 1915 he went to England, did further work in anatomy, and assisted Sir Arthur Keith in the cataloguing of war specimens. In 1917 he organized a muscle re-education department for Sir Robert Jones at the orthopaedic military hospital at Shepherd's Bush, London, and in 1918 published his The Action of Muscles (reprinted in 1919, second ed. 1930). Another book published in 1918 was the seventh edition of Treves's Surgical Applied Anatomy, in the revision of which Mackenzie had collaborated with Sir Arthur Keith. He returned in the same year to Melbourne and gave his time more and more to comparative anatomy, and the collecting of Australian faunal specimens. He published in 1918, The Gastro-Intestinal Tract in Monotremes and Marsupials, and The Liver, Spleen, Pancreas Peritoneal Relations and Bileary System in Monotremes and Marsupials; in 1919 with W. J. Owen, The Glandular System in Monotremes and Marsupials, and The Genito-Urinary System in Monotremes and Marsupials. His collection of specimens became very large and valuable, and he refused an American offer of a large sum for it because he preferred to give it to the nation. In 1924 an act was passed establishing the Australasian Institute of Anatomical Research to house the collection at Canberra, and Mackenzie was made the first director with the title of professor of comparative anatomy. He published in this year a short volume on Intellectual Development and the Erect Posture. In his later years he did some work in anthropology which was less successful than his anatomical work. He had badly over-worked himself, he had severe blood pressure, and his mind was losing its powers. There was progressive deterioration, and in October 1937 Mackenzie was obliged to give up his position. He returned to Melbourne and died there on 29 June 1938. He was president of the zoological section of the Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science in 1928, was a fellow of the Royal Society, Edinburgh, and was knighted in 1929. He married in 1928, Dr Winifred Smith, who survived him. There were no children. He founded. before his death, the Anne Mackenzie Annual Oration at the Institute of Anatomy, Canberra, in memory of his mother, formerly Anne MacKay, a woman of great character.
Mackenzie had two brothers who were well-known footballers, and he retained his interest in the game throughout his life. In his latest book he suggested that the Australian game was an important element in the health of the community. He was, however, chiefly interested in the relief of human suffering, and the furtherance of science. His work in connexion with the after-treatment of cases of infantile paralysis was of remarkable value, as was also his study of the anatomy of the Australian fauna. His monument is his great collection of specimens housed at Canberra, which has since had many valuable additions made to it.
Dr C. V. MacKay, The Medical Journal of Australia, 1 October 1938, which has a short list of Mackenzie's more important papers, and other tributes in the same issue; The British Medical Journal, 20 August 1938; The Lancet, 9 July 1938; The Scotch Collegian, August 1938; The Herald, 29 June 1938; The Age and The Argus, Melbourne, 30 June 1938; private information.
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McKINLAY, JOHN (1819-1872),explorer,
[ also refer to John McKINLAY page at Project Gutenberg Australia]
was born at Sandbank on the Clyde, Scotland, in 1819, and emigrated to Sydney when 17 years of age. He began his colonial experience with an uncle who was a squatter, and afterwards made his way to near the border of South Australia, where he took up land between there and the Darling. He was interested in the aborigines of the district, and his knowledge of their ways was of great use to him when he became an explorer. In 1861 he was asked by the South Australian government to organize an expedition to search for the Burke (q.v.) and Wills (q.v.) party about whose fate there was then much anxiety. McKinlay left Adelaide on 16 August 1861 with nine other men, 70 sheep, two packhorses and four camels. On 20 October the grave of Gray was found near Cooper's Creek. McKinlay sent word of this to the government, and soon afterwards learned that the remains of Burke and Wills had also been found. He decided to explore in the direction of Mount Stuart, but was driven back by heavy rains and floods. McKinlay then decided to make for the Gulf of Carpentaria, hoping to find the vessel which had been sent to meet Burke's party. The shores of the Gulf were thought to be only four or five miles away, on 20 May 1862, but the intervening country was very difficult, and it was decided to turn in an easterly direction and make for Port Denison on the shores of northern Queensland. A station on the Bowen River near Port Denison was reached on 2 August, and, after a few days rest, Port Denison. The party then returned by sea to Adelaide. McKinlay received a grant of £1000 from the government and a gold watch from the Royal Geographical Society of England.
In 1863 McKinlay married Miss Pile, the daughter of an old friend, but was not allowed to settle down for long. In September 1865 he was sent to explore the Northern Territory and to report on the best sites for settlement. It was an exceptionally rainy season and while on the Alligator River the expedition was surrounded by flood waters. With great resource McKinlay, having killed his horses, constructed a raft with their hides and made a perilous journey to the coast. He reported favourably on the country near Anson Bay as being suitable for settlement. After his return he took up pastoral pursuits near the town of Gawler in South Australia, and died there on 31 December 1872. A monument to his memory was erected at Gawler in 1875.
McKinlay was a man of fine physique, 6 feet 3½ inches high, modest and unassuming. He was an excellent bushman, making little of his privations, knowing when to push on and when to be cautious, and though he made only two expeditions, he ranks among the great explorers of Australia.
G. E. Logan, The Gawler Handbook, p. 161; John Davis, Tracks of McKinlay and Party Across Australia; McKinlay's Journal of Exploration; The South Australian Register, 1 January, 1873.
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McLAREN, DAVID (1785-1850),pioneer,
was born at Perth, Scotland, in 1785. He had been intended for the ministry but adopted a business life. In 1836 he was appointed manager of the South Australian Company, and arrived at Adelaide in April 1837, at a time when the whole settlement was in a state of confusion. Hampered at first by the inefficiency of the former manager, S. Stephens, who was retained in a subordinate capacity, McLaren had many anxieties and difficulties. He knew nothing about whaling and the company made losses in that department, but he showed great ability in developing its banking and pastoral departments. He was responsible for the construction of the Port Adelaide Road, a valuable piece of work, and built a wharf which still bears his name. In 1841 he returned to England, having firmly and successfully established his company. He was made manager in London and died on 22 June 1850.
An austere, deeply religious man, McLaren was a good influence in the little community at Adelaide, and did very valuable work as a pioneer. His son, Alexander McLaren (1826-1910), became a famous Baptist divine in England.
A. Grenfell Price, Founders and Pioneers of South Australia; Rev. J. Blacket, History of South Australia.
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McLAREN, SAMUEL BRUCE (1876-1916),mathematician,
son of Samuel Gilfillan McLaren, was born at Tokyo, Japan, where his father was a missionary, on 16 August 1876. His father came to Australia in 1885, and in 1889 was appointed principal of the Presbyterian ladies' college, Melbourne. His son was educated at Brighton grammar school and Scotch College, Melbourne, where he was dux in mathematics in 1893 and gained a scholarship at Ormond College, university of Melbourne. He qualified for the B.A. degree at the end of 1896 with first class final honours, and the final honours and Wyselaskie scholarships in mathematics. He also shared the Dixon scholarship in natural philosophy. Proceeding to England in 1897 he entered Trinity College, Cambridge, was elected into a major scholarship in 1899, and was third wrangler in the same year. Taking part 2 of the mathematical tripos in his third year he was placed in the second division of the first class. He was awarded an Isaac Newton studentship in 1901, and graduated M.A. in 1905. He had been appointed lecturer in mathematics at University College, Bristol, in the previous year, and in 1906 obtained a similar position at the university of Birmingham. Between 1911 and 1913 he wrote some important papers on radiation which were published in the Philosophical Magazine, and he presented some of the more fundamental parts of his work to the mathematical congress at Cambridge in 1912. J. W. Nicholson, professor of mathematics in the university of London, writing in 1918 said McLaren "undoubtedly anticipated Einstein and Abraham in their suggestion of a variable velocity of light, with the consequent expressions for the energy and momentum of the gravitational field". In 1913 he was made professor of mathematics at Reading, and took much interest in the development of the young university. In this year he shared the Adams prize of the university of Cambridge. In 1914 he visited Australia with other members of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, and met his parents again. War broke out while he was in Australia, and on his return to England he enlisted and was given a commission as lieutenant in the royal engineers. He did valuable work in charge of signalling and electrical communications, but on 26 July 1916 was shot while endeavouring to clear a pit of bombs threatened by an adjacent fire. He tried to continue this work, but was hit again, and died of his wounds in hospital on 13 August 1916. He was unmarried.
McLaren was a man of much force of character, modesty, and courage. His death and that of H. G. J. Moseley were spoken of as perhaps the two most irreparable losses to British science caused by the 1914-18 war. A volume of his Scientific Papers Mainly on Electrodynamics and Natural Radiation was published by the Cambridge University Press in 1925.
The Scotch Collegian, December 1916; J. W. Nicholson, Proceedings of the London Mathematical Society, 1918, reprinted with "a personal appreciation" by Hugh Walker in McLaren's Scientific Papers.
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MacLAURIN, SIR HENRY NORMAND (1835-1914),physician and public man,
son of James MacLaurin, M.A., a schoolmaster, was born at Kilconquhar, Fife, Scotland, on 19 December 1835. When 15 he won a bursary at the university of St Andrews and, after a brilliant course, took the degree of M.A. at 19 years of age. Going on to the university of Edinburgh, he qualified M.D. in 1857. In the following year he entered the royal navy as an assistant-surgeon, and remained in the service for 13 years. He came to Australia in 1871 and settled at Parramatta, but in the following year moved to Macquarie-street, Sydney. He had neither friends nor influence, but established a good practice, from which he did not retire until he was 70 years of age. He was appointed a fellow of the senate of the university of Sydney in 1883, in 1885 was elected president of the board of health, and in 1889 was nominated as a member of the legislative council of New South Wales. In April 1893 he became vice-president of the executive council in the Dibbs (q.v.) ministry, and in the financial crisis with which it was almost immediately faced suggested to the premier that all bank notes should be made legal tender. This suggestion was adopted and helped very much to allay the panic. The ministry was defeated in August 1894, but MacLaurin had established a reputation as a man of strong common sense and great financial capacity. He subsequently became a director of such important companies as the Bank of New South Wales, the Colonial Sugar Refining Company, the Commercial Union Insurance Company, and the Mutual Life and Citizens Company. He retained his position on the board of health and was also chairman of the immigration board of New South Wales. During the final years of the federation campaign, MacLaurin was a strong critic of the bill, was president of a citizens' committee at Sydney which took much exception to its financial provisions, and was one of the commission of three appointed by the New South Wales government to report on the financial clauses.
MacLaurin's greatest work was in connexion with the university. He was vice-chancellor in 1887-9, was elected again in 1895, and in 1896 became chancellor. Here he was in his element. His knowledge of finance made him an invaluable member of the finance committee, as a scholar he could meet the staff on equal terms and understand the nature of their problems, as a man of the world he could be the worthy representative of the university in any company. When he first became chancellor there were fewer than 500 students, but the number was almost quadrupled during his 18 years of office. He was knighted in 1902 and died at Sydney on 24 August 1914. He married in the beginning of 1872, Eliza, daughter of Charles Nathan, F.R.C.S., who died in 1908. He was survived by five sons.
MacLaurin was a man of fine character and much kindliness and charm. As a physician he was one of the early men to realize the importance of the psychological condition of the patient. He was a thoroughly capable business man, and at the university his tact and sympathy, wisdom and courage, made him a great administrator and leader. Of his sons, the eldest, Charles MacLaurin (1872-1925), educated at Sydney grammar school and the university of Edinburgh, became a well-known Sydney surgeon. He published in 1923, Post Mortem: Essays Historical and Medical, and in 1925 Mere Mortals: Medico-historical Essays. These books were republished in 1930 in one volume under the title De Mortuis: Essays Historical and Medical. They consist of interesting speculations about famous people and the effects of their health, or want of health, on their lives, and on history. Charles MacLaurin died at Sydney on 19 April 1925. His younger brother, Colonel Henry Normand MacLaurin (1878-1915), a most promising soldier, was killed at Gallipoli on 27 April 1915.
Medical Journal of Australia, 5 September 1914, 9 May 1925; Sydney Morning Herald, 25 August 1914; Sydney Daily Telegraph, 25 August 1914; Robert A. Dallen, Journal and Proceedings Royal Australian Historical Society, vol. XIX, pp. 233-6, H. A. H. MacLaurin, ibid, vol. XXI, pp. 209-26; Who's Who, 1914; Burke's Peerage, etc., 1914; Official History of Australia in the War, vol. I; Quick and Garran, The Annotated Constitution of the Australian Commonwealth, p. 209; B. R. Wise, The Making of the Australian Commonwealth, p. 276.
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McLEAN, ALLAN (1840-1911),politician,
was born in the Highlands of Scotland, on 3 February 1840. His father, Charles McLean, emigrated to Australia in 1842, took up land near Tarraville, Gippsland, Victoria, and engaged in cattle grazing. Allan McLean was educated by private tutors and at the state school, Tarraville. He assisted his father on his stations, and for a short period in his twenties was on the staff of the Gippsland Times. About 1870 he took The Lowlands, a sheep station about nine miles from Sale, and in 1872 formed the firm of A. McLean and Company, Stock and Station Agents, at Maffra. The business flourished and branches were afterwards established at Traralgon, Bairnsdale, Warragul, Mirboo and Melbourne. McLean became a shire councillor at Maffra in 1873, and afterwards as president of the council was active in forming the Municipal Association of Victoria. In 1880 he was elected as member for Gippsland North in the Victorian legislative assembly and held this seat until 1901. He first held office in 1890 when he was given the portfolios of president of the board of land and works and minister of agriculture in the James Munro (q.v.) ministry, and was chief secretary from April 1891 to February 1892 when the William Shiels (q.v.) ministry came in. In the new cabinet McLean was given his old positions of chief secretary and president of the board of land and works and held them until January 1893. He became a minister without portfolio in the George Turner (q.v.) cabinet in September 1894, but resigned in April 1898 and in December 1899 moved and carried a vote of no-confidence. McLean then came into power as premier and chief secretary in the new cabinet, which, however, lasted less than a year.
McLean was an opponent of federation and was not a member of the conventions which shaped the constitution. In March 1901, having resigned his state seat he was elected a member of the federal house of representatives for Gippsland, and sat as a supporter of Deakin (q.v.). In August 1904 Reid (q.v.) formed a government which had the support of Deakin and a section of his followers. McLean, a staunch protectionist, came into the cabinet as minister for trade and customs and equal in all things with Reid. It was an unhappy ministry, constantly being assailed by the Labour party and the extreme protectionist section of Deakin's followers who had formed a fourth party. The ministry lasted for less than 11 months, and McLean was much hurt when his old chief Deakin withdrew his support. At the election held in December 1906 McLean lost his seat by a small majority, his supporters thought his position to be so safe that they relaxed their efforts.
McLean, who had suffered for many years with a rheumatic affliction and did not feel capable of doing justice to his constituents, declined to allow himself to be nominated as a candidate at subsequent elections. He died at Melbourne on 13 July 1911. He was twice married (1) in 1866 to Miss Shinnock of Maffra and (2) to Mrs McArthur (née Linton), who survived him with five sons and two daughters by the first marriage.
McLean, an early pioneer, who had lived in Gippsland before there was even a road to Melbourne, understood the difficulties of the man on the land. As a member of parliament the needs of his constituents became almost a personal matter, and his honesty, unfailing courtesy and sympathy, inspired not only the respect but the affection of those who came in contact with him. Sir George Reid said of him that "no public man in Victoria was more widely or more affectionately esteemed" (My Reminiscences, p. 238). He was a capable debater and could bring a touch of fervour into his oratory which made it very effective. As premier of Victoria he showed himself to be a good leader who could keep a tight hand on the finances.
The Argus and The Age, Melbourne, 14 July 1911; The Cyclopaedia of Victoria, 1903; H. G. Turner, The First Decade of the Australian Commonwealth; W. Murdoch, Alfred Deakin: A Sketch.
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MACLEAY, ALEXANDER (1767-1848),scientist and official, the "father of Zoology" in Australia,
was born in the county of Ross, Scotland, on 24 June 1767. He was the eldest son of William Macleay, provost of the town of Wick. Nothing is known of his early years but he received a good education, and on 17 March 1795 was elected a fellow of the Linnean Society, London. In the same year he was appointed chief clerk in the prisoners of war office, in 1797 head of the department of correspondence of the transport board, and in 1806 secretary of the board. He remained in this position until 1818 when he retired on a pension of £750 a year. He had taken a special interest in the Linnean Society having become secretary in 1798, and continued to hold this position until in 1825 he was appointed colonial secretary of New South Wales, at a salary of £2000 a year. He arrived in Sydney in January 1826 and was immediately appointed a member of the executive council. He was an extremely valuable and hard-working official whose services were much valued by Governor Darling (q.v.). He did not succeed in working so well with Governor Bourke (q.v.), and several protests were made by residents of Sydney against his pension of £750 a year being a charge on the colony in addition to his salary. Macleay having mentioned that he had some thought of retiring, Bourke, in August 1835, suggested to the Earl of Aberdeen that this was desirable and that an admirable successor was available in Deas Thomson (q.v.), who was accordingly given the position in spite of Macleay's protestation that he had had no intention of retiring. Deas Thomson took over the office on 2 January 1837. Macleay published the correspondence with Bourke and other papers relating to his retirement as a pamphlet in 1838. Though he was nearly 70 years of age he felt his enforced retirement keenly. He had, however, in addition to his salary received grants of valuable land, one of which, some 56 acres of land in Elizabeth Bay, established the fortunes of his family. On his retirement his pension was raised to £1000 a year. He was elected a member of the legislative council in 1843, and though now 76 years of age was elected speaker and admirably carried out his duties until 19 May 1846, when he resigned the office.
Macleay was so busy after he arrived in Sydney that it must have been extremely difficult to keep up his interest in science. Before he came to Australia he had accumulated a remarkable collection of entomological specimens, largely British and European. In Australia he extended his interest to ornithology, and presented a large number of skins of Australian birds to the Linnean Society of London. He took much interest in the Australian museum during its early years, and is sometimes spoken of as its founder (Sydney Morning Herald, 26 July 1848), although it is now impossible to establish this. His garden at Elizabeth Bay became famous for its valuable and rare specimens of plants. He frequently welcomed visiting scientists at his house, and his success as a gardener on a comparatively sterile soil is said to have given marked stimulus to ornamental gardening in Sydney. The family records relating to the garden show that it was a great interest to Macleay in his declining years. He died following. a carriage accident on 19 July 1848. He married in London Eliza Barclay by whom he had 17 children. His wife died in 1847. of his surviving children two [George Macleay and William Sharp Macleay] are noticed separately. He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society, London, in 1809. His collections, much enlarged by his son and nephew, eventually became the property of the university of Sydney.
Macleay was much liked and respected throughout his active and busy life. He was an excellent official, a first-rate entomologist and a good botanist. Though he published nothing himself he had an important influence on the early study of biology in Australia.
J. J. Fletcher, The Macleay Memorial Volume, p. VII; J. J. Fletcher, Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, vol. XLV, p. 569; Historical Records of Australia, ser. I, vols. XII, XIII, XIV, XVI to XIX; R. Therry, Reminiscences, 2nd edition, pp. 55-6.
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MACLEAY, SIR GEORGE (1809-1891),explorer and politician,
[ also refer to George MACLEAY page at Project Gutenberg Australia]
was the third son of Alexander Macleay (q.v.). He was born at London in 1809, educated at Westminster School, and came to Australia with his father in January 1826 or not long after him. In November 1829 he went with Charles Sturt (q.v.) on his second expedition, "as a companion rather than as an assistant", and shared in the difficulties and dangers of the journey to the mouth of the Murray and back. Early in April 1830, when the whole party was practically exhausted, Sturt recorded that "amidst these distresses Macleay preserved his good humour and did his utmost to lighten the toil and to cheer the men". Their provisions had just about come to an end when they were fortunately able to kill some swans. They subsisted on these until two of the party, who had been sent on ahead, returned with supplies from a depot they had established on their outward journey. After a short rest Macleay was sent on with dispatches, but Sturt thought it wise to keep the rest of the party on the plain for a fortnight to allow them to recover from their exertions. Macleay had proved himself to be a hardy and excellent explorer, and he and Sturt formed a close friendship only broken by Sturt's death. After his return Macleay was on the land at Brownlow Hill near Camden about 40 miles from Sydney, and made his home there for nearly 30 years. He appears also at one time to have had a station on the Murrumbidgee. His chief interests were farming and horticulture and, though not a working zoologist, he had an interest in the subject. In 1836 he was appointed to the committee of the Australian Museum and botanical garden, and later on he was made a trustee of the museum. In 1854 he became a member of the old legislative council, and at the first election of the legislative assembly in 1856 he was elected as member for the Murrumbidgee. In 1859 he removed to England, was elected a fellow of the Linnean Society in 1860, and a member of the council in 1864. He died at Mentone in the south of France on 24 June 1891. He married (1) in 1842 Barbara St Clair Innes, who died in 1869, and (2) in 1890 Augusta Annie Sams, who survived him. There were no children of either marriage. He was created C.M.G. in 1869 and K.C.M.G. in 1875.
J. J. Fletcher, Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, vol. XLV, p. 630; Mrs N. G. Sturt, Life of Charles Sturt; P. Mennell, The Dictionary of Australasian Biography; Burke's Peerage, etc., 1891.
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MACLEAY, SIR WILLIAM JOHN (1820-1891),politician and scientist,
in later life the second name was not used, was born at Wick, Scotland, on 13 June 1820. He was the second son of Kenneth Macleay and a nephew of Alexander Macleay (q.v.). Educated at the Edinburgh academy he began to study medicine at the university, but when he was 18 years old his widowed mother died, and he decided to go to Australia with his cousin, W. S. Macleay (q.v.). They arrived at Sydney in March 1839. William Macleay took up land at first near Goulburn, and afterwards on the Murrumbidgee River. Like other landowners of the period he went through many hardships and anxieties, but by 1855 he was well established and in a good financial position. In that year he was elected to the old legislative council as member for the Lachlan and Lower Darling, and in April 1856 was elected to the legislative assembly for the same constituency. He was a member of the assembly for nearly 20 years, generally took an independent attitude, was a constant advocate for the extension of the railways, and sat on several special committees. In December 1864, when returning to Sydney after an election, he showed courage in resisting a notorious band of bushrangers. Some 10 years later Macleay was one of seven men to whom the government awarded gold medals "for gallant and faithful services" during the bushranging period. He had been living in Sydney since 1857, the year of his marriage to Susan Emmeline Deas-Thomson, and was now able to develop his interest in science. He had made a small collection of insects, and in 1861 began to extend it considerably. In April 1862 a meeting was held at his house and it was decided to found a local Entomological Society. Macleay was elected president and held the position for two years. The society lasted 11 years and, not only was Macleay the author of the largest number of papers, he also bore most of the expense. He had succeeded to the Macleay collection on the death of W. S. Macleay in 1865, and in 1874 decided to extend it from an entomological collection into a zoological collection. In this year the Linnean Society of New South Wales was founded, of which he was elected the first president, and in May 1875, having fitted up the barque Chevert, he sailed for New Guinea, where he obtained what he described as "a vast and valuable collection" of zoological specimens.
After his return from New Guinea Macleay spent much time in fostering the Linnean Society. He presented many books and materials for scientific work to it, which were all destroyed when the garden palace was burnt down in September 1882. In spite of this blow the society continued on its way and gradually built up another library. In 1885 Macleay erected a building for the use of the society in Ithaca-road, Elizabeth Bay, and endowed it with the sum of £14,000. He had contributed several papers to the Proceedings of the society, and in 1881 his Descriptive Catalogue of Australian Fishes was published in two volumes. Three years later a Supplement to this catalogue appeared, and in the same year his Census of Australian Snakes was reprinted from the Proceedings. He had hoped to make a descriptive catalogue of the Dipterous insects of Australia, but his health began to fail and he did not get far with it. He realized that much could be done to prevent diseases like typhoid fever and strongly urged the appointment of a government bacteriologist. Receiving little support he eventually left £12,000 to the university of Sydney for the foundation of a chair or lectureship in bacteriology. In 1890 the government having provided a building in the university grounds he handed the valuable Macleay collection to the university, together with an endowment of £6000 to provide for the salary of a curator. Macleay died on 7 December 1891; his wife survived him but there were no children. He was knighted in 1889. By his will he left £6000 to the Linnean Society for general purposes and £35,000 to provide four Linnean Macleay fellowships of £400 per annum each, to encourage and advance research in natural science. In leaving £12,000 to the university for bacteriology Macleay was in advance of his time, as the university was not prepared to carry out the conditions relating to the teaching of bacteriology in the medical course, and returned the money to the executors. Nearly 40 years later a professorship in bacteriology was established from the Bosch (q.v.) fund. The money returned was handed to the Linnean Society which employed a bacteriologist with the income.
Macleay in his unostentatious way did much for the colony. He did not come into prominence as a politician though he did conscientious work. In addition to nearly 20 years in the lower house he was from 1877 a nominated member of the upper house for about 10 years, and was more than once usefully employed as a chairman of royal commissions. As a scientist he would have made no claim to valuable original work though he did much that was useful. References to his papers contributed to the entomological and Linnean Societies of New South Wales will be found on page 709 of the 1891 volume of the Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales. Over a long period he steadily helped and encouraged the pursuit of science, and his benefactions have been of great use in enabling the work to continue to be carried on without financial anxiety.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 8 December 1891; J. J. Fletcher, The Macleay Memorial Volume; Calendars of the University of Sydney.
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MACLEAY, WILLIAM SHARP (1792-1865),naturalist,
eldest son of Alexander Macleay (q.v.), was born in London on 21 July 1792. He was educated at Westminster School and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he graduated with honours in 1814. He was appointed attaché to the British embassy at Paris, and secretary to the board for liquidating British claims on the French government, and following his father in taking an interest in natural history became friendly with Cuvier, and other celebrated men of science. In 1819 he published at London Horae Entomologicae; or Essays on the Annulose Animals, Parts 1 and 2. He returned to England in 1825 and published Annulosa Javanica; or an Attempt to illustrate the Natural Affinities and Analogies of the Insects collected in Java by T. Horsfield No. 1 (all published). In 1825 he was made H.B.M. Commissioner of Arbitration to the British and Spanish court of commission for the abolition of the slave trade, at Havana, and later judge to the mixed tribunal of justice. He remained there for 10 years and retired on a pension of £900 a year. He had established a reputation as a scientist and in 1837 was elected to the council of the Linnean Society and to the council of the Zoological Society. He was president of section D at the meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science held at Liverpool in September of the same year. In 1838 in a paper on the "Annulosa of South Africa", he mentioned his intention of going to Australia "for the next three or four years". He arrived in Sydney in March 1839 and it became his home for the remainder of his life. For a time he was interested in marine fauna on which he did some work, and he made large additions to his natural history collections. He took a great interest in the Australian Museum and was first a committee-man and then a trustee from 1841 to 1862. This kept him in touch with everyone in Sydney really interested in science, and visiting scientists made a point of meeting him. He was particularly friendly with Robert Lowe, afterwards Lord Sherbrooke (q.v.), and Mrs Lowe in a letter quoted in Martin's (q.v.) life of her husband speaks with enthusiasm of the beauty of Macleay's house and garden at Elizabeth Bay, Sydney. He fell into ill-health about 1862, and died on 26 January 1865. He was unmarried.
Macleay was studious and somewhat retiring in his habits. He was an excellent classical scholar, had a wide knowledge of history and biography, and his powers as a scientist struck everyone he met. The mass of his work is not great, his two volumes have been mentioned and in addition he wrote a comparatively small number of papers for scientific journals. His health was affected by his residence at Havana, and it is probable that after he came to Australia he found it difficult to make sustained efforts. His position as a scientist was, however, early recognized, Huxley in 1848 spoke of him as "the celebrated propounder of the Quinary system". The reference is to theories brought forward in his first book. In another place Huxley refers to him as "a great man in the naturalist world". His obituary notice in the Proceedings of the Linnean Society, London, 1864-5, stated that his Horae Entomologicae "contained some of the most important speculations as to the affinities or relations of various groups of animals to each other ever offered to the world, and of which it is almost impossible to overrate the suggestive value".
The Sydney Morning Herald, 30 January 1865; J. J. Fletcher, The Macleay Memorial Volume, p. IX; J. J. Fletcher, Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, vol. XLV, p. 591; A. P. Martin, Life and Letters of Viscount Sherbrooke.
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MACLEOD, WILLIAM (1850-1929),artist, and partner in the Bulletin,
was born in London on 27 October 1850. His father was of Highland stock, his mother was partly Cornish and partly German. Brought out to Australia in his fifth year his father died about a year later. His mother went to Sydney where she married James Anderson a portrait painter of the period. Unhappily Anderson became a drunkard and the boy had a miserable childhood. At 12 years of age he obtained a position with a photographer, and he began studying at a school of arts where he won prizes. Five years later he was earning enough to be able to make a home for his mother. He did much work as a painter and as a designer in stained glass, and for a time was a drawing master at schools. When still in his early twenties he began contributing drawings to the Sydney Mail, the Illustrated Sydney News, the Town and Country Journal, etc. He also obtained a reputation as a portrait painter whose work was hung at exhibitions of the Art Societies in both Sydney and Melbourne. For many years he was hardworking and successful. When the Bulletin was started in 1880 he had a drawing in the first number, and for the next two years was a regular contributor. He then became one of the artists for the Picturesque Atlas of Australasia and did a large number of illustrations for it, including most of the portraits. When he was approaching the end of this work J. F. Archibald (q.v.), who had been impressed by his business methods when a contributor to the Bulletin, asked him to join the staff. He became business manager in September 1887, soon acquired an interest in the paper, and for nearly 40 years was actively engaged in the management of it. He also read all the proofs with a watchful eye for possible libel actions. At one period he owned three-fourths of the paper, but recognizing the value of Archibald's work for it, he handed over to him one-fourth as a gift. He practically gave up working as an artist, but took a special interest in the cartoonists. His greatest discovery was David Low. Towards the end of his life he took up painting again, became interested in sculpture, and did a good deal of modelling. In 1926 he retired from the Bulletin and died on 24 June 1929. He married (1) Emily Collins in 1873 and (2) in 1911 Conor O'Brien, who survived him with one son and two daughters of the first marriage.
Macleod was a man of medium height, bearded, and kindly in expression. He was a first-rate business man, shrewd and just, with a genius for friendship. One of the employees in the printing office of the Bulletin said that if all employers were like him the legal machinery for the settlement of industrial disputes would go out of use. His illustrations in the Picturesque Atlas of Australasia are excellent. Stained glass windows from his designs will be found in St Benedict's, Sydney, St John the Baptist at Queanbeyan, the Church of England at Duntroon and the chapel at Long Bay penitentiary. Many of his original drawings for the Picturesque Atlas are at the Mitchell library, Sydney.
Mrs Macleod, Macleod of the Bulletin; The Lone Hand, 1907 and 1908; The Bulletin, 26 June 1929.
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McMAHON, GREGAN (1874-1941),actor and theatrical producer,
the eldest son of John Turner McMahon and his wife, Elizabeth Gregan, was born at Sydney on 2 March 1874. His father was in the civil service, and both parents were Irish. Educated at Sydney Grammar School and St Ignatius College, Riverview, Sydney, McMahon played in the Riverview football team, and took first-class honours in classics at his matriculation examination. Going on to the university, Sydney, he graduated B.A. in 1896 and during his course established a reputation as an amateur actor. A critic on one occasion spoke of his performance being so artistic that he seemed like a professional in a company of amateurs. At the conclusion of his university course McMahon was articled to a firm of solicitors at Sydney, and remained with them for some years, but in May 1900 was invited by Robert Brough to join his comedy company. His first professional appearance was as the waiter in The Liars at Brisbane in the beginning of June, and during the next 12 months he toured in the east playing a variety of small parts. Returning to Australia he played with the W. F. Hawtrey and Brough companies, and by 1902 was receiving important parts, his Horace Parker, in A Message from Mars, was highly praised in this year. Seasons followed in New Zealand and Australia, largely in companies under the J. C. Williamson (q.v.) management. Early in 1911 McMahon, who had been playing in Melbourne, organized a repertory theatre movement. The first performances took place in June, the plays selected being St John Hankin's The Two Mr Wetherbys, the second act of Sheridan's The Critic, and Ibsen's John Gabriel Borkman. It was soon realized that McMahon was a producer with a wide knowledge of his craft, able to get the best out of his cast. Though mostly amateurs, under his direction they were quick in learning the finer points, and in most cases gave performances of great distinction. Among the plays produced during the next six years were Candida, Getting Married, Major Barbara, The Doctor's Dilemma, Man and Superman, Fanny's First Play, You Never Can Tell and Pygmalion by Shaw; Rosmersholm and An Enemy of the People by Isben; The Voysey Inheritance and The Madras House by Granville Barker; The Pigeon, Strife and The Fugitive by Galsworthy; The Seagull by Tchekhov; The Mate by Schnitzler, many other plays by leading dramatists of the period, and several by Australian authors. The 1914-18 war, however, made difficulties, several leading actors enlisted, and by 1918 the public was giving distinctly less support to the movement which had to be abandoned for a period.
McMahon then returned to the professional stage and acted as producer for Williamson and other managers. In 1920 he arranged with the Messrs Tait to start a repertory movement in Sydney. This was carried on for several years, the productions including The Dover Road by Milne; Abraham Lincoln by Drinkwater; Ibsen's John Gabriel Borkman; Franz MoInar's Liliom; Galsworthy's Foundations, Loyalties, and Windows; and many others. Back in Melbourne again in 1929 McMahon revived the repertory movement under the name of the "Gregan McMahon Players" and in 11 years placed about 90 plays on the stage, including several of the later Shaw plays; Pirandello's Right You Are and Six Characters in Search of an Author; several plays by James Bridie; and others by Galsworthy, Drinkwater, Somerset Maugham, Chesterton, Eugene O'Neill, Sean O'Casey, Daviot and Casella, in the presentation of which a generally high standard was reached. In spite of difficulties caused by war breaking out again, McMahon was still keeping up his standard of production when he died suddenly on 30 August 1941. He married in 1899 Mary Hungerford who survived him with a son and a daughter. He was created C.B.E. in 1938.
A man of kindly and generous nature with artistic sensibilities, McMahon deliberately chose the type of work that could not bring great financial success. As a producer and actor he possibly had one fault. If he felt that a part was not going over, he was inclined to try to put more into it than the part would hold, but from the beginning of his career he had always striven to get the best out of every part however small it might be. Starting with Brough he inherited the Brough and Boucicault (q.v.) tradition of attention to detail and complete harmony in presentation. Whether McMahon should be called a great actor may be a matter of some doubt. He was certainly a most intelligent and finished actor with a wide range of parts. His Mr Burgess in Candida was a delightful study of a comparatively small part, and having seen that his excellent rendering of Sylvanus Heythorp in Old England was quite to be expected. But such diverse parts as John Tanner in Man and Superman; Louis Ferrand in The Pigeon; the father in Six Characters in Search of an Author; Shaw's Charles II, and King Magnus in The Apple Cart; Lob in Dear Brutus, Ulric Brendel in Rosmersholm and a host of other characters, revealed an actor who was much more than merely competent, because essentially he was an artist who loved and respected his craft.
The Herald, Melbourne, 30 August 1941; Souvenir Repertory Theatre Ball, 1914; S. Elliott Napier, The Sydney Repertory Theatre Society; information from family; personal knowledge.
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McMILLAN, ANGUS (1810-1865),explorer,
[ also refer to Angus McMILLAN page at Project Gutenberg Australia]
was born at Glenbrittle, Skye, off the west coast of Scotland, in 1810. He was the fourth son of Ewan McMillan, a farmer. Little is known of his early life, but he was a man of some education, with strong religious feelings. His diary, which in 1925 was in private keeping at Sale, Victoria, shows that he left Scotland on 13 September 1837 as a cabin passenger in the Minerva, and arrived at Sydney on 23 January 1838. He had letters of introduction to Captain Lachlan Macalister who gave him a position on his station in the Goulburn district. The years 1838-9 were drought years, and McMillan was instructed to try and find new pastures in Victoria. Taking an aborigine, Jimmie Gibber, with him McMillan rode south on 28 May 1839. Five days later he had crossed the Snowy River and was in eastern Victoria. But his companion was afraid to venture farther into the territory of the Warrigal blacks, and McMillan thought it wise to go west by north to an outstation near the site of Omeo. He returned and reported progress to Macalister, who encouraged him to make another attempt. A few months later McMillan formed a cattle station on the Tambo near Ensay. Using this as a base McMillan, with a party of five others of whom two were aborigines, made his way down the Tambo, and after a most difficult journey reached the lowlands near the coast. There he found his way blocked by the Macalister River and returned to Ensay. He began to make a road for stock, but a few weeks later was instructed not to form any more stations until a way was found to Corner Inlet. In July 1840 with Lieutenant Ross, R.N., and some of his former party, he made another effort, but found the rivers in flood and was unable to proceed any farther than before. Another attempt brought McMillan to a hill known as Tom's Cap where dense scrub blocked the way. On 9 February 1841, with T. Macalister, four stockmen and an aborigine, McMillan tried again, forced a way through the scrub, and on 14 February stood on the beach at Port Albert a little to the east of Corner Inlet.
During the next few years McMillan built up an export trade of cattle from Corner Inlet to Tasmania. He established himself at Bushy Park near Stratford, where he was well known for his hospitality and public spirit. In 1856 he was given a public dinner at Port Albert, and a portrait in oils was subscribed for, which is now in the council chamber at Yarram. In 1864 he was requested by the Victorian government to open up the rugged country to a new goldfield. A start was made 74 miles from Stratford and McMillan marked a track through to Omeo where 700 men were at work on the diggings. His health, however, had become impaired, and he died on his way home to Bushy Park on 18 May 1865. He was survived by two sons.
McMillan was a natural leader whose tact, good sense and kindliness enabled him to get on well with his men, including the aborigines, and he has long been recognized as one of the great pioneers of Victoria. His hospitality no doubt prevented him from becoming a rich man, but he valued very much the esteem in which he was so generally held. He took particular pride in his election as president of the Caledonian Society of Victoria.
A. W. Greig, The Victorian Historical Magazine, May 1912; Chas Daley, The Victorian Historical Magazine, March 1927; John King, Our Trip to Gippsland Lakes.
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McMILLAN, SIR ROBERT FURSE (1858-1931),chief-justice of Western Australia,
eldest son of John McMillan, barrister-at-law was born at London on 24 January 1858. He was educated at Westminster School, where he was a Queen's scholar, and Trinity Hall, Cambridge. He graduated in 1880 and became a member of the Inner Temple, where he held a common law scholarship and the Inns of Court studentship. He was called to the bar in 1881 and practised with success. On 1 December 1902 he was appointed a judge of the supreme court of Western Australia, was acting chief-justice in 1913, and chief-justice from 1 January 1914. He was appointed lieutenant-governor on 7 June 1921 and administered the government in 1922, 1924 and 1929. He died suddenly on 23 April 1931. He was knighted in 1916 and created K.C.M.G. in 1925. He married in 1887 Miss M. A. Elder who survived him with two sons and two daughters.
McMillan, an able and wise man, was an excellent public speaker. It has been said of him that he could not be dull. As a judge he was thoroughly capable and hard-working, and had the esteem both of his colleagues and the legal profession generally.
Who's Who, 1931; The West Australian, 24 April 1931.
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McNESS, SIR CHARLES (1853-1938),philanthropist,
was born at Huntingdon, England, in 1853. He came to Australia when about 30 years of age, and started in business in Perth as an ironmonger. He later became an estate agent and invested largely in city properties which became very valuable. He retired in 1915 and henceforth spent much of his time in travelling, and the disposal of his fortune in charity by giving large subscriptions to patriotic funds, hospitals, religious bodies, the State war memorial, and Anzac House. In 1930 he founded the McNess fund for the relief of unemployment, and in 1932 gave £20,000 for this purpose. In 1937 he gave about £12,000 for the construction of a road in memory of his wife who died in February of that year. He also built the McNess Hall for the Presbyterian church at Perth. He died at Perth on 21 June 1938 and was survived by a son. He was knighted in 1931. He was of a somewhat retiring disposition and took no part in public life, though much interested in the problem of the housing of the poor. It has been estimated that his benefactions may have exceeded £150,000.
The West Australian, 23 and 24 June 1938.
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MACONOCHIE, ALEXANDER (1787-1860),prison reformer,
was born in 1787. He entered the royal navy in 1803 and attained the rank of commander in 1815. He arrived in Tasmania on 6 January 1837 as private secretary to Sir John Franklin (q.v.). In October of that year he sent a report on convict discipline to England which was laid before parliament in April 1838, and in the same year published a volume at Hobart, Thoughts on Convict Management and other Subjects connected with the Australian Penal Colonies. He added a short Supplement in 1839, and the sheets were sent to England and published with a new title-page with the word Australiana prefixed to the title. In this volume he enunciated his views that all criminals should be punished for the past, and trained for the future in government employ. He so impressed the colonial office that in May 1839 it suggested that he should be offered the position of superintendent of Norfolk Island. Maconochie was willing to accept the position, but pointed out that he did not consider Norfolk Island suitable for a trial of his methods. Governor Gipps (q.v.) could, however, offer him nothing better. On 6 March 1840 Maconochie began his duties, and almost at once came in conflict with the governor, concerning the extent of his powers. There was much correspondence between Gipps and Maconochie and the colonial office, but in April 1843 Lord Stanley informed Gipps that Maconochie was to be relieved of his position, and that Captain Childs was on his way out to take his place. Maconochie returned to England and in 1846 published a pamphlet of 74 pages, Crime and Punishment. The Mark System. This gave an account of the system he had endeavoured to develop on Norfolk Island. He was appointed governor of Birmingham jail in October 1849, and held the position for two years. He published other pamphlets on his system and on emigration, and died at Morden, Surrey, England, on 25 October 1860. He married and left a widow and family.
Maconochie was a thoroughly earnest and sincere man in advance of his time. He believed that prisoners should be treated with humanity, that their education should be extended, and that many of them could be persuaded to live honest lives if given a fair opportunity. He would probably have been more successful at Norfolk Island if he could have been content to bring in his innovations gradually.
F. Boase, Modern English Biography; Historical Records of Australia, ser. I, vols. XIX to XXIII.
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MACPHERSON, JOHN ALEXANDER (1833-1894),premier of Victoria,
was born in 1833 or early in 1834 as he died aged 60 on 17 February 1894 (death notice, The Argus, 23 February 1894). He came of a squatting family and having studied law was admitted to the Victorian bar, but did not practise. He was elected a member of the legislative assembly for Portland in 1864, and in the following year for Dundas. He held this seat for 12 years. When the second McCulloch (q.v.) ministry was defeated in September 1869, Macpherson formed a ministry which was in office until 9 April 1870. The third McCulloch ministry then came in and Macpherson was included in it as president of the board of lands and works. This ministry was defeated in June 1871 and Macpherson was not in office again until McCulloch formed his fourth ministry in October 1875 when he was chief secretary. He was elected unopposed at the election held in May 1877 when the McCulloch party had a crushing defeat, but shortly afterwards retired from politics. He died in England on 17 February 1894.
P. Mennell, The Dictionary of Australasian Biography; H. G. Turner, A History of the Colony of Victoria.
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McPHERSON, SIR WILLIAM MURRAY (1865-1932),premier of Victoria and public benefactor,
was born at Melbourne on 19 September 1865, the son of Thomas McPherson, iron and machinery merchant. On leaving school he entered his father's business and gained a leading position in Melbourne commercial circles. He became president of the Melbourne chamber of commerce, and was a Melbourne harbour trust commissioner from 1902 to 1913. He was also a member of the Hawthorn city council and in 1913 was elected to the legislative assembly for that electorate. He was treasurer in the Bowser (q.v.) ministry from November 1917 to March 1918, and held the same position in the succeeding Lawson ministry until February 1924. He became leader of the Nationalist party in 1927, and premier and treasurer on the defeat of the Hogan government in November 1928. The effect of the world depression on Australia, which began soon afterwards, caused McPherson much anxiety and the strain affected his health. Legislation passed by his ministry included acts liberalizing the conditions for the purchase of land by settlers and extending the benefits under the workers' compensation act; but it was difficult to do much in the financial conditions of the period. McPherson was defeated at the general election at the end of 1929, took a holiday in 1930, but never fully regained his health. He died suddenly on 26 July 1932. He married in 1892 Emily Jackson and was survived by a son and two daughters. Lady McPherson died in 1929. He was created K.B.E. in 1923.
McPherson was a highly successful man of business who became a sound, cautious, and far-sighted state treasurer. He was a man of great integrity and strength of character, much liked on both sides of the house. His countless acts of private benevolence were known only to his wife and himself, but two large gifts give him a place among Australian philanthropists. In 1924 he gave £25,000 towards the building of the Emily McPherson school of domestic economy at Melbourne, which was so named as a tribute to his wife, and in 1929 he gave a further £25,000 to the Queen Victoria hospital for women and children, as a memorial to his mother, Jessie McPherson.
The Argus and The Age, Melbourne, 27 July 1932; Burke's Peerage, etc., 1931; Year Books of the Commonwealth of Australia, 1923-30.
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MACQUARIE, LACHLAN (1761-1824),governor of New South Wales,
was born at Ulva, one of the Hebrides Islands, on 31 January 1761. He was a cousin of the Lauchlan Macquarie who was visited by Dr Johnson in October 1773. At an early age the boy was sent to Edinburgh to be educated at the high school. On 9 April 1777 he entered the army as an ensign in the 84th regiment of foot, and he became a lieutenant in the 71st regiment in January 1781 after serving in Halifax and other parts of Nova Scotia. At the close of the war with the United States his regiment was sent to Jamaica. In June 1784 Macquarie was placed on half-pay and returned to Scotland. The opportunity for active service came again in November 1787, when he joined the 77th regiment and went to India. Stationed at first at Bombay Macquarie was soon made a captain and subsequently fought in the campaign against Tippoo Sahib. After peace had been declared the regiment returned to Bombay, and Macquarie was given a staff appointment under Sir Robert Abercromby as major of brigade in August 1793. Two years later he was with the expedition for the recovery of the Dutch settlement at Cochin, which had been taken by the French, and about the beginning of 1796 he was present at the taking of Colombo and Point de Galle. He had married in September 1793 Jane Jarvis, and early in 1796 her health became so bad that he took her for a sea voyage to China in the hope of benefiting her. She, however, died in China in July 1796 to his great grief. In May 1796 he had become major of the 86th regiment. In the next few years he fought again against Tippoo Sahib and held various important positions. In 180l he was with the force sent to Egypt, and on 7 November he became deputy adjutant-general on the staff of the Earl of Cavan. On returning to India in July 1802 he assumed command of his regiment and became military secretary on the staff of the governor. In January 1803 he sailed for England carrying dispatches from Governor Duncan at Bombay in which he was commended for his services. He arrived in May and in July was offered an appointment as one of three officers on a military mission to Portugal. He declined on account of his want of knowledge of Portuguese and was given a staff appointment in London. On 17 November 1803 a commission as lieutenant-colonel was granted to him, and in April 1805 he returned to India to take command of the 86th regiment and was again appointed military secretary. Towards the end of the year he fought against Holkar. In 1807 he returned to England and was married to his second wife, Elizabeth Henrietta Campbell. In the following year, when the news of the deposition of Governor Bligh (q.v.) reached England, it was decided that a new governor should be appointed and the position was offered to Brigadier-general Nightingall. It was also decided to send the 73rd regiment with Macquarie in command to relieve the New South Wales Corps. Nightingall, however, falling ill was unable to go, and on 8 May 1809 Macquarie was appointed captain-general and governor-in-chief of New South Wales.
Macquarie sailed on 22 May and made his official landing at Sydney on 31 December 1809. He had orders to reinstate Bligh for one day but this could not be done as Bligh was at Hobart. He was in some doubt as to how he would be received, but he had brought the 73rd regiment with him and there was no trouble. The officers of the New South Wales Corps soon realized that their reign was at an end, though for about 18 years they had dominated and lived on the country, in spite of the efforts of three successive governors to control their traffic in spirits and land. Macquarie immediately got to work and dismissed all the persons who had been appointed to offices since the deposition of Bligh, and replaced those who had formerly held them. He found the country "threatened with famine; distracted by faction; the public buildings in a state of dilapidation; the few roads and bridges almost impassable; the population in general depressed by poverty; . . . the morals of the great mass of the population in the lowest state of debasement, and religious worship almost entirely neglected". One of his first acts was to reduce the number of licensed public houses in Sydney from 75 to 20, though very soon after their number was much increased, and he early began the vigorous building policy that was a feature of his administration. The streets were straightened and improved, new barracks were built for his regiment, and the New South Wales Corps was sent back to England. In November he began a tour of the colony and in little more than a month was able to form some opinion of its capabilities. Unfortunately most of the good land near Sydney was subject to flooding and no way through the mountains had yet been found. Macquarie set his face against attempted monopolies in the necessaries of life, and succeeded in preventing the inflation of prices by importing grain from India in times of scarcity. His one early mistake was to give him much trouble. He was anxious that emancipated convicts should have every opportunity to rehabilitate themselves, and he invited some of them to his table and even appointed them as magistrates. If he had been prudent enough to have begun with such a man as the Rev. Henry Fulton (q.v.), who was merely a political offender, he might gradually have persuaded the officers and free settlers to accept others. But men of the type of Michael Massey Robinson (q.v.) were not really worthy of the notice given them, and Macquarie's well-intentioned efforts were, practically speaking, unsuccessful and only a cause of worry to him. Macquarie realized the necessity of providing education, and free schools for boys were opened at Sydney and Parramatta within a few months of his arrival. The first post-office was opened on 23 June, a large market place was proclaimed on 20 October 1810, and attempts were made to keep the stream that then ran through Sydney pure. In the same month Macquarie was able to report to the Earl of Liverpool that a turnpike road with a number of bridges was being constructed from Sydney to Hawkesbury, a distance of nearly 40 miles. He also pressed for the evacuation of Norfolk Island, stating that it could never "be of the least advantage or benefit to the British government or to this colony". In 1811 Macquarie successfully reorganized the police of Sydney and made new regulations for the management of the market. He suggested to the Earl of Liverpool that trial by jury should be established, and that various officials of the court should be sent out from England. He was then on very good terms with the judge-advocate Ellis Bent (q.v.) and recommended that he should be made a judge. The home government was already questioning the increase in the expenditure, and in November 1812 Macquarie stated that a great proportion of the expenses incurred in the first 18 months of his government had originated in causes which were not likely to occur again. In 1813 a way was found through the Blue Mountains by Gregory Blaxland (q.v.), W. C. Wentworth (q.v.) and W. Lawson (q.v.). It is possible that the importance of this feat was not fully realized at the time, for there appears to have been no public recognition of it. More probably there had been some quarrel with the Blaxlands, as in the previous November Macquarie had complained to Liverpool of the large amount of money that the 120 men supplied to them had cost. However, on 19 November 1813, Macquarie sent G. W. Evans (q.v.) to explore beyond the mountains. In January 1814 he was able to report to Bathurst that Evans had discovered "a beautiful and champaign country of very considerable extent and great fertility" which . . . "will at no distant period prove a source of infinite benefit to this colony". It was not until 10 June 1815 that it was announced in general orders:--"To G. BlaxIand and W. Wentworth, Esqs, and Lieutenant Lawson, of the royal veteran company, the merit is due of having with extraordinary patience and much fatigue, effected the first passage over the most rugged and difficult part of the Blue Mountains." This tardy recognition was not creditable to Macquarie, whatever cause he may have had for disliking the Blaxlands. He has also been criticized for his building of a hospital by giving the contractors a monopoly for three years of the traffic in spirits. A hospital, however, was badly needed and it was no easy problem to find the funds. In a few years the local revenue and port dues enabled Macquarie to enter on an immense programme of public works, which included hundreds of miles of roads and several military barracks and country hospitals, new barracks for the convicts in various centres, and churches in Sydney and country towns. In this work he had the assistance of Francis Howard Greenway (q.v.) and it was unfortunate that the latter was not able to go on with his proposed planning of Sydney. Macquarie, however, did succeed in endowing Sydney with the botanical gardens, the domain, Hyde park and the university grounds, though the last were of course not designed for that purpose.
In 1815 Macquarie came to cross purposes with both Ellis Bent the judge-advocate and Jeffery Hart Bent (q.v.), the judge. Macquarie undoubtedly was too inclined to stand upon his dignity, but on the other hand he was quite right in his contention that convicted men who had expiated their offences by serving a sentence should be entitled to the rights and privileges of free British subjects. Whether this should be extended to allowing a man "guilty of a crime of an infamous nature" who had consequently lost his professional standing to appear as attorney in the court was a question of some difficulty. Macquarie also quarrelled with the Rev. Samuel Marsden (q.v.) on a similar matter. He had appointed two ex-convicts, Andrew Thompson and Simeon Lord, as magistrates, and Marsden objected to being associated with them and resigned his magistracy. Macquarie then announced that he "had been pleased to dispense with the services of the Reverend Samuel Marsden (q.v.) as justice of the peace and magistrate" which was treating Marsden with something less than justice. The position was that derogatory accounts of Macquarie's actions as governor had been sent to the colonial office, and Macquarie with insufficient evidence, but possibly correctly, thought that Marsden was responsible. Macquarie in 1815 had court-martialled an assistant chaplain, Benjamin Vale. He complained to the colonial office and was severely rebuked and reminded that chaplains could be court-martialled only for offences involving their character. Macquarie in his reply of 1 December 1817 had suggested that he should resign--Earl Bathurst in his letter in reply of 18 October 1818 tactfully told Macquarie that though it was impossible for him to abstain from pointing out "those cases in which you have either transgressed the laws or adopted an erroneous line of conduct", there had never been any imputation upon his character or the uprightness of his intentions. He had therefore deferred submitting his resignation to the Prince Regent until Macquarie had had an opportunity of reconsidering it. This letter never reached Macquarie (See H. R. of A., ser. I, vol. X, p. 291), and meanwhile various complaints against him had found their way to Bathurst. It was decided to appoint John Thomas Bigge (q.v.), a barrister of experience, as a commissioner to proceed to New South Wales and report on the position. In a dispatch dated 30 January 1819 Macquarie was informed of this and copies of Bigge's instructions were sent to him. The scope of his inquiry embraced practically all the affairs of the colony, and Macquarie was directed to give him every assistance in his power. Unfortunately, though Bigge was an able and conscientious man, he had no understanding of Macquarie's main desire that convicts should be allowed to redeem themselves, and generally he was not over appreciative of the work done by Macquarie, who on 29 February 1820 resigned his office as governor of the colony. On 1 December 1821 he handed over to his successor Sir Thomas Brisbane (q.v.), and in February 1822 left for England. He died at London on 1 July 1824 and was buried on the island of Mull. He was survived by his wife and one son, who died unmarried.
Macquarie was a tall, vigorous man, nearly 14 stone in weight with a swarthy skin and penetrating grey eyes. He had been a first-rate officer and administrator in the army, and came to his new office with practically the powers of a dictator. If too much inclined to stand upon his dignity and too little inclined to compromise where his powers were concerned, his vigorous humane policy came just at the right time. There had been a slight improvement in the conditions under each of the preceding governors, and the time had come for a forward movement. It was unfortunate for Macquarie that he came into conflict with Marsden, Jeffery Bent, and Bigge, who could all on occasions be unsympathetic or difficult, but his answer to all criticism is the work he did, and the general improvement that followed in the situation of the colonists. During the 12 years Macquarie was in Australia the population increased from 11,590 to 38,778, cattle from 12,442 to 102,939, sheep from 25,888 to 290,158, hogs from 9,544 to 33,906 and port duties from £8000 to £28,000 a year. During his period a beginning was made in the manufacture of cloth and linen, hats, stockings, boots and shoes and common pottery. A bank had been established and the state of the currency much improved. Two hundred and seventy-six miles of roads had been constructed and many churches, barracks and other buildings had been completed. When Macquarie arrived in New South Wales the place was still little better than a prison camp. When he left it was a lusty infant colony with every sign of rapid growth before it. Macquarie's occasional touches of pomposity, vanity, and obstinacy now seem of little moment. He was untiring in the conscientious carrying out of his duties, and his innate kindliness and humanity showed the way of escape from the general brutality of the period. His reward was the affection of the emancipists for whom he had worked so hard, and even John Macarthur (q.v.), one not easily pleased, could say of him that he was a man of unblemished honour and character.
Historical Records of Australia, ser. I, vols. VII to X, ser. III, vols. I to III; A. Jose, Builders and Pioneers of Australia; Marion Phillips, A Colonial Autocracy; Frank Walker, Journal and Proceedings Royal Australian Historical Society, vol. I, pp. 28-33; F. M. Bladen, ibid, vol. II, pp. 171-2; J. P. McGuanne, ibid, Vol. IV, pp. 29-125; ibid, vol. V, pp. 74-103; Charles H. Bertie, ibid, vol. XVI, pp. 22-51; G. A. Wood, ibid, pp. 323-463; J. Dennis. ibid, vol. XXIII, pp. 412-72; M. H. Ellis, ibid, vol. XXVII, pp. 93-126; Frank Driscoll, ibid, pp. 373-433; M. H. Ellis, ibid, vol. XXVIII, pp. 375-475; John Thomas Bigge, Reports; Art in Australia, ser. I, No. 10, The Macquarie Book; The Gentleman's Magazine, 1824, vol. II, pp. 276-7.
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MACROSSAN, JOHN MURTAGH (1832-1891),politician,
was born in Donegal, Ireland, in 1832. He emigrated to Victoria in 1853 and worked for 12 years on the diggings in Victoria, New South Wales and New Zealand. In 1865 he went to northern Queensland, became well-known among the miners, and in 1873 was elected a member of the legislative assembly for the Kennedy district. Being a representative of the miners and a fervent democrat, surprise has been expressed at his subsequent association with McIlwraith (q.v.). He had, however, an instinctive distrust of Griffith (q.v.), and there was then no Labour party. When McIlwraith offered him a place in his cabinet in January 1879 he became secretary for public works and for mines. In 1879 and again in 1880 he endeavoured to bring in an act for the regulation of mines without success, but in 1881 he succeeded in passing his mines regulation act, which marked an important advance in industrial legislation. Macrossan held the same positions in McIlwraith's second ministry formed in June 1888. He took a strong stand on the appointment by the Imperial government of Sir Henry Blake as governor of Queensland, obtained McIlwraith's support, and as a result Sir Henry Norman was sent instead. In 1889 Macrossan brought in a new mines regulation act, which included provisions for a system of inspections by representatives of the miners. As a northern representative, he was a great advocate for the self-government of northern Queensland, and spoke most eloquently for this now almost forgotten cause. He had made a great speech when the question was brought up in 1886, and in October 1890 he brought forward a motion to bring about the separation of the north. Sir Samuel Griffith moved an amendment that it was desirable to have separate legislative authorities in southern, northern and central Queensland, which was carried. But the coming of the federal movement threw this question into the background. In January of this year Macrossan had become colonial secretary in the Morehead (q.v.) government, and in February, with Griffith, who was leader of the opposition, he attended the conference on federation held at Melbourne. There he made a great impression. B. R. Wise (q.v.) called him the "second figure in the federal movement next after Sir Henry Parkes"; Deakin (q.v.) once said of him "on the floor of the house he was almost Sir Henry's equal, while in committee he was the superior". (B. R. Wise, The Making of the Australian Commonwealth, p. 83). At the 1891 convention at Sydney he was one of the Queensland representatives. He was by now obviously a sick man, he had been advised by his physician not to attend, but thought it his duty to do so. Four weeks after the conference opened he died, on 30 March 1891. He left a widow and children, who in 1925 by a gift of £2000, founded the John Murtagh Macrossan memorial lectureship at the university of Queensland.
Macrossan was small of stature and of frail physique, a hard-working and able administrator, with a great grasp of detail. He was thoroughly sincere, a good speaker, and one of the best debaters of his time. Recognized as one of the great personalities of his own colony, his too early death prevented him from taking the high place in federal politics to which he would have been entitled.
Of his sons, Hugh Denis Macrossan (1881-1940), after a distinguished scholastic career, was called to the Queensland bar in 1907. He was M.L.A. for Windsor 1912-15, was appointed a judge of the supreme court of Queensland in 1926, and chief-justice in May 1940. He died after a short illness on 23 June 1940, having established a high reputation both as a lawyer and as a judge. He acted as host to the Papal delegates when the foundation stone of the Holy Name cathedral was laid, and was made a Knight of St Gregory. His younger brother, Neal Macrossan, was appointed a supreme court judge in June 1940.
The Queenslander, 4 April 1891; Foreword to W. A. Holman's John Murtagh Macrossan Lecture, 1928; P. Mennell, Dictionary of Australasian Biography; B. R. Wise, The Making of the Australian Commonwealth; The Courier-Mail, 24 and 26 June 1940; The Telegraph, Brisbane, 24 and 29 June 1940.
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