The Hon. Richard Edward O'CONNOR, Q.C (1851 - 1912)**

  • Date of Birth: 04/08/1851
  • Place of Birth: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Date of Death: 18/11/1912
  • Place of Death: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Parliamentary Service

Member of the NSW Legislative Council8 Feb 188816 Jul 189810yr(s) 5mth(s) 9day(s)
Life Appointment under the Constitution Act. Date of Writ of Summons 30 December 1887
Minister of Justice23 Oct 189114 Dec 18932yr(s) 1mth(s) 22day(s)
Solicitor General19 Jul 189313 Sep 18931mth(s) 26day(s)
Granted retention of "Honourable" for life.

Qualifications, occupations and interests

Lawyer (barrister). Educated at Lyndhurst College. Sydney Grammar, University of Sydney (BA 1871, MA 1873). Crown Prosecutor, resumed private practice in Sydney. Appointed as a Queens Council in 1896; Justice of High Court of Australia 1903 - 1912. First president of Commonwealth Court of Conciliation and Arbitration 1905 - 1908. Contributed to literary columns of newspapers. Twice declined offer of knighthood.

Honours Received

Wentworth Medal in 1870, University of Sydney.

Membership of other Parliaments & Offices Held

Member of the Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia. Senator 1901 - 1903.


Son of Richard O'Connor, Clerk of the Legislative Assembly of New South Wales 1856 - 1859 and Clerk of the Parliaments & Clerk of the Legislative Council 1860 - 1871, and Mary Harnett. Married Sarah Hensleigh in 1879 and had issue, 4 sons and 2 daughters. Roman Catholic. Requiem Mass in St Mary's Cathedral and burial at Roman Catholic section of Rookwood cemetery.

Additional Information

Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 11 Personal papers in the Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales: Richard Edward O'Connor - papers concerning Federation, 1893 - 1900 (DLMS F41)