Sir Edmund BARTON (1849 - 1920)**

  • Date of Birth: 18/01/1849
  • Place of Birth: Glebe, New South Wales, Australia
  • Date of Death: 07/01/1920
  • Place of Death: Medlow Bath, New South Wales, Australia

Parliamentary Service

PositionStartEndPeriodNotes
Member of the NSW Legislative Assembly26 Aug 187926 Jan 18877yr(s) 5mth(s) 1day(s)
Member of the NSW Legislative Council8 Mar 188712 Jun 18914yr(s) 3mth(s) 5day(s)
Life Appointment under the Constitution Act: Date of Writ of Summons 2 February 1887. Granted retention of title of "Honourable" for life.
Member of the NSW Legislative Assembly17 Jun 189125 Jun 18943yr(s) 9day(s)
Member of the NSW Legislative Council12 May 189718 Jul 18981yr(s) 2mth(s) 7day(s)
Life Appointment under the Constitution Act. Date of Writ of Summons 8 May 1897
Member of the NSW Legislative Assembly28 Sep 18987 Feb 19001yr(s) 4mth(s) 11day(s)
Member for University of Sydney26 Aug 18799 Nov 18801yr(s) 2mth(s) 15day(s)
9th (1877 - 1880)
Member for Wellington22 Nov 188023 Nov 18822yr(s) 2day(s)
10th (1880 - 1882)
Member for East Sydney30 Nov 18827 Oct 18852yr(s) 10mth(s) 8day(s)
11th (1882 - 1885)
Member for East Sydney16 Oct 188526 Jan 18871yr(s) 3mth(s) 11day(s)
12th (1885 - 1887)
Member for East Sydney17 Jun 189126 Oct 18914mth(s) 10day(s)
15th (1891 - 1894)
Member for East Sydney7 Nov 189125 Jun 18942yr(s) 7mth(s) 19day(s)
15th (1891 - 1894)
Member for Hastings and Macleay28 Sep 18987 Feb 19001yr(s) 4mth(s) 11day(s)
18th (1898 - 1901)
Attorney General17 Jan 18897 Mar 18891mth(s) 19day(s)
Attorney General23 Oct 189114 Dec 18932yr(s) 1mth(s) 22day(s)
Speaker of the Legislative Assembly3 Jan 188331 Jan 18874yr(s) 29day(s)
Attorney General and Representative of Government17 Jan 18897 Mar 18891mth(s) 19day(s)
Dismissal of Mr Daniels, Railway Trial Surveyor Committee No.2116 Apr 188013 Jul 18802mths 28days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Library Committee No.217 Dec 18806 Apr 18813mths 21days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Church of England Trust Property Incorporation Bill Committee No.1128 Jan 188122 Feb 188126days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Osborne’s Leasing Bill Committee No.1822 Mar 18816 Apr 188116days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Bates’s Estate Bill Committee No.1923 Mar 188129 Mar 18817days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Chairman
Library Committee No.36 Jul 188120 Dec 18815mths 15days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Osborne’s Leasing Bill Committee No.1015 Jul 18815 Aug 188122days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Elections and Qualifications Committee No.525 Aug 188228 Sep 18821mth 4days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Library Committee No.230 Aug 188221 Nov 18822mths 23days
10th (1880 - 1882)
Standing Orders Committee No.318 Jan 18832 May 18833mths 15days
11th (1882 - 1885)
Library Committee No.218 Jan 18832 May 18833mths 15days
11th (1882 - 1885)
Standing Orders Committee No.310 Oct 18831 Nov 18841yr 23days
11th (1882 - 1885)
Library Committee No.210 Oct 18831 Nov 18841yr 23days
11th (1882 - 1885)
Standing Orders Committee No.219 Nov 188427 Nov 18849days
11th (1882 - 1885)
Library Committee No.319 Nov 188427 Nov 18849days
11th (1882 - 1885)
Standing Orders Committee No.217 Mar 188527 Mar 188511days
12th (1885 - 1887)
Library Committee No.317 Mar 188527 Mar 188511days
12th (1885 - 1887)
Library Committee No.624 Sep 18852 Oct 18859days
12th (1885 - 1887)
Standing Orders Committee No.524 Sep 18852 Oct 18859days
12th (1885 - 1887)
Library Committee No.43 Dec 188525 Oct 188610mths 23days
12th (1885 - 1887)
Standing Orders Committee No.228 Jul 18911 Apr 18928mths 5days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Willoughby and Gordon Tramway Act Amending Bill Committee No.1325 Aug 189115 Sep 189122days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Simpson’s Railway Bill Committee No.198 Sep 189124 Nov 18912mths 17days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Watkins Wallis Trust Estate Bill Committee No.2615 Dec 189122 Dec 18918days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Refreshment Committee No.75 Oct 189218 Oct 189214days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Library Committee No.65 Oct 189218 Oct 189214days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Standing Orders Committee No.55 Oct 189218 Oct 189214days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Vice Suppression Bill Committee No.1125 Oct 189218 Oct 1892
15th (1891 - 1894)
Lee and Brady Settlement Bill Committee No.1914 Feb 18931 Mar 189316days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Case of John Deniff Committee No.277 Jun 189313 Jun 18937days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Standing Orders Committee No.327 Sep 18938 Dec 18932mths 12days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Vice Suppression Bill Committee No.627 Sep 18938 Dec 18932mths 12days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Refreshment Committee No.527 Sep 18938 Dec 18932mths 12days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Bankruptcy Act Amendment Bill Committee No.131 Dec 18938 Dec 18938days
15th (1891 - 1894)
Standing Orders Committee No.323 Jan 18945 Jun 18944mths 14days
16th (1894 - 1895)
Refreshment Committee No.523 Jan 189411 Jun 18944mths 20days
16th (1894 - 1895)
Bankruptcy Act Amendment Bill Committee No.725 Jan 18945 Jun 18944mths 12days
16th (1894 - 1895)
Standing Orders Committee No.213 Apr 189921 Apr 18999days
18th (1898 - 1901)
Library Committee No.313 Apr 189921 Apr 18999days
18th (1898 - 1901)
Library Committee No.52 Aug 189910 Oct 18992mths 9days
18th (1898 - 1901)
Library Committee No.52 Aug 189910 Oct 18992mths 9days
18th (1898 - 1901)
Library Committee No.52 Aug 189910 Oct 18992mths 9days
18th (1898 - 1901)
Standing Orders Committee No.48 Aug 189923 Dec 18994mths 16days
18th (1898 - 1901)

Qualifications, occupations and interests

Lawyer (Solicitor and Barrister). Educated at Fort Street Model School and Sydney Grammar School. University of Sydney (B.A ) (1868) and M.A (1870) Admitted to the Bar on 21 December 1871, becoming a Queens Counsel (QC) in 1889. Senior Puisne Judge of High Court of Australia 1903 - 1920. Privy Councillor in 1901.


Honours Received

Knight Grand Cross of St. Michael and St. George (GCMG) in 1902, after refusing knighthoods in 1887, 1891 and 1899


Membership of other Parliaments & Offices Held

Member of the Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia. Member of the House of Representatives for Hunter 1901 - 1903. First Prime Minister of Australia and Minister for External Affairs 1901 - 1903


Personal

Son of William Barton, financial agent and sharebroker, and his wife Mary Louisa Whydale. Married Jane Mason Ross on 28 December 1877 and had issue, 2 daughters and 4 sons.


Additional Information

Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 7 G. C. Bolton, 'Edmund Barton', 2000 National Archives of Australia Fact Sheet 210: 'Edmund Barton Prime Minister of Australia 1901-03' http://www.naa.gov.au/fsheets/fs210.html National Archives of Australia, 'Australia's Prime Ministers' Website http://primeministers.naa.gov.au/ Personal papers in the Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales: 1. Edmund Barton - papers, 1832-1919 (MLMSS 249) 2. Sir Edmund Barton - letters received, July 1894- March 1916, with annotated printed pages of preamble to the Federal Convention of 1898. (MLMSS 1901) 3. Sir Edmund Barton - T.L.S to J.L Weingarth, 1898, being copy. (MLDOC 2371) 4. Sir Edmund Barton - letters and papers, 1885- (Ab 145) 5. Sir Edmund Barton - letter received from Henry Parkes, 1893 (MLDOC 477). 6. Sir Edmund Barton - letter received from Nat Barnett, 1900 (MLDOC 511a). Sir David Maughan - papers, 1923-1942, together with Barton family papers, 1825-1902 (MLMSS 378). 8. Sir Edmund Barton - papers concerning Australian Federation, 1881-1898 (MLMSS 7208) ; photographs in the PICMAN Database. Text from the book: 'The Presiding Officers of the Parliament of New South Wales', Sydney, 1995 Edmund Barton was born on 18 January 1849 at Glebe in Sydney. He married Jane (Jean) Mason Ross in 1877 and they had four sons and two daughters. He was admitted to the Bar in 1871, becoming a Queen's Counsel in 1889. After defeats in 1876 and 1877 Barton entered the Legislative Assembly as the Member for the University of Sydney in 1879. When the University was disfranchised the following year he successfully contested the seat of Wellington, and remained the Member until the general elections in 1882 when he became the Member for East Sydney. Elected Speaker of the Legislative Assembly on 3 January 1883 he occupied the Chair for four years until he lost his seat in the lower house. As Speaker he displayed a sound knowledge of procedure. In 1884 he had to introduce new Standing Orders to control a number of unruly members, such as David Buchanan, whose behaviour brought upon the Assembly its reputation as the `bearpit of Macquarie Street'. He was nominated to the Legislative Council in 1889 and joined the Dibbs Cabinet as Attorney General but that Ministry lasted only a few weeks. That same year Barton was one of the New South Wales representatives at the Federal Convention and he became an important member of the Constitution Committee that framed the first draft of a bill to constitute the Commonwealth of Australia. When Barton again entered the Legislative Assembly in 1891 as the Member for East Sydney he joined the Dibbs Ministry but the government was defeated upon a motion of censure in 1893. From August until September of 1892 Barton was the acting Premier of New South Wales. Entering Federal politics at Federation, Barton became the Member of the House of Representatives for Hunter. In 1901 Edmund Barton became Australia's first Prime Minister, holding this position until 23 September 1903 when he resigned from office; a few days later he was appointed to the High Court of Australia, acting as Chief Justice in 1911. He died suddenly in January 1920 at Medlow Bath in New South Wales.