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Member Details

Mr James BYRNES (1806 - 1886)

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Date of Birth: 15/01/1806
Place of Birth: Edgeworthstown, County Longford, Ireland
Date of Death: 17/09/1886
Place of Death: Parramatta, New South Wales, Australia
Parliamentary Service
Position Start End Period Notes
Member of the NSW Legislative Council 01 Mar 1850 30 Jun 1851 1 year 4 months 2 days An Elective Member of the first Legislative Council 1843 - 1856 for the County of Cumberland
Member of the NSW Legislative Assembly 16 Jun 1857 26 Mar 1861 3 years 9 months 11 days
Member of the NSW Legislative Council 13 May 1861 13 May 1861 1 day Did not take his seat. First (Quinquennial) Appointments under the Constitution Act. Date of Writ of Summons 10 May 1861.
Member of the NSW Legislative Assembly 24 Nov 1864 03 Feb 1872 7 years 2 months 11 days
Member for Cumberland (South Riding) 16 Jun 1857 19 Dec 1857 6 months 4 days
Member for Parramatta 19 Jan 1858 11 Apr 1859 1 year 2 months 24 days
Member for Parramatta 18 Jun 1859 10 Nov 1860 1 year 4 months 24 days
Member for Parramatta 08 Dec 1860 26 Mar 1861 3 months 19 days
Member for Parramatta 24 Nov 1864 22 Jan 1866 1 year 1 month 30 days
Member for Parramatta 31 Jan 1866 15 Nov 1869 3 years 9 months 16 days
Member for Parramatta 17 Dec 1869 20 Dec 1870 1 year 4 days
Member for Parramatta 02 Jan 1871 03 Feb 1872 1 year 1 month 2 days
Secretary for Public Works 22 Jan 1866 26 Oct 1868 2 years 9 months 5 days
Secretary for Public Works 16 Dec 1870 13 May 1872 1 year 4 months 28 days
Kiama Steam Navigation Company’s Bill Committee No.27 13 Jul 1858 26 Nov 1858 4 months 14 days
Governor General’s Opening Speech Committee No.1 09 Dec 1858 09 Dec 1858 1 day
Condition of the Working Classes of the Metropolis Committee No.19 30 Sep 1859 04 Jul 1860 9 months 5 days
Mount Keira Tramroad Bill Committee No.22 12 Oct 1859 04 Jul 1860 8 months 23 days
Petition of Alexander Berry, Esquire, Committee No.30 03 Feb 1860 04 Jul 1860 5 months 2 days
Retrenchment in the Public Expenditure Committee No.7 14 Sep 1859 04 Jul 1860 9 months 21 days
St Andrew’s College Bill Committee No.24 14 Oct 1859 04 Jul 1860 8 months 21 days
Tanners and Curriers’ Bill Committee No.37 29 Feb 1860 04 Jul 1860 4 months 6 days Chairman
Wesley College Bill Committee No.21 12 Oct 1859 04 Jul 1860 8 months 23 days Chairman
Business of Tanners and Curriers Committee No.12 19 Oct 1860 09 Nov 1860 22 days
Petition of Mr Alexander Berry Committee No.9 12 Oct 1860 09 Nov 1860 29 days
Petition of Mrs Frances Dr Courcy Committee No.25 18 Oct 1859 09 Nov 1860 1 year 23 days
Church of England Synod Bill Committee No.12 25 Apr 1865 09 May 1865 15 days
Sydney Sewerage Committee No.17 16 May 1865 21 Jun 1865 1 month 6 days
William Goodin Committee No.11 21 Nov 1865 22 Dec 1865 1 month 2 days
Disease in Fruit Trees Committee No.6 31 Oct 1865 07 Apr 1866 5 months 8 days
Disease in Fruit Trees Committee No.5 31 Jul 1866 13 Sep 1866 1 month 14 days
City of Newcastle Gas and Coke Company’s Incorporation Bill Committee No.21 22 Nov 1866 29 Nov 1866 8 days
Railway from Echuca to Deniliquin Committee No.10 21 Sep 1866 20 Dec 1866 3 months
Hartley Vale Colliery Railway Bill Committee No.12 25 Sep 1867 08 Oct 1867 14 days
Claims of Mr Bartholomew Rush Committee No.17 22 Nov 1867 01 Apr 1868 4 months 11 days
Petition of Thomas Larkin Committee No.13 27 Sep 1867 21 Apr 1868 6 months 26 days
Railway from Echuca to Deniliquin Committee No.6 02 Jul 1867 27 Apr 1868 9 months 26 days
Removal of Mr Samuel Charles from the Commission of the Peace Committee No.12 27 Jan 1869 23 Mar 1869 1 month 25 days
Claims of Mr Bartholomew Rush Committee No.8 08 Oct 1869 13 Nov 1869 1 month 6 days
Robert’s Trust Bill Committee No.7 05 Oct 1869 13 Nov 1869 1 month 9 days
The Bank of New South Wales Bill of 1870 Committee No.15 02 Mar 1870 15 Mar 1870 14 days
Tolls on Government Bridges Committee No.19 22 Mar 1870 07 May 1870 1 month 16 days
Claims of Mr Bartholomew Rush Committee No.7 25 Aug 1870 23 Sep 1870 30 days
Coal Staithes at Newcastle Committee No.14 25 Jan 1871 13 Jun 1871 4 months 20 days
Parramatta Gas Company’s Incorporation Bill Committee No.8 07 Dec 1871 14 Dec 1871 8 days Chairman
Circular Quay Committee No.10 23 Jan 1872 01 Feb 1872 10 days
Political Party Activity
Community Activity
Commissioned as a Justice of the Peace. A leading Methodist layman. Played a role in the erection of the first Methodist Church in Parramatta. Sunday school teacher and circuit steward in Parramatta. President of Parramatta Hospital Board from 1869 to 1873 and was associated with the Parramatta Benevolent Society.
Qualifications, occupations and interests
First employment was as an apprentice carpenter. At a later time became a successful builder. In the 1830's was a pioneer of steam ferry transport on the Parramatta River with his brother William (member of the Legislative Council from 1858-1861 and 1861-1891). They built a steam flour mill in 1840-1841 and later wool and cloth mills. In 1862, they employed around 50 people. Also jointly owned the largest store in Parramatta. Manufacturer; storekeeper; company director. Director of the Illawarra Steam Navigation Company and of Colonial Mutual Life Assurance Company. Trustee of the Parramatta Savings Bank and a Valuer with the Public Works Department in 1875 to 1886.
Military Service
Honours Received
Membership of other Parliaments & Offices Held
Local Government Activity
Alderman of Parramatta and its Mayor between 1862-1866.
Personal
Son of James Byrnes and his wife Frances Morehouse. Arrived in New South Wales with his family in July 1808. Volunteered for garrison duty and was attached to the New South Wales Corps and later the 73rd Regiment. James (Jr) had little education. Married (1) Ruth Barber in 1826 at Parramatta and had issue, 5 sons and 1 daughter. Married (2) Ann Harris at Mudgee on 30 September 1852 and had issue, 1 daughter. Wesleyan Methodist.
Additional Information
Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 3 Personal papers in the Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales: James Byrnes - papers, 1866 - 1870 (MLMSS 1366)