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Former Member Details

Mr William Calman GRAHAME (1863 - 1945)

Member Photo
Date of Birth: 03/02/1863
Place of Birth: Maitland, New South Wales, Australia
Date of Death: 15/09/1945
Place of Death: Gosford, New South Wales, Australia
Parliamentary Service
Position Start End Period Notes
Member of the NSW Legislative Assembly 10 Sep 1907 18 Feb 1920 12 years 5 months 9 days
Member for Wickham 10 Sep 1907 14 Sep 1910 3 years 5 days
Member for Wickham 14 Oct 1910 06 Nov 1913 3 years 24 days
Member for Wickham 06 Dec 1913 21 Feb 1917 3 years 2 months 16 days
Member for Wickham 24 Mar 1917 18 Feb 1920 2 years 10 months 26 days
Honorary Minister 15 Mar 1915 01 Jun 1915 2 months 18 days
Minister of Agriculture 01 Jun 1915 14 Jan 1920 4 years 7 months 14 days
Printing Committee No.6 30 Nov 1910 23 Dec 1910 24 days
The Governor’s Opening Speech Committee No.1 16 May 1911 16 May 1911 1 day
Printing Committee No.6 30 May 1911 13 Jul 1911 1 month 14 days
Elections and Qualifications Committee No.2 16 May 1911 01 Aug 1911 2 months 17 days
Operations of the Australian Jockey Club Committee No.8 13 Jun 1911 01 Aug 1911 1 month 20 days
Elections and Qualifications Committee No.2 30 Aug 1911 03 Oct 1911 1 month 4 days
Claims of Mr Gustave William Engel Committee No.13 10 Oct 1911 18 Oct 1911 9 days
Operations of the Australian Jockey Club Committee No.22 20 Feb 1912 28 Mar 1912 1 month 9 days
Printing Committee No.6 12 Sep 1911 28 Mar 1912 6 months 17 days
City Tattersalls Club Committee No.9 13 Sep 1912 19 Sep 1912 7 days
Newcastle Iron and Steel Works Bill Committee No.11 10 Oct 1912 31 Oct 1912 22 days
Printing Committee No.6 07 Aug 1912 04 Dec 1912 3 months 28 days
Elections and Qualifications Committee No.2 31 Jul 1912 05 Dec 1912 4 months 5 days
The Governor’s Opening Speech Committee No.1 23 Jul 1913 23 Jul 1913 1 day
Elections and Qualifications Committee No.2 29 Jul 1913 15 Oct 1913 2 months 17 days
Printing Committee No.6 06 Aug 1913 15 Oct 1913 2 months 10 days
Governor's Opening Speech 03 Mar 1914 03 Mar 1914 1 day
Governor's Opening Speech Committee No. 1 03 Mar 1914 03 Mar 1914 1 day
Elections and Qualifications Committee No. 2 03 Mar 1914 18 Apr 1914 1 month 16 days
Elections and Qualifications Committee No. 2 21 Jul 1914 23 Feb 1915 7 months 3 days
The Governor's Opening Speech Committee No. 1 07 Jul 1914 23 Feb 1915 7 months 17 days
Political Party Activity
Australian Labor Party (ALP), whip 1914 - 1916; personally opposed to conscription, left ALP with Holman; stood as an Independent in 1920; later was a supporter of J.T Lang.
Community Activity
Qualifications, occupations and interests
Jeweller. Little formal education; worked on family farm and at prawning; moved with family to Newcastle, apprentice in family's jewellery business; acted as a traveller; after death of wife moved to Gosford in c.1924, established a garage and car sales business; purchased land in the area, also the Gloucester Timber Company (Newcastle) and another timber business; lost both in the depression; president of Gosford Chamber of Commerce; noted athlete in youth; Good Templar.
Military Service
Honours Received
Membership of other Parliaments & Offices Held
Local Government Activity
Alderman at Wickham from 1900 until 1907, councillor of Erina shire from 1933 until 1936, and on creation of Gosford municipality, first Mayor from 1936 until 1944
Personal
Son of William Grahame, farmer, and Isabel Calman. Married (1) Emily Smith in 1885 and had issue, 7 children. Married (2) Myra Lascelles Campbell in 1925 and had issue, 2 sons. Methodist. Buried in Point Clare cemetery. He was involved in three scandals during his ministerial career: a coal contract which was alleged to have given special consideration to a colliery owner who was an associate of Grahame's; a contract for construction of wheat silos which was seen as unduly favourable to the contractor; and the purchase of a large amount of wheat from the Government pool by a speculator at a very advantageous price. A Royal Commission investigated the last scandal and, though its findings were inconclusive, Grahame resigned from the Ministry in January 1920.
Additional Information
Report of Royal Commission into circumstances surrounding the making of contract dated 20 February 1919, for sale to George Georgeson of 72,000 tons of wheat of what is known as 1916-17 wheat (Hon. Mr Justice Robert Darlow Pring). New South Wales Parliamentary Papers, Session 1919, Volume 1, page 179