Parker Moloney

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Parker Moloney
Parker Moloney.jpg
Minister for Markets and Transport
In office
22 October 1929 6 January 1932
Prime Minister James Scullin
Preceded by Thomas Paterson
Succeeded by Charles Hawker (Markets)
Archdale Parkhill (Transport)
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Hume
In office
13 December 1919 19 December 1931
Preceded by Franc Falkiner
Succeeded by Thomas Collins
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Indi
In office
5 September 1914 5 May 1917
Preceded by Cornelius Ahern
Succeeded by John Leckie
In office
13 April 1910 31 May 1913
Preceded by Joseph Brown
Succeeded by Cornelius Ahern
Personal details
Born(1879-08-12)12 August 1879
Port Fairy, Victoria, Australia
Died8 May 1961(1961-05-08) (aged 81)
Victoria, Australia
Political party Labor
Spouse(s)Margaret Mary Mills

Parker John Moloney (12 August 1879 8 May 1961) was an Australian politician. A member of the Labor Party, he served in the House of Representatives from 1910 to 1913, 1914 to 1917, and 1919 to 1931. He was Minister for Markets and Minister for Transport in the Scullin Government from 1929 to 1932.


Early life

Moloney was born in Port Fairy, Victoria, to Maurice Moloney and Mary, née Bowe. He became a teacher at John O'Hara's South Melbourne College in 1902 and then at University High School. Around this time he began to be interested in labour politics and attended the Catholic Young Men's Association. In 1906 he became principal of Beechworth College. [1]

Member of Parliament

In 1910 Moloney won the Victorian seat of Indi for Labor. He lost it in 1913, but regained it in 1914. In the same year, on 15 April, he was married to Margaret Mary Mills. However, it was his opposition to conscription which lost him the seat for good in 1917. He relocated to New South Wales and in 1919 became the first Labor representative for Hume. Despite representing a New South Wales seat, he continued to live in Melbourne, but built up a strong support base in Hume. He was one of only a small number of people who have represented more than one state or territory in the Parliament.

In 1928, Moloney fell gravely ill with appendicitis, and was operated on by his parliamentary colleague Earle Page. [2]

Moloney was Minister for Markets and Transport from 1929 to 1931 as part of the Scullin government. He negotiated Australia's first trade treaty with Canada, and was rewarded with a parliamentary ovation. Despite many continuing exploits, including preparing for the Imperial Economic Conference of 1932, to be held at Ottawa, Canada, Moloney lost his seat in the conservative landslide of 1931.

Later life

There were no parliamentary pensions, which left Moloney almost destitute. He sold his house and moved in with his sister-in-law. With former colleague Richard Keane, he managed to buy two old mining dumps near Bendigo, which were sold to Collins House for £3000. He also became active in the share market. By 1939 he was president of the Australian Labor Party in Victoria, but, despite two unsuccessful Senate campaigns, he withdrew from politics in 1943, when Labor won office. Although he gradually moved away from the ALP, he certainly never joined the DLP and in fact, disagreed with many of the policies of the Democratic Labor Party. Chairman of the Victorian Dried Fruits Board from 1936 to 1957, he was only able to retire after Prime Minister Robert Menzies ensured he would be provided with a pension. He was closely associated with Archbishop Daniel Mannix, and was always interested in horse-racing.

Personal life

Moloney died on 8 May 1961 and was given a state funeral. He was remembered by Archbishop Guilford Young as "outstanding among a great generation of Catholic men who had a special Catholic ethos". [1]

Moloney was a devout Catholic. In 1947 he participated in a lecture series sponsored by the Legion of Mary, speaking on the subject "why I am a Catholic". He spoke of his conviction that the Catholic Church was the one true church and according to The Advocate was of the view that "the Christian religion was being assailed as never before by a ruthless enemy pledged to an insidious Marxian doctrine aimed at the complete dethronement of God". [3]

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  1. 1 2 Lloyd, C. J. (1986). "Moloney, Parker John (1879–1961)". Australian Dictionary of Biography . Melbourne University Press. ISSN   1833-7538 . Retrieved 25 August 2007 via National Centre of Biography, Australian National University.
  2. "EARLE PAGE SAVES LIFE OF LABOR MEMBER", Labor Daily , 18 September 1928.
  3. "Marks Which Identify the One, True Church". The Advocate. Melbourne. 12 November 1947.
Political offices
Preceded by
Thomas Paterson
Minister for Markets and Transport
Succeeded by
Archdale Parkhill
Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Joseph Brown
Member for Indi
Succeeded by
Cornelius Ahern
Preceded by
Cornelius Ahern
Member for Indi
Succeeded by
John Leckie
Preceded by
Franc Falkiner
Member for Hume
Succeeded by
Thomas Collins