Stuart Donaldson

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Stuart Donaldson
Stuart A. Donaldson.jpg
1st Premier of New South Wales
In office
6 June 1856 25 August 1856
Monarch Victoria
Succeeded by Charles Cowper
Constituency Sydney Hamlets
Personal details
Born
Stuart Alexander Donaldson

(1812-12-16)16 December 1812
London, England, UK
Died11 January 1867(1867-01-11) (aged 54)
Carleton Hall, Cumberland, England, UK
NationalityBritish
Spouse(s)Amelia Cowper (1854–1867)
Children Hay Frederick Donaldson
St Clair Donaldson
ProfessionBusiness agent for Richard Jones & Co, Company manager for Lloyd's of London; sheep and cattle grazier

Sir Stuart Alexander Donaldson (16 December 1812 – 11 January 1867) was the first Premier of the Colony of New South Wales.

Premier is a title for the head of government in some countries, states and sub-national governments. A second in command to a premier is designated as a vice-premier or deputy premier.

New South Wales State of Australia

New South Wales is a state on the east coast of Australia. It borders Queensland to the north, Victoria to the south, and South Australia to the west. Its coast borders the Tasman Sea to the east. The Australian Capital Territory is an enclave within the state. New South Wales' state capital is Sydney, which is also Australia's most populous city. In September 2018, the population of New South Wales was over 8 million, making it Australia's most populous state. Just under two-thirds of the state's population, 5.1 million, live in the Greater Sydney area. Inhabitants of New South Wales are referred to as New South Welshmen.

Contents

Early life

Donaldson was born in London, England. He entered his father's firm at the age of 15 and was sent first to Mexico (1831-1834), for business training. After returning to England in May 1834, Donaldson travelled to Sydney, New South Wales, aboard the Emma Eugenia where he arrived on 5 May 1835. [1] He returned to London between 1841 and 1844.

Career

In 1848, Donaldson was elected a member of the original unicameral Legislative Council of New South Wales, representing the County of Durham from February 1848 to January 1853. [2] Comments made while running for re-election in 1851, led Sir Thomas Mitchell to demand a public apology. While Donaldson complied Mitchell was not satisfied and challenged Donaldson to a duel with pistols. Both men missed but they remained antagonised. [1] He supported the development of steam ship services to Australia and the work of Caroline Chisholm. In 1852 he achieved the carriage of a motion recommending that £10,000 should be applied to supporting Chisholm's work. [3] He travelled to England in 1853-1854.

New South Wales Legislative Council Upper house of the Parliament of New South Wales

The New South Wales Legislative Council, often referred to as the upper house, is one of the two chambers of the parliament of the Australian state of New South Wales. The other is the Legislative Assembly. Both sit at Parliament House in the state capital, Sydney. It is normal for legislation to be first deliberated on and passed by the Legislative Assembly before being considered by the Legislative Council, which acts in the main as a house of review.

Electoral district of County of Durham

The Electoral district of County of Durham was an electorate of the New South Wales Legislative Council at a time when some of its members were elected and the balance were appointed by the Governor. It was named after Durham County, which lies on the north side of the Hunter River.

Thomas Mitchell (explorer) Scottish surveyor and explorer in Australia

Lieutenant Colonel Sir Thomas Livingstone Mitchell, surveyor and explorer of south-eastern Australia, was born at Grangemouth in Stirlingshire, Scotland. In 1827 he took up an appointment as Assistant Surveyor General of New South Wales. The following year he became Surveyor General and remained in this position until his death. Mitchell was knighted in 1839 for his contribution to the surveying of Australia.

From 1 February 1855 to 29 February 1856, Donaldson represented Sydney Hamlets in the Council. [2] In March 1856, Donaldson was elected to the newly created Legislative Assembly of the first Parliament, representing Sydney Hamlets. The first Legislative Assembly had trouble forming a Government. Eventually Governor Denison invited Donaldson to be Premier and he took up the offices of Premier and Colonial Secretary on 6 June 1856. Two months and 20 days later, on 25 August 1856, his Government lost a vote and he resigned. He was criticised for standing down so readily but he said, "my colleagues and myself are all too independent of office to cling to it", [1] a somewhat prophetic remark.

The Electoral district of Sydney Hamlets was an electorate of the New South Wales Legislative Council at a time when some of its members were elected and the balance were appointed by the Governor. It was a new electorate created in 1851 by the expansion of the Legislative Council to 54 members, with 18 to be appointed and 36 elected. The electoral district included what were then outer suburbs of Sydney and are now the inner suburbs of Glebe, Camperdown, O'Connell Town, Chippendale, Redfern, Surry Hills, Paddington, St Leonards and Balmain.

New South Wales Legislative Assembly one of the two chambers of the Parliament of New South Wales

The New South Wales Legislative Assembly is the lower of the two houses of the Parliament of New South Wales, an Australian state. The upper house is the New South Wales Legislative Council. Both the Assembly and Council sit at Parliament House in the state capital, Sydney. The Assembly is presided over by the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly.

William Denison British colonial administrator

Sir William Thomas Denison was Lieutenant Governor of Van Diemen's Land from 1847 to 1855, Governor of New South Wales from 1855 to 1861, and Governor of Madras from 1861 to 1866.

Donaldson was succeeded as Premier by Charles Cowper and Donaldson served as Colonial Treasurer (1856-1857) and was a Commissioner for Railways in 1857. [2] He was elected unopposed to Cumberland (South Riding) in October 1856, representing it to 1859. [1] He was a member of the Senate of the University of Sydney from 1851–61 and his brother John helped to select its academic staff. [1]

Charles Cowper New South Wales politician and Premier

Sir Charles Cowper, was an Australian politician and the Premier of New South Wales on five occasions from 1856 to 1870.

Cumberland was an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of New South Wales from 1856 to 1859, in the rural part of Cumberland County, which includes Sydney. It included all of the county south of Parramatta Road and the Great Western Highway, except for the urban electorates of Sydney (City), Sydney Hamlets, Parramatta and Cumberland Boroughs, which included Liverpool and Campbelltown. It elected two members simultaneously, with voters casting two votes and the first two candidates being elected.

University of Sydney university in Sydney, Australia

The University of Sydney is an Australian public research university in Sydney, Australia. Founded in 1850, it was Australia's first university and is regarded as one of the world's leading universities. The university is colloquially known as one of Australia's sandstone universities. Its campus is ranked in the top 10 of the world's most beautiful universities by the British Daily Telegraph and The Huffington Post, spreading across the inner-city suburbs of Camperdown and Darlington. The university comprises 9 faculties and university schools, through which it offers bachelor, master and doctoral degrees.

Late life

Donaldson returned to England for the last time in June 1859 and was knighted there in 1860. [2] Following his return, he unsuccessfully sought election to the British House of Commons for Dartmouth in 1860 and later for Barnstaple. [1] He had four sons and one daughter. The eldest son Stuart Alexander Donaldson, a distinguished scholar, became Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, Vice-chancellor of the University of Cambridge in 1912 and died in 1915; another son was St Clair Donaldson – archbishop of Brisbane. A third son, Sir Hay Frederick Donaldson, who became an eminent engineer, went with Lord Kitchener on a special mission to Russia in 1916 and died when their ship, HMS Hampshire, struck a German mine off the Orkney Islands.

Knight An award of an honorary title for past or future service with its roots in chivalry in the Middle Ages

A knight is a man granted an honorary title of knighthood by a monarch, bishop or other political or religious leader for service to the monarch or a Christian church, especially in a military capacity.

Dartmouth, also sometimes called Clifton, Dartmouth and Hardness, was a parliamentary borough in Devon which elected two Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons in 1298 and to the Commons of England, Great Britain, and the United Kingdom from 1351 until 1832, and then one member from 1832 until 1868, when the borough was disfranchised.

Barnstaple was a parliamentary constituency centred on the town of Barnstaple in Devon, in the South West of England. It returned two Members of Parliament to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom until 1885, when its representation was reduced to a single member.

Stuart Donaldson died at Carleton Hall, near Holmrook, in Cumberland, England on 11 January 1867.

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References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Draper, Sandra. "Donaldson, Sir Stuart Alexander (1812–1867)". Australian Dictionary of Biography . Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
  2. 1 2 3 4 "Sir Stuart Alexander Donaldson (1812-1867)". Former Members of the Parliament of New South Wales . Retrieved 20 April 2019.
  3. Serle, Percival (1949). "Donaldson, Sir Stuart Alexander (1812–1867)". Dictionary of Australian Biography . Sydney: Angus and Robertson. Retrieved 11 September 2014.}

 

Political offices
New creation Premier of New South Wales
6 June 1856 – 25 August 1856
Succeeded by
Charles Cowper
Preceded by
Edward Deas Thomson
Colonial Secretary of New South Wales
6 June 1856 – 25 August 1856
Succeeded by
Charles Cowper