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Members of the first Parliament - 1860

Queensland’s first Parliament - Historical Background

Following the establishment of the colony of Queensland on 6 June 1859, Sir George Ferguson Bowen was appointed as the new colony’s first Governor on 10 December 1859.

Governor Bowen selected Sir Robert George Wyndham Herbert to serve as Colonial Secretary and lead an interim government until elections for the first parliament were held.

These elections occurred between 27 April 1860 and 11 May 1860 for positions in the Legislative Assembly (the lower house) of Queensland’s first parliament. At these first elections, a total of 26 positions were contested to represent 16 electorates. Of these 16 original electorates, seven were multi-member electorates with either two or three members simultaneously representing those districts, while the remaining nine electorates were single-member districts.

For the Legislative Council, Queensland’s upper house, a total of 11 members were initially appointed by Governor Bowen to serve in that house. A further four members were appointed soon after with each of these four appointees present at the parliament’s second day of sitting. For the first parliament, these original appointments were for a period of five-years. Appointments to the Legislative Council subsequent to the first parliament were life appointments.

The inaugural meeting of Queensland’s first parliament occurred on 22 May 1860 with official sittings then commencing on 29 May 1860. The term of the first parliament lasted until 20 May 1863 with elections for the second parliament then occurring from 30 May to 27 June 1863.

Below is a list of all Members and Principal Permanent Officers of the first parliament of Queensland. The list is divided into three sections:

  1. Members of the Legislative Assembly;
  2. Members of the Legislative Council; and
  3. Principal Permanent Officers of Queensland’s first parliament

Members and Officials of Queensland's First Parliament

1. Members of the Legislative Assembly

Member Electorate Other Information
Charles William Blakeney Town of Brisbane  
Alfred Delves Broughton West Moreton Resigned 21 December 1860
Henry Buckley East Moreton Resigned 29 September 1860
Charles Coxen Northern Downs  
George Edmondstone East Moreton  
Gilbert Eliott Wide Bay First Speaker
John Ferrett Maranoa  
Charles Fitzsimmons Port Curtis Resigned 3 September 1861
Frederick Augustus Forbes Ipswich  
St George Richard Gore Warwick Resigned 14 January 1862
Charles Robert Haly Burnett  
Sir Robert George Wyndham Herbert Leichhardt First Premier and Colonial Secretary
Henry Jordan Town of Brisbane Resigned 17 October 1860
Sir Charles Lilley Hamlet of Fortitude Valley First Attorney General
Arthur Macalister Ipswich  
Sir Robert Ramsay Mackenzie Burnett  
Thomas De Lacy Moffatt Western Downs  
William Lambie Nelson West Moreton Unseated by petition on 22 June 1860*
Patrick O'Sullivan Ipswich  
Ratcliffe Pring Eastern Downs Appointed to the Legislative Council on 24 April 1862
George Raff Town of Brisbane  
Henry Richards Town of South Brisbane  
Charles James Royds Leichhardt  
James Taylor Western Downs  
George Thorn (Snr) West Moreton Resigned 3 April 1861
John Watts Drayton & Toowoomba Resigned 26 July 1862

The following Members were elected to the Legislative Assembly during the first Parliament at by-elections subsequent to 22 May 1860.

Member Electorate Other Information
Joseph Fleming West Moreton Elected on 9 July 1860 (by-election) then resigned 3 November 1862
Thomas Symes Warry East Moreton Elected on 27 October 1860 (by-election)
Robert Cribb Brisbane Elected on 8 December 1860 (by-election)
Henry Challinor West Moreton Elected on 12 January 1861 (by-election)
Benjamin Cribb West Moreton Elected on 26 April 1861 (by-election)
Alfred Sandeman Port Curtis Elected on 15 October 1861 (by-election)
John Gore Jones Warwick Elected on 4 February 1862 (by-election)
John Donald McLean Eastern Downs Elected on 2 May 1862 (by-election)
William Henry Groom Drayton & Toowoomba Elected on 11 August 1862 (by-election)
Sir Joshua Peter Bell West Moreton Elected on 15 December 1862 (by-election)

*William Lambie Nelson's election to the multi-member district of West Moreton was challenged prior to the first sitting of the Queensland Parliament due to Nelson's breaching of nomination rules. The challenge to his election was presented to Governor Bowen on 16 May 1860, first considered by the parliament on 14 June 1860 and then upheld on 22 June 1860. Nelson was not present for any sittings of parliament from 22 May to 22 June 1860. With the position for West Moreton declared vacant, the colony's first by-election was held on 9 July 1860 with Joseph Fleming being the successful candidate.

2. Members of the Legislative Council

The 11 members below were appointed by Governor Bowen on 11 May 1860 to serve a five-year term as Members of Queensland’s inaugural Legislative Council.

  • John Balfour
  • Francis Edward Bigge
  • Alfred William Compigné
  • George Fullerton
  • John James Galloway
  • James Turquand Laidley
  • John Frederick McDougall
  • Robert George Massie
  • Sir Charles Nicholson, Bart 
  • Sir Maurice Charles O’Connel
  • William Henry Yaldwyn

The four members below were appointed by Governor Bowen on 23 May 1860 and were present at the sittings on 29 May 1860.

  • Henry Bates Fitz
  • George Harris
  • Daniel Foley Roberts
  • Stephen Simpson

The eight members below were appointed by Governor Bowen subsequent to 29 May 1860 to serve in Queensland’s inaugural Legislative Council.

  • William Barker – appointed on 26 April 1861
  • Alfred Henry Brown – appointed on 26 April 1861
  • William Hobbs – appointed on 26 April 1861
  • Louis Hope – appointed on 24 April 1862
  • William Landsborough – appointed on 20 December 1862
  • John McConnel – appointed on 26 April 1861
  • William Duckett White – appointed on 26 April 1861
  • Western Wood – appointed on 26 April 1861

3. Principal Permanent Officers of Queensland’s first parliament

  • Louis Bernays – Clerk of the Legislative Assembly
  • Henry Johnson – Clerk of the Legislative Council
  • Captain RJ Coley – Sergeant-At-Arms of the Legislative Assembly
  • Colonel Charles Gray – Usher of the Black Rod and Parliamentary Librarian (18 May 1860 – 27 January 1861)
  • Frances Chester Master - Usher of the Black Rod and Parliamentary Librarian (28 January 1861 – 31 July 1861)
  • Rev. James Robert Moffatt - Parliamentary Librarian (1 August 1861 – 21 May 1874)