Thursday, March 25, 2010

Frank Tudor

I was looking at a list of Labor Party leaders the other day. I think Frank Tudor's name might have been on it. Well, let me go and see if I'm remembering correctly, or not.

Yep. I'm right. Tudor was the leader of the Labor Party from 1916 to 1921. I'd be so impressed with myself if I knew who the Prime Minister was during that time. But I don't. Maybe it was Billy Hughes? Wasn't he Prime Minister around the 1920's?

Holy crap! I was right!! I'm so excited. The flashcards are working. Lord Wiki says that Hughes was Prime Minister from 1915 to 1923. I know in the beginning he was Labor; but then there was a split and he became Nationalist. Well, it's quite likely that split happened in 1916, since Tudor became the leader then. That would make sense.

Lord Wiki has a photograph of all the Labor Members of Parliament at the 1901 election. It's pretty cool. All the men, except one, have a mustache or beard. I wonder about the guy who doesn't. Why did he choose to be different?

Oh wait. Lord Wiki provides the names of all the people in the photograph. The guy with no facial hair is David Watkins. He's handsome....at least I think so.

Andrew Fisher is pretty sexy, at least in that photo.

Billy Hughes is easy to recognize. You know, he kind of looks like Ben Linus, in a way.

I should get back on track. I just love that picture.

Baby Frank was born in Williamstown Victoria, on 29 January 1866. That means he would have been about thirty-five when Australia became a Federation.

I'm looking at Google Maps. Williamstown is in Melbourne, south-west of the CBD.

Speaking of Melbourne, I finally got a report back from my parents. They loved it there. I think today they're going to Hobart.

Soon after little Frank was born, the family moved to the suburb of Richmond which is closer to the CBD. When I started typing Richmond Street into Google Maps, the memory thing showed that I once looked up Johnson Street in Melbourne. I wonder why. I should go search it on my blog.

Well, I went to do it, but I'd have to read through three of my very long posts to find it. I'm not in the mood for that right now.

Daddy and Mommy Tudor were both Welsh. Lord Wiki doesn't say whether they were born in Australia, or emigrated there.

Daddy Tudor was a ballastman. What's that? I'm not easily finding an answer to that question, so please tell me if you know.

Tudor went to Richmond Central State School. I'm not finding a website for them, so it might no longer be in existence. But I did find this historical photo.

After he finished school, Tudor did some brief work at a sawmill and boot factory. Then he went into the hat-making industry. It started with an apprenticeship, and then he worked around Victoria. Later, he went off to the UK, and worked there.

Oh, this is sad. He met a woman named Alice Smale. The two got married, and then she died about a year later. I wonder what happened.

Tudor continued his stay in Britain. He became vice-president of the local Felt-Hatters union. Then a few years later, he found another woman to marry.

Close to the turn of the century, Tudor moved back to Australia. He worked at mills in Abbottsford. That's another Melbourne suburb. He joined a union thing called Victorian Trades Hall Council, and became the president of it in 1900. The Victorian Trade Hall Council's website has a memorial project for a woman named Anna Stewart. She was active in the unions and died when she was thirty-five.

Once Australia became a Federation, Tudor got into Parliament via the seat of Yarra. This is the one that Jim Cairns had. Right? I should know for sure since I wrote about him yesterday.

Yeah. Lord Wiki confirms that information.

Tudor had the seat until 1922. Then it went to James Scullin until 1929.

Back in 1901, Tudor became the Labor Party's whip. I forgot what that is.

Lord Wiki says it's the member of the party that kind of whips people into obedience. There's no literal whipping, of course. But they are kind of like the disciplinarians.

Tudor was also Assistant Secretary, and then was promoted to Secretary.

With Fisher as Prime Minister, Tudor got the role of Minister for Trade and Customs.

In 1916, the Labor Party split happened. Tudor resigned from the Hughes cabinet because of conscription issues. Since Hughes was pro-conscription, I guess I can assume Tudor was against it.

On the page for Billy Hughes, Lord Wiki says it was Tudor who ended up expelling Hughes from the Labor Party. This came after Hughes walked out and said Let those who think like me, follow me.
Lord Wiki has some conflicting dates. Sometimes he says Tudor became Leader of the Labor Party in 1916, and sometimes he says it's 1917.

Tudor died a few years later in 1922. He was the first the Labor Party's first leader to not become Prime Minister. Now there's been a few others since then: Matthew Charlton, Doc Evatt, Arthur Callwell, Bill Hayden, Kim Beazley, Mark Latham, and Simon Crean. I think I've written about all of them except for Carlton. And he's the guy I'm researching tomorrow.

Now I'm going to read the Australian Biographical Dictionary.

They say Tudor's parents were born in Wales. I'm not sure when they came to Australia though.

Tudor was really into the whole hat thing. His life dream was to manage the finest hat factory in the world. I think it's neat that he was so passionate.

Tudor was well-known in Richmond. I guess he was popular. Was it his personality? Or did people love his hats? Maybe it was a bit of both.

Well, the biographical dictionary says that Tudor was deeply kind. I love deeply kind people. I wish there were more of them in the world. They're much preferable to mean people....or superficially kind ones.

Deacon was a deacon of the Congregational Church. I'm not sure what a deacon is. Lord Wiki has a long entry about it. I don't want to read the whole thing, but I'm getting that it's someone who does work for the church.

He was against sectarianism. I wasn't sure what that was. Lord Wiki says it's when there's hatred and bigotry within a group. For example, there is sometimes animosity between Orthodox and Reform Jews. And of course, there's also animosity between Catholics and Protestants.

The Congregationalist Church is Protestant. The biographical dictionary says that Tudor angered some Protestants by supporting something called Home Rule. It has something to do with Ireland. I'm not sure what all this is, but I guess it has something to do with Tudor being against sectarianism. Maybe he wanted to help the Catholics in some way.

There was this great TV movie, about Irish and Protestant Catholics, when I was a kid. It was about a program in America where families would take in Irish children from each religion. They tried to reduce all the hatred. I wish I remembered the name of it. Maybe I'll do some googling.....

No, I'm not finding it.

But here's a website about Home Rule. It was basically about giving Ireland more self-governing power, rather than being ruled by London. I guess Protestants were less supportive of the Irish having freedom? I'm really lagging behind on my Irish history.

When there's talk of Islamic terrorism, and it leans in an anti-Islam/Middle Eastern way, Tim will often bring up Irish-terrorism. I think this is a reminder that terrorism is not a strictly Middle-Eastern phenomena.

I'm sure that in some ways the Irish relationship to England can be compared to the Palestinian relationship to Israel. But I'm too ignorant to make concise comparisons. I guess the main difference I can see is that the Irish stuck to bombing in England. Right? Did they ever go outside of there? And I think they stuck to a specific cause....Irish freedom in that little UK island. It's not like Catholics around the world joined the game, and started bombing people in other countries. Or maybe I'm wrong. Does anyone know?

Also, how is Ireland doing now? I don't hear much about problems there, but maybe it's overshadowed by other news. If Ireland and England ARE doing well, maybe the Palestinians and Israeli's can learn from it?

Let me get back to Tudor.

He didn't drink or smoke. That's cool. Smoking smells bad.

He was a supporter of local sports.

He would have street meetings, and people would be called to it with an auctioneer's bell.

He was fairly moderate in his political views, and was able to earn respect from both sides of the house. This is left/right....not upper and lower. I think.

I guess despite their political differences, Tudor and Hughes maintained some kind of relationship. When Tudor died, Hughes was one of the pallbearers. Or maybe it was a political move on Hughes' part. I hope not.

I'm done with this website too.

I have a feeling there's not going to be much there. I might quit early, which I won't mind since I worked a LONG time yesterday.

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