Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Anthonys' Claim to Sole Australian Fame

Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Anthonys' Claim to Sole Australian Fame

Article excerpt

Byline: LOCAL HISTORY margaret henderson

IN THE history of politics in Australia there have been many families who have had more than one member elected to State or Federal parliament.

However, there is only one family who can boast that a father, son, and grandson were elected to a Federal seat and, that during their terms of office all served as ministers of the Crown.

This family is the Anthonys - Hubert Lawrence (Tony), John Douglas (Doug), and Lawrence James (Larry) - and the federal electorate is Richmond.

A recent publication by Paul Davey titled Politics in the Blood: the Anthonys of Richmond tells a fascinating story not only of the family itself but also of the political events, conflicts and dilemmas of this important period of Australian history which included the end of the Great Depression, World War II, and post-war reconstruction.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the book relates to H L Anthony, the founder of the political dynasty. He was a person who knew the value of history and his massive archive collection, preserved by his son Doug, formed the basis of Davey's book.

Tony Anthony was born at Warren in western NSW in 1897. He had an Australian-born father, a Scottish mother, and two brothers.

When he was 14 he left school and joined the post office as a telegram boy. His ability was soon recognised and he was promoted to postal assistant and sent to Orange. At the time he was said to be the youngest postal assistant in Australia.

When World War I began in 1914 Tony was eager to enlist. He persuaded his father to give him permission but, even so, when he signed up on October 28 he gave his age as 20 instead of 17.

He served as a sapper in the 2nd Light Horse Brigade and, after a short time in Egypt, was among the 2000 men and 800 horses sent to Gallipoli.

His job appears to have been in communications (no doubt because of his postal work) as he was based most of the time on his troopship.

However, he also had to take stores and supplies from the ship to those on the beaches and in the trenches. …

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