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Robert Goligtly Allen (1899–1969)

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Robert Golightly Allen (1899-1969) coalminer, wharf labourer and journalist

Birth: 22 September 1899 in Ashington, Northumberland, England, son of William Allen, master tailor, and Mary, née Parker, or Golightly. Marriage: 10 December 1926 at Waverley, Sydney, New South Wales, to Lela Laura Davison. They had one daughter. Death: 2 August 1969 at Corrimal, New South Wales.

  • Worked as a miner in England. Arrived in Australia aboard RMS Benalla on 25 May 1925.
  • 1926, dismissed from South Bulli colliery for ‘persistent defiance of management’. 
  • Militant Minority Movement (MMM) militant.
  • 1928, prominent in organisation of One Big Union (OBU) of the Unemployed among displaced coalminers, and ‘known agitator against constitutional government’.
  • 1930, journalist with Labor Daily, Illawarra, sympathetically covering strikes and 1931 Bulli dole riot. Replaced by J.T. Lang when criticisms of government became too strident.
  • 1934, organiser of anti-eviction housing reform movement for unemployed in Illawarra. Outspoken in 1934 local government elections in which he regarded rivals as New Guard supporters.
  • 1938, admitted to membership of Waterside Workers' Federation.

Len Richardson, The Bitter Years: Wollongong during the Great Depression (Sydney, c.1984).

Citation details

'Allen, Robert Goligtly (1899–1969)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 27 May 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


22 September, 1899
Ashington, Northumberland, England


2 August, 1969 (aged 69)
Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia

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