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Richard Rowland (Dick) Bow (1868–1941)

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Richard Rowland ‘Dick’ Bow (1868-1941) shearer, trade union official 

Birth: 3 August 1868 in Brisbane, Queensland, son of Sydney-born David Bow, saddler, and  Margaret Theresa, née Berry, born in Cork, Ireland. Marriage: 22 June 1901 at Longreach, Queensland, to Elizabeth Ann Baker. They had one daughter. Death: (accidentally) 11 June 1941 in Brisbane Hospital. Religion: Catholic. 

  • As a youth was prominent in sporting circles and “a good rider over the sticks”. Worked as a blade shearer then a drover.
  • In 1891 was a shearer present at Barcaldine strike camp; also took a prominent part in the 1894 shearers’ strike, after which he became a butcher in Longreach.
  • Succeeded William Kewley as secretary of the Longreach branch of the Australian Workers' Union from 1906 until defeated by Jack Durkin in 1921. Returned to the butchery business then became inspector of workers’ accommodation at Longreach. Member Australian Labor Party and campaign organiser.
  • On the death of John Payne was elected member of Legislative Assembly, Queensland, for Mitchell at a by-election on May 1928. Held the seat until June 1932 when it was abolished in a redistribution and he failed to win preselection for the seat of Gregory.
  • After retiring from parliament became stock inspector at the Brisbane abattoir; was supervisor, Queensland Meat Board, Cannon Hill, until his death.
  • For many years was president of Longreach Hospital board.
  • Cause of death crushed pelvis.

Duncan B. Waterson, Biographical Register of the Queensland Parliament 1860-1929 (second revised edition, Sydney 2001), p. 18; biography & photo: Worker (Brisbane) 2 May 1928, p.12, Westralian Worker, 25 May 1928, p.2; Worker (Brisbane), 20 December 1917, p.4, 6 June 1928, p.19, 17 June 1941, p.4; Australian Worker (Sydney), 2 July 1941, p.12.

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Citation details

'Bow, Richard Rowland (Dick) (1868–1941)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 20 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


3 August, 1868
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


11 June, 1941 (aged 72)
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Cause of Death

workplace accident

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.

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