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Collins, Charles (Charlie) (1867–1936)

This article was published:

Charles Collins, n.d.

Charles Collins, n.d.

Charles (Charlie) Collins (1867-1936) labourer, trade union official and politician 

Birth: 25 September 1867 at Willey, Warwickshire, England, son of Henry Collins, agricultural labourer and Unitarian preacher, and Elizabeth, née Smith. Marriages: (1) 10 December 1892 in Gympie, Queensland, to Sarah Jane McTaggart, née Browne, late McTaggart (1861-1911), who had been born in Rockhampton. They had one son and three daughters. (2) 8 January 1913 in Gympie to Anne Gierke (1878-1960). They had one son and one daughter. Death: 28 March 1936 in Brisbane. Religion: Anglican. 

  • Educated at Willey Church of England School. In 1880 was a farm labourer and brickyard worker.
  • In 1883 arrived in Maryborough, Queensland, aboard Kapunda. Was a plantation worker at Antigua and Pialba. From 1884 to 1886 was an unsuccessful Gympie miner. In 1886 tried Kimberley goldfield in Western Australia but returned in 1887 to Gympie.
  • From 1890 to 1891 worked as a labourer jn Victoria, then was a political and Amalgamated Miners Association organiser back in Gympie.
  • 1908 was general organiser, Australian Labor Federation. 1912-1915, Australian Workers’ Union organiser in North Queensland.
  • Elected as Australian Labor Party member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly for the seat of Burke from 2 October 1909 to 27 April 1912 when he recontested Burke but was defeated. Again became ALF organiser for the far northern district.
  • Held seat of Bowen for the ALP in the Queensland Legislative Assembly from 22 May 1915 to his death. He had previously suffered several years of illness stemming from his work in the mines.
  • In 1924 Collins had briefly became 'party room' premier. During a caucus dispute premier Theodore announced that he and his cabinet would resign their positions. The caucus then had to elect a new leader and, to his surprise, Collins was voted 'Premier elect'. After three hours of deliberation, caucus asked Theodore to return to office.

Sources
Duncan Bruce Waterson, Biographical register of the Queensland Parliament 1860-1929 (Canberra, 2001).

Additional Resources

  • profile, Daily Standard (Brisbane), 10 May 1915, p 3

Citation details

'Collins, Charles (Charlie) (1867–1936)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, https://peopleaustralia.anu.edu.au/biography/collins-charles-charlie-33071/text41235, accessed 28 January 2023.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012