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Francis Augustus Dunleavy (1879–1953)

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Francis Augustus Dunleavy (1879-1953) coalminer, trade union leader and industrial inspector 

Birth: 9 June 1879 at Mount Bischoff, Tasmania, son of John Sampson Dunleavy, coalminer, and Anne, née Corke. Marriage: 22 July 1905 at Pitt Street Unitarian Church, Sydney, New South Wales, to Ada Leah Gaudry. They had one daughter and one son. Death: 14 February 1953 at Carlton, Sydney. Religion: Anglican.

  • Coalminer at Helensburgh, NSW, by 1906.
  • Secretary, Illawarra Colliery Employees' Association/Southern District Federated Coal and Shale Workers' Association (C&SWA) 1907-1908; president 1909-1911. Critical of Peter Bowling's leadership of 1909 coal strike, declaring that the strike had been ordered at "an inopportune time" and "not on a good cause". In urging an end to the strike, charged Western District representative Edward Truscott with seeking to keep mines idle in order to benefit own members.
  • After strike spoke out against Federated C&SWA, urging Illawarra miners to affiliate with the Sydney Labour Council "rather than Newcastle". Union representative on Conciliation Board set up after 1909 strike.
  • In 1911, after extended absence from employment at Helensburgh mine through union duties and ill-health, was refused further employment, a situation which protracted negotiations and legal action failed to reverse. Placed on victimisation pay and employed briefly as full-time district president but resigned June 1911.
  • Continued on Conciliation Board until its abolition in same year following his claim that the board was "farcical".
  • Was an industrial inspector, living in Carlton, Sydney, by 1913. Retired from public service as superintending inspector of factories and shops in September 1943.
  • Died of coronary occlusion, coronary atheroma and arteriosclerosis.

Robin Gollan, The coalminers of New South Wales: a history of the Union (Melbourne, 1963); Edgar Ross, A history of the Miners' Federation of Australia ([Sydney] 1970).

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Citation details

'Dunleavy, Francis Augustus (1879–1953)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 24 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


9 June, 1879
Waratah, Tasmania, Australia


14 February, 1953 (aged 73)
Carlton, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death

heart disease

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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