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James Henry (Jimmy) Griffin (1891–1960)

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James Griffin, n.d.

James Griffin, n.d.

James Henry (Jimmy) Griffin (1891-1960) miner, trade union official and Labor Party activist 

Birth: 14 September 1891 at Maryborough, Queensland, son of Queensland-born John Henry Griffin (1863-1925), shipwright, and his first wife Marian [Marion], née Oliver (1866-1907), born at Gainford, Durham, England. Marriage: 23 December 1913 at Annerley, Queensland, with Presbyterian forms, to Queensland-born Catherine Ann Gray (1890-1984). They had two sons. Death: 9 September 1960 in hospital at Rockhampton. Religion: buried with Congregational forms. 

  • First joined union (Coal Shale Employees’ Union) when working as a miner at Ipswich, Queensland, 1907.
  • To Maryborough in 1911 where he worked in Flying Gang, joining Australian Workers’ Association and then went to Mt Morgan where he took part in 1912 strike.
  • 1913, cane cutter, Bundaberg, joining Australian Workers’ Union (AWU) .
  • At Mt Morgan during World War I he was chairman and vice chairman of AWU branch. Chairman of Australian Labor Party at Mt Morgan, as well as employees’ representative on hospital committee and Technical College board. Active in anti-conscription campaign.
  • Charged with breach of War Precautions legislation.
  • Prominent in strike action in support of Unionists’ preference principle and blacklisted by employers. In 1921 obtained work as fettler.
  • Transferred to Rockhampton Railway workshops, but again blacklisted for ‘active role in the interests of the working class’. Transferred to remote Blackall-Yaraka section.
  • At railway workshops was labourers’ representative on Australian Railways Union (ARU) shop committees. President of Rockhampton sub branch of ARU, district treasurer and later State councillor.
  • Active in many ALP campaigns and in railway strikes, 1928, lock-outs of 1927 and 1948.

, 16 December 1957.

Citation details

'Griffin, James Henry (Jimmy) (1891–1960)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 31 May 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

James Griffin, n.d.

James Griffin, n.d.

Life Summary [details]


14 September, 1891
Maryborough, Queensland, Australia


9 September, 1960 (aged 68)
Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia

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.

Key Events
Key Organisations
Political Activism