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Luke Jones (1882–1919)

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Luke Jones (1882-1919) carpenter, Socialist and editor 

Birth: 1882 at Liverpool, England, son of Luke Jones (b. 1844), mariner, and his second wife Susan, née Pendleton (b.1852). Marriage: 9 September 1908 at Walton-on-the-Hill, Lancashire, England, to Emma Elizabeth Kirkpatrick (b.1882). Death: 21 May 1919 in his home at Hannam Street, Arncliffe, Sydney, New South Wales. Religion: Congregationalist. 

  • Arrived in New South Wales 1911. Joined Australian Socialist Party (ASP). Active as Marxist speaker.
  • Socialist Labor Party candidate for Newtown in NSW elections in 1913. Represented ASP at abortive unity conference between ASP and Socialist Labor Party in 1913.
  • Broke with ASP during war and with Jessie Lorimer and others founded Social Democratic League (SDL) of NSW during anti-conscription campaign 1916-1917.
  • SDL secretary. Editor of Social Democrat 1917-1918. Regular speaker at Sydney Domain. Visited Melbourne on speaking tour in mid-1918.
  • Associate of Vance Marshall, W.J. Miles.
  • According to press report, died following protracted ‘wasting’ illness; official cause of death was “tubercle of kidney” of four years duration.
  • The Socialist burial service was recited at his funeral and all present sang The Red Flag.
  • A friend later wrote “No tribute to the work of Luke Jones would seem complete without reference to his noble wife. She was never a speaker, but always a great worker, working side by side with him through thick and thin. In those stormy days of the first conscription campaign, when physical violence was often meted out to those who took the stump, I have seen that same courage displayed by Luke’s wife.”

H. J. Gibbney & Ann G. Smith, A Biographical Register 1788-1939, vol 1 (Canberra, 1987); R. Sharpe MA thesis, 2003; Labor Call, 11, 18, 25 July 1918; Socialist, 30 May 1919; Australian Worker, 29 May 1919.

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'Jones, Luke (1882–1919)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 25 May 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


Liverpool, Lancashire, England


21 May, 1919 (aged ~ 37)
Arncliffe, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death


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.

Political Activism