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Francis Lalley (Frank) O'Brien (c. 1877–1966)

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Francis Lalley (Frank) O'Brien (1877-1966) sheet metal worker and trade union official

Birth: 1877 at Redfern, Sydney, New South Wales, son of Irish-born parents Timothy Martin O'Brien (1816-1897) from Dungarven, Waterford, and Margaret, née Lalley (1835-1890) from Loughea, Galway. Marriage: 8 September 1905 at Brisbane, Queensland, to Alice Ethel Power (1880-1936), born at West Ham, Essex, England. They had two daughters and two sons. Death: 27 May 1966 in Mater Misericordiae Public Hospital, at South Brisbane, Queensland. Religion: Catholic. 

  • His father had arrived in Sydney with his parents (Frank's grandparents) as bounty immigrants aboard the Fairlie in November 1941.
  • Frank moved to Queensland about 1900. Later he joined the Federated Storemen’s and Packers’ Union. In 1921 he was elected Queensland branch secretary of the Sheet Metalworkers Union, and held the post for forty years. Member of the federal executive.
  • Represented union on Local Trades (Tradesmen's Rights) Committee for about twenty years. Treasurer of the Queensland Trades and Labor Council for 37 years.
  • Member of the Australian Labor Party for about sixty years. Belonged to the Baroona branch. Gained Life Membership of Qld branch of the ALP.
  • Cause of death: chronic myeloid leukaemia and cirrhosis.

Metal Worker, July 1966 p.1.

Additional Resources

  • photo, Daily Standard (Brisbane), 10 June 1922, p 5
  • profile, Courier-Mail (Brisbane), 5 July 1939, p 11

Citation details

'O'Brien, Francis Lalley (Frank) (c. 1877–1966)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 17 July 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


c. 1877
Redfern, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia


27 May, 1966 (aged ~ 89)
South Brisbane, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Cause of Death

cancer (leukemia)

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.

Key Organisations
Political Activism