Murphy, DJ: TJ Ryan biography

Murphy, DJ

TJ Ryan: a Political Biography, University of Queensland Press, St Lucia, 1990; first published 1975

T.J. Ryan was … elected Labor Premier of Queensland against the turbulent background of World War I. His Labor government set the foundations for Labor rule in Queensland which lasted until the 1957 split. Denis Murphy’s fascinating biography concentrates on Ryan the politician, a consummate tactician and leader of great ability whose untimely death in the early 1920s robbed him of the chance to lead the nation. During his years as Premier of Queensland and Deputy Leader of the Federal Australian Labor Party, Ryan passed major reforms in labour laws, from the rending issues of conscription to censorship and industrial unrest. (blurb)

Ryan opposed conscription during World War I, antagonised Prime Minister Hughes and, after his early death, was often described as Labor’s ‘lost’ Federal leader. The first edition of the book was launched by then Prime Minister Whitlam in 1975. The ADB has a brief biography of Ryan and his life was summarised in 2012 at the time of the launch of a TJ Ryan Foundation to develop Labor policy in Queensland.

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